The Baha'i Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience

 

Selections from the Writings of Baha'u'llah on Tyranny and Oppression

https://fglaysher.com/bahaicensorship/Tyranny.htm 


Epistle to the Son of the Wolf:

 

O Shaykh! My Pen is abashed to recount what actually took place. In the land of Sad (Isfahan)
the fire of tyranny burned with such a hot flame that every fair-minded person groaned aloud.

--

Briefly, in every city the evidences of a tyranny, beyond like or equal, were unmistakably clear
and manifest, and yet none arose in self-defence!

--

The Faith of God hath cried everywhere, by reason of thy tyranny, and yet thou disportest thyself
and art of them that exult. There is no hatred in Mine heart for thee nor for anyone. Every man of
discernment beholdeth thee, and such as are like thee, engulfed in evident folly. Hadst thou
realized that which thou hast done, thou wouldst have cast thyself into the fire, or abandoned
thine home and fled unto the mountains, or wouldst have groaned until thou hadst returned unto
the place destined for thee by Him Who is the Lord of strength and of might.

--

We have heard that the provinces of Persia have been adorned with the adornment of justice.
When We observed closely, however, We found them to be the dawning-places of tyranny and
the daysprings of injustice. We behold justice in the clutches of tyranny. We beseech God to set
it free through the power of His might and His sovereignty.

--

How numerous the oppressors before thee who have arisen to quench the light of God, and how
many the impious who murdered and pillaged until the hearts and souls of men groaned by
reason of their cruelty! The sun of justice hath been obscured, inasmuch as the embodiment of
tyranny hath been stablished upon the throne of hatred, and yet the people understand not. O
foolish one! Thou hast slain the children of the Apostle and pillaged their possessions. Say: Was
it, in thine estimation, their possessions or themselves that denied God? Judge fairly, O ignorant
one that hath been shut out as by a veil from God. Thou hast clung to tyranny, and cast away
justice; whereupon all created things have lamented, and still thou art among the wayward. Thou
hast put to death the aged, and plundered the young. Thinkest thou that thou wilt consume that
which thine iniquity hath amassed? Nay, by Myself! Thus informeth thee He Who is cognizant of
all. By God! The things thou possessest shall profit thee not, nor what thou hast laid up through
thy cruelty. Unto this beareth witness thy Lord, the All-Knowing. Thou hast arisen to put out the
light of this Cause; erelong will thine own fire be quenched, at His behest. He, verily, is the Lord
of strength and of might. The changes and chances of the world, and the powers of the nations,
cannot frustrate Him. He doeth what He pleaseth, and ordaineth what He willeth through the
power of His sovereignty.

--

O Shaykh! While hemmed in by tribulations this Wronged One is occupied in setting down these
words. On every side the flame of oppression and tyranny can be discerned.

 

Kitab-I-Aqdas:

Do thou remember the one whose power transcended thy power, and whose station excelled thy
station. Where is he? Whither are gone the things he possessed? Take warning, and be not of
them that are fast asleep. He it was who cast the Tablet of God behind him when We made
known unto him what the hosts of tyranny had caused Us to suffer. Wherefore, disgrace assailed
him from all sides, and he went down to dust in great loss. Think deeply, O King, concerning
him, and concerning them who, like unto thee, have conquered cities and ruled over men. The
All-Merciful brought them down from their palaces to their graves. Be warned, be of them who
reflect.

--

Hearken ye, O Rulers of America and the Presidents of the Republics therein, unto that which the
Dove is warbling on the Branch of Eternity: "There is none other God but Me, the Ever-Abiding,
the Forgiving, the All-Bountiful." Adorn ye the temple of dominion with the ornament of justice
and of the fear of God, and its head with the crown of the remembrance of your Lord, the Creator
of the heavens. Thus counselleth you He Who is the Dayspring of Names, as bidden by Him
Who is the All-Knowing, the All-Wise. The Promised One hath appeared in this glorified
Station, whereat all beings, both seen and unseen, have rejoiced. Take ye advantage of the Day of
God. Verily, to meet Him is better for you than all that whereon the sun shineth, could ye but
know it. O concourse of rulers! Give ear unto that which hath been raised from the Dayspring of
Grandeur: "Verily, there is none other God but Me, the Lord of Utterance, the All-Knowing."
Bind ye the broken with the hands of justice, and crush the oppressor who flourisheth with the
rod of the commandments of your Lord, the Ordainer, the All-Wise.

--

O people of Constantinople! Lo, from your midst We hear the baleful hooting of the owl. Hath
the drunkenness of passion laid hold upon you, or is it that ye are sunk in heedlessness? O Spot
that art situate on the shores of the two seas! The throne of tyranny hath, verily, been established
upon thee, and the flame of hatred hath been kindled within thy bosom, in such wise that the
Concourse on high and they who circle around the Exalted Throne have wailed and lamented.
We behold in thee the foolish ruling over the wise, and darkness vaunting itself against the light.

--

Say: O people, should ye choose to disbelieve in Him, refrain at least from rising up against Him.
By God! Sufficient are the hosts of tyranny that are leagued against Him!

