Messages to the Indian Subcontinent (part 1)

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This etext is based on:

"Messages of Shoghi Effendi to the Indian Subcontinent 1923-1957"

Compiled and Edited by Írán Fúrútan Muhájir

 

Bahá'í Publishing Trust P.O. Box 19, New Delhi 110001, India

Copyright (c) National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of India

 

First Edition: 1970

Revised and Enlarged Edition: 1995

ISBN: 85 85091 87 0

Availability of this etext in no way modifies the copyright status of the above publication.

This etext is freely available through anonymous internet file-sharing.

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ACKNOWLEDGMENT

More than twenty years ago a compilation entitled Dawn of anew Day was published by the Baha'i Publishing Trust of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of India, which contained some 200 letters and 70 cablegrams of Shoghi Effendi, to India and Burma.

Although all his letters were not available at the time, it was felt that extracts from the ones at hand would be of great interest to the Baha'i World. That edition quickly sold out. Gradually more of his letters were collected by the Archives Department of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of India, to be published in an expanded edition. We rejoice in presenting available letters and cables of our beloved Guardian, his precious legacy, to the ever-expanding Baha'i community of the Indian subcontinent in this volume.

We would like to express our sincere and grateful appreciation to Mrs. Muhajir, for her loving efforts in compiling and editing the "Dawn of a New Day" in 1970 in India and "Messages of Shoghi Effendi to the Indian Subcontinent", in 1994, at the Baha'i World Centre.

We are grateful for the assistance of the Archives Office at the World Centre for providing many additional letters and cables, specially those addressed to Burma. We express our thanks to Mrs. Behnaz Bahrami Furughi and Mrs. Tahirih Tahririha Danesh for research and proofreading. We are particularly indebted to Mr. Arman Danesh for executing the artistic and technical aspects in the publication of this collection.

National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of India

November 4, 1994

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PREFACE

The sub-continent of India, favoured by special mention in the Qayyumu'l-Asma', on the Day of the Declaration of the Bab, is a land of the greatest spiritual potentialities. During the lifetime of 'Abdu'l-Baha a steady stream of teachers from the East and West arrived to establish the Faith, and at the time of His passing, there was a sizeable community of Baha'is in India. This was the community that grew into spiritual maturity, expanded and developed under the unerring guidance of our beloved Guardian who fostered its growth, ever beckoning it forward.

The Guardian summoned the believers to achieve great victories. Local movements and limited projects would not be commensurate with the greatness of the Revelation of Baha'u'llah; he led them to self-sacrifice, to big undertakings, and to bold ventures. Gradually, he brought to light the vastness of the realm of service, pointing out the many races and tribes that inhabited this land of ancient civilization and cradle of important world religions. He gave instructions and plans to this Community on how to plan and organize a comprehensive teaching plan.

As far back as 1933, the beloved Guardian summoned the Baha'is of India to teach among the masses, and to reach persons of capacity in every strata of society. He guided us in every accomplishment, <p9> pointing out the objectives, counselling and urging the completion of goals set for the Community.

The reader will find for himself what great victories still remain to be won and what great potentialities still remain hidden in India "a vast country and an excellent field of service". This book is for those, anywhere in the world, who wish to raise individually and collectively to establish the world Order of Baha'u'llah and the Kingdom of God on earth.

Dr. R. Muhajir

New Delhi

9 March 1970

 

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FOREWORD

The history of the Faith in the Indian sub-continent started when Shaykh Sa'id Hindi, travelled to Iran to seek the light of the Promised Qa'im, and attained the bounty of becoming one of the Letters of the Living. During this time at least three other individuals in India independently recognized the Bab as the Promised One of all ages.

Some years later Baha'u'llah instructed a well-known Persian Baha'i scholar, Jamal Effendi, to visit India and Burma and to teach the new Faith to dignitaries and people of learning. Jamal Effendi arrived in Bombay in 1872 and was instrumental in attracting a large number of prominent people to the Faith, some of whom received Tablets from Baha'u'llah and were praised by Him. Among them was Siyyid Mustafa Rumi, the recipient of many tablets from Baha'u'llah, 'Abdu'l-Baha, and Shoghi Effendi. He was posthumously appointed a hand of the Cause of God by the Guardian of the Baha'i Faith.

During the Ministry of 'Abdu'l-Baha, under his watchful guidance, the newly-born communities grew and strengthened. He showered his love and bounties upon them through more than 700 tablets.

The Local Spiritual Assembly of Bombay, the first to be formed in India, acted as the coordinating centre for Baha'i activities throughout that land. In Burma, the Local Spiritual Assembly of Mandalay, <pxi> under the guidance at Siyyid Mustafa, served as the mother Assembly of that region.

With the passing of 'Abdu'l-Baha, the guidance that flowed from the pen of Shoghi Effendi, for thirty six years, united the separate elements existing in that community into one coherent, spiritually dynamic and organically expanding force and brought the fledgling community of the Baha'is of India and Burma under the banner of the worldwide Faith of Baha'u'llah.

Through Shoghi Effendi's copious letters to India and Burma, we can glean his loving vision for the future of the masses in that vast region. To India he wrote in one of his earliest letters: "India, whether by virtue of its size and the ancient history of its civilization, or diversity of its beliefs, religions and races, and the receptivity of its inhabitants, is a ripe and vast field for the diffusion of the word of God and the hoisting of the banner of His Religion. Particularly, it was, in the latter years of the Centre of the Covenant, the recipient of His special favours and derived joy and hope from His divine promises." [1] To Burma he said, "How sweet and glorious to remember in these days of strife and turmoil how the mighty hand of our beloved 'Abdu'l-Baha has gathered together peoples of divers tongues and distant climes and united their hearts in one common spirit of love and servitude to the sacred Threshold of Baha'u'llah." This sense of love and encouragement persisted throughout his ministry.

Patiently and painstakingly, Shoghi Effendi established the framework of the Baha'i Administration in India and Burma. He guided the newly-established National Spiritual Assembly to translate Baha'i literature into several Indian and Burmese languages, assisted financially for their publication, instructed them to purchase Baha'i Centres and establish Baha'i Summer Schools, advised them to purchase the National Haziratu'l-Quds and the Temple Land, contributed for the publication of Baha'i magazines and periodicals, guided them in all details of hosting national and intercontinental conferences, defined the means and paths of community development encouraged and praised them for the successful completion of the Plans they had devised, which led to the active participation of the Baha'is of India in the world-embracing Ten Year Crusade. Throughout the years he emphasized the importance of spreading the Message <pxii> of Baha'u'llah to the masses of the Indian Subcontinent and urged the friends to "forget their former and traditional prejudices whether religious, racial or social, and commune together on a common basis of equality, love and devotion to the Cause." His heartfelt desire for the masses of India to respond to the Divine Message of Baha'u'llah was realized, shortly after his ascension to the Abha Kingdom.

This massive expansion continues under the infallible guidance of the Universal House of Justice. Baha'is of India, who now number more than two million, will surely ponder the words of the beloved Guardian, in his letter of January 9th, 1923, to fulfil his wish to surpass all past records:

"True, that land seems now unhappily to be plunged in the darkness of prejudice, hate and mistrust, yet however dark the immediate prospect may appear, our confidence remains unshaken that ere long these mists shall clear away, the dawn of a New Day shall break upon that land and Rays of Divine Revelation shall make of India a spiritually-quickened, peaceful and united country."

National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of India

April 1995

 

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[Table of Contents omitted]

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The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful throughout India and Burma, Care of the members of the Spiritual Assembly.

January 9, 1923

Beloved co-workers in the Vineyard of God!

It has been my great pleasure and privilege to send you, since my return to the Holy Land, first my general message of confidence and of love addressed to all believers throughout the East, and later another letter wherein I appeal in particular to those faithful lovers of His Cause in that vast and distant dominion to labour wholeheartedly and to the very end for the diffusion of His Light and the spread of His Cause. Remembering, however, the few among my friends in that land who are as yet unfamiliar with the Persian Tongue, I have thought of sending these few lines to them in particular and through them to the rest of my brethren and sisters in those regions who, despite the diversity of tongue, of race and custom are all united at heart and animated by one common desire to uplift humanity and carry out His Divine Purpose for this world.

What an alluring field of service India with all its possibilities unfolds to our eyes at the present time and how vast are the opportunities <p2> of sowing the seeds of unity and loving kindness in the hearts of its divers peoples!

True, that land seems now unhappily to be plunged in the darkness of prejudice, hate and mistrust, yet however dark the immediate prospect may appear, our confidence remains unshaken that ere long these mists shall clear away, the dawn of a New Day shall break upon that land and the Rays of this Divine Revelation shall make of India a spiritually-quickened, peaceful and united country.

The universal Teachings of Baha'u'llah if declared and propounded with wisdom and judgement, determination, selflessness and sincerity, and above all if exemplified in our lives and dealings with our fellow men, cannot fail to inspire and stimulate the mind of the enlightened seeker and win the admiration and allegiance of all mankind.

Ours then is the duty and privilege to bring to the attention of this distressed and war weary world this Message of Eternal Salvation and help to establish the Era of Peace and Brotherhood as purposed and foretold by Baha'u'llah.

The welcome news of the progress of the Third All India Baha'i Convention as well as the favourable comment made upon it by the Press of that country have been fully shared with the pilgrims and resident friends in the Holy Land and we have all admired and rejoiced at the efforts you are exerting for the consolidation of the Movement in that ancient land.

May your endeavours in every sphere of your spiritual activities be crowned with brilliant success, that His glorious Promise regarding the future of that land may be speedily fulfilled. It is my earnest hope that " The Baha'i News", the representative organ of the Baha'i Community in India, may expand and develop, may widen the sphere of its correspondence, add to the number and quality of its articles in Persian as well as in English, report regularly in its columns the news of the spiritual activities of all Baha'i centres in India and elsewhere, and in general provide for the full, correct and dignified presentation of the Cause to the general public.

Assuring every one of you of my constant prayers on your behalf and wishing you success in your noble task, I am your brother and co-worker,

Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine

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The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful throughout <p3> Burma. Care of Aga Seyed Mustapha, Mandalay, Burma.

February 5, 1923

Dearly beloved brethren and sisters in 'Abdu'l-Baha: How sweet and glorious to remember in these days of strife and turmoil how the mighty hand of our beloved 'Abdu'l-Baha has gathered together peoples of divers tongues and distant climes and united their hearts in one common spirit of love and servitude to the sacred Threshold of Baha'u'llah. The Spirit that has achieved so great a measure of reconciliation, is today the one Factor that can, amid the unceasing contentions of races, nations, creeds and classes, assure to this disillusioned world the reign of true felicity and peace.

How great is then our privilege to labour for the diffusion of this Spirit, and how vital and urgent our task to relieve mankind from its present state of uncertainty and peril!

True, the work to be achieved is immeasurably difficult, the obstacles to be surmounted innumerable but our reliance is in His all conquering Spirit which has effected such a change in the past, and is sure, according to his explicit promise, to effect a still greater change in future.

I would be most pleased and gratified to receive a detailed report of your spiritual activities, and a full description of the present position of the Cause in those regions and of the plans you contemplate for its progress in future. I assure you that your welfare and happiness are the objects of my deepest care and concern, and I wish you to rely on my readiness to be of any service to you in your labours for the Cause.

I shall look forward from now on to the joyful tidings which my spiritual brethren and sisters in Burma, assisted by the efforts of our devoted and able Baha'i sister, Mrs. Stannard, will send me in the near future.

It is my earnest prayer, whenever I visit the Three Sacred Shrines, that the blessings of the Almighty may rest upon your efforts and make of that far away region a radiant centre of spiritual activity and humanitarian achievements.

Your brother and co-worker,

Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine

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April 26,1923

My Dear Spiritual Brother:

Shoghi Effendi was most pleased to receive your letter dated April 13th. He was specially delighted to hear of the great zeal Dr Koshal is displaying in the spread of the movement. As you mentioned India is a vast country and an excellent field of service. If the younger Baha'i generation, in whom Shoghi Effendi has great hopes, take the pain of studying the Cause deeply and thoroughly, read its history, find its underlying principles and become both well informed and energetic, they surely can achieve a great deal. It is upon their shoulders that the Master has laid the tremendous work of teaching.

They are the ones to raise the call of the Kingdom and arouse the people from slumber. If they fail the Cause is doomed to stagnation. May we all hope and earnestly pray that through God's infinite Grace, through the Master's spiritual guidance and through Shoghi Effendi's tender care we may do justice to this tremendous work and not fail to do the Master's bidding.

As Shoghi Effendi has not yet taken up the tremendous work and responsibility of attending to the correspondence of the individual friends, he asked me to write you this note, acknowledge the receipt of your letter, and ask you to do the following things: Change the name of your Executive Committee to the "National Spiritual Assembly", because the corresponding Assembly in England and America bear the same name, and uniformity in such matters is most advisable. 2 He likes to receive regular and detailed reports of the position of the Cause as well as the activities of the friends in India drafted as well as sent by the Secretary of the National Spiritual Assembly, so as to be informed of the conditions there and administer to your needs. 3 He wishes to have the postal as well as telegraphic address of the Secretary so as to send his communications to him.

Shoghi Effendi earnestly hopes and prays that the National Spiritual Assembly will be able to achieve a great deal and herald a new era of spiritual awakening in that land.

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To the beloved of the Lord, the members of the National Spiritual Assembly:

 

Mr. N. R. Vakil, Mr. M. U. Abasi, Mr Hashmatu'llah, Haji Ahmad, Mr. A. Bahram, Mr. M. Kodadad, Dr Kaushal Kishore, Prof Pritam Singh, Mr. I. Bakhtiar

Care of the Secretary, Dr Kaushal Kishore, India.

June 1, 1923

Dear fellow workers in the Cause of Baha'u'llah!

Your long awaited letter, penned by our dear and devoted brother, Mr. N. R. Vakil, has been received, and read with profound interest. I note with deep satisfaction the vigour and earnestness with which you are conducting the affairs of the Movement throughout the length and breadth of that vast and distant land, and ardently pray that you may achieve, individually and collectively, the highest success in all your endeavours.

Regarding the "Baha'i News", I strongly urge those responsible for its publication, and in particular, aim beloved friends, Prof. Pritam Singh, Mr. Vakil, Mr. Hashmatu'llah, Mr. M.U. Abasi, Mirza Niku, Mr. Ardeshir Khodadad, and Haji Ahmad, to do their utmost that this Baha'i organ may increase in volume, widen in scope, broaden in its outlook, improve in style and general presentation, and reflect more extensively the activities of the friends in India, Burma and elsewhere. As a magazine that has been established in the days of our departed Master, and been the recipient of His special favours and blessings, it ought, and I have no doubt it will, with your active support and under your constant and general supervision, carry our the great plan it is destined to fulfil in this world.

With regard to Burma and its Baha'i activities, I trust you realize that that province falls directly within the sphere of your activities, and although a Central Council for all Burma is in the process of establishment, that Council as well as all local Assemblies throughout Burma will have to be under the protection, care and direction of the All-India Spiritual Assembly.

I would indeed welcome regular, frequent and comprehensive reports from the National Assembly on the various branches of its manifold activities, and will spare no effort to contribute my bumble share in consolidating and extending the Teaching Campaign throughout that vast Dominion. <p6>

 

I would be pleased to receive the permanent postal and telegraphic address of the Secretary of the National Assembly, and am confident that by the grace of Baha'u'llah and under the guiding Hand of our beloved Master, we shall all carry triumphantly the noble task entrusted to our charge to a speedy and successful conclusion. Your brother and fellow-worker,

Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine

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The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful in Rangoon, Care of the Members of the Spiritual Assembly.

June 1, 1923

Dearly beloved brethren and sisters in 'Abdu'l-Baha Your most welcome letter has rejoiced my heart, and has redoubled my confidence and hope in that little band of earnest and ardent followers of the Baha'i Faith who labour so devotedly for the diffusion of the Light of Baha'u'llah throughout the world.

The glowing account you give me of your recent efforts and activities to extend and consolidate the Campaign of Service in that land has been shared with the resident friends and pilgrims in the Holy Land, and incorporated in the circular letter which the Haifa Spiritual Assembly addresses to the Baha'i world. It will send, I am sure, a thrill of enthusiasm and courage throughout the body of the friends the world over, and will serve to strengthen the ties that bind us all to you, our beloved co-workers in that far eastern land!

I am looking forward with the greatest interest, to the time when your high hopes will have been fully realized, your plans fulfilled and your selfless efforts crowned with glorious success. It is my fervent hope and prayer that your endeavours to constitute a Central Council for all Burma, and establish a Baha'i Magazine, exclusively devoted to the progress of the work in that province, will soon bear abundant fruit, and will stand a testimony to the efficiency, the energy and the zeal of the beloved Burmese friends.

May our loving and ever watchful Master, guide and protect you in all the services you are so whole heartedly tendering to His sacred Threshold, and may He enable you to contribute your full share in carrying out His Great Purpose for mankind! This is my prayer for you all whenever I visit the Three Holy Shrines, and I feel certain that <p7> He will not fail to answer it, if we but hold fast to those principles for which He lived, laboured and died.

Awaiting your joyful news, I am your devoted brother,

Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine

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The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful in Mandalay, Daidanaw-Kalazoo, and Tanbingyanng. Care of Aqa Seyed Mustapha, Mandalay, Burma.

June 2,1923

Dearly beloved brethren and sisters in 'Abdu'l-Baha!

The detailed report I have recently received from the tried and faithful servant of Baha'u'llah, Aqa Seyed Mustapha, regarding the progress of your labours in those remote regions of the world has filled my heart with hope and gladness, and has served to fortify the ties of loving fellowship that bind our hearts together in the service of

His Cause.

I have read and re-read the account of your activities with profound interest, and have been deeply touched to realize how constantly and fervently you arc carrying on the work entrusted to your charge. May His Spirit guide you, sustain you and protect you in all your endeavours, and make of you the vanguard of His Host that shall conquer the world.

I shall await the joyful news of the expansion of your work, the establishment of your Magazine, the consolidation of your Assemblies, the increase of your numbers, with keen interest, and wish to assure you again and again of my readiness and desire to help you and serve you in your efforts to promote the Cause in even the uttermost corners of the world.

By day and by night, in my hours of prayer and meditation, I tenderly remember every one of you, and pray from the bottom of my heart, for your spiritual happiness, material prosperity, and ultimate success in your sacred mission in this world.

I shall be most pleased to receive frequent and direct letters from every Baha'i locality in Burma, and will not fail to do all I can to stimulate your work, and extend your activities throughout that distant province.

 

May the day be not far distant when the few and ardent followers <p8> of the Faith in that land, will have increased a hundred foil, and the promises of our beloved 'Abdu'l-Baha strikingly and speedily fulfilled.

Your brother and fellow worker,

Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine

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Mr. N.R. Vakil, B.A. L.L.B. Hawadia, Chakale, Surat, India.

June 20, 1923

My dear brother,

Your letter of June 6th, written to our dear Shoghi Effendi, with the enclosed letter of our dear brother, Mr. Hishmat'ullah, was received yesterday. Your previous letter to him was also received.

You mention in your previous letter that the friends in India are requesting him to send Aqa Mirza Mahmud Zarghani to India, because be is greatly needed in India to serve the Cause of God.

Shoghi Effendi instructed me to tell you in this letter that he will gladly send Aga Mirza Mahmud to India, but nowadays he is occupied in some special service. Later on he will be sent to them. Please extend this news to the dear friends, together with his tender love. There is no doubt that out brother, Mirza Mahmud, is the qualified teacher for India. The beloved Master has testified to this. But I believe he will be here for at least three months more.

