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>>   Pilgrims' notes
Abstract:
Notes from a pilgrimage in 1954.
Notes:
See also some notes from Brown in her book Memories of Abdu'l-Baha.

See obituary, Ramona Allen Brown, 1889-1975, Bahá'í World Volume 18, p. 399.

This is a "Pilgrim's note," an individual's recollection of statements and actions of the Central figures. They are subjective and not authoritative. See an overview of Pilgrim's Notes.


Haifa Notes

by Ramona Brown

1954
Haifa Notes - May 2, 1954

by Mrs Ramona A. Brown of Oakland, California

[page 1]

AMERICAN BAHA'IS - Anything can happen at any time! It all depends on the political situation. In America the Cause is stifling. The American Bahá'ís need shock medicine. They do not obey. They need a shock. They have fallen down on the job. They are inactive - over administrative. Their home front is an absolute failure. They were given the DIVINE PLAN first. The Administration was given to the American Bahá'ís. The whole world plan depends upon America.

The basis of the Administration is the Local Spiritual Assembly. It must function liquidly; all matters must flow through the LSA, first, then to higher or other Administrative bodies. The LSA should not divert their funds nor scatter their energies; they must not expend money for local expansion, rent a center, have paid advertising, nor paid publicity. The members of the LSA only have authority when in session. American communities must maintain all present LSA's, concentrate on the home front, and go to the Goal Cities.

The Bahá'ís must disperse from the cities, for the people in the cities will be trapped when they want to get out. They must disperse for their protection - the cities are doomed - New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles. They must flee from the United States, because America will become the storm center of the future. When asked, "Should the pioneers go back home after the calamity and help reconstruct," Shoghi Effendi replied, "Reconstruct what?" The young people must disperse far away. The old ones to outlying places - they must settle the goal cities. Sell your property and pioneer! Buy property in Central Africa! Those with independent means must pick up and go, and not wait for the committees to move them. Those with spirit must pack up and go. Take their passport and go. "I will be the one to direct them. I can warn them, but I cannot make them go. Those who will not arise to serve create unhappiness for me, and danger for the believers. There must be a mass response. When I see no response, I am paralyzed. 3,000 should have gone out from America; 495 offered, but only 200 went. The Cause will triumph in spite of the actions and inactivity of the believers. If the country falls down another will make up for it. The Bahá'ís have been given the method - now they must have the "spirit." It is hopeless for capable teachers in the cities (the people will not listen). There should be 1,000 American, self-sacrificing, consecrated, loving, interested, well-organized, conservative teachers to pioneer. In America there are few Bahá'í teachers equipped to teach and the capable ones are suppressed - the committees keep them from teaching. I instantly act as soon as I can find someone I can use. If I have the right tools, I can act. An artist cannot create without tools to use. When I want something done, I ask the American Bahá'ís to do it. There is not enough dedication on the part of the masses. The friends are calculating too much and there is too much emphasis on non- essentials. Bahá'ís must have a new way of life. They need to be different from other people. They must be distinguished. The more distinguished, the more they will attract the people. The greater the distinction, the greater the attraction. It is not enough to be good and kind and to lead a religious life today; it does not count for much unless one accepts the Manifestation of God - if one has heard of Him. One must accept the Manifestation in this Day. If one has not heard of Bahá'u'lláh, they are not to blame -the blame lies with the Bahá'ís. If the Bahá'ís fail to teach the Faith, the people who do not hear of the Faith are not to blame. The blame lies with the Bahá'ís.


