.."To be a Baha'i simply means to love all the world; to love humanity and try to serve it; to work for universal peace and universal brotherhood." ('Abdul-Baha) In one of his talks in London, he said that someone could be a Baha'i even if he had never heard the name of Baha'u'llah: "The man who lives the life according to the teachings of Baha'u'llah is already a Baha'i. On the other hand, a man may call himself a Baha'i for fifty years, and if he does not live the life he is not a Baha'i.." These words show briefly but clearly what the decisive factors are: our life and our actions. In the sacred writings of the Baha'i Faith no idea recurs as often as this one: man must bring forth fruits; he must not waste these days which will never return. Here are a few quotations on this subject: "The essence of faith", Baha'u'llah writes, "is fewness of words and abundance of deeds; he whose words exceed his deeds, know verily his death is better than his life." (Bwf 140) "The companions of God are, in this day, the lump that must leaven the peoples of the world. They must show forth such trustworthiness, such truthfulness and perseverance, such deeds and character that all mankind may profit by their example." (Adj 19) "O army of God!" writes 'Abdul-Baha, "...should any one of you enter a city, he should become a centre of attraction by reason of his sincerity, his faithfulness and love, his honesty and fidelity, his truthfulness and loving-kindness towards all the peoples of the world, so that the people of that city may cry out and say: 'This man is unquestionably a Baha'i, for his manners, his behaviour, his conduct, his morals, his nature, and disposition reflect the attributes of the Baha'is.'"(Adj 21). (39:2)
An oft-recurring exhortation of Baha'u'llah is: "Beware, O people of Baha, lest ye walk in the ways of them whose words differ from their deeds... Let your acts be a guide unto all mankind, for the profession of most men, be they high or low, differ from their conduct. It is through your deeds that ye can distinguish yourselves from others." (Dal 77) And 'Abdul-Baha shows us why the world is in such a sad plight: "What profit is there in agreeing that universal friendship is good, and talking of the solidarity of the human race as a grand ideal? Unless these thoughts are translated into the world of action, they are useless. The wrong in the world continues to exist just because people talk only of their ideals, and do not strive to put them into practice. If actions took the place of words, the world's misery would very soon be changed into comfort." (Pt 16). (40:1)
On no point is the Baha'i Faith more categorical than in asking the believer to refrain from fault-finding and backbiting: "O Son of Man! Breathe not the sins of others so long as thou art thyself a sinner. Shouldst thou transgress this command, accursed wouldst thou be, and to this I bear witness." (Hwd Arabic 27) The self-righteous-- according to Confucius, the "worst robbers of virtue"-- are exhorted by Baha'u'llah: "O Son of Being! How couldst thou forget thine own faults an busy thyself with the faults of others? Whoso doeth this is accursed of Me." (ibid 26)... "If the fire of self overcome you, remember your own faults and not the faults of My creatures, inasmuch as every one of you knoweth his own self better than he knoweth others." (ibid Persian 66). The true believer "should forgive the sinful, and never despise his low estate, for none knoweth what his own end shall be." (Iqan 194).