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EPISTLE TO MUḤAMMAD SHÁH – Selections from the Writings of the Báb – Bahá’í Publishing Trust – page 18

﴾ EXTRACTS FROM AN EPISTLE TO MUḤAMMAD SHÁH ﴿

From Chihriq After Examination

GLORY be unto Him Who knoweth all that is in the heavens and in the earth. Verily there is no God but Him, the sovereign Ruler, the Almighty, the Great.

He is the One Who on the Day of Severing shall pass judgement through the power of Truth; indeed no God is there besides Him, the Peerless, the All-Compelling, the Exalted. He is the One Who holdeth within His grasp the kingdom of all created things; there is none other God but Him, the Single, the Incomparable, the Ever-Abiding, the Inaccessible, the Most Great.

At this moment I testify unto God, even as He testified unto Himself before the creation of all things: Verily there is no God save Him, the All-Glorious, the All-Wise. And I bear witness unto whatsoever He hath fashioned or will fashion, even as He Himself, in the majesty of His glory, hath borne witness: No God is there but Him, the Peerless, the Self-Subsisting, the Most Wondrous.

In God, Who is the Lord of all created things, have I placed My whole trust. There is no God but Him, the Peerless, the Most Exalted. Unto Him have I resigned Myself and into His hands have I committed all My affairs. No God is there besides Him, the supreme Ruler, the resplendent Truth. Indeed all-sufficient is He for Me; independently of all things doth He suffice, while nothing in the heavens or in the earth but Him sufficeth. He, in very truth, is the Self-Subsisting, the Most Severe.

Praise be unto Him Who at this very moment perceiveth in this remote prison the goal of My desire. He is the One Who beareth witness unto Me at all times and beholdeth Me ere the inception of 'after Hin'.

Why didst thou pronounce judgement without remembering God, the All-Wise? How canst thou endure in the fire? Indeed, mighty and most severe is thy God.

Thou pridest thyself in the things thou dost possess, yet no believer in God and in His signs, nor any righteous man would ever deign to regard them. This mortal life is like unto the carcass of a dog, around which none would gather, nor would any partake thereof, except those who gainsay the life hereafter. Verily it is incumbent upon thee to become a true believer in God, the All-Possessing, the Almighty, and to turn away from the one who guideth thee into the torment of hell-fire.

I have been waiting a while that perchance thou wouldst take heed and be rightly guided. How canst thou answer God on the day which is near at hand -- the day whereon witnesses will stand forth to testify in the presence of thy Lord, the Lord of all the worlds?

By the righteousness of Him Who hath called thee into being and unto Whom ere long thou shalt return, if thou remainest, at the moment of death, a disbeliever in the signs of thy Lord thou shalt surely enter the gates of hell, and none of the deeds thy hands have wrought will profit thee, nor shalt thou find a patron nor anyone to plead for thee. Fear thou God and pride not thyself on thine earthly possessions, inasmuch as what God doth possess is better for them that tread the path of righteousness.

Verily in this Day all that dwell on earth are the servants of God. As to those who truly believe in God and are well assured in the signs revealed by Him, perchance He will graciously forgive them the things their hands have committed, and will grant them admission into the precincts of His mercy. He, in truth, is the Ever-Forgiving, the Compassionate. But the verdict of divine chastisement is pronounced against those who have turned away disdainfully from Me and have repudiated the conclusive proofs and the unerring Book with which God hath invested Me, and on the Day of Severing they shall find no protector or helper.

I swear by Him Who createth all beings and unto Whom all shall return, if anyone at the hour of death beareth hatred towards Me or disputeth the clear tokens wherewith I have been invested, then naught but afflictive torment shall be his lot. On that day no ransom will be accepted, nor will any intercession be permitted, unless God so please. Verily He is the All-Compelling, the All-Glorious; and no God is there other than Him, the sovereign Ruler, the Almighty, the Most Severe.

If thou rejoicest in My imprisonment, woe then unto thee for the grievous torment which will soon overtake thee. Indeed God hath permitted no one to pass unfair judgement, and if thou wouldst fain do so, then soon shalt thou learn.