[page 2]

All men are not of the same capacity. To serve to full capacity is meritorious with God. God judges men by how they use their capacity. The new race of men will be wholly devoted souls. Bahá'u'lláh was sent to bring about World Unity, and World Unity is the cornerstone of the Faith of Bahá'u'lláh. Every city, every town and every village will have a Temple and a House of Justice in the future. There are three basic processes in teaching - the first is to attract the people; the second is to convert the people; and the third is to be consecrated. There must be attraction, conversion and consecration. The teachers must not be unwise. There are three Charters to be used (I) the Covenant of Bahá'u'lláh, or "The Divine Plan" - (2) the Will and Testament of Abdul'-Baha with the Plan for World Administration, and (3) The Tablet of Carmel - the Charter for the development for the World Center of the Faith (see God Passes By, page 194, and Gleanings, pages 14-16). The Tablet of Carmel is the symbol of the House of Justice; the Ark is the symbol of the Administrative Body; the higher cave of Elijah is the real one where Bahá'u'lláh revealed the Tablet of Carmel in such a loud voice that the priests heard it.

We must encourage the marriage of blacks and whites; black men and white women, and white men and black women. If black women married white men and domineered them, it would make a great impression. American women should marry German men to tone them down and German women should marry American men to tone them down. American women domineer their husbands and make them work and play. In the Bible it speaks about the "half-baked race" - that refers to the Americans.

There are 400 Negro Bahá'ís in America. Maybe we should send Enoch Olinga to America to teach the American Negroes. If he were sent, we should send him to the deep South. The Negroes are sensitive, suspicious and distrustful. The Africans are pure-hearted, like children, but immature. They accept the Americans because they are also pure in heart and simple.

The African Bahá'ís keep asking why they have not been given the Faith before - why it was so long in coming. Why don't they ask the American Bahá'ís that question? Especially the American Bahá'ís. Do the American Bahá'í women hold the Negro babies in their arms and really love them?

"A community sent a bulletin saying they had obeyed me - they had done the Iqan. Obey? Obey? Obey? Whom do they obey? Why do they not read my cablegrams? Why do they not disperse? If they do not respond and disperse, they will suffer spiritually, materially and physically."

Suffering purifies people. Those who do not respond will lose everything for all eternity; those who do respond will gain everything for all eternity.

For pioneers to leave their posts means the next to arrive will have to go through the difficulties all over again and it will be twice as difficult for them. You must persevere and do not think of "home sweet home."

The new race will be wholly devoted souls. This is the Age of the maturity of the human race - a spiritual emergency between man and God. There are three stages in the evolution of mankind. The first stage is that of infancy and childhood. The second stage is that of manhood, at the age of 21. The third is that of Maturity, at 40. Humanity has now reached the third stage. The human race is now 40, and has reached the age of Maturity and must perfect God's work.

The Guardian was asked, "Have you ever been in America?" He answered, "No, but I hope to go."


[page 3]

Ruhiyyih Khanum (his wife) said "Apathy, corruption, decadence, creates unhappiness for Shoghi Effendi and danger for the believers. They must pack up and move out of cities, go to small communities or villages. No one has the right to prevent them."

AMERICA: For America, the best medicine is shock medicine. America is exposed to great dangers. It will be the storm center of the future. Americans do not have enough belief in God - not enough detachment; they must be more spiritual, disencumber themselves from things, have Bahá'í standards, not American standards. Americans are too materialistic, too mechanized, too attached to family, health and death. There must be less materialism, less intellectualism, and more spirit. America has become isolated. anything can happen at anytime. America is the most disturbed nation, politically, on earth. The people are living in a fool's paradise.

Excesses in America are causing animosity and making enemies - this is due to their independence, ruthlessness, bad manners and aggressiveness. Manners, art, music, literature and morals or corrupt. America goes to extremes on sex. The Tower of Babel is not a building but carrying things to excess. There is too much organization in America and too little spirit.

It is positively dangerous to live in Cities. The cities are doomed. They will go up in smoke. They will evaporate. People are flocking to churches through fear. Americans must have a totally new way of life, become a new race of men wholly devoted souls, devoted to God and His ways. They must get to a simpler way of life. The standards of America must be lowered - have fewer luxuries. It would be better for the Americans to go back to the old ways, live a more easy life and stop tearing around to make money.

