239 Days in America, Day 223: November 19, 1912 | New York

The Trouble With J. P. Morgan’s Millions 1

‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ’S AUTOMOBILE halted in front of 33 East 36th Street in the early afternoon on Monday, November 18, 1912. His party of six ascended a broad flight of steps between two sleek Assyrian lionesses who kept watch in pink Tennessee marble before the recessed portico of an Italian Renaissance villa in midtown Manhattan.

The architect of the place, Charles Follen McKim of the renowned firm McKim, Mead & White, had suffered a nervous breakdown over this building—or, more precisely, over having to accommodate the insistent demands and fastidious tastes of his client. On other projects McKim might have done as he pleased, but one simply did not say no to J. Pierpont Morgan. …

The titan of Wall Street had invited ‘Abdu’l-Bahá for a private interview this afternoon here, at his private library. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá entered through heavy bronze doors into the illuminated splendor of a vaulted rotunda. Mosaic panels, and columns of veined skyros and cippoline marble, textured the space and at ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s feet a colorful marble floor unfurled, inlaid with pieces from the Roman Forum and a central disc of deep purple porphyry. The domed ceiling of blue and white stucco bore paintings and reliefs of classical figures that Henry Siddons Mowbray had modeled on Raphael and installed beneath the gentle light of a central oculus. Gazing upward, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá could see murals inspired by Pinturicchio, which adorned lunettes over the main entrance and above doors to the East and West rooms, depicting scenes and legendary lovers from Greek and Roman epics, Arthurian romances, Dante’s Divine Comedy, and Renaissance lyric poetry. Morgan received guests in the West Room, his large, plush study. His son-in-law wrote that no one could really know him who hadn’t seen him sitting quietly in front of the fire; chomping on a big black cigar; playing solitaire beneath the coffered wooden ceiling; enveloped by the bright red damask silk that lined the study’s walls.

But today he wasn’t there. Some urgent business matter had arisen, and, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá learned, Morgan wouldn’t be able to come. …

Final Days in America: New York City 2

On November 19 Mahmúd noted, “A number of school children gathered near the Beloved saying, ‘Who is this person who looks like Christ?’ Miss Juliet Thompson spoke to them outside the house about the Beloved Cause and the life of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. They asked to interview Him and they were invited to come. …”

Tuesday, November 19, 1912 3

The Master spent the day at the home of Mrs Krug in the utmost happiness. A number of the believers and His companions were also very happy to witness the Master’s joy, the influence of the Cause of God and the power of the Covenant of God.

In the afternoon, at a public meeting attended chiefly by women, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá spoke on the equality of the rights of women and their education and progress through the Manifestation of this supreme age. He encouraged them to acquire the perfections and virtues of the world of humanity.

Later, at the home of Mr and Mrs Kinney, He asked Mr [Hooper] Harris to speak at the meeting of the friends.

As Mr MacNutt‘s apparent equivocation and lack of firmness seemed to be causing his degradation in the eyes of the friends, he came to the Master and implored Him to recommend him to them. The Master replied, ‘The remedy depends upon your sincere repentance and your open denouncement of the violators in the meetings of the friends.’ In compliance, Mr MacNutt rose and gave an account of his journey to Chicago and his meeting with [Ibrahim George] Kheiralla. Some felt that he spoke ambiguously. The Master asked him to explain his actions in plain words so that the friends might be satisfied and this blemish on his character be removed. Again he testified in clear terms of his faith in the Covenant and his rejection of the Covenant-breakers. The Master went to the podium and expressed His pleasure at Mr Harris’s talk and for Mr MacNutt’s words of repentance. The Master then went upstairs and called Mr [William] Hoar, Mr Harris, Mr [Arthur P.] Dodge and other friends to Him and asked them to embrace Mr MacNutt and exhorted them to have the utmost love and unity among themselves. He encouraged and inspired them to spread the divine word and to diffuse the fragrances of God. He told them that they must sacrifice all other affairs for the accomplishment of this great affair.

Despite this, the Master and the friends, in their inmost hearts, were saddened by Mr MacNutt’s earlier actions. Some felt that he was not trying hard enough to show his humility and firmness in the Covenant. After the Master’s departure from America, Mr MacNutt went to California and other regions of America. The believers stayed away from him. He wrote many letters of repentance to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, who sent him many encouraging and kind words.

18 November 1912, Talk at Home of Mr. and Mrs. Frank K. Moxey, 575 Riverside Drive, New York 4

At such a time Bahá’u’lláh dawned from the eastern horizon like the glory of the sun. He renewed the basis of the religions of God, destroyed blind adherence to ancestral forms and established in their stead love and spiritual fellowship so that no strife, discord or hostility remained. This reconciliation of divergent sects is visible and evident. They now live together in love and unity. If you should enter one of their meetings, you would realize that they have become as one race, one native land, one religion; that they associate together in brotherhood and agreement. Praise be to God! These blind imitations and this darkness have ceased to exist, and the reality of the oneness of humanity has been practically proven.

I consider the American people a highly civilized and intelligent nation, a nation investigating truth and reality. It is my hope that through the efforts of this noble nation the solidarity of humanity may be continually advanced, that the illumination of the human world may become widespread, that the banner of universal peace may be held aloft, the lamp of the oneness of the human world be ignited and the hearts of the East and West be conjoined. Then the reality of the divine religions shall become resplendent and refulgent, indicating that they were meant to be the cause of unity and love and that through them heavenly bestowals have ever been conferring light upon the human world.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to Its Spiritual Destiny

The Master encouraged women to acquire the perfections and virtues of the world of humanity

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

November 19, 1912


  1. Menon, Jonathan. “The Trouble With J. P. Morgan’s Millions.” 239 Days in America, 19 Nov. 2012, https://239days.com/2012/11/19/the-trouble-with-j-p-morgans-millions/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 187.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=9#section241
  4. ʻAbduʼl-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, 446-447. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/32#729562953

239 Days in America, Day 222: November 18, 1912 | New York

November 18, 1912: The Week Ahead 1

THIS AFTERNOON ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ takes up J. Pierpont Morgan on an invitation to visit his vast library on the corner of Madison Avenue and 36th Street. Morgan, the tycoon owner of railroads, steelworks, and telegraph companies, runs much of modern civilization in America.

In the week ahead, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá attends a farewell dinner at the Great Northern Hotel, which, it turns out, will refuse to let any African Americans through the door; he expresses two very different opinions of America’s two richest men; and, as the decade moves on, the Great War cuts ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s home in Palestine off from the rest of the world while increasing prejudice engulfs African Americans at home.

Final Days in America: New York City 2

On November 19 the New York Times, in an article entitled “PROPHET BLESSES MORGAN,” reported:

“J. Pierpont Morgan was written down yesterday as one who had done “considerable philanthropy” when his library in East Thirty-sixth Street was visited by Abdul Baha, the Persian prophet. After the patriarch had wandered through the treasure rooms, he paused before the album long enough to write a blessing on the financier and thereto append his autograph. Beneath the Persian script his companion, Dr. Ameen Fareed, wrote this translation:

‘O, Thou Generous Lord, verily this famous personage has done considerable philanthropy, render him great and dear in Thy Kingdom, make him happy and joyous in both worlds, and confirm him in serving the Oneness, the world of humanity, and submerge him in the sea of Thy Favors.

ABDUL BAHA ABBAS’”

Monday, November 18, 1912 3

In the morning the Master was occupied revealing Tablets in answer to letters from the believers. He permitted some friends and newcomers to interview Him in His own room. When the visitors grew too numerous, He appeared in the gathering and showered love and kindness upon all.

Whenever the Master became tired, He would go alone to the nearby gardens along the bank of the river to rest. He said, ‘When I am alone, I do not talk, my mind is not busy and I can rest a little. But when I am not alone I must speak; I perspire and feel exhausted.’

These were the final days of His stay in America and there was a great rush of visitors. There was not one moment when people were not present.

In the afternoon, while talking to a group of the friends, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá suddenly said: ‘We wish to build a House of Worship on that side of the water.’ Later He said: ‘This city shall become good when the call of “Yá Bahá’u’l-Abhá” shall reach the highest heaven from it. If the believers arise as they should erelong the word of God will envelop all these regions.’ He also added, ‘As the United States of America is far and free from the arena of the prevailing political turmoil, this government and country can prevent war between the nations and bring about peace and harmony among them.’