Our dear Shoghi Effendi, owing to the shock he received at the sudden news of the Ascension of our Master and owing to the great fatigue occasioned to him through the excess of work has become susceptible to malaria of which Haifa is a great centre. This summer is very hot too. He was troubled with malaria two days or three in every week. So the members of the Holy Family conjointly with the Haifa Spiritual Assembly repeatedly begged him to change his residence during these hot summer months to some cooler climate. At last he affectionately accepted our humble entreaty and left this morning for Egypt whence he'll proceed to some summer resort as he considers suitable. He wishes all the friends to be more active in his absence. <p9>

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NOVEMBER 26, 1923

MAY PAINFUL REMEMBRANCE OF BELOVED'S PASSING

INFLAME US WITH THE SPIRIT OF DEVOTION AND SERVICE

TO HIS CAUSE.

SHOGHI

To the beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful throughout India and Burma. Care of the National Spiritual Assembly.

December 5, 1923

My dearest friends:

It is a great pleasure and privilege for me to renew the bonds of fellowship and affection that have always united our hearts in the service of our beloved Master. I need not recall to your minds the warm and abiding place which that gifted Dominion has always occupied in our Beloved's heart, and the high hopes He cherished for its future contribution towards the triumph of the Movement in those distant regions of the earth.

I am sure the hour has struck when those dearly beloved pioneers of the Master's Cause, scattered throughout the length and breadth of that vast and promising land, should unite, consolidate their forces, and effectively combine for the laying of a firm foundation for the future progress of their noble task. It is my earnest hope and my most cherished desire that at the forthcoming convention the vigour and enlightened efforts of the Baha'i youth of India, coupled with the generous support and devotion of the old beloved Parsec friends, and reinforced by the vast numbers of the ardent followers of the Faith in Burma, may, by imparting power and brilliancy to its proceedings, herald an era of unprecedented activity for the ultimate recognition of the Cause by the peoples of that country.

I shall welcome with genuine satisfaction every effort which that talented and untiring servant of Baha'u'llah, our highly esteemed sister Mrs. Stannard, may exert in this connection, and would feel truly gratified to learn of her determination to play a conspicuous part in the presentation of the Cause in the eyes of the enlightened public.

May the sustaining grace of God, the power of Baha'u'llah, and the loving counsels of our beloved 'Abdu'l-Baha guide you and aid you in your mighty endeavours for the accomplishment of you task.

I shall eagerly await any particulars you might wish to send me <p10> regarding your various activities in the service of the Cause, and I trust that during the interval between now and Ridvan a complete and careful arrangement for the successful conduct of the coming Convention will have been drawn by all the friends and assemblies of India and Burma, and to which, I assure you, I shall be most pleased to contribute my humble share of cooperation and advice.

Hoping to hear from you, individually and collectively, and assuring you of my constant prayers on your behalf, I am your brother and fellow worker,

Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine

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To the members of the National Spiritual Assembly of India and Burma.

Care of the Secretary, Dr Kaushal Kishore.

December 27, 1923

Beloved co-workers in the Cause!

I have received your letter dated December 6th, 1923, and am glad to learn of your activities, of your steadfastness and zeal in the path of service.

Regarding the position of the Baha'i women in India and Burma, and their future collaboration with the men in the administrative work of the Cause, I feel that the time is now ripe that those women who have already conformed to the prevailing custom in India and Burma by discarding the veil should not only be given the right to vote for the election of their local and national representatives, but should themselves be eligible to the membership of all Baha'i Assemblies throughout India and Burma, be they local or national.

This definite and most important step, however, should be taken with the greatest care and caution, prudence and thoughtfulness. Due regard must be paid to their actual capacity and present attainments, and only those who are best qualified for membership, be they men or women, and irrespective of social standing, should be elected to the extremely responsible position of a member of the Baha'i Assembly.

This momentous decision, I trust, will prove to be a great incentive to the women Baha'is throughout India and Burma who, I hope, will now bestir themselves and endeavour to the best of their ability to acquire a better and more profound knowledge of the Cause, to take a more active and systematic a part in the general affairs of the <p11> Movement, and prove themselves in every way enlightened, responsible and efficient co-workers to their fellowmen in their common task for the advancement of the Cause throughout their country.

May they fully realize their high responsibilities in this day, may they do all in their power to justify the high hopes we cherish for their future, and may they prove themselves in every respect worthy of the noble mission which the Baha'i world is now entrusting to their charge.

Your fellow worker,

Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine <p12>

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1924

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OCTOBER 2, 1924

MY BIRTHDAY SHOULD NOT BE COMMEMORATED.

SHOGHI

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Mr. N. R. Vakil Hawadia, Chakla, Surat, India.

November 5, 1924

My Dear Baha'i Brother, Your most spiritual letter of October 24th, addressed to our beloved Guardian, Shoghi Effendi, arrived yesterday and imparted real joy to his dear heart, for it indicates that the dear and loyal friends in India are whole heartedly striving in spreading the heavenly Teachings in that blessed country.

This afternoon he instructed me to write this conveying to you his profound affection and assuring you that he ardently prays at the Holy Shrines so that your confirmation may be more and more day by day and the hopes of our beloved Master, 'Abdu'l-Baha or the illumination of the people of India may be speedily realized.

The members of the Holy Family are all well and happy and are <p13> always expecting glad tidings from the result of the sacrificial services of the dear Indian friends. They are sending you all their loving greetings.

Nowadays we have the pleasure of having with us many pilgrims from America, France, Germany and Persia. They have brought with them heart-refreshing news from the progress of the Cause of God in their respective countries.

My loyal End self sacrificing brother: I trust that the National Assembly of which you are the honoured and esteemed President will distinguish itself by its unremitting labours, its profound wisdom, its distinct contributions to the deepening of the spirit of love, service, unity, understanding and confidence amongst the friends. It is the vital and urgent duty of the Secretary to keep in close and constant touch with Burma and the various other Baha'i localities and distribute with efficiency and promptitude all the glad tidings it receives from the Holy Land and elsewhere. I assure you of my ardent loving prayers.

Shoghi

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DECEMBER 4,1924

BURMA'S PARTICIPATION EXTREMELY DESIRABLE FOR SUCCESS.

SHOGHI

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1925

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To my honoured friends, the editors and publishers of "The Dawn."

February 7,1925

Loyal and steadfast workers in the Cause of God!

I have read the recent issues of "The Dawn" which you have been so kind as to send me with feelings of heart-felt admiration and gratitude.

This valuable organ of the Baha'i community in Burma has displayed magnificent efforts in the past, has earned the satisfaction and esteem of its readers, and is, steadily and determinedly, exerting itself to establish its claim of providing for a long standing need and fulfilling a vital function.

Burma, that beloved and picturesque country, standing sentinel on the eastern confines of the Baha'i world, with its vast number of modest yet ardent followers of the Faith, should pursue diligently its work of extending further and further into the very heart of the Far East the sphere of its healing mission in life.

While maintaining the closest and most cordial co operation with the body of the friends in India, as a sign of the growing solidarity of the Cause of God, it should concentrate its energies on the consolidation of its work in her own particular field. It is the privilege of <p15> the Burmese friends to re adjust and stimulate their own activities, lay down their own programme for an intensive and systematic campaign of Teaching, and, with an unshakable resolve, arise to carry it to a successful conclusion.

May your cherished and promising Journal eloquently recount the tale of your deeds; acquaint your fellow labourers in distant fields with your hopes, your plans, and your achievements; reflect the spirit of your selfless endeavours, and stand as witness of the growing vitality of the noble work you are destined to achieve.

May He, Who loves you and watches over you, guide your steps, cheer your hearts, reinforce your efforts, and richly reward you for your loyalty, your perseverance and courage. I assure you of my affectionate - sentiments, my deep appreciation, and my prayers for you all.

Your brother and fellow worker,

Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine

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[To N. R. Vakil]

March 5,1925

My Dear Baha'i Brother, Your letter of February 20th addressed to our dear Guardian was very gladly received and he was very much pleased to note the measures you have taken to bring a better understanding between the friends in India and Burma. He was specially interested and pleased in the invitation accorded to you by the Arya Samaj. Nothing, I dare say, can be more encouraging and gladsome to Shoghi Effendi than the news of the activities of the friends in such a vast and promising field as India In the past few years the harvest of the friends' endeavours was not as rich and abundant as we all would wish and undoubtedly the political throes through which India has been passing and the general unrest which such conditions have brought about, account to a large measure for this comparative unfruitfulness in the self-sacrificing efforts of the Indian Baha'i. Yet nothing must damp our zeal and we cannot for a moment doubt the remarkable change that the Master said would take place in that country.

We have been all very much interested in the first hand information which Mrs. Stannard has given us and we lament the formidable difficulties and obstacles with which the Baha'is must cope in their <p16> effort to imbue the individual with a new spirit and to bring new measures of reform in the social order. We shall, however, pray for you all and eagerly await every good news you have to share with us. Assuring you all as always of our Guardian's affection and prayers for each and every one of you.

My precious fellow worker: I always eagerly await detailed and frequent reports from the National Assembly and desire strongly its members to meet as often as possible and actively, efficiently, and constantly direct, co ordinate and reinforce the activities of the individuals and local Assemblies throughout India _and Burma_. I thirst for more specific information and urge its secretary to ensure that every communication from the Holy Land or from any other Baha'i centre is promptly and widely distributed. I assure you of my loving prayers,

Shoghi

===================

 

[TO N.R. VAKIL]

April 1, 1925

My Dear Baha'i Brother, Your letter dated March 13th to the Guardian, Shoghi Effendi, was very gladly received and he read it with much interest.

A few weeks ago Shoghi Effendi wrote a long letter to the friends in India and Burma, and as I did not know that you wanted the letter to be sent to you in person, it was sent according to usage and custom to the secretary Dr Kaushal Kishore. I clearly wrote him, however, in a letter which I sent him, that copies of Shoghi Effendi's letter should be sent to all friends in India and Burma and thus make the friends know and understand just how our Guardian wishes them to feel towards each other and what should be their basis of cooperation.

I hope he will not fail in sending out copies of that letter.

We were sorry to know of the state of tension that exists between India and Burma. Let us hope that Shoghi Effendi's letter will draw both parties nearer together and so ease up the matter. It is very sad to see sections of such a continent, though closely connected together, unable to work in harmony. Let us pray and also try our best that all petty misunderstandings should be forgotten and that the <p17> work should start on a new basis firmer than before. In reply to your question as to the suspension of the publication of the "Baha'i News", Shoghi Effendi puts it all for you to decide and the National Assembly should see which is better and at the same time more practicable.

My able and loyal co-worker:

I do hope and pray that the Indians and the Burmese friends will once the new National Spiritual Assembly is re-elected support their representatives and whole-heartedly unite in promoting the work of the Cause. An earnest, capable, energetic, loyal and experienced soul must discharge the responsible and arduous duties of a National Secretary. So much depends upon him. You will have my fullest and unqualified support in impressing upon the friends the supreme necessity of establishing forthwith and maintaining to the best of their ability the institution of the National Fund. I will pray for you all and assure you personally of my great affection.

Shoghi

===================

[To N.R. Vakil]

May 12, 1925

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Shoghi Effendi has asked me to thank you for your kind letter of 2nd April and to assure you that he is deeply appreciative of the sincerity and devotion of Mr. Hashmat'ullah and the value of his services to our Beloved Cause.

By now the election of the new National Spiritual Assembly and of its office-bearers will probably be completed. The office of Secretary of the National Spiritual Assembly is most important and the smooth and efficient working of the Baha'i organization in India and Burma will depend to a large extent on him. Shoghi Effendi hopes that the new Secretary of the National Assembly will send him as soon as possible a full list of the members and office-bearers of the Assembly with his own postal address. He would like him also, as soon as possible, to procure from each of the Local Assemblies in India and Burma a full list of the members and office bearers of the Loci Spiritual Assembly with the address of the secretary, and to <p18> transmit a copy of that list to Shoghi Effendi. This is to be done every year immediately after the election of the National Spiritual Assembly.

Further it is desirable that each Local Assembly should have a register of the names and addresses of all declared Baha'is in their district and should be careful to keep the register up to date, promptly noting any changes in the address or number of the believers. It is also desirable that the National Secretary should have a list of all believers in India and Burma who are living in districts where there is no Local Spiritual Assembly, with full postal address in each case, so that these believers may be kept in touch with the body of believers by letters, literature etc. and travelling Baha'is visiting these districts may be put in touch with the believers there. Shoghi Effendi would like to have a copy of this list also.

The National Secretary should keep in as close touch as possible with the Local Spiritual Assemblies, and should urge the secretaries of these Local Assemblies to furnish regular reports of the progress of the Movement in their respective localities, and should, by means of circular letters etc. keep these Local Assemblies and isolated believers informed of all matters of importance affecting the Cause, remind them of the importance of contributing as regularly and generously as possible to the National Fund, and so on.

It is obvious that to carry out these manifold duties efficiently, thoroughly and tactfully is no easy task and Shoghi Effendi greatly hopes that some one may be found who will be able to devote the necessary ability, time and energy to carry them out satisfactorily.

A "Baha'i Yearbook" is now in course of preparation and Shoghi Effendi wishes to include in this "Yearbook" a complete list of the Local Spiritual Assemblies throughout the world, with the address of the secretary in each case, also a complete list of those localities where there are resident Baha'is but where no Local Spiritual Assembly exists. It will probably be impracticable to include the addresses of all isolated believers, but these should be known to the secretary of the National Spiritual Assembly in each country, so that they may be available on application to him.

Will you kindly communicate the contents of this letter to the Secretary f the National Spiritual Assembly and ask him to write to Shoghi Effendi as soon as possible.

Shoghi Effendi sends loving greetings to all the members of the National Spiritual Assembly and assures them of his heartfelt prayers <p19> that they may be guided and strengthened by the confirmations of the Spirit in the arduous and responsible duties to which they have been called.

With kindest regards and best wishes...

 

It will interest you to know that the Baha'is of Egypt have just elected their first National Spiritual Assembly.

My dearly-beloved brother in 'Abdu'l-Baha: Your past and present efforts are indeed worthy of the deepest admiration and the highest praise. Concentrate as much as you can at present on the consolidation of the foundations of the National Spiritual Assembly of India and Burma. This is the first and most essential step to further expansion in any direction. The institution of the National Fund is of vital importance and should be greatly stressed and emphasized in every circular or communication addressed to the friends. I will continue to pray for you from all my heart and assure you of my support and brotherly love.

Shoghi

===================

 

 

[TO Zaituneh Ma Gyi, Mandalay, Burma]

October 29, 1925

Allah'u'Abha

Dear Baha'i Sister,

Your loving letter of 9th April brought joy to the heart of our Beloved Guardian. He was away in Europe for about four months and only returned to Haifa two weeks ago and that is the reason why the answer to your letter has been so long delayed. He assures you of his heartfelt prayers on behalf of your self, your husband Ma Shaffi, your two sons, Manng Ba Kin and Manng Ba Tin, with their families, your three daughters Miss Ma Ma, Miss Hla Hla, B.A., and Miss Mya Mya, your sister Ma Hline and brother Manng Ba, and all the dear friends of Mandalay and Burma. He rejoices to hear of the good progress which the Cause of God is making in that country and is profoundly grateful for the spirit of love and devotion that animates the friends there. <p20> Shoghi Effendi is in excellent health after his visit to Europe. The Greatest Holy Leaf is also well.

Our dear Guardian, the Greatest Holy Leaf, The Holy Mother and the other friends here join in prayers and good wishes that you may be confirmed and strengthened in the service of the Beloved and may be the means of widely diffusing the divine fragrances, and scattering the seeds of divine truth in the fertile soil of the hearts.

My dear spiritual sister:

I wish to assure you personally of my fervent and continued prayers for yourself your beloved family and the dear unforgettable brothers and sisters in Burma. May our Beloved guide you, inspire and strengthen you and lead you to glorious victory. Your true brother and well-wisher

Shoghi

===================

 

To the maid servant of God Halimeh (Pali-Ama-Ma-Myaing) c/o S.M. Roumie, Baha'i Assembly, 621-Gordon 83rd St., Mandalay

October 29, 1925

Dear Baha'i Sister,

Shoghi Effendi was much touched by the receipt of your kind letter of 7th October...

Our beloved Guardian returned only a fortnight ago in excellent health after a visit to Europe, which lasted about four months. He is busy from early until late with the many duties that press upon him and the problems that demand his attention. The Blessed Cause is growing and spreading in nearly all parts of the world. That is a matter for great rejoicing, but Shoghi Effendi regrets that owing to this very growth it has become impossible for him to reply to the letters of individual believers, as he should like to do. He feels that questions affecting whole groups of believers, the Spiritual Assemblies, specially the National Spiritual Assemblies, and matters of general importance for the whole Baha'i world, have the first claim upon his time and attention.

He assures you, however, of his earnest and heartfelt prayers on your behalf and hopes that rich blessings may attend you and that you may ever be guided, strengthened and supported by the divine confirmations. <p21>

===================

 

OCTOBER 31, 1925

LOVING APPRECIATION. MAY INDIAN BURMESE NATIONAL

REPRESENTATIVES FULFIL OUR HIGHEST EXPECTATIONS.

SHOGHI

NOVEMBER 2, 1925

IRAQ'S COURT OF APPEAL UNEXPECTEDLY GAVE DECISION

AGAINST US CONCERNING BAGHDAD HOUSE. SITUATION

VERY GRAVE. REQUEST NATIONAL AND EVERY LOCAL

ASSEMBLY INDIA BURMA COMMUNICATE BY CABLE AND

LETTER WITH IRAQ HIGH COMMISSIONER AND KING OF

IRAQ DECLARING IN FIRM CONSIDERATE LANGUAGE THEIR

STRONG ATTACHMENT TO BAHA'U'LLAH'S SACRED HOUSE

AND THEIR EARNEST APPEAL FOR THE CONSIDERATION OF

THEIR SPIRITUAL CLAIMS TO ITS POSSESSION.

SHOGHI

To The Honoured Members of The National Spiritual Assembly of

India And Burma.

November 18, 1925

Dear Baha'i Brothers, Your letter of the 6th instant written to our beloved Guardian, Shoghi Effendi, has arrived and rejoiced his dear heart with the good news It contains.

Yesterday he ordered me to write a few words and acknowledge the receipt of your letter, conveying to you his love and greeting. He was much pleased to see that you have followed his telegraphic instructions concerning the Baghdad House promptly.

From other centres also telegraphic communications have been sent to both the High Commissioner and to His Majesty King Faisal We are hoping for a desirable result. Up to this time no definite information has reached us. We shall keep you informed as soon as we receive any.

Our beloved Guardian is in excellent health and so the Holy Family and all the friends here are happy and well too... <p22>

My dear friends:

The prompt and effective measures you have taken are worthy of the highest praise. I will inform you if further action is deemed necessary. I hope and pray your devoted efforts will yield abundant fruit in the near future.

Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

 

NOVEMBER 24, 1925

ESSLEMONT UNEXPECTEDLY PASSED AWAY. CABLE CONDOLENCES

FAMILY THROUGH SIMPSON. ADVISE BELIEVERS

DEDICATE SPECIAL DAY FOR PRAYER AND REMEMBRANCE.

SHOGHI

===================

 

[TO N.R. VAKIL]

November 24, 1925

Dear Baha'i Brother, Our dear Guardian, Shoghi Effendi, has received your letter of October 27th which has rejoiced his dear heart with its contents relative to the mindfulness of the dear friends in India towards the welfare of the Cause of God in that country...

