TRAITS of a Seeker? - G P Pamphlets
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What Are the Traits of a True Seeker? (1:1)

Everything revolves around this question: How ready and receptive is your heart to new knowledge, beliefs, and attitudes? Is your heart thirsty for truth? Baha'u'llah teaches that if someone is not thirsty for living waters, he should not be offered a cup: (1:2)

O SON OF DUST! The wise are they that speak not unless they obtain a hearing, even as the cup-bearer, who proffereth not his cup till he findeth a seeker, and the lover who crieth not out from the depths of his heart until he gazeth upon the beauty of his beloved. Wherefore sow the seeds of wisdom and knowledge in the pure soil of the heart, and keep them hidden, till the hyacinths of divine wisdom spring from the heart and not from mire and clay.1 (1:3)

Christ used a beautiful parable to show the great variety of hearts people have. First, He spoke about the fulfillment of Isaiah's prophecy concerning those who would deny their Messiah: (1:4)

Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand. In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: 'You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this people's heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.' Matthew 13:13-15 (1:5)

Then He referred to a few disciples who were exceptions: (1:6)

But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. Matthew 13:16 (1:7)

After complimenting His dear disciples, Jesus revealed the parable of the sower: (1:8)

Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is the seed sown along the path. The one who received the seed that fell on rocky places is the man who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. But since he has no root, he lasts only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, he quickly falls away. The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful. But the one who received the seed that fell on good soil is the man who hears the word and understands it. He produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. Matthew 13:18-23 (1:9)

The Bab compares a person without spiritual capacity to a stone, and the one with capacity to a mirror. (1:10)

The One true God may be compared unto the sun and the believer unto a mirror. No sooner is the mirror placed before the sun than it reflects its light. The unbeliever may be likened unto a stone. No matter how long it is exposed to the sunshine, it cannot reflect the sun.2 (1:11)

'Abdu'l-Baha presents a similar analogy to portray the same principle: (1:12)

Behold how the sun shines upon all creation, but only surfaces that are pure and polished can reflect its glory and light...Green and living trees can absorb the bounty of the sun; dead roots and withered branches are destroyed by it. Therefore, man must seek capacity and develop readiness.3 (1:13)

Baha'u'llah begins His Book of Certitude, which pertains to the proofs of His divine Mission, with these verses: (1:14)

No man shall attain the shores of the ocean of true understanding except he be detached from all that is in heaven and on earth. Sanctify your souls, O ye peoples of the world, that haply ye may attain that station which God hath destined for you...4 (1:15)

In this statement, Baha'u'llah considers two conditions essential for finding the truth:

Sanctity (1:16)

What is detachment? Life on earth can be compared to a plane ride, and God to the solid ground that supports and sustains our souls. Our goal is to jump out of the plane, which is our ego, and away from the clouds, which are the illusions that surround us. (1:17)

Detachment means separating yourself temporarily from whatever you have learned. It means starting your spiritual journey with no preconceived notions. It means stepping out of your plane with no strings attached, simply for the sake of beholding wonders you have never seen before. Of course, when you jump, you carry a parachute, which at the right moment opens to protect you and to allow you to descend gracefully and confidently. The parachute is the potential-- the pure mind and the pure heart-- that God placed in your soul to protect you from self-destruction. If you trust Him and put everything in His hand, he will open your parachute at the right moment. He will help you open your mind and soul to the splendors of His light. What will happen if you jump with a cord attached to you and to the plane? You will dangle dangerously. (1:18)

Thus, to find the truth, you must put everything aside-- everything you have learned from your parents, your pastor, your priest, or any other 'authority figure.' If you begin your journey with any strings attached, you will be dragged, dangling, behind the plane. (1:19)

The second condition Baha'u'llah considers essential for finding the truth is sanctity. Attachment originates mostly in the emotions, especially the fear of losing something precious; sanctity pertains mostly to the purity of the soul. (1:20)

Think of your soul as a sheet of paper. Can anyone write a clear message on a cluttered page? The more cluttered the page, the harder it is to write. God is always looking for a blank space on our soul to write special messages, such as hope and happiness. He constantly declares that He loves us. That is why He made us. He created the universe for our sake and provided for us every heavenly gift imaginable. He sent His most glorious creations, His Messengers of hope and peace, and allowed them to suffer for our sake. He gave us every potential, every celestial gift from His heavenly treasures. He did not withhold anything from us. We manifest His beauty and grandeur. What more can we expect? Our only duty in return for all these blessings is to leave a little blank space for Him, so that He can keep writing His special messages of love for us. (1:21)

What will happen if our souls are cluttered with worldliness? How can God find space to write? What will happen if our souls are cluttered with self-satisfaction, greed, selfishness, pride, pretension, self-deception, prejudice, and plausible excuses? What will happen if a person writes messages like these: (1:22)

O God, I love you, but I am really too busy! (A common and seemingly innocent excuse for putting one's immediate self-interest above one's duty to God.) (1:23)

O God, I love you, but investigating the news of the Advent of the One you have promised is not my job. There are thousands of other people who know the Scripture better than I do. I depend on them. If there is any 'good news,' they will tell me. (Another unacceptable excuse.) (1:24)


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