Editor’s Note: In the Baha’i faith, the person of Baha’u’llah was deemed as the “Glory of God” whose presence was revered throughout. His personal ascension took place on May 29 with commemorations occurring today.
On 29 May 1892, after four decades of bountiful radiance, from the first intimation of its rising glory in the Siyah-Chal and Baghdad to its midday splendour in Adrianople and ‘Akka, the Sun of Baha—as ‘Abdu’l-Baha memorably relayed in His telegram informing Sulṭan ‘Abdu’l-Ḥamid of the ascension of Baha’u’llah—had set. Yet the setting of that Sun was not followed by the dark of night but by the reflection of its glory in the Moon of the Covenant, lighting the path ahead, towards the attainment of Baha’u’llah’s ultimate purpose: the unification of humanity.
“THE world’s great Light, once resplendent upon all mankind, hath set, to shine everlastingly from the Abha Horizon, His Kingdom of fadeless glory, shedding splendor upon His loved ones from on high and breathing into their hearts and souls the breath of eternal life….
“To them is proclaimed this celestial call, revealed in His Most Holy Book: “Let not your hearts be perturbed, O people, when the glory of My Presence is withdrawn, and the ocean of My utterance is stilled. In My presence amongst you there is a wisdom, and in My absence there is yet another, inscrutable to all but God, the Incomparable, the All-Knowing. Verily, We behold you from Our realm of glory, and shall aid whosoever will arise for the triumph of Our Cause with the hosts of the Concourse on high and a company of Our favored angels.”
The Sun of Truth, that Most Great Light, hath set upon the horizon of the world to rise with deathless splendor over the Realm of the Limitless. In His Most Holy Book He calleth the firm and steadfast of His friends: “Be not dismayed, O peoples of the world, when the daystar of My beauty is set, and the heaven of My tabernacle is concealed from your eyes. Arise to further My Cause, and to exalt My Word amongst men.”
As to the influence of holy Beings and the continuance of Their grace to mankind after They have put away Their human form, this is, to Baha’is, an indisputable fact. Indeed, the flooding grace, the streaming splendors of the holy Manifestations appear after Their ascension from this world. The exaltation of the Word, the revelation of the power of God, the conversion of God-fearing souls, the bestowal of everlasting life—it was following the Messiah’s martyrdom that all these were increased and intensified. In the same way, ever since the ascension of the Blessed Beauty, the bestowals have been more abundant, the spreading light is brighter, the tokens of the Lord’s might are more powerful, the influence of the Word is much stronger, and it will not be long before the motion, the heat, the brilliance, the blessings of the Sun of His reality will encompass all the earth.