The station of the Most Great Infallibility.
However, the Most Great Infallibility is confined to the One Whose station
is immeasurably exalted beyond ordinances or prohibitions and is sanctified
from errors and omissions. Indeed He is a Light which is not followed by
darkness and a Truth not overtaken by error. Were He to pronounce water to
be wine or heaven to be earth or light to be fire, He speaketh the truth
and no doubt would there be about it; and unto no one is given the right to
question His authority or to say why or wherefore. Whosoever raiseth
objections will be numbered with the froward in the Book of God, the Lord
of the worlds. `Verily He shall not be asked of His doings but all others
shall be asked of their doings.' He is come from the invisible heaven,
bearing the banner `He doeth whatsoever He willeth' and is accompanied by
hosts of power and authority while it is the duty of all besides Him to
strictly observe whatever laws and ordinances have been enjoined upon them,
and should anyone deviate therefrom, even to the extent of a hair's
breadth, his work would be brought to naught.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh, p. 108
In response to thy request the Pen of Glory hath graciously described the
stations and grades of the Most Great Infallibility. The purpose is that all
should know of a certainty that the Seal of the Prophets [Muhammad]--may
the souls of all else but Him be offered up for His sake--is without likeness,
peer or partner in His Own station. The Holy Ones [The Imams]--may the
blessings of God be upon them--were created through the potency of His
Word, and after Him they were the most learned and the most distinguished
among the people and abide in the utmost station of servitude. The divine
Essence, sanctified from every comparison and likeness, is established in
the Prophet, and God's inmost Reality, exalted above any peer or partner,
is manifest in Him. This is the station of true unity and of véritable singleness.
The followers of the previous Dispensation grievously failed to acquire an
adequate understanding of this station.The Primal Point [The Bab] --may
the life of all else but Him be offered up for His sake--saith: `If the
Seal of the Prophets had not uttered the word "Successorship", such a
station would not have been created.'
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh, p. 123
XXXVII. Blessed is the man that hath acknowledged his belief in God and in
His signs, and recognized that "He shall not be asked of His doings." Such
a recognition hath been made by God the ornament of every belief, and its
very foundation. Upon it must depend the acceptance of every goodly deed.
Fasten your eyes upon it, that haply the whisperings of the rebellious may
not cause you to slip.
Were He to decree as lawful the thing which from time immemorial had been
forbidden, and forbid that which had, at all times, been regarded as
lawful, to none is given the right to question His authority. Whoso will
hesitate, though it be for less than a moment, should be regarded as a
Whoso hath not recognized this sublime and fundamental verity, and hath
failed to attain this most exalted station, the winds of doubt will agitate
him, and the sayings of the infidels will distract his soul. He that hath
acknowledged this principle will be endowed with the most perfect
constancy. All honor to this all-glorious station, the remembrance of which
adorneth every exalted Tablet. Such is the teaching which God bestoweth on
you, a teaching that will deliver you from all manner of doubt and
perplexity, and enable you to attain unto salvation in both this world and
in the next. He, verily, is the Ever-Forgiving, the Most Bountiful.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá'u'lláh, p. 86
O thou who soarest in the atmosphere of love and fellowship and hast fixed
thy gaze upon the light of the countenance of thy Lord, the King of
creation! Render thanks unto God, inasmuch as He hath unravelled for thee
that which was hidden and enshrined in His knowledge so that everyone may
become aware that within His realm of supreme infallibility He hath not
taken a partner nor a counsellor unto Himself. He is in truth the Dayspring
of divine precepts and commandments and the Fountainhead of knowledge and
wisdom, while all else besides Him are but His subjects and under His rule,
and He is the supreme Ruler, the Ordainer, the All-Knowing, the
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh, p. 110
He Who is the Dawning-place of God's Cause hath no partner in the Most Great
Infallibility. He it is Who, in the kingdom of creation, is the Manifestation of
"He doeth whatsoever He willeth". God hath reserved this distinction unto His
own Self, and ordained for none a share in so sublime and transcendent a station.
This is the Decree of God, concealed ere now within the veil of impenetrable
mystery. We have disclosed it in this Revelation, and have thereby rent asunder
the veils of such as have failed to recognize that which the Book of God set forth
and who were numbered with the heedless.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 36
The Most Great Infallibility, the shield for the temple of His Cause.
