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A Love Letter from God

 

 

 

O thou beloved of my heart![1]

I knew My love for thee; therefore I created thee, have engraved on thee Mine image and revealed to thee My beauty.[2]

My claim on thee is great, it cannot be forgotten. My grace to thee is plenteous, it cannot be veiled. My love has made in thee its home, it cannot be concealed. My light is manifest to thee, it cannot be obscured. [3]

Rejoice thou with great joy that We have remembered thee both now and in the past. Indeed the sweet savours of this remembrance shall endure and shall not change throughout the eternity of the Names of God, the Lord of mankind. [4]

Sorrow not if, in these days and on this earthly plane, things contrary to your wishes have been ordained and manifested by God, for days of blissful joy, of heavenly delight, are assuredly in store for you. [5]

I have not forgotten nor will I forget thee. [6] Verily, my soul longs for thee, for the lamp of the love of Baha’ is lighted within thy heart and I love to look upon thy face. [7] I have utmost love for thee and thy family for thou servest me — how can I be offended at you? Be assured and happy. [8]

I love thee with all my heart and pray for thee every eve and morn. [9] I have called thee by thy name; thou art Mine. [10] At all times do I speak of you and call you to mind. I pray unto the Lord, and with tears I implore Him to rain down all these blessings upon you, and gladden your hearts, and make blissful your souls, and grant you exceeding joy and heavenly delights. [11]

Thy name is often mentioned in the presence of this Wronged One and the glances of Our loving-kindness and compassion are directed towards thee.[12] The hearts are cheered whenever you are mentioned, the souls are comforted in your love, the holy spirits are captivated by your fragrance, the eyes are expecting to see you and the hearts are longing to meet you. [13] Indeed could ye but know how dear ye are in the presence of your true and heavenly Father, ye would stretch forth your wings and take your flight. [14]

Surely a day will come when all thy desires will be attained and God will answer all that which thou hast prayed for in thine heart, and I beg of Him to make all that which thou hast longed for, long ago, very attainable. Then thine heart will be overflowed with joy on account of such a great bounty. [15]

God has crowned you with honour and in your hearts has He set a radiant star; verily the light thereof shall brighten the whole world! [16]

He has chosen you to be His messengers of love throughout the world, to be His bearers of spiritual gifts to man, to be the means of spreading unity and concord on the earth. Thank God with all your hearts that such a privilege has been given unto you.[17]

We have graciously accepted thy devotions, thy praise, thy teaching work and the services thou hast rendered for the sake of this mighty Announcement. We have also hearkened unto that which thy tongue hath uttered at the meetings and gatherings. Verily thy Lord heareth and observeth all things. [18]

Know thou that, verily, the eye of favors is directed to thee and is beholding thee with a divine glance, so that thou mayest, with clear eyes, see the lights of the Kingdom upon the horizon. Remember, at all times, this great favor and thank thy Lord and supplicate to Him every day. [19]

I hope that, in the path of the love of God, thou wilt exert thyself exceedingly and thy wilt enjoy life. [20]

Now I say unto you, bear this on your hearts and in your minds. Verily your light shall illumine the whole world, your spirituality shall affect the heart of things. You shall in truth become the lighted torches of the globe. Fear not, neither be dismayed, for your light shall penetrate the densest darkness. This is the Promise of God, which I give unto you. Rise! and serve the Power of God! [21]

With Deepest Abiding Love,

God

Your True and Heavenly Father

 


[1] Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 130

[2] Bahá’u’lláh, Arabic Hidden Words 3

[3] Baha’u’llah, The Arabic Hidden Words 20

[4] Baha’u’llah, Tablets of Baha’u’llah, p. 245

[5] Bahá’u’lláh, Advent of Divine Justice, p. 69

[6] Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Bahá, p. 114

[7] Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 130

[8] Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 118

[9] Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 112

[10] Abdu’l-Bahá, Some Answered Questions, p. 168

[11] Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Bahá, p. 37

[12] Baha’u’llah, Tablets of Baha’u’llah, p. 174

[13] Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu’l-Bahá v2, p. 346

[14] ‘Abdul-Bahá, Fire and Light, p. 23

[15] Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 122

[16] Abdu’l-Bahá, Paris Talks, p. 68

[17] Abdu’l-Bahá, Paris Talks, p. 68

[18] Baha’u’llah, Tablets of Baha’u’llah, p. 245

[19] Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 132

[20]Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 132

[21] Abdu’l-Bahá, Paris Talks, p. 168

Are Pets Good for Your Health?


A question I’m sometimes asked in my Life Coaching practice is:  Are pets good for my health?” especially by people who didn’t grow up in cultures where animals were valued.  The Bahá’í Writings give us some reasons to agree that they are, as you will see below.

The animal spirit is the power of all the senses (‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Some Answered Questions, p. 208)

Experts agree that in addition to affecting all of our senses, caring for a pet can be good for both your physical and mental health. An animal companion can be a loyal friend and a valuable member of your family, plus, pets provide companionship and unconditional love.

