Follow ʻAbdu’l-Bahá’s Journey Across America – August, 1912

Centenary Year ~ Reflecting on the Life of ‘Abdu’l-Baha  

August 31, 1912

Day 143: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Tells Canada: “Be Happy!” 239 Days article
In Montreal, Canada, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá tells newspapers that Canadians should thank God that they are so blessed.

Diary Entries: Montreal 
Mahmud’s Diary: A pastor and a reporter were among the first Canadians to visit ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
Mahmud’s Diary: Universities should allow students opportunities to expound divine philosophies along with natural sciences
Mahmud’s Diary: “Every city in which the remembrance of God is raised is a divine city.”
Mahmud’s Diary: Canadian custom officer didn’t see a need to inspect ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s luggage
Mahmud’s Diary: To walk in the footsteps of the Disciples of Christ
Mahmud’s Diary: An example of the power of the Word of God
Mahmud’s Diary: “…this is the time to work. We must not think of our fatigue.”

News Clips
The Montreal Daily Star  Apostle of Peace Here Predicts an Appalling War in the Old World Europe Heading Straight for a Terrific Conflict, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Declares. “Be Happy! Your in Canada, live in a magnificent, peaceful country. Be happy!”

Bahá’í Shrine in Montreal The Significance of the Shrine ‘Abdu’l-Bahá stayed in the home of May and William Sutherland Maxwell during His ten-day visit to Montreal in 1912. This house is now the only Bahá’í Shrine in Canada because of its association with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s visit. (Scroll down to video with roses)

August 30, 1912

Day 142: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Arrives in Montreal 239 Days article
‘Abdu’l-Bahá crosses into Canada to visit May Maxwell of Montreal, one of the first westerners to meet him in ‘Akká in 1899.

Diary Entries: Montreal 
Mahmud’s Diary: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá arrives in Montreal and goes directly to Maxwell home with Sutherland Maxwell

`Abdu’l-Bahá in Canada `Abdu’l-Bahá’s visit to Montreal from August 30, to September 9, 1912.

August 29, 1912

Day 141: William Henry Randall and a Glass of Grape Juice 239 Days article
An unexpected encounter with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá leaves one Bostonian with a lesson in humility.
Great is the power of the intellect but until it becomes the servant of the heart it is of little avail.

Diary Entries: Malden, MA
Mahmud’s Diary: A “… your reward is with Bahá’u’lláh.”

News Clips
Portland Oregon Journal Persian Head Of Bahá’ís Will Pay Portland A Visit He has been received with unusual respect and esteem, not only by the followers of his teaching but also by churches of many denominations, institutions of learning, peace organizations and societies of various kinds. Preparations are under way to receive the famous Persian upon his arrival in Portland in a manner befitting his dignity and great learning.(Gives the history of the persecution of the Bab and Baha’u’llah) Abbas, Effendi…had been born in Teheran at the very hour when the Báb was first uttering his proclamation of the great Coming in the city of Shiraz. Bahá’u’lláh…appointed his son, Abbas, Effendi, to be the “Center of the Covenant” of unity and peace…He addressed the congregation in St. John’s church, Westminster, two days after his arrival in London, at the invitation of Bishop Wilberforce. In April, 1912, he came to America to keep an engagement with the Lake Mohonk Peace society. To the students at Columbia he praised their efforts to acquire knowledge of material sciences, and urged their greater attention to spiritual sciences. He likened the material civilization to the body of which the spiritual civilization is the soul, and said that, where as the soul might live without the body, the body could not exist without the soul. He likened the two civilizations to wings; if either were crippled, no true attainment were possible.

Promulgation of Universal Peace: Transcriptions of Talks by ‘Abdu’l-Baha in the United States and Canada

PUP:  Talk at Home of Madame Morey, Malden, Massachusetts God Has Given Man the Eye of Investigation
Nations are devoted to conquest and bloodshed, filled with the animus of religious hatred, seeking the good pleasure of God by killing and destroying those whom in their blindness they consider enemies…That which is forbidden by God they consider acceptable to Him…He must not be an imitator or blind follower of any soul. He must not rely implicitly upon the opinion of any man without investigation; nay, each soul must seek intelligently and independently, arriving at a real conclusion and bound only by that reality…Through failure to investigate reality the Jews rejected Jesus Christ…(Goes into great detail on this subject) Each human creature has individual endowment, power and responsibility in the creative plan of God. Therefore, depend upon your own reason and judgment and adhere to the outcome of your own investigation; otherwise, you will be utterly submerged in the sea of ignorance and deprived of all the bounties of God. Turn to God, supplicate humbly at His threshold, seeking assistance and confirmation, that God may rend asunder the veils that obscure your vision. Then will your eyes be filled with illumination, face to face you will behold the reality of God and your heart become completely purified from the dross of ignorance, reflecting the glories and bounties of the Kingdom…man must free himself from the weeds of ignorance, thorns of superstitions and thistles of imitations that he may discover reality in the harvests of true knowledge. Otherwise, the discovery of reality is impossible, contention and divergence of religious belief will always remain, and mankind, like ferocious wolves, will rage and attack each other in hatred and antagonism…. Just now the soil of human hearts seems like black earth, but in the innermost substance of this dark soil there are thousands of fragrant flowers latent. We must endeavor to cultivate and awaken these potentialities, discover the secret treasure in this very mine and depository of God, bring forth these resplendent powers long hidden in human hearts. Then will the glories of both worlds be blended and increased and the quintessence of human existence be made manifest….

