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EPISTLE TO MUḤAMMAD SHÁH – Selections from the Writings of the Báb – Bahá’í Publishing Trust – page 24

﴾ EXTRACTS FROM AN EPISTLE TO MUḤAMMAD SHÁH ﴿

From Chihriq Before Examination

THIS is an Epistle from Him Who is the true, the undoubted Leader. Herein is revealed the law of all things for those who fain would heed His Call or wish to be reckoned among them that are guided aright. Herein is enshrined the law of all things for such as would bear witness to the Revelation of thy Lord in accordance with this clear balance. Verily the ordinances of God concerning all things were formerly set forth in eloquent Arabic. Indeed those whose souls have been created through the splendour of the light of thy Lord recognize the Truth and are numbered with such as faithfully obey the One True God and are well assured...

O Muḥammad! The Decree of thy Lord was fulfilled four years ago; and ever since the inception of the Cause of thy Lord I have warned thee to fear God and not to be of the ignorant. I despatched a messenger unto thee with a truly resplendent Tablet, but the followers of the devil turned him away disdainfully and interposed themselves between him and thee. They expelled him from the land whereof thou art the undisputed sovereign. Thus hath the good of this world and of the next escaped thee, unless thou submit to the commandment ordained by God and be of them that are rightly guided.

On My return from the sacred House of God I sent thee a Message similar to, nay even greater than the one I had previously sent unto thee. Indeed God is the best protector and witness. I despatched a messenger unto thee with Epistles revealed by Me, that thou mightest obey the command of God and not be of them that have repudiated the Truth. The oppressor, however, committed a thing the like of which no one would commit, not even any of the wicked, nor anyone among the vile wrong-doers...

The tribulations which I have suffered in this land, no one of old hath suffered. Verily unto God shall revert the whole affair, and He in truth is the best protector and is cognizant of all. The things which have, from the first day till now, befallen Me at the hand of thy people are but the work of Satan. Ever since the Cause of thy Lord hath appeared none of thy deeds hath been acceptable, and thou hast been lost in palpable error while all thou couldst see appeared to thee as deeds performed for the sake of thy Lord. In truth thy day is nigh at hand and thou shalt be questioned concerning all this, and assuredly God is not heedless of the deeds of the wicked.

Had it not been for thee, thy supporters would not have disdainfully rejected Me, though they have gone more widely astray than the foolish.

Dost thou imagine him whom thou hast appointed Chancellor in thy kingdom to be the best leader and the best supporter? Nay, I swear by thy Lord. He will bring thee into grievous trouble by reason of that which Satan instilleth in his heart, and verily, he himself is Satan. He comprehendeth not a single letter from the Book of God and is seized with fear by reason of that which his hands have wrought. Fain would he extinguish the light which thy Lord hath kindled, so that the old impiety which is concealed in his inner being may not be revealed. Hadst thou not appointed him as thy Chancellor no one would have paid him the slightest attention. Indeed in the estimation of the people he is naught but manifest darkness...

Fear thou God and suffer not thy soul to be chastised beyond that with which it hath already been tormented; for ere long thou shalt pass away and shalt declare thyself clear of the devil whom thou hast appointed as thy Chancellor, saying: 'O would that I had not taken the devil as my Chancellor, nor appointed an impostor as my guide and adviser.'

Why dost thou burden thy soul with that which is far more abject than the deeds of Pharaoh, and still callest thyself one of the faithful? How dost thou peruse the verses of the Qur’án, while thou art of the unjust? Never would the Jews, nor the Christians nor any such people as have rejected the truth consent to inflict wrongs upon the son of their Prophet's daughter. Woe betide thee, for the day of chastisement is approaching. Dost thou not dread the wrath of thy Lord, the Almighty, the Lord of the heavens, the Lord of all worlds? Indeed these manifest verses are conclusive testimony for those who seek true guidance.

I have no desire to seize thy property, even to the extent of a grain of mustard, nor do I wish to occupy thy position. If thou followest Me not, then unto thee be the things thou dost possess, and unto Me the land of unfailing security. If thou obeyest Me not, wherefore dost thou look disdainfully upon Me and seek to treat Me with sore injustice? Verily, behold My habitation -- a lofty mountain wherein no one dwelleth. Woe betide them that wrongfully do injustice to people, and unjustly and deceitfully usurp the property of the believers in violation of His lucid Book; whereas I, Who, in very truth, am the rightful Sovereign of all men, designated by the true, the undeniable Leader, would never infringe on the integrity of the substance of the people, were it to the extent of a grain of mustard, nor would I treat them unjustly. Rather would I consort with them even as one of themselves, and I would be their witness.

That which devolveth upon Me is but to mention the Book of thy Lord and to deliver this clear Message. If thou wishest to enter the gates of Paradise, lo, they are open before thy face and no harm can reach Me from anyone. Every missive which up till now I have directed unto thee and unto the custodian of thy affairs hath been but a token of My bounty to you both, that perchance ye may grow anxious about the day which is nigh at hand. Nevertheless from the moment ye waxed disdainful, divine judgement was passed upon you in the Book of God, for in truth ye both have denied your Lord and are numbered with them that will perish... This is indeed My last reminder unto you, and I shall make no mention of you hereafter, nor shall I make any remark other than affirming you as infidels.

Unto God do I commit Mine affair and yours, and He verily is the best Judge. Were ye to return, however, ye would be granted whatever ye desire of earthly possessions and of the ineffable delights of the life to come, and ye would inherit such glorious might and majesty as your minds can scarce conceive in this mortal life. But if ye fail to return then upon ye shall be your transgressions.

Ye cannot alter the things which the Almighty hath prescribed unto Me. Naught shall touch Me besides that which God, My Lord, hath pre-ordained for Me. In Him have I placed My whole trust and upon Him do the faithful place their complete reliance.

Bear Thou witness unto Me, O Lord. By sending forth this resplendent Epistle I shall have proclaimed Thy Verses unto both of them and shall have fulfilled Thy Testimony for them. I am well pleased to lay down My life in Thy path and ere long to return to Thy presence. Unto Thee be praise in the heavens and on the earth. Deal with them according to Thy decree. In truth Thou art the best protector and helper.

Set right, O Lord, such disorders as people stir up, and cause Thy Word to shine resplendent throughout the earth, so that no trace of the ungodly may remain.

I beg forgiveness of Thee, O My Lord, for that which I have uttered in Thy Epistle, and I repent unto Thee. I am but one of Thy servants who give praise to Thee. Glorified art Thou; no God is there but Thee. In Thee have I placed My whole trust and of Thee do I beg pardon for being a suppliant at Thy door.

Sanctified is God thy Lord, the Lord of the Mighty Throne, from that which the people wrongfully and without the guidance of His lucid Book, affirm of Him. Peace be upon them that beseech forgiveness from God thy Lord, saying: 'Verily, praise be unto God, the Lord of the worlds.'

OV