Philadelphia Farewell; New York: The Covenant; The Master's sadness; Persian Consul, Mr Topakyan; influence of dreams
Rob Stockman writes: "He concluded His visit to Philadelphia the next day with a talk at Mary J. Revell’s house and a series of private meetings with Bahá'ís and inquirers. In His talk, He stressed devotion to Bahá'u'lláh:
"Be filled with the Spirit of Baha’o’llah. Your thoughts must be of Baha’o’llah. Your mention must be of Baha’o’llah. Your life must be devoted to Baha’o’llah. Your firmness must be evident in Baha’o’llah, for Baha’o’llah has endured for your sake infinite vicissitudes. All His life He was subject to persecutions. During the nights, He was not at rest. He did not sleep in peace for one night,—not one. Never did He find peace and composure. All His life He was subject to persecution. All His life He was exiled. All His life He was imprisoned. Therefore we must be loyal to Him; turn our faces to Him; praise His mention in this world; expound His teachings; quicken people with His Spirit, so that His Heavenly Image may descend and His Heavenly Power affect the hearts."
"`Abdu’l-Bahá called them to devotion, firmness, and service, but apparently felt He could not yet call them to obedience.
"A crowd went to the train station to show Him off on the 3 P.M. train to New York City. He returned to a crowd at His Manhattan residence and gave an evening talk to them about His trip to Philadelphia and about “spiritual stations and the inner progress of the soul.”"
Ward notes that the 9:30 A.M. talk at the Revell house had about 50 people in attendance. Until He left at 3:00 P.M., he conducted interviews at the Revells' and at the Hotel Rittenhouse.
Mahmud describes the departure scene as follows: "As the Master intended to leave Philadelphia for New York in the morning, many friends were disappointed owing to their imminent separation from Him. They came to the railway station in great sadness to see Him off and all along the way supplicated assistance and guidance from Him.
'In the evening in New York, the Master gave the friends a poignant account of His journey to Philadelphia, outlining the objective of His visit. He also spoke on spiritual stations and the inner progress of the soul, which are the ultimate fruits of human life."
Though Rob notes that the chronology may be off, Mahmud reports that "Today the Master revealed many important Tablets. One of them was to Monsieur Dreyfus: [the first French Baha'i and husband of Laura Barney.] "O thou kind Friend, I visited Philadelphia, for a few days, at the invitation of two ministers and at the request of the friends of God. Two large congregations gathered in the two churches and I spoke within the measure of my incapacity. But the confirmations of the Abhá Kingdom, as evident as the sun, descended and enfolded us. Although we are powerless, He is Mighty. Although we are poor, He is All-Sufficient. The importance of this blessed verse became truly manifest: `We shall aid whosoever will arise for the triumph of Our Cause with the hosts of the Concourse on high and a company of Our favored angels.'
I hope that both you and the maidservant of Bahá will be able to render important services on this journey and will become the cause of proclaiming the Word of God. Convey my respectful greetings to the maidservant of Bahá. I pray God for confirmations and assistance for her. May the Glory of the All-Glorious rest upon thee."
"During this time, both day and night, many people besides these servants were present at the table and enjoyed the presence of the Master.
"This evening He spoke of the days in Baghdád, saying: The Blessed Beauty did not make any more public speeches after leaving Baghdád and Adrianople. The mode of His discourse and the style of His utterances were a cause of wonder and were without peer or likeness. However, out of respect, I do not wish to give my speeches in that manner."
Of today in 1912 (or maybe he means the 11th) Mahmud wrote: "After prayers and meditations in the morning, the Master called us into His presence and requested that we chant some prayers. Later He was occupied managing His affairs. In the meeting with the friends today He spoke about differences that arise within religions after the ascension of their Founders, the Manifestations, to the heavenly abode. But the Blessed Beauty has shut the door on such differences and has referred all affairs to the House of Justice so that whatever the House of Justice commands, all must obey and submit to it. He said that if the Bahá'ís should become divided into two branches, each establishing a House of Justice of its own in opposition to the other, both would be false. Bahá'u'lláh wrote His Covenant with His own Pen and, prior to the establishment of the House of Justice, He appointed and confirmed the Center of the Covenant, `Abdu'l-Bahá, directing that `whatever He does is correct.'
"The Master spoke with great emotion at the meetings of the Bahá'ís, His exhortations accompanied by sighs of grief. His condition during this time was such as to cause great sadness.
Hospitality provided by Persian Consul General Topakyan
in honor of 'Abdu'l-Baha
"In the afternoon He went to the house of the Persian Consul, Mr Topakyan. When He returned home, one of the friends questioned Him about the influence of dreams, saying that it has frequently occurred that two people from widely different places would call out to each other, recognizing each other's voices in the state of sleep. The Master responded:
Visit to Mr Topakyan,
Persian Consul General
It is obvious that a very deep relationship exists between the spirit of man and the world of existence. It often happens that what we see in a dream comes to pass in wakefulness; indeed, even in wakefulness when the soul is unfettered, matters come to mind which later appear in visible form. This shows that between the reasoning power of man and that visible appearance there is a spiritual connection. Furthermore, the spirit of man has the power of discovering facts. When this power is realized, problems become easily resolved. Amusingly, while materialists are engaged in making discoveries concerning the strata of the earth, they are immersed in the very spiritual power whose potency and influence they deny. They also claim to forecast coming events.
Such discourses were frequently discussed in the Holy Presence."
Don't you wish you were privy to some of the discourses--and His Holy Presence?