August 28, 1912

Day 140: The Responsibilities of Oneness 239 Days article
At Boston’s Metaphysical Club, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá offers advice on how the abstract notion of oneness applies in everyday life.
“We must exercise extreme patience, sympathy and love toward all mankind,” he said, “considering no soul as rejected. If we look upon a soul as rejected, we have disobeyed the teachings of God.”

Diary Entries: Malden, MA
Mahmud’s Diary: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá attributes uplifting meetings to confirmations and assistance from Bahá’u’lláh
Mahmud’s Diary: An example of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s caring nature and patience
Mahmud’s Diary: Receptive souls were touched by just entering the presence of the Master

Most likely the Talk referenced yesterday by the Chairman of the Theosophical Society in his introduction of ‘Abdu’l-Baha
PUP: May 23, 1912 Talk at Free Religious Association, or Unitarian Conference Boston, Massachusetts All Created Forms are Progressive in their Planes
(See below: Mahmud’s Diary: August 27, 1912 Malden, MA – Chairman of Theosophical Society gives impressive introduction about ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to audience of five-hundred)

August 27, 1912

Day 139: Women’s Work 239 Days article
At Franklin Square House in Boston, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá speaks to working women about how to get ahead.

Diary Entries: Malden, MA
Mahmud’s Diary: Chairman of Theosophical Society gives impressive introduction about ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to audience of five-hundred

Promulgation of Universal Peace: Transcriptions of Talks by ‘Abdu’l-Baha in the United States and Canada

PUP:  Talk at Metaphysical Club Boston, Massachusetts The Progressive and Perpetual Motion of Elemental Atoms I shall discourse upon a subject involving one of the divine questions, a question of religious and metaphysical importance — namely, the progressive and perpetual motion of elemental atoms throughout the various degrees of phenomena and the kingdoms of existence. It will be demonstrated and become evident that the origin and outcome of phenomena are identical and that there is an essential oneness in all existing things. This is a subtle principle appertaining to divine philosophy and requiring close analysis and attention.

August 26, 1912

Day 138: August 26, 1912: The Week Ahead 239 Days article
As ‘Abdu’l-Bahá continues his stay in the Boston area, we take a look at the week ahead.

Diary Entries: Malden, MA
Mahmud’s Diary: “In the world of existence nothing is greater than faithfulness …”
This visit is a proof of faithfulness, proof that we have not forgotten one another. In the world of existence nothing is greater than faithfulness, for it allows love to remain unimpaired in spite of the length of time. Behold how faithful were those blessed souls in Persia…

News Clips
Boston Massachusetts Evening Transcript  ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Returns – Public Invited to Hear Persian Scholar in Metaphysical Club Hall Tonight Sunday evening…‘Abdu’l-Bahá [had] addressed an audience which thronged the hall, in the characteristically calm and serene manner about the spiritual forces of life and the many manifestations, on all sides, of the close relation between the unseen and the real world

Promulgation of Universal Peace: Transcriptions of Talks by ‘Abdu’l-Baha in the United States and Canada

PUP: Talk at Franklin Square House Boston, Massachusetts
Evidence of Woman’s Superiority,… Her Service in Universal Peace

He gives examples of women in history that proved themselves to be of superlative capacity and determination..peers of man in intellect and equally, courageous. (Zenobia, Cleopatra, Russian Queen, Catherine, Victoria, Queen of England, Mary Magdalene, became the means of consolation and confirmation to the disciples of Christ, and Qurratu’l-‘Ayn who was listened to reverently by the most learned men, were most respectful in her presence, and none dared to contradict her.)

Each is the complement of the other in the divine creative plan…The only distinction between them in the sight of God is the purity and righteousness of their deeds and actions…Demonstrations of force…are neither becoming nor effective in the cause of womanhood and equality. Woman must especially devote her energies and abilities toward the industrial and agricultural sciences, seeking to assist mankind in that which is most needful.

Therefore, strive to show in the human world that women are most capable and efficient, that their hearts are more tender and susceptible than the hearts of men, that they are more philanthropic and responsive toward the needy and suffering, that they are inflexibly opposed to war and are lovers of peace. Strive that the ideal of international peace may become realized through the efforts of womankind, for man is more inclined to war than woman, and a real evidence of woman’s superiority will be her service and efficiency in the establishment of universal peace.

August 25, 1912

Day 137: A Few Thoughts on the Potential of Youth 239 Days article
One of our writers shares her thoughts, and a story, about the capabilities of young people.
‘Abdu’l-Baha… the period of youth “stands out as the choicest time of human life.” He told young people to be distinguished for their “loftiness of purpose,” “determination, noble mindedness,” and “tenacity.”

Diary Entries: Malden, MA
Mahmud’s Diary: Conquest of the dominion of the hearts and souls of men by the Manifestations of God
Mahmud’s Diary: Visiting the sick He stopped by the home of one of the friends whose wife was ill with consumption [tuberculosis].

Promulgation of Universal Peace: Transcriptions of Talks by ‘Abdu’l-Baha in the United States and Canada

PUP:  Talk at the New Thought Forum, Metaphysical Club Boston, Massachusetts
Rebirth of the Spirit of Man is Through the Science of the Love of God

Therefore, we must strive with life and heart that the material and physical world may be reformed, human perception become keener, the merciful effulgence manifest and the radiance of reality shine…Therefore, thoughts must be lofty and ideals uplifted in order that the world of humanity may become assisted in new conditions of reform…

If these material tendencies are in such need of reformation, how much greater the need in the world of the human spirit, the world of human thought, perception, virtues and bounties! Is it possible that that need has remained stationary while the world has been advancing in every other condition and direction? It is impossible.