Praise be unto God Who hath made the Most Great Infallibility the shield
for the temple of His Cause in the realm of creation, and hath assigned
unto no one a share of this lofty and sublime station--a station which is a
vesture which the fingers of transcendent power have woven for His august
Self. It befitteth no one except Him Who is seated upon the mighty throne
of `He doeth what He pleaseth'. Whoso accepteth and recognizeth that which
is written down at this moment by the Pen of Glory is indeed reckoned in
the Book of God, the Lord of the beginning and the end, among the exponents
of divine unity, they that uphold the concept of the oneness of God.
When the stream of words reached this stage, the sweet savours of true
knowledge were shed abroad and the day-star of divine unity shone forth
above the horizon of His holy utterance. Blessed is he whom His Call hath
attracted to the summit of glory, who hath drawn nigh to the ultimate
Purpose, and who hath recognized through the shrill voice of My Pen of
Glory that which the Lord of this world and of the next hath willed. Whoso
faileth to quaff the choice wine which We have unsealed through the potency
of Our Name, the All-Compelling, shall be unable to discern the splendours
of the light of divine unity or to grasp the essential purpose underlying
the Scriptures of God, the Lord of heaven and earth, the sovereign Ruler of
this world and of the world to come. Such a man shall be accounted among
the faithless in the Book of God, the All-Knowing, the All-Informed.
O thou honoured enquirer! We bear witness that thou didst firmly adhere
unto seemly patience during the days when the Pen was held back from
movement and the Tongue hesitated to set forth an explanation regarding the
wondrous sign, the Most Great Infallibility. Thou hast asked this Wronged
One to remove for thee its veils and coverings, to elucidate its mystery
and character, its state and position, its excellence, sublimity and
exaltation. By the life of God! Were We to unveil the pearls of testimony
which lie hid within the shells of the ocean of knowledge and assurance or
to let the beauties of divine mystery which are hidden within the chambers
of utterance in the Paradise of true understanding, step out of their
habitation, then from every direction violent commotion would arise among
the leaders of religion and thou wouldst witness the people of God held
fast in the teeth of such wolves as have denied God both in the beginning
and in the end. Therefore We restrained the Pen for a considerable lapse of
time in accordance with divine wisdom and for the sake of protecting the
faithful from those who have bartered away heavenly blessings for disbelief
and have chosen for their people the abode of perdition.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh, p. 105-106
Should differences arise amongst you over any matter, refer it to God while
the Sun still shineth above the horizon of this Heaven and, when it hath
set, refer ye to whatsoever hath been sent down by Him. This, verily, is
sufficient unto the peoples of the world.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 38
Assist ye, O My people, My chosen servants who have arisen to make mention
of Me among My creatures and to exalt My Word throughout My realm. These,
truly, are the stars of the heaven of My loving providence and the lamps of
My guidance unto all mankind. But he whose words conflict with that which
hath been sent down in My Holy Tablets is not of Me. Beware lest ye follow
any impious pretender. These Tablets are embellished with the seal of Him
Who causeth the dawn to appear, Who lifteth up His voice between the
heavens and the earth. Lay hold on this Sure Handle and on the Cord of My
mighty and unassailable Cause.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 61-62
Essential infallibility is peculiar to the supreme Manifestation, for it is
His essential requirement, and an essential requirement cannot be separated
from the thing itself... Therefore, if one imagines separation of the Most
Great Infallibility from the supreme Manifestation, He would not be the
supreme Manifestation, and He would lack the essential perfections..
Briefly, it is said that the "Dayspring of Revelation" is the manifestation
of these words, "He doeth whatsoever He willeth"; this condition is
peculiar to that Holy Being, and others have no share of this essential
perfection. That is to say, that as the supreme Manifestations certainly
possess essential infallibility, therefore whatever emanates from Them is
identical with the truth, and conformable to reality. They are not under
the shadow of the former laws. Whatever They say is the word of God, and
whatever They perform is an upright action. No believer has any right to
criticize; his condition must be one of absolute submission, for the
Manifestation arises with perfect wisdom--so that whatever the supreme
Manifestation says and does is absolute wisdom, and is in accordance with
In short, the meaning of "He doeth whatsoever He willeth" is that if the
Manifestation says something, or gives a command, or performs an action,
and believers do not understand its wisdom, they still ought not to oppose
it by a single thought, seeking to know why He spoke so, or why He did such
a thing. The other souls who are under the shadow of the supreme
Manifestations are submissive to the commandments of the Law of God, and
are not to deviate as much as a hairsbreadth from it; they must conform
their acts and words to the Law of God. If they do deviate from it, they
will be held responsible and reproved in the presence of God. It is certain
that they have no share in the permission "He doeth whatsoever He willeth,"
for this condition is peculiar to the supreme Manifestations.
