Bahai Forums

Go Back   Baha'i Forums > Baha'i Forums > General Discussion

General Discussion Open Baha'i Discussion


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-10-2013, 05:26 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Joined: Dec 2010
From: Pittsburgh
Posts: 217
We as bahai's should worship God and God Alone.

I believe we should not worship, pray, bow down to anybody, messenger or not, idols, other than the one true God. It was handed to Moses with the ten commandment's, and I believe it is relevant even today. Yes Im a Bahai, and I believe the the message revealed by Bahaullah through his scriptures, but I believe we should never worship none other than god.
 
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 07-10-2013, 09:28 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Joined: May 2013
From: forest falls california
Posts: 1,773
Praying

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdef View Post
I believe we should not worship, pray, bow down to anybody, messenger or not, idols, other than the one true God. It was handed to Moses with the ten commandment's, and I believe it is relevant even today. Yes Im a Bahai, and I believe the the message revealed by Bahaullah through his scriptures, but I believe we should never worship none other than god.
>>> Honestly, for me, when I think of the word "God", I draw a complete blank. It is a sound that comes out of my mouth, and I'm clueless.
When I think of the Blessed Beauty, at least I have some understanding of Who He is, within the peanut shell of my mind. The following from Shoghi Effendi helps me to focus:

1489. Praying to Bahá’u’lláh
"You have asked whether our prayers go beyond Bahá’u’lláh: It all depends whether we pray to Him directly or through Him to God. We may do both, and also can pray directly to God, but our prayers would certainly be more effective and illuminating if they are addressed to Him through His Manifestation, Bahá’u’lláh.
"Under no circumstances, however, can we, while repeating the prayers, insert the name Bahá’u’lláh where the word 'God' is used. This would be tantamount to a blasphemy."
(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to an individual believer, October 14, 1937)

1490. Praying to Bahá’u’lláh—As the Door

"We cannot know God directly, but only through His Prophets. We can pray to Him realizing that through His Prophets we know Him, or we can address our prayer in thought to Bahá’u’lláh, not as God, but as the Door to our knowing God."

(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer: High Endeavors: Messages to Alaska, p. 71)
 
Old 07-10-2013, 11:13 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Joined: Mar 2011
From: us
Posts: 315
Rendering praise and thanksgiving to any of His chosen Ones is not only a great deed but a duty. Worshiping however must be done towards God and not His creation. Worshiping any one else, including His chosen Ones, Servants and exalted Ones is equal to worshiping the created as opposed to the Creator. Those who fail to realize this truth have failed to testify to the oneness and singleness of God.
 
Old 07-10-2013, 11:19 PM   #4
Member
 
Joined: May 2013
From: India
Posts: 33
worshiping god gives us spiritual power, it give us confidence. So, Worshipping God is not wrong
 
Old 07-11-2013, 08:34 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
BlinkeyBill's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2011
From: Quilimari,Chile
Posts: 4,213
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdef View Post
I believe we should not worship, pray, bow down to anybody, messenger or not, idols, other than the one true God. It was handed to Moses with the ten commandment's, and I believe it is relevant even today. Yes Im a Bahai, and I believe the the message revealed by Bahaullah through his scriptures, but I believe we should never worship none other than god.
Dear friend, I understand what you are saying, and yes agree, but :-)

As has already been said we may pray to Baha'u'llah or even Abdul-Baha giving us something to picture in our mind, as we weak humans tend to picture something in our mind. Any picture of God, would be an idol, or false idea, as God is beyond our feeble minds. So we are told to picture the Manifestation or some people as I do picture the resting place of Baha'u'llah in my mind as I pray to God or worship God. For yes only God do we worship.
 
Old 07-11-2013, 08:50 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
mytmouse57's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2012
From: United States
Posts: 601
I agree. Where Christianity went wrong -- at least in the vast majority of expressions of it we now see -- is that it became an institutionalized methodology of worshiping the personality of Jesus...