Therefore, we must invoke and supplicate God and strive with the utmost effort in order that the world of human existence in all its degrees may receive a mighty impulse, complete human happiness be attained and the resuscitation of all spirits and emanations be realized through the boundless favor of the mercy of God.

August 24, 1912

Day 136: “The Unmistakable and Universal Reformation” 239 Days article
‘Abdu’l-Bahá improvises a talk on spiritual reformation at the New Thought Forum in Boston.

Diary Entries: Malden, MA
Mahmud’s Diary: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá revealed Tablets and received visitors
Mahmud’s Diary: Forgiveness of sins depends upon one’s obedience to the admonitions of the Prophets of God

News Clips
The Montreal Daily Star ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Oriental Prophet, and Leader, Here Soon. HEAD OF WORLD-WIDE “BAHAI” PEACE CULT – Unity of All Religion and Universal Peace is His Gospel. “War must cease,” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá declares. “There is something above and beyond patriotism, and it is better to love your fellowmen than to love only your countrymen. When we see this and know in very truth the brotherhood of man, war will appear to us in its true light as an outrage on civilization, an act of madness and blindness.

Magazine Clip from 1911
The Light in the Lantern by E. S. (Ethel Stefana) Stevens published in Everybody’s Magazine, pages 775-786 – 1911-12-01 (Everybody’s Magazine was an American magazine published from 1899 to 1929. The magazine was headquartered in New York City.)

Come with me now to the Master’s home in Haifa, that you may hear from his own lips the simple tenets of the Bahá faith. We shall have scant trouble in finding it, for every dragoman, cab-driver, and street urchin in the town will vociferously urge his services as guide to the residence of the Persian Prophet, as Abbas Effendi is locally called. The hour when the sun sinks behind the Samarian hills is his time for receiving visitors; and, however long and tiring his day’s work has been, he never refuses to admit and talk with those who have any just claim upon his time, though no Bahá’í would presume to visit Haifa without first obtaining his permission.

His white-walled, red-roofed, rose-smothered house, different in no respect from the dwellings of the Saviour’s day, is as simple within as without, for he lives, though wholly without affectation, in the utmost plainness. Leaving our shoes without the door, after the Oriental fashion, we enter a reception room, spacious, airy, and spotless, its woodwork and undecorated walls painted white, and the low divans that encircle it covered in unpretentious linen. It is a room with many windows, and jars of blushing roses stand on every table, for, as a result of his long imprisonment, perhaps, Abbas Effendi requires a wealth of light and flowers.

Just at sunset, the pilgrims and disciples enter with bent heads and folded hands and seat themselves silently about the room. For each man as he enters, Abbas Effendi has a kindly greeting, a tactful remark, a personal inquiry, or sometimes a humorous sally, which brings a flittering smile to the grave faces — for with these pilgrims this is a solemn and impressive moment. Most of them have suffered for their faith, and many of them have traveled far for this meeting with the Master.

August 23, 1912

Day 135: Sarah J. Farmer: One of America’s Great Religious… 239 Days article
While Sarah J. Farmer continues to pay the price of being a visionary, she and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá take a walk together on Eliot’s…

Diary Entries: Green Acre, ME
Mahmud’s Diary: Leaving Green Acre while friends lined both sides of the road

News Clips
Boston Mass Post Persian to Plead for World Peace In a recent interview he said: “In this day every subject that is presented to a thoughtful audience must be done so with rational proofs corroborated with logical illustrations.”

The Mountain of God by E. S. (Ethel Stefana) Stevens
Sympathetic portrayal by a non-Baha’i of Abdu’l-Baha and the small band of Bahá’ís who lived in Haifa and ‘Akká early in 20th Century. Fiction. Published in World Order, Spring & Summer 1970, This issue of World Order offers its readers a special treat: excerpts from a novel… The Mountain of God, was published in London in 1911. A significant historical document. The author spent considerable time in Haifa and ‘Akka before 1911, met the small group of dedicated Baha’is resident there, among them the great calligrapher, Mishkin Qalam, and attained the presence of ‘Abdu’l-Baha. This unforgettable experience is recorded in the pages of The Mountain of God.

August 22, 1912

Day 134:The Battles of Sarah J. Farmer 239 Days article
Sarah J. Farmer faces stiff opposition from powerful men as she builds Green Acre during the 1890s.

Diary Entries: Green Acre, ME
Mahmud’s Diary: So many people eager to see ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
Mahmud’s Diary: A survivor of Titanic came to see the Master
Mahmud’s Diary: People appreciated new insights regarding harmony of science and religion
Mahmud’s Diary: Friends begged ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to receive a few words in His own handwriting
Mahmud’s Diary: Becoming extremely exhausted due to last day’s farewell visits

News Clips
Pittsburgh Pennsylvania Post The Bahá’í Movement By Charles Mason Remey.

Some History of Green Acre and Sarah J. Farmer
Sarah Jane Farmer (1844-1916) Founder of Green Acre Bahá’í School Sarah Farmer was named by Shoghi Effendi as one of the nineteen Disciples of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

The Rise and Fall of the Parliament of Religions at Greenacre by Robert P. Richardson – from a non-Bahá’í perspective, the process by which Greenacre became a purely Bahá’í facility. Richardson did not approve. He saw the conversion of Greenacre to a Bahá’í facility a failure to fulfill the ideal of the Parliament of Religions.

