Bahai Forums

Go Back   Baha'i Forums > Baha'i Forums > Baha'i Mysticism

Baha'i Mysticism Baha'i Mysticism and Spirituality


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-01-2017, 10:57 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Joined: Oct 2017
From: Zanesville, Ohio
Posts: 21
The Mystic Wayfarer

In the mid 90's, my introduction to the internet was through my purchase of a "webTV"; very much like a PC, only not as expensive for the times, using a television for a screen and not having its own memory bank. It depended on the webTV server.

Therein, as a Baha'i, the chat room Talk City was discovered, upon which was an open Baha'i internet fireside. As an isolated believer, this seemed a godsend in compliance with what had been foretold by the Guardian, Shoghi Effendi.

My first chat, having a Baha'i moderator as the host, lead toward discussing the mystical aspect of the Faith, as such was the path that did lead to my personal declaration of faith (membership in the Baha'i Faith).

Then came the hammer !!! He said there were no mystics in the Baha'i Faith and to drop the subject. My first thought ..... he was a westerner and had no concept of the Seven Valleys and the Four Valleys. This ended my involvement with the internet fireside chat.

A few years later, after having obtained a PC, Planet Baha'i was discovered while surfing the internet. This allowed for the topic to be introduced once again, although the host, Dale, was more open to the concept. Several believers were adamant in their opinion that mysticism had no place in the Baha'i Faith. Hence, after ruffling many feathers, the Baha'i Mystics Forum was created. This evolved into a website called Millennial Mystics after approval and advisement by the Universal House of Justice.

Today, mystic wayfarers abound in the Faith. West, North, East, and South many can be found. The following was a webpage in answer to the question:
Are there mystics in the Baha'i Faith? It has a discourse on the differences between a "mystic" in the world, and a Baha'i wayfarer.

Mystic Wayfarers

Best regards to all,
Zo
 
Join Baha'i Forums


Welcome to Baha'i Forums, an open Baha'i Faith community! We welcome everyone and the community is free to join so register today and become part of the Baha'i Forums family!


Old 11-05-2017, 08:22 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Pollwr's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
From: earth
Posts: 450
An interesting topic. There are so many words that have been around for hundreds of years, their meaning can take on different nuances and a lot of people experience absolute certainty as to what they mean in their own mind then get into dispute with others when the word is used. Sometimes the person who is the other half of the discussion is understanding the word as something else entirely or something subtly different. "Mystic" is one of these words as is "Prophet" in my experience.

Can I ask what you mean by "mystic"?

I find this interesting and confusing. I came to the Faith many many years ago feeling driven by logic and reason and a belief in God that I could not shake off how ever hard I tried (and I tried). I have found much that is mystical in the Faith though I wouldn't say I understand it very well.
 
Old 11-05-2017, 06:21 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Joined: Oct 2017
From: Zanesville, Ohio
Posts: 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pollwr View Post
An interesting topic. There are so many words that have been around for hundreds of years, their meaning can take on different nuances and a lot of people experience absolute certainty as to what they mean in their own mind then get into dispute with others when the word is used. Sometimes the person who is the other half of the discussion is understanding the word as something else entirely or something subtly different. "Mystic" is one of these words as is "Prophet" in my experience.

Zo - "In the study of the Baha'i Writings, we find an explanation in the Valley of Unity by Baha'u'llah, and again, with more emphasis between kinds of believers in the Four Valleys."

Can I ask what you mean by "mystic"?

I find this interesting and confusing. I came to the Faith many many years ago feeling driven by logic and reason and a belief in God that I could not shake off how ever hard I tried (and I tried). I have found much that is mystical in the Faith though I wouldn't say I understand it very well.

Zo -"Herein is a dissertation, with footnotes, as available in mysticwayfarers.org :" (click on the link below)

Mystic Wayfarers
Allah-u-Abha,
Zo

Last edited by MohlerFC; 11-05-2017 at 06:30 PM. Reason: adding link
 
Old 11-06-2017, 04:12 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Pollwr's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
From: earth
Posts: 450
Thank you for your reply. I read with interest and have always loved "The seven valleys" and "The Hidden Words", since I was introduced to them in Childrens' class.

The second of these hidden words came to mind when I read your web page. I am not sure why, but maybe as something beyond my understanding but that is clearly full of meaning to be found, then when I found it, I saw the hidden word before:

O SON OF WORLDLINESS!
Pleasant is the realm of being, wert thou to attain thereto; glorious is the domain of eternity, shouldst thou pass beyond the world of mortality; sweet is the holy ecstasy if thou drinkest of the mystic chalice from the hands of the celestial Youth. Shouldst thou attain this station, thou wouldst be freed from destruction and death, from toil and sin.

