The Rabbi and ‘Abdu’l-Baha | Part 1

August 21, 2021
The Rabbi and ‘Abdu’l-Baha | Part 1

Virtues | Knowledge

The Rabbi and ‘Abdu’l-Baha
Part 1

Source: Star of the West Vol. 3 Issue 6

ENTERING the room the Rabbi saluted, which was answered by ‘Abdu’l-Baha in like manner.

‘Abdu’l-Baha: “You are most welcome Rabbi.”

Rabbi: “I have long desired to meet you.”

‘Abdu’l-Baha: “Very good; very good.”

Rabbi: “Your address yesterday was excellent. I have had the pleasure of hearing you upon two other occasions, but your address of yesterday had an extraordinary universality. You have very clearly established the teachings of brotherhood but I am afraid that, although your principles are very lofty they will not be accepted by all the religionists and the workers for peace.”

‘Abdu’l-Baha: “Reality will always be victorious. No one can stand before the onward march of reality. The phenomenal is always conquered by the eternal. All the contingent beings are defeated by the will of heaven. One small Arabian boy can lead two thousand camels in the Sahara. One intelligent Hindu boy can conquer an elephant.”

Rabbi: “It is true. In the Bible we have the statement that ‘A little child shall lead them.'”

‘Abdu’l-Baha: “Truth will always be victorious; therefore it does not know defeat but the people of reality must exert great effort, and if the people of reality neglect to display this effort that is another matter. The people of reality must demonstrate their willingness in this direction. They must realize that the greatest reality of this age is the oneness of the human world. They must forget traditions and imitations of the past. For instance, if we look …[at] transubstantiation; that is, the change of the bread and wine into the body of Christ. If we ponder a little we realize that this is a non-essential. It is imitation and the reverse of reality.

Again, if we look at …images and worship them as deities… It is evident that these are superstitions and imaginations. The worship the [animal], the stone, the water and the forces of nature—all these are imitations of the past and they have no foundation whatever.”

Rabbi: “Do you then regard the transubstantiation as being on the same ground as the worshipping of idols?”

‘Abdu’l-Baha: “All these are imitations. They have no reality. As these are the opposite of realities, therefore they have no foundation. Everything that keeps man away from God, is an idol. Everything which detracts man’s attention from God is an idol, no matter what it is.”

Rabbi: “Then every channel between God and His creature is an idol?”

‘Abdu’l-Baha: “Consider, let us not bind ourselves with imitations…”

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