... rather than a means by which to follow Christ's example and teachings in order to draw nearer to God.
 
Old 07-11-2013, 03:00 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Joined: Dec 2010
From: Pittsburgh
Posts: 217
I believe we should never worship, or pray to other than god himself. Bottom line. This is actually expressed in the Bab's writings and prayers extensively. You see, I became a Bahai because of the oneness of god, and the progressive revelation theory revealed in the Bahai revelation. You see, I was a Catholic before, and I became a fan, to be simple, of the ten commandments, and I still read them, acknowledge them everyday. Then I was wondering, why are their different religions, and well, "which one is right" and having a deep questioning why are their different major religions. And bang, Bahaullah was born into my life. So I read the prayers, the scriptures, and it all made sense. If it didn't acknowledge the ten commandments, I would have never became a Bahai. Anyways, each prayer revealed by the Bab, Bahaullah, are in worship of the one true god. If they weren't I would have never became a Bahai.. Because again, Im a fan of the ten commandments and number two strictly says “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the LORD your God am a jealous God,visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments". So, we as Bahai's should only worship, and pray to the one true God. Bahaullah was a mere human, and so were the rest of his messengers, to pray or worship them is nonsense.
 
Old 07-11-2013, 03:30 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
cire perdue's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2010
From: Louisiana
Posts: 1,758
Dear Mdef, I think this is already understood and practiced by the Baha'i Faith. We need to remember though that without the Manifestations which are a higher station than mankind,we would not have a symbol among us for God, but the Manifestations which are human are not God. You are correct. Others may not be as acutely aware of this as you are at this time, but you are not expressing new thoughts as the quotes from the Guardian relate to your idea. Our Houses of Worship have no images.

There will be no Baha'i murals in our holy places. I hope you will not find this a stumbling block of some kind, but look beyond it to the vast scope of knowledge that has been lovingly imparted to us from Moses, Others, and Baha'u'llah. It has NOT occurred to me that Baha'is worship the Manifestations, only God. However these Mirrors are a mercy so that we can worship the Unknowable, the Inacessible. cp
 
Old 07-11-2013, 03:31 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
mytmouse57's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2012
From: United States
Posts: 601
I think the writings indicate, while we should worship God alone, we can also call upon the concourse on High -- as well as just about anybody who has passed on, for help.

As we pray for those who have gone on, they can also pray for us.

I sometimes ask the late Bill Sears for advice, so to speak.
 
Old 07-11-2013, 04:00 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
BlinkeyBill's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2011
From: Quilimari,Chile
Posts: 4,213
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdef View Post
So, we as Bahai's should only worship, and pray to the one true God. Bahaullah was a mere human, and so were the rest of his messengers, to pray or worship them is nonsense.
Dear friend with all due respect to you, what you say here is not correct, and with further study of the Baha'i writings/scripture you will discover this for yourself.

The Manifestations are not just mere humans.

Love and peace to you
 
Old 07-11-2013, 06:19 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
Khodrat's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2012
From: North America
Posts: 135
Would you worship God or the Gate?

Food for thought Mr. Mdef,

Without the Gate, you cannot worship God; so therefore I ask you: To open the gate is to worship the gate to open your path to God; therefore would you worship the Gate, God, or both?

To me, the Manifestations of God are the Gates and there messages are the Key! When the messages pass through time, as it happened to past religions, the Key becomes rusty (but by all means still useful!).

Last edited by Khodrat; 07-11-2013 at 06:23 PM.
 
Old 07-11-2013, 09:57 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
arthra's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2006
From: California
Posts: 4,303
Mdef wrote:

"I read the prayers, the scriptures, and it all made sense. If it didn't acknowledge the ten commandments, I would have never became a Bahai. Anyways, each prayer revealed by the Bab, Bahaullah, are in worship of the one true god. If they weren't I would have never became a Bahai.. Because again, Im a fan of the ten commandments and number two strictly says “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth...."

