Anonymous wrote:who am I to doubt him?
isn't that interesting! you do not doubt
'Abdu'l-Baha when it serves your purposes, but you do doubt
Him when it does not (i.e. when He says He is the Greatest Branch)! i see we are very logical here
i will focus on this because your whole argument revolved around this one idea:
Anonymous wrote:So "Ancient Root" in the Book of the Covenant "is" God
i would have to respectfully disagree with the conclusion you draw. first of all, what you stated is most obvious: God speaks through Baha'u'llah. so by that logic, wherever
in the Writings that Baha'u'llah is speaking of Himself, He is speaking of God, which does makes sense. When Baha'u'llah is talking about the sadness imprisonment has caused Him, that is God's sadness, by that logic again.
But by the context of the quote it is most clear that Baha'u'llah is referring to Himself as the Ancient Root. Anyone who has studied the english language to a certain extent will automatically recognize that. scholars recognize that (see below).
So your argument would have been valid had Baha'u'llah meant a Prophet of God by the word "Branch," but He didnt, and you still havent proven that. the tree refers to the Covenant. so Baha'u'llah (or God—which ever you like) is the Roots, the tree is the Covenant, and the branches are those who are under the protection of the Covenant (the Guardian, 'Abdu'l-Baha, UHJ). the context of the sentence makes it most clear. and also, this concept can be seen in other words religions such as in Hinduism, a "cosmic tree," where the prophet founder is the foundation of that tree.
granted Tree can refer to progressive revelation, as it obviously does in the Tablet of Ahmad, but its meaning (the meaning of tree) is not restricted to that: "Lo, the Nightingale of Paradise singeth upon the twigs of the Tree of Eternity."
but notice the wording: Baha'u'llah is referring to the Tree of Eternity
, that is, a specific tree. There is no indication that Baha'u'llah is referring to this same Tree of Eternity in His Testament.
So there are many kind of metaphorical Trees that the Writings refer to. Observe:"Ye are the fruits of one tree and the leaves of one branch."
keep that quote in mind and read this. Baha'u'llah refers to Hindiusm and the station of Avatars in His Writings. Look at this quote from the Gita:
"There is an eternal [holy] tree (Asvattha), with roots above in the highest and branches here below. Its leaves are sacred verses. He who knows it knows the Vedas."
The leaves that this quote refers to are sacred verses, not us (you and me). So this is obviously a different tree than the one Baha'u'llah is referring to (above): how can we be the leaves of one tree if the leaves are supposed to be sacred verses? Are we sacred verses? no. again, the metaphor of a Tree is used symbolically to teach us about different concepts (progressive revelation is only one
example), and these above quotes disprove the idea that a Tree can only refer to a tree in which the Manifestations of God are branches, that is, its meaning isnt fixed.
"As we have seen previously (p. 00), Baha'u'llah has referred to the station of the Avatars and of himself in particular as the Tree of Life or the Tree beyond which there is no passing. In Hinduism there is also the concept of a cosmic tree. In the Bhagavad Gita it is written:
There is an eternal [holy] tree (Asvattha), with roots above in the highest and branches here below. Its leaves are sacred verses. He who knows it knows the Vedas. (6)
In his Most Holy Book and his Book of the Covenant, Baha'u'llah refers to himself as the Ancient (Pre-existent) Root of the Divine Tree; while `Abdu'l-Baha is the Most Mighty Branch, to whom all must turn after the passing of Baha'u'llah:
`When the ocean of My presence hath ebbed and the Book of My Revelation is ended, turn your faces toward Him Whom God hath purposed, Who hath branched from this Ancient Root.' The object of this sacred Verse is none other except the Most Mighty Branch [`Abdu'l-Baha]. (7)Thus in the Baha'i writings, as in the Hindu, there is the concept of a cosmic holy tree (beyond which there is no passing); its root (Baha'u'llah) is in heaven; its branches (`Abdu'l-Baha and Shoghi Effendi, see below) stretch down towards earth; from this tree come sacred verses. The passage from the Bhagavad Gita quoted above indicates the importance of knowledge of this tree (the Covenant). It is the foundation of all religious knowledge.
Who wrote that, you may ask?
Moojan Momen, a respected Baha'i scholar, that is right. But according to you in a previous post, no such scholars hold this view. so it seems like it is you and your weak argument vs. respected scholars and their strong arguments.
back to metaphors of trees. Observe, Baha'u'llah yet again makes reference to a tree, roots and all, and does not have the meaning you attach to it:"Ye are even as a spring. If it be changed, so will the streams that branch out from it be changed. Fear God, and be numbered with the godly. In like manner, if the heart of man be corrupted, his limbs will also be corrupted. And similarly, if the root of a tree be corrupted, its branches, and its offshoots, and its leaves, and its fruits, will be corrupted."
while this verse isnt referring to a tree with a capital "T," it shows you once again that the Writings use the symbol of a tree in many different ways
Anonymous wrote:Your personal anecdote about meeting the House member was touching, and I really do hope that he is as good as you think he is. Only God knows the inner-promptings of one's heart, and only God is the judge.
thank you! i am happy you were touched. i thought i needed some pathos
. remember, the rhetorical triangle makes for a good argument!