 

Tablets of Baha'u'llah:

Neither the ascendancy of the oppressor nor the tyranny of the wicked hath been able to thwart
His Purpose. How glorified is His sovereignty, how exalted His dominion!

--

Great God! Although His signs have encompassed the world and His proofs and testimonies are
shining forth and manifest as the light, yet the ignorant appear heedless, nay rather, rebellious.
Would that they had been content with opposition. But at all times they are plotting to cut down
the sacred Lote-Tree. Since the dawn of this Revelation the embodiments of selfishness have, by
resorting to cruelty and oppression, striven to extinguish the Light of divine manifestation. But
God, having stayed their hands, revealed this Light through His sovereign authority and
protected it through the power of His might until earth and heaven were illumined by its radiance
and brightness. Praise be unto Him under all conditions.

--

May Our Glory rest upon the people of Baha  whom neither the tyranny of the oppressor nor the
ascendancy of the aggressor have been able to withhold from God, the Lord of the worlds.
(Effulgences)

--

O thou who dost magnify My praise! Give ear unto that which the people of tyranny ascribe unto
Me in My days. Some of them say: `He hath laid claim to divinity'; others say: `He hath devised
a lie against God'; still others say: `He is come to foment sedition'. Base and wretched are they.
Lo! They are, in truth, enslaved to idle imaginings.

--

O kindreds of the earth! Incline your ears unto the Voice from the divine Lote-Tree which
overshadoweth the world and be not of the people of tyranny on earth-- men who have
repudiated the Manifestation of God and His invincible authority and have renounced His
favours-- they in truth are reckoned with the contemptible in the Book of God, the Lord of all
mankind. (Words of Paradise)

--

Well is it with the king who keepeth a tight hold on the reins of his passion, restraineth his anger
and preferreth justice and fairness to injustice and tyranny.

--

The word of God which the Supreme Pen hath recorded on the sixth leaf of the Most Exalted
Paradise is the following: The light of men is Justice. Quench it not with the contrary winds of
oppression and tyranny.

--

Justice is, in this day, bewailing its plight, and Equity groaneth beneath the yoke of oppression.
The thick clouds of tyranny have darkened the face of the earth, and enveloped its peoples.
Through the movement of Our Pen of glory We have, at the bidding of the omnipotent Ordainer,
breathed a new life into every human frame, and instilled into every word a fresh potency. All
created things proclaim the evidences of this world-wide regeneration. This is the most great, the
most joyful tidings imparted by the Pen of this Wronged One to mankind.

--

Referring to the land of Ta  (Tihran) We have revealed in the Kitab-i-Aqdas that which will
admonish mankind. They that perpetrate tyranny in the world have usurped the rights of the
peoples and kindreds of the earth and are sedulously pursuing their selfish inclinations. The
tyrant [Prince Mahmúd Mírz , the Jal lu'd'Dawlih, Governor of Yazd, Persia.] of the land of Ya 
(Yazd), committed that which hath caused the Concourse on High to shed tears of blood.

--

But where are to be found earnest seekers and inquiring minds? Whither are gone the equitable
and the fair-minded? At present no day passeth without the fire of a fresh tyranny blazing
fiercely, or the sword of a new aggression being unsheathed. Gracious God! The great and the
noble in Persia glory in acts of such savagery that one is lost in amazement at the tales thereof.

--

Verily, the birds abiding within the domains of My Kingdom and the doves dwelling in the rose-
garden of My wisdom utter such melodies and warblings as are inscrutable to all but God, the
Lord of the kingdoms of earth and heaven; and were these melodies to be revealed even to an
extent smaller than a needle's eye, the people of tyranny would utter such calumnies as none
among former generations hath ever uttered, and would commit such deeds as no one in past
ages and centuries hath ever committed. They have rejected the bounty of God and His proofs
and have repudiated the testimony of God and His signs.

--

A year ago an oppressor ruled over this city, and at every instant caused fresh harm. By the
righteousness of the Lord! He wrought that which cast terror into the hearts of men. But to the
Pen of Glory the tyranny of the world hath never been nor will it ever be a hindrance. In the
abundance of Our grace and loving-kindness We have revealed specially for the rulers and
ministers of the world that which is conducive to safety and protection, tranquillity and peace;
haply the children of men may rest secure from the evils of oppression.

--

The Great Being saith: O well-beloved ones! The tabernacle of unity hath been raised; regard ye
not one another as strangers. Ye are the fruits of one tree, and the leaves of one branch. We
cherish the hope that the light of justice may shine upon the world and sanctify it from tyranny. If
the rulers and kings of the earth, the symbols of the power of God, exalted be His glory, arise and
resolve to dedicate themselves to whatever will promote the highest interests of the whole of
humanity, the reign of justice will assuredly be established amongst the children of men, and the
effulgence of its light will envelop the whole earth.

--

There can be no doubt whatever that if the day-star of justice, which the clouds of tyranny have
obscured, were to shed its light upon men, the face of the earth would be completely
transformed.