The Master was invited by the poet Mr Moxey and Mrs Moxey for supper. The hosts were among the devoted friends of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and they were eloquent in their praise of Him. During the Master’s previous visit to New York Mr Moxey had written a book of poetry, describing the demeanor, majesty and power of the Master. Mrs Moxey, who was a famous musician, opened the gathering by playing the piano and singing a melodious song of praise in His honor. The Master began His address with these words:

“I praise God that I am with you. Such an assembly would be utterly impossible to hold through worldly power and outward means because you are Westerners and we are Easterners. There was nothing to connect us. We had neither patriotic, racial, commercial nor political connections with you. But Bahá’u’lláh removed all these estrangements and prejudices and invited all to divine love. He joined all under the shade of the blessed Word. Hence, we are united and assembled here in such love. This love is the greatest of all means, as all other means and ties are limited; but harmony that comes about through the love of God is infinite and everlasting.”

These impressive words transformed the hearts. After the meeting several of the friends and His companions were honored to have supper with Him. Everyone was grateful and showed great devotion in that home.

Talk at Home of Mr. and Mrs. Frank K. Moxey, 575 Riverside Drive, New York 4

The teachings and ordinances of the divine religions are of two kinds. The first are spiritual and essential in nature—such as faith in God, faith in Christ, faith in Moses, faith in Abraham, faith in Muḥammad, the love of God and the oneness of the world of humanity. These divine principles shall be spread throughout the world. Strife and enmity shall disappear, ignorance, hatred and hostility cease and all the human race be bound together. The second kind of ordinances and teachings concern the outer conditions and transactions of the world of mankind. They are the nonessential, accidental or temporary laws of human affairs which are subject to change and transformation according to the exigencies of time and place. For instance, during the time of Moses divorce was permitted, but in the time of Christ it was made unlawful. In the Torah there are ten commandments concerning retribution for murder, which would not be possible to enforce at the present time and under existing conditions of the world. Therefore, these nonessential, temporary laws are superseded and abrogated to suit the exigencies and requirements of successive periods.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to Its Spiritual Destiny

The Master took periodic short breaks to rest in nearby gardens

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

November 18, 1912


  1. Menon, Jonathan. “November 18, 1912: The Week Ahead.” 239 Days in America, 18 Nov. 2012, http://stagingtwo39.wpengine.com/2012/11/18/november-18-1912-the-week-ahead/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 186-187.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=9#section240
  4. ʻAbduʼl-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, 445. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/32#583494526

239 Days in America, Day 198: October 25, 1912 | Sacramento

‘Abdu’l-Bahá at the “Home of Truth” 1

“‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ HARDLY REQUIRES an introduction, as nearly all who are present have been looking forward to his coming to Sacramento.” The speaker was Christine Fraser from The Home of Truth, a branch of the New Thought movement gaining momentum in America at the turn of the twentieth century. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá had left San Francisco that morning, on October 25, 1912, arriving in Sacramento by noon. At 8:30 p.m. that same evening, an audience gathered in the Assembly Hall of the Hotel Sacramento to hear him speak. …

‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s talk drew parallels between the lives of Jesus and Bahá’u’lláh, both of whom were subjected to persecution for challenging the religious authorities of the day. Then, to this crowd accustomed to mystical explorations, he enumerated a number of practical principles that he characterized as “true religion.” True religion caused unity, peace, and love, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá remarked, while religious imitations led to war and strife. The main reason that people turn to irreligion or atheism, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá argued, was because “the blind imitations or dogmatic interpretations current among men do not coincide with the postulates of reason. . . .” All should investigate reality for themselves, he explained: “Reality is one; and when found, it will unify all mankind.”

California 2

On His last day in San Francisco, Friday, October 25, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá told them:

“I have come to say good-bye. How grateful we should be to the Blessed beauty who has created such affection in our hearts. This attar that I am sprinkling on you is a fragrance from the paradise of Abhá. …

“These days of meeting were days of happiness. … I beg of God to bring forth the results of these friendships so that they may become the Cause of enlightenment to the world and of guidance to all who live on earth.”

‘Abdu’l-Bahá left San Francisco by train on Friday morning, October 25, and arrived in Sacramento at noon.

Friday, October 25, 1912 3

Today we were to depart from San Francisco. The Master’s residence was full to capacity with a multitude of friends. The power of the Cause, the influence of the Covenant of God and the ardor of the friends were overwhelming. What warmth and affection this gathering of true lovers generated in the early hours of the morning! When they heard the Master coming downstairs, everyone rose reverently. When they saw His feet on the stairs they raised the cry of Alláh-u-Abhá, their eyes fixed intently on His face, like sun-loving iguanas. Seeing the ardor and attraction of the friends, the Master was deeply moved, His face transformed. He anointed all with attar of rose and said to them:

“Here I want to bid you farewell. This meeting and assemblage are very moving. This is the last draught in the goblet! How thankful we must be to the Blessed Perfection that He has brought the hearts so near to each other. This attar that I give you is but a token of the fragrance of the Abhá Paradise — the best of all fragrances. I am very sad to be separated from you and I do not know how to express it. It is not possible to give tongue to the feelings of the heart. I am greatly moved because I saw the love of Bahá’u’lláh in you, I witnessed the light of Bahá’u’lláh in your beings. I am so moved that I cannot speak. I leave it to your hearts to feel what I feel. Although I am going away from you, you have your place in my heart. I will never forget you. When I reach the Shrine of Bahá’u’lláh, I shall lay my head on the Sacred Threshold and beseech confirmation for every one of the friends. These days of our meeting were blissful days. They cannot be bettered. I met you every day and I always found the hearts attracted, the eyes turned unto the Abhá Kingdom. There cannot be better days. Do you not forget them and I shall not. I beg of God that the results of this amity shall become evident, that it shall lead to spirituality in the world, to impart guidance to all who dwell on this earth. I hope for such results from this gathering that it will not be like other gatherings of people who forget each other as soon as they disperse. It is certain that because this gathering has been a divine assemblage, it will never be forgotten and whenever recollected it will produce fresh delight. This is my wish.”

He was sad as He left the house. Some of the friends begged His permission to accompany Him to Sacramento, the capital of California. Among them were Mrs Goodall, Mrs Cooper and other wonderful handmaidens of God such as Mrs Ralston, who are serving the Cause with heart and soul.

As the train passed two or three stations beyond San Francisco, it reached a bay where there are ferries on whose decks are two railroad tracks that can be joined to the tracks on the banks. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá spent His time visiting with the friends and completing an article about the history of Bahá’u’lláh’s time and His teachings. The train arrived in Sacramento at noon.

An elegant woman [Christine Fraser], 4 who had previously received a promise from the Master, was at the station. She begged Him to grace her home with His presence. He accepted and we rode in her automobile to her home. Mrs Goodall and Mrs Cooper enthusiastically assisted the other friends accompanying the Master. En route the Master remarked to us, ‘Let us consult together about staying at this lady’s house.’ When we arrived at her home, the Master requested that Mrs Goodall and Mrs Cooper be telephoned and asked to come. When they arrived we could see that they too did not wish Him to stay at the house. The Master then said, ‘We must act according to the consultation with the friends.’

After the Master bestowed His kindness on the hostess, He said:

“You desired greatly that we should come to your house. We have come. We shall also take luncheon here. But at night we will stay in the hotel, for in each city we have stayed at hotels. Notwithstanding the supplications of the friends to stay in their homes, we have not accepted these invitations. But today we have come to your house.”

The Master spoke in this vein until the woman finally agreed. He then went to the Hotel Sacramento. On the way He spoke and said, ‘I desire to act always according to the counsel and wishes of the friends unless it is a very important matter which is not good for the Cause of God, then I do hold tenaciously to whatever is advantageous to the Cause.’ Continuing, He said: ‘The value of my conduct and fellowship is not known yet, but it shall be known later.’

A meeting was held in the evening in the salon of the hotel. A large number of friends and seekers were attracted to the teachings and discourses of the Master. Since it was evident that there were much interest among the audience, the friends announced there would be a public meeting the following morning in the same hall.