71. O MY FRIENDS!
Call ye to mind that covenant ye have entered into with Me upon Mount Paran, situate within the hallowed precincts of Zaman. I have taken to witness the concourse on high and the dwellers in the city of eternity, yet now none do I find faithful unto the covenant. Of a certainty pride and rebellion have effaced it from the hearts, in such wise that no trace thereof remaineth. Yet knowing this, I waited and disclosed it not.

(Baha'u'llah, The Persian Hidden Words)
 
Old 11-07-2017, 11:32 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Joined: Oct 2017
From: Zanesville, Ohio
Posts: 21
Pollwr,

1. O YE PEOPLE THAT HAVE MINDS TO KNOW AND EARS TO HEAR!
The first call of the Beloved is this:
O mystic nightingale!
Abide not but in the rose-garden of the spirit.
O messenger of the Solomon of love!
Seek thou no shelter except in the Sheba of the well-beloved,
and O immortal phoenix! dwell not save on the mount of faithfulness.

Therein is thy habitation,
if on the wings of thy soul
thou soarest to the realm of the infinite
and seekest to attain thy goal.

(Baha'u'llah, The Persian Hidden Words)

Shall we stand in Wonderment
Or seek His Grace
That from the Summit look
And see His Face

Last edited by MohlerFC; 11-07-2017 at 11:50 PM.
 
Old 11-08-2017, 09:50 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Walrus's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2014
From: Wisconsin
Posts: 682
I think the idea that the Baha'i Faith contains no "mystics" just comes from the fact the Faith sort of radically changes the idea of what a "mystic" is.

Prior to this a "mystic" within a religion was typically seen as someone who had hidden or secret knowledge of religion. A mystic, like a Sufi or a Hermeticist, would seek out a path of detachment and nearness to God through secretive knowledge given to them from their membership in their Sufi or Hermetic Order.

Sufi Orders claimed to have secret knowledge originally taught to the Order's founder by teachers who were in turn taught by a line of teachers teaching these secret teachings spanning all the way back to Muhammad.

Hermetic Orders kept their knowledge secret more simply due to the fact that some of their beliefs were (principally the belief in a Greek prophet known as Hermes Trismegistus), at best, unconfirmed by the Catholic Church and, at worst, considered heresy.

So "mysticism" and "mystics" for the longest period of time carried with it the implication of secret knowledge. Things that were hidden from the common person, and needed to be taught by a secret Mystic Order that had preserved these mystic beliefs.

Then comes Baha'u'llah.

Baha'u'llah could conceivably be said to both confirm and deny the idea of mysticism.

On one hand, he pretty much confirms a lot of the teachings held by mystic sects of Christianity and Islam, at the very least, confirming the Sufi's understanding of the path of detachment and speaking in Sufi terms about the subject (the Seven Valleys), as well as confirming Hermes Trismegistus' status as a Prophet of God in a writing. So we have two-fold a confirmation of Sufi and Hermetic belief!! A confirmation that the mystic sects of Christianity and Islam were indeed true (or at least, have aspects of truth)!!

But then we also have Baha'u'llah codifying and establishing these things in official scriptural writings. In other words, these beliefs are no longer hidden, but are open to all persons to read and learn and understand.

So Baha'u'llah has both confirmed the beliefs of the mystics, and has rejected their aspect of secrecy. Thus, many Baha'is will say there is not "mysticism" within the Baha'i Faith, as while the beliefs of mystics have been confirmed, they have been sort of "demystified" and are now open for everyone to learn. We no longer need Sufi Orders or Hermetic Societies to learn these deep truths and mysteries, we have these things elaborated on in official canon.

A "mystic" in the modern Baha'i sense is a seeker hoping to unravel the mysteries in the scriptures. They are no longer a person seeking out secret knowledge to advance their spiritual progress. Hence, the Baha'i Mystic is a different type of mystic from the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Mystics, who all promote the idea of secret knowledge.

In short, one could say "The Hidden Words are no longer hidden".

Last edited by Walrus; 11-08-2017 at 09:55 AM.
 
Old 11-08-2017, 11:31 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Joined: Oct 2017
From: Zanesville, Ohio
Posts: 21
Walrus,

Which would lead the one who recognizes Him in this Day unto a Divine Science, as spoken by 'Abdu'l Baha in the Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 138. (click link below)

ADIVINESCIENCE.ORG
 
Reply

  Baha'i Forums > Baha'i Forums > Baha'i Mysticism

Tags
mystic, wayfarer



Thread Tools
Display Modes



Facebook @bahaiforums RSS


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
Copyright © 2006 - 2017 Bahai Forums. All rights reserved.