Shoghi Effendi prays for all of you and hopes that through your practical devotion, you will all attract divine assistance more and more, day by day, and so this corning year the Cause of God will make unprecedented progress in that country. He sends you and all the members of the National Spiritual Assembly his affectionate greeting and expects your good news regularly.

My dear fellow worker:

I pray that your newly constituted National Spiritual Assembly may grow from strength to strength, may coordinate and consolidate the ever expanding activities of the friends in India and Burma and inaugurate afresh campaign of teaching that will redound to the glory and power of the Most Great Name. May the projected Congress at Cawnpore attract <p23> widespread interest and stimulate the work undertaken by the friends in that promising country. I assure you of my best wishes for your success.

Your true brother and fellow worker,

Shoghi

<p24>

===================

 

[To N.R. Vakil]

March 27, 1926

My Dear Baha'i Brother, Your letters dated November 27th, December 11th, 18th and 24th 1925, and January 5th and February 28th to the dear Guardian was all received and read by him with the greatest interest.

It is always a source of immeasurable joy and encouragement to our dear Guardian to learn of your increasing activities in serving our dear Cause and also of the growing measure of success which you are meeting with in all your endeavours. The unity of the friends in India and Burma, the spread of the Cause in that vast country and specially among the real natives, intelligent connections with the universities and schools and the direction of the thoughts of the students to a proper understanding of the Cause and its great mission on earth, will not only be a real accomplishment on the part of our dear fellow workers, but will reeve to a very large extent our dear Guardian of the stupendous task that he shoulders, and will give him the deepest joy and confidence. We earnestly trust that through the help of our dear Master from on high all your efforts will be crowned with <p25> success. Shoghi Effendi is always interested to hear from you on the work in India and to help you in every possible way.

You are, I am sure, in touch with Mr. Horace Holley in America and you would be interested to know that they are publishing soon a Baha'i "Year Book" which will be of widespread interest not only to the Baha'is but also to many interested men and women in our dear

Cause.

Mrs. Stannard is very successful in her work in Geneva and she has already started a fine centre there. She is able to make many connections with influential men and learned people and this is in itself a great work.

Assuring you always of our Guardian's deep interest in your work and of his prayers for your success.

My dear and valuable fellow worker: I am very pleased and gratified to learn of your persistent efforts in advancing and consolidating the Cause. The establishment of a central office in Delhi is a great step forward and I await very eagerly the first issue of the publication of the National Spiritual Assembly of India and Burma.

The Burmese friends are very satisfied and pleased with the consideration shown and the activity displayed by your Assembly and my prayer is that the relations of the National Body with the Local Assemblies will grow firmer everyday. I will specially remember the friends who' are promoting the Cause among the Qadiyani community whenever I visit the Shrines. I wish them the fullest success. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

 

To The Baha'i Spiritual Assembly Of Daidanaw-Kalazoo.

April 15, 1926

Dear Spiritual Brothers, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated March 29th 1926. He appreciates very much the kind offer you have made towards the securing of the lands around the Shrine, specially as it entailed a larger amount of sacrifice. He hopes that the spirit which the friends have shown in this field will manifest itself again in the other services they render.

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to assure you of his prayers and <p26> expresses his hope to see the small groups in India and Burma develop into important centres radiating their activities to all the country around and becoming the leaven of goodness in that extensive land.

My dearly beloved fellow workers: I am deeply touched by this further evidence of your unsparing devotion and self sacrificing efforts for the protection and promotion of the interests of the Cause. The welfare, success and happiness of my unforgettable friends in Kunjangoon are the objects of my prayer at the Holy Shrines. They are close to my heart and I entertain the fondest hopes for their future expansion and service to the Cause. With great affection and loving sympathy. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

May 17, 1926

My Dear Baha'i Brother, I write to thank you in behalf of Shoghi Effendi for your much appreciated letters of March 26th, and May 6th...

Shoghi Effendi trusts that your elections are over and that they were conducted in the proper manner. He earnestly hopes that the new National Spiritual Assembly will be able to accelerate the progress of the Cause in India and Burma and will bring in the dawning of a new day for the Baha'i Movement in India. Both Shoghi Effendi and the friends have had to satisfy their eagerness with insufficient progress in the past, and although there are many difficulties to meet and overcome and in spite of the fact that no one is more alive to them than Shoghi Effendi himself, we hope and pray that the future may have great accomplishments in store for us. My dear fellow-worker: Though immersed in a multitude of activities and extremely overburdened with anxieties and cares, I still find the time to remember you in my prayers and supplicate for you Divine Guidance and strength.

Persevere in your labours and rest assured that I will continue to pray for you from the bottom of my heart.

Shoghi

===================<p27>

 

July 10, 1926

My dear Mr. Vakil:

Shoghi Effendi received your letter dated June 11th and was very glad to see the result of the election of the National Spiritual Assembly.

He sincerely hopes that this year will witness a great change and progress for the Cause in India. As the friends are sincere in their love and devotion, the members of the Assembly strong in their faith and unfailing in their services, there is full assurance of an ultimate victory and final settlement of the existing difficulties. Shoghi Effendi has great hopes in you personally and trusts in your wise judgement, watchful attentiveness and absolute assurance in the Cause you serve.

He wants me to assure you of his prayers.

He also hopes that the friends in India will do their very best to bring together the Hindus and Muhammadans. In such cases the friends can show their goodwill, devotion to humanity, and disinterestedness in the material result obtained. He will pray that Mr. Hishmatu'llah and Prof. Pritam Singh will be guided in this undertaking and ably represent the spirit of the Cause as well as its teachings. Being competent themselves and having the necessary divine blessing and guidance it is sure that they will achieve much.

Maybe this will be a good chance for attracting the attention of some of the prominent leaders to the reality of the Cause.

My dear fellow worker:

I have written in person to the Bombay Assembly and urged them most emphatically to support morally and financially the National Assembly and the National Fund. Please assure Mr. Hishmatu'llah. We have to repeat and repeat over and over gain until the truth, the necessity and the urgency of our Beloved's instructions sink in the hearts and minds of the believers. I am sure you will continue to remind the friends of their primary obligations. Assuring you again of my prayers for your success in your high endeavours. I am your true and sincere brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p28>

Mr. and Mrs. Pritam Singh College of Commerce, Cawnpore.

July 16, 1926

My Dear Mr. And Mrs. Pritam Singh,

This is to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated June 24th to Shoghi Effendi. He was very glad to see your news about the progress of the Cause in India. He hopes that the hopes the Master had for that vast country will soon be realized and give you and the other friends in India the satisfaction of having accomplished it... He specially wants me to ask you both to concentrate your energy and spare time in serving the Cause and spreading the message...

The primary duty of Baha'is like you, who have the firm belief and faith combined with education and intellectual training is to see that the Cause is properly presented to the outside world and that it is daily gaining allegiance from that class of people who are in every respect the choicest in that land.

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to assure you of his prayers and he hopes that your heart's desire in seeing the Cause prosper will soon be realized.

My dear and precious fellow workers:

I was delighted with your letter. Your earnest, patient and devoted efforts are deeply appreciated by me and. I have the greatest hopes in your future contributions to the progress and triumph of this beloved Cause. I will ever remember you in my prayers and will not fail to supplicate for you from the bottom of my heart the Almighty's imperishable blessings.

Your true and affectionate brother,

Shoghi

September 7, 1926

Dear Mr. Vakil, 'Abdu'l-Baha used often to say that the difference between a prophet and an ordinary person is that the latter looks only to the present. He does not try to imagine the future victories and thereby forget the present trivial obstructions. The prophet, however, having <p29> a deep insight in the future condition of things, sees his ultimate victory and does not get disheartened even though he sees a wholesale massacre of his followers.

As Baha'is we should follow the prophet's method. We know that the Cause will ultimately conquer and its ranks be fully united.

We know that the Master's promises will ultimately be realized, therefore why be discouraged by trivial oppositions we see on our way. We should rather add to our zeal and persist in our prayers and endeavours... It always takes time for a people to change from one administration to another. Up to the present they have been accustomed to think of the Local Assemblies as next only to the Centre of the Cause, and it will take some time and training before they can admit another superior...

Shoghi Effendi is appreciative of all the odds the National Assembly in India is putting up with, and prays for their success and guidance. He wishes me specially to extend his greetings to you and assure you of his prayers.

My dearest brother.

I have cabled to Bombay and will soon confirm it by letter. I have urged them to support consistently and whole-heartedly the very essential and vital institutions of the National Fund and the National Assembly.

It must be made clear to them all that continued support to these twin institutions is the corner stone of all future achievements, the mainspring from which all future blessings will flow. Persevere in your heroic effort and remember that the end is glorious and bright

Shoghi

===================

[TO N.R. VAKIL]

September 12, 1926

Dear Spiritual Brother, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of both of your letters dated August 6th 1926. He was most grieved to learn of the great sorrow that has befallen Mrs. Vakil and yourself. A child is undoubtedly the most precious material object a person can possess, and to see it pass away is an irreparable loss to be deeply lamented. We should, however, remember the promises we are given of the <p30> world to come, and picturing to ourselves the greater spiritual development - the departed ones obtain, comfort ourselves and patiently await our reunion there. Shoghi Effendi wishes me to express to both Mrs. Vakil and yourself, his heartfelt condolences and assure you of the share he bears of this sad loss.

Shoghi Effendi was rather comforted to hear of the favourable approach the Bombay friends have made. He hopes that this will be the first step towards a complete mutual understanding and a sincere and permanent assistance to the National Body in the many phases of its activities. The "Kaukab", he believes, is of great importance and will gradually show its far-reaching influence in promoting the Cause in India. He wishes you to continue it, even though for the present, it has to be greatly subsidized.

My dear brother and co-worker:

I greatly appreciate the evidences of both your moral and material assistance in promoting the interests of our beloved Cause. I share with you the severe loss which you have sustained and my heart goes out to you in brotherly sympathy, trusting that the Divine Consoler will by His unfailing bounties relieve your sorrowful hearts and grant you both in the world to come the joy of eternal reunion with your dear and departed child. Your sympathizing brother,

Shoghi

===================

The Honourable Members of The National Spiritual Assembly of India and Burma.

October 28, 1926

Dear Friends, I take pleasure in thanking you on behalf of our dear Guardian, Shoghi Effendi, for your letter of September 11th, through your esteemed president Mr. N.R. Vakil.

As it announced the election of a new body to take up the responsible but lofty work of supervising and guiding the promulgation of the Baha'i Cause throughout India and Burma, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to take this opportunity and assure each and every member of that distinguished body not only of his heartfelt congratulations and prayers, but also of the high hopes that he cherishes for <p31> you all. It is from you and through you that he expects to see emanating that glorious Spirit for which our departed Master gave his entire life; and with your earnest endeavours, your consummate wisdom and your unflinching faith he awaits to see you lead the humble workers of that great country to an ultimate victory.

May I also take this opportunity and express the great desire of Shoghi Effendi that the National Assembly should try to be in close communication with him. To him it is a joy beyond words to try to do all in his power to help you in the noble work you have undertaken.

My dearly beloved friends:

Now that the National Spiritual Assembly has been properly constituted and its officers duly appointed, it is incumbent upon each and all to introduce and promote such measures as will consolidate the work that you have so well begun. The institution of the National Fund, a "Baha'i Bulletin" similar to the "News Letter" issued by the American National Spiritual Assembly, a rigorous and well conceived campaign of Teaching, a continuous and purposeful endeavour to coordinate the activities of the Local Assemblies and groups throughout India and Burma and the sending of detailed and frequent reports to the Holy Land are among the most primary and urgent requirements of the new day that has dawned upon India. I eagerly await your reports and assure you of my continued prayers for the success of your arduous labours.

Shoghi

===================

NOVEMBER 16, 1926

EFFECTIVE CONTINUANCE OF "KAUKAB" ABSOLUTELY

ESSENTIAL. SENDING NINETEEN POUNDS AS MY HUMBLE

CONTRIBUTION URGE FRIENDS.

SHOGHI

===================

November 16, 1926

Dear Mr. Vakil, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters dated September 10th, October 1st and 18th 1926... <p32>

In a letter which I have lately written to Seyed Jenabe Ali on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, I intimated his desire that a special committee of the National Spiritual Assembly should be created to undertake the management of everything pertaining to the "Kaukab". Furthermore, if a certain sum is offered to the National Fund with the expressed desire that it should be spent for the "Kaukab", i.e., if the offer is labelled, then the National Spiritual Assembly should take into consideration the wish of the giver and spend it only for that purpose. Though the friends are advised to give unlabelled contributions, they cannot in any way be prevented from using their choice in the way it should be spent.

Though the Local Assemblies should give the National Spiritual Assembly all the moral and financial support the latter needs, it is the duty of the National Spiritual Assembly to inspire the necessary confidence in keeping the management of its work as efficiently as possible.

In a cable recently sent to the National Spiritual Assembly, Shoghi Effendi recommended the publication of the "Kaukab". He desires this paper to play an important role in drawing the attention of the more thoughtful and seeking people to the potency of this Divine Cause. I herein enclose a cheque for £19 which Shoghi Effendi desires to be spent for this all important organ of the Cause in India.

Shoghi Effendi as well as the other members of the family are well and send you and the members of your family their loving greetings.

My dearest co-worker.

I am enclosing a general message, clearly worded, emphatically expressed, and vitally important in all its bearings, conveyed through Mirza Mahmood to the National Assembly for the information of all Baha'is in India and Burma. I am sure you will promptly and effectively take all necessary measures for its dissemination throughout India and Burma. The "Kaukab" must, at all costs, be continued, and I feel that its two editors, our Qadiyani friends are the most suitable to form a committee which will conduct its affairs under the direct supervision of the National Assembly. Whatever is contributed to the National Assembly for a specific purpose should be expended for that purpose only, but I would encourage the friends to send unlabelled contributions in <p33> order not to tie the hands of the National Assembly although I do not in the least require them to do so. I will pray for your success from all my heart.

Shoghi

===================

December 21, 1926

Dear Mr. Vakil, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters dated November 26th and December 9th, 1926.

It is most gratifying to him to hear that the difficulties that darkened the horizon of the Cause in India have vanished and the National as well as Local Assemblies are united to further the interests of the Cause. He hopes that "Kaukab" will become a Baha'i organ administered even better than before.

Shoghi Effendi hopes that Aqa Mirza Moneer will cause another stir in India and draw many individuals into a full understanding of the Movement. His zeal as well as knowledge of the Cause stand to his credit and are sure to win him success wherever he goes. Please convey to him Shoghi Effendi's loving greetings and assure him of his prayers.

Shoghi Effendi wishes also to be remembered to Mrs. Vakil whom he will remember in his prayers.

My dear co-worker:

I hope to hear soon of the re-establishment and circulation of the "Kaukab". The matter of the publication of a "Baha'i News Letter" issued by the National Assembly is also of utmost importance. May the support to the National Fund be such as to render it a truly worthy and representative Baha'i periodical. Persevere in your splendid efforts and do not lose heart for I will continue to pray for you from the depth of my heart. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p34>

====

1927

====

 

 

[To N. R. Vakil]

April 25, 1927

My Dear Baha'i Brother,

I thank you so much in behalf of our dear Guardian for your letters of January 7th, February 25th and April 8th.

It is to him always a source of pleasure and encouragement to hear from a veteran and faithful Baha'i worker as yourself, but still more it is the news of your endeavours, the degree of your zeal and earnestness, the amount of success achieved as the President of the National Assembly of India, that swells his heart with the warmest and fondest hopes.

With the opening of this new Baha'i year, our Guardian trusts that it will be marked by a new and greater efforts, by a more intense cooperation among the friends in India and Burma and by an unsurpassed record of success.

Now that Mrs. Schopplocher has in many places broken the ground, it devolves upon the faithful workers in India to follow up the work, to seize every opportunity and to give to her hasty and in many places insufficient services a more permanent and lasting character. <p35>

I express the hopes of our Guardian without disregard to your many problems and difficulties, but the field is so vast and the ground so fresh and fertile, that it cannot but evoke almost unreasonable expectations. This feeling and yearning, I am sure, is much more yours than ours could be.

My dear and esteemed fellow worker:

I urge you to take every means at your disposal in consultation with Mr. Hishmatu'llah to follow up the work that has been so splendidly begun by Mrs. Schopplocher. I would also urge you to arrange for the preparation of an annual report by the National Assembly of the activities of the friends in India and Burma to be forwarded to the American National Spiritual Assembly for insertion in the next issue of the "Annual Baha'i Year Book". A representative group photograph of the Baha'is of divers races and creeds in that land would also greatly enhance the "Year Book", if such a thing is possible. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

May 5, 1927

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter, dated April 22nd 1927... He hopes that by now the result of the elections have been obtained and a strong and capable Body chosen for the furtherance of the Cause in the coming year.

The reports we have received concerning Mirza Moneer's services have all been most satisfying and encouraging. We hope that as a result of this visit many ardent souls will be attracted to the tenets of the Faith.

Shoghi Effendi as well as the other members of the family are all well and join in sending you and Mrs. Vakil their loving greetings.

My dear and valued co-worker:

I am touched by this fresh evidence of your self-sacrificing devotion to the interests of the Cause. Mrs. Schopplocher's letters breathe a spirit of hope and triumph and I earnestly hope that next year her pioneer work will be followed up by the patient and enlightened efforts of an <p36> experienced Baha'i Teacher from the West. I am considering this matter very carefully. I urge you to remind the friends to fulfil their sacred obligations in connexion with the annual renewal of their subscription to the leading periodicals of the Baha'i world and particularly the "La Nova Tago" of Hamburg, the "Star of the West", "The Messager Baha'i" and the "Herald of the South" as well as the "Khurshid-i-Khavar" of Ishqabad and the "Dawn". Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

May 24, 1927

My Dear Bah' Brother, Mr. Vakil, I thank you in behalf of our dear Guardian for your letters of April 29th and the 13th instant, together with enclosures.

He is very glad to learn of the good work of Nabilzadeh and Mrs. Schopflocker and hopes that the friends will follow up their work in order to obtain some definite and permanent results. For a teacher to fly from one end of India to another is not sufficient, there must be somebody who can stay long enough in one place and start regular gatherings.

The latter function naturally falls upon the friends in India and he earnestly hopes that the new year may bring fresh and lasting achievements.

Shoghi Effendi awaits eagerly the result of the election of the National Spiritual Assembly and he should like to see that body accomplish something more than routine work. They should take new steps and carry out a regular campaign in India and Burma.

Assuring you always of our Guardian's love and best wishes.

My dear and valued coworker: It is my hope and prayer that the newly elected National and Local Assemblies may widen the scope of their activities, initiate new and valuable measures, extend the circle of their correspondence with foreign Baha'i' centres, and promote the independence and distinctiveness of the Baha'u'llah. I would urge you to inform the Year Book Committee through Mr. Halley of the results of all elections in India and to send if <p37> possible an annual report to that Committee. Wishing you success and happiness.

Shoghi

===================

July 14, 1927

My Dear Mr. Vakil, I take pleasure in thanking you in behalf of our dear Guardian Shoghi Effendi for your hopeful and encouraging letter of May 20th.

In the midst of his work and many responsibilities, it is a source of comfort for him to feel that the initiative and guidance of the Cause in India is in such able hands and he trusts to see in the near future greater and fuller results.

True, the minds of many are turned away from all that sounds religious, but it is only because they are ill advised as to the meaning of true religion and it is just that mission that devolves upon us to give a new viewpoint, to revive fresh hopes and to guide by the sacred utterances the thoughts and actions of mankind.