Talk at Hotel Sacramento, Sacramento, California 5

The first teaching is that man should investigate reality, for reality is contrary to dogmatic interpretations and imitations of ancestral forms of belief to which all nations and peoples adhere so tenaciously. These blind imitations are contrary to the fundamental basis of the divine religions, for the divine religions in their central and essential teaching are based upon unity, love and peace, whereas these variations and imitations have ever been productive of warfare, sedition and strife. Therefore, all souls should consider it incumbent upon them to investigate reality. Reality is one; and when found, it will unify all mankind. Reality is the love of God. Reality is the knowledge of God. Reality is justice. Reality is the oneness or solidarity of mankind. Reality is international peace. Reality is the knowledge of verities. Reality unifies humanity.

In brief, His theme was that reality underlies all the great religious systems of the world. He summoned the nations and peoples of the world to it. Hostile nations because of their acceptance of the reality of His words became unified. Strife, discord and contention among them passed away; they attained a station of utmost love. At present in Asia those who have accepted His teachings and followed His example, although formerly most hostile and bitter toward each other, now associate in brotherhood and fellowship. The strife and warfare of past times have ceased among them. Jews, Zoroastrians, Christians, Muslims and others have attained to a superlative state of love and agreement through Bahá’u’lláh. They now consort together as one family. They have investigated reality. Reality does not accept multiplicity, nor is it subject to divisibility. These irreconcilable peoples have become unified and agreed.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to It’s Spiritual Destiny

A heartrending departure from San Francisco

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

October 25, 1912


  1. Jones, Caitlin Shayda. “‘Abdu’l-Bahá at the ‘Home of Truth.’” 239 Days in America, 25 Oct. 2012, https://239days.com/2012/10/25/abdul-baha-speaks-to-the-home-of-truth/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 170-171.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=8#section216
  4. Caton, Peggy. “A History of the Sacramento Bahá’í Community, 1912-1991 .” Community Histories: Studies in the Bábí and Bahá’í Religions, 1. ed, vol. 6, Kalimát Press, 1992, pp. 241–80. https://bahai-library.com/caton_community_histories_sacramento
  5. ʻAbduʼl-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, 372-373. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/27#628985716

239 Days in America, Day 189: October 16, 1912 | San Francisco

The Grand Benefactress of California 1

ON OCTOBER 16, 1912, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá woke up in one of Phoebe Hearst’s forty rooms in her mansion in Pleasanton, California. Most of the other rooms were empty; only a few close friends and family had joined Mrs. Hearst for the duration of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s stay. Since George Hearst’s death twenty-one years earlier, Mrs. Hearst had been busy managing an immense mining fortune, including the Homestake gold mine in South Dakota, and the Anaconda copper mine in Butte, Montana.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá did not give lengthy talks while in Pleasanton; instead, he casually answered the questions of those around him. “How is it that the desires of some people are achieved while others are not?” someone asked. “Good intentions and sound thoughts attract confirmations,” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá answered. “The desires of human beings are endless. . . He can never find peace but through effort and resignation, so that, notwithstanding all efforts in worldly affairs, the human heart remains free and happy.” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá concluded: “He neither becomes proud on attaining wealth and position nor becomes dejected on losing them.”

The morning of October 15, 1912, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá toured Mrs. Hearst’s home and gardens. He chose a few plant specimens to take home with him and cultivate next to the resting place of his father, Bahá’u’lláh. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá enjoyed the company of Mrs. Hearst’s grandchildren that evening, saying, “In reality, children are the ornaments at the table, especially these children, who are very sweet! The hearts of children are extremely pure and simple. A person’s heart must be like a child’s, pure and free from all contamination.”

California 2

Before leaving on Wednesday morning [October 16], ‘Abdu’l-Bahá called all the servants together, thanked them, and gave them ten dollars each.

After returning to San Francisco, He spoke at the Century Club concerning the rights of women. At the Nineteen Day Feast that evening, at the home of Mrs. Goodall in Oakland, 125 were present. The friends played the piano and sang before the meeting. Then ‘Abdu’l-Bahá anointed each guest with attar of roses and served them Himself, speaking afterward of spiritual development. He remained in Oakland overnight.

Wednesday, October 16, 1912 3

Although some of Mrs Hearst’s relatives had previously been narrow-minded and aloof, they were now humbled and transformed. This was most notable when it came time for the Master to depart and He was bidding them farewell. The Master called all of the servants and attendants of the house and the maids, orderlies, cooks and butler stood in a line before Him. He encouraged them to be truthful, honest and devoted to their work. Thanking them for their services, He said: ‘As I am like a father to you, I wish to leave a memento with you.’ He gave each two guineas and left. The grand and illustrious guests stood by humbly, astonished and impressed with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s generosity, grandeur and majesty.

Mrs Hearst begged ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to allow her to accompany Him to San Francisco. Her wish was granted and she traveled with the Master. Some of His words to her were these:

“The Cause of God is sanctified from all political power and worldly affairs. Among the divine teachings are trustworthiness, detachment and sanctity. So if you should see a man coveting property and evincing greed toward the wealth of others, know that he is not of the people of Bahá. The people of Bahá are they who, should they happen to come upon a valley of gold and silver, would pass by it like lightning in utter disregard.”

The Master encouraged her especially to protect and train her youngest grandchild. ‘This child’, He said, ‘has a well-proportioned forehead and an open, pleasant face and if given heavenly instruction will be the cause of the eternal happiness of this family.’

When the eminent men of America and the liberal-minded people of its cities see such behavior, wisdom, majesty and power exemplified by the Master, even though they are prominent themselves, they are fascinated by His unique character and fall in love with Him. This afternoon the Master gave an address at the Century Club in San Francisco on the rights and education of women before an audience of women and their husbands. They were captivated and so overcome with joy that they begged to be introduced to Him and to attain His presence. This was a gathering of wealthy people and there was an abundance of food and refreshments. The Master had some tea and sweets and then left. When He was outside the building, crowds of people surrounded Him, demonstrating their joy, love and respect.

After the meeting, the Master remarked:

“I speak according to the demands of the time and the capacity of my listeners. ‘The father makes gurgling sounds for the newborn infant, although his wisdom be capable of measuring the universe.’”

Later in the evening the Master and some of the friends and His servants went to Oakland to attend the Nineteen Day Feast. On the way He spoke of the sadness of the friends in Seattle, saying:

“They are upset that I am not going there. However, in spite of the great distance, they have come to see us, notwithstanding the effort involved. Had it been but a one- or two-day trip, I would have gone to Portland and Seattle but the distance is great. I would not visit Los Angeles were it not for the purpose of visiting the tomb of Mr Chase. The friends all have expectations but if I should want to go to all these places, the journey would become too long and that is impossible. However, in my heart there is such love for the heavenly friends that I do not wish even a speck of dust to touch them. God forbid! If I see harm coming to one of you, I will throw myself in its path to shield you.”

When the Master reached the home of Mrs Goodall and Mrs Cooper He took a walk before the Feast on the shores of the lake. He returned for the meeting and spoke to the friends and seekers, saying:

“On the way here we were saying that it never occurred to us that we would come to California and meet with the friends in this manner or that we would proclaim the Cause of God in great assemblies. How Bahá’u’lláh suffered, what persecutions and hardships He endured! He saw His property plundered and carried off. He was chained and imprisoned so that hearts would be connected, that the East and the West would find harmony, that the oneness of humanity would come about and that universal peace may reign.”

The friends had gathered to play the piano and sing songs of praise while awaiting the arrival of the Master. When their melodious voices reached His ears from the lower hall, He wrote a letter to Hájí Mírzá Haydar-Alí (the Angel of Carmel), beginning:

“O thou who art partner and co-sharer with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in servitude to the Threshold of Bahá! It is evening and these wandering birds are nestled in the home of the maidservant of God, Mrs Helen Goodall, in Oakland, California. It is the Nineteen Day Feast. A number of the faithful friends and the pure and illumined leaves of God are supplicating the all-glorious Kingdom. All the delicacies are spread and ready and the table is exquisitely arranged. Oh, how thou art missed! Severed from all else, they sing a new song and with a new voice repeat spiritual notes. They are in a state of absolute love and supplication. Oh, how thou art missed! Oh, how thou art missed!”