So Christ--may my spirit be sacrificed to Him!--was the manifestation of
these words, "He doeth whatsoever He willeth," but the disciples were not
partakers of this condition; for as they were under the shadow of Christ,
they could not deviate from His command and will.
-- `Abdu'l-Bahá, Some Answered Questions, p. 171-174
Chapter 45 in Some Answered Questions is devoted to an explanation by
`Abdu'l-Bahá of this verse of the Aqdas. In this chapter He stresses, among
other things, the inseparability of essential "infallibility" from the
Manifestations of God, and asserts that "whatever emanates from Them is
identical with the truth, and conformable to reality", that "They are not
under the shadow of the former laws", and "Whatever They say is the word of
God, and whatever They perform is an upright action".
-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 199
The Word of God
Every single letter proceeding out of the mouth of God is indeed a mother
letter, and every word uttered by Him Who is the Well Spring of Divine
Revelation is a mother word, and His Tablet a Mother Tablet. Well is it
with them that apprehend this truth.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá'u'lláh, p. 142
I implore Thee, O my God, by Thy Most Great Name, to enrapture the nations
through the potency of the Word which Thou didst ordain to be the king of
all words, the Word whereby the goodly pearls of Thy hidden wisdom were
uncovered, and the gem-like mysteries which were wrapped up within Thee
were unraveled. Deprive them not, by Thy grace and bounty, of the things
Thou didst desire for them, and suffer them not to be far removed from the
shores of the ocean of Thy presence.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Prayers and Meditations, p. 113
O friend of mine! The Word of God is the king of words and its pervasive
influence is incalculable. It hath ever dominated and will continue to
dominate the realm of being. The Great Being saith: The Word is the master
key for the whole world, inasmuch as through its potency the doors of the
hearts of men, which in reality are the doors of heaven, are unlocked. No
sooner had but a glimmer of its effulgent splendour shone forth upon the
mirror of love than the blessed word `I am the Best-Beloved' was reflected
therein. It is an ocean inexhaustible in riches, comprehending all things.
Every thing which can be perceived is but an emanation therefrom. High,
immeasurably high is this sublime station, in whose shadow moveth the
essence of loftiness and splendour, wrapt in praise and adoration.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh, p. 173
165. Recite ye the verses of God every morn and eventide. #149
Bahá'u'lláh states that the essential "requisite" for reciting "the verses
of God" is the "eagerness and love" of the believers to "read the Word of
God" (Q and A 68).
With regard to the definition of "verses of God", Bahá'u'lláh states that
it refers to "all that hath been sent down from the Heaven of Divine
Utterance". Shoghi Effendi, in a letter written to one of the believers in
the East, has clarified that the term "verses of God" does not include the
writings of `Abdu'l-Bahá; he has likewise indicated that this term does not
apply to his own writings.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 236
Intone, O My servants, the verses of God that have been received by thee,
as intoned by them who have drawn nigh unto Him, that the sweetness of thy
melody may kindle thine own soul, and attract the hearts of all men. Whoso
reciteth, in the privacy of his chamber, the verses revealed by God, the
scattering angels of the Almighty shall scatter abroad the fragrance of the
words uttered by his mouth, and shall cause the heart of every righteous
man to throb. Though he may, at first, remain unaware of its effect, yet
the virtue of the grace vouchsafed unto him must needs sooner or later
exercise its influence upon his soul. Thus have the mysteries of the
Revelation of God been decreed by virtue of the Will of Him Who is the
Source of power and wisdom.
- BAHÁ'U'LLÁH, Compilation, Bahá'í Prayers, p. 2
They who recite the verses of the All-Merciful in the most melodious of
tones will perceive in them that with which the sovereignty of earth and
heaven can never be compared. From them they will inhale the divine
fragrance of My worlds--worlds which today none can discern save those who
have been endowed with vision through this sublime, this beauteous
Revelation. Say: These verses draw hearts that are pure unto those
spiritual worlds that can neither be expressed in words nor intimated by
allusion. Blessed be those who hearken.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 61