In terms of "images" Mdef I'm wondering in the course of your life how many images you've seen of God being depicted as an old man with a beard?

How many times have you seen representations of Moses or Jesus?

Being a Baha'i you know we don't have these images..icons or representations of even Messengers of God!

They made for them likenesses and pictures, decorated with jewels shining in the eyes; thy placed these likenesses or pictures in the temples, churches and monasteries built on the tops of the mountains, and worshipped them with respect, glory, majesty and reverence. This is the condition of the neglectful ones who are deprived of the Truth (the Manifestations of God) at the day of their existence among them. After the ascension of their (the prophets') spirits unto the Center of Purity and Piety, then the negligent ones repent and return, making likenesses and pictures according to their own ideas, which do not bear resemblance, and worship the same. This is the station of the ignorant ones who are as animals, following every croaker and shaken by every wind. "Forsake them to play in their shallow waters."

~ Abdu'l-Baha, Tablets of Abdu'l-Baha v1, p. 175

"Your understanding that the portrayal of the Bab and Baha'u'llah in works of art is forbidden, is correct. The Guardian made it clear that this prohibition refers to all the Manifestations of God; photographs, or reproductions of portraits, of the Master may be used in books, but no attempt should be made to portray Him in dramatic or other works where He would be one of the 'dramatic personae'. However, there can be no objection to symbolic representation of such Holy Figures, provided it does not become a ritual and that the symbol used is not irreverent."

Ę Ę Ę (Universal House of Justice. Lights of Guidance, p. 540)
 
Old 07-11-2013, 10:27 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Joined: May 2013
From: forest falls california
Posts: 1,773
Primal Veil of God

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdef View Post
I believe we should not worship, pray, bow down to anybody, messenger or not, idols, other than the one true God. It was handed to Moses with the ten commandment's, and I believe it is relevant even today. Yes Im a Bahai, and I believe the the message revealed by Bahaullah through his scriptures, but I believe we should never worship none other than god.
>>> This might be of interest, from the Bab

"Say, He Whom God shall make manifest is indeed the Primal Veil of God. Above this Veil ye can find nothing other than God, while beneath it ye can discern all things emanating from God. He is the Unseen, the Inaccessible, the Most Exalted, the Best Beloved."
 
Old 07-12-2013, 11:44 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
Joined: Dec 2010
From: Pittsburgh
Posts: 217
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlinkeyBill View Post
Dear friend with all due respect to you, what you say here is not correct, and with further study of the Baha'i writings/scripture you will discover this for yourself.

The Manifestations are not just mere humans.

Love and peace to you
Was, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad, Bab, and Bahaullah Human or not? They were human, messengers sent, chosen by God to guide people to the light in that specific time. Do you believe the messengers were god? If you believe that God has partners, my friend, you are not correct.

Selections From the Writings of the Báb
6: EXCERPTS FROM VARIOUS WRITINGS
“SAY, God is the Lord and all are worshippers unto …”
Pages 153-154
Say, the power of God is in the hearts of those who believe in the unity of God and bear witness that no God is there but Him, while the hearts of them that associate partners with God are impotent, devoid of life on this earth, for assuredly they are dead.
The Day is approaching when God will render the hosts 154 of Truth victorious, and He will purge the whole earth in such wise that within the compass of His knowledge not a single soul shall remain unless he truly believeth in God, worshippeth none other God but Him, boweth down by day and by night in His adoration, and is reckoned among such as are well assured.
Say, God indeed is the Sovereign Truth, Who is manifestly Supreme over His servants; He is the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting.
 
Old 07-12-2013, 01:11 PM   #15
Member
 
Joined: Aug 2012
From: GI, Nebraska
Posts: 47
Please correct me if I am wrong here and forgive my crude drawing, I made it quickly in paint.