August 21, 1912

Day 133:“Within Greenacre’s Mystic Charm and Calm” 239 Days article
In 1899, Sarah Farmer describes the “Greenacre spirit” to a journalist from Lewiston, Maine, during a stroll among the grounds.

Diary Entries: Green Acre, ME
Mahmud’s Diary: “The person who is satisfied with himself is the manifestation of Satan …” Mrs. Tatum said, ‘I feel so dejected today. I am unhappy with myself.’ The Master replied:This is a sign of progress.
Mahmud’s Diary: To become “delivered from the shackles of superstition”
Mahmud’s Diary: The transformative effect of seeing ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
Mahmud’s Diary: A group of four hundred people sang in unison songs of praise to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

Baha’i Blogcast with Rainn Wilson – Ep 68: Kathryn Hogenson (author of ‘Lighting the Western Sky’ ) She tells how she became a Baha’i and about Ruhiyyih Khanum and her time at the Baha’i World Centre. Beginning about 23 minutes in she talks about the first Western Baha’i pilgrims to the Holy Land, and how Abdu’l-Baha showed special favor to them. Note: It would be the American Baha’is that took up the main responsibility for spreading the Faith to many countries around the world.

August 20, 1912

Day 132: August 20, 1912: Fred Mortensen Rides the Rails 239 Days article
A former convict meets ‘Abdu’l-Bahá at Green Acre, in what becomes a life-altering experience.

Diary Entries: Green Acre, ME
Mahmud’s Diary: The youth who travelled 1200 miles by riding the rails to meet the Master Each day the Master bestowed kindness upon him and a few days later He gave him money to pay for his journey home. Unknown to anyone, the Master paid for many such expenses. Twice He sent a speaker from New York to Chicago and adjacent cities and on each occasion, although the person was rich, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá gave him more than enough money to defray the expenses of his journey. In addition, He liberally contributed to the poor and to the churches [in which He spoke] in every city.
Mahmud’s Diary: Sarah Farmer was overjoyed by the Master’s visit
Mahmud’s Diary: People do not appreciate the value of the Manifestations of God while They are alive People were even standing in the street to listen to Him. He spoke so beautifully about the relationship of the East and the West that passersby stopped to hear what He had to say.
Mahmud’s Diary: “Up to now in the Cause of the Blessed Beauty a development as great as this has not occurred.”
Mahmud’s Diary: Photo of ‘Abdu’l-Baha at Green Acre The Master asked, ‘Do you have trust in me?

The story of Fred Mortensen by Justin Penoyer – Includes some history of the beginnings of the Baha’i Faith in America

August 19, 1912

Day 131: August 19, 1912: The Week Ahead 239 Days article
As ‘Abdu’l-Bahá settles in at Green Acre in Eliot, Maine, we take a look at the week ahead.

Diary Entries: Green Acre, ME
Mahmud’s Diary: “Put your trust in the Blessed Beauty.” Put your trust in the Blessed Beauty. Every momentous work that one undertakes has difficulties in the beginning. One should withstand such difficulties with the utmost steadfastness. We who wish to raise this magnificent edifice must be as brave as the soldiers who are intent on conquering strong fortresses.
Mahmud’s Diary: Visit to a Summer School for Girls
Mahmud’s Diary: Abdu’l-Bahá visited a residence known as the Bahá’í House
Mahmud’s Diary: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá encountered some fortune tellers
Mahmud’s Diary: “…to pray and weep before the Court of God …”
Agnus Parsons’ Diary: The road was decorated with more than a thousand lanterns

PUP: August 17, 1912 Talk at Green Acre Eliot, Maine The Axis Around Which Life Revolves is Love
PUP: August 17, 1912 Talk at Green Acre Eliot, Maine The Worlds of God are in Perfect Harmony and Correspondence

August 18, 1912

Day 130: Hand-in-Hand with the Indomitable Kate Carew 239 Days article
Our producer comments on what he has found most surprising about the journey so far.
What immediately came to mind was ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s engagement with the issue of race…perhaps impossible for any of us to truly understand the racial milieu of 1912, and to grasp how singular it was for a man from the Middle East to arrive on American shores and begin to enact change…On further reflection, I realize that I have been continually surprised at how modern — or even American — ‘Abdu’l-Bahá was…This unlikely convergence is perhaps best exemplified in his interview with Kate Carew.

Diary Entries: Green Acre, ME
Mahmud’s Diary: Abdu’l-Bahá preferred simple foods a visit to Charles Mason Remey’s home
Mahmud’s Diary: “… it would be well for you to give ear to our celestial songs.” Photo: Music sheet of “The New Jerusalem” by Louise (‘Shahnaz’) Waite dedicated to ‘Abdu’l-Baha
Mahmud’s Diary: The audience deeply moved by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s talk His melodious voice rang with majestic tones, moving the chairman of the conference to tears. As the Master was offering a prayer, one lady stood up and then fainted…[she said] It seemed to her that everyone in the audience was flying in heaven. Photo: Passport photo of Martha Root

PUP: Talk at Green Acre Eliot, Maine The Station of Man is Great, Very Great
PUP: Talk at Green Acre Eliot, Maine The Spirit Must Fortify Our Bodily Strength

August 19, 1912

Day 129: The Methods for Investigating Truth 239 Days article
To a packed house at Green Acre, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá speaks on the shortcomings of our ability distinguish the truth.
‘Abdu’l-Bahá set off for Portsmouth to visit Miss Farmer, who had been confined in a private sanatorium against her will for the past two years.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 17, 1912 Green Acre, ME ‘Abdu’l-Bahá encourages simplicity in furnishing one’s home a visit to Charles Mason Remey’s home
Mahmud’s Diary: August 17, 1912 Green Acre, ME “… God bestows healing.” When some begged ‘Abdu’l-Baha to heal them he said: Bahá’u’lláh is the Dawning Place of Holiness. Address your needs to Him.
Mahmud’s Diary: August 17, 1912 Green Acre, ME “Truth must be sought and laid bare. No one should endeavor to force upon people what he conceives.”
Mahmud’s Diary: August 17, 1912 Green Acre, ME “Food has nothing to do with faith.”

