With the same conviction as that with which they have proclaimed the unity of mankind and the changing of our conditions on earth, so do Baha'is know that this world is only transitory, a preparation for the next world. 'Abdul-Baha draws the analogy with one's life before birth: "In the beginning of his human life man was embryonic in the world of the matrix. There he received capacity and endowment for the reality of human existence. The forces and powers necessary for the world were bestowed upon him in that limited condition. In this world he needed eyes: he received them potentially in the other. He needed ears; he obtained them there in readiness and preparation for his new existence. The powers requisite in this world were conferred upon him in the world of the matrix, so that when he entered this realm of real existence he not only possessed all necessary functions and powers but found provision for his material sustenance awaiting him. (36:3)
"Therefore in this world he must prepare himself for the life beyond. That which he needs in the world of the kingdom must be obtained here. Just as he prepared himself in the world of the matrix by acquiring forces necessary in this sphere of existence, so likewise the indispensable forces of the divine existence must be potentially attained in this world. (37:1)
"What is he in need of in the kingdom which transcends the life and limitation of this mortal sphere? That world beyond is a world of sanctity and radiance; therefore it is necessary that in this world he should acquire these divine attributes. In that world there is need of spirituality, faith, assurance, the knowledge and love of God. These he must attain in this world so that after his ascension from the earthly to the heavenly kingdom he shall find all that is needful in that life eternal ready for him..." (Pup 220) (37:2)
It is therefore evident that the way one lives is not at all a matter of indifference. As all sacred writings testify, one is answerable for one's acts: "Bring thyself to account each day ere thou art summoned to a reckoning; for death, unheralded, shall come upon thee and thou shalt be called to give account for thy deeds." (Hwd Arabic 31).