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Old 03-06-2016, 08:57 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
Gabriel: An angel. Pure spirit; but finite. Immortal on account of their pure spirituality. Possessing understanding and freewill (Christian notion); possessing understanding, but without freewill (Islamic notion). They do not know the secrets of God; do not possess knowledge of the heart; and have no certain foreknowledge of the free actions of the future. They are NOT divine!
I think of Baha'u'llah as a man blessed to share a dual spiritual nature. Part is his humanely soul. The other is the eternal spirit of the Manifestation. I believe the Manifestation spirit is synonymous with the Christ Spirit and the concept of the Buddha, not as man understands them but in its actual essence. I do not distinguish it from the Holy Spirit, which I think not of as God but as God's influence among us, but this is largely because I do not know whether a distinction is necessary. I don't comprehend any of these terms in essence, but I believe that they have some form of spiritual existence, and that the Christ, the Buddha, and Baha'u'llah are all titles of the spirit that returns in the Manifestations. It could be that the Holy Spirit is this very same spirit, and that it is omnipresent in Creation, but that it especially manifests in particular prophets when times of revelation are upon us.

I believe that this spirit is a pure spirit. I believe it is finite as compared to God. Compared to the spirit of our souls, it appears as infinite, and can therefore be honestly called "infinite" without it being a false claim, because the claim is relative and not absolute.

This spirit possesses the ability to demonstrate any of God's names and attributes to the degree that God wills. The question is a matter of degree. As for how this spirit, a creation, can bear God's attributes, it does so not in absolute terms, but by degrees. If God is All-Merciful, then they are merciful. If God is All-Just, they are just. And they are the purest examples of these attributes on Earth. As for how they bear God's names, they do this not because they essentially possess these names along with God, but because they are God's Vicegerent, his Representative, and their bear his names as his most trusted servant among us. They are not God, and thus do not possess His names in the sense you have inferred. They are God's chosen messenger, and possess His names as an authorized intermediary with mankind.

This spirit is immortal on account of its pure spirituality. I do not understand the details of free will and understanding according to Christian and Islamic doctrine, so I cannot speak to that.

This spirit can know the secrets of God, because God is the All-Knowing and has allowed this spirit to know, but even this spirit knows God's secrets at God's will, and cannot wholly know God ever; rather, it understands how God cannot be wholly known, and it can relate God to us.

It is the ultimate messenger for God. It is the Voice of God. It has many names. I do not know if it is the same spirit as Gabriel, whose names means "one who appears as a man," or if they are peers, or if one is exalted over the other. All of that is beyond my right to know, at least in this world. As the plant is to the animal, I am to the Manifestation spirit and to Gabriel and to the Holy Spirit and to all the other spiritual creations of God that have been since before man.

Any of these spirits, including this particular spirit that manifests in certain Prophets, have some foreknowledge of the actions of the future, but I cannot speak as to their knowledge of "free actions." God is the All-Knowing, and therefore they know, to the degree God wills.

If such a spirit exists, designed to be God's messenger, then it is not wrong for it to tell us it possesses the names and attributes of God?



Quote:
He hath, moreover, conferred upon Him a double station. The first station, which is related to His innermost reality, representeth Him as One Whose voice is the voice of God Himself. To this testifieth the tradition: “Manifold and mysterious is My relationship with God. I am He, Himself, and He is I, Myself, except that I am that I am, and He is that He is.” And in like manner, the words: “Arise, O Muḥammad, for lo, the Lover and the Beloved are joined together and made one in Thee.” He similarly saith: “There is no distinction whatsoever between Thee and Them, except that They are Thy Servants.” The second station is the human station, exemplified by the following verses: “I am but a man like you.” “Say, praise be to my Lord! Am I more than a man, an apostle?” These Essences of Detachment, these resplendent Realities are the channels of God’s all-pervasive grace. Led by the light of unfailing guidance, and invested with supreme sovereignty, They are commissioned to use the inspiration of Their words, the effusions of Their infallible grace and the sanctifying breeze of Their Revelation for the cleansing of every longing heart and receptive spirit from the dross and dust of earthly cares and limitations. Then, and only then, will the Trust of God, latent in the reality of man, emerge, as resplendent as the rising Orb of Divine Revelation, from behind the veil of concealment, and implant the ensign of its revealed glory upon the summits of men’s hearts.

From the foregoing passages and allusions it hath been made indubitably clear that in the kingdoms of earth and heaven there must needs be manifested a Being, an Essence Who shall act as a Manifestation and Vehicle for the transmission of the grace of the Divinity Itself, the Sovereign Lord of all. Through the Teachings of this Day Star of Truth every man will advance and develop until he attaineth the station at which he can manifest all the potential forces with which his inmost true self hath been endowed. It is for this very purpose that in every age and dispensation the Prophets of God and His chosen Ones have appeared amongst men, and have evinced such power as is born of God and such might as only the Eternal can reveal.

Can one of sane mind ever seriously imagine that, in view of certain words the meaning of which he cannot comprehend, the portal of God’s infinite guidance can ever be closed in the face of men? Can he ever conceive for these Divine Luminaries, these resplendent Lights either a beginning or an end? What outpouring flood can compare with the stream of His all-embracing grace, and what blessing can excel the evidences of so great and pervasive a mercy? There can be no doubt whatever that if for one moment the tide of His mercy and grace were to be withheld from the world, it would completely perish. For this reason, from the beginning that hath no beginning the portals of Divine mercy have been flung open to the face of all created things, and the clouds of Truth will continue to the end that hath no end to rain on the soil of human capacity, reality and personality their favors and bounties. Such hath been God’s method continued from everlasting to everlasting.


- Gleanings From the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh

Last edited by Neal; 03-06-2016 at 09:00 AM.
 
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Old 03-06-2016, 09:07 AM   #82
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The Bearers of the Trust of God are made manifest unto the peoples of the earth as the Exponents of a new Cause and the Revealers of a new Message. Inasmuch as these Birds of the celestial Throne are all sent down from the heaven of the Will of God, and as they all arise to proclaim His irresistible Faith, they, therefore, are regarded as one soul and the same person. For they all drink from the one Cup of the love of God, and all partake of the fruit of the same Tree of Oneness.

These Manifestations of God have each a twofold station. One is the station of pure abstraction and essential unity. In this respect, if thou callest them all by one name, and dost ascribe to them the same attributes, thou hast not erred from the truth. Even as He hath revealed: “No distinction do We make between any of His Messengers.” For they, one and all, summon the people of the earth to acknowledge the unity of God, and herald unto them the Kawthar of an infinite grace and bounty. They are all invested with the robe of prophethood, and are honored with the mantle of glory. Thus hath Muḥammad, the Point of the Qur’án, revealed: “I am all the Prophets.” Likewise, He saith: “I am the first Adam, Noah, Moses, and Jesus.” Similar statements have been made by Imám ‘Alí. Sayings such as these, which indicate the essential unity of those Exponents of Oneness, have also emanated from the Channels of God’s immortal utterance, and the Treasuries of the gems of Divine knowledge, and have been recorded in the Scriptures. These Countenances are the recipients of the Divine Command, and the Day Springs of His Revelation. This Revelation is exalted above the veils of plurality and the exigencies of number. Thus He saith: “Our Cause is but One.” Inasmuch as the Cause is one and the same, the Exponents thereof also must needs be one and the same. Likewise, the Imáms of the Muḥammadan Faith, those lamps of certitude, have said: “Muḥammad is our first, Muḥammad is our last, Muḥammad our all.”

It is clear and evident to thee that all the Prophets are the Temples of the Cause of God, Who have appeared clothed in divers attire. If thou wilt observe with discriminating eyes, thou wilt behold Them all abiding in the same tabernacle, soaring in the same heaven, seated upon the same throne, uttering the same speech, and proclaiming the same Faith. Such is the unity of those Essences of Being, those Luminaries of infinite and immeasurable splendor! Wherefore, should one of these Manifestations of Holiness proclaim saying: “I am the return of all the Prophets,” He, verily, speaketh the truth. In like manner, in every subsequent Revelation, the return of the former Revelation is a fact, the truth of which is firmly established….

The other station is the station of distinction, and pertaineth to the world of creation, and to the limitations thereof. In this respect, each Manifestation of God hath a distinct individuality, a definitely prescribed mission, a predestined revelation, and specially designated limitations. Each one of them is known by a different name, is characterized by a special attribute, fulfils a definite mission, and is entrusted with a particular Revelation. Even as He saith: “Some of the Apostles We have caused to excel the others. To some God hath spoken, some He hath raised and exalted. And to Jesus, Son of Mary, We gave manifest signs, and We strengthened Him with the Holy Spirit.”

It is because of this difference in their station and mission that the words and utterances flowing from these Well Springs of Divine knowledge appear to diverge and differ. Otherwise, in the eyes of them that are initiated into the mysteries of Divine wisdom, all their utterances are, in reality, but the expressions of one Truth. As most of the people have failed to appreciate those stations to which We have referred, they, therefore, feel perplexed and dismayed at the varying utterances pronounced by Manifestations that are essentially one and the same.