PUP: August 16, 1912 Talk at Green Acre Eliot, Maine August 16, 1912 Proofs are of Four Kinds first, through sense perception; second, through the reasoning faculty; third, from traditional or scriptural authority; fourth, through the medium of inspiration.

August 16, 1912

Day 128: Five Hundred Welcome ‘Abdu’l-Bahá at Green Acre, 239 Days article
‘Abdu’l-Bahá arrives at Green Acre in Eliot, Maine, one of “the greatest sources of religious innovation anywhere in the country.”

Diary Entries:
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 16, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá left Dublin, New Hampshire
Mahmud’s Diary: August 16, 1912 Green Acre, ME A crowd of more than 500 people welcomes ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to Green Acre

News Clips
Portland Oregon Telegram August 16, 1912 Chicago, IL
‘Abdu’l-Bahá Wonderful Persian Mystic, Expected To Be Here Next Month

Never have I been in the presence of so majestic, so sublime a personality. He radiates peace, Joy, majesty. Intuitively he answers the questions that come crowding to one’s mind, and no one leaves him unsatisfied or doubting. The effect is indescribable, and was experienced by hundreds who came out of curiosity and intending to scoff, but ‘remained to pray.’

August 15, 1912

Day 127: The Sun Sets on Dublin 239 Days article
After nearly three weeks in Dublin, New Hampshire, it is time for ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to say goodbye.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 15, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s last day in Dublin, NH
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 15, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá called on some acquaintances
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 15, 1912 Dublin, NH Pictures were taken of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá with His entourage and with children
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 15, 1912 Dublin, NH An example of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s healing power
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 15, 1912 Dublin, NH A delightful evening: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá told stories, peals of laughter by the friends, children clinging to Him from room to motor

News Clips
Portland Oregon Oregonian August 15, 1912
Some Time Ago

August 14, 1912

Day 126: The Religious Pulse of Modern America 239 Days article
American novelist Winston Churchill says that Americans in 1912 are seeking a new spiritual direction. “A house is not built by mere acquaintance with the plans,”

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 14, 1912 Dublin, NH Tablet revealed in America: “there is no complete solution for the economic question apart from that offered in the new teachings.” The following is a transcription of that Tablet…
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 14, 1912 Dublin, NH Degrees of sincerity and one’s ability to express it
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 14, 1912 Dublin, NH Persian dinner provided by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 14, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá attended an outdoor play
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 14, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá said kind words to household servants and shook hands

News Clips
The Portsmouth Herald August 14, 1912 Green Acre, Eliot‘Abdu’l-Bahá at Green Acre The great Persian teacher, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá (literally “Servant of God”) is to spend several days at Green Acre, Eliot, arriving on Friday afternoon, Aug. 16, about 4 o’clock, with his interpreters. The sight of these visitors from Persia and the Holy Land, in their flowing Eastern dress, will be a remarkable one among the Western Pines….In Paris and in London last year, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s discourses, remarkable for their directness and simplicity, drew large audience in religious and scientific circles. The same has been true in New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Washington and Chicago…

Finishing the Work: `Abdu’l-Bahá in Dublin, New Hampshire, 1912 by Phillip E. Tussing
From 25 July to 16 August 1912, the rural New Hampshire town of Dublin was host to `Abdu’l-Bahá `Abbas. The twenty-three days He spent in Dublin was longer than He spent anywhere in America except New York City. Dublin in 1912 was the site of many summer homes for wealthy and famous people, especially from New York and Washington, D.C. The most well-documented aspect of `Abdu’l-Bahá’s visit is, unsurprisingly, public meetings and visits with the rich and famous. After He gave a talk at the Unitarian Church in Dublin toward the end of His visit ‘Abdu’l-Baha said: The call of God has been raised here, and the work is finished. (A long article but interesting details not included in other postings.)

August 13, 1912

Day 125: Listening to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá at the Unitarian Church 239 Days article
Dublin’s motley inhabitants gather together to hear ‘Abdu’l-Bahá one last time.
Howard Colby Ives; His radiant smile and courteous demeanor… Never a dogmatic downward stroke of the hand; never an upraised warning finger; never the assumption of teacher to the taught. But always the encouraging upward swing of hands, as though He would actually lift us up with them. And His voice! Like a resonant bell of finest timbre; never loud but of such penetrating quality that the walls of the room seemed to vibrate with its music.”

