12th Day of Ridvan
- Category: Alison Marshall's Column
- Created: Monday, 01 May 2006 15:32
- Published: Monday, 01 May 2006 15:32
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Here we are on the last day of Ridvan. On this day back in 1863, Baha'u'llah and his family and friends left the Garden of Ridvan for their long trek to the Ottoman capital of Istanbul (Constantinople).
One of the tablets Baha'u'llah wrote at this time was Nightingale of Separation. It is a lament at Baha'u'llah's parting and separation from the believers in Baghdad. Only a selected few could travel with him; the rest were instructed to stay in Baghdad or go elsewhere to teach the Faith.
The tablet begins with a poem of lament, which I've quoted below.
The bird of loyalty sings upon the tree of eternity
with the strains of this parting, you who are filled with yearning;
As does the dove of the two seas upon the twigs of the lote-tree of separation--
that the departure is imminent, you who are filled with yearning.
Say: the time of union has been fulfilled, and by virtue of the decree
that of absence has begun through this parting, you who are filled with yearning;
Tears have flowed from the eyes of the immortals in the concourse
on high because of this farewell, you who are filled with yearning;
The breezes of joy that blew from the paradise of splendor
have been stilled by this departure, you who are filled with yearning.
By God, the faces of the celestial maidens in their chambers
have paled at the prospect of this absence, you who are filled with yearning;
The houris rouge their cheeks blood red, for they have heard
about this leave-taking, you who are filled with yearning;
And will never adorn their bodies with the silks of eternity
after learning of this departure, you who are filled with yearning:
No sorrow shall ever compare to this grief in the realm of the unknowable essence,
for the wind of separation is blowing, you who are filled with yearning!
Baha'u'llah: Nightingale of Separation
Original blog entry...