Viewed in the light of their second station—the station of distinction, differentiation, temporal limitations, characteristics and standards—they manifest absolute servitude, utter destitution, and complete 54 self-effacement. Even as He saith: “I am the servant of God. I am but a man like you.”…


Were any of the all-embracing Manifestations of God to declare: “I am God,” He, verily, speaketh the truth, and no doubt attacheth thereto. For it hath been repeatedly demonstrated that through their Revelation, their attributes and names, the Revelation of God, His names and His attributes, are made manifest in the world. Thus, He hath revealed: “Those shafts were God’s, not Thine.” And also He saith: “In truth, they who plighted fealty unto Thee, really plighted that fealty unto God.” And were any of them to voice the utterance, “I am the Messenger of God,” He, also, speaketh the truth, the indubitable truth. Even as He saith: “Muḥammad is not the father of any man among you, but He is the Messenger of God.” Viewed in this light, they are all but Messengers of that ideal King, that unchangeable Essence. And were they all to proclaim, “I am the Seal of the Prophets,” they, verily, utter but the truth, beyond the faintest shadow of doubt. For they are all but one person, one soul, one spirit, one being, one revelation. They are all the manifestation of the “Beginning” and the “End,” the “First” and the “Last,” the “Seen” and the “Hidden”—all of which pertain to Him Who is the Innermost Spirit of Spirits and Eternal Essence of Essences. And were they to say, “We are the Servants of God,” this also is a manifest and indisputable fact. For they have been 55 made manifest in the uttermost state of servitude, a servitude the like of which no man can possibly attain. Thus in moments in which these Essences of Being were deep immersed beneath the oceans of ancient and everlasting holiness, or when they soared to the loftiest summits of Divine mysteries, they claimed their utterances to be the Voice of Divinity, the Call of God Himself.


Were the eye of discernment to be opened, it would recognize that in this very state, they have considered themselves utterly effaced and non-existent in the face of Him Who is the All-Pervading, the Incorruptible. Methinks, they have regarded themselves as utter nothingness, and deemed their mention in that Court an act of blasphemy. For the slightest whispering of self within such a Court is an evidence of self-assertion and independent existence. In the eyes of them that have attained unto that Court, such a suggestion is itself a grievous transgression. How much more grievous would it be, were aught else to be mentioned in that Presence, were man’s heart, his tongue, his mind, or his soul, to be busied with any one but the Well-Beloved, were his eyes to behold any countenance other than His beauty, were his ear to be inclined to any melody but His Voice, and were his feet to tread any way but His way….

By virtue of this station they have claimed for themselves the Voice of Divinity and the like, whilst by virtue of their station of Messengership, they have declared themselves the Messengers of God. In every instance they have voiced an utterance that would conform to the requirements of the occasion, and have ascribed all these declarations to Themselves, declarations ranging from the realm of Divine Revelation to the realm of creation, and from the domain of Divinity even unto the domain of earthly existence. Thus it is that whatsoever be their utterance, whether it pertain to the realm of Divinity, Lordship, Prophethood, Messengership, Guardianship, Apostleship, or Servitude, all is true, beyond the shadow of a doubt. Therefore these sayings which We have quoted in support of Our argument must be attentively considered, that the divergent utterances of the Manifestations of the Unseen and Day Springs of Holiness may cease to agitate the soul and perplex the mind.


Gleanings From the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh
 
Old 03-06-2016, 11:38 AM   #83
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A brief word about Adam. His historicity, to say the least, is very difficult to establish. For me, Adam was the first Manifestation of God , or the first time that God revealed any of his attributes by way of a human being. Although his name is unknown, I equate Adam with being that first manifestation.
 
Old 03-06-2016, 11:40 AM   #84
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Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
Ok, let’s make it easier for you. Take Baha'u'llah and the Bab: Which of these two possessed ‘all (the) attributes of God’; which of them was absolutely perfect; infinite in every perfection; absolutely simple (being pure spirit, without parts); absolutely immutable; eternal; everywhere present in created space. And what justification do you have that you are correct?

Take care!
Paul , do you accept that there were manifestations of Gid prior Mohammad?
 
Old 03-08-2016, 06:34 AM   #85
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Originally Posted by AidanK View Post
Paul , do you accept that there were manifestations of Gid prior Mohammad?
Hello Aidan,

That's a wee bit of a loaded question. I don’t accept the notion of ‘manifestations’ - as presented by the Baha’i - so no.

Take care, and very best regards.

Paul
 
Old 03-08-2016, 07:24 AM   #86
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@ Niblo

Salam

Sorry, I took my time to answer.

Quote:
As-Salāmu ‘Alaykum, GoaForce.

Thank you for your comments. I’m afraid I lack the imagination (some might say ‘vision’) to fully appreciate Kabbalistic symbolism.

I had a very good friend, name of Guy Jarrosson, from Lyon. I believe he was a son (perhaps the eldest child) of the French politician of the same name. My friend had been an officer in the French Navy, but eventually became a Little Brother of Jesus. The Order had a house in Leeds. I stayed there for a while. I seem to recall they had several books by Annick de Souzenelle; all in French (a language I have no knowledge of, I’m afraid!).
It's a small world.

To my understanding, there is a reality of the Manifestation of God. This is my point of view :

1_Manifestations of God are prophets, and prophets are men.
Muslims must regard them as equals, and Baha'is must see them as one reality.
However, they are simple men who will be judged accordingly by God. There is a heriarchy of them according to their degree of obedience and faithfulness to God.

2_The Manifestation of God is the embodiement of a divine Word.
Men are created with the same energies than letter.
When a new revemation has come, new Words are being revealed. These words contain an energy. This energy is one with the Voice that first utter it. In order to make sense, these Words need to shine within the Prophet.

3_The Manifestation is not a person.
Baha'u'llah is not Mirza of Nur. Baha'u'llah is the inner world of Mirza of Nur. Christ is the inner world of Yeshua. Ahmad is the inner world of Muhammad, son of Abdallah. The Manifestation is the dream of our world, experienced from within by the Prophets during their meditations. Then, this dream is made explicit through a Book. Then it becomes reality through the believers.
The very Manifestation contained in the world of the Prophet needs to be manifested through a process of exteriorization

Quote:
They do not know the secrets of God; do not possess knowledge of the heart; and have no certain foreknowledge of the free actions of the future. They are NOT divine!
Angels do not. And Prophets are limited (there is a Tree, or a Lotus, that they can't go beyond). As for the word divine, it is a human word, very limited as well. Those who achieve their union (=/= confusion) with God are divine in a way. Human being is divine.
But the essence of God does not mix up with His Creation. The Prophets know not his essence, and this is why they are not divine (even Baha'u'llah says it).

The concept of Manifestation is really difficult to understand, but essential I think. It's not incarnation, it's not prophethood. It's just Manifestation.
 
Old 03-08-2016, 12:29 PM   #87
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Originally Posted by GoaForce View Post
@ Niblo

Salam

Sorry, I took my time to answer.



It's a small world.

To my understanding, there is a reality of the Manifestation of God. This is my point of view :

1_Manifestations of God are prophets, and prophets are men.
Muslims must regard them as equals, and Baha'is must see them as one reality.
However, they are simple men who will be judged accordingly by God. There is a heriarchy of them according to their degree of obedience and faithfulness to God.

2_The Manifestation of God is the embodiement of a divine Word.
Men are created with the same energies than letter.
When a new revemation has come, new Words are being revealed. These words contain an energy. This energy is one with the Voice that first utter it. In order to make sense, these Words need to shine within the Prophet.

3_The Manifestation is not a person.
Baha'u'llah is not Mirza of Nur. Baha'u'llah is the inner world of Mirza of Nur. Christ is the inner world of Yeshua. Ahmad is the inner world of Muhammad, son of Abdallah. The Manifestation is the dream of our world, experienced from within by the Prophets during their meditations. Then, this dream is made explicit through a Book. Then it becomes reality through the believers.
The very Manifestation contained in the world of the Prophet needs to be manifested through a process of exteriorization



Angels do not. And Prophets are limited (there is a Tree, or a Lotus, that they can't go beyond). As for the word divine, it is a human word, very limited as well. Those who achieve their union (=/= confusion) with God are divine in a way. Human being is divine.
But the essence of God does not mix up with His Creation. The Prophets know not his essence, and this is why they are not divine (even Baha'u'llah says it).

The concept of Manifestation is really difficult to understand, but essential I think. It's not incarnation, it's not prophethood. It's just Manifestation.
Very well said, GoaForce. This was a very nuanced expression of much of what I too have gleaned from the Writings. The concept of Manifestation is not intended to be contradictory to any of the previous terms (messiahs, prophets, Buddhas, messengers, avatars, incarnations) but is meant to provide more nuance in comparison. It is the evolution of the term for the same thing that has always existed throughout human history.

I like to imagine that when Jesus spoke, saying his nature was as the Son of God/Man, he was trying to better explain the nature of the Manifestation/prophet, compared to the then-accepted concept of a "prophet" or "friend of God." But by the time of Muhammad, the concept of being "God's son" was too warped in the minds of the Christians, and again needed correction. This time, calling the Manifestation a "messenger" and a "prophet" corrected humanity's idea of the Manifestations away from the misconception that they were to be equated to God's essence. Now, humanity has missed out on the importance of the example and wisdom the Manifestations provide us when they are in our presence, so we have the new term "Manifestation" so we appreciate better the significance and value of these figures, while not ever elevating them to the status of Godhead.

I think that most Baha'is get a bit of the picture based on how they first learn the term, and then they express the idea in their own words. Inevitably they present the concept in a way that is imperfect and contradicts the theology of many other religionists. But the beauty of Baha'u'llah's Writings is that I see many layers of nuance, through the seemingly contradictory statements He makes, that force us to really accept the new concept of "Manifestation" as being the most perfect idea of God's messengers we have yet received on Earth.