The husband works all day, comes home at night tired; the wife has been resting all day; she makes him dress up and go out and stay up late, then the next day, go to work again. The men die early and leave insurance, the widows use the money to travel and have a good time. The Master also spoke of this.

The young people of America should go out into the Country on farms and work with their hands and produce food for their families. Americans are pure-hearted, simple and child-like, enthusiastic and industrious, but do not carry things through. They do things with the most leisure.

Americans are exposed to great dangers. Today the power of America is in the hands of the masses (see God Passes By, page 218). There is a terrific power in the press and the people are swayed by it. The United States had a civil war and a federal state was forged not to be dissolved. The United States, on a national scale, sets the pattern for an international pattern. The United States must be united to preserve the "oneness." There will be a world civil war, followed by the establishment of a world state; all the nations will be a part of it and will have to conform to it. This war has already started in Korea. Mankind cannot be purified and cleansed without suffering.

It is essential that the youth of today study deeply the Faith, as they will usher in the Most Great Peace. The Lesser Peace will be established within this century. The Most Great Peace, in the next century. The Global Crusade will establish the Bahá'í Faith the world over, but will not have a direct influence in establishing the United States of the world. The first period will be that of suffering and cleansing; the second period will be that of unification, and the third, the establishment of the Bahá'í World Faith. After the International State is established and wars cease, the


[page 4]

money now being expended for destruction and war will be used for education and science, and a method will be discovered for interplanetary communication, even interplanetary conferences. The time will come when people can cross the entire nation (The whole world one nation) in one hour and eventually beyond the continent into interplanetary travel. The cycle of 6,000 years of city building has come to an end, and now we will have a new pattern, starting with villages, etc. Material civilization is becoming like the ancient city of Babylon and it must be destroyed. In America the destruction will be great!

ISTANBUL: It is much more important to concentrate on Istanbul than on Ankara, the capital, because Istanbul is associated with Bahá'u'lláh. It is the key to the whole Black Sea area, the melting pot of East and West. It is the ancient capital before Constantinople, and the place of suffering and persecution of Bahá'u'lláh. A national assembly must be established there, as Istanbul will be the seat of the N.S.A. and the Haziratu'l-Quds in the future.

RUSSIA: There are 16 republics in Russia. The Bahá'í Faith was established in five. There are no Bahá'ís in Russia now; all the Bahá'ís were scattered and banished and exiled to Siberia. In the future the Bahá'ís will enter Russia - they will pour into east Russia through Alaska, to northwest Russia from Norway, Sweden and Denmark, to southeast Russia from Japan and to west Russia from Germany.

SCANDINAVIA The Scandinavian countries, Norway, Sweden and Denmark have a great destiny ahead. Stockholm is very important and that is why the Temple will be built there. The Danish people have wonderful qualities - the good qualities of the German and English without their faults. They are strong-hearted and determined, tenacious and devoted. They have a great future.

ISRAEL: The Jews await the Kingdom of God; the Christians await the end of a 6,000 year process. We are assured that the Jews will get all of Palestine; Abdu'l-Bahá mentioned this in "Some answered Questions"; also, the British Secretary Balfour in his declaration mentioned it. The Jews are establishing their home in Palestine. The word "Israel" means "Hastening to God." "Isra" means "hastening" and "el" means "God." The Jews suffered for 2,000 years for persecuting Christ, "The Son of God," for 3 years; the Moslems and the Arabs persecuted Bahá'u'lláh, "the Father," for 50 years, so they will suffer more and endure greater sufferings. The time of banishment is now over for the Jews. They will return to Palestine and Palestine will be their home forever. The Moslems and Arabs will be scattered. The Arabs suffered severe defeat because they did not respond to the call of Bahá'u'lláh. One million Jews came into Israel and one million Arabs went out of Israel in 1948 and 1949. The Jews will get all of Palestine because the Arabs will make trouble with the Jews and the Jews will drive them out. The standard of Israel must be raised - there must be more cleanliness - become cleaner - but have no luxuries. The Christian Spiritual Center was in Israel, then in Greece, then in Rome, where it is now, and the Pope is still its head (he is shaking in his boots). The administrative center of Islam is Mecca. The Land of Canaan was under Babylon before the time of Saul, who made it the first Civic Kingdom. After Babylon, India, Persia, then the Greek, and later, the Roman Empire, then came the English Mandate and the free state of Israel. This is the Spiritual Center of the Bahá'í World. The Shrine of the Bab is the Spiritual Center of the Bahá'í World. The Jews are coming into the Faith to support it, but they do not know it yet. The House of Justice is the Administrative Center of the World. It will be built on Mount Carmel in


