April 8, 2011

A Message of Love from Hand of the Cause of God Enoch Olinga

(After his triumphant tour through the Western Hemisphere, Hand of the Cause of Cod Enoch Olinga sent the following letter to all the National Spiritual Assemblies. It is an example of the love and understanding of our problems, which characterized his entire visit.)

Enroute to the Pacific and Asia

October 28, 1970

National Spiritual Assemblies of the Baha'is of South America, Central America, North America, and the islands of the Caribbean.

Beloved Baha'i friends,

Before leaving the Western Hemisphere, it is my wish to try to express the love and gratitude flowing from my heart to all the believers who have welcomed, assisted and sustained me in these travels. For the past six months, in South, Central and North America, and the Antilles, rare experiences in the company of the soldiers of the Blessed Perfection have been granted me. Indeed, when I recall how the beloved Guardian expressed the hope to me that some day I would travel in the Western Hemisphere, to meet the friends and teach His Cause, it is now one more sign to me of the kindness of the Loving Creator to His servants that this experience should have come my way and these months be spent in a manner so pleasing to my soul.

For what can bring more happiness than seeing, from the tip of South America to the far reaches of Alaska, the triumphs of self-sacrificing soldiers in the army of the Blessed Beauty? The promises of the Master, 'Abdu'l-Baha, are everywhere evidenced in their fruition, for now that the healing Word of God is being carried to the masses, they are entering our beloved Faith in troops and we are seeing the rapid expansion and simultaneous consolidation predicted for these days.

So many moments of joy and profound gratitude have been experienced during these months. It is impossible to cite them all, but to share the sweetness of one of them, I would mention the evening spent in Harlem in the company of Mr. John Birks Gillespie and a large group of Baha'i friends. All my memories of visiting this beloved friend and brother, dear John Birks, are treasured, and it is my feeling and my prayer that with his deep devotion to the Cause and his many spiritual qualities, he will be of great service to humanity and hopefully to the work of the Faith in Africa.

And so it is with all the soldiers on fire with the love of God in this day.

With many, in different lands, I shared the healing memory of an evening spent in the presence of the beloved Guardian, Shoghi Effendi, when he said to us that Baha'is should be very happy, always; that we should never permit anything to disturb the tranquility of our heart, or its peace and happiness, for we are really living in wonderful days.

The beloved Guardian said that Baha'is should be very happy indeed that they have been enabled by God Himself to recognize the greatness of this day, to accept the universal Manifestation of God and to wear His holy name. That is the first condition, the condition of happiness and gratitude to our Father that we have been permitted to recognize His Cause in this great day.

And then the beloved Guardian reminded us that the Master taught that although there are very few states in the spiritual world, there are many spiritual conditions and degrees of perfection. Therefore, it is not enough to say that we believe in Baha’u’llah, but we must also accept this Supreme Manifestation and attempt to promote His Cause. Baha'is are spiritually higher than those who are not believers, for they have fulfilled that requirement made of man in the day of the coming of each Messenger of God, to recognize and, accept that Messenger. He is the Manifestation of Truth, and the Revealer of the Will of God, of which the Lord Jesus Christ spoke when He encouraged us to pray that the Will of God "may be done on earth as it is in heaven."

One evening the beloved Guardian was explaining to us that an African Baha'i in a small African village who believes that Baha'u'llah is the Manifestation of God for this day, that He is the return of the spiritual reality of all the Manifestations, the Lord of the Vineyard – that Baha'i, unable to read and write, before God occupies a position higher than the honored prelates of Christendom.

And so the beloved Guardian made clear to us that many people believe the principles and find them beautiful, but they remain sympathizers, while a Baha'i is the one who believes in the divine unity, and makes no distinction between the prophets of God, centering his energy in promoting the Faith of God for this day through the teachings of the Ancient Beauty, Baha'u'llah.

Therefore, dear friends, with this in our hearts, with the assurance of the beloved Guardian himself as to our high station, may we not review the Writings and the messages from the Universal House of Justice, to find what our share of heroic action in the army of the Blessed Beauty may be in this day? Inspired by the Writings of the Glory of God, Baha'u'llah and His Holiness the Exalted Báb, encouraged and supported by the example of the blessed Center of the Covenant, 'Abdu'l-Baha, and our beloved Guardian, Shoghi Effendi, with the supreme, infallible body, the Universal House of Justice to channel our efforts to their fullest advantage, may we become soldiers armed with divine instruments. These instruments are love, devotion to the Faith, steadfastness, service, and complete attraction to the Abha kingdom. Wherever we go with these arms, we will conquer that city and that place.

O my beloved sisters and brothers, make effort in this manifest Day of God and win the favor, grace and pleasure of the Lord. "What result is forthcoming from material rest, tranquility, luxury and attachment to this corporeal world,"asked the beloved Master, "it is evident that the man who pursues these things will in the end become afflicted with regret and loss." We should close our eyes to these things, and "these thoughts, long for eternal life, the sublimity of the world of humanity, the celestial developments, the Holy Spirit, the promotion of the Word of God, the guidance of the inhabitants of the globe, the promulgation of universal peace and the proclamation of the oneness of the world of humanity.

This is the WORK!"

The Master used to say that the general does not love most the man in the back of the ranks -- He loves most the man in the front, leading the way.

I hope and pray that "with hearts overflowing with the love of God, with tongues commemorating the mention of God, with eyes turned to the kingdom of God" you will, all of you, arise like never before and diffuse the divine fragrances, assured that "in whatever meeting ye enter, in the apex of that meeting the Holy Spirit shall be waving and the heavenly confirmations of the Blessed Perfection shall encompass" you.

With deepest loving Baha'i greetings to each and every one of you, and assurance of my prayers for your unfailing guidance, protection and confirmation in the Cause of our Beloved,

Enoch Olinga,

Hand of the Cause of God

(Baha'i News, January 1971)