It is my understanding that this is the meaning of the ringstone symbol with God Manifest in the realm of Láhút. Man's physical body in the realm of Násút, but soul existing in the realm of Malakút.

Our only access to the realm of Láhút is through the intermediary, the Manifestations of God Who abide in the realm of Jabarút as well as the realms of Malakút and Násút.

Is it incorrect to say then that without the Gates abiding in Jabarút man has 0 access to God Manifest? And anything going through to God must then pass through these Gates? Isn't the purpose of the Manifestations to assist in Man reaching God? If so how can it be wrong to pray to/through these Divine Physicians to reach God, isn't this these Blessed Souls very purpose?
 
Old 07-12-2013, 01:15 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
Joined: May 2013
From: forest falls california
Posts: 1,773
Manifestations of God

[QUOTE=Mdef;43875]Was, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad, Bab, and Bahaullah Human or not? They were human, messengers sent, chosen by God to guide people to the light in that specific time. Do you believe the messengers were god? If you believe that God has partners, my friend, you are not correct.

>>> Jesus said, "Before Abraham was, I am." So "He" was before Jesus. There is a reason why we call Them "Manifestations of God", and not "God", but to call them merely human is to mistake their identity as persons like ourselves. There is a fascinating story here:

Why Manifestations Appear in Human Form?
Hadi Rahmani Shirazi
Translated by: Khazeh Fananapazir

Janaab-i-Muhammad Quli Khan-i-Nakha’ee, was an influential and rich local man, who believed in Bahá’u’lláh, and lived in Khusef which is part of Birjand. As a result of his acceptance of the Faith, most of his relatives also became Baha'is.
This Janaab-i-Nakha’ee went on pilgrimage to Akka to attain the presence of His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh. On his first and second visit to Baha'u'llah, he was accompanied by other pilgrims, but when he returned to the pilgrim house, he thought to himself that he had borne the hardships and difficulties of a long journey that had lasted six months, hoping to witness some extraordinary Divine events, but he saw in Bahá’u’lláh a man like others, speaking and giving instructions similar to other men. "There is perhaps nothing extraordinary or miraculous here," he thought.
He was immersed in these thoughts when on the third day of their visit, one of the servants came and informed him that Baha’u’llah wanted to see him alone and unaccompanied. He immediately went to the presence of the Blessed Beauty and as he lifted the curtain and entered His room, he bowed and instantly saw the Blessed Beauty as an incredibly bright and dazzling Light. So intense was his experience of this Light that he fell to the floor and lost consciousness. All that he recalled is Bahá’u’lláh saying: "fee Amanil'lah" which means go in God’s safe keeping."
The servants were able to drag him to the corridor and subsequently brought him to the pilgrim house. He could not eat or sleep for two days after that event and he was conscious of Bahá’u’lláh’s overwhelming Presence everywhere. He kept on telling the other pilgrims that He is here with us.
His fellow pilgrims got tired of this and asked Abdu’l-Baha for help. After couple of days, the servant came back again and took him to Bahá’u’lláh’s presence. When he attained His presence, He poured forth loving kindness and gracious utterances and bade him to be seated.
Then Bahá’u’lláh said: "Janaab-i-Muhammad Quli Khan! The Manifestations of the Divine Essence are forced to appear in human attire and clothes. If Their true Being, that which is behind the veil of concealment were to be revealed, then all humanity like your good self will lose consciousness and swoon away to the realm of the unconscious." Then Baha’u’llah went on: "Do you know how parrots are taught to speak?" I bowed and said: "I do not know".
Baha’u’llah explained: "The parrot owners have a parrot within a cage. Then they bring a big mirror in front of the cage and a man hides himself behind the mirror and starts repeating words and phrases. The parrot sees that there is another parrot identical to itself talking in the cage (reflected in the mirror) and imagining that it is another parrot that is doing the talking it too starts mimicking and learns to speak. Now, if the person who is actually behind the mirror were to reveal himself from the start, then the parrot will never learn to speak. It is thus that the Manifestations of the Divine Being should come into the world in human form and attire so that They will not frighten mankind with Their awesome Being..."