... Of course, that is my lowly opinion as just one Baha'i, with all of its according biases.

Last edited by Neal; 03-08-2016 at 12:32 PM.
 
Old 03-09-2016, 08:31 AM   #88
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Paul, I have a favor to ask, if you have time later. Can you explain to me how you understand God as being omnipresent in the material creation? It might be good to share your understanding of omnipresence. We may genuinely differ on our beliefs regarding God on this matter, or we may simply be speaking in different terms regarding our understanding of divine realities. If this is too off topic, we could start a new thread. And of course, only share if you wish!
Hi Neal,

It is a teaching of Christianity, Judaism and Islam that the Creator is present in all created space. His Omnipresence is necessary because He is not only the Creator of all things, He is also their Sustainer.

The act of creation wasn’t a one-off event in some far distant past. It is an ongoing process of development and renewal. It is for this reason that the Beloved gave Himself the name: ‘Al-Musawwir’ (The Fashioner, The Shaper, The Designer). It is He who brings about the evolution of the Universe; and of all life within it.

The Creator is pure spirit, devoid of parts. This means that He cannot be divided; that wherever He happens to be He is there in His entirety - whether it be in a pair of cupped hands; in a room; in a place of worship, and so on. That is why He is able to say: ‘We closer to (man) than his jugular vein.’ (Qaf: 16). This is why it is possible for Him to have a personal relationship with each and every one of us.

It is a source of immeasurable wonder that Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) – Master of the Universe – should say to every person – fashioned as we are from the dust of the earth: ‘Remember Me; I will remember you.’ (Al-Baqara: 152).

When you are alone with Him then, as far as He is concerned, there is no one else in all the Universe but you.

I hope this answers your question.

Very best regards,

Paul
 
Old 03-09-2016, 08:36 AM   #89
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Hello again, Neal,

You write:

‘I think of Baha'u'llah as a man blessed to share a dual spiritual nature. Part is his humanely soul. The other is the eternal spirit of the Manifestation.

This is where we will have to agree to differ. There is no evidence in Scripture (by which I mean the Bible and the Qur’an) that Baha'u'llah (or anyone else for that matter) possesses the ‘dual spirit nature’ that you describe. It might be worth looking at how Muslims regard the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam). This will show my reason for disagreeing with you; but first, allow me to give my definition of ‘evidence’:

There are two types of evidence: compelling and persuasive. By compelling I mean evidence that is not able to be refuted. If I said, for example, that American Airlines flight AA6180 left Heathrow for Los Angeles at 16.05 this afternoon from Terminal 5 (it did!), no person who fully understood the message - and who checked the evidence - would be able to deny the message without being considered a liar. By persuasive, I mean evidence that has the power to influence or persuade someone to believe in its truth.

All evidence contained within Scripture is persuasive; and in every case its truth is known and accepted by faith. Whenever people tell me that they believe such-and-such, and I can see (or am told) that their belief is based on an honest and sincere interpretation of Scripture, my practice is to take them at their word. I never assume that they are perverted, or obdurate, or ‘evil’. I have no doubt that you feel the very same.

Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) was asked by his community to prove his prophethood by means of some supernatural deed. I imagine he raised this matter with his Lord. This is what the Beloved had to say:

‘They say: “We will not believe you (Muhammad) until you make a spring gush out of the ground for us; or until you have a garden of date palms and vines, and make rivers pour through them; or make the sky fall on us in pieces, as you claimed will happen; or bring Allāh and the angels before us face to face; or have a house made of gold; or ascend into the sky - even then, we will not believe in your ascension until you send a real book down for us to read.” Say: “Glory be to my Lord! Am I anything but a mortal, a messenger?” The only thing that kept these people from believing, when guidance came to them, was that they said: “How could Allāh have sent a human being as a messenger?” Say: “If there were angels walking about on earth, feeling at home, We would have sent them an angel from Heaven as a messenger.” Say: “Allāh is witness enough between me and you. He knows and observes His servants well.”’ (Al-Isra: 90-96).

The greater part of this surah deals with the nature of prophecy; and especially the fact that Muhammad was just a mortal. Please take special note of the words: ‘The only thing that kept these people from believing, when guidance came to them, was that they said: “How could Allāh have sent a human being as a messenger?”

It seems to me that this is exactly what Baha'u'llah was asking when he thought of Muhammad (and of the rest of the prophets): ‘How could God have sent a (mere) human being as a messenger?”

Note Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla)’s answer: ‘If there were angels walking about on earth, feeling at home, We would have sent them an angel from Heaven as a messenger.’ In other words, if there were superhumans walking about on earth He would have sent a superhuman; but as there are just humans - mere humans - He sent a mere human. Like for like.

Here’s another verse: ‘Say: “I am only a human being, like you, to whom it has been revealed that your God is One. Anyone who fears to meet his Lord should do good deeds and give no one a share in the worship due to his Lord.”’ (Al-Kahf: 110).

In both these verses, the emphasis is placed on the fact that the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) was an ordinary human being, a mortal, who had been chosen for the noble task of being Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla)’s Messenger. He himself made no claim whatsoever to being anything other than a human being who had been given a divine message to convey to mankind. There is no evidence that he had – and he never claimed to have – ultra-human status of the kind envisaged by the Bahai.

The prophets (each of them) were great because they remained true to their calling, despite experiencing all the feelings and emotions of mere human beings; striving within their all too human limitations to carry out the Will of their Lord. They were favoured (highly favoured) with receiving Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla)’s message, and being assigned the task of conveying it. That is why the Muslims are required to declare (and to believe) in all of them. If we do not do this, then we are not Muslims. But that is as far as it goes.

Before his death, Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) insisted that his followers should neither worship him, nor make an idol of him. He stressed his humanity and mortality over and over again. He prohibited the building of a place of worship over his grave. In fact, he was buried in his apartment; which was attached to the main mosque of Medina. It is there today; and while Muslims visit the mosque in order to pray, they visit his grave only to send benedictions upon him. They do not (should not) pray to him for any benefit because doing so is strictly forbidden in Islam.

So here we are: On the one hand we have the Sacred Word of the Beloved that His Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) was just an ordinary man. On the other hand, we have Baha'u'llah’s claim that the Prophet (and he himself, of course) was rather more than that. Who would you have the Muslim’s believe: Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla), or Baha'u'llah?

I’m prepared to discuss the rest of your post, if you like; but only if you wish me to.

Have a great weekend

Paul

Last edited by Niblo; 03-09-2016 at 08:41 AM.
 
Old 03-09-2016, 08:38 AM   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoaForce View Post
@ Niblo

Salam

Sorry, I took my time to answer.



It's a small world.

To my understanding, there is a reality of the Manifestation of God. This is my point of view :

1_Manifestations of God are prophets, and prophets are men.
Muslims must regard them as equals, and Baha'is must see them as one reality.
However, they are simple men who will be judged accordingly by God. There is a heriarchy of them according to their degree of obedience and faithfulness to God.

2_The Manifestation of God is the embodiement of a divine Word.
Men are created with the same energies than letter.
When a new revemation has come, new Words are being revealed. These words contain an energy. This energy is one with the Voice that first utter it. In order to make sense, these Words need to shine within the Prophet.

3_The Manifestation is not a person.
Baha'u'llah is not Mirza of Nur. Baha'u'llah is the inner world of Mirza of Nur. Christ is the inner world of Yeshua. Ahmad is the inner world of Muhammad, son of Abdallah. The Manifestation is the dream of our world, experienced from within by the Prophets during their meditations. Then, this dream is made explicit through a Book. Then it becomes reality through the believers.
The very Manifestation contained in the world of the Prophet needs to be manifested through a process of exteriorization



Angels do not. And Prophets are limited (there is a Tree, or a Lotus, that they can't go beyond). As for the word divine, it is a human word, very limited as well. Those who achieve their union (=/= confusion) with God are divine in a way. Human being is divine.
But the essence of God does not mix up with His Creation. The Prophets know not his essence, and this is why they are not divine (even Baha'u'llah says it).

The concept of Manifestation is really difficult to understand, but essential I think. It's not incarnation, it's not prophethood. It's just Manifestation.

Hello GoaForce

As-Salāmu ‘Alaykum wa Rahmatullāhi wa Barakātuhu.

The tree you refer to is known as ‘Sidrat al-Muntaha’.

Referring to the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam), the Beloved says: ‘A second time he saw him (the angel Gabriel) by the lote tree beyond which none may pass, near the Garden of Restfulness, when the tree was covered in nameless (splendour). His sight never wavered, nor was it too bold, and he saw some of the greatest signs of his Lord.’ (Al-Najm: 13-17).

The word ‘nameless’ is also translated as: Something unimaginable, indescribable

In the aHadith we read:

‘Then Gabriel took me till we reached Sidrat-il-Muntaha (Lote tree of; the utmost boundry) which was shrouded in colors, indescribable. Then I was admitted into Paradise where I found small (tents or) walls (made) of pearls and its earth was of musk.’ (Sahih Al Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 8, Number 345); and again: ‘It is narrated on the authority of Abdullah (b. Umar) that when the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) was taken for the Night journey, he was taken to Sidrat-ul-Muntaha, which is situated on the sixth heaven, where terminates everything that ascends from the earth and is held there, and where terminates everything that descends from above it and is held there.’ (Sahih Muslim: The Book of Faith - Kitab Al-Iman).