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 13, 1912 Dublin, NH “… music or an ordinary pleasing voice … has an effect upon the spirit.”
Mahmud’s Diary: August 13, 1912 Dublin, NH “… behold what a desire I had to see you, that I traveled from the East to the West!”
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 13, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá entertained daily visitors and participated in activities

Abbas Effendi: His personality, work, and followers by *E. S. (Ethel Stefana) Stevens Overview of the Baha’i Faith, including a personal interview with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá published in **Fortnightly Review, Volume 95, pages 1067-1084 Chapman and Hall, 1911
She writes: Though I have practically lived in the house during a very busy time, I have never heard an impatient word or complaint…I have been doubly fortunate in seeing him almost daily, and in having continual long interviews with him. During these interviews, one characteristic, not, I think, particularly noticed by those who have written about him, had particularly struck me. That is, his keen sense of humour. (I found it curious how much time ‘Abdu’l-Baha gave to this person who wasn’t a Baha’i and let her experience the day to day happenings within the inner circle of the family. Stories and observations are told here that you won’t find anywhere else. )

* Ethel Stefana Drower was a British cultural anthropologist, orientalist and novelist who studied the Middle East and its cultures.
** The Fortnightly Review was one of the most prominent and influential magazines in nineteenth-century England.

August 12, 1912

Day 124: August 12, 1912: The Week Ahead 239 Days article
As ‘Abdu’l-Bahá winds down his stay in the scenic town of Dublin, New Hampshire, we take a look at the week ahead.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 12, 1912 Dublin, NH Having a picnic with the friends
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 12, 1912 Dublin, NH Examples of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s extreme approachability
Mahmud’s Diary: August 12, 1912 Dublin, NH The immortality of the spirit, economics and the new teachings were subjects of interest to seekers

African American Baha’is at the time of Jim Crow
One of the First Positive Black Characters in American Film (Major Alfred Christopher Goggins) CHRISTOPHER BUCK | OCT 12, 2018 PART 51 IN SERIES THE UNIVERSAL EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION

August 11, 1912

Day 123: On Cows and Materialist Philosophy 239 Days article
‘Abdu’l-Bahá disputes the premises of modern materialist philosophy.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 11, 1912 Dublin, NH Clarity, perception and vastness of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s knowledge manifested in His public talks
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 11, 1912 Dublin, NH Witnessing the power and majesty of the Center of the Covenant
Mahmud’s Diary: August 11, 1912 Dublin, NH Human factors obscuring the true meaning of the laws of God

News Clips
Portland Oregon Journal August 11, 1912 Bahá’í Assembly to Meet

Black & White Baha’is Working Together During the Jim Crow Era
Breaking Bread between Black & White in the Jim Crow Era (Doris McKay & George Henderson) CHRISTOPHER BUCK | JUN 15, 2015 PART 26 IN SERIES THE UNIVERSAL EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION at (See: July 22, 2021 entry below)

Day 122: Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey So Far: Month Four 239 Days article
Highlights from the fourth month of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s journey through America.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 10, 1912 Dublin, NH Gratitude is the cause of multiple blessings but the apex of gratitude is sacrifice
Mahmud’s Diary: August 10, 1912 Dublin, NH Responding to a comment that Bahá’ís appear to believe in the good teachings of all Prophets and religions
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 10, 1912 Dublin, NH Visiting with Parsons

African American Baha’is at the time of Jim Crow

Note: From the July 30th posting below there was an article that discovered that Major Alfred Goggins was listed on the 1928 Miami, Florida LSA election form.

Pittsburgh Courier News 09 April 1932 Talked With Presidents, Marched With Generals, Veteran Nears Trail’s End Fine Career: Major Alfred Goggins

August 9, 1912

Day 121: The Symbolic Language of the Bible 239 Days article
‘Abdu’l-Bahá argues against interpreting scripture literally.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 9, 1912 Dublin, NH “… evil is the non-existence of good.” Ignorance is evil and it is the non-existence of knowledge… absence of justice is oppression…
Mahmud’s Diary: August 9, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá joking with His entourage
Mahmud’s Diary: August 9, 1912 Dublin, NH We should be grateful to Bahá’u’lláh for having true and faithful friends
Mahmud’s Diary: August 9, 1912 Dublin, NH We should refrain from blind imitation the distinction of man lies in his ability to investigate reality and ascertain the truth

Older News Clip from 1911
The Washington Post December 31, 1911 The Coming of Abbas Effendi, Messiah of 6,000,000 Souls Describes a street scene in Akka with ‘Abdu’l-Baha giving alms to the poor.

August 8, 1912

Day 120: The Rights Not Only of Women, But of Men 239 Days article
A small incident in Dublin prompts ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to address the other side of the equal rights issue.

A condition must be realized in which the man and woman sacrifice their rights for each other, serve each other with heart and soul…Hearts must be attracted to the divine fragrances, so that each one prefers the other to himself.

Diary Entries:
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 8, 1912 Dublin, NH According to Teachings of Bahá’u’lláh men and women and equal rights ‘Abdu’l-Bahá said…
Mahmud’s Diary: August 8, 1912 Dublin, NH Man has no right to seek vengeance. The community, however, has responsibility for protection The more material education advances, the more competitive is the race in aggression and injustice. But spiritual education is the cause of competition in praiseworthy actions and the acquisition of human perfections. We hope that day by day these injustices will diminish and the spiritual virtues increase.
Mahmud’s Diary: August 8, 1912 Dublin, NH Human spirit is immortal but there are differences in stations
Mahmud’s Diary: August 8, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá was asked: What is the relationship between God and nature?

News Clips
Oakland Cal Enquirer August 8, 1912 Berkeley, CA Local Artist Wins Fame by Portrait her portraits of noted men, has achieved new laurels in New York through her completion of the head of ‘Abdul Bába, of the Bahá’í faith.

‘Abdu’l-Baha Promotes the Equality of Women and Men
Emmeline Pankhurst, Abdu’l-Baha, and the Suffragettes by David Langness JUL 31, 2021 at

August 7, 1912

Day 119: The Progressive Party Acclaims Theodore… 239 Days article
In Chicago, the National Progressive Party Convention welcomes its candidate amidst fanfare akin to a religious revival.