‘Abdu’l-Bahá joined the gathering, invited the friends to sit at the table and began to serve them, anointing each with perfume and serving delicacies while circulating amongst them, saying:

“Praise be to God! We are assembled in the home of Mrs Goodall and Mrs Cooper in utmost love and affection. Every delicacy is provided. All hearts are in utmost love and serenity. All eyes are turned to the Abhá Kingdom. It is a good gathering, it cannot be surpassed. The Supreme Concourse is now beholding this assemblage and crying out, ‘Blessed are ye! Blessed are ye! O ye servants of the Blessed Beauty! Blessed are ye; blessed are ye with your radiant countenances! Blessed are ye; blessed are ye with hearts like unto rose gardens! Observe, what a favor is conferred upon you, what a bounty is bestowed upon you that ‘Abdu’l-Bahá is in your midst, makes mention of you and congratulates and compliments you.’”

He then said, ‘Go on with your supper. I shall go upstairs and then come back.’

12 October 1912, Talk at Temple Emmanu-El, 450 Sutter Street, San Francisco, California 4

From this review of the history of the Jewish people we learn that the foundation of the religion of God laid by Moses was the cause of their eternal honor and national prestige, the animating impulse of their advancement and racial supremacy and the source of that excellence which will always command the respect and reverence of those who understand their peculiar destiny and outcome. The dogmas and blind imitations which gradually obscured the reality of the religion of God proved to be Israel’s destructive influences, causing the expulsion of these chosen people from the Holy Land of their Covenant and promise.

What, then, is the mission of the divine Prophets? Their mission is the education and advancement of the world of humanity. They are the real Teachers and Educators, the universal Instructors of mankind. If we wish to discover whether any one of these great Souls or Messengers was in reality a Prophet of God, we must investigate the facts surrounding His life and history, and the first point of our investigation will be the education He bestowed upon mankind. If He has been an Educator, if He has really trained a nation or people, causing it to rise from the lowest depths of ignorance to the highest station of knowledge, then we are sure that He was a Prophet. This is a plain and clear method of procedure, proof that is irrefutable. We do not need to seek after other proofs. We do not need to mention miracles, saying that out of rock water gushed forth, for such miracles and statements may be denied and refused by those who hear them. The deeds of Moses are conclusive evidences of His Prophethood. If a man be fair, unbiased and willing to investigate reality, he will undoubtedly testify to the fact that Moses was, verily, a man of God and a great Personage.

In further consideration of this subject, I wish you to be fair and reasonable in your judgment, setting aside all religious prejudices. We should earnestly seek and thoroughly investigate realities, recognizing that the purpose of the religion of God is the education of humanity and the unity and fellowship of mankind. Furthermore, we will establish the point that the foundations of the religions of God are one foundation. This foundation is not multiple, for it is reality itself. Reality does not admit of multiplicity, although each of the divine religions is separable into two divisions. One concerns the world of morality and the ethical training of human nature. It is directed to the advancement of the world of humanity in general; it reveals and inculcates the knowledge of God and makes possible the discovery of the verities of life. This is ideal and spiritual teaching, the essential quality of divine religion, and not subject to change or transformation. It is the one foundation of all the religions of God. Therefore, the religions are essentially one and the same.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to It’s Spiritual Destiny

‘Abdu’l-Bahá thanks all the domestic servants in Mrs. Hearst’s house

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

October 16, 1912


  1. Jones, Caitlin Shayda. “The Grand Benefactress of California.” 239 Days in America, 16 Oct. 2012, https://239days.com/2012/10/16/the-humility-of-the-rich/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 168-169.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=8#section207
  4. ʻAbduʼl-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, 364-365. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/27#289803138

239 Days in America, Day 179: October 6, 1912 | San Francisco

‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Ayn Rand, and the Poor 1

When ‘Abdu’l-Bahá was a young man, his father wrote a series of letters to the world’s political and religious leaders. He called them to account for their treatment of the powerless. “Fear the sighs of the poor,” he wrote to Sultan ‘Abdu’l-‘Azíz, ruler of the Ottoman Empire, “and of the upright in heart who, at every break of day, bewail their plight.” The poor, Bahá’u’lláh stated, “are thy treasures on earth. It behoveth thee, therefore, to safeguard thy treasures from the assaults of them who wish to rob thee. Inquire into their affairs, and ascertain, every year, nay every month, their condition, and be not of them that are careless of their duty.”

In America, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá spoke regularly of the means of alleviating poverty. Legislation must protect the poor, he said, and work to limit extremes of poverty and wealth. But more essential, he argued, was a change in people’s hearts — something that would demonstrate itself through material generosity and sacrifice. Moreover, he called on people to associate with the poor. It was something he had spent a great portion of his life doing.

California 2

On His first Sunday in San Francisco, October 6, Abdu’l-Bahá addressed the congregation of the First Unitarian Church in the morning and of the First Congregational Church of Oakland in the evening.

Sunday, October 06, 1912 3

The Master was invited to deliver an address at the First Unitarian Church of San Francisco. The moment He entered the church the audience stood respectfully. When the music ended, the Master was introduced by the pastor of the church, who dwelt on His 40 years of imprisonment, the martyrdom of the Eastern Bahá’ís, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s release from prison and His journey to spread the teachings of the Ancient Beauty. He also mentioned the teachings of universal peace and the unity of nations and peoples under the shadow of the Greatest Name. The pastor then read a translated passage from the Hidden Words.

The Master stood and delivered a comprehensive talk on the degrees of love, amity, peace and the oneness of mankind; the universality of the Manifestations of God; the truth of Islam; and the news of the appearance of Bahá’u’lláh. He concluded by chanting an inspiring prayer in Persian. Again the pastor stood, praised the Master’s talk and thanked Him for His address. At the conclusion of the meeting, a crowd of people came to the Master to shake His hand, expressing their sincerity and heartfelt appreciation. Those who had not yet had the honor of visiting Him took His address so they might meet Him at His home.

In the afternoon a number of Bahá’ís and non-Bahá’ís gathered to meet Him. In answer to a question from an Indian regarding Sufism and the Trinity, He stated:

“The reality of divinity is holy beyond descent and incarnation but the divine Manifestations are expressive of the attributes and perfections of God, the All-Praised, the Exalted. They are like mirrors placed before the Sun of Truth, so if they claim that the Sun of Truth is in them, they speak the truth. However, they mean that the signs and light of the Sun of Truth are in them, and not the Sun itself.”

In the evening ‘Abdu’l-Bahá went to the First Congregational Church in Oakland. The influence of the Cause and the majesty of the Covenant made such an impression and was so widespread that during his introduction the pastor of the church said: ‘Tonight the messenger of God will speak in the church of God and you will hear with your own ears.’

The Master spoke magnificently on the fundamental oneness of the principles of religions and the truth of Islam. His words moved and deeply affected everyone, increasing their joy and eagerness and raising the status of the Cause of God.

25 September 1912, Talk at Second Divine Science Church, 3929 West Thirty-eighth Avenue, Denver, Colorado 4

My highest hope and desire is that the strongest and most indissoluble bond shall be established between the American nation and the people of the Orient. This is my prayer to God. May the day come when through divine and spiritual activity in the human world the religions shall be reconciled and all races of mankind come together in unity and love. Fifty years ago Bahá’u’lláh proclaimed the peace of the nations and oneness of the divine religions, addressing His words to all the kings and rulers of the world in specific Tablets. Therefore, my supreme desire is the unity of the East and West, universal peace and the oneness of the world of humanity.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to It’s Spiritual Destiny

‘Abdu’l-Bahá chanted an inspiring prayer in Persian at the end of His address at the First Unitarian Church of San Francisco

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

October 6, 1912


  1. Sockett, Robert. “‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Ayn Rand, and the Poor.” 239 Days in America, 6 Oct. 2012, https://239days.com/2012/10/06/reflections-on-poverty-and-the-example-of-abdul-baha/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 166.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=8#section197
  4. ʻAbduʼl-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, 342. [https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/26#685192122]

239 Days in America, Day 177: October 4, 1912 | San Francisco

America’s Unique Geopolitical Position 1

“MY GREATEST HAPPINESS THIS morning is this,” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá told a reporter from the San Francisco Chronicle on October 3, 1912, “That I have come to such a modern and progressive city. Praise be to God everything is beautiful and there seems to be much joy here.” …

On the other hand, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá asserted, “The American democracy is not founded upon warlike doctrines. Hence it becomes this democracy to uphold international peace and spread it throughout the world.” But he was advocating more than diplomatic niceties. America, he said, had the ability to use its moral suasion and industrial power to forge an international court of arbitration backed by a binding global collective security agreement that could banish international war. “In case any Government or nation should prove rebellious concerning any decision of the court,” he told the Chronicle, “the other nations should coalesce to force it into obedience.”