Perhaps India has not yet reached the high mark which our hopes have made us expect, but the time still remains and the hopes of our Guardian are anxiously turned to the educated, sincere and zealous fellow brothers he so much loves in India and Burma.

Assuring you always of his help and heartfelt prayers.

My dear and precious co-worker:

I have received lately your second letter dated June 10th, enclosing the list of the members of the newly elected Indian Assemblies as well as the report of the receipts and expenditures of the National Fund. Your loyal and untiring attention to the pressing manifold requirements of our beloved and steadily expanding Cause is a thing never-to-be forgotten and worthy of unqualified praise. I trust you will continue to keep in touch with the American National Assembly whose Secretary is only too anxious to incorporate in the news letter and the "Year Book" every bit of news regarding the progress of the Faith in India and Burma. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p38>

 

[To N. R. Vakil]

August 19, 1927

Dear Baha'i Brother, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your two letters dated June 17th and July 8th as well as your two telegrams informing him of the results of the election of the National Spiritual Assembly. He is very glad indeed to hear of the interview of Mr. Nabilzadeh with the Governor of Burma. He will pray that the seeds he has sown will germinate in the course of time and will prove of great benefit to our beloved Cause.

Our Guardian hopes that henceforth the secretaries of all Local and National Assemblies will immediately upon their election inform the American National Assembly of their membership and the address, that the results may without delay be published in the "Baha'i Year Book".

Our Guardian will not cease to pray for you all that the Beloved may guide you to achieve that which will conduce to the consolidation and extension of the influence of the Cause.

My dear and faithful co-worker.

I trust the newly elected Assembly will endeavour to follow the example of the American National Assembly in method, action, and procedure. The American news letter will indicate clearly the lines along which Baha'i National Assemblies are to conduct their work in future and I earnestly urge you to encourage the friends to follow and adopt the method outlined in its columns. Wishing you success from all my heart,

Shoghi

===================

[To N. R. Vakil]

November 1, 1927

My Dear Baha'i Brother, Our Guardian has been pleased to receive your letter of September 30th and feels gratified above all at the final decision of your National Spiritual Assembly to establish a permanent office at Calcutta. <p39> He hopes that in time this may become an important all India centre for the propagation and administration of the Movement.

For a country like India and also Burma where the Baha'i communities are so much scattered and are of varied extraction, a common centre to coordinate the different efforts and to link tip together both the Assemblies within India, and in the various parts of the world, is also lately necessary, and our Guardian hopes and trusts to see in time great results from this new measure. Of course much depends upon how well this organ functions.

Shoghi Effendi is in good health having taken a good rest during the summer. He awaits as much as ever the good news of the friends in India and above all news of real accomplishments.

My dear brother.

I hope that nothing has transpired of late that might have in any manner affected the expansion of the work in those regions. I fully realize your single-handedness in such a vast and varied field, but I assure you, dearest friend, that your reward is proportionately great, for He that watches over you is aware of the great devotion which animates you in the pursuit of your arduous and noble task. More power to your elbow.

Shoghi

===================

[To N.R. Vakil]

November 16, 1927

My Dear Baha'i Brother, I thank you on behalf of our dear Shoghi Effendi for your letter of November 4th which he was very glad to receive.

Your frequent communications keeping him in close touch with your activities and the work in India, are deeply appreciated, and he relies much upon your efforts to coordinate the work in India and to have more direct and material results than we have been accustomed to lately. When compared to some other countries and remembering the many years since the Cause was first known there, India, I am afraid, does not come up to expectations. Are we going to accept this secondary position or has the future a surprise in store? At any rate we patiently wait. <p40>

 

My dear and precious co-worker:

I will send in a few days copies of a detailed and important letter addressed to the Baha'is of the East which I request you to circulate forthwith amongst the friends in India and Burma.[1] Will you send the signed copy to Bombay and dispose of the rest as you think best. I will pray for you and your dear wife that you may in the service of our beloved Master attain to your heart's desire. I will particularly remember you at the night commemorating the ascension of our beloved Master.

[1 General letter in Persian]

Your true brother,

Shoghi.

=================== <p41>

 

====

1928

====

January 17, 1928

My Dear Mr. Vakil, The Guardian has just received a letter from the Brahma Samaj Centenary Committee above the signature of H.C. Sarkar inviting him to attend their Centenary in Calcutta.

Naturally enough he can not attend in person as he is much too busy, but he would want you to make sure that you send your delegates, and thus keep up the most cordial relations between you and the Brahma Samaj. You will, he hopes, make all the necessary arrangements to send your duly authorized delegates in proper time.

The connections with them may prove to be valuable and helpful, and Shoghi Effendi would be much interested to know what would be the outcome.

===================

January 24, 1928

My Dear Mr. Vakil,

I am instructed by our dear Guardian to thank you for your <p42> letter of the 13th instant which he was very glad to receive.

He learns with extreme pleasure of your visit to the Calcutta friends and the bright outlook there -- a thing that must be continued and made good of. He hopes that Dr Simha will in time become an ardent and devoted friend and through him other people of capacity will be drawn in. Perhaps Calcutta will in future turn into a flourishing Baha'i Centre and a place from which can be directed the efforts and services of the friends throughout India and Burma. At any rate you must always be sure that you have Shoghi Effendi's prayers and good wishes to help and strengthen you. Do please assure your dear wife, Miss Sushila and Miss Kapila of our Guardian's many good wishes and the love of the entire family.

With best wishes and the assurance of my continued prayers for you.

Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

[To N. R. Vakil]

May 6, 1928

My Dear Baha'i Brother, I am instructed by our dear Guardian to thank you for your letters of January 26th, February 10th and April 18th.

He was greatly pleased with the news of the work of Prof. Pritam Singh in Karachi and Lahore and he read his well-worded lectures with interest. It gives him immense pleasure to keep in touch with his activities and he prays for the success of his efforts from the bottom of his heart. He is confident that when his plans are carried out and he does travel throughout the whole of India in the interests of the Cause, he will show a record of constant progress and will render valuable services to the Baha'i Faith. Please assure him of our Guardians unfailing prayers and good wishes and also kindly convey to the Amritsar Baha'is the loving greetings of Shoghi Effendi.

Shoghi Effendi is grateful for your arrangements as regards the centenary of the Brahma Samaj. Of course if as you have intimated in your letter, you yourself might be one of the delegates, it would be splendid. <p43>

 

I am sure it will interest you to know that we have had during the Ridvan festivals the first Baha'i pilgrim from Tunis. The representative of the Tunis Assembly is a young man full of hopes and schemes for the future...

The family all join in heartfelt Baha'i greetings to you and Mrs. Vakil -- two dear and devoted and valuable servants of 'Abdu'l-Baha.

My very dear co-worker:

I will specially supplicate, on behalf of my dear brethren in India and Burma, at the Beloved's Shrine, that they may arise with heart and soul and in perfect harmony and understanding to extend the scope of their activities, to consolidate the foundations of their work, to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the fundamentals of the Faith, and to carry out the Beloved's explicit instructions for the establishment of Baha'u'llah's undisputed sovereignty on this earth. May they be richly blessed and guided in their endeavours.

Shoghi

===================

The Secretary, The National Assembly, India, Burma.

June 22, 1928

Dear Friend, I am directed by our dear Guardian to thank you for the two copies of your circular letters which you had kindly sent him.

He was very glad to hear the news of your duly elected National Assembly for whose success, development and usefulness he cherishes the fondest hopes and prays continually.

He was also interested in the proposition that had been brought to the attention of your members. Among the subjects that the Guardian would expect your body to take are a coordination of the various efforts and endeavours throughout India and Burma, an acceleration - and increase in the number of Baha'is and fellow workers, ways and means to attract the attention of Indians from every class and creed to the message and vital dynamic spirit of the Baha'i Faith and as a cumulative and culminating step the find] recognition of the <p44> Baha'i Community as a separate religious organization similar to what has been already achieved in America.

With the Guardian's good wishes for the success of your labours.

 

 

===================

August 2 1,1928

Dear Mr. Vakil, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters both dated July 13th, 1928...

He was also glad to hear of your re-election to the National Assembly for the coming year, and hopes that this year, as previously, you would be guided in your activities in promoting the interests of the Movement.

The news that we obtain from the various parts of the world are most gratifying, for though there are some great problems to solve, yet no one can fail to see the constant realization of those ideals we cherish. May that day soon dawn when the source of this spiritual power, which is permeating the whole of society, will be appreciated and venerated.

Please convey to all the friends, specially the members of your family, Shoghi Effendi's loving greetings.

With the assurance of my continued prayers for the success of the Baha'i' representatives attending the Centenary Congress and with my appreciation of your unsparing efforts in that connexion. I am your true and grateful brother.

Shoghi

===================

 

October 10, 1928

Dear Mr. Vakil,

This is to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated 7-9-28, reporting the events of the Brahma Samaj Centenary gathering to Shoghi Effendi. Such meetings are wonderful occasions for showing the spirit and teachings of the Cause... Shoghi Effendi's hope is that at such Conventions and gatherings the friends would present the teachings to persons otherwise inaccessible for individual contact. <p45>

Please convey to Mrs. Vakil and all the friends Shoghi Effendi's hearty greetings.

My dear co-worker:

I heartily approve the project of a Baha'i Convention and would leave the choice of the site and other arrangements to the National Assembly. The Cause in various countries is making a great headway and the reference of the case of the Baghdad Houses to the Mandate's Commission of the League of Nations is a greet step forward. Do not lose heart and persevere in your splendid labours. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

November 15, 1928

My Dear Mr. Vakil, I am directed by our Guardian to thank you for your letter of November 2nd with enclosures.

He was glad to hear from you and he has read with deep satisfaction the account of the good work of Seyed Ilmi in Burma Shoghi Effendi has always wondered as to the reasons why despite so many years of effort and activity, the Cause has not spread more rapidly either in India or Burma, perhaps the latter can be more proud of its results. He would in fact appreciate your own personal opinion, although God's ways are often hard to understand. We have lately had a remarkable illustration in Turkey where the Baha'is were an insignificant little group. Suddenly accused of constituting a secret political society the members of the National Spiritual Assembly in Constantinople and the Spiritual Assembly in Smyrna were dragged to the police and kept for one night pending the formation of the Board of Inquiry. The next day the court sat and the president of the National Spiritual Assembly was cross-examined for eight consecutive hours. The result was that they were all dismissed, with the members of the Court deeply influenced and impressed by the teachings and principles which the President baldly and eloquently described. They asked for literature and many of them carried from that session much food for thought. Furthermore every paper in Turkey filled its freest pages with the incident and a repetition of the teachings and good many a <p46> Turk heard of the Cause in a way that Baha'is could never bring about.

Will India have a similar awakening and will it suddenly arise to the significance of the message?

My dear a precious co-worker.

I trust and pray that circumstances will be favourable and the means provided for the holding of a Baha'i Convention this year representative of India and Burma. A closer touch and more frequent interchange of thought among the Baha'i centres in those lands are absolutely essential. I am sending you a copy of the recently issued "Baha'i World", and wish you to urge the National and Local Assemblies in India and Burma to order as many copies as they possibly can from America for distribution among the enlightened public as well as a means for the assistance and encouragement of the Baha'i Publishing Committee in New York which is doing excellent service at the present time. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

November 26, 1928

Dear Mr. Vakil, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated November 9th. He will always remember you and the other friends of India in his prayers, and implore for you Divine guidance and help. He hopes that the Convention for which you are preparing will turn out to be a very important move in the history of the Cause in India and lead to great and wonderful results..

My dear and valued co-worker,

I am deeply touched by the repeated evidences of your self-sacrificing love for our beloved Cause. I will continue to supplicate our Beloved to bestow upon yogi His manifold and richest blessings that you may fulfil in every field of activity your most cherished desire. I trust that through the efforts of the National Assembly a great impetus may be given to the spread of the Cause this winter in India and Burma, and that the friends <p47> may increasingly realize the sacredness and pressing nature of their obligations and responsibilities..

Wishing you happiness and success from all my heart. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

December 11, 1928

Dear Mr. Valid, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge be receipt of your very kind letter dated November 30th 1928.

He will surely join in your prayers that the coming Convention may bear two principal fruit. First, that it may re-establish among the friends in India and Burma that sense of Jove and harmony which is the prerequisite for true service in the Cause. Without this internal unity and peace we cannot hope to preach the gospel of love among mankind. Then we all hope that the Convention will turn out to be a milestone in the history of the progress of the Cause as far as its teaching work is concerned. We have so few Baha'i in India, if we take into consideration the number of the inhabitants there, the number of years that the Baha'i Movement has been existing there, and the freedom that its adepts have enjoyed. It is surely high time that a real move be made.

Shoghi Effendi would be very glad to welcome you and your family to Haifa. He hopes, however, that you would so arrange your trip as to be here the beginning pr middle of May for after that the climate of Haifa becomes too hot and unhealthy. Moreover Shoghi Effendi would be here. As to the course of your trip here, perhaps you could find out yourself which way gets you here sooner. Maybe you could leave your trip to Persia on your way back.

My dear co-worker:

I am delighted with the prospect of your journey to the Holy Land as I have always cherished deep-felt sentiment of affection for you and your dear family. I will specially supplicate at the Sacred Threshold for the success of the forthcoming Baha'i Convention, and I trust it will be fully and widely represented by the divers elements that constitute the <p48> Baha'i community in _India and Burma_. May the spirit of Baha'u'llah guide and bless your deliberations and may unprecedented results be achieved by the assembled delegates. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

December 19, 1928

My dear Mr. Vakil, I am directed by our Guardian to thank you for your letter of December 7th.

Although I had never meant that my enquiry from you as to the reasons of lack of progress of the Cause in India, should be asked from every individual Baha'i, yet I am sure, our Guardian will be interested to know the ideas and opinions of various sections of the friends both in India and Burma.

The expression of our views in written form sometimes helps us to think better and deeper and often brings various matters into proper perspective, enabling us thereby to disregard what is extraneous and unimportant. The answers to the question put forth, would, I feel, be extremely valuable to the National Spiritual Assembly in India, and with the proper backing, respect and support of the entire friends, they should not lose a minute in an endeavour to remedy and inspire what ought not and what should be done, in an effort to spread the Cause.

Good faith in Local and National Assemblies is something that the friends must learn everywhere, if they are to follow at all the teachings of the Master, but these Assemblies must also endeavour to inspire confidence and help remove misunderstandings.

Assuring you always of the Guardian's good wishes and prayers and with greetings to your wife and children.

My dear co-worker:

I trust that the forthcoming Convention will remedy most if not all the present deficiencies in the Cause and lend an unprecedented impetus to the progress of the Faith. The Teaching work should be stressed as it is the Fountainhead from which all future blessings will flow. We must first and foremost add to our small numbers, and introduce fresh blood into <p49> the organic life of the community. I will specially supplicate this bounty for the representative delegates to be assembled at Convention this year.

Your true brother, Shoghi

=================== <p51>

====

1929

====

 

February 12, 1929

Dear Mr. Vakil, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated January 11th 1929.

He was very glad to bear of the success of the Convention. He hopes that such gatherings will become yearly and, like in other countries, lead to a better understanding among the friends. It is surely true that as the Cause progresses differences will more and more arise. So unless there be a meeting place where the different views are thrashed true unity of purpose and activity will not be obtained...

Shoghi Effendi wishes you to express his loving greetings to the members of your family as well as to the Baha'is. He hopes that when you come you will have some good news to bring with you.

My dear and precious co-worker:

Your subsequent letter dated January 24 has also reached me. I will specially remember our dear and valued co-worker Prof Pritam Singh when I visit the sacred Shrine that the spirit of Baha'u'llah may inspire, guide and sustain him in his great task. Regarding your last Convention <p52> and the non-participation of the Burma delegates, I feel that the utmost effort must be exerted during the coming elections in April to elect those who are best fitted for this supreme and responsible position, and once elected, resignation is not to be accepted. The members must meet and consult in person. Persia is preparing for the holding of national elections, and for India and Burma to revert to a system that is being abandoned by the Persian believers would be a decidedly retrograde step. We must at all costs maintain and strengthen the unity of the National Assembly.

Everything must be subordinated to this end. I will supplicate our Beloved to enable you to achieve His purpose.

Shoghi

===================

March 2,1929

My Dear Mr. Vakil, I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your welcome letter of February 8th with enclosures, and he will be pleased to read the paper clippings with pleasure.

It gives him much satisfaction to learn of your proposed journey with your family to Haifa this May, and he wishes me to assure you of his heartfelt welcome...

He sincerely trusts and prays that as a dear and devoted brother and fellow worker, our beloved Master may always bless your efforts richly both spiritually and materially and may render you a great and growing asset to the progress of the Baha'i Faith in India.

My dear and valued co-worker:

I trust that by now a better understanding and more substantial cooperation has been attained by the friends of India and Burma. It is for the delegates who are to be chosen by them this year, to elect those whom they think are best qualified for membership of the National Spiritual Assembly, and once elected, the unity and efficiency of this body must at any cost be maintained. I cannot but pray that they may be guided in this choice, and discharge honorably their functions. For yourself I shall offer with a grateful heart my fervent prayers. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p53>

 

March 9, 1929

My Dear Mr. Vakil,

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of February 22nd with enclosures. He was much pleased with the letter of Prof. Pritam Singh and his valued endeavours at the Conference on Religions, and he wishes you please to convey to him the expression of his sincere gratitude and appreciation and the assurance of his prayers.

Shoghi Effendi is much pleased with the prospect of your visit with Mrs. Vakil and children this spring, and aside from the pleasure of renewing his personal friendship with you, he welcomes the opportunity of discussing with you the best means for the progress of the work in India.

My dear and precious co-worker:

Please assure our dear Pritam Singh of my heartfelt appreciation, profound affection and fervent prayers. His distinguished and constant services have endeared him to is all, and I pray that he may render still more distinguished services in the days to come. I will also supplicate for you that you may increasingly contribute, by your self-sacrificing labours, to the progress and consolidation of the Faith both in India and Burma. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

March 12, 1929

My Dear Mr. Abbasally,

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for the copy of your circular which you sent him.

He read it with pleasure and he wishes me to assure you as much as ever of his increasing interest in the permanent establishment and development of "Kaukab-i-Hind", whose potential influence in the spread of the teachings in India and Burma, he feels he cannot overrate. <p54>

As an evidence of his hopes for your journal, he is sending enclosed the sum of £9/ - as his contribution towards its upkeep.

With the expression of his warm appreciation of your efforts.

===================

APRIL 4, 1929

CABLE FOLLOWING SECRETARY GENERAL LEAGUE QE

NATIONS: ADHERENTS OF BAHA'I FAITH IN INDIA AND

BURMA ASSOCIATE THEMSELVES WITH BAHA'IS WORLD

OVER IN ACKNOWLEDGING THE RECOGNITION BY THE

LEAGUE OF THE JUSTICE OF BAHA'I CASE IN IRAQ.

SHOGHI

===================

June 20, 1929

My Dear Mr. Badri,

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your communication of June 7th and to express his pleasure over the results of your National Assembly elections. It is his sincere hope and desire to seethe newly elected National Assembly, during its term of office, infuse a new and fresh spirit into every Baha'i activity both in India and Burma, and while establishing perfect unity and harmony within its own ranks and the entire body of the believers, should take vigorous steps to teach the Cause and to establish a progressive and representative Baha'i community in both countries.

Please assure them one and all of the Guardian's affection and prayers.

With the assurance of my keen appreciation of your sustained and unsparing efforts for the spread of our beloved Cause, and of my continued prayers in your behalf. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================<p55>

 

July 8, 1929

My Dear Mr. Badri, I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of June 26th with enclosures.