Sidrat al-Muntaha is said to mark the limit of all human and angelic knowledge. What lies beyond this point is what is known as the ‘unseen’. No one has knowledge of the unseen except Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla), or the one to whom He makes it known. No one has gone beyond Sidrat al-Muntaha except the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam).

Please see my post to Neal. I’m prepared to discuss your post further, if you like; but only if you wish me to.

Have a great day, and very best regards,

Paul

Last edited by Niblo; 03-09-2016 at 08:45 AM.
 
Old 03-09-2016, 09:06 AM   #91
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If it is not a problem I would like to give my idea about this topic as well:

According to Baha'i teachings also Islam and Sufism and mysticism, there are five realms:
Nasut, Malakut, Jabarut,Lahut and Hahut (almost every one has heard about nasoot and lahut) .

now Nasut is the lowest realm, in this world and Hahut is the highest in which there is ONLY GOD. then Malakut is for complete souls of great people and Jabarut is for saintly souls and for the angels. then we have Lahut. Lahut is ONLY for prophets and messengers of God; ONLY them. all worlds before Lahut, are called "worlds of creation"; then Lahut is called "world of reflection" because in this world God's attributes are reflected in the prophets. no great soul of any human being can reach Lahut. but prophets who are the "words of God" exist there and they are the media through whom we can connect Hahut which is realm of God.

now if we say that Prophets are complete reflections of attributes of God, first of all, we are mentioning that kind of existence in the world of Lahut. they are the most complete souls and they are the only medias through which all others can connect to God. and another matter is that yes, they reflect all attributes of God as much as the capacity of a created soul..

no ordinary human being can ever manifest the attributes of God in that level of prophets and manifestations. prophets and manifestations are most complete souls. it is like if we imagine that created soul have the potential ability of 10, then prophets have used all their capacity and have fulfilled all attributes as much as is the capacity of a created soul.

even in Islam we have a Hadith that say at the night of Meraj of Mohammad, when he went up to the seventh sky and to Sadrat-ul-montaha, Gabriel was all the time accompanying him yet in a certain stage he said: "Mohammad, I can no more accompany you; if I come one step forward I will burn." . that means the capacity of the souls of messengers of God is extraordinary.that also means that where in Qur'an it is said that Mohammad is just a human being like others, it refers to His outward appearance. we can clearly see that the capacity of His soul had been more than even Gabriel. yet messengers of God have physical aspects too; like this physical body, like feeling of hunger and thirst and because of these attributes they cannot be exactly like God. yet I repeat that they manifest the attributes of God as much as is the capacity of any created soul

Last edited by maryamr; 03-09-2016 at 09:08 AM.
 
Old 03-09-2016, 11:30 AM   #92
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Originally Posted by maryamr View Post
If it is not a problem I would like to give my idea about this topic as well:

According to Baha'i teachings also Islam and Sufism and mysticism, there are five realms:
Nasut, Malakut, Jabarut,Lahut and Hahut (almost every one has heard about nasoot and lahut) .

now Nasut is the lowest realm, in this world and Hahut is the highest in which there is ONLY GOD. then Malakut is for complete souls of great people and Jabarut is for saintly souls and for the angels. then we have Lahut. Lahut is ONLY for prophets and messengers of God; ONLY them. all worlds before Lahut, are called "worlds of creation"; then Lahut is called "world of reflection" because in this world God's attributes are reflected in the prophets. no great soul of any human being can reach Lahut. but prophets who are the "words of God" exist there and they are the media through whom we can connect Hahut which is realm of God.

now if we say that Prophets are complete reflections of attributes of God, first of all, we are mentioning that kind of existence in the world of Lahut. they are the most complete souls and they are the only medias through which all others can connect to God. and another matter is that yes, they reflect all attributes of God as much as the capacity of a created soul..

no ordinary human being can ever manifest the attributes of God in that level of prophets and manifestations. prophets and manifestations are most complete souls. it is like if we imagine that created soul have the potential ability of 10, then prophets have used all their capacity and have fulfilled all attributes as much as is the capacity of a created soul.

even in Islam we have a Hadith that say at the night of Meraj of Mohammad, when he went up to the seventh sky and to Sadrat-ul-montaha, Gabriel was all the time accompanying him yet in a certain stage he said: "Mohammad, I can no more accompany you; if I come one step forward I will burn." . that means the capacity of the souls of messengers of God is extraordinary.that also means that where in Qur'an it is said that Mohammad is just a human being like others, it refers to His outward appearance. we can clearly see that the capacity of His soul had been more than even Gabriel. yet messengers of God have physical aspects too; like this physical body, like feeling of hunger and thirst and because of these attributes they cannot be exactly like God. yet I repeat that they manifest the attributes of God as much as is the capacity of any created soul
Good interesting thoughts Maryamr - Thank you

Regards Tony
 
Old 03-09-2016, 02:21 PM   #93
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The Creator is pure spirit, devoid of parts. This means that He cannot be divided; that wherever He happens to be He is there in His entirety - whether it be in a pair of cupped hands; in a room; in a place of worship, and so on. That is why He is able to say: ‘We closer to (man) than his jugular vein.’ (Qaf: 16). This is why it is possible for Him to have a personal relationship with each and every one of us.

Thank you, Niblo! Your entire answer was quite moving, and spoke to my own understanding of God. I don't disagree with it, and I think I understand what you mean by "wherever He happens to be He is there in His entirety," now.

When I first read your statement to the effect of being able to "hold God in the cup of my hands," I misunderstood, because to me that implies containment, that God is not greater so great as to exist beyond all comprehension or boundaries. But that is not what you mean. I think, and correct me if I am wrong, that you are saying that God is always God and never anything less than God, and there is nowhere that God is not, and if God is everywhere and never less than all, then anywhere God can be found, one can find all of God's names and qualities.

I think you have helped me understand what omnipresence means. Thank you.

Last edited by Neal; 03-09-2016 at 03:15 PM.
 
Old 03-09-2016, 03:15 PM   #94
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Niblo,

Of course, we fundamentally differ on whether Baha'u'llah was a messenger of God. It is not my place to convince you to my position. Only His words and His life can do that, if they are adequately persuasive to you. I appreciate what you have said about how anyone can find different beliefs confirmed by the persuasive proofs of scripture. That certainly holds true in this current discussion.

I think that we still differ primarily on what we believe Baha'u'llah claimed He was, or what He consisted of. From my perspective, the words of Baha'u'llah are not the words of Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur, but are the words of Baha'u'llah, which is both Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur, and of God, using the Manifestation spirit, comparable to Gabriel, to speak using Mirza Husayn Ali's body, pen, and voice. I see this as no different in substance from Muhammad's claims to prophethood (according to my own interpretations of the Qur'an, of course), although I find Baha'u'llah expression of it is different in that it spoke using mystical languages more comprehensible in this day than they would have been in the days of the Prophet Muhammad, and so we have more nuance available through His Writings to give us a gleaning of the spiritual realities beyond our physical one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
Say: “If there were angels walking about on earth, feeling at home, We would have sent them an angel from Heaven as a messenger.” Say: “Allāh is witness enough between me and you. He knows and observes His servants well.”’ (Al-Isra: 90-96).
The Angel Gabriel did not walk on Earth, yet He could speak through Muhammad to share the Word of God, and bestow the Holy Qur'an upon mankind. In this regard, He was present on Earth, even though we could not see the Angel Gabriel with our eyes. I personally distinguish between the man Mirza Husayn of Nur and the Manifestation spirit, based on how I read Baha'u'llah's own words (shared in previous posts on this thread in bold lettering). A pure distinction might not be the whole Truth, but I also don't expect to be capable of understanding the whole Truth, so I am content with the amount of God's grace I have captured by this relative truth, which does seem to be confirmed in the Baha'i Writings. From what grace I have received from the bounty of the Baha'i Dispensation, I believe they are distinct.

If Baha'is distinguished Baha'u'llah from Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur, in a way comparable to how Gabriel is distinguished from the Prophet, would your noted difference between a prophet and a Manifestation still exist?

