Names (Asmá)

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Victoria, Canada

Dean Kalyan ©

Leaf
We gave each of our children a heavy meaningful Arabic or Hebrew first name and a hippy nature (also meaningful) middle name.
“O MY handmaiden, O My leaf! Render thou thanks unto the Best-Beloved of the world for having attained this boundless grace at a time when the world’s learned and most distinguished men have remained deprived thereof. We have designated thee ‘a leaf’ that thou mayest, like unto leaves, be stirred by the gentle wind of the Will of God — exalted be His glory — even as the leaves of the trees are stirred by onrushing winds. Yield thou thanks unto thy Lord by virtue of this brilliant utterance. Wert thou to perceive the sweetness of the title ‘O My handmaiden’ thou wouldst find thyself detached from all mankind, devoutly engaged day and night in communion with Him Who is the sole Desire of the world.” –Bahá’u’lláh, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh

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Davison, USA

Sholeh Samadani Loehle ©

The field at Louhelen Baha’i School in Davison, Michigan was bathed in light every evening, for 5 peaceful days.

“If thou art sailing upon the sea of God’s Names, which are reflected in all things, know thou that He is exalted and sanctified from being known through His creatures, or being described by His servants. Everything thou beholdest hath been called into being through the operation of His Will. How can such a created thing, therefore, be indicative of His essential oneness? God’s existence in itself testifieth to His Own oneness, while every created thing, by its very nature, beareth evidence that it hath been fashioned by God. Such is the proof of consummate wisdom in the estimation of those who sail the ocean of divine Truth.” -The Báb, Selections From the Writings of the Báb

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Mount Barker, Australia

Chad Mauger ©

Flame, fire, heat; defence against the bitter cold.

“Walk thou amongst men in the name of God, and by the power of His might, that thou mayest show forth His signs amidst the peoples of the earth. Burn thou brightly with the flame of this undying Fire which the All-Merciful hath ignited in the midmost heart of creation, that through thee the heat of His love may be kindled within the hearts of His favoured ones.” -Bahá’u’lláh, The Summons of the Lord of Hosts

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St. Peter, USA

Lindsey Lugsch-Tehle ©

“He hath most excellent names in the hearts of those who know.” –Bahá’u’lláh

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Beijing, China

Kat Eghdamian ©

I snapped this shot while visiting the Forbidden City in China. It is interesting to reflect on the power of the ‘Kingdom of Names’ in this world – how it can lead masses of people to follow other individuals who claim earthly power and authority. Visiting the Forbidden City was a symbol of these attachments to me. It is important to remind ourselves of these attachments and to strive to reflect the names and attributes of God with detachment (what a standard!).

“Every created thing manifests the names and attributes of God. In the spiritual world, these attributes are manifest with such intensity that man will never be able to comprehend them in this life. In the human world, however, these attributes appear within the ‘Kingdom of Names’ and man often becomes attached to these names.” –Bahá’u’lláh

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Bahji, Israel

Paul Aziz Netherwood ©

“O QURRATU’L-‘AYN! We have, verily, dilated Thine heart in this Revelation, which stands truly unique from all created things, and have exalted Thy name through the manifestation of the Báb…” -The Báb, Selections from the Writings of the Báb