He wishes me to express his satisfaction over the results of your election and of his appreciation of your endeavours to fulfil the various duties of the secretary despite lack of sufficient leisure and other difficulties.

With regard to your proposal that the National Spiritual Assembly should meet once in Burma and once in India, the Guardian wishes me to record his hearty approval and to even suggest that if it should be feasible they should meet even more often than that in both places.

It is his sincere hope that in this manner and through the individual effort of every member the misunderstandings existing between India and Burma will be wiped out altogether and that a fresh start will be made in a spirit of true and whole-hearted accord.

With the assurance of my keen appreciation of your efforts and of my fervent and continued prayers in your behalf. Your true brother

Shoghi

===================

August 20, 1929

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated July 18th 1929, and to assure you and the members of your family, of his earnest love and prayers.

He hopes that the new National Assembly will do its utmost to bring about unity in its group and among the friends. For, as he has often stated, the work of the Cause will remain cramped unless that unity is obtained. The petty differences that do exist are the result of misunderstandings and these can surely be eliminated.

We enjoyed meeting Dr. Kaushal and we hope that from now on he will play an active part in spreading the Cause. His training is surely a great asset. He has promised us much and we hope he will fulfil them... <p56>

 

With the assurance of my brotherly love and constant prayers for you and your dear family. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

[To Mr. N. Badri]

September 19, 1929

My Dear Friend, I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of August 15th and for copies of letters sent on August 10th.

Your frank expression of the situation in India and your energetic desire to see things moving after years of practical stagnation, is gladly welcomed by the Guardian, and he is refreshed to see a feeling of dissatisfaction with present conditions and a desire for fresh endeavours along enlightened lines, evident among a good many of our friends in India and Burma.

It is specially gratifying to see you realize the fact that when the world has developed and been enlightened enough through the unseen Powers of the Almighty, to be led to the teachings and spirit of the Cause, it will be our shameful task to go round proclaiming such principles as we were taught so many years before and none of which we had lived up to. Concerning Huquq, the Guardian wishes me to inform you that at present it is not obligatory for the friends to pay, but that they should be urged to contribute to the local and national funds.

With the assurance of my best wishes and prayers for yeti. Yost true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p57>

URGENT

The National Spiritual Assembly of India and Burma.

December 15 1929

Dear Friends,

I write in behalf of the Guardian to remind you that the next issue of the "Baha'i World" will soon appear and its editors are already busy compiling material. He has been asked by the editors in America to request you please to make a special effort to contribute as much material as you possibly can in the form of photographs, reports, accounts, and individual articles; and to send them as soon as possible to America in order that a work which the Guardian considers our foremost Baha'i publication in the world, may be as representative of the many countries and specially Eastern peoples as we would all wish it to be.

He would also want you to encourage contributions in the form of well-written and interesting articles by all those of the friends whom you think capable.

This work will be presented in the final form for the Guardian's approval sometime next March, so he would wish your material to reach the Guardian a month before that date...

===================

December 17, 1929

My Dear Mr. Vakil,

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your good letters of September 4th, November 12th and 29th with enclosures.

He was very glad that your National Spiritual Assembly meeting in Bombay was such a success and he is extremely happy of your decision to hold your next meeting in Burma, for he shares your hope that by meeting the friends in Burma and ventilating in a spirit of goodwill all past misunderstandings and problems, a new and enduring unity of purpose and effort may prevail and the Cause may make afresh start. He sincerely hopes that the illness of Seyed Jenab Ali of which he has just heard by wire will not prevent him from attending your meetings.

He is much gratified of your efforts in connection with an official recognition of the Faith and its laws by the Government. When <p58> that is accomplished it will mark a great and material progress of the Cause in India and Burma.

Shoghi Effendi himself and the family all join in loving greetings to yourself, your wife and the children.

My dear and precious co-worker:

I trust and pray that your gathering in Rangoon may prove a landmark n the history of the Cause in India and Burma and may lend afresh and unprecedented impetus to the onward march of the Cause in those lands. May the Beloved strengthen you and guide you and enable you to consolidate the foundations of His Faith. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

The proposed Declaration of Trust and By-laws of the National Assembly of India and Burma should follow closely, in subject matter, arrangement and form, the text of the American Baha'i Constitution. I urge you to examine it carefully before you draw your own.

Shoghi

===================

 

December 19, 1929

Dear Friend Mr. Badri,

 

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of October 17th which he read with interest.

He was pleased with your many endeavours and activities and he hopes that they will lend to good results.

He corroborates your decision with regard to "Kaukab".

It is not necessary for any National Spiritual Assembly to send a delegate to the Religion's Peace Conference as Mr. Mills represents all the friends at their council.

With regard to the American teacher for Bombay, Shoghi Effendi will inform you when a suitable person is found...

With the assurance of my deep appreciation of your strenuous endeavors in the path of service and of my fervent prayers for your success and spiritual advancement. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p59>

 

January 6, 1930

My Dear Mr. Vakil, I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of December 14th with enclosures.

He was very sorry to learn of the illness of Seyed Jenab Ali and since the receipt of your letter he has been extremely grieved to learn of his passing. His sudden departure throws a shadow of gloom upon all of us here and in India and while Burma loses a distinguished and truly earnest Baha'i leader, it must be specially unfortunate to you that just at a time when you were considering and preparing the ground for Government Recognition and a temporary consideration of Baha'i laws, you were deprived of his valued cooperation. The Cause in India is as yet in such a tender age that we can ill afford the loss of those few that keep the torch aflame.

The Guardian was much touched by your anxiety over the health of the family and also by your generous contribution. Everybody is happy and well and while Shoghi Effendi himself was kept in bed for about a month, he is quite recovered now and actively at work.

Please find enclosed receipt for your contribution. <p60>

With Shoghi Effendi's affectionate regards to you and your dear ones and with loving greetings from the family.

My dear co-worker:

The news of the passing of our dear and able friend and collaborator Seyed Jenab Ali has bright profound sorrow to our hearts. He leaves a great gap behind him. I hope that the friends far from feeling disheartened and discouraged at such a great loss will arise and redouble their efforts in order to compensate for the loss which they have sustained, Kindly assure his relatives of my deep grief and my prayers for his departed soul. Your affectionate brother,

Shoghi

===================

March 1, 1930

My Dear Mr. Badri, I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of February 19th with enclosures.

He was very glad to know of the work you had done and he appreciates your suggestions with regard to a permanent secretariat.

Of course these are matters that should be mainly decided by the National Spiritual Assembly itself.

He was much grieved to know of the passing of your father in Shiraz some months ago and he wishes me to convey to you the expression of his deep felt sympathy. It would naturally be unfortunate if upon your graduation you were to leave India and the work there, but he understands perfectly how necessary and urgent your return to Shiraz might be.

Miss Root is at present in Tihran and she does not know just how long she will stay, but surely before leaving for India she would inform you of her plans in time.

It is such a pity that Mr. Vakil is unwell. He is a man we cannot spare just as the passing of Seyed Jenab Ali leaves a serious gap in Burma.

The Guardian is well and he wishes me to assure you of his affection and prayers. <p61>

My dear co-worker:

Miss Root will soon be with you, and I trust her visit may lend afresh impetus to your work of consolidation and spread of the Cause. I will continue to pray for your efforts and activities from the depths of my heart. Be not disheartened. Persevere in your labours, and rest assured that the Beloved will richly reward those who stand firm in the Faith, and those who persevere in their endeavours. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

March 21, 1930

My Dear Mr. Vakil,

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of February 22nd with an article by Prof. Pritam Singh enclosed. He was very sorry indeed to learn that you had been unwell and he sincerely trusts that by now you have fully recovered and are again actively engaged in your highly valuable work.

Prof. Pritam Singh's article is being sent forthwith to the editorial committee in America where all the material is collected...

With the assurance of Shoghi Effendi's affection and prayers.

My dear and precious co-worker:

 

Your previous letter of January 4 has also reached me. I grieve to hear of your illness. I urge you to take the greatest care of yourself as the Cause can not spare such a devoted, energetic and enlightened worker as yourself I will pray for your recovery from the depths of my heart. Miss Root will soon be with you. I urge you to do all you can to make her visit fruitful and profitable. She is a great soul. I pray that she may lend a fresh and much needed impetus to the devoted labours of the friends in India. May the Beloved guide you, bless you, cheer you, and sustain you in your great yet difficult task. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p62>

 

March 29, 1930

My dear Siyyid Mustafa, I am directed by the Guardian to express his grateful appreciation for your letter of March 1st with the volume containing copies of the tablets revealed to friends in Burma by the Master and Baha'u'llah.

In accomplishing this task you have rendered a most valued and permanent service to the Cause in Burma and posterity will owe you a debt of gratitude very hard to repay.

Furthermore this compilation shall be of indispensable value and use to the Guardian and to all international bodies that may meet in Haifa whether in the distant or near future. You are quite aware, of course, with the fashion in which both Baha'u'llah and the Master gave some of their most important teachings as part of their tablets addressed to far away friends. Hence the necessity of such compilations throughout the world.

Please convey to the Mandalay Spiritual Assembly under whose supervision and with whose assistance the work was undertaken, the expression of Shoghi Effendi's gratitude. Also to its Secretary Miss Hla Hla who had countersigned the compilation. With the assurance of Shoghi Effendi's affection and prayers for you all.

My dear and precious co-worker.

Your noble, continued and devoted endeavours are engraved upon my heart. I deeply appreciate this latest evidence of your painstaking endeavours. I will continue to pray for you and your dear spiritual children in Burma from the depths of my heart. You certainly occupy a warm and abiding place in my heart. May the Beloved grant you health and strength to consummate your historic labors for His Cause. Your affectionate brother,

Shoghi

===================

April 26, 1930

My Dear Mr. Vakil, Shoghi Effendi was so glad to receive your letter of April 18th and to learn of your improved health and that you had gone to <p63> Mt. Abu for a vacation. You should take good care of yourself for the work that awaits you.

Miss Root has been delayed by the enthusiastic reception she has received in Persia, and she is now planning to visit southern and eastern Persia where she has not yet been. We hope her visit to India will prove of some value in attracting the attention of the intelligent classes among the non-Baha'is, but perhaps the political agitation will entirely defeat that purpose at the present time.

We have just celebrated Ridvan and Shoghi Effendi sends you his warmest greetings.

With the assurance of my continued prayers for your good health, happiness and success. Your affectionate brother,

Shoghi

===================

May 6, 1930

My dear Siyyid Mustafa, I am directed by Shoghi Effendi to acknowledge receipt of the pamphlet and reports which you were so kind as to send him.

He also wishes me to take this opportunity and assure you how much he appreciates and with what deep feelings of pleasure and gratitude he has always viewed your earnest and sustained endeavours for the progress of the Message of Baha'u'llah in Burma.

It has often happened in the history of the Cause that those who were once among the leaders and in the forefront of Baha'i activity grew in their old age lukewarm and inactive not to say sceptical. It is rare to find people like yourself to keep a course steady with single-minded devotion and carry into your old age the faith and enthusiasm of youth tempered to be sure by the experience of years. Your presence in Burma has always been an asset to the Faith and the Guardian sincerely trusts and prays that with youthful optimism and open-mindedness you will inspire your fellow-workers with the glory of your task so that after yourself you will leave a good work conscientiously and well done.

With the assurance of his affectionate regards. <p64>

===================

May 7,1930

My dear Siyyid Mustafa, I had the pleasure of writing you a letter last night and I am now directed again by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of April 14th with the comprehensive report of the Baha'i census which you were so good as to send him.

He appreciates this work immensely and it will be a very valuable data for any consideration of the Cause in Burma. He hopes to make good use of it. Regarding the most generous wish of your dear wife and yours to leave some property after yourselves for the progress of the Faith and in the name of the Guardian, I will say nothing as I am sure he will wish to append a few words himself. But I am sure he wants me to express his grateful appreciation of the spirit that animates your offer.

The life of both of you has been rich in service rendered to the Cause of Baha'u'llah and what a happy blessing that even after you, you may leave your little share for the progress of the Faith.

With the assurance of his affection and prayers for your wife and yourself.

===================

 

My dear and precious co-worker:

I deeply appreciate your noble sentiments, your self-sacrificing efforts, your pioneer services and your glorious steadfastness in the path. I wish to congratulate you on your union with the handmaid of God, Halimeh, who I trust will in close collaboration with you render inestimable services to the Faith. The packages you sent me have all arrived, and will be preserved in your name in the archives of the Holy Land. As to your desire to offer your property to the Cause and to transfer it to my name as a trust, I deeply appreciate your generous offer, but wish you and your dear wife to benefit from its rent so long as you are living and to transfer it in later years; I will supplicate for both of you from the depths of my heart at His Holy Shrine. Rest assured.

Shoghi

=================== <p65>

 

July 4, 1930

Dear Mr. Vakil.

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated June 14th 1930.

He was very glad to hear of the activities of Miss Martha Root in India and hopes that they will all bear some wonderful fruits for the progress of the Cause in India. It is sure that with the existence of the present political unrest in that country few are ready to pay any attention to religious matters, but among the very intelligent people there are undoubtedly people whose vision extends further than the present difficulties and desire a spiritual rebirth for that much divided and troubled nation. To these the Baha'i teachings should undoubtedly present a much desired reform movement. Anyhow, Shoghi Effendi hopes that with the help of Miss Root you have been able to approach such eminent persons and have sown in their hearts the seed of faith.

In closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's prayers and loving greetings, and please extend the same to the members of your family.

With the assurance of my continued prayers for the success of your persevering efforts and unsparing endeavors for the spread of our beloved Faith. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

September 19, 1930

Dear Mr. Vakil, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated August 8th 1930 as well as the enclosed balance sheet of the National Spiritual Assembly.

Concerning the trip of Miss Martha Root, we have already heard about her activities from many sources. Shoghi Effendi sincerely hopes that the National Assembly will undertake such measures as would keep up the work and produce some tangible result from her visit. It is very important to follow up the work that she started, and keep in touch with the people she has been able to interest. <p66>

 

In closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's prayers and extend his greetings to you and the members of your family.

With the assurance of my deep appreciation of your many and highly successful endeavours in connexion with the visit of miss Root and of my fervent and loving prayers for your own happiness and spiritual advancement. Your true brother;

Shoghi

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

September 20, 1930

Dear Baha'i Brother, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated July 21st, 1930. He is always appreciative of the services you render to the Cause in bringing in new souls and safeguarding its interests. From all his heart he will pray for your success and implore for you Divine guidance and help.

He sincerely hopes that through the constant efforts of you as well as of the other friends great successes will be achieved. India and Burma, lands of many languages and religions, where religious and racial prejudice are at their worst-are in great need for the unifying word of God. They need the pervading spirit of Baha'u'llah to be introduced into their millions of homes and bring them peace as well as social and spiritual upliftment.

This tremendous task is entrusted to the few Baha'is that are resident in that land. May they unitedly rise for the fulfilment of their sacred duty and thereby gain Divine favour.

In closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's loving greeting and ask you to express the same to all the friends...

===================

Alias Pali Ama-Nia Niyasing c/o Seyed Mustafa [Burma]

September 20, 1930

Dear Baha'i Sister, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your very kind letter dated July 27th 1930. He hopes that, in fulfilment of <p67> your highest aspirations, you will become an active servant of the Cause and bring in turn many souls into an acceptance of the teachings.

Teaching the principles of the Movement is considered this day the most meritorious of acts for it helps to drive away the irreligion that at present pervades society and endangers its very life and existence.

Shoghi Effendi will surely remember you in his prayers and ask for you divine guidance and help.

With the assurance of my loving prayers for your happiness, your success, and spiritual advancement. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

November 10, 1930

Dear Mr. Pritam Singh,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated October 8th 1930.

Concerning Baha'i representation at the All Asian Women's Conference; this is undoubtedly a most commendable thing to do, specially as the Cause has so much concerning the position of women in society. Shoghi Effendi hopes that the National Assembly will do its best to win the admiration of all the assembled delegates for the teachings of the Cause along that line. We should always take such opportunities that present themselves. Maybe we would succeed to render some service to society and alleviate its ills.

Assuring you of Shoghi Effendi's best wishes and loving greetings.

With the assurance of my deepest appreciation of your continued and much valued endeavours, and of my fervent prayers for your success and spiritual advancement. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p68>

 

====

1931

====

[To The Local Spiritual Assembly Of Mandalay]

January 3, 1931

Dear Friends,

 

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your joint letter dated December 15th 1930 as well as the "Trust Deed" for the property you have transferred to his name. He is deeply appreciative of the services you have been constantly rendering to the Cause and the sacrifices you are offering in furthering its interests. May God in His infinite bounty fully repay your endeavours.

Shoghi Effendi is quite well and as usual busy in performing his many duties. The successes that are being constantly achieved in spreading the Cause and furthering its interests, however, are fully repaying his labours and promising wonderful results for the near future. In these days the place where the greatest amount of work is being achieved is Persia, where the government is liberal and accords to the friends all the freedom they desire to spread the message.

In closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's loving greetings and best wishes for the success of your work in serving the Faith. <p69>

 

 

My dear precious co-worker:

The deed has reached safely the Holy Land and stands as a further evidence of your exemplary devotion to the Cause of God. I will continue to pray for you, your dear wife, and the precious friends in Burma from all my heart. You are often in my thoughts and your distinguished services, past and present, cheer and hearten me in my task. Rest assured and be happy, and always remember that my prayers will continue to be offered in your behalf at the Holy Shrines. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

January 7, 1931

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters dated December 26th and 27th 1930 as well as the enclosed letter of Prof. Pritam Singh.

Shoghi Effendi hopes that with the combined efforts of the friends and the Master's infinite mercy a great success will be achieved at both of the Conferences. While visiting the Blessed Shrines he will remember the delegates and ask for them divine guidance. If presented properly the position of women in the Baha'i teachings will surely attract much attention, for it is not only legal but also spiritual and educational. Our ideals are so high and at the same time so practicable that all other views will fall short if compared to them. Shoghi Effendi hopes that many will be able to attend these conferences and render all the assistance they possibly can.

In closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's prayers and best wishes for your success.

My dear co-worker:

I trust that the message sent on behalf if of the Greatest Holy Leaf and myself has reached in time and been conveyed to the members of the conference. May the almighty Hand of Baha'u'llah guide your steps and sustain your efforts in the manifold services you are rendering to the Cause. I will continue to pray for you from the depths of my heart. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p70>

January 14, 1931

My Dear Mr. Vakil,

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of January 2nd.

He is pleased to hear of the receipt of his cablegram addressed to the Asian Women's Conference through Prof. Pritam Singh and he sincerely hopes that the Baha'i members attending will take an active share in its proceedings and will thereby be putting to active effect the teachings of Baha'u'llah. Various and innumerable contacts will naturally be made and the effort should be to take advantage of this unique opportunity...

With the assurance of my loving prayers for you and your dear family. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

June 12, 1931

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated May 25th 1931 as well as the enclosed letter of the Kunjangoon Spiritual Assembly.

He was deeply grieved of the passing away of Jenabe Jamsheed Khodadad who was one of the true and experienced Baha'is, who during his life rendered many services to the Cause in Bombay.

He sincerely hopes that while we are losing these staunch and capable souls, others are coming forward to occupy their place and assume the responsibilities of this constantly developing Movement.

In his moments of prayer and meditation at the Shrines, Shoghi Effendi will think of the friends in India and ask for them divine guidance and help.

