Daily Frameworks for 02 January 2023

Kamál, 03 Sharaf (Honor), 179 B.E

The Nine Year Plan: 2022-2031

Many will be familiar with how the Guardian divided the Ages of the Faith into consecutive epochs; the fifth epoch of the Formative Age began in 2001. Less well known is that the Guardian also made specific reference to there being epochs of the Divine Plan, and stages within those epochs. Held in abeyance for two decades while local and national organs of the Administrative Order were being raised up and strengthened, the Divine Plan conceived by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá was formally inaugurated in 1937 with the commencement of the first stage of its first epoch: the Seven Year Plan assigned by the Guardian to the North American Bahá’í community. This first epoch closed after the conclusion of the Ten Year Crusade in 1963, which had resulted in the banner of the Faith being planted across the world. The opening stage of the second epoch was the first Nine Year Plan, and no less than ten Plans have followed in its wake, Plans that have ranged in duration from twelve months to seven years. At the dawn of this second epoch, the Bahá’í world was already witnessing the earliest beginnings of that entry into the Faith by troops that had been foreseen by the Author of the Divine Plan; in the succeeding decades, generations of devoted believers within the community of the Greatest Name have laboured in the Divine Vineyard to cultivate the conditions required for sustained, large-scale growth. And at this glorious season of Riḍván, how abundant are the fruits of those labours! The phenomenon of sizeable numbers swelling the activities of the community, catching the spark of faith and swiftly arising to serve 1 at the leading edge of the Plan has moved from being a forecast sustained by faith to a recurring reality. Such a pronounced and demonstrable advance demands to be marked in the annals of the Cause. With elated hearts, we announce that the third epoch of the Master’s Divine Plan has begun. Stage by stage, epoch after epoch shall His Plan unfold, until the light of the Kingdom illumines every heart. 2 3

The Promulgation of Universal Peace

Yes! This is the day of Bahá’u’lláh, the age of the Blessed Perfection, the cycle of the Greatest Name. If you do not smile now, for what time will you await and what greater happiness could you expect? This is the springtime of manifestation. The vernal shower has descended from the cloud of divine mercy; the life-giving breeze of the Holy Spirit is wafting the perfume of blossoms. From field and meadow rises a fragrant breath of thanksgiving like pure incense ascending to the throne of God. The world has become a new world; souls are quickened, spirits renewed, refreshed. Truly it is a time for happiness. 4

  1. “I beseech Thee, therefore, by Thyself and by Them, to send down, from the right hand of the throne of Thy grace, upon all that dwell on earth, that which shall wash them from the stain of their trespasses against Thee, and cause them to become wholly devoted to Thy Self, O Thou in Whose hand is the source of all gifts, that they may all arise to serve Thy Cause, and may detach themselves entirely from all except Thee. Thou art the Almighty, the All-Glorious, the Unrestrained.”
    Bahá’u’lláh. Prayers and Meditations by Baháʼuʼlláh. Translated by Shoghi Effendi. 1938. Reprint, Wilmette, IL: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1974, 99. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/bahaullah/prayers-meditations/3#913712627
  2. Universal House of Justice. The Nine Year Plan: 2022-2031. 1st ed. Wilmette, Illinois: Baha’i Publishing, 2022, 7.
  3. Universal House of Justice. “Riḍván 2021 – To the Bahá’ís of the World.” Bahá’í Reference Library. Accessed April 20, 2021.
  4. ’Abdu’l-Bahá. The Promulgation of Universal Peace: Talks Delivered by ʻAbduʼl-Bahá during His Visit to the United States and Canada in 1912. Edited by Howard MacNutt. 2nd ed. Wilmette, Ill: Baháʼí Publishing Trust, 1982, 210. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/15#889743033

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