Quote:
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The greater part of this surah deals with the nature of prophecy; and especially the fact that Muhammad was just a mortal.
Huhammad was a mortal. And, I (as a Baha'i) believe, so was Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur. Since Baha'is do not refer to that man by his name, but by the title "Baha'u'llah," it is difficult to tell that many of us Baha'is do not consider Mirza Husayn of Nur to be immortal. In fact, I have not found anything in the Writings to make me believe that Mirza Husayn of Nur claimed immortality. Baha'u'llah may have, as the Voice of God spoke/wrote through Mirza Husayn's person, but the bones that rest in Baha'u'llah's shrine are the bones of a human being. It is doctrine that the atoms of the Manifestation are the same as the atoms of any other man. Thus, I see no contradiction here with your theology regarding the definition of a prophet, as you have stated it, and the Baha'i definition of a Manifestation thus far.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
It seems to me that this is exactly what Baha'u'llah was asking when he thought of Muhammad (and of the rest of the prophets): ‘How could God have sent a (mere) human being as a messenger?”
Of course, I don't think Baha'u'llah was asking, at least not in a confounded, philosophical way. This is where we differ. I believe He was writing the Truth, relative to the capacities of His audience. And He affirmed the human natures of the prophets, while venerating their importance to mankind as leaders and bearers of God's Word and missions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
Note Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla)’s answer: ‘If there were angels walking about on earth, feeling at home, We would have sent them an angel from Heaven as a messenger.’ In other words, if there were superhumans walking about on earth He would have sent a superhuman; but as there are just humans - mere humans - He sent a mere human. Like for like.
I don't think Baha'u'llah ever said that Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur was superhuman. Baha'u'llah described itself/Himself, but before Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur "manifested God," or "received Revelation," I believe he was a man! A man destined to become God's messenger, but a man. Likewise, I have already affirmed that as a Baha'i, I understand Baha'u'llah's miracles to have come from God, not Him. I don't believe that He was superhuman, I believe that He was a man with special connection to the supernatural, a connection that He did not will, but that was given to Him by God and by God's angel(s).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
In both these verses, the emphasis is placed on the fact that the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) was an ordinary human being, a mortal, who had been chosen for the noble task of being Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla)’s Messenger. He himself made no claim whatsoever to being anything other than a human being who had been given a divine message to convey to mankind. There is no evidence that he had – and he never claimed to have – ultra-human status of the kind envisaged by the Bahai.
I don't think that Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur was ultra-human, nor do I think Baha'u'llah is, because Baha'u'llah is not human at all! "Baha'u'llah" is a title for the figure we Baha'is turn towards to receive God's word. Baha'u'llah is the mirror of God. Baha'u'llah is outwardly Mirza Husayn of Nur's body, but it is actually the intersection of our physical plan and the spiritual plane: a plane which is as closer to us than our life vein, but can never be seen with human eyes.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
Before his death, Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) insisted that his followers should neither worship him, nor make an idol of him. He stressed his humanity and mortality over and over again. He prohibited the building of a place of worship over his grave. In fact, he was buried in his apartment; which was attached to the main mosque of Medina. It is there today; and while Muslims visit the mosque in order to pray, they visit his grave only to send benedictions upon him. They do not (should not) pray to him for any benefit because doing so is strictly forbidden in Islam.
I do not doubt anything you say in the above paragraph, nor do I wish to undermine it. I would like to offer a few thoughts.

1 - Baha'is are not to worship photographs of Baha'u'llah. I believe this is because we too are not to make idols of Mirza Husayn of Nur.

2 - Baha'is are permitted to pray to Baha'u'llah, if this is the best they can do in terms of feeling like they are praying to God, but Baha'u'llah only acts as a channel for the prayer, as when a Catholic prays to a saint. It is always considered more powerful to pray to God directly, and thus our prayers, as written by Baha'u'llah, are addressed to God. Most Baha'is I know do not make up prayers, so about 95%+ of Baha'i prayers seem to skip Baha'u'llah entirely.

3 - Baha'u'llah forgave people for worshipping Him, for He understood the mistake, but He called on them to worship God. He called on mankind to heed Him, for that was the way to learn from God, just as heeding Muhammad was the way to learn from God during times of Muhammad's revelations.

4 - Baha'u'llah may not have forbidden building a place of worship over His grave, but neither did He ask for it. Does the Qur'an forbid worshipping over the grave of the Prophet? In truth, Baha'is may worship anywhere, for there is nowhere God cannot be worshipped. Many happen to worship at the shrines of our founders, is all. But we are to worship God, not them.

5 - Muslims have almost universally adopted the habits you describe, in terms of completely separating the prophet from God. Baha'is admittedly are less strict in making this seperation in general, because that is not stressed as much in our community. But theologically, the notion is consistent. Muslims fear praying at Muhammad's grave because they don't want to be mistaken for praying to Muhammad as if He were God. Baha'is don't fear praying at Baha'u'llah's shrine/Mirza Husayn Ali's grave because we are confident that God knows we pray only to Him, and because we are confident he will forgive us if we err on our path to learning the difference between His Station and the stations of His Messengers. The core Baha'i theology is identical to the Muslim theology in this regard, at least as I understand it. I leave it to my fellow Baha'is on here to prove me wrong, but I am confident in this.



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So here we are: On the one hand we have the Sacred Word of the Beloved that His Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) was just an ordinary man. On the other hand, we have Baha'u'llah’s claim that the Prophet (and he himself, of course) was rather more than that. Who would you have the Muslim’s believe: Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla), or Baha'u'llah?
I am afraid that I don't think we are in the same place. I accept that God's Prophet Muhammad was an ordinary man in relation to God and the angels. I also see that he accomplished extraordinary things that only a man assisted by God could have done. That assistance may have come from God directly or through God's angels, or via other means that I cannot yet comprehend, because I am not purely spiritual with pure spiritual perception. But it was there. Muhammad was extraordinary, not because of who or what he was in substance, but because He was Intended to be Great. And God is the Fashioner, as the Qur'an and Baha'i Writings both tell us, and if God fashioned Muhammad, then he fashioned him with the intention to do extraordinary things in God's name. So it was with Baha'u'llah. We call Mirza Husayn of Nur "The Glory of God" because we are not speaking of the ordinary man, but of every extraordinary thing that God fashioned Him to do. "Baha'u'llah" represents every word, deed, and example that was performed by Mirza Husayn of Nur in God's name, with the permission of God. None of the credit goes to Mirza Husayn Ali, all of it belongs to God.

Thank you, and may you have a wonderful week,

Neal

Last edited by Neal; 03-09-2016 at 03:19 PM.
 
Old 03-09-2016, 03:41 PM   #95
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The substance wherewith God hath created Me is not the clay out of which others have been formed. He hath conferred upon Me that which the worldly-wise can never comprehend, nor the faithful discover .. . I am one of the sustaining pillars of the Primal Word of God. Whosoever hath recognized Me, hath known all that is true and right, and hath attained all that is good and seemly; and whosoever hath failed to recognize Me, hath turned away from all that is true and right and hath succumbed to everything evil and unseemly.

The Báb

through

gnat
 
Old 03-09-2016, 03:46 PM   #96
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The substance wherewith God hath created Me is not the clay out of which others have been formed. He hath conferred upon Me that which the worldly-wise can never comprehend, nor the faithful discover .. . I am one of the sustaining pillars of the Primal Word of God. Whosoever hath recognized Me, hath known all that is true and right, and hath attained all that is good and seemly; and whosoever hath failed to recognize Me, hath turned away from all that is true and right and hath succumbed to everything evil and unseemly.

The Báb

through

gnat
But who spoke, Gnat? Ali Muhammad, or the Bab?
 
Old 03-09-2016, 03:51 PM   #97
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The Bearers of the Trust of God are made manifest unto the peoples of the earth as the Exponents of a new Cause and the Revealers of a new Message. Inasmuch as these Birds of the celestial Throne are all sent down from the heaven of the Will of God...

(Baha'u'llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha'u'llah, p. 50)

To me, these terms signify an eternal spirit descending onto men, who become Manifestations once the spirit manifests in them. That man can be of clay, yet these birds are of a spiritual substance.
 
Old 03-09-2016, 08:21 PM   #98
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Good interesting thoughts Maryamr - Thank you

Regards Tony
thank you Tony
 
Old 03-09-2016, 09:03 PM   #99
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But who spoke, Gnat? Ali Muhammad, or the Bab?
“When I contemplate, O my God, the relationship that bindeth me to Thee, I am moved to proclaim to all created things ‘verily I am God!’; and when I consider my own self, lo, I find it coarser than clay!”

“Certain ones among you,” He declared, “have said: ‘He it is Who hath laid claim to be God.’ By God! This is a gross calumny. I am but a servant of God Who hath believed in Him and in His signs… My tongue, and My heart, and My inner and My outer being testify that there is no God but Him, that all others have been created by His behest, and been fashioned through the operation of His Will…. I am He that telleth abroad the favors with which God hath, through His bounty, favored Me. If this be My transgression, then I am truly the first of the transgressors….” Bahá'í Reference Library - Bahá’u’lláh, Pages 25-26

Interesting - Regards Tony
 
Old 03-10-2016, 06:15 AM   #100
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I think, and correct me if I am wrong, that you are saying that God is always God and never anything less than God, and there is nowhere that God is not, and if God is everywhere and never less than all, then anywhere God can be found, one can find all of God's names and qualities.
I think you have helped me understand what omnipresence means. Thank you.
Hi Neal,

That’s correct. Glad to be of help.

Take care.

Paul
 
Old 03-10-2016, 06:21 AM   #101
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Niblo,

Baha'u'llah is not human at all!
Hello Neal,

You’ve made a very telling remark: ‘Baha'u'llah is not human at all!’ If you don’t mind, I’d like to limit my reply to this one remark.

I assume that your reason for saying that Baha'u'llah is not human is because you believe him to be a ‘manifestation of God’. As you know, Baha'u'llah claimed that Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) was also a ‘manifestation of God’; which means - by your reckoning - that Muhammad is also not human. After all, what is true for one ‘manifestation’ is surely true for another.

We agree that there are humans, angels and, of course, Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) Himself.

We agree that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are not the Beloved. We agree that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are not angels. We do NOT agree, however, that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are both human.

According to Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) - I’ve said this before, so need not provide references now - Muhammad was just an ordinary man; that is to say, a human. There is not the slightest hint in the Qur’an that he was anything other. Only the Baha’i say otherwise; that he was not a human.

If Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) is correct, then the Baha’i are in error. If the Baha’i are correct, then Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) is in error.

Who is correct?