Please convey his greetings to the members of your family. He hopes that they are all well and that your children are developing in the footsteps of their father, and growing to be servants of the Cause. <p71>

 

My dear and precious co-worker:

I have lately received packages of silk and other kinds of cloth which, as they have been mailed from Surat, I presume have been sent by you. I have used them partly as furnishings for the Mansion of Baha'u'llah which we have recently restored and furnished and which now serves as both a shrine and a pilgrim house. Your continued and devoted endeavours and services in so many fields of Baha'i activity are a constant source of joy and inspiration to me in my work and my prayers will continue to be offered at the Holy Shrines for your welfare, your happiness, and spiritual advancement.

Shoghi

[To N.R. Vakil]

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Your letter of 22/ 6/1931 was received and the Guardian charged me to extend to you his deepest thanks. He was very pleased to learn that your health had been improved and he fondly hopes that this recovery will give you the opportunity to continue your teaching activities as zealously as before.

The three parcels of cloth which you have kindly sent for the Guardian were duly received and he accepted your gift with great pleasure.

Shoghi Effendi is as usual extremely busy. But his health is in a very good condition and he is anxiously awaiting the news of further achievements for the spreading of the Cause. The conditions in India are now quite favourable, but what the Baha'is need is a group of well educated and seriously minded people who would spend a good deal of their time in lecturing before large audiences and in writing and distributing books and pamphlets-we are in need of such people- they are, as you know very well, very few in number and the Guardian hopes that you will do your utmost to organize or to encourage and assist the formation of such a group.

Assuring you of the Guardian's best wishes for your family and for yourself. <p72>

 

My dear and precious co-worker:

May I add a few words in person and assure you again of my deep felt appreciation of your valuable gift, most of which I have utilized for Baha'u'llah's newly restored Mansion at Bahji. Your manifold, inspiring and devoted services are a source of the greatest inspiration to me in my work. I will continue to pray for you and yours from the depths of my heart. Rest assured and be always hopeful The Master will surely bless your splendid work

Shoghi

===================

 

[To N.R. Vakil]

August 29, 1931

Dear Baha'i Brother,

I am charged by Shoghi Effendi to acknowledge on his behalf the receipt of your letter dated July 31st, 1931 and to extend to you his loving appreciation of your noble and heroic endeavours to promote and consolidate the interests of the Faith in your land.

The Guardian has also received the account of the National Fund of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of India and Burma and he read it with careful attention and deep interest.

He was very pleased to learn with what self sacrificing efforts our Indian brothers are toiling and he fervently prays that the Almighty may continually shower His blessings upon them that they may be able to spread the Cause in the most rapid and in the most efficient way.

Shoghi Effendi was particularly rejoiced at the perseverance with which our talented Baha'i brother, Dr Pritam Singh, is carrying on his work in connection with the publication of the "Baha'i Weekly", copies of which he has received and read with deepest interest.

You may have heard of the projected publication by the Baha'i Publishing Committee of the book entitled "The Dawn Breakers", being Nabil's narrative of the early days of the Baha'i revelation, recently translated by the Guardian. It is hoped that the Indian friends will order a few copies of this highly valuable book and that they will send a few others to some of the leading libraries in India and Burma. <p73>

With the renewed assurance of the Guardian's best wishes for your family and for yourself and of the continued and fervent prayers for your spiritual and material advance and success.

Dear and esteemed co-worker:

My prayers will continue to be offered on behalf of the loyal and self-sacrificing friends in India and Burma. Prof Pritam Singh's notable and ever increasing share in the administrative, literary, and financial activities of the Faith in that land is a source of genuine and constant satisfaction. I would specially request your Assembly to prepare a comprehensive and detailed report on the activities and progress of the Faith in India and Burma during the last two years, 1930-32, for inclusion in the forthcoming issue of the "Baha'i World". Will you kindly forward the report to Mr. Horace Holley as soon as possible, as he has been charged to draw up a survey similar to the one published in the last volume. I would also urge the friends in India and Burma to order as many copies of the "Dawn Breakers" as they possibly can as I regard its circulation of vital importance to the Cause. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

September 17, 1931

Dear Baha'i Brother,

I am directed by Shoghi Effendi to acknowledge on his behalf the receipt of your letter dated July 27th, 1931...

The Guardian was greatly rejoiced to hear of you again and to see with what enthusiasm and zeal you are consolidating the interests of the Faith in Burma.

I need not assure you of the brightest hopes he cherishes for your future work in that land. Your long and highly valuable efforts in the past are a sufficient witness to the bounties which God is continually showering upon you.

Regarding the series of your articles on the early beginnings of the Movement in India and Burma published in the "Baha'i Magazine", Shoghi Effendi strongly feels that they will constitute a valuable contribution to the history of the Cause in that land and he <p74> wishes me to urge you to persevere in this work.

You may have heard of the projected publication by the Publishing Committee of the National Assembly of the United States of a monumental and most authoritative history on the early beginnings of the Movement recently translated by our Guardian and it is hoped that the friends will not fail to purchase one copy of this history as it will assuredly serve to deepen their knowledge and to strengthen their faith in the Cause.

With Shoghi Effendi's best wishes for yourself and for all the believers in Mandalay.

Dearly beloved co-worker:

I cannot refrain from adding a few words in person as a token of my lively admiration for your exemplary efforts in the service of the Cause.

Your splendid record of unflinching service, animated by a faith and zeal that none can surpass, constitutes an asset than I greatly prize and value. I will continue to pray for you from the depths of my heart that the Beloved may bless richly your work, may guide your steps, cheer your heart, and sustain your high and self-sacrificing endeavours. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

December 5, 1931

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated November 14th 1931 which accompanied a file on the Baha'i feasts. As he is now compiling the fourth volume of the "Baha'i World" and he will have to reconsider the correctness of the Calendar found there, the information you have sent him will be most valuable. You could refer to that book when out, to know his real decision on the subject. It is surely very important to have all the facts and bring to light all the Tablets that refer to the subject before the problems that revolve around the Baha'i Calendar can be solved.

Shoghi Effendi wishes me also to extend to you his love and best wishes and express his hope that you are well and as usual active in teaching the Cause. These days that political and economic difficulties are reaching a climax, and millions of people are perishing <p75> through suffering, we should redouble our energy and work with even greater zeal. Western civilization will crumble down and destroy with it the already poverty stricken East, if the message of Baha'u'llah is not established throughout the world and its divine remedy not applied to the sick body of society.

In his moments of prayer and meditation at the Blessed Shrines, Shoghi Effendi always thinks of the friends who are striving to teach the Cause throughout the world and ask for them divine guidance and help.

Dear and valued co-worker:

Your pioneer services so devotedly and conscientiously rendered constitute a shining page of Baha'i history and will be gratefully remembered by future Baha'i generations. Your exemplary services will continue to inspire future workers in the Cause and their memory will cheer their hearts and reinforce their endeavours. You have won for yourself a warm and abiding place in all hearts that throb with the love of Baha'u'llah. Be assured, and persevere in your glorious task. Your true brother,

Shoghi <p76>

===================

 

====

1932

====

January 7,1932

Dear Prof. Pritam Singh,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to drop you these few lines to draw your attention to a general principle he has laid down for all the Baha'i periodicals, namely that they should be very careful in selecting the advertisements they accept to publish. It should be highly dignified, such as books for example, otherwise it would detract from the dignity of the periodical itself. This may cause certain difficulty in financially establishing the paper, but we should face the sacrifice and not endanger the prestige of our publications. He wishes you to take note of this general recommendation in accepting advertisements for the "Baha'i Weekly".

Furthermore, he wishes me to inform you, that he has decided to put your name among the editors of the "Baha'i World", as representing India and Burma. He thinks that you are best fitted to keep in touch with the Baha'i World Committee, and supply them all the material that refers to India and Burma. Among the duties that will devolve upon you is to arrange a report covering the activities of the friends for the previous two years, the address of the different <p77> Assemblies, gathering of photographs of groups, and the name of any book published in India-whether English, Urdu, or otherwise. In short, you will have to find what can be contributed by India and Burma as material for any of the different sections of the "Baha'i World".

In closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's loving greetings and prayers and express his deep appreciation for the wonderful services you are rendering to the spread of the Cause.

===================

 

February 11, 1932

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated January 29th 1932 as well as the two enclosed drafts.

Please find enclosed a receipt for the same. He was very sad to hear that you have not been well, for it undoubtedly caused much anxiety to the members of your family and also kept you from your work. The Cause cannot afford seeing its fine servants ill and handicapped. Please take great care of yourself that the attack may not recur.

Mrs. Ransom Kehler has informed us of her trip to India. Shoghi Effendi hopes that the friends will give her all the necessary facilities to make of her tour a real success. The report of her work in Australia and New Zealand has been brilliant. There is no reason why she should not do the same in India and Burma if she is given the chance and be put in touch with really open minded and interested people. In America she is considered among the first class national teachers and is well informed as to the progress of modern thought and the teachings of the Cause. Maybe she will be able to give a new impetus to the teaching work.

In closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's loving greetings and best wishes. He trusts that through the efforts of you and the other members of the National Assembly the Cause will take a real lead in uniting the different elements existing in India and turn the face of its people to the light of God shining through Baha'u'llah.

Dear and precious co-worker:

Your most welcome letter, interrupting a prolonged silence on your part, has brought joy and strength to my heart. I will most assuredly pray <p78> for your complete recovery, for in you the Cause in India has an invaluable asset which I for my part; greatly value and prize. I trust and pray that Mrs. Kehler's visit will lend a fresh impetus to the work which you are so ably conducting. I would certainly advise her to prolong her stay in your midst if it is practicable for her to do so. It is a splendid opportunity which the friends in India should utilize to the utmost possible extent. May the Beloved bless and reinforce your high endeavours, remove every obstacle from your path, and enable you at once to broaden and reinforce the foundations of the Faith in that troubled land. Your true and affectionate brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

March 12, 1932

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated February 26th, 1932. He was very sorry to hear that you have been very ill and forced to take a leave from your work and have some rest. He sincerely hopes that this vacation will restore your strength and enable you to resume your work with even greater vigour and determination. In his moments of prayer at the Shrines he will think of you and ask God to help and guide you, to keep you both for your family and also for His blessed Cause. Shoghi Effendi was very glad to hear of the arrangements you have made for the trip of Mrs. Ransom Kehler to India. Being thoroughly familiar with the teachings, and a competent speaker, she should succeed to render wonderful services to the progress of the Movement in India. She could be easily ranked as a first class teacher among the Baha'is of America and has been the cause of guidance to innumerable souls. Guided and helped by Prof. Pritam Singh she should be able to awaken many souls to the spirit and teachings of Baha'u'llah.

Please extend to them both Shoghi Effendi's loving greetings and best wishes.

Dear and valued co-worker:

I wish to urge you to take as soon as you possibly can, the necessary and most effective steps to ensure the translation of Dr Esslemont's book into Urdu and Gujrati. I have already expressed the desirability to have <p79> these translations to a number of pilgrims, but so far my hopes have not materialized. This book has already been translated and printed into eight different languages, the latest being Russian, Hebrew and Chinese. The Persian, the Albanian, the Bulgarian, the French and the Swedish versions will be printed this year. I wish you to do all in your power to ensure the speedy and correct translation of this book into these two languages, and if necessary to hire the services of a competent non-Baha'i translator. I shall be only too pleased to assist financially both with regard to their translation and publication. May the Beloved guide and assist you in this vital and important task

Shoghi

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

March 24, 1932

Dear Baha'i Brother,

One of the interests of Shoghi Effendi at present is to have the book of Dr Esslemont's translated into as many different languages as possible. He already has had it translated and published into a dozen languages and others are forthcoming.

This deep interest is primarily due to the fact that the teachers are in many countries hampered in their work by the lack of proper literature to be handed to an earnest seeker. Neither they have the time nor the beginner has the patience for long discourses on the tenets of the Faith and there is in many countries no book to fill that gap.

Dr Esslemont's book is in many respects the best available. It is comprehensive in its scope and also clear and simple in its rendering. It has also been corrected partly by our beloved Master.

In short, Shoghi Effendi would be very thankful if you should arrange for its translation into the Burmese language. It should, however, be done by a person who is well versed in that language and also is thoroughly conversant with English. He also promises to send a contribution when it is ready for publication as he has been doing in the case of the other translations.

He believes very fervently that when that book will be out from the press the teaching work will be stimulated and the task of the teachers infinitely facilitated.

In close may I express his loving greetings and best wishes and <p80> also his many thanks in advance for this work which he is sure you will take up immediately and with all your fervour and love.

===================

 

March 28, 1932

Dear Mr. Rahman,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated March 14th 1932 informing him about the arrival of Mrs. Ransom Kehler to Calcutta. He was very glad to know that her visit was successful and that it has very much stimulated the teaching work in that city. He sincerely hopes that as a consequence a number of souls will enter the Cause and be inspired by its divine teachings and ennobling spirit.

Such teachers of the Cause who, with all sincerity and determination, undertake such long trips, should be very much helped by the resident believers if real progress is to be achieved. They ought to be assisted to reach important people, speak to intelligent and receptive audiences, and obtain interviews with persons whose heart is open to the light of God. Otherwise, during their short stay, they would, like a helpless man in a strange country, be impotent to achieve their purpose.

Shoghi Effendi is very glad the friends have taken the necessary step to assist Mrs. Ransom Kehler by appointing Professor Pritam Singh to accompany her in her trip through India. May God help her and help you in proclaiming the word of God through the length and breadth of that vast land.

Assuring you of Shoghi Effendi's prayers and best wishes both for you and also for the members of the Spiritual Assembly and the other Baha'is of Calcutta.

With the assurance of my loving and fervent prayers at the Holy Shrines for your spiritual advancement and success in the service of our beloved Faith. Your true brother,

Shoghi

 

=================== <p81>

April 5,1932

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters dated March 11th and 25th 1932. He was very glad to learn of the plans you made for Mrs. Ransom Kehler. He sincerely hopes that in these meetings and public lectures delivered in so many cities, she has been able to attract some new souls to the Cause and confirm people who until now have been merely interested. We should admit, however, that the time at her disposal was too short to give her the chance of doing her best. A teacher ought to remain at least a few months in the same city if he wants to really confirm souls. Mere passing and giving a lecture or two is not sufficient unless there are resident Baha'is to continue the work that was merely started. Anyhow Mrs. Ransom Kehler is expected to reach Haifa in about 3 weeks and Shoghi Effendi will hear the report of her journey from herself.

The Guardian was very glad to learn of your quick response to his expressed desire in having Dr. Esslemont's book translated into Urdu and Gujrati. As he comes to learn from one of the Parsee pilgrims here in Haifa, the book has already been translated by a competent Baha'i in India into Gujrati. So there remains only Urdu. Shoghi Effendi wishes you to concentrate upon having the book translated only into Urdu.

He was very glad to hear that your health has very much improved. He sincerely hopes that your illness will gradually disappear - and leave you again strong and fit to serve the Cause. We need workers and cannot spare any of the very few we have.

In closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's prayers and best wishes and extend his hope that you as well as the members of your family will ever remain under God's protection and loving care.

Dear and precious co-worker.

I wish you to concentrate your efforts on the completion oft be Urdu version of Dr Esslemont's book, and to take the necessary steps for its early publication. I shall be only too glad to assist financially in its printing as soon as its translation is completed. I also desire to stress the paramount importance of following up the valuable work accomplished by Mrs. Kehler, which I hope other international Baha'i teachers will reinforce. How vast is the field and how small the number of competent <p82> teachers! Baha'u'llah will however bless and crown our efforts with success if we persevere and labour with unabated confidence and vigour. Your self-sacrificing endeavours are worthy of the highest praise and I pray that the Almighty may continue to guide and sustain you in your great work for His Cause. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

April 12, 1932

Dear Mr. Vakil,

 

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated April 1st 1932 as well as the enclosed letter from Mrs. Keith Ransom Kehler.

He sincerely hopes that as a result of her trip the Cause will make a great progress in India and many souls will be drawn into the Cause. It was surely very nice and wise on the part of the National Assembly to appoint Mr. Pritam Singh to travel with her and help her make openings into intellectual circles. It is unfortunate, however, that she cannot stay long in every centre and make really confirmed believers such as she did in certain centres in Australia. But perhaps the National Assembly will attend to that task and keep in touch with persons she will interest, and gradually make them embrace the Faith and lend help towards its progress. We need teachers in every part of the world, and as those who are in active service are few we should create some from the material we have. It is the work of the National Spiritual Assembly to attend to such matters and develop some of our young Baha'is into competent teachers.

In a previous letter I informed you on behalf of Shoghi Effendi that as we already have a translation of Dr Esslemont's book into Gujrati, you concentrate your efforts on having it rendered only into Urdu, so that the work may soon be completed and published. Shoghi Effendi is sending the sum of $200 or £48 for that purpose, sent by Mrs. Esty of Buffalo. He was very glad to know that you are feeling better and that your health has very much improved. Please convey his greetings to all the friends specially the members of your family.

Assuring you of his prayers and best wishes. <p83>

Dear co-worker:

I trust you have by now taken the necessary steps for a prompt and careful translation of the book into Urdu. This service will, I am sure, be an added blessing to the masses of India, whom you are striving so devotedly and energetically to arouse and teach. May it prove a prelude to an intensive and fruitful teaching campaign that shall bring in its wake enlightenment, peace and hope to the distracted multitudes of that agitated country. I will continue to pray for you, your dear family and your devoted collaborators, from the depths of my heart. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

May 31, 1932

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters dated April 8th, 15th, 30th and May 20th 1932. He was very glad to hear that Mr. Hishmatu'llah has undertaken to translate Dr Esslemont's book into Urdu for he is sure that he will exert himself to produce a first class translation.

Even though we can refer to a non-Baha'i when we have no one among the friends to undertake a proper work of translation, yet it is always preferable to have it accomplished by a person who is imbued with the spirit and is already familiar with the different expressions of Baha'i conceptions unfamiliar to a non-Baha'i. Shoghi Effendi wishes him success and will pray for his guidance.

He was also delighted to hear that Mr. Chatterji has rendered the book into Hindi. It is surely a wonderful service which will prove of great help among people who are familiar with that language. Shoghi Effendi is sending a check for £50 which 1 will enclose, as his contribution towards the publication of this book. In case there is a great difference between publishing five hundred copies and one thousand copies, and you do not find the need of so many books in that language, Shoghi Effendi would advise you to have only five hundred copies published. He would however leave the decision to you.

Mrs. Ransom Kehler is now in Haifa taking some rest before starting for Persia, where she expects to stay a few months. Shoghi Effendi was very glad to hear of her great success in India. He hopes that she will after Persia pay another visit to that country and resume <p84> the work she has started. She is surely a very competent teacher and well versed in the Writings.

Assuring you of Shoghi Effendi's prayers and best wishes.

Dear and valued co-worker:

I trust and pray that you will be enabled to start promptly the publication of the Hindi translation on one hand, and to ensure, on the other, the early completion of the Urdu version, both of which, I feel are indispensable preliminaries to an intensive teaching campaign among the great masses of the Indian people. I am confident that the publication of the Gujrati version together with these and the Burmese translations, will reinforce the impetus which the projected visit of Mrs. Kehler to India next autumn, will lend to the onward march of or beloved Cause in India. May the Almighty reinforce your labours and bless your high endeavours.

Shoghi

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

July 10, 1932

Beloved Baha'i Pioneer,

Shoghi Effendi was very glad to receive your kind letter of June 13th, 1932 and he wishes me to thank you on his behalf and to extend to you his loving appreciation of your continued and precious services to our beloved Faith.