Diary Entries: Excerpts from a Talk by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Residence of Mr. and Mrs. Parsons
Mahmud’s Diary: August 7, 1912 Dublin, NH “… for existence there is no death … there is a transfer from one state to another.”
Mahmud’s Diary: Second, The “changes experienced by the body do not affect the soul.” For instance, the body is young but it grows old, while the soul remains unaffected; the body becomes weak but the soul does not; the body becomes diseased or paralyzed but the soul remains unchanged.
Mahmud’s Diary: Third & Fourth, The soul’s “existence is not dependent on the body.” [the soul] does not sleep when the body is asleep; rather, it has perception, it discovers, it flies and it travels.The body is in one single place but the soul is present in various places… Thus, the soul has a control and influence which the body has not. The body cannot see but the soul can see and has perception. Therefore, it follows that its existence is not dependent on the body.
Mahmud’s Diary: Fifth, The body is in “harmony with the spirit” and “under its influence” Briefly, there can be no effect without a cause, for as long as there is an effect there must be a cause. Therefore, though Christ appeared one thousand nine hundred and twelve years ago, His signs still exist today and His sovereignty and influence are manifest. Is it possible for that divine Spirit to be non-existent and these great signs still to be present? Therefore it is established that the Cause of these signs is He Who is the source of eternal light and everlasting bounties.
Mahmud’s Diary: Sixth, The “spirit of man possesses all forms and has manifold shapes simultaneously.” the spirit of man possesses all forms and has manifold shapes simultaneously. It has no need to change from one form to another. As it is beyond change and forms, it is non-material and eternal.
Mahmud’s Diary: Seventh Just like the power of mind, knowledge and other intellectual realities, the soul is “not subject to annihilation.”
Mahmud’s Diary: Ending Characteristics of a person who is endowed with perception He sees that all created beings are in harmony with the spirit and are under its influence…For he has spiritual susceptibilities and is affected by conscience and spiritual impulses. He is not limited by rational constraints or human emotions and sentiments.

Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 7, 1912 Dublin, NH A relaxing afternoon with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

News Clips
The New York Times July 2, 1911 New York, NY Bahaism Founded in Martyrdom, Taking Root Here Though This Persian Religion Was Established Only 70 Years Ago, Its Followers Have Suffered Persecutions Rivaling Those of the Early Christians — Now Numbers 10,000,000 Adherents.

August 6, 1912

Day 118: August 6, 1912: Socialism, Strikes, and Oscar Wilde 239 Days in America article
Late at night, Margaret Sanger and George De Forest Brush discuss Socialism, labor, and strikes: regular subjects for ‘Abdu’l-Baha.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 6, 1912 Dublin, NH “Whatever occurs is the cause of the elevation of the Word of God and the victory of the divine Cause …” …What hardship, grief or affliction could be greater than that which occurred at the time when the Blessed Beauty was exiled from Tihran?…Consider the case of Abraham. Had He not been exiled…
Mahmud’s Diary: August 6, 1912 Dublin, NH Harmful effects of disunity and discord

PUP: August 6, 1912 Talk at Home of Mr. and Mrs. Arthur J. Parsons, Dublin, New Hampshire The Foundations of All the Divine Prophets and Holy Books are One 88.4 Question: Does ‘Abdu’l-Bahá find Christianity is not lived up to and carried out in America? 88.5 So Christ said, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect,” meaning that perfection is the requirement of Christianity. Be the image and likeness of God. This is not easy. It necessitates the focalization of all heavenly virtues. It requires that we become recipients of all the perfections of God. 88.6 When Christ appeared with those marvelous breaths of the Holy Spirit, the children of Israel said, “We are quite independent of him; we can do without him and follow Moses; we have a book and in it are found the teachings of God; what need, therefore, have we of this man?” 88.7 Therefore, mere knowledge is not sufficient for complete human attainment. The teachings of the Holy Books need a heavenly power and divine potency to carry them out. 88.8 Briefly, the teachings of the Holy Books need a divine potency to complete their accomplishment in human hearts. Bahá’u’lláh not only proclaimed this unity and love; He established it…it is evident that the confirmation of the Holy Spirit and impelling influence of a heavenly power are needed to accomplish the divine purpose in human hearts and conditions. 88.10 It is, therefore, evident and proved that an effort must be put forward to complete the purpose and plan of the teachings of God in order that in this great Day of days the world may be reformed, souls resuscitated, a new spirit of life found, hearts become illumined, mankind rescued from the bondage of nature, saved from the baseness of materialism and attain spirituality and radiance in attraction toward the divine Kingdom. This is necessary; this is needful. Mere reading of the Holy Books and texts will not suffice. We need an army to attain victory in the spiritual world; mere plans are not sufficient; ideas and principles are helpless without a divine power to put them into effect. 88.12 there is need of the stimulus of the joy of glad tidings in human hearts. Certain spiritual attraction is requisite in order that hearts may willingly take the step forward in the divine Cause. We must become attracted to God. The breaths of the Holy Spirit must take effect. Unless this is so, it is impossible for the teachings of God to accomplish in us. An ideal power is necessary. [story of Qurratu’l-Ayn] She was like a lioness. Her action caused a great turmoil throughout the land of Persia. So excessive and compulsory is the requirement for veiling in the East that the people in the West have no idea of the excitement and indignation produced by the appearance of an unveiled woman. Qurratu’l-Ayn lost all thought of herself and was unconscious of fear in her attraction to God.

