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divine things are too deep

Posted on November 1, 2017 at 1:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Hi! This is my #1 post for the November 2017 #bahaiblogging challenge. I am posting here on my website, and also on Facebook. 

Have you ever met someone at a formal event, been asked to share your thoughts on a deep and important topic, and been stuck for words? Happens all the time, right? Divine things, as the saying goes are "too deep to be expressed by common words." ('Abdu'l-Baha) Love is such a divine thing...

"Abdu'l-Baha, who was the son of Baha'u'llah, the Prophet-Founder of the Baha'i Faith, said these words at a wedding. He had just performed the wedding ceremony - his first time since doing this service for his own daughters. Before the wedding he spoke to the bride and groom separately, and privately, asking each if they loved the other with "all your heart and soul?" After the wedding, at dinner, a guest asked 'Abdu'l-Baha why the teachings of all religions are expressed largely by parables and metaphors and not in the plain language of the people.

So next time I am stuck for words, I will try expressing love instead. It isn't easy, especially as the days get shorter and colder (yes, even in sunny South Carolina, I am cold!) I've caught myself becoming stingier and stingier. I crave comfort food and want my friends and family to comfort me, not the other way around...

Meanwhile, I just got an idea for this November blog series. Let's take a look at parables. There are plenty of parables in the New Testament, and I also want to find some parables from other religions as well. Do you know any good ones? Feel free to post your suggestions, and we can start tomorrow.

Peace and Love,
Niki Daniels

Ocean of Thought

Posted on July 29, 2014 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Another quote from the Ocean series is:

This analogy links the world of the physical (speech) with the world of the spiritual (thoughts). We can't see what someone is thinking, but if they say good things (not just nice things, think of Fair as describing Beautiful and Just) then we can be fairly certain their thoughts are also clean, kind and honorable.

As Jesus said, "What goes into someone's mouth does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them." (Matthew 15:11)

The Boat and the Ocean

Posted on July 24, 2014 at 8:20 PM Comments comments (0)

"In each and every heart, the Unseen is seen. You yourself are the Ocean and the Boat."

This quote from the Sikh Faith sounds like a Zen Buddhist koan (a 'paradox to be meditated upon that is used to train Zen Buddhist monks to abandon ultimate dependence on reason and to force them into gaining sudden intuitive enlightenment' - Merriam Webster dictionary). It reminds me of this quote from the Baha'i Faith: 

"This most great, this fathomless and surging Ocean is near, astonishingly near, unto you. Behold it is closer to you than your life-vein!"

So what is the 'ocean' an analogy for in these scriptures? In Baha'i texts the ocean is often a symbol of the Revelation of a Prophet or 'Manifestation' of God (a man or woman destined to be the mediator between us and the Creator). The revelation of any particular prophet is manifested in part in their Teachings. 

In the Sikh quote I see the Ocean as the Spirit of Life or Holy Spirit - that divine Spark that some religions teach differentiates us from other animals. The Boat is the human body. It is restricted to a particular place and time, while the Ocean in comparison is practically limitless. But inside us (actually in our 'heart,' which it seems to me doesn't mean our physical hearts that pump blood, so in a sense it is not really 'inside' us at all) we contain an unseen and often-times unfelt Ocean of our own.

Do you have a favorite quote or song that uses the analogy of an ocean (or sea)?

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