In regard to the translation of Dr Esslemont's book into Burmese, Shoghi Effendi wishes you to persevere in your efforts and not be discouraged by the difficulties and obstacles that stand in your way. He sincerely trusts that through your devotion, wisdom and selfless endeavours the book will be soon translated and published.

I need not assure you how deeply appreciative the Guardian is of all that you have done and are still doing for the spread of the Cause, and he is confident that such splendid efforts on your part will lead to the future consolidation and extension of the Faith in your land. He will be always very glad to be in close touch with your activities and to give you whatever help and assistance you may need.

And in closing may I assure you of Shoghi Effendi's continued prayers on your behalf and on behalf of all the friends in Mandalay. <p85>

Dear and precious co-worker.

I am fully conscious of the difficulties that confront you as well as of your extreme desire to achieve the task I have requested you to perform. I continue to pray that every obstacle may be soon removed from your path and that your unsparing and exemplary efforts, in this as well in all other branches of Baha'i activity, may be crowned with signal success.

Your loving brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

JULY 14, 1932

GREATEST HOLY LEAF ASCENDED ABHA KINGDOM OUR

GRIEF IMMENSE OUR LOSS IRREPARABLE INFORM LOCAL

ASSEMBLIES COMMEMORATE BEFITTINGLY SACRED EXPERIENCES

SO RICH SO SUBLIME SO EVENTFUL A LIFE. MAGNITUDE

OF OUR SORROW DEMANDS COMPLETE SUSPENSION

FOR 9 MONTHS THROUGHOUT BAHA'I WORLD EVERY FORM

RELIGIOUS FESTIVITY. HER MORTAL REMAINS LAID VICINITY

HOLY SHRINES.

SHOGHI

===================

 

JULY 27, 1932

RANGOON ASSEMBLY CARE VAKIL MY SORROW LADEN

HEART RELIEVED YOUR VALUED SYMPATHY

SHOGHI

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

August 25, 1932

Beloved co-worker in the Faith,

Your message of condolence and sympathy dated July 18th, 1932 ... was received and its perusal greatly comforted the bleeding heart of the Guardian. He wishes me to thank you from the very depth of his heart and assure you of his abiding appreciation of your continued and precious services to the Faith.

The ascension of the Greatest Holy Leaf has grieved his heart beyond words and had it not been for his assurance that in this <p86> calamitous event the friends are experiencing a profound spiritual awakening he would have remained utterly disconsolate.

His thoughts, in this terrible hour, are with you who are toiling so faithfully for the greater extension and consolidation of the Faith. I need not assure you how deeply appreciative he is of your work and he hopes that you will be enabled to serve the Cause with still greater zeal and success.

The memory of the beloved Khanum will, assuredly, prove to be your great comfort in your moments of sufferings and anxiety and will guide your steps and strengthen your spiritual power and insight...

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

October 1, 1932

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Shoghi Effendi has kindly read your letter of 29th August 1932 and is deeply thankful to God for having given him such devoted helpers who are always ready to arise and serve.

The Guardian would surely be most appreciative if you undertake to translate Dr Esslemont's book and then have some expert go over it and polish it. Perhaps this would be the most practical method of achieving that task.

In his moments of prayer at the Shrines, Shoghi Effendi will think of you and ask God to guide and assist you.

The Guardian is sending you under separate cover five copies of the Persian translation of Dr Esslemont's book. You might be interested to know that we will have five new translations of this book during this year.

We sincerely hope that this literature will be profitably used by the friends to attract new souls to the Cause of God...

===================

 

October 12, 1932

Dear Mr. Pritam Singh,

The Guardian wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated September 14th 1932 expressing your words of sympathy for the passing away of the Greatest Holy Leaf. <p87>

She was such a source of joy, hope and inspiration to those who met her that not only Shoghi Effendi but every single Baha'i pilgrim will miss her terribly. To the lady pilgrims it was a real treat to go to have tea with her in the afternoons. She was always so radiantly hopeful and tried to persuade others that sorrows are passing and have to be disregarded. The only consolation of Shoghi Effendi is that she has been freed from the physical weakness that during these last years was confining her to her room for most of the time. He is sure that in the realm in which she now is she is thinking of her friends and asking for them divine guidance and help.

The Guardian was very sorry to hear that the financial burdens of the "Baha'i Weekly" are pressing upon you, but as you say these are exceptionally hard times. We should be glad if we can just steer our boat and keep it floating. Conditions cannot remain as they are. Some material change has to come about if all the world is not to perish.

In his moments of prayer at the Shrines, Shoghi Effendi will think of you, the members of your family as well as your "pet child", the "Baha'i Weekly". Do not lose hope or feel discouraged. Every undertaking has to pass through difficulties before it can prove to be really successful. Consider what stormy days the "Baha'i Magazine" had to pass through before reaching its present status. I am sure that even now she feels great concern about her financial resources. The instructions of our Faith are based upon trust in God, and God I am sure will never fail us.

May the Beloved cheer, sustain and guide you in your valued and continued efforts despite almost unsurmountable obstacles to promote the interests of our beloved Faith and to diffuse its spirit throughout your native land. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

October 19, 1932

Dear Mr. Vakil,

The Guardian wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your four letters dated June 26th, August 12th, September 2nd and 16th 1932.

He is very glad to know that the different translations of Dr Esslemont's book, that you have undertaken to have made, are <p88> progressing rapidly. He sincerely hopes that before long they will be passed through the press and be ready for distribution.

Even though the book was written by a Christian and was meant to be for people of that Faith to read, yet it is a very fine presentation of the teachings as a whole and might prove interesting to other people as well. Shoghi Effendi surely hopes that before long the Cause may produce scholars that would write books which would be far deeper and more universal in scope, but for the present this is the best we possess to give a general idea as to the history and teachings of the Faith to new seekers. After reading this they get the necessary introduction to delve more deeply into the fundamental tenets such as are explained in the Iqan.

Shoghi Effendi hopes that these books will greatly stimulate the teaching work in India and become the cause of guidance to many sincere souls.

The Guardian wishes me also to thank you for your kind words of sympathy in connection with the passing away of the Greatest Holy Leaf. This great loss will be felt by every Baha'i, but specially the pilgrims to whom she used to be such a source of inspiration and joy. All those who met her left her presence with a new spirit and a firm determination to serve the Cause for which she suffered so much and whose progress was near to her heart.

What the Guardian is glad about is that her passing is creating a new spirit among the friends and arousing them to greater effort. May her death do for the progress of the Faith as much as her life did.

Please extend Shoghi Effendi's greetings to all the friends specially the members of your own family.

Dear and valued co-worker:

I wish to emphasize afresh the vital necessity of speeding up the work of the translation and publication of the Gujrati, the Urdu, and the Hindi versions of the "New Era", a book that has already been published into fourteen different languages and is being translated into sixteen additional tongues. I am deeply appreciative of what you have already achieved, and wish to assure you of my continued prayers for the success of your painstaking efforts and the realization of your dearest wish in the service of our be coved Faith. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p89>

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

October 26, 1932

Dear Baha'i brother,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated October 10th 1932 regarding the translation of Dr Esslemont's book into Burmese.

He was very glad to learn that the work is progressing gradually and surely, and that already a considerable amount of pages have been translated. He hopes that until the expiration of the time appointed the work will be completed. It is however very necessary that the reviewing committee go over the book very carefully, because a newcomer is generally not familiar with Baha'i terminology or method of expression.

The Guardian hopes that the financial part of the work will also be solved. Such matters have never blocked the way of the friends or even retarded their progress. Let us have faith in God's mighty hand and He will surely help us. Please convey Shoghi Effendi's greetings to all the friends. He sincerely hopes that they will always be guided in their work of serving the Cause and that they will succeed to attract many souls into a full acceptance of Baha'u'llah and His divine message.

 

Assuring you of Shoghi Effendi's prayers and best wishes.

Dear and valued brother:

Your welcome letter imparted joy and abiding consolation to my heavy-laden heart. I so deeply appreciate your inspiring efforts, as well as the diligent and self-sacrificing endeavours of your devoted co-workers in Mandalay, Rangoon and Kunjangoon. I wish to associate myself with their high efforts and am enclosing the sum of £ 9 in order to assist and hasten the completion of the translation of the book into Burmese. Sixteen printed translations have been already gathered together and placed in the Mansion of Baha'u'llah at Bahji close to His Sacred Shrine, and the book is now being translated into sixteen additional languages including the Burmese. Persevere in your efforts, never feel disheartened and rest assured and confident. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p90>

November 19, 1932

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to communicate with you to inquire regarding the Hindi and Urdu translations of Dr Esslemont's book. It is some time that he has had no definite word as to the progress of that work which you have so kindly undertaken to supervise. He sincerely hopes that gradually that task will be successfully achieved and that they will be ready to be submitted to the printers and then to the readers who may be anxiously awaiting to study them and benefit from their contents.

This work once completed will become a great stimulus to the teaching activities of the friends, for books can do infinitely more work than teachers. Sitting in a chair in a solitary corner one is infinitely more receptive to truth than in a lecture hail or in a discussion group. The public has learned the habit of reading. It is through that channel therefore that we have to approach them.

Assuring you of the Guardian's prayers and best wishes.

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

December 6,1932

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated November 21st 1932, as well as an account of the contributions made towards the translation of Dr. Esslemont's book into Burmese.

He deeply appreciates these gifts and hopes that instead the contributors will see with their own eyes the service the book will render towards the spread of the Cause and its teachings in that land. With such literature at his disposal the teacher can render his work much more secure. He can make sure that the new corner has some source for the information he needs, and to which he can refer.

Now, the Guardian wishes you to obtain an estimate as to the cost of the printing of that book once the translation is completed. He has helped in the publication of the other translations and he wishes to help in this case also. <p91>

He was very glad to know that the work of the translation is proceeding.

He wishes you to exert your efforts along that line and make sure that no unnecessary delay is incurred.

Please convey the greetings of Shoghi Effendi to all the Baha'is specially your wife. In his moments of prayer at the Blessed Shrines he will think of you all and ask God to guide and assist you in your endeavours to serve His Faith. <p92>

===================

 

====

1933

====

January 10, 1933

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated December 30th 1932. He was very glad to obtain some news regarding the translation of Dr Esslemont's book into Urdu and Hindi, for he feels deeply interested in the work. He feels that it is only when such books are accessible to the public that the Cause will begin to spread and its followers increase in number.

He, therefore, wishes you to exert your effort along that line so that the task may be achieved properly and without any needless delay. Also please keep him informed regarding any new development or any progress made.

We do not now have any pilgrims, but the news we receive from different parts of the world show great progress achieved by the friends. Even though material conditions in some instances hamper their activities to an appreciable extent, yet their devotion and self-sacrifice are daily winning for them the admiration and sympathy of the world around them. Everyday a new group is formed and new souls attracted to the faith. <p93>

Please convey the Guardian's loving greetings to all the friends specially the members of your family.

Dear and prized co-worker:

I grieve to learn of the delay in the translation and publication of the various translations of Dr Esslemont's valuable book, and I urge you to do all you possibly can to hasten the realization of our cherished hopes- hopes which when fulfilled will no doubt lend a great and fresh impetus to the advancement of the Faith in that land. I am enclosing a copy of my recent letter concerning the Greatest Holy Leaf and the measures which, I feel, must be taken by the friends in Persia preliminary to the formation of the House of Justice. May the Almighty guide your steps, cheer your heart and fulfil your dearest wish. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

 

[To the National Spiritual Assembly]

February 8, 1933

Dear Baha'i Brother,

The Guardian wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated January 18th 1933 giving him the glad news of the sum collected for a meeting place in Calcutta.

He sincerely hopes that through God's infinite blessings the necessary sum will be forthcoming and that in time a Centre worthy of the prestige and name of the Cause will be purchased or built.

Such institutions greatly help the spread of the Faith, for there will be a permanent place where the interested souls can go for information. It also operates as the centre of the different activities of the Spiritual Assembly of that locality.

In his moments of prayer at the Blessed Shrines, the Guardian will think of you as well as of the other friends in that locality and ask for you all divine guidance and help.

He was also delighted to hear that three new souls have accepted the Faith in Calcutta. He hopes that before long we will have large groups, comprising hundreds of earnest and seeking souls, enter the Cause and take part in spreading the Message. Please assure the three of them of Shoghi Effendi's loving greetings. <p94>

May the Beloved bless your constant and self-sacrificing endeavours for the promotion of His Cause and enable you and your devoted fellow-workers to fulfil your heart's cherished desire. Your true brother

Shoghi

===================

 

March 1, 1933

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to write you this short note to enclose a cheque for thirty pounds.

This is his contribution towards the publication of the translation of Dr Esslemont's book into Burmese which has been made by Seyed Mustafa Rumi. Please inform the latter about its receipt because he has asked the Guardian to send this contribution through you and he may be anxious to receive this news.

Assuring you of Shoghi Effendi's prayers and best wishes.

===================

 

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

March 23, 1933

Dear Baha'i Brother,

The Guardian was very pleased to read your letter of March 6th 1933, because it bore the very welcome news that the translation of Dr Esslemont's book has been completed and that it has been already submitted to the press. He sincerely hopes that that stage of the work will also soon come to a close and that the Burmese-speaking people will be enabled to benefit from it. Shoghi Effendi has great hopes that the publication of this book will start a new era in the history of the progress of the Faith in that land. Those who read it are bound to be impressed by the teaching it contains and become imbued with the spirit it manifests. The efforts of the teachers will become a hundred fold more fruitful and those who are interested can be given the chance to deepen their knowledge.

In any case, Shoghi Effendi wishes me to express his deep appreciation for your labours and kind efforts along that line. The service the book shall render, will surely be a sufficient reward for your work. <p95>

The Guardian feels that one thousand copies are sufficient. When this edition is sold out and a demand is created for them, then we could have a second and larger edition printed. In any case when the book is out please send fifty copies to the address of the Guardian. He wishes to place some copies in the different libraries he has instituted here in Haifa.

In closing may I express again Shoghi Effendi's deep appreciation for your services and assure you of his prayers and best wishes.

Dear and valued co-worker:

It is with the greatest pleasure that I have learned of the completion of the translation into Burmese of the "New Era", and of the determination of the friends in Burma to ensure its prompt publication. The circulation of this book will constitute a landmark in the history of the Cause in that land. May it be a prelude to an intensive campaign of teaching and concerted effort on the part of the friends in those regions and like a magnet, attract the abundant blessings of our departed Master. I will place most of the 50 copies you will send me in the library of the newly restored Mansion of Baha'u'llah at Bahji, a constant reminder of the self-sacrificing endeavors of my beloved Burmese brethren.

Shoghi

===================

March 24, 1933

Dear Mr. Vakil,

 

The Guardian has directed me to acknowledge tile receipt of your letter of March 10th 1933.

He was very glad to learn that the Burmese translation has been completed and that it is now in the hands of the printers. As he has communicated with Sayed Mustafa Rumie, the Guardian thinks that one thousand copies are quite sufficient for the present. If these are circulated widely and further demand is created then we could consider the question of enlarging the second edition. Shoghi Effendi wishes also to have fifty copies sent to him for his use here in Haifa, whenever they are out of the press and ready for distribution.

Now the translation into Burmese and Gujrati have been completed and the latter is even printed and circulated. The Guardian feels we should concentrate upon the Hindi and Urdu translations. We <p96> should not permit so much unnecessary delay. If one way seems closed or difficult we could try another and strive for the speedy completion of those books. The more we see the crying need of the world for the spiritual teachings of our Faith the more restless we should feel in giving out the Message and improving the means of diffusing the precepts of the Cause.

In his moments of prayer at the Blessed Shrines the Guardian will think of you and ask God to guide and sustain your efforts. He knows fully how difficult it is these days to bring a task to a speedy and successful conclusion, but to a person who is determined and lays his trust in God nothing is impossible.

Dear and precious co-worker:

I rejoice to hear of the steps that are being taken for the printing of the Burmese edition of the "New Era" but deplore the delay in the translation of the book into Hindi and Urdu. The Gujrati copies have already been placed in the library of the Mansion at Bahji and I long with all my heart to witness these remaining translations in their final and printed form, side by side with the nineteen printed versions which have already been collected and distributed throughout the world. I would urge you to concentrate your energy on this important and essential preliminary to an intensive campaign of teaching among the masses in India. Persevere and rest assured that my prayers will continue to be offered on your behalf.

Shoghi

===================

[To N. R. Vakil]

June 8, 1933

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Your message of March 24th, 1933 addressed to our beloved Guardian was received and was deeply appreciated. The delay in answering was caused by the unusual amount of work which demanded Shoghi Effendi's personal and immediate supervision during the last few months. He was very glad to receive the Gujrati translation of Dr Esslemont's book, and he hopes that through your efforts the Hindi and Urdu translation of it will soon be ready for publication. <p97>

As you may know, this work has already been translated into nineteen different languages, and its rendering into eleven others will be soon completed. This is really encouraging.

Recently the Guardian received a letter from Mr. Habibo'llah M. Monji, one of our young Bombay friends, telling him of his intention of having the Hidden Words translated into Gujrati and Hindi. This is a splendid idea, provided Mr. Monji's knowledge of these languages be sufficiently extensive. He seems to be a very devoted and enthusiastic Baha'i. Shoghi Effendi would like you to find out whether he is really competent to undertake such an important work, and in case you find that he is really capable, he would strongly urge you to help him and encourage him to bring his work to successful completion.

In closing may I assure you of his best and kindest wishes for your family and for yourself. The memory of your visit to Haifa is still fresh in his mind. Your sincerity and devotion to the Cause he will always remember and greatly appreciate. He hopes that as years go by they will increasingly enrich the splendid record of your services to the Faith.

Dear and valued co-worker:

I long to hear from you and of the progress of your devoted and incessant activities in the service of our beloved Faith. I am also eager to receive the good news of the completion of the translation and early publication of the Urdu and Hindi versions of the "New Era". The utmost effort should be exerted to ensure the consummation of this work, which, I feel, must precede an intensive teaching campaign among the masses in India. I am arranging for Mrs. Kehler to visit southern Persia this autumn after which she is expecting to visit India, this winter. I trust you are keeping in good health and that your pioneer work is progressing satisfactorily.

Your true, your affectionate and grateful brother,

Shoghi

===================

[To Prof. Pritam Singh]

June 13, 1933

Dear Baha'i Brother,

I am directed by Shoghi Effendi to inform you of the receipt of your letter dated May 25th, 1933 and to renew the expression of his <p98> heartfelt appreciation of your unforgettable services to the Cause in India.

He was particularly glad to learn that some of our Indian friends have encouraged you to start a fortnightly paper on the Cause. The idea is, undoubtedly, most genuine and meets with our Guardian's wholehearted approval. He wishes you, however, not to act hurriedly, to take all the necessary steps which can ensure its safety and development.

Such projects are not so easy to carry out, specially in these days when the economic crisis is getting so acute. At any rate, if you find that your financial conditions allow you to undertake such an important work, you should persevere in your efforts and try to make your paper an indispensable adjunct to the teaching activities of the friends.

The Guardian hopes that you will be more successful in this, your second attempt. The unexpected death of the "Baha'i Weekly", he feels, had badly affected the prestige of the Cause. It is hoped that your new fortnightly paper will enable all to appreciate more adequately the divine potency with which it is endowed. Mrs. Keith Ransom Kehler, who has been doing such a fine work in Persia, is planning to leave for India at the beginning of winter. Her presence among you will be certainly appreciated. She is such a wonderful soul, so devoted, so active and so capable. The Guardian hopes that you will make the utmost use of her stay in India. In closing may I assure you of his prayers on your behalf and on behalf of all the believers in Lahore.