Have a great day, and very best regards.

Paul
 
Old 03-10-2016, 07:55 AM   #102
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As you know, Baha'u'llah claimed that Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) was also a ‘manifestation of God’; which means - by your reckoning - that Muhammad is also not human. After all, what is true for one ‘manifestation’ is surely true for another.
Honestly, I think we are debating semantics. We differ on the weight of the terms, surely, so the semantics matter to each of us. But technically speaking, I have never read Baha'u'llah claim "Muhammad is a Manifestation of God." That kind of a phrase is a human summary of Baha'u'llah's teachings, but those are not His words. I myself would not say "Muhammad was a Manifestation of God" to a Muslim, but I would to a Christian. This is not because I wish to deceive, but because the statement means different things in different contexts. (Taking context into account is a part of speaking in relative truths.) "Muhammad" in the Muslim context refers to the name of the man who was God's prophet/messenger. As such, speaking to a Muslim I would not say "Muhammad is a Manifestation fo God" any more than I would say "Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur is a Manifestation of God" to a Baha'i. There is no accepted comparable title for Muhammad, within the Muslim world, as the title "Baha'u'llah" is for Baha'u'llah. GoaForce tried to apply the term Ahmad earlier, and I would guess this is because GoaForce likes to have a term to distinsuish between Muhammad and the Manifestation, as he does between Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur and Baha'u'llah.

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We agree that there are humans, angels and, of course, Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) Himself.

We agree that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are not the Beloved. We agree that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are not angels. We do NOT agree, however, that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are both human.
We agree that Muhammad and Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur are human. We disagree as to whether there was an equivalent of Baha'u'llah present with Muhammad. I think there was, but that this appeared to a lesser degree unto men during His Dispensation, and was expressed either symbolically (as "Gabriel" or "Ahmad," perhaps). I would venture that you think that the Angel Gabriel was a completely seperate agent from Muhammad, and that they did not read each other or ever share a body.

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Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
According to Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) - I’ve said this before, so need not provide references now - Muhammad was just an ordinary man; that is to say, a human. There is not the slightest hint in the Qur’an that he was anything other. Only the Baha’i say otherwise; that he was not a human.
I think this is because Baha'is publicly speak in broad terms to all audiences, Christian, Muslim, and all others, and because Baha'is themselves do not each understand the nuance. That simple teaching works for most audiences, but it is not the Truth. Baha'u'llah's Writings have lots of nuance. And in that nuance, I infer heavily that both the Qur'anic claim that Muhammad was an ordinary man and that the Baha'i claim that the religious Founder of Islam was more than a common man are both valid.

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Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
If Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) is correct, then the Baha’i are in error. If the Baha’i are correct, then Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) is in error.
I think both the Baha'i and Allah are correct, but that both are in a position where they use human words in order for us to communicate the truth/Truth, and that human words fail to capture all of the nuance of the Truth. Allah's Words can convey it, but we cannot comprehend His Language, so He uses ours, which fails to express the Truth clearly and explicitly without requiring progressive revelation.

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Have a good day.
You too!

Last edited by Neal; 03-10-2016 at 08:03 AM.
 
Old 03-10-2016, 08:14 AM   #103
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Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
Hello Neal,

You’ve made a very telling remark: ‘Baha'u'llah is not human at all!’ If you don’t mind, I’d like to limit my reply to this one remark.

I assume that your reason for saying that Baha'u'llah is not human is because you believe him to be a ‘manifestation of God’. As you know, Baha'u'llah claimed that Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) was also a ‘manifestation of God’; which means - by your reckoning - that Muhammad is also not human. After all, what is true for one ‘manifestation’ is surely true for another.

We agree that there are humans, angels and, of course, Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) Himself.

We agree that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are not the Beloved. We agree that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are not angels. We do NOT agree, however, that Muhammad and Baha'u'llah are both human.

According to Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) - I’ve said this before, so need not provide references now - Muhammad was just an ordinary man; that is to say, a human. There is not the slightest hint in the Qur’an that he was anything other. Only the Baha’i say otherwise; that he was not a human.

If Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) is correct, then the Baha’i are in error. If the Baha’i are correct, then Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) is in error.

Who is correct?

Have a great day, and very best regards.

Paul
The way, Baha'is read scriptures might be different than what the mainstream Muslims read them.

We believe that, we should not just refer to only one or two verse of Quran that says Muhammad is but a man. We should also read the verses that says, Muhammad is Light, He is a role model for the whole humanity, and He is a person with sublime qualities. We should also read verse that says, Jesus was Spirit of God.

According to these verses, Muhammad was a man like us and He was a man that was not like us! Can I call other people "Light of the World"? Can I call myself the role model for humanity? Can I call myself a person with sublime qualities? Can I say, I am Spirit of God?

Therefore, His holiness Baha'u'llah taught us, the Messengers have a twofold stations. One is the station that they are like man. The other is the station related to their Holy Nature.


Moreover, I cannot just ignore, the verses of Bible, that says, Jesus and God were one. Jesus was in God and God was in Jesus. I cannot ignore the verses of Bible that says, Noah and Job were perfect Man, without sin or error.
I have already quoted, the Hadithes from Sunni and other sects, indicating that shows the oneness of God and His prophet.

Last edited by InvestigateTruth; 03-10-2016 at 08:17 AM.
 
Old 03-10-2016, 08:51 AM   #104
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Originally Posted by InvestigateTruth View Post
We believe that, we should not just refer to only one or two verse of Quran that says Muhammad is but a man. We should also read the verses that says, Muhammad is Light, He is a role model for the whole humanity, and He is a person with sublime qualities. We should also read verse that says, Jesus was Spirit of God.

According to these verses, Muhammad was a man like us and He was a man that was not like us! Can I call other people "Light of the World"? Can I call myself the role model for humanity? Can I call myself a person with sublime qualities? Can I say, I am Spirit of God?
Indeed, I know a Christian who knows 14 languages, including Aramaic, Greek and some Arabic. He searched for God and accepted Jesus, but rejects Muhammad because he finds "Muhammad's Qur'an theologically inconsistent" because Muhammad indicated "Jesus was both a mere prophet, and yet clearly more due to the divine qualities Muhammad recognized." He thought this meant Muhammad was inconsistent and a charlatan. I believe it is because there is a Truth that the words of the Qur'an could not capture in explicit terms. (Sadly, because he has "concluded Muhammad was theologically unsound and therefore lying," this friend won't read any of Baha'u'llah's works, since he knows that Baha'u'llah believed in the Qur'an.)

Investigate Truth, I know you have shared those quotes with Niblo previously, but I would not know where. I am currently studying the Qur'an on Thursdays, but the study group was canceled for this particular evening. I would love to explore the Surah's Niblo has shared, alongside the ones you are referring to, especially the one that says Muhammad is a "Light." Would you mind telling me the Surah and Ayat numbers?

Last edited by Neal; 03-10-2016 at 08:58 AM.
 
Old 03-10-2016, 09:26 AM   #105
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Hi Neal, please see post #42.
 
Old 03-10-2016, 10:23 AM   #106
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Originally Posted by Neal View Post
Indeed, I know a Christian who knows 14 languages, including Aramaic, Greek and some Arabic. He searched for God and accepted Jesus, but rejects Muhammad because he finds "Muhammad's Qur'an theologically inconsistent" because Muhammad indicated "Jesus was both a mere prophet, and yet clearly more due to the divine qualities Muhammad recognized." He thought this meant Muhammad was inconsistent and a charlatan. I believe it is because there is a Truth that the words of the Qur'an could not capture in explicit terms. (Sadly, because he has "concluded Muhammad was theologically unsound and therefore lying," this friend won't read any of Baha'u'llah's works, since he knows that Baha'u'llah believed in the Qur'an.)

Investigate Truth, I know you have shared those quotes with Niblo previously, but I would not know where. I am currently studying the Qur'an on Thursdays, but the study group was canceled for this particular evening. I would love to explore the Surah's Niblo has shared, alongside the ones you are referring to, especially the one that says Muhammad is a "Light." Would you mind telling me the Surah and Ayat numbers?
5:15

Got to dash....wife on the way home...and assigned tasks not yet done! DV will come back on this tomo.

Sleep well!

Paul
 
Old 03-11-2016, 02:21 AM   #107
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I would love to explore the Surah's Niblo has shared, alongside the ones you are referring to, especially the one that says Muhammad is a "Light." Would you mind telling me the Surah and Ayat numbers?
Hello Neal.

It is important to note that an Arabic word may have a range of meanings, depending on the context.

The triliteral root ‘nūn wāw rā’, from which the word ‘light’ is derived, occurs one hundred and ninety-four times in the Qur’an, in three derived forms.

This is the verse I referred to yesterday: ‘People of the Book, Our Messenger has come to make clear to you much of what you have kept hidden of the Scripture, and to overlook much (that you have done). A light (nūrun) has now come to you from Allāh, and a Scripture making things clear, with which Allāh guides to the ways of peace those who follow what pleases Him, bringing them from darkness out into the light (l-nūri), by His will, and guiding them to a straight path.’ (Al-Ma’ida: 15).

There are some who interpret this verse to mean that Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) is the light referred to. But this is not the consensus of the scholars.