This man was utterly transformed and on his return from attaining Bahá’u’lláh’s presence to the end of his days, he was engaged in teaching others. He had attained such spiritual insight that he predicted the night of his own departure from this earthly realm.
 
Old 07-12-2013, 05:57 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
BlinkeyBill's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2011
From: Quilimari,Chile
Posts: 4,213
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdef View Post
Was, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad, Bab, and Bahaullah Human or not? They were human, messengers sent, chosen by God to guide people to the light in that specific time. Do you believe the messengers were god? If you believe that God has partners, my friend, you are not correct.

Selections From the Writings of the Báb
6: EXCERPTS FROM VARIOUS WRITINGS
“SAY, God is the Lord and all are worshippers unto …”
Pages 153-154
Say, the power of God is in the hearts of those who believe in the unity of God and bear witness that no God is there but Him, while the hearts of them that associate partners with God are impotent, devoid of life on this earth, for assuredly they are dead.
The Day is approaching when God will render the hosts 154 of Truth victorious, and He will purge the whole earth in such wise that within the compass of His knowledge not a single soul shall remain unless he truly believeth in God, worshippeth none other God but Him, boweth down by day and by night in His adoration, and is reckoned among such as are well assured.
Say, God indeed is the Sovereign Truth, Who is manifestly Supreme over His servants; He is the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting.
Dear friend I will try once again to explain. You spoke of Baha'u'llah as just a mere human, I again state that this is not so.

With a little study of the Writings you will understand, as others have been saying that we only can know god through the teachings of the Manifestation. Here is what Abdul-Baha says briefly concerning the Manifestation (Baha'u'llah, Jesus etc)

Know that the Holy Manifestations, though They have the degrees of endless perfections, yet, speaking generally, have only three stations. The first station is the physical; the second station is the human, which is that of the rational soul; the third is that of the divine appearance and the heavenly splendor.
The physical station is phenomenal; it is composed of elements, and necessarily everything that is composed is subject to decomposition. It is not possible that a composition should not be disintegrated.
The second is the station of the rational soul, which is the human reality. This also is phenomenal, and the Holy Manifestations share it with all mankind.
Abdu'l-Baha : Some Answered Questions
The third station is that of the divine appearance and heavenly splendor: it is the Word of God, the Eternal Bounty, the Holy Spirit. It has neither beginning nor end, for these things are related to the world of contingencies and not to the divine world. For God the end is the same thing as the beginning. So the reckoning of days, weeks, months and years, of yesterday and today, is connected with the terrestrial globe; but in the sun there is no such thing -- there is neither yesterday, today nor tomorrow, neither months nor years: all are equal. In the same way the Word of God is purified from all these conditions and is exempt from the boundaries, the laws and the limits of the world of contingency. Therefore, the reality of prophethood, which is the Word of God and the perfect state of manifestation, did not have any beginning and will not have any end; its rising is different from all others and is like that of the sun.
Abdu'l-Baha : Some Answered Questions

So reading here you will see that yes the manifestation is human, but they are also more than that, but less than God, for they are a creation of God.
It is a simple thing to obtain a copy of Some Answered Questions either as a book or electronically via such as Interfaith Explorer.

Love and peace to you
 
Old 07-12-2013, 07:23 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
BlinkeyBill's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2011
From: Quilimari,Chile
Posts: 4,213
Dear Mdef

Here is a quote from a wonderful book, which can be downloaded from the internet.

It is explaining some of the different names for Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Baha'u'llah, in these explanations it explains how they are far more than mere Humans.

