In the light of subsequent events, the warnings and appeals of Bahá’u’lláh's writings during this period take on a terrible poignancy:
O ye the elected representatives of the people in every land!... Regard the world as the human body which, though at its creation whole and perfect, hath been afflicted, through various causes, with grave disorders and maladies. Not for one day did it gain ease, nay its sickness waxed more severe, as it fell under the treatment of ignorant physicians, who gave full rein to their personal desires...
We behold it, in this day, at the mercy of rulers so drunk with pride that they cannot discern clearly their own best advantage, much less recognize a Revelation so bewildering and challenging as this....92
This is the Day whereon the earth shall tell out her tidings. The workers of iniquity are her burdens, could ye but perceive it....93
All men have been created to carry forward an ever-advancing civilization. The Almighty beareth Me witness: To act like the beasts of the field is unworthy of man. Those virtues that befit his dignity are forbearance, mercy, compassion and loving-kindness towards all the peoples and kindreds of the earth....94
A new life is, in this age, stirring within all the peoples of the earth; and yet none hath discovered its cause or perceived its motive. Consider the peoples of the West. Witness how, in their pursuit of that which is vain and trivial, they have sacrificed, and are still sacrificing, countless lives for the sake of its establishment and promotion....95
In all matters moderation is desirable. If a thing is carried to excess, it will prove a source of evil.... Strange and astonishing things exist in the earth but they are hidden from the minds and the understanding of men. These things are capable of changing the whole atmosphere of the earth and their contamination would prove lethal....96
In later writings, including those addressed to humanity collectively, Bahá’u’lláh urged the adoption of steps toward what He called the “Great Peace.” These, He said, would mitigate the sufferings and dislocation which He saw lying ahead of the human race until the world’s peoples embrace the Revelation of God and through it bring about the Most Great Peace:
The time must come when the imperative necessity for the holding of a vast, an all-embracing assemblage of men will be universally realized. The rulers and kings of the earth must needs attend it, and, participating in its deliberations, must consider such ways and means as will lay the foundations of the world’s Great Peace amongst men. Such a peace demandeth that the Great Powers should resolve, for the sake of the tranquility of the peoples of the earth, to be fully reconciled among themselves. Should any king take up arms against another, all should unitedly arise and prevent him. If this be done, the nations of the world will no longer require any armaments, except for the purpose of preserving the security of their realms and of maintaining internal order within their territories....
The day is approaching when all the peoples of the world will have adopted one universal language and one common script. When this is achieved, to whatsoever city a man may journey, it shall be as if he were entering his own home.... That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicateth himself to the service of the entire human race.... It is not for him to pride himself who loveth his own country, but rather for him who loveth the whole world. The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens.97
Copyright © 1991, the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís
of the United States. All right reserved.
Published by the Bahá’í International Community,
Office of Public Information, New York.