“A more fervent hope and a fonder desire concerning the American people,” he concluded, “is that their instrumentality shall be such as to enlarge the scope of this scheme and that earnest concerted action from the nations of the world will result therefrom.”

California 2

On October 4, after an afternoon visit to Golden Gate Park, Abdu’l-Bahá sent one of His frequent telegrams to the Persian friends, informing them of the events of His historic journey. This time He reported, “‘We are in utmost joy among the friends of San Francisco. The confirmations are really overwhelming and the happiness overflowing.’”

Friday, October 04, 1912 3

After morning prayers, two Japanese Bahá’ís came to see ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. The Master expressed His happiness on seeing their faith and sincerity in the Cause, saying:

“This is an historic event. It is out of the ordinary that an Iranian should meet Japanese people in San Francisco with such love and harmony. This is through the power of Bahá’u’lláh and calls for our thankfulness and happiness. If it be said that Bahá’u’lláh brought a man from heaven and another from earth and caused them to meet midway between the earth and heaven, do not be surprised. The power of Bahá’u’lláh makes all difficulties simple. I like the Japanese greatly because they are audacious and intelligent. Whatever they turn their attention to, it becomes a success.”

The visitors invited the Master to come to Japan to promote the potential of the Japanese people and asked His permission to contribute articles on the Faith to the Japanese newspapers. He readily granted their request and showed them great kindness.

In the afternoon a representative from the [San Francisco] Post came to interview the Master, who said to him:

“In this enlightened age everything has been renewed — sciences have been renewed, new arts have come into being, new skills have appeared, new thoughts have been expressed, new inventions have come to light and new discoveries have been made. In reality, the world of being has become a new world. Thus, the principles of religion also must be renewed.”

To a journalist from the [San Francisco] Bulletin He said:

“God created man after His own image and likeness . . . but now, behaving contrarily, man has become more merciless and fearless than rapacious beasts. A beast kills only one animal each day for his food, while merciless man tears apart a hundred thousand people in a day merely for fame and dominion. Should a wolf tear a sheep apart, they would kill it; but if a man massacres a hundred thousand men in blood and dust, he is given an ovation and is pronounced a marshall or a general. If a man kills another or sets fire to a house, he is condemned as a murderer; but if he annihilates an army and overturns a country, he is called a conqueror and is admired. If a man steals a dollar he is thrown into prison but if he plunders the homes of people and lays waste a city he is called a commander and is praised.”

25 September 1912, Talk at Second Divine Science Church, 3929 West Thirty-eighth Avenue, Denver, Colorado 4

In the early part of the nineteenth century the horizon of Persia was shrouded in great darkness and ignorance. The people of that country were in a condition of barbarism. Hatred and bigotry prevailed among the various religions; bloodshed and hostility were frequent among sects and denominations of belief. There were no evidences of affiliation and unity; violent prejudice and antagonism ruled the hearts of men. At such a time as this Bahá’u’lláh proclaimed the first principle of His mission and teaching—the oneness of the world of humanity. His second announcement was the investigation of reality; the third was the oneness of the foundations of the divine religions. Through spiritual education He led the people out of darkness and ignorance into the clear light of truth, illuminated their hearts with the splendor of knowledge, laid a true and universal basis for religious teachings, cultivated the virtues of humanity, conferred spiritual susceptibilities, awakened inner perceptions and changed the dishonor of prejudiced souls to the highest degree of honor and capacity. Today in Persia and the Orient you will find the followers of Bahá’u’lláh united in the closest ties of fellowship and love. They have abandoned religious prejudices and have become as one family. When you enter their meetings, you will find Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Zoroastrians, Jews and representatives of other beliefs present, all conjoined in a wonderful unity without a trace of bigotry or fanaticism, and the light of the oneness of the world of humanity reflected in their faces. Day by day they are advancing, manifesting greater and still greater love for each other. Their faith is fixed upon the unification of mankind, and their highest purpose is the oneness of religious belief. They proclaim to all humanity the sheltering mercy and infinite grace of God. They teach the reconciliation of religion with science and reason. They show forth in words and deeds the reality of love for all mankind as the servants of one God and the recipients of His universal bounty. These are their thoughts, their beliefs, their guiding principles, their religion. No trace of religious, racial, patriotic or political prejudice can be found among them, for they are real servants of God and obedient to His will and command.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to It’s Spiritual Destiny

The Master shows great kindness to two Japanese Bahá’ís

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

October 4, 1912


  1. Menon, Jonathan. “America’s Unique Geopolitical Position.” 239 Days in America, 4 Oct. 2012, https://239days.com/2012/10/04/abdul-baha-assesses-americas-unique-geopolitical-position/
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 166.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=8#section195
  4. ʻAbduʼl-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, 341. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/26#685192122

239 Days in America, Day 174: October 1, 1912 | San Francisco

The Biggest Week in the History of Salt Lake City 1

A FLICKERING SWARM OF bees circled the hive many stories above ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s head. They were fashioned from light bulbs whose filaments blinked as if to suggest busyness. The illuminated hive formed the heart of the blazing Star of Utah — symbols of a state that had boldly reduced its motto to a single word: “Industry.” It was the centerpiece of a massive pipe organ, draped in American flags, which bellowed forth the Grand March from Verdi’s opera, Aida.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá gazed out at 12,000 spectators as Lucile Francke, dressed as the Queen of Irrigation and Empress of the Valley, climbed the stage of the Mormon Tabernacle and mounted her throne on the uppermost tier of the platform. At 10 a.m. on September 30, 1912, she gave the order for the proceedings of the twentieth annual convention of the National Irrigation Congress to begin.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá had arrived in the city the day before. The streets were decked with patriotic regalia, and overflowed with visitors. The annual state fair was also occurring that week, side by side with the convention of the Irrigation Congress. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá had planned a short stopover in Salt Lake City on his way to California, but decided to extend his stay. Shortly after his arrival he received an invitation to sit on the stage as an honorary guest the following morning.

California 2

Abdu’l-Bahá arrived in San Francisco on Tuesday, October 1, and remained there, with side trips to Oakland, Palo Alto, and Los Angeles, until Friday, October 25. Outwardly, many of the scenes familiar in other cities repeated themselves, as crowds hovered about Him like moths attracted to a light. Inwardly, each individual experienced a satisfying of personal needs that, in one sense, could never be shared, and that, in another, needed to be shared. For in dealing with each individual Abdu’l-Bahá demonstrated a facet of what each person must become in his dealings with others. He raised every act to a universal level by showing that people must become spiritual beings, reacting spontaneously to their environment, as He did, because thoroughly imbued with Bahá’u’lláh’s divine Teachings.

Tuesday, October 01, 1912 3

Tonight the train carrying the beloved Master reached the shores of the Pacific Ocean. Dr [Frederick] D’Evelyn, a devoted Bahá’í, came running as soon as he saw the Master and prostrated himself at His feet. On the way to the city Dr D’Evelyn described for about 15 minutes the yearning of the friends and how they longed to see the Center of the Covenant. When we reached the house especially prepared for ‘Abdu’l-Bahá the waiting friends came out to welcome Him. Mr and Mrs Ralston, Mrs Goodall, Mrs Cooper and the other friends were ecstatically happy to have the honor and bounty of being in His presence and to have supper with Him. 4

From early morning the enthusiasm, eagerness, excitement, joy and singing of the believers surrounded ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, just as in the stories of the iguana and the sun and the moth and the candle. It was the ultimate example of a joyful reunion among the lovers of God. These ecstatic friends offered thanks for the bounty of attaining His presence and being near to Him.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá continuously gave thanks for the confirmations of the Abhá Kingdom and for the power and influence of the Cause of God and encouraged the believers to proclaim the Cause of God. At noon He went for a walk and then took a little rest.