Their Names
In the Bahá'í texts the Manifestations of God are given several names:

a. Prophet, that is one who speaks in the name of God;

b. Messenger, representative or apostle of God, that is one who is sent by God into the world so that he may bestow upon mankind the divine bounties of the world of the Kingdom;

c. Word of God, inasmuch as the Manifestations of God have the capacity of giving perfect expression to the spiritual meanings of reality, whereas human beings, limited as they are, have not such a capacity and therefore are referred to as `letters';[27]

d. Sun of Truth or of Reality. In relation to the world of mankind they are like the sun in relation to the earth. They are the only source of life, enlightenment and growth for mankind, as the sun for the earth. Bahá'u'lláh writes: `... if for one moment the tide of His mercy and grace were to be withheld from the world, it would completely perish,'[28] and `Abdu'l-Bahá ex-plains: `The outer sun is a sign or symbol of the inner and ideal


Sun of Truth, the Word of God... a function of the sun is the revelation of the mysteries and creative purposes hidden within the phenomenal world.' This Sun `gives forth the light of religion and bestows the life of the spirit, imbues humanity with archetypal virtues and confers eternal splendors'; `its lights are the lights of reality';[29]
e. Perfect Man. The Manifestation of God is perfect in comparison with other men. Bahá'u'lláh writes: `Upon the inmost reality of each and every created thing He hath shed the light of one of His names, and made it a recipient of the glory of one of His attributes. Upon the reality of man, however, He hath focused the radiance of all of His names and attributes, and made it a mirror of His own Self.' In the metaphor presented by Bahá'u'lláh, the Manifestations of God, in comparison with other men, are `the Primary Mirrors'.[30]

f. Divine Physician. Bahá'u'lláh writes: `Regard the world as the human body which, though at its creation whole and perfect, hath been afflicted, through various causes, with grave disorders and maladies...'; the Manifestation of God is that `skilled... all-powerful and inspired Physician' who gives the `remedy' fit for its `healing'.[31]

In the same vein, `Abdu'l-Bahá explains: `Every divine Manifestation is the very life of the world, and the skilled physician of each ailing soul. The world of man is sick, and that competent Physician knoweth the cure, arising as He doth
with teachings, counsels and admonishments that are the remedy for every pain, the healing balm to every wound'.[32] In the Bahá'í texts the Manifestations of God are also given many other names which describe their attributes: a deeper study of such a topic is beyond the scope of this book.[33]

Book: The Eternal Quest for God: An Introduction to the Divine Philosophy of `Abdu'l-Bahá
Julio Savi
 
Old 07-13-2013, 06:06 AM   #19
Senior Member
 
Joined: Mar 2010
From: Rockville, MD, USA
Posts: 1,354
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdef View Post
Bahaullah was a mere human, and so were the rest of His [God's] messengers, to pray or worship them is nonsense.
Save that your first statement here is wrong:

Divine Messengers (aka Manifestations of God) are NOT "mere humans," but rather occupy a far more elevated station!

As the Baha'i scriptures explain, there are five of what we call "kingdoms of creation." In ascending order, these are:
  • mineral
  • vegetable
  • animal
  • human
  • Divine Messenger

Each has the attributes of the lower orders, and also adds something additional.

For example, the vegetable kingdom adds the attributes of life and growth to those of minerals; humans have an immortal soul that animals don't.

And has already been explained here, Divine Messengers have attributes additional to human ones!

Peace, :-)

Bruce
 
Old 07-13-2013, 06:08 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
cire perdue's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2010
From: Louisiana
Posts: 1,758
Question for Mdef

What, may I ask, has given you the idea that Baha'is do not worship God? (We do NOT believe the Manifestations are consubstantial with God, but are God's creation, that God is absolutely separate from His creation.)
 
Reply

  Baha'i Forums > Baha'i Forums > General Discussion

Tags
bahai, god, worship



Search tags for this page
Click on a term to search for related topics.
Thread Tools
Display Modes



Facebook @bahaiforums RSS


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
Copyright © 2006 - 2018 Bahai Forums. All rights reserved.