On this plane of existence, there are many injustices that the human mind cannot fathom. Among these are heart-rending trials of the innocent …. With regard to the spiritual significance of the suffering of children ‘who are afflicted at the hands of the oppressor’, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá not only states that for those souls ‘the afflictions that they bear in life become a cause for them of …. an outpouring of divine mercy and bestowal’, He also explains that to be a recipient of God’s mercy is ‘preferable to a hundred thousand earthly comforts’, and He promised that ‘in the world to come a mighty recompense awaiteth such souls’. Much, indeed, might be said upon this theme, and upon how the afflictions that they bear in life become the cause for them of such an outpouring of Divine mercy and bestowal as is preferable to a hundred thousand comforts and to a world of growth and development in this transitory abode. (Written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to an individual, 2 December 1985)
A few years ago, I was concerned about a child who seemed to be suffering from neglect and abuse and I tried to get help, only to be told “it’s OK. He’ll grow out of it. Children are resilient.” This really triggered my own experience. I don’t think it’s OK. I certainly didn’t grow out of it and at that time, I didn’t at all feel resilient because of it. This bothered me for many years, until I found this quote. From it I learned that:
- there are many injustices that the human mind cannot fathom, including the suffering of children at the hands of the oppressors
- many details are connected with it
- a mighty recompense awaits them in the next world, including an outpouring of divine mercy and bestowal
- their suffering is preferable to all the comfort of this world
- it’s preferable to all the growth and development they may have missed in this world
- it’s preferable to a hundred thousand earthly comforts
I gather that this information comes from tablets of ‘Abdu’l-Baha not yet translated, and I’d love to read the whole quote, but I’m so happy that the House of Justice summarized it. This helps me to accept that God’s aware of this problem, so I can let go of my need to look for justice in this world. It also helps me be patient through all the tests and spiritual growth that stems from my childhood abuse.
I wasn’t able to help that child; and no one was there to help me as a child but knowing that God saw it all and there will be compensation, I am grateful!
What jumped out for you as you read today’s meditation? I’d love it if you would share so we can all expand our knowledge of the Writings!
If you liked this meditation, you might also like my book Overcoming Abuse and Violence