August 5, 1912

Day 117: August 5, 1912: The Week Ahead 239 Days in America article
As ‘Abdu’l-Bahá continues his stay in the scenic environs of Dublin, New Hampshire, we take a look at the week ahead.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 5, 1912 Dublin, NH Becoming “captives of the love of God and of service to the Cause of the oneness of humanity”
Mahmud’s Diary: August 5, 1912 Dublin, NH Inability to sense a thing, such as the spiritual world, is not a proof of its nonexistence
Mahmud’s Diary: August 5, 1912 Dublin, NH Green and verdant surroundings inspire praises for God

PUP: August 5, 1912 Talk at Dublin Inn in New Hampshire When We Perceive Reality these Texts Become Perfectly Reconcilable

African American Baha’is at the time of Jim Crow:
The Ride: Black and White Unity in the Jim Crow South (more on Louis Gregory and Willard McKay’s journey through the South) JANET RUHE-SCHOEN | OCT 23, 2020 PART 1 IN SERIES THE WISDOM OF LOUIS GREGORY at

August 4, 1912

Day 116: The Challenges of Finding ‘Abdu’l-Bahá 239 Days in America article
We share some observations about our approach to discovering and portraying ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

Diary Entries:
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 4, 1912 Dublin, NH Conversation with some colored people at Parsons’ boat house
Mahmud’s Diary: August 4, 1912 Dublin, NH Each action and word of the Manifestation of God have many meanings – they have no equal In the afternoon He spoke in Mr. and Mrs. Parsons’s drawing room about the power of the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh and the assistance and confirmations of the Greatest Name.
Mahmud’s Diary: August 4, 1912 Dublin, NH Everyone “must hear the Voice of the Lord in whatever way possible or by whatever means”

News Clips
The Washington Herald August 4, 1912 ‘Abdu’l-Bahá — a Sign of the Times

African American Baha’is at the time of Jim Crow:
The Original Freedom Ride, 1931: Louis Gregory and Willard McKay JANET RUHE-SCHOEN | OCT 11, 2020 PART 4 IN SERIES THE WISDOM OF LOUIS GREGORY FIGHTER FOR RACIAL JUSTICE at

August 3, 1912

Day 115: “Get the Races to Intermarry” 239 Days in America article
While speaking to African American servants on the shores of Dublin Lake, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá makes a surprising announcement.

Diary Entries:
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 3, 1912 Dublin, NH “There is nothing more delightful than the emotion one feels in embracing a sweet child …” …it makes one’s very ribs dilate.”
Mahmud’s Diary: August 3, 1912 Dublin, NH Secondary laws of religions change in every age
Mahmud’s Diary: August 3, 1912 Dublin, NH The effectiveness of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s Talks The explanations must be adapted to the capacity of the hearers and suited to the exigency of the time. Beauty of style, moderation in delivery and suitability of words and meanings are necessary. It is not only a matter of uttering words.

News Clips
Denver Colorado Post August 3, 1912 ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Abbas the Persian Prophet ‘Abdul-Bahá Abbas, the Persian prophet, says men and women will eventually be even as they were in the Garden of Eden. If ‘Abdul-Bahá has any followers in this country this declaration ought to get lots of votes for the women.

African American Baha’is at the time of ‘Abdu’l-Baha:

Above All Barriers A Moving Tribute of Louis Gregory by Elsie Austin, an African-American attorney from Cincinnati, Ohio

August 2, 1912

Day 114: Being Black in the Progressive Era 239 Days in America article
In 1910 an African American lawyer boards a ship to Egypt to meet ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, and reflects on what it means to be an American.

Diary Entries:
Mahmud’s Diary: August 2, 1912 Dublin, NH Need for unity and amity between blacks and whites – announcing upcoming interracial marriage
Mahmud’s Diary: August 2, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá presented clear and persuasive proofs about Muhammad, the Prophet of God

Abdu’l-Baha’s Radical Approach to Race Unity JONATHAN MENON | JUN 15, 2020 at

August 1, 1912

Day 113: Out and About in Dublin 239 Days in America article
‘Abdu’l-Bahá settles into summer life at the resort village of Dublin, New Hampshire.

Diary Entries:
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 1, 1912 Dublin, NH Visiting a nearby boys’ Summer-School camp See Photo of ‘Abdu’l-Baha with boys at the camp.
Agnes Parsons’ Diary: August 1, 1912 Dublin, NH ‘Abdu’l-Bahá wrote a Tablet for Agnes Parsons’ son, Jeffrey, at her request
Mahmud’s Diary: August 1, 1912 Dublin, NH Points to keep in mind when undertaking charitable works
Mahmud’s Diary: August 1, 1912 Dublin, NH Transformative effects of Bahá’u’lláh’s Teachings – two examples

Tablet of Baha’u’llah extolling the station of ‘Abdu’l-Baha is put to music
‘Abdu’l-Baha visits Beirut It was on this occasion of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s visit to Beirut that Bahá’u’lláh revealed the Lawh-i-Ard-i-Bá (Tablet of the Land of Bá, Beirut). Here is the full text of this glorious Tablet extolling the station of the Master, the Centre of the Covenant of Bahá’u’lláh. Source: The Revelation of Bahá’u’lláh, Volume 4, Chapter 17

Song by Luke Slott Tablet to the Land of Bá (Tribute to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá) Home of Light, a new album in honour of the Centenary of the Passing of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, is being released one song at a time from August through November.