The truth becomes clearer when we read: ‘Allāh is the light (nūrun) of the heavens and earth. His light (nūrin) is like this: there is a niche, and in it a lamp, the lamp inside a glass, a glass like a glittering star, fuelled from a blessed olive tree from neither east nor west, whose oil glows even when no fire (nūrun) touches it - light (nūrun) upon light (nūrin) - Allāh guides whoever He will to his light (nūrin); Allāh draws such comparisons for people; Allāh has full knowledge of everything.’ (Al-Nur: 35); or again: ‘They try to extinguish Allāh’s light (nūra) with their mouths, but Allāh insists on bringing His light (nūrahu) to its fullness, even if the disbelievers hate it.’ (Al-Tawba: 32); and finally: ‘Who could be more wrong than someone who invents lies against Allāh when called to submit to Him? Allāh does not guide the wrong-doers: they wish to put out His light (nūrihi) with their mouths. But He will perfect His light (nūrihi ), even though the disbelievers hate it. It is He who sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth to show that it is above all (other) religions, even though the idolaters hate it.’ (Al-Saff: 7-9).

Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) says: ‘Prophet, We have sent you as a witness, as a bearer of good news and warning, as one who calls people to Allāh by His leave, as an enlightening (munīrin) lamp.’ (Al-Ahzab: 45-46).

It is very clear from all of the above verses that the Message is everything. The Message is the light. The Messenger is but a carrier of the light; he is not the light itself.

Have a good day, and very best regards.

Paul

Last edited by Niblo; 03-11-2016 at 03:28 AM.
 
Old 03-11-2016, 08:18 AM   #108
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GoaForce,

It occurs to me that in the Qur'an, Muhammad is distinguished from the "Light" (Allah), and is "only a messenger," or "a lamp." When Allah spoke, it is Scripture, and when Muhammad spoke, it is hadith. But with the Bab and Baha'u'llah, the Voice of God and the voice of the Prophet appear in the same texts. Baha'is refer to these men as Manifestations of God.

Do you think that the difference between a "prophet" and a "Manifestation" is that Allah has allowed the distinguishing barrier of Scripture, between His Voice and theirs, to be blurred? Could this be how Muhammad was "the end of the line of prophets," but the Bab and Baha'u'llah can continue the line of revelation? That is, is the old notion of "prophet" no longer applicable, now that the Manifestation makes does not distinguish between its stations?

Last edited by Neal; 03-11-2016 at 08:20 AM.
 
Old 03-11-2016, 08:29 AM   #109
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Originally Posted by Neal View Post
GoaForce,

It occurs to me that in the Qur'an, Muhammad is distinguished from the "Light" (Allah), and is "only a messenger," or "a lamp." When Allah spoke, it is Scripture, and when Muhammad spoke, it is hadith. But with the Bab and Baha'u'llah, the Voice of God and the voice of the Prophet appear in the same texts. Baha'is refer to these men as Manifestations of God.

Do you think that the difference between a "prophet" and a "Manifestation" is that Allah has allowed the distinguishing barrier of Scripture, between His Voice and theirs, to be blurred? Could this be how Muhammad was "the end of the line of prophets," but the Bab and Baha'u'llah can continue the line of revelation? That is, is the old notion of "prophet" no longer applicable, now that the Manifestation makes does not distinguish between its stations?

That is a good point.
In each Age, the mode that the Prophet coveyed the message has been different.

For example to Moses God spoke directly, according to Quran.

To Muhammad, God did not speak directly to convey Quran verses, but He conveyed the Message through an Angel, then Muhammad recited it.

But, as prophecied in Quran, in this Revelation, God Himself came down, and spoke.
 
Old 03-11-2016, 08:34 AM   #110
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Originally Posted by Niblo View Post
Hello Neal.

It is important to note that an Arabic word may have a range of meanings, depending on the context.

The triliteral root ‘nūn wāw rā’, from which the word ‘light’ is derived, occurs one hundred and ninety-four times in the Qur’an, in three derived forms.

This is the verse I referred to yesterday: ‘People of the Book, Our Messenger has come to make clear to you much of what you have kept hidden of the Scripture, and to overlook much (that you have done). A light (nūrun) has now come to you from Allāh, and a Scripture making things clear, with which Allāh guides to the ways of peace those who follow what pleases Him, bringing them from darkness out into the light (l-nūri), by His will, and guiding them to a straight path.’ (Al-Ma’ida: 15).

There are some who interpret this verse to mean that Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) is the light referred to. But this is not the consensus of the scholars.

The truth becomes clearer when we read: ‘Allāh is the light (nūrun) of the heavens and earth. His light (nūrin) is like this: there is a niche, and in it a lamp, the lamp inside a glass, a glass like a glittering star, fuelled from a blessed olive tree from neither east nor west, whose oil glows even when no fire (nūrun) touches it - light (nūrun) upon light (nūrin) - Allāh guides whoever He will to his light (nūrin); Allāh draws such comparisons for people; Allāh has full knowledge of everything.’ (Al-Nur: 35); or again: ‘They try to extinguish Allāh’s light (nūra) with their mouths, but Allāh insists on bringing His light (nūrahu) to its fullness, even if the disbelievers hate it.’ (Al-Tawba: 32); and finally: ‘Who could be more wrong than someone who invents lies against Allāh when called to submit to Him? Allāh does not guide the wrong-doers: they wish to put out His light (nūrihi) with their mouths. But He will perfect His light (nūrihi ), even though the disbelievers hate it. It is He who sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth to show that it is above all (other) religions, even though the idolaters hate it.’ (Al-Saff: 7-9).

Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) says: ‘Prophet, We have sent you as a witness, as a bearer of good news and warning, as one who calls people to Allāh by His leave, as an enlightening (munīrin) lamp.’ (Al-Ahzab: 45-46).

It is very clear from all of the above verses that the Message is everything. The Message is the light. The Messenger is but a carrier of the light; he is not the light itself.

Have a good day, and very best regards.

Paul
Hello!

Technically speaking the Lamp manifests the Light.

Allah is the Light, and Muhammad is the the Lamp that Manifests the Light.

Then what would you say about this verse:

"Then Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." John 8:12

Last edited by InvestigateTruth; 03-11-2016 at 08:40 AM.
 
Old 03-11-2016, 08:37 AM   #111
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Greetings

Quote:
Do you think that the difference between a "prophet" and a "Manifestation" is that Allah has allowed the distinguishing barrier of Scripture, between His Voice and theirs, to be blurred?
Manifestations of God are obviously simple men. They are born ignorant, must receive education, and then educate themselves. They learn the Scriptures with easiness, and then they display talent to become more spiritual. They ask God that His will be accomplished, but they have their own wishes. Baha'u'llah made the wish to die as a martyr, but that wish was not granted to him.

Quote:
Could this be how Muhammad was "the end of the line of prophets," but the Bab and Baha'u'llah can continue the line of revelation?
The line becomes a circle.

Quote:
That is, is the old notion of "prophet" no longer applicable, now that the Manifestation makes does not distinguish between its stations?
My opinion is : what we knew of the Prophet from the Quran and the Bible is still valid. God does not lie.
However, a new knowledge has been unlocked. It shall not supersede our former comprehension of prophethood, but complete and extends it.

Now, you underline an ambiguity, that is " Allah has allowed the distinguishing barrier of Scripture, between His Voice and theirs, to be blurred'.

I don't agree with the last word of this sentence.

The following text comes from a Tunisian Baha'i. I translated it from French :

"Those who accept Jesus in their heart are guided toward the Union with God and those who accept Muhammad in their heart are guided toward Faithfulness to God.

Jesus is the prophet who best mastered the Union with God, to the point that he is called the "Spirit of God". Therefore it is most natural that it is him who spiritually guide human beings toward their re-birth and alongside the path to the Union with God. Therefore, those who accept Jesus into their heart are guided toward the Union to God and those who accept Muhammad in their heart are guided toward Faithfulness to God. The ideal would be to accept both, as Baha'u'llah did."


This is pretty enlightening.
 
Old 03-11-2016, 08:48 AM   #112
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Niblo,

In the other message board, "Manifestation as man," I used a few of those quotes and compared them with a text by Abdu'l-Baha. What I took from that exploration is that Baha'is is don't believe the Light of God comes from the Prophet, but that the Light of Allah is as the light in the lamp, the Holy Prophet is as the lamp glass, and the human prophet is as the niche that holds the glass and frames the Light that shines. Altogether, the lamp is the Manifestation of God. If a man did not have the glass component of his lamp, the Light would not shine through them. An ordinary man is made of metal, and does reflect light, but Holy Being can be transparent and allow the Light to shed unhindered.

Thinking about this makes me want to ask, do you think that Gabriel was the channel by which Muhammad could receive God's Light?
 
Old 03-11-2016, 08:57 AM   #113
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The line becomes a circle.
LOL. Oh, GoaForce...

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Originally Posted by GoaForce View Post
My opinion is : what we knew of the Prophet from the Quran and the Bible is still valid. God does not lie.
However, a new knowledge has been unlocked. It shall not supersede our former comprehension of prophethood, but complete and extends it.

Now, you underline an ambiguity, that is " Allah has allowed the distinguishing barrier of Scripture, between His Voice and theirs, to be blurred'.

I don't agree with the last word of this sentence.
So would a better phrasing be, "Allah has allowed the distinguished forms of Scripture, between His Voice and the voice of the prophet, to converge"?
 
Old 03-14-2016, 03:01 PM   #114
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Found this gem today while studying the Seven Valleys!

