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Old 02-28-2016, 12:11 AM   #1
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Baha'i Dispensation 500,000 yrs

Moved this conversation to it's own thread for GoaForce's sake.

Larry, continuing where you left off: it will probably forever elude me how 10 days and 20 days pale to 30 days by such a degree, and 30 days can quantify to 500,000+ years in particular. Do you (or any other forum members) gleaned how a month could vary so greatly in magnitude from 20 days? I am somewhat familiar with the 42 months = time times and a half = 1260 years math. Does anyone see a new formula from Larry's quote from the other thread?
 
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Old 02-28-2016, 12:14 AM   #2
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For reference:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Roofener View Post
Neal: In his Dispensation of Baha’u’llah treatise, Shoghi Effendi writes, quoting ‘Abdu’l-Baha who specifically mentions the “Baha’i cycle – a cycle that must extend over a period of at least five hundred thousand years.” Perhaps this will provide the validity you are seeking related to the 500,000 years.

As a further testimony to the greatness of the Revelation identified with Bahá'u'lláh may be cited the following extracts from a Tablet addressed by `Abdu'l-Bahá to an eminent Zoroastrian follower of the Faith: "Thou hadst written that in the sacred books of the followers of Zoroaster it is written that in the latter days, in three separate Dispensations, the sun must needs be brought to a standstill. In the first Dispensation, it is predicted, the sun will remain motionless for ten days; in the second for twice that time; in the third for no less than one whole month. The interpretation of this prophecy is this: the first Dispensation to which it refers is the Muhammadan Dispensation during which the Sun of Truth stood still for ten days. Each day is reckoned as one century. The Muhammadan Dispensation must have, therefore, lasted no less than one thousand years, which is precisely the period that has elapsed from the setting of the Star of the Imámate to the advent of the Dispensation proclaimed by the Báb. The second Dispensation referred to in this prophecy is the one inaugurated by the Báb Himself, which began in the year 1260 A.H. and was brought to a close in the year 1280 A.H. As to the third Dispensation--the Revelation proclaimed by Bahá'u'lláh--inasmuch as the Sun of Truth when attaining that station shineth in the plenitude of its meridian splendor its duration hath been fixed for a period of one whole month, which is the maximum time taken by the sun to pass through a sign of the Zodiac. From this thou canst imagine the magnitude of the Bahá'í cycle-- a cycle that must extend over a period of at least five hundred thousand years." (The World Order of Bahá'u'lláh, pp. 101-102)
 
Old 02-28-2016, 05:39 AM   #3
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Good morning Neal:

I agree that this is a very intriguing topic. I am not attempting evade your inquiry or to change the course of your new thread, but from my limited perspective (at this point in the dialog) the only persons qualified and capable of providing an adequate answer to your deeper inquiry would have been those appointed to the institution of the Guardianship, as they were to be the ones designated as the “Interpreter(s) of the Word of God”, those “specifically endowed with such power as (they) may need to reveal the purport and disclose the implications of the utterances of Baha’u’llah and of ‘Abdu’l-Baha . . .” (Shoghi Effendi, The Dispensation of Baha’u’llah) Consider that Baha’u’llah Himself revealed, “Know assuredly that just as thou firmly believest that the Word of God, exalted be His glory, endureth for ever, thou must, likewise, believe with undoubting faith that its meaning can never be exhausted. They who are its appointed interpreters, they whose hearts are the repositories of its secrets, are, however, the only ones who can comprehend its manifold wisdom. . . . How great the multitude of truths which the garment of words can never contain! How vast the number of such verities as no expression can adequately describe, whose significance can never be unfolded, and to which not even the remotest allusions can be made! How manifold are the truths which must remain unuttered until the appointed time is come! . . .” (Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah, LXXXIX) Unfortunately, the vacancy of the Seat of that institution deprives the Faith of continued authoritative progressive interpretation overtime to increase our understandings of topics such as this one.

Having made that point above, I too would invite knowledgeable individuals to provide their “individual interpretations” on this topic.

I will also provide another quote of ‘Abdu’l-Baha on the topic from the compilation titled The Foundations of World Unity. (Note: I am unsure if this specific quote has been documented as “authoritative” text) “Each one of the luminous bodies in this limitless firmament has a cycle of revolution which is of a different duration, and every one revolves in its own orbit, and again begins a new cycle. So the earth, every three hundred and sixty-five days, five hours, forty-eight minutes and a fraction, completes a revolution; and then it begins a new cycle, that is to say, the first cycle is again renewed. In the same way, for the whole universe, whether for the heavens or for men, there are cycles of great events, of important facts and occurrences. When a cycle is ended, a new cycle begins, and the old one, on account of the great events which take place, is completely forgotten, and not a trace or record of it will remain. As you see, we have no records of twenty thousand years ago, although we have before proved by argument that life on this earth is very ancient. It is not one hundred thousand, or two hundred thousand, or one million or two million years old; it is very ancient, and the ancient records and traces are entirely obliterated.
Each of the Divine Manifestations has likewise a cycle, and during the cycle his laws and commandments prevail and are performed. When his cycle is completed by the appearance of a new Manifestation, a new cycle begins. In this way cycles begin, end, and are renewed, until a universal cycle is completed in the world, when important events and great occurrences will take place which entirely efface every trace and every record of the past; then a new universal cycle begins in the world, for this universe has no beginning. We have before stated proofs and evidences concerning this subject; there is no need of repetition.
Briefly, we say a universal cycle in the world of existence signifies a long duration of time, and innumerable and incalculable periods and epochs. In such a cycle the Manifestations appear with splendor in the realm of the visible, until a great and universal Manifestation makes the world the center of his radiance. His appearance causes the world to attain to maturity, and the extension of his cycle is very great. Afterwards other Manifestations will arise under his shadow, who according to the needs of the time will renew certain commandments relating to material questions and affairs, while remaining under his shadow.

We are in the cycle which began with Adam, and its universal Manifestation is Bahá'u'lláh.”

I see the same topic has been discussed on Baha'i Forums previously, beginning 08/18/13: http://bahaiforums.com/teachings/9651-ages-cycles.html
 
Old 02-28-2016, 04:52 PM   #4
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Hi, Neal.

I don't if you're looking for an explanation, exactly. But, FWIW, here's this quote:

Quote:
"Abdu'l-Bahá has given no explanation regarding the 500,000 year period of the Bahá'í cycle. Individual believers are free to work out for themselves the explanation they desire, so long as they do not impose their views on others."

(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to an individual believer, July 10, 1939)
That said, here's one interesting idea that others have pointed out to me. We can compare the Adamic and Bahá'í Cycles using the ratio of their durations, which is roughly 6,000 years / 500,000 years = 6 years / 500 years. If we divide both the numerator and denominator by 8, we get (6/8 years) / (500/8 years) = (3/4 year) / (62.5 years). The interesting part is that 3/4 of a year is 9 months, the duration of human prenatal development, while 62.5 years is awfully close to the ages when many people retire.

So even though in one sense humanity is collectively transitioning to adulthood, from another perspective the birth of Bahá'u'lláh's Revelation is like the birth of a new humanity. And, perhaps, the Formative Age could be likened to childhood, and the Golden Age and beyond this Dispensation could be likened to humanity's adulthood.
 
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