--

The Great Being, wishing to reveal the prerequisites of the peace and tranquillity of the world
and the advancement of its peoples, hath written: 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 tranquillity 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.
This will ensure the peace and composure of every people, government and nation. We fain
would hope that the kings and rulers of the earth, the mirrors of the gracious and almighty name
of God, may attain unto this station, and shield mankind from the onslaught of tyranny.

--

In these days the tabernacle of justice hath fallen into the clutches of tyranny and oppression.
Beseech ye the One true God--exalted be His glory--not to deprive mankind of the ocean of true
understanding, for were men but to take heed they would readily appreciate that whatever hath
streamed from and is set down by the Pen of Glory is even as the sun for the whole world and
that therein lie the welfare, security and true interests of all men; otherwise the earth will be
tormented by a fresh calamity every day and unprecedented commotions will break out.

--

Be ye warned, O men of understanding. It ill beseemeth the station of man to commit tyranny;
rather it behoveth him to observe equity and be attired with the raiment of justice under all
conditions. Beseech ye the One true God that He may, through the power of the hand of loving-
kindness and spiritual education, purge and purify certain souls from the defilement of evil
passions and corrupt desires, that they may arise and unloose their tongues for the sake of God,
that perchance the evidences of injustice may be blotted out and the splendour of the light of
justice may shed its radiance upon the whole world.

--

The Faith of God hath cried everywhere, by reason of thy tyranny, and yet thou disportest thyself
and art of them that exult. There is no hatred in Mine heart for thee nor for anyone. Every man of
learning beholdeth thee, and such as are like thee, engulfed in evident folly.

--

We have heard that the provinces of Persia have been adorned with the adornment of justice.
When We observed closely, however, We found them to be the dawning-places of tyranny and
the daysprings of injustice. We behold justice in the clutches of tyranny. We beseech God to set
it free through the power of His might and His sovereignty.

--

How numerous the oppressors before thee who have arisen to quench the light of God, and how
many the impious who murdered and pillaged until the hearts and souls of men groaned by
reason of their cruelty! The sun of justice hath been obscured, inasmuch as the embodiment of
tyranny hath been stablished upon the throne of hatred, and yet the people understand not. The
children of the Apostle have been slain and their possessions pillaged. Say: Was it, in thine
estimation, their possessions or themselves that denied God? Judge fairly, O ignorant one that
hath been shut out as by a veil from God. Thou hast clung to tyranny and cast away justice;
whereupon all created things have lamented, and still thou art among the wayward. Thou hast put
to death the aged, and plundered the young. Thinkest thou that thou wilt consume that which
thine iniquity hath amassed? Nay, by Myself! Thus informeth thee He Who is cognizant of all.
By God! The things thou possessest shall profit thee not, nor what thou hast laid up through thy
cruelty. Unto this beareth witness Thy Lord, the All-Knowing.

--

O `Alí! Woes and sorrows are powerless to restrain thy Lord, the All-Merciful. Indeed He hath
risen to champion the Cause of God in such wise that neither the overpowering might of the
world nor the tyranny of the nations can ever alarm Him. He calleth aloud betwixt earth and
heaven, saying: The Promised Day is come. The Lord of creation proclaimeth: Verily, there is no
God besides Me, the Almighty, the All-Bountiful.

--

How vast the number of places that have been ennobled with your blood for the sake of God.
How numerous the cities wherein the voice of your lamentation hath been raised and the wailing
of your anguish uplifted. How many the prisons into which ye have been cast by the hosts of
tyranny. Know ye of a certainty that He will render you victorious, will exalt you among the
peoples of the world and will demonstrate your high rank before the gaze of all nations. Surely
He will not suffer the reward of His favoured ones to be lost.

--

Persevere thou in helping His Cause through the strengthening power of the hosts of wisdom and
utterance. Thus hath it been decreed by God, the Gracious, the All-Praised. Blessed is the
believer who hath in this Day embraced the Truth and the man of fixed resolve whom the hosts
of tyranny have been powerless to affright.

--

In this Day the Straight Path is made manifest, the Balance of divine justice is set and the light of
the sun of His bounty is resplendent, yet the oppressive darkness of the people of tyranny hath,
even as clouds, intervened and caused a grievous obstruction between the Day-Star of heavenly
grace and the people of the world. Blessed is he who hath rent the intervening veils asunder and
is illumined by the radiant light of divine Revelation. Consider how numerous were those who
accounted themselves among the wise and the learned, yet in the Day of God were deprived of
the outpourings of heavenly bounties.

 

Hidden Words:

23. O DWELLERS IN THE CITY OF LOVE! Mortal blasts have beset the everlasting candle,
and the beauty of the celestial Youth is veiled in the darkness of dust. The chief of the monarchs
of love is wronged by the people of tyranny and the dove of holiness lies prisoned in the talons of
owls. The dwellers in the pavilion of glory and the celestial concourse bewail and lament, while
ye repose in the realm of negligence, and esteem yourselves as of the true friends. How vain are
your imaginings!

--

64. O OPPRESSORS OF EARTH! Withdraw your hands from tyranny, for I have pledged
Myself not to forgive any man's injustice. This is My covenant which I have irrevocably decreed
in the preserved tablet and sealed it with My seal of glory.


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