The bond that develops between a human and animal companion can be just as strong as the bond between two people, sometimes even stronger, since pets offer unconditional love.

Companionship

A pet can bring fulfillment into the lives of those who might otherwise suffer from loneliness or depression. Dogs, specifically, provide a feeling of safety and help keep you active.

Mature adults, especially those who’ve lost a spouse, can find comfort and companionship in a pet. They often go through a period of feeling as if they’re no longer needed, but owning a pet can fill that need.

Children

The Bahá’í Faith teaches:

Educate the children in their infancy in such a way that they may become exceedingly kind and merciful to the animals. If an animal is sick they should endeavor to cure it; if it is hungry, they should feed it; if it is thirsty, they should satisfy its thirst; if it is tired, they should give it rest. (‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Baha’i World Faith, p. 373)

Children who are shy can benefit greatly from having a pet. Animals can help draw a shy child out of their shell. There are many other benefits of having a pet for a child:

  • A pet can be a good way to start a conversation and make friends.
  • A family pet can boost a child’s self-esteem.
  • Pets can give a child a sense of protection and security.
  • Pets can help children cope with and overcome fears. For example, a child that’s afraid to go to sleep in his own room may adapt more easily if the family cat or dog is allowed to accompany them to bed.
  • Pet ownership can help teach children about interaction, compassion and responsibility.  ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s recommendation that children be entrusted with pets, is to help them recognize that animals share the capacity for feelings with humans. Unlike humans,  animals are unable to verbalize their emotions and appeal for just treatment. Their fate is determined by our good will and they depend on our care and protection.

“The feelings are one and the same, whether ye inflict pain on man or on beast. There is no difference here whatever. And indeed ye do worse to harm an animal, for man hath a language, he can lodge a complaint, he can cry out and moan; if injured, he can have recourse to the authorities and these will protect him from his aggressor. But the hapless beast is mute, able neither to express its hurt nor take its case to the authorities…Therefore it is essential that ye show forth the utmost consideration to the animal, and that ye be even kinder to him than to your fellow man.” (‘Abdul-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdul-Bahá, p. 159.)

Exercise

Pets can keep you active. Dogs need regular exercise and their owners can reap the rewards of keeping fit and healthy in the process. Having a dog forces you to get up and go outside whether you want to or not.

Taking the dog for a nice leisurely walk is a great way to get moving, enjoy the outdoors, and get some fresh air. If you feel up to it, you can always go for a run with your dog. You’ll both get some exercise and have fun.

If health prevents you from walking a dog, consider getting a cat instead. Cats can be very loveable and energetic. Toss a ball across the floor or pull out a ball of yarn, and your cat will keep you both entertained for hours.

With a cat, you may not get as much exercise as you would with a dog, but you’ll get plenty of laughs, and laughter is great for your health, too!

On the subject of laughter, the Bahá’í Faith teaches:

‘Abdu’l Bahá loved laughter and His laughter was often a source of solace… He said that… It is good to laugh. Laughter is spiritual relaxation.  (H.M. Balyuzi, Abdu’l-Baha – The Centre of the Covenant, p. 31)

Health Benefits

Studies have shown owning a pet provides many health benefits. People with pets tend to have lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, a stronger immune system, and are generally healthier. Pet owners who’ve suffered a major illness recuperate quicker than those without a pet.

Pets have even been shown to increase a person’s immunity to allergies, especially in children. Owning a pet can reduce the risk of allergies, asthma and even heart disease.

Stress

 

People with pets also tend to be more positive and have less stress. They’re better able to cope with anxiety and deal with stressful situations. The action of petting a dog or cat can relieve stress and lower blood pressure. Pets help people relax and can even improve their attitude.

Socialization

A pet can help break the ice when meeting new people. Pet owners who are new to their neighborhood or have difficulty meeting people may find that their pets give them a chance to make new friends.

Animals are naturally curious and may run up to people in an attempt to make their own introductions. Conversations may start between two dog owners and a new friendship begins.

Understanding God

We know from the Bahá’í Writings that each and every created thing is a sign or expression of at least one of the names or attributes of God.  Bahá’u’lláh says that a true seeker:

will contemplate the manifest signs of the universe, and will penetrate the hidden mysteries of the soul… He will discover in all things the mysteries of divine Revelation and the evidences of an everlasting manifestation.  (Bahá’u’lláh, Gleanings, p. 267)

The attributes and names of God that animals manifest are what we are essentially attracted to in our our animals – gentleness, gracefulness, devotion, joy, enthusiasm, tenderness, strength, sincerity, meekness, trust, etc.  So it’s fun to think of my cat sleeping with a smile of heavenly delight as a revelation of the quality of God, the Peaceful or my dog, greeting me at the door, tail wagging, as God, the loving.  Some people have even suggested that “God” is “Dog”, spelled backwards!

There’s a reason pets were put on this earth as companions, and we’ve only touched on some of them here. If you’re considering letting a pet join your household, it’s proven that they can do positive things for your health. Get a pet, and enjoy!