I will describe ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s residence, as He saw it, because it is unique among all the homes in America which have been graced by Him. It is situated on an elevated plot of land on a wide street surrounded by a spacious garden. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá would approach the house, climb a few steps and stand on the porch where He would see fragrant flowers and plants set in pots around the veranda and porch. When the Master entered the house, He would see on His right three large rooms, decorated with fine furniture and many varieties of flowers. Each room opens on the other by means of wide doors covered with velvet curtains, which, when drawn, create one large hall.

Every morning and afternoon the hall is filled with so many friends and seekers that there is standing room only. Many who seek private interviews meet Him on the second floor. On this second floor, accessible by a carpeted staircase, there is a large room occupied by some of His servants and to the left a small tea room. Across the hall is another room occupied by the Master. Attached to this room is a tea room and a bathroom. Situated in a corner of the house, the room commands a view of a large part of the city. At night the lights of the city appear like twinkling stars. Here many Americans, Japanese and Hindus come into ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s presence one after another. Each one has a question or statement to make. Many of the friends bring their children, supplicating His blessings and requesting Persian names for them. One of the Japanese friends at Mrs Goodall’s home in Oakland asked the Master for Persian names for his two sons and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá gave them the names Hasan and Husayn.

The third floor, where we have our rooms, is identical to the second floor. We each have our own room and are able to be close to the Master. The kitchen and dining room are on the first floor where some of the friends have the honor of dining with the Master at His table.

At each dawn, after offering prayers of gratitude, the Master calls His servants and serves us tea with His own hands. Using stories and narratives, He explains issues relating to the blessings of God and expresses gratitude for His divine confirmations. Later the friends arrive to experience the bounty of being with Him and to give praise. Whenever a group assembles, the Master comes downstairs to speak to them about great and lofty matters.

Before both lunch and dinner the Master takes a walk or goes for a ride. Mrs Goodall, Mrs Cooper and Mr and Mrs Ralston send two automobiles every day for His use. Whenever He goes out, the friends watch Him from the doors and windows of their houses. Even among the seekers there is much excitement.

’ Abdu’l-Bahá is reverently received at the churches by the clergymen. Each respectfully accompanies Him to the pulpit and introduces Him to their congregations with glowing praise. They speak of Him as the Prophet of the East, the messenger of peace and tranquillity and attest to His great station and the importance of the teachings. Following His addresses at the meetings, crowds of people continually surround Him, begging for blessings and confirmations. When He returns to His home afterwards He offers praise and gratitude for the confirmations of the Abhá Beauty.

25 September 1912, Talk at Second Divine Science Church, 3929 West Thirty-eighth Avenue, Denver, Colorado 5

The purpose of all the divine religions is the establishment of the bonds of love and fellowship among men, and the heavenly phenomena of the revealed Word of God are intended to be a source of knowledge and illumination to humanity. So long as man persists in his adherence to ancestral forms and imitation of obsolete ceremonials, denying higher revelations of the divine light in the world, strife and contention will destroy the purpose of religion and make love and fellowship impossible. Each of the holy Manifestations announced the glad tidings of His successor, and each One confirmed the message of His predecessor. Therefore, inasmuch as They were agreed and united in purpose and teaching, it is incumbent upon Their followers to be likewise unified in love and spiritual fellowship. In no other way will discord and alienation disappear and the oneness of the world of humanity be established.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to It’s Spiritual Destiny

The Master’s daily routine activities

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

October 1, 1912


  1. Sockett, Robert. “The Biggest Week in the History of Salt Lake City.” 239 Days in America, 1 Oct. 2012, https://239days.com/2012/10/01/biggest-week-history-salt-lake-city/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 165.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=8#section192
  4. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=8#section191
  5. ʻAbduʼl-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, 339-340. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/26#922132408

239 Days in America, Day 173: September 30, 1912 | Salt Lake City

September 30, 1912: The Week Ahead 1

DURING THE PAST WEEK, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá spent three days in Denver, Colorado, before continuing his train ride westward. After spending the night at the Hotel Colorado in Glenwood Springs, amidst the spectacular mountain scenery and natural hot springs, he arrived in Salt Lake City at 2 p.m. yesterday. Today, he is attending the National Irrigation Congress at the Mormon Tabernacle, where he has been invited to sit on the speakers’ platform.

In the week ahead: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá travels to San Francisco. During the train ride, he writes an extensive letter to Agnes Parsons, addressing a wide range of economic issues. We’ll take a close look at the contents of this letter. We’ll also paint a portrait of San Francisco in 1912, and cover ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s meeting with the Mayor of Berkeley.

Minnesota, Nebraska, Colorado, Utah 2

On Monday morning, September 30, 1912, the Salt Lake City Tribune printed an article headed, “COMES TO LECTURE ON BAHAI RELIGION: Leader of Movement Will Explain Tenets to People of Salt Lake”:

“Abdul Baha Abbas, leader of the Bahai movement, which he says has 10,000,000 followers in the world, is in Salt Lake City. He is making a tour of the United States and plans to lecture on his religion here.

“The principal tenets of the Bahai doctrines are the brotherhood of man and the fatherhood of God; the establishment of universal peace, the creation of a universal language and the establishment of a tribunal to which all the nations in the world would come to settle arguments. Its followers must seek out the truth in all matters of religion and conduct for themselves. They must have no pre-conceptions, handed down from their fathers, but must search and decide the truth for themselves.”

‘Abdu’l-Bahá rode all day on Monday, September 30, traveling to California. Among the many things He spoke of to His companions, Mahmúd recalled His saying, “‘The Cause of God is penetrating and ere long it will surround the whole world. I see the expanse of America full of Bahais. Formerly when we asserted in the East that international peace was a necessity the people laughted at us. Now behold the congresses of peace that have come into existence. The law of God is the panacea for all ills. …’”

Monday, September 30, 1912 3

The Master left the Keynon Hotel in Salt Lake City to continue His journey to California. He spoke on various subjects. The following are some of His words:

“The Cause of God is penetrating. It will encompass the whole world. Now as I observe the wilderness of America, I see it full of Bahá’ís. Formerly, when we asserted in the East that international peace and unity of nations was a necessity, the people laughed at us. Now behold the congresses of peace that have come into existence. The law of God is the panacea for all ills because it is in accordance with the needs of the realities of creation. Legislators have devoted considerable discussion to this point. The most distinguished of them concluded that the laws must be derived from the necessary relations inherent in the reality of things. But the divine Manifestation asserted that to institute such laws is beyond human capacity, for human intelligence cannot encompass the realities of things, nor can it comprehend the essential relationships of such realities. Therefore, divine law is necessary, as it embraces the realities and penetrates all things.”

Today the Master was in the best of health and happiness. In spite of all the hardships of the long journey, He was as charmingly fresh as a flower. With unmitigated joy He mentioned the Blessed Beauty, Bahá’u’lláh.

In the afternoon He spoke about spiritual education and intellectual training:

“Peter was devoid of all schooling and so untrained that he could not remember the days of the week. He would tie up seven loaves of bread and open one each day. When he opened the seventh parcel he would know that it was the seventh day and that he had to go to the synagogue. However, under Christ his spiritual education was such that he became the cause of the enlightenment of the world. Indeed, what holy beings are raised up under the shadow of the Word of God!

“I remember once in Tihrán when I was a child, I was sitting by Áqá Siyyid Yahyá Vahíd when Mírzá ‘Alíy-i-Sayyáh came in wearing the táj and carrying the rod of a dervish and with his bare feet covered with mud. Someone asked him where he was coming from. He replied that he had come from the fortress of Máh-Kú, from the august presence of the Báb. Vahíd arose immediately and threw himself at the feet of Sayyáh, and with tears streaming down his face he rubbed his beard on Sayyáh’s feet saying, ‘He has come from the court of the Beloved.’ Although Vahíd was a renowned and illustrious person, still he was humble before the servants of the Threshold of God.”

Among the interesting things we saw along the way were the wooden covers over the railroad tracks. For a distance of some 50 miles deep passes are snow bound during the entire winter and become impassable for the trains. Now, owing to these covers, the difficulties are removed and the train can pass easily through the area. In English, these covers are called snow sheds. The history of California records that in olden times many people became snowbound and perished in these parts. One example is the the Donner party, the story of whose demise is very sad.

