The Purpose of Bahá’u’lláh’s Covenant: Illustration

Among the results produced by the power of the Covenant was that it enabled ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, despite many obstacles, to entomb the Báb’s remains on Mt. Carmel.17 “‘Every stone of that building, every stone of the road leading to it,’ ‘Abdu’l-Bahá is known to have said, ‘I have, with infinite tears . . . raised and placed in position.’”18 This added “tremendous impetus”19 to the process of the development of the World Center of the Faith that was initiated by Bahá’u’lláh when He revealed the Tablet of Carmel. The same process continues today through our efforts to raise the buildings of the Arc.

“On the morning of March 21st 1909, the day of Naw-Rúz, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá had the marble sarcophagus—gift of the Bahá’ís of Rangoon—carried up the mountain and placed in the vault. That evening he laid in the sarcophagus the wooden casket which contained the inseparable remains of the Báb and the disciple who had died with Him. A solitary lamp lit the scene, so poignant and yet so exultant. The Báb had been cruelly maligned, cruelly wronged, cruelly put to death. His torn and smashed body had had no home for many long years. Now the heart of Carmel was receiving it forevermore. Of this event Zechariah had written: ‘Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The Branch; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the Lord.’ How mysteriously and indubitably had his prophecy come true. ‘The Branch’ had built ‘the temple of the lord,’ had raised His ‘tabernacle’ on His Mountain—on Carmel—the Mountain of God. . . .

“‘When all was finished, and the earthly remains of the Martyr-Prophet of Shíráz were, at long last, safely deposited for their ever-lasting rest in the bosom of God’s holy mountain, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Who had cast aside His turban, removed His shoes and thrown off His cloak, bent low over the still open sarcophagus, His silver hair waving about His head and His face transfigured and luminous, rested His forehead on the border of the wooden casket, and, sobbing aloud, wept with such a weeping that all those who were present wept with Him.’ Sorrows and memories of a lifetime came flooding in His tears. That night, too, sleep parted from His eyes.

“The triumph which ‘Abdu’l-Bahá achieved on that day in 1909 shines with ever-increasing splendor.” —Balyuzi, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá 129-30

Notes:

17 God Passes By 295

18 Quoted in Balyuzi, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá 126

19 Shoghi Effendi, God Passes By 345

*Part of the Series: The Covenant Deepening – Its Meaning and Origin

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