Tablet of the Universe - some questions

nharandi
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Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2008 6:49 pm

Tablet of the Universe - some questions

Postby nharandi » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:44 am

http://bahai-library.com/index.php5?fil ... iyyih.html

I've been reading this tablet and was wondering what some of you thought about parts: For now,

1) what do you believe is meant by "universals" and "particulars"?

2) (Paragraph 8 ): What's meant by "The Dawning Places of Unity, the Daysprings of Singleness and the Suns of Holiness are also sanctified beyond the bounds of number, and the luminous spiritual worlds are exalted above limits and restrictions."

What are "The Dawning Places of Unity, the Daysprings of Singleness and the Suns of Holiness" and is he trying to say they are infinite along with spiritual worlds?

brettz9
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Re: Tablet of the Universe - some questions

Postby brettz9 » Thu Aug 21, 2008 5:14 am

Hello and welcome nharandi,

As far as "universals" and "particulars", by here I believe is simply meant the types of things mentioned in that same paragraph. For example, the sun may appear as "universal" to an atom, but relative to the galaxy (etc.) it is a mere "particular". As 'Abdu'l-Baha states, "Universal and particular are in reality incidental and relative considerations."

By "The Dawning Places of Unity, the Daysprings of Singleness and the Suns of Holiness" is meant a Manifestation of God--the Prophets such Abraham, Moses, Zoroaster, Jesus, Muhammad, the Bab, and Baha'u'llah.

By the way, I haven't read it yet myself (no time), but I just came across an interesting looking article at http://www.planetbahai.org/cgi-bin/arti ... rticle=222 if you might be interested.

best wishes,
Brett

MontanaDon
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Re: Tablet of the Universe - some questions

Postby MontanaDon » Thu Aug 21, 2008 10:17 pm

nharandi wrote:http://bahai-library.com/index.php5?file=abdulbaha_lawh_aflakiyyih.html

I've been reading this tablet and was wondering what some of you thought about parts: For now,

1) what do you believe is meant by "universals" and "particulars"?


I was waiting for someone else to jump in here because I'm more of a groupie than an expert.

This is a very sophisticated statement by Abdu'l-Baha, presumably in answer to specific questions. There appear to me to be a bunch of unstated assumptions and implications that I can't claim to more than dimly perceive. It concerns the nature of creation and how we should understand and interpret it. The language is 19th Century Muslim Natural Philosophy using neo-Platonic terminology.

A simple explanation of universals and particulars is that universals are categories and particulars are specific individuals within a category. So we have human beings -> David.

One of the points He makes is that not only are all particulars part of a universal and all universals have particulars, but all universals are particulars of a more encompassing universal. This process has an infinite number of steps until you reach the largest universal - Creation.

He also notes that the Messenger of God is also a particular of a universal.

nharandi wrote:2) (Paragraph 8 ): What's meant by "The Dawning Places of Unity, the Daysprings of Singleness and the Suns of Holiness are also sanctified beyond the bounds of number, and the luminous spiritual worlds are exalted above limits and restrictions."

What are "The Dawning Places of Unity, the Daysprings of Singleness and the Suns of Holiness" and is he trying to say they are infinite along with spiritual worlds?


Yes. The characteristics of any universal are found in all the particulars under that universal. Creation includes both the material and spiritual worlds. Further, if I understand Baha'i cosmology correctly, Creation did not begin with "the big bang", rather there have already been an infinite number of "big bangs", and both the Messengers of God and the Spiritual Worlds are therefore infinite in number, each of which is part of a universal which ultimately is part of Creation.

Don C
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Understood properly, all man's problems are essentially spiritual in nature.


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