25 September 1912, Talk at Second Divine Science Church, 3929 West Thirty-eighth Avenue, Denver, Colorado 4

Each one of the divine religions has established two kinds of ordinances: the essential and the accidental. The essential ordinances rest upon the firm, unchanging, eternal foundations of the Word itself. They concern spiritualities, seek to stabilize morals, awaken intuitive susceptibilities, reveal the knowledge of God and inculcate the love of all mankind. The accidental laws concern the administration of outer human actions and relations, establishing rules and regulations requisite for the world of bodies and their control. These are ever subject to change and supersedure according to exigencies of time, place and condition. For example, during the time of Moses, ten commandments concerning the punishment of murder were revealed in His Book. Divorce was sanctioned and polygamy allowable to a certain extent. If a man committed theft, his hand was cut off. This was drastic law and severe punishment applicable to the time of Moses. But when the time of Christ came, minds had developed, realizations were keener and spiritual perceptions had advanced so that certain laws concerning murder, plurality of wives and divorce were abrogated. But the essential ordinances of the Mosaic dispensation remained unchanged. These were the fundamental realities of the knowledge of God and the holy Manifestations, the purification of morals, the awakening of spiritual susceptibilities—eternal principles in which there is no change or transformation. Briefly, the foundation of the divine religions is one eternal foundation, but the laws for temporary conditions and exigencies are subject to change. Therefore, by adherence to these temporary laws, blindly following and imitating ancestral forms, difference and divergence have arisen among followers of the various religions, resulting in disunion, strife and hatred. Blind imitations and dogmatic observances are conducive to alienation and disagreement; they lead to bloodshed and destruction of the foundations of humanity. Therefore, the religionists of the world must lay aside these imitations and investigate the essential foundation or reality itself, which is not subject to change or transformation. This is the divine means of agreement and unification.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to It’s Spiritual Destiny

Leaving Salt Lake City for San Francisco

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

September 30, 1912


  1. Sockett, Robert. “September 30, 1912: The Week Ahead.” 239 Days in America, 30 Sept. 2012, http://stagingtwo39.wpengine.com/2012/09/30/september-30-1912-the-week-ahead/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 163-164.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=7#section190
  4. ʻAbduʼl-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, 338-339. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/26#987408459

239 Days in America, Day 168: September 25, 1912 | Denver

“The World is a School” 1

“WHEN I ARRIVED IN this country,” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá told the congregation at the Divine Science Church in Denver, Colorado, “I realized that American ideals are indeed most praiseworthy. . . .” The nations of Europe were on the verge of war, he noted, driven by prejudice and fanaticism. “You are free from such prejudice,” he added, “for you believe in the oneness and solidarity of the world of humanity.”

The church that ‘Abdu’l-Bahá spoke in on the evening of September 25, 1912, had a distinctive history. Its founder, Nona Lovell Brooks, was one of the first female pastors in America. She was also an early proponent of the New Thought movement. While the movement held beliefs that were considered unorthodox by mainstream Christianity — among them spiritual healing and the non-existence of evil — it was more mainstream than some of the groups ‘Abdu’l-Bahá had encountered in America, such as the Theosophists or the Free Religionists. The congregation in Denver believed that truth came through the Bible, and that Jesus was a guide for human behavior.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá arrived at 8 p.m. in an automobile put at his disposal by the editor of the Denver Post. He delivered what was perhaps his most expansive exposition yet on the common foundation of the world’s religions, and the barriers to religious unity.

“The world is a school,” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá told his audience, “in which there must be Teachers of the Word of God.” It was a deceptively simple metaphor — one that implied not only that humankind was a single body functioning within a single structure of guidance, but that it progressed over time under the direction of successive teachers.

Minnesota, Nebraska, Colorado, Utah

On September 25 there appeared an article in the [Denver] Post entitled, “ABDUL BA-HA ABBAS—PERSIAN TEACHER—TO CONVERT DENVER.” The reporter, Frances Wayne, wrote:

“A Man of God has come to town.

“With the arrival yesterday of Abdul Ba-ha Abbas, a quicker spirit of tolerance, of brotherly love, of sincerer charity, of all those virtues which lift man above the beast was given wing and must, before his departure, have its effect upon every man and woman who comes within the radius of this wise man of the East.

“Abdul Ba-ha entered the city without any of the glitter or pomp which is the attribute of nobility. He came … companioned by five devoted servants of the faith he preaches and by a reputation for sanity and holiness which makes of the most hardened cynic a respectful spectator.” 2

After a meeting the next day, September 25, He took a walk, and then spoke with the crowds who had gathered. To one person He said, “‘Man is like a bird which is in the cage. A bird cannot get freedom by merely knowing that there are pure breezes, spacious firmament, beautiful gardens, pleasant parks and fountains outside. It must get a power to break the cage and to fly into the pleasant firmament.’” That afternoon He spoke at the home of Mrs. Roberts and that night at a public meeting at the Hotel Shirley. 3

September 25, 1912 4

Most of the people coming today to see the Master were prominent and well-known. Because they so were attracted and transformed by His talks on the divine teachings of the oneness of humanity, universal peace and the principles of the religions, today I wrote to the friends in the East inviting them to come and see how people who had previously had no appreciation for those from the East, especially the Persians, now come in groups to the threshold of the Master and stand waiting their turn to become the recipients of His favor. They consider an interview with Him a source of pride and glory. Many philosophers, professors, clergymen and lecturers come with bowed heads to show their sincere humility. The people from churches and other organizations are also attracted and fascinated, happy to see His life-giving countenance. The Center of the Covenant has caused the Persians to be renowned for their respectability and has crowned the peoples of the East with eternal honor and glory. And how the newspapers of this region praise the Master and the learned and literary people of the West emphasize the importance of these teachings! Notwithstanding this, most of the Persians are asleep and do not understand the cause of their greatness and honor. They are asleep on the bed of negligence and resting in the lap of pride.

After the meeting the Master took a walk. His heart was filled with joy as He said:

“Did you see what a fire was set aglow in the hearts? A person must first be happy and attracted himself to be in a position to transform others. He himself must be impressed in order to impress others. You must act in a way that will make me happy, then you will see what will happen.”

To one who visited Him at the hotel, He remarked:

“I have come to your city and found tall buildings and advancement in material civilization. Now I will lead you to my own city which is the world above. Its administration is the oneness of humanity, its law is international peace, its palaces are ever shining with the lights of the Kingdom, its season is always spring, its trees are ever green, its fruits are fresh and sweet, its sun is ever ascending, its moon is always full, its stars are ever brilliant and its planets are ever circling. That is our city and the Founder is Bahá’u’lláh. We have enjoyed the pleasures of this city and now I invite you to that city. I hope that you will accept this invitation.”

To another He said:

“Man must take flight from the cage of the body and become pure spirit, for the body is a cage which causes difficulties for man and makes him the captive of nature and involves him in all types of misfortunes. But when a person discards all his physical habits, he is freed from all fetters. As physical powers attract the world of nature, so spiritual powers must break these chains. This condition is not realized by thought alone. The powers of nature are ever alert to allure man. The eye is fascinated by beautiful scenery; the ear is entranced by music; the heart is attracted by delights and human passions. A man may be rich but still he wants more because he is attracted by the world of nature; he has means of livelihood yet he desires more. Therefore, the spiritual powers must dominate so that he may be freed from these fetters and attain salvation. Man is like a bird in a cage. A bird cannot attain freedom merely by knowing that in the free world there are pure breezes, spacious skies, beautiful gardens, pleasant parks and fountains; rather, the bird must find a power to break the cage and soar into the wide firmament.”

He then narrated a story about detachment:

“The Persian friends travel mostly on foot. They sleep whenever they get tired. They rest wherever they see a shady tree. Once a person came to an Amír. The Amír wished to present him with a gift and with insistence gave him a robe. Later, when he became tired, he lay down under a tree in the forest with the robe folded under his head. But he could not sleep as he repeatedly imagined that a thief was crouching nearby to take away the robe. At last he rose, threw the robe away and said, ‘As long as this robe is with me, I shall not find rest. To find rest I must give it up.’ How long will you desire a robe for your body? Release your body that you may have no need for a robe.”

A public meeting was held in the afternoon at the home of Mrs Roberts. ’Abdu’l-Bahá walked awhile in the garden outside the house. Although most of the friends watched Him respectfully from a distance, when several ladies from Washington DC saw Him, they ran towards Him, expressing their faith and happiness in the divine teachings which they had heard from His own lips in Washington.

