Seven Valleys Of Baha'u'llah





_In the Name of God, the Clement, the Merciful._



Praise be to God Who hath made being to come forth from nothingness;

graven upon the tablet of man the secrets of preexistence; taught him from

the mysteries of divine utterance that which he knew not; made him a

Luminous Book unto those who believed and surrendered themselves; caused

him to witness the creation of all things (Kullu Shay') in this black and

ruinous age, and to speak forth from the apex of eternity with a wondrous

voice in the Excellent Temple(1): to the end that every man may testify,

in himself, by himself, in the station of the Manifestation of his Lord,

that verily there is no God save Him, and that every man may thereby win

his way to the summit of realities, until none shall contemplate anything

whatsoever but that he shall see God therein.



And I praise and glorify the first sea which hath branched from the ocean

of the Divine Essence, and the first morn which hath glowed from the

Horizon of Oneness, and the first sun which hath risen in the Heaven of

Eternity, and the first fire which was lit from the Lamp of Preexistence

in the lantern of singleness: He who was Ahmad in the kingdom of the

exalted ones, and Muhammad amongst the concourse of the near ones, and

Mahmud(2) in the realm of the sincere ones. ...by whichsoever (name) ye

will, invoke Him: He hath most excellent names(3) in the hearts of those

who know. And upon His household and companions be abundant and abiding

and eternal peace!



Further, we have harkened to what the nightingale of knowledge sang on the

boughs of the tree of thy being, and learned what the dove of certitude

cried on the branches of the bower of thy heart. Methinks I verily inhaled

the pure fragrances of the garment of thy love, and attained thy very

meeting from perusing thy letter. And since I noted thy mention of thy

death in God, and thy life through Him, and thy love for the beloved of

God and the Manifestations of His Names and the Dawning-Points of His

Attributes--I therefore reveal unto thee sacred and resplendent tokens from

the planes of glory, to attract thee into the court of holiness and

nearness and beauty, and draw thee to a station wherein thou shalt see

nothing in creation save the Face of thy Beloved One, the Honored, and

behold all created things only as in the day wherein none hath a mention.



Of this hath the nightingale of oneness sung in the garden of

Ghawthiyyih.(4) He saith: And there shall appear upon the tablet of thine

heart a writing of the subtle mysteries of 'Fear God and God will give you

knowledge';(5) and the bird of thy soul shall recall the holy sanctuaries

of preexistence and soar on the wings of longing in the heaven of 'walk

the beaten paths of thy Lord',(6) and gather the fruits of communion in

the gardens of 'Then feed on every kind of fruit.'(7)



By My life, O friend, wert thou to taste of these fruits, from the green

garden of these blossoms which grow in the lands of knowledge, beside the

orient lights of the Essence in the mirrors of names and

attributes--yearning would seize the reins of patience and reserve from out

thy hand, and make thy soul to shake with the flashing light, and draw

thee from the earthly homeland to the first, heavenly abode in the Center

of Realities, and lift thee to a plane wherein thou wouldst soar in the

air even as thou walkest upon the earth, and move over the water as thou

runnest on the land. Wherefore, may it rejoice Me, and thee, and whosoever

mounteth into the heaven of knowledge, and whose heart is refreshed by

this, that the wind of certitude hath blown over the garden of his being,

from the Sheba of the All-Merciful.



Peace be upon him who followeth the Right Path!



And further: The stages that mark the wayfarer's journey from the abode of

dust to the heavenly homeland are said to be seven. Some have called these

Seven Valleys, and others, Seven Cities. And they say that until the

wayfarer taketh leave of self, and traverseth these stages, he shall never

reach to the ocean of nearness and union, nor drink of the peerless wine.

The first is





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