[page 5]

close proximity of the Shrine of the Bab, overlooking the Shrines of the Greatest Holy Leaf and those of the Mother and brother of the Master. The first edifice to be built there will be the International Archives - later the Universal House of Justice and those of the Guardianship and the Haziratu'l-Quds. These will form an arc above the Monument Gardens. All will be located on Mount Carmel. The House of Justice legislates on subjects not revealed in the Holy text. The Shrine of the Bab has two factors - (I) because the Bab was martyred and his body was brought there, (2) because Bahá'u'lláh was banished there by enemy governments causing changes in Palestine.

THE LATINS, PERSIANS AND TURKS: are immature and unstable and cannot carry things through. They get enthusiastic and then it fades away.

AFRICA: There are 200 localities in Africa. Shoghi Effendi would like to have a picture of all the African Bahá'ís. He said this can only be accomplished by having a conference, but it is not yet time for that - the government would become suspicious and the believers are not yet firmly enough established, but later it will be held in Kampala. He asked about the Haziratu'l-Quds in Uganda. "Busy like a beehive, with Friends coming and going constantly. But the English neighbors ignore us and the cross the street to avoid speaking to us," was the answer. Shoghi Effendi said, "We long needed such a center in Africa. The Haziratu'l-Quds might be changed and converted into a National Headquarters, or another one acquired - expend as little as possible on repairs." The Guardian gave a dervish robe that had belonged to Bahá'u'lláh as a gift to the Haziratu'l-Quds in Uganda. He asked if Bill Foster has been heard from - the answer was "No." Ted Cardell had a very difficult place - Windhock, is in Southwest Africa, but he has courage and determination. He said the Banani family is an example to all Bahá'ís (pioneers) - in fact to all Bahá'ís. He said the Collisons had a fine spirit and what they have done is doubly meritorious because they went pioneering, then went out a second time. It is not enough to go pioneering - one must leave and pioneer elsewhere. The World Order of Bahá'u'lláh will embrace all mankind. There will be four pillars in Africa - four local centers - Kampala, Tunis, Johanesburg and Cairo. Africa and the islands of the Seas will have the greatest future. The Africans are pure-hearted and child-like. But property in Central Africa - there must be 50 centers in Africa. Teach the Pygmy who speak so well and tell him to go to the Pygmies and teach them. The most rapid growth of the Faith is (I) in Africa; (2) Germany, (3) in England.

There are 50 centers in England, Scotland, Ireland and adjoining islands - 200 localities in Africa - only 3 or 4 communities in France. Eventually in the world at the end of the Ten Year Plan, there will be 60 National Spiritual Assemblies.

Christian Scientists are blind and not sure. They think that they are perfect and pure and that they are an example to the world, but they are not. The Bahá'ís use their effort to use God's Plan which is mysterious. The Bahá'ís will build the New World Order relying upon God. The Bahá'ís have no ulterior motives; they do not expect anything from people. The Christian Scientists receive money for their teachings. The Bahá'í Faith is God-inspired, divine in origin, embracing all mankind.

JOSEPH SMITH: was a seer, not a Prophet of God - neither major nor minor. He had a


[page 6]

higher standard, (the same applies to the Quakers), but the Bahá'ís have a higher standard coupled with God's power that comes direct from God for this age.

*******************************

True Copy by:
Charles M. Manson
Culver, Minnesota
January 5, 1955

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