In brief, the Master’s talk that afternoon was to say farewell to the friends, to encourage them in their endeavors to diffuse the fragrances of God and to explain issues related to teaching. They were all set ablaze by His words.

In the evening the proprietor of the Hotel Shirley and the publisher of a newspaper announced that there would be a public meeting in the large hall of the hotel. The spacious room was filled to capacity. I will never forget the joy and excitement of the audience. At times the audience was plunged into a state of sadness and wonder and then into a state of such happiness and joy that peals of laughter could be heard outside the building. It is not possible to describe the excitement and attraction of the people. They all expressed their sadness that the Master was leaving the city. Those men and women staying at the hotel who because of their wealth and pride had previously not deigned to look at us, now sought us out. Everyone was fascinated by the majesty and grandeur of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and gave their hearts to Him.

Talk at Second Divine Science Church, 3929 West Thirty-eighth Avenue, Denver, Colorado 5

One of the forms of prejudice which afflict the world of mankind is religious bigotry and fanaticism. When this hatred burns in human hearts, it becomes the cause of revolution, destruction, abasement of humankind and deprivation of the mercy of God. For the holy Manifestations and divine Founders of religion Themselves were completely unified in love and agreement, whereas Their followers are characterized by bitter antagonism and attitudes of hostility toward each other. God has desired for mankind the effulgence of love, but through blindness and misapprehension man has enveloped himself in veils of discord, strife and hatred. The supreme need of humanity is cooperation and reciprocity. The stronger the ties of fellowship and solidarity amongst men, the greater will be the power of constructiveness and accomplishment in all the planes of human activity. Without cooperation and reciprocal attitude the individual member of human society remains self-centered, uninspired by altruistic purposes, limited and solitary in development like the animal and plant organisms of the lower kingdoms. The lower creatures are not in need of cooperation and reciprocity. A tree can live solitary and alone, but this is impossible for man without retrogression. Therefore, every cooperative attitude and activity of human life is praiseworthy and foreintended by the will of God. The first expression of cooperation is family relationship, which is unreliable and uncertain in its potency, for it is subject to separation and does not permanently cement together the individual members of humanity. There is also a cooperation and oneness in nativity or race which is likewise not efficient, for although its members may agree in general, they differ radically in personal and particular points of view. Racial association, therefore, will not ensure the requirements of divine relationship. There are other means in the human world by which physical association is established, but these fail to weld together the hearts and spirits of men and are correspondingly inefficient. Therefore, it is evident that God has destined and intended religion to be the cause and means of cooperative effort and accomplishment among mankind. To this end He has sent the Prophets of God, the holy Manifestations of the Word, in order that the fundamental reality and religion of God may prove to be the bond of human unity, for the divine religions revealed by these holy Messengers have one and the same foundation. All will admit, therefore, that the divine religions are intended to be the means of true human cooperation, that they are united in the purpose of making humanity one family, for they rest upon the universal foundation of love, and love is the first effulgence of Divinity.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to It’s Spiritual Destiny

People were fascinated with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and considered an interview with Him a source of pride and glory

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

September 25, 1912


  1. Sockett, Robert. “‘The World Is a School.’” 239 Days in America, 25 Sept. 2012, https://239days.com/2012/09/25/deceptively-simple-metaphor-new-thought/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 154.
  3. Ibid, 158.
  4. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=7#section185
  5. ʻAbduʼl-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, 337-338. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/26#322101001

239 Days in America, Day 100: July 19, 1912 | New York

1912: A Year Supreme with Possibilities 1

‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ COULD HARDLY have picked a better time than 1912 to join the conversation about America. “Nineteen twelve,” said Eugene Debs, the Socialist Party’s candidate for President, “is a year supreme with possibilities.” That year marked the highpoint of a flurry of new social movements that had begun two decades earlier…

As ‘Abdu’l-Bahá crossed the country in 1912, the national debate around the Presidential election crystallized the forces of change that had been brimming for twenty years. Woodrow Wilson summed up the challenge facing the American people.

“Now this is nothing short of a new social age,” he said, “a new era of human relationships, a new stage-setting for the drama of life.”

New York City 2

Abdu’l-Bahá continued to explain in a multitude of ways so that all might understand, the object and goal of His endless work and teaching. On July 19, for example, He told the friends:

My weak constitution and excessive work are drawbacks. Otherwise it were possible that many extraordinary souls would have arisen among the friends. As along as such souls do not arise, the real object will not be accomplished. Devotion and capacity to work have been created to some extent in these friends. But the persons whom I mean have different qualities…

They [Mullá Hasan and Mullá ‘Abdu’l-Latif] were deputized by the Mujtahids to see the Blessed Beauty at Mázindarán. The moment they approached Him they were so changed and their reality was so transformed and adjusted that they did not remain indifferent for a moment. After undergoing great troubles and persecutions Mullá ‘Abdu’l-Latif was martyred at the altar of sacrifice. Similarly a blind Indian Sheik became so altered after his meeting the Beloved One that he was always found to be inebriated with joy and happiness. Such persons are required to rise for the Cause of God. Such persons are worthy of the field of service and devotion.

Friday, July 19, 2022 3

A letter was received from Mrs Parsons in Dublin, New Hampshire, begging Him to go there to meet some seekers after truth as well as for a change of surroundings and climate. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, although very tired and weak, spent the afternoon receiving friends and revealing Tablets for the believers. At the evening meeting He spoke about the martyrs of the Faith and visited the son of Varqá, the martyr, Mírzá Valíyu’lláh Khán, who was the recipient of the Master’s loving kindness. He then spoke of the martyrdom of Varqá and his son Rúhu’lláh in a most impressive and dignified manner, paying tribute to and demonstrating His great loyalty to these servants of the threshold of the Blessed Beauty. He then said, ‘It is my last night with you and I exhort you to be loving and united.’ When He finished His talk, all the friends demonstrated their great joy and happiness.

Talk at All Souls Unitarian Church, Fourth Avenue and Twentieth Street, New York, 14 July 1912 4

Still another cause of disagreement and dissension has been the formation of religious sects and denominations. Bahá’u’lláh said that God has sent religion for the purpose of establishing fellowship among humankind and not to create strife and discord, for all religion is founded upon the love of humanity. Abraham promulgated this principle, Moses summoned all to its recognition, Christ established it, and Muḥammad directed mankind to its standard. This is the reality of religion. If we abandon hearsay and investigate the reality and inner significance of the heavenly teachings, we will find the same divine foundation of love for humanity. The purport is that religion is intended to be the cause of unity, love and fellowship and not discord, enmity and estrangement. Man has forsaken the foundation of divine religion and adhered to blind imitations. Each nation has clung to its own imitations, and because these are at variance, warfare, bloodshed and destruction of the foundation of humanity have resulted. True religion is based upon love and agreement. Bahá’u’lláh has said, “If religion and faith are the causes of enmity and sedition, it is far better to be nonreligious, and the absence of religion would be preferable; for we desire religion to be the cause of amity and fellowship. If enmity and hatred exist, irreligion is preferable.” Therefore, the removal of this dissension has been specialized in Bahá’u’lláh, for religion is the divine remedy for human antagonism and discord. But when we make the remedy the cause of the disease, it would be better to do without the remedy.

’Abdu’l-Bahá in America, 1912-2012: Calling America to It’s Spiritual Destiny

The story of Juliet’s rosary

Celebrating the Centenary: The Master in America

Curated by Anne Perry

July 19, 1912


  1. Menon, Jonathan. “1912: A Year Supreme with Possibilities.” 239 Days in America, 19 July 2012, https://239days.com/2012/07/19/1912-a-year-supreme-with-possibilities/.
  2. Ward, Allan L. 239 Days: ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey in America. Wilmette, Ill: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1979, 113-114.
  3. ’Abdu’l-Bahá, and Mirza Mahmud-i-Zarqani. Mahmúd’s Diary: The Diary of Mírzá Mahmúd-i-Zarqání Chronicling ’Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey to America. Edited by Shirley Macias. Translated by Mohi Sobhani. Oxford: George Ronald, 1998. https://bahai-library.com/zarqani_mahmuds_diary&chapter=5#section117
  4. ʻAbduʼl-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, 231. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/16#992623475