Thursday, November 8, 2007

Three Levels of The TRUTH

We've been looking rather closely in the last few posts at the Nature of the Manifestations of God.

Today's excerpt is truly unique in religious literature because it explains how the Manifestations can have a physical body yet still wield the Creative Power of the Word of God.

"...the Manifestations have three planes. First, the physical reality, which depends upon the body; second, the individual reality, that is to say, the rational soul; third, the divine appearance, which is the divine perfections, the cause of the life of existence, of the education of souls, of the guidance of people, and of the enlightenment of the contingent world.

"The physical state is the human state which perishes because it is composed of elements, and all that is composed of elements will necessarily be decomposed and dispersed.

"But the individual reality of the Manifestations of God is a holy reality, and for that reason it is sanctified and, in that which concerns its nature and quality, is distinguished from all other things. It is like the sun, which by its essential nature produces light and cannot be compared to the moon, just as the particles that compose the globe of the sun cannot be compared with those which compose the moon. The particles and organization of the former produce rays, but the particles of which the moon is composed do not produce rays but need to borrow light.

"So other human realities
are those souls who,
like the moon, take light from the sun; but that
Holy Reality is luminous in Himself.

"The third plane of that Being is the Divine Bounty, the splendor of
the Preexistent Beauty, and the radiance of the light of the Almighty. The individual realities of the Divine Manifestations have no separation from the Bounty of God and the Lordly Splendor. In the same way, the orb of the sun has no separation from the light.

"Therefore, it may be said that the ascension of the Holy
Manifestation is simply the leaving of this elemental form. For example, if a lamp illumines this niche, and if its light ceases to illuminate it because the niche is destroyed,
the bounty of the lamp
is not cut off.

"Briefly, in the Holy Manifestations the Preexistent
Bounty is like the light, the individuality is represented by the glass globe, and the human body is like the niche: if the niche is destroyed, the lamp continues to burn. The Divine Manifestations are so many different mirrors because They have a special individuality, but that which is reflected in the mirrors is one sun."

‘Abdu’l-Bahá: Some Answered Questions, Chapter 39: "The Human Condition and the Spiritual Condition of the Divine Manifestations", pp. 154-155

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