'And I praise and glorify the first sea which hath branched from the ocean of the Divine Essence, and the first morn which hath glowed from the Horizon of Oneness, and the first sun which hath risen in the Heaven of Eternity, and the first fire which was lit from the Lamp of Preexistence in the lantern of singleness: He who was Aḥmad in the kingdom of the exalted ones, and Muḥammad amongst the concourse of the near ones, and Maḥmúd in the realm of the sincere ones. “…by whichsoever (name) ye will, invoke Him: He hath most excellent names” in the hearts of those who know. And upon His household and companions be abundant and abiding and eternal peace!'

Bahá'u'lláh Himself uses two different lamps/lanterns to distinguish between the Light of Allah and the light of Muhammad, but show that the light of Muhammad is lit by Allah

Last edited by Neal; 03-14-2016 at 03:04 PM.
 
Old 03-14-2016, 04:11 PM   #115
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Found this gem today while studying the Seven Valleys!

'And I praise and glorify the first sea which hath branched from the ocean of the Divine Essence, and the first morn which hath glowed from the Horizon of Oneness, and the first sun which hath risen in the Heaven of Eternity, and the first fire which was lit from the Lamp of Preexistence in the lantern of singleness: He who was Aḥmad in the kingdom of the exalted ones, and Muḥammad amongst the concourse of the near ones, and Maḥmúd in the realm of the sincere ones. “…by whichsoever (name) ye will, invoke Him: He hath most excellent names” in the hearts of those who know. And upon His household and companions be abundant and abiding and eternal peace!'

Bahá'u'lláh Himself uses two different lamps/lanterns to distinguish between the Light of Allah and the light of Muhammad, but show that the light of Muhammad is lit by Allah
Rumi wrote in one of His poems:

"The name of Ahmad is the name of all the prophets: when the hundred comes (is counted), ninety is with us as well."

Rumi's Masnavi - The name of Ahmad is the name of all the prophets: when the hundred comes (is counted), ninety is with us as well.

What is your take on Rumi's verse?

I think He is speaking of unity and Oneness of All Prophets. If the 100th Prophet came, the 90th prophet is with us too. Since they are all one and the same Spirit. So, the 100th one is the return of 90th one.
 
Old 03-14-2016, 04:20 PM   #116
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Originally Posted by InvestigateTruth View Post
Rumi wrote in one of His poems:

"The name of Ahmad is the name of all the prophets: when the hundred comes (is counted), ninety is with us as well."

Rumi's Masnavi - The name of Ahmad is the name of all the prophets: when the hundred comes (is counted), ninety is with us as well.

What is your take on Rumi's verse?

I think He is speaking of unity and Oneness of All Prophets. If the 100th Prophet came, the 90th prophet is with us too. Since they are all one and the same Spirit. So, the 100th one is the return of 90th one.
Isn't he rather talking about the hundred names of God?

gnat
 
Old 03-14-2016, 04:33 PM   #117
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Isn't he rather talking about the hundred names of God?

gnat
Very possible. The 100th is Baha. So when Baha comes, the previous Prophets have also returned.


Said Amirul Momineen (a.s.) on the pulpit, “A man shall come from my progeny in the latter days; he will be white with a touch of red, of a broad abdomen, with legs of ample width, and of high shoulders. On his back are two signs, one sign of the color of his skin and another like the sign of the Messenger (a.s.). He has two names. One name will be hidden and the other, proclaimed. The one that will be hidden is Ahmad and the one that will be announced is Muhammad.
 
Old 03-15-2016, 01:09 AM   #118
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Rumi is exactly talking about Unity of all messengers of God in that poem. it is one of his common ideas all through Masnavi. as in another line in the same poem he says:

"Know that these words are as the skin (rind), and the meaning is (as) the kernel; these words are as the form, and the meaning is like the spirit."

so he means words and names are but a surface. and he then says the one who can move beyond the surface will be able to hear the message of God.
 
Old 03-16-2016, 07:53 AM   #119
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Hello Neal.

I trust you are well and happy.

You appear to be under the impression that we are merely ‘debating semantics’, as though that were an undesirable practice. Semantics is the study of the meanings of words and phrases in language. In the field of theology, precision of language and clarity of meaning are essential; otherwise we might end up believing that pigs can fly; or that humans are not truly human; or that a man can change his essential nature merely by adopting a fanciful nom de plume.

You say that you have never seen Baha'u'llah claim that Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) is a ‘Manifestation of God.’ In not so few words, of course, but how about this:

‘If thou be of the inmates of this city within the ocean of divine unity, thou wilt view all the Prophets and Messengers of God as one soul and one body, as one light and one spirit, in such wise that the first among them would be last and the last would be first. For they have all arisen to proclaim His Cause and have established the laws of divine wisdom. They are, one and all, the Manifestations of His Self, the Repositories of His might, the Treasuries of His Revelation, the Dawning-Places of His splendour, and the Daysprings of His light. Through them are manifested the signs of sanctity in the realities of all things and the tokens of oneness in the essences of all beings. Through them are revealed the elements of glorification in the heavenly realities and the exponents of praise in the eternal essences. From them hath all creation proceeded and unto them shall return all that hath been mentioned. And since in their inmost Beings they are the same Luminaries and the self-same Mysteries, thou shouldst view their outward conditions in the same light, that thou mayest recognize them all as one Being, nay, find them united in their words, speech, and utterance.’ (Baha’u’llah: ‘Gems of Divine Mysteries’; number 44).

Do I think that: ‘The Angel Gabriel (is) a completely separate agent from Muhammad, (or) that they did not read each other or ever share a body?’

Yes, the two are ‘completely separate agents’, and no, they never shared a body. I’m not sure what you mean by ‘they did not read each other’.

You write: ‘We agree that Muhammad and Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur are human. We disagree as to whether there was an equivalent of Baha'u'llah present with Muhammad. I think there was, but that this appeared to a lesser degree unto men during His Dispensation, and was expressed either symbolically (as ‘Gabriel’ or ‘Ahmad’, perhaps).

The name ‘Ahmad’ when applied to the Prophet is not, and never has been, the equivalent of ‘Baha’u’llah’, as imagined by the Baha’i. It is not considered by the Muslims to be a ‘nature’ changing name. It is merely a descriptive name, meaning ‘he who is highly praised’ (for his character).

I wrote: ‘According to Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) - I’ve said this before, so need not provide references now - Muhammad was just an ordinary man; that is to say, a human. There is not the slightest hint in the Qur’an that he was anything other. Only the Baha’i say otherwise; that he was not a human…….. If Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) is correct, then the Baha’i are in error. If the Baha’i are correct, then Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla) is in error.’

You replied: ‘I think both the Baha'i and Allah are correct.’

How come? The descriptives ‘human’ and ‘not human’ are mutually exclusive. An object is either human or it is not. Your belief that the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) and Mirza Husayn Ali (aka ‘Baha’u’llah’) were both human and non-human is the finest example of doublethink I have ever seen outside of Orwell’s ‘1984’.

Doublethink: ‘The power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them…....to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies….’

Is this what it takes to be a Baha’i (in the context of our conversation)?

You go on to say: ‘…….but that both (‘Baha’u’llah’and Allah) are in a position where they use human words in order for us to communicate the truth/Truth, and that human words fail to capture all of the nuance of the Truth. Allah's Words can convey it, but we cannot comprehend His Language, so He uses ours, which fails to express the Truth clearly and explicitly without requiring progressive revelation.

The Muslims have no problem when it comes to comprehending Allāh (Subḥānahu ūta'āla)’s language in this context: The Prophet is just a human, nothing more! It follows that any person who is less than a Prophet is also just a human. Only the power of doublethink would have one believe otherwise!

Have a great day and very best regards.

Paul
 
Old 03-16-2016, 10:00 AM   #120
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Hello there.

Quote:
If Baha'is distinguished Baha'u'llah from Mirza Husayn Ali of Nur, in a way comparable to how Gabriel is distinguished from the Prophet, would your noted difference between a prophet and a Manifestation still exist?
I agree with Niblo, the comparison is inappropriate IMO. Gabriel belongs to the angelic realm, while the Manifestation points to a divino-human reality. And I agree with that as well :

Quote:
they never shared a body.
From what I understand, the core of the Baha'i Faith is to make of the body of the believer a human temple, and to welcome in its autel the Glory of God (making of them "Baha'is", people of Glory.) On the other hand, Gabriel is an archangel who can work with humans as an outer agent.

Quote:
There is not the slightest hint in the Qur’an that he was anything other. Only the Baha’i say otherwise; that he was not a human……..
Do Baha'is claim that Muhammad was not a human ? They don't AFAIK. But they do believe that some Prophets have attained a certain divino-human station that enables them to 'renew the world of Creation' through God's grace.

Quote:
How come? The descriptives ‘human’ and ‘not human’ are mutually exclusive.
In the Quran, that is, but not as much as in the Torah, the Gospel and the Baha'i Writings.

Quote:
An object is either human or it is not.
This sentence forgets an important reality. There are actually two forms of humanity : animal-leaning humanity and God-leaning humanity.

Quote:
Doublethink
Doublethinking is the product of unclear ideas, or of an unclear mind. Here I tend to agree with Niblo that if that edgy concept of Manifestation is not completely mastered (I myself struggle with that concept), the danger of a doublethinking (id est : intellectual misconstruction) is real.

Thanks for pointing out these difficulties Paul. They make me realize that I am not fully satisfied with my current understanding of this (very interesting) concept.

Regards,

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