From the first day that I cautioned thee not to wax proud before God until the present time, four years have elapsed, and during this space naught have I witnessed, either from thee or from thy soldiers, except dire oppression and disdainful arrogance. Methinks thou dost imagine that I wish to gain some paltry substance from this earthly life. Nay, by the righteousness of My Lord! In the estimation of them that have fixed their eyes upon the merciful Lord, the riches of the world and its trappings are worth as much as the eye of a dead body, nay even less. Far from His glory be what they associate with Him!... I seek patience only in God. Verily He is the best protector and the best helper. No refuge do I seek save God. Verily He is the guardian and the best supporter...

I swear by the glory of God, My Lord, the Most Exalted, the Most Great, He assuredly, as is divinely ordained, will make His Cause shine resplendent, while there will be no helper for the unjust. If thou hast any scheme, produce thy scheme. Indeed every revelation of authority proceedeth from God. In Him do I trust and unto Him do I turn.

Hast thou heard anyone of old passing a judgement similar to the one thou didst contrive or like unto that whereto thou didst give thine assent? Woe then unto the oppressors! Both thine intentions and the manner in which thou dealest with the people clearly demonstrate thine infidelity towards God, hence He hath ordained a severe chastisement for thee. Verily I seek patience only in God, and Him do I regard as the goal of My desire. This signifieth that I have the undoubted Truth on My side.

If thou art not apprehensive that the truth might be revealed and the works of the ungodly be brought to naught, why summonest thou not the divines of the land, and then summon Me, so that I may confound them forthwith, even as those disbelievers whom I have previously confounded? This is My sure testimony unto thee and unto them, if they speak the truth. Summon thou all of them. Should they then be able to utter words like unto this, thou wouldst know that their cause is worthy of attention. Nay, by the righteousness of My Lord! They are bereft of power, nor are they endued with perception. They professed faith in the past without understanding its significance, then later they repudiated the Truth; for they are devoid of discernment.

If thou hast decided to shed My blood, wherefore dost thou delay? Thou art now endowed with power and authority. For Me it will prove an infinite bounty conferred by God, while for thee and for them that would commit such an act it will amount to a chastisement meted out by Him.

How great the blessedness that would await Me, wert thou to pass a verdict such as this; and what immense joy would be Mine, shouldst thou agree to do this! This is a bounty which God hath reserved for them that enjoy near access to His court. Give then thy leave and wait no longer. In truth, mighty is thy Lord, the Avenger.

Art thou not ashamed in the presence of God for consenting to the consignment to a fortress of Him Who is the Testimony of God, and His being made captive in the hands of the faithless? Woe betide thee and them who rejoice at this moment in inflicting so dire a humiliation upon Me...

I swear by Him Who hath called Me into being, I can discover no trace of sinfulness in Myself, nor have I followed aught but the Truth; and unto Me God is sufficient witness. Fie upon the world and its people and upon those who take delight in earthly riches, while oblivious of the life to come.

Were the veil to be removed from thine eye thou wouldst crawl unto Me on thy breast, even through the snow, from fear of the chastisement of God which is swift and near at hand. By the righteousness of Him Who hath created thee, wert thou to be acquainted with that which hath transpired during thy reign, thou wouldst wish not to have issued from thy father's loins, but rather to have passed into oblivion. However, that which God, thy Lord, had ordained hath presently come to pass, and woe betide the oppressors in this day.

Methinks thou hast not perused the unerring Book. If thou art satisfied with thine own way and dost not wish to follow the Truth, then to Me be My way and to thee thine. If thou aidest Me not, why dost thou seek to abase Me? Verily, God is the hearer of the suppliant, and in Him all things find their highest consummation, both in this world and in the world to come.

Far from the glory of God, the Lord of heaven and earth, the Lord of creation, be that which is affirmed of Him by the peoples of the world, except by such as faithfully observe His precepts. May the peace of God rest upon the sincere among His servants.

All praise be to God, the Lord of all the worlds.

OV