Posted by Misagh on July 15, 2101 at 22:04:42:
In Reply to: Breaking the covenant posted by Living-Tribunal on July 13, 2101 at 14:29:05:
I thought I'd try and address some issues you raised about Covanent-breaking, what it is and means, and why Baha'i are discouraged from seperating themselves from Covanent breakers.
Abdul'Baha discusses Covanent breaking extensively in his Will and Testament. Some quotes:
"And now, one of the greatest and most fundamental principles of the Cause of God is to shun and avoid entirely the Covenant-breakers..."
Now, lemme show you a quote that a good friend of mine pointed out to me, that really struck me:
"O friends! It behooveth you to call to mind with tenderness the trials of His Holiness, the Exalted One, and show your fidelity to the Ever-Blest Beauty. The utmost endeavor must be exerted lest all these woes, trials and afflictions, all this pure and sacred blood that hath been shed so profusely in the Path of God, may prove to be in vain."
This quote is a bit long, but look at it closely. We are to "call to mind" the trials and tribulations of both the Bab (forerunner of the Baha'i Faith) and Baha'u'llah. The Bab and Baha'u'llah both suffered tremendously because of the actions of covanent breakers. Not to mention Abdul'Baha Himself!! Basically, by complying with Abdul'Baha's wish that we disconnect ourselves from Covanent breakers, we are showing our love and dedication to the Manifestations of God and to Abdul'Baha. It's a sign of obedience and love. For Baha'is, who wouldn't want to obey this command out of love for the Cause?
But, there's another aspect to all of this. For Baha'is, covanent breaking is a disease. A spiritual illness. The injunction not to associate with Covanent-breakers is there also for our protection. It is there as a safeguard. The problem with Covanent breaking is that Covanent breakers don't 'believe differently': In fact, they profess to believe in the Bab, Baha'u'llah, sometimes Abdul'Baha, sometimes the Guardian... BUT, for whatever reason, they decide to attack the institutions put in place by Baha'u'llah, Abdul'Baha, and Shoghi Effendi. Therefore, because they say they are "Baha'is", and still raise doubt and sedition amongst people about the Divine institutions, they are a great danger to Baha'is. A non-Baha'i who attacks the Faith isn't a Covanent-breaker. Even people who decide to leave the Faith for whatever reason aren't Covanent-breakers. And, only the Universal House of Justice (which Baha'is believe is infallible) can designate who is a Covanent-breaker.
And, about wanting the right to associate with Covanent breakers... as I said, the whole principle of avoiding Covanent breakers is there as a protection. Many staunch believers in the Baha'i Faith became Covanent breakers after having spent time with them. The goal of recent Covanent breaking is to somehow attack the Institutions of the Baha'i Faith, and sometimes this is done to gain some personal power or status. The goal of the Baha'i Faith is to help bring forth an "ever advancing civilization", with Baha'u'llah's Teachings helping us out.
I just had a brainwave, and I thought I'd share it with all of you. In the Writings of the Baha'i Faith, we are told rather strongly about the dangers of Covanent breaking and associating with them, and about the qualities and spiritual futures of those that are Covanent breakers. Then, every Baha'i that knows something of the Covanent of the Baha'i Faith strives to avoid this spiritual "leprosy". For a Baha'i that knows something of the Covanent, it is only natural to avoid Covanent-breakers, and the guidance of Baha'u'llah, Abdul'Baha, and Shoghi Effendi help re-inforce all of this for us.
Anyways, I could go on and on about this whole topic, but I'm hoping someone more capable than I will come along and post some perspectives.
BTW, for further reading, I suggest the Kitab-i-Ahd (Book of the Covanent) of Baha'u'llah, the Will and Testament of Abdul'Baha, 'Dispensation of Baha'u'llah' (a section in Shoghi Effendi's book, "The World Order of Baha'u'llah"), and also the messages from the Universal House of Justice on the Covanent and Covanent-breaking.
If anything I've written above is incorrect, or doesn't make sense, I apologize. It's kinda late here, and I'm going to bed soon.
Take care everyone!
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