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TAGS: Lawh-i-Mallahul-Quds (Tablet of the Holy Mariner); Lesser prophets; Maid of Heaven; Words and phrases
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Tablet of the Holy Mariner (Lawh-i-Malláhu'l-Quds):
Study Compilations

by Aziz Mboya

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Chapter 34

Sealed Prophecies

In another instance, it is said: "Our Cause is sorely trying, highly perplexing;
none can bear it except a favorite of heaven, or an inspired Prophet, or he
whose faith God hath tested."
-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Iqan, p. 82

The following prophecy about Muhammad and the 12 Imams in the Book of
Revelation appears to be an example of a Sealed Prophecy.

12:1 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with
the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of
twelve stars:
-- Bible: Revelation

21:1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven
and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God
out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
-- Bible: Revelation

The Law of God is also compared to an adorned bride who appears with
most beautiful ornaments, as it has been said in chapter 21 of the
Revelation of St. John: "And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem,
coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for
her husband." And in chapter 12, verse 1, it is said: "And there
appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and
the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars."
This woman is that bride, the Law of God that descended upon Muhammad.
The sun with which she was clothed, and the moon which was under her
feet, are the two nations which are under the shadow of that Law, the
Persian and Ottoman kingdoms; for the emblem of Persia is the sun, and
that of the Ottoman Empire is the crescent moon. Thus the sun and moon
are the emblems of two kingdoms which are under the power of the Law
of God. Afterward it is said: "upon her head is a crown of twelve stars."
These twelve stars are the twelve Imáms, who were the promoters of the
Law of Muhammad and the educators of the people, shining like stars in
the heaven of guidance.
-- `Abdu'l-Bahá, Some Answered Questions, p. 68

The term "suns" hath many a time been applied in the writings of the
"immaculate Souls" unto the Prophets of God, those luminous Emblems of
Detachment. Among those writings are the following words recorded in the
"Prayer of Nudbih": "Whither are gone the resplendent Suns? Whereunto have
departed those shining Moons and sparkling Stars?" Thus, it hath become
evident that the terms "sun," "moon," and "stars" primarily signify the
Prophets of God, the saints, and their companions, those Luminaries, the
light of Whose knowledge hath shed illumination upon the worlds of the
visible and the invisible.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Iqan, p. 35

Bahá'u'lláh uses similar symbolism to the passage from Revelation in the
Tablet of the Maiden to announce his revelation.

Praise be to Thee, O God, My God. I make mention of Thee at this time,
when the sun of Thy Godhead hath risen from the horizon of the splendid
divinity of Thy oneness,...

There arose the houri (maiden), Who had dwelt in pre-eternity in the
pavilions of holiness, protection, and glorification and in the canopies
of sinlessness, greatness and splendor...

... Then the firmament was illumined by the radiance of its light,
contingent beings were made resplendent by its appearance and effulgence,
and by its rays infinite numbers of suns dawned forth, as though they
trekked through heavens that were without beginning or end. I became
bewildered at the pen of God's handiwork, and at what it had inscribed
upon Her temple. It was as though She had appeared with a body of light in
the forms of the spirit, as though She moved upon the earth of essence in
the substance of manifestation. I noticed that the houris had poked their
heads out of their rooms and were suspended in the air above Her. They grew
perplexed at Her appearance and Her beauty, and were entranced by the
raptures of Her song. Praise be to Her creator, fashioner, and maker -- to
the one Who made Her manifest...

Thus do we address you, O concourse of paradise, with a vision of eternity.
Interpret it for Me, if ye can interpret the vision of the spirit.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, the Tablet of the Maiden (a provisional translation)

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