P.S. Shoghi Effendi wishes also to express his special thanks to all those who have specially contributed their share for the resumption of the Magazine. Kindly convey to them all the expression of our Guardian's deepest gratitude and lively appreciation.

Dear and valued co-worker:

Your unswerving loyalty and inflexible resolve to carry on the work you have so nobly initiated are indeed worthy of the highest praise. I will pray for your success and the steady and uninterrupted progress of your activities whenever flay my head on the sacred Threshold and will supplicate for you all the strength and guidance you need for the prosecution of your task. The friends in India and Burma shoddy bestir themselves and, under the guidance and by the aid of the National <p99> Assembly prepare the way for the forthcoming visit of our able and brilliant international teacher Mrs. Kehler. May the Lord sustain and guide them in their endeavours and reward them for their acts of self-sacrifice in His Path.

Shoghi

===================

[To N.R. Vakil]

June 17, 1933

Dear Baha'i Brother,

The Guardian has requested me to send you enclosed a rough copy of a memorandum he has recently addressed to the British High Commissioner in Jerusalem. He wants you to read it very carefully and then write immediately a strongly worded petition on behalf of the National Assembly of the Baha'is of India and Burma to the High Commissioner in Palestine, emphasizing the fact that the Indian National Assembly is earnestly appealing to the High Commissioner to realize the gravity of the issues invoked in their petition.

The Guardian does not want you to follow too closely the text and form of the enclosed memorandum, but to be only guided by the facts that are set forth therein. He wishes you then to sign it, to seal it and then to forward it directly to Jerusalem. He is sending you enclosed the full address of the High Commissioner. He has also requested the Persian, the American, the British and the German Assemblies to address immediately a similar petition and mail it directly to Jerusalem. The crisis has been precipitated by the enemies of the Cause, who have contended that for legal purposes the Baha'i community does not exist in Palestine... These petitions will be probably forwarded to the Colonial Office in London. The case will thereby acquire added significance and may well pave the way for an official recognition of the Baha'i Faith by the British authorities as an independent religion in Palestine.

The Guardian feels that the document should be very carefully worded and should emphasize the importance and significance of the Shrine of the Bab, as one of the holiest spots in the Baha'i world.

With the renewed assurance of his best wishes for the members of the National Assembly and for yourself. <p100>

P.S. Will you kindly send him a copy of your petition as soon as you send it to Jerusalem.

Read and Approved

Shoghi

===================

[To N. R. Vakil]

August 6,1933

Dear Baha'i Co worker,

Your letters addressed to the Guardian and dated June 16th and 23rd, and July 7th and 8th, 1933 were duly received and were read with deepest care and appreciation. He was also very glad to receive a copy of your petition to His Excellency the High Commissioner and he feels confident that it will serve to impress upon the authorities in Jerusalem the urgency of our case.

As regards the Urdu translation of Dr Esslemont's book, Shoghi Effendi wishes you to make all the necessary effort to have it published as soon as possible. He is fully aware of the difficulties that have caused an inevitable delay in the publication of this highly important work, but he feels certain that, through your perseverance and through the kind and invaluable assistance of Prof. Pritam Singh and Dr Hishmatu'llah the translation will be soon completed and be ready for publication.

The Guardian would like you also to take all the necessary steps for the Hindi translation of this same work. It is hoped that no delay will be caused this time.

In closing let me ask you to extend to the members of your newly elected National Assembly the loving greetings of Shoghi Effendi. May Baha'u'llah increasingly help you to carry forward His Message and impart to your soul the strength and the peace of which you are all in such a great need in these days of storm and stress.

With his fervent prayers on your behalf and on behalf of every member of your family. <p101>

Dear and prized co-worker:

Your petition to the High Commissioner is splendid, and to you, in particular, I wish to express my abiding and deep gratitude.

The Serbian and Hungarian versions of "The New Era" have been recently published through the efforts of Martha Root. The Rumanian translation has been undertaken and the Greek version will soon be started. I long to see the Urdu, the Hindi and the Burmese versions in print and circulated among the masses of the Indian people. Persevere and redouble your efforts. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi

[To N. R. Vakil]

September 10, 1933

Dear Baha'i Friend,

The Guardian has directed me to acknowledge on his behalf the receipt of your letter dated August 18th, 1933, together with the enclosed copy of the High Commissioner's letter addressed to the President of our Indian National Spiritual Assembly in reply to your petition concerning our case with the Demits. The answer he has himself received is very promising and contains the High Commissioners replies to your Assembly, as well as to our other National Assemblies in various other lands. He hopes that the Authorities will keep their promise and will carefully and impartially consider the case when it will be put before them for final decision.

Shoghi Effendi was deeply gratified to learn of the important steps you have taken for the translation and publication of Dr Esslemont's book into Hindi. He has greatly appreciated the assistance of Dr Kaushal Kishore, and sincerely trusts that through your combined efforts the work will be soon completed and will be ready for circulation. In a recent communication to the Guardian, our devoted friend Siyyid Mustafa Rumie, has given the news of the publication of this same book in Burmese. It is hoped that this will serve to encourage our Indian believers to follow his example.

In closing, may I assure you once more of our Guardian's ardent prayers on your behalf and on behalf of each and every member of your family. He was so grieved to hear of your illness, and hopes that, by the time this letter reaches you, your health has been completely <p102> restored, and that you are fully able to resume your important work on behalf of the Cause.

With his loving greetings and best wishes for Mrs. Vakil, children and your dear self.

Dear and valued co-worker:

I am so pleased and grateful to you for your incessant efforts in connection with the translation and publication of the "New Era", and I am deeply gratified to learn of the progress already achieved. I will continue to pray for the speedy realization of your hopes, plans and wishes in the service of this glorious Faith. I grieve to learn however of your recent illness, and entreat you not to overtax your strength, and to rest as completely and as long as possible. The Cause stands in dire need of servants and promoters such as your dear self I will pray for your complete recovery from the depths of my heart

Shoghi

===================

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

September 10, 1933

Dear Baha'i Friend,

I have been requested by Shoghi Effendi to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated August 14th, 1933 and to renew the expression of his abiding appreciation of the pioneering services you have been, and are so increasingly rendering to the Faith in Mandalay. I wish to thank you particularly on his behalf for the admirable way in which you have carried out his wishes and instructions in connection with the translation and publication of Dr Esslemont's book into Burmese. Such a highly difficult task has, undoubtedly, cost you a good deal of self-sacrifice and of hard and continued effort. But you can be assured that the result obtained is of such a high significance and importance to the progress of the Cause in Mandalay that it will not only add a fresh lustre to the immense work that you have been doing for so many long years, but will constitute a challenge to every thoughtful and loyal believer to follow the example you have set before him. Our beloved Master is surely looking down upon you from the Realm above with eyes full of admiration and praise, and is <p103> looking still forward to see you more active and more ardent than ever in His Divine Covenant.

Assuring you once more of our Guardian's best wishes and of his fervent prayers on your behalf, so that the Almighty may guide your steps, cheer your heart and keep you firm and constant in His Faith.

With loving greetings and deepest Baha'i love to you and to all the friends in Kunjangoon.

Dearly beloved co-worker:

What you have accomplished with zeal, courage, ability and love fills me with joy, thankfulness and admiration for the sterling qualities that have characterized your long and distinguished career of service to the Cause of God. You have added fresh laurels to an already brilliant record of service. The fifty volumes you have sent will be placed on your behalf and in your name in the international Baha'i library within the holy Mansion at Bahji adjoining the Shrine of Baha'u'llah. I will ever be reminded of your glorious and exemplary services to the Abha Revelation.

I will continue to pray for you from all my heart. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

October 5, 1933

Dear Baha'i Friend,

I have been requested by the Guardian to thank you for your letter dated September 2nd, 1933, and to express his heartfelt appreciation of your efforts in connection with the writing of the history of the Cause in India and Burma. Your valuable studies on the subject which have appeared in the form of a series of articles in the "Baha'i Magazine" have greatly interested both the Baha'is and the non-Baha'is.

It is hoped that the history you have been asked to write in Persian will produce similar results you should try to make it as detailed as possible, giving all the facts you can gather, together with any document or photograph which can illustrate the work and give it a scholarly and scientific character.

In closing, let me assure you once more of Shoghi Effendi's fervent prayers on your behalf and on behalf of all our friends in Burma. <p104>

Dear and most prized co-worker:

What you will place on record regarding the history of the Faith in India and Burma will acquire tremendous significance and influence in the days to come. It will serve to instruct, inspire, and cheer countless souls among the rising generation, and will add fresh laurels to those you have so deservedly won in the service of Cod's immortal Faith. No words can adequately convey the gratitude I feel in my heart for your continued and inestimable services. Your true and affectionate brother,

Shoghi

===================

[To N. R. Vakil]

October 27, 1933

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Your letter of September 13th, 1933, addressed to Shoghi Effendi... were all duly received... The continued and most timely assistance which our Indian believers have so kindly and so devotedly extended to their American brethren in their supreme effort for the resumption of the work on the Temple dome has been a fresh source of encouragement and of comfort to him, and he trusts that this truly Baha'i spirit of cooperation between the East and West will continue to animate and to add a fresh lustre to their precious services to the Cause.

The Guardian was also very glad and deeply comforted to learn that your health is improving, and that gradually your energy is being restored. He wishes you to be very careful not to overtax your strength, and take all the necessary measures for your speedy and complete recovery. His prayers on your behalf will continue to be offered to Baha'u'llah, that He may strengthen you, and keep you as ever active in His Faith.

With best wishes for Mrs. Vakil, children and your dear self.

Dear and precious co-worker:

Your previous letter of August 25 has reached me and I rejoice to learn that the Burmese version of the "New Era" is being circulated. I long to hear of the completion and publication of the Hindi and Urdu versions. The utmost effort should be exerted in order to expedite this most important and urgent work. The situation in Bombay is confused, <p105> and I would request you to visit the friends if possible and endeavour to establish harmony and cooperation among the new and old elements that are striving to Promote the Cause in that great and important city. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi

===================

[To N.R. Vakil]

November 26, 1933

Dear Baha'i Brother,

The Guardian was deeply gratified to receive your welcome letter of November 18th and to learn of the success of the meeting of our Indian National Spiritual Assembly held in Bombay. It is very regrettable that you could not attend the session in person for your presence is of such a valuable help to the friends, particularly in these stormy days when the Faith needs more than ever the whole hearted assistance of its capable, loyal and active followers.

The sudden passing of that wholly consecrated and brilliant teacher and international promoter of the Cause Mrs. Keith Ransom Kehler, has plunged Shoghi Effendi into deepest sorrow for in her he has lost not only a valuable co-worker but a dear friend. After more than a year of intense teaching work in Persia, where she was entrusted by the Guardian with the mission of acquainting our Persian brethren with the basic principles of the Administration, and of liberating them from the appalling persecutions to which they have been lately subjected, our precious Keith left this world under so tragic circumstances that she was given by the Guardian the title of the first Western martyr on Persian soil, and was raised by him to the station of one of the Hands of the Cause. Her deep-rooted and unshakable faith, her unqualified loyalty to the Cause of the Administration, and her profound knowledge of the Teachings, all these fully entitled her to occupy such an eminent rank among the faithful.

Our Indian friends, who have been so appreciative of her last visit to them, must have been particularly affected by such an irretrievable joss. May the memory of her services inspire them to follow in her footsteps, and to tread the path of service as firmly and as successfully as she did.

With the renewed assurance of our Guardian's fervent prayers on your behalf and on behalf of Mrs. Vakil and children. <p106>

Dear and precious co-worker:

I grieve to learn that you have not yet fully recovered and I urge you to abide by the doctor's instructions and to take whatever measures are necessary for the complete and speedy restoration of your precious health. I am so eager to receive the news of the completion and publication of the Hindi and Urdu versions of the "New Era", and it will please and encourage you to know that we have already twenty five different printed versions of this precious book translated into Eastern and Western tongues. Your true and affectionate brother,

Shoghi

===================

[To The National Spiritual Assembly]

December 27, 1933

Dear Baha'i Friend,

The Guardian was greatly pleased to read the minutes of the last meeting of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of India and Burma and he wishes me to express his genuine appreciation of the important steps which your Assembly has taken for the further extension and consolidation of the administrative institutions of the Faith in that country. He would be very grateful if you send him regularly the minutes of the meetings of the National Spiritual Assembly, and he would be only too glad to offer any suggestion or advice which may help its members to better discharge their manifold and delicate functions. He sincerely hopes that your Assembly will meet as regularly and as frequently as possible in order to maintain the efficiency of its functioning and to raise the standard and to widen the scope of its activities.

The important decision of the National Spiritual Assembly relative to the registration of the Bombay Assembly as a recognized religious body is, in the Guardian's opinion, a leading step towards the official recognition of the Cause as an independent religious organisation by the Government authorities both in India and Burma. He would strongly urge, however, that the constitution to be adopted should not only be based on that which the New York Assembly has adopted for its own registration but should reproduce it identically without any change whatsoever but with due consideration to all local and geographical differences. <p107>

The Guardian wishes also to stress the necessity of completing the Urdu and the Hindi translations of Dr Esslemont's "New Era". He has already, in several communications addressed to Mr. N. R. Vakil, requested him to take all the necessary steps in this direction. May the decision of the National Spiritual Assembly on this point hasten and ensure the completion of this task to which the Guardian has so repeatedly drawn the attention of the friends.

In closing let me assure you, and through you each and every member of our Indian National Spiritual Assembly, of Shoghi Effendi's fervent prayers for the development and success of your continued labours for the strengthening and the widening of the basis of the administrative institutions of the Cause in India and Burma...

=================== <p108>

====

1934

====

[To Professor Pritam Singh]

January 2, 1934

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Your welcome letter of December 21st has been duly received, and the Guardian was very pleased to learn of the progress made by the Indian National Spiritual Assembly in its efforts to consolidate, widen and maintain the scope of its national activities. The difficulties in your way are tremendous. The differences of language and of social and intellectual background do, undoubtedly, render the work somewhat difficult to carry out and may temporarily check the efficient and smooth working of the national administrative machinery of the Faith. They, nevertheless, impart to the deliberations of the National Assembly a universality which they would be otherwise lacking, and give to its members a breadth of view which is their duty to cultivate and foster. It is not uniformity which we should seek in the formation of any national or local Assembly. For the bedrock of the Baha'i administrative order is the principle of unity in diversity, which has been so strongly and so repeatedly emphasized in the writings of the Cause. Differences which are not fundamental and contrary to the <p109> basic teachings of the Cause should be maintained, while the underlying unity of the administrative order should be at any cost preserved and insured. Unity, both of purpose and of means, is, indeed, indispensable to the safe and speedy working of every Assembly, whether local or national.

Another factor which, in the Guardian's opinion, is essential to the development of your National Spiritual Assembly, is the holding of frequent meetings. Although the members are stationed at great distances from one another yet they can communicate through correspondence. - It is not necessary that all the members should be present in all the sessions. Those, who for some reason or another, are unable to attend in person the meetings of the National Spiritual Assembly, can express their views in a written form and send them to the Assembly. The main point is that your national activities should not be let to suffer in any way, and its work be retarded and postponed because of such necessarily unimportant and secondary consider anon.

In closing please extend the Guardian's best wishes to each and every member of the National Spiritual Assembly and assure them of his ardent prayers on their behalf. May Baha'u'llah guide, strengthen and inspire you to persevere in your endeavours for the promotion of the Faith.

Dear co-worker:

I wish to assure you in person of my prayers for the removal of the difficulties, domestic and otherwise, that beset your path in these days. I will supplicate the Almighty to guide your in your manifold and valuable activities in the service of His Faith, to cheer your heart, and to deepen your understanding of the fundamentals of His Faith. You should concentrate your efforts at the present time on whatever will, in your opinion reinforce the basis, and extend the influence, of the administrative institutions and the teaching activities of the Faith. The Cause will, no doubt, surmount the obstacles that now hinder its growth, and will establish its ascendency in the fulness of time and at the appointed hour. We should persevere and never feel disheartened.

Shoghi

=================== <p110>

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

February 19, 1934

Dear Baha'i Friend,

I wish to thank you most warmly on behalf of the Guardian for your letter of. February 5th which was so full of the news of the progress of the Cause in Mandalay. He was particularly gratified to learn that through your efforts and through the assistance of some other friends the Bengali translation of the "New Era" is ready for publication. He hopes you will be soon able to send it to the press, as he feels that the circulation of this valuable book can highly stimulate the spread of the Cause.

Shoghi Effendi was also much pleased to learn that you have successfully completed your history of the rise and progress of the Cause in India and Burma. He trusts that the Indian National Spiritual Assembly will be pleased over it and will approve of its being sent to Tihran. This is undoubtedly a real and abiding contribution you have been able to make to the Faith. May it fully serve its purpose and become a means whereby our Indian friends can be strengthened and inspired in their labours for the promotion of the Cause.

In closing I wish to convey our Guardian's best wishes and the assurance of his continued and ardent supplications for the further extension and consolidation of your pioneer work for the Cause in India and Burma.

Dear and precious co-worker:

The work you have recently accomplished is highly meritorious in the sight of God, and will no doubt attract fresh and still greater blessings from the throne of the Almighty. You have, in the evening of your life, added fresh laurels to the crown of immortal glory which your many services to the Faith have won for you and which future generations will gratefully and joyfully remember. I will continue to pray for you, for your dear wife and your devoted collaborators in that land. Rest assured, be happy, and persevere in your high endeavours. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p111>

[To Professor Pritam Singh]

April 10, 1934

Dear Baha'i Brother,

Your letter of March 13th addressed to the Guardian has just been received through the kind care of our dear Mr. Vakil, and the realization of your inability to serve as Secretary to the National Spiritual Assembly has deeply grieved his heart. It is, indeed, a matter of deep regret that such an able, devoted and efficient worker like you should be forced to leave such an important post in the national sphere of the administration. You should, therefore, make every possible sacrifice in order to continue serving the Cause in this field where you have already attained such a high distinction.

The Guardian, however, wishes by no means to force you to occupy a post which, in addition to the tremendous amount of work it demands, entails a responsibility which, for some reason or another, you may feel unable to assume. He would advise you, however, to submit your case to the National Spiritual Assembly at its next meeting at Delhi, that they may carefully consider the possibility of your resignation from the National Secretariat. They will surely consider the matter sympathetically and dispassionately and will give you all the advice you need. The National Spiritual Assembly cannot refuse accepting a resignation when it is well justified, and when it is done not with the purpose of shirking responsibility but with the intention of giving a chance to others to prove themselves worthy of occupying responsible posts in the administrative field.

Assuring you of the Guardian's prayers on your behalf, and with his best wishes for the development of your work for the Cause.

Dear valued co-worker:

Your sustained and inspiring labours under such trying and difficult circumstances are indeed highly praiseworthy and meritorious. I will pray from the depths of my heart that you will find it possible to lend your invaluable assistance to your collaborators in both the teaching and administrative fields of Baha'i activity. Your competence, your loyalty, your experience and knowledge of the essentials of the Faith eminently <p112> qualify you to take an active and leading part in its man fold activities. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi

===================

April 11, 1934

Dear Mr. Vakil,

I wish to thank you in the name of the Guardian for your letters dated March 4th and 30th, 1934, together with the enclosed copy of Baha'i activities in India and Burma for the period 1933 1934, which has already been forwarded to Mr. H. Holley for incorporation in his general survey of current Baha'i activities for the "Baha'i World". He has also received Prof. Pritam Singh's letter and has given it his careful consideration. He is sorry to learn that he is not able to continue serving as National Secretary. But he feels that the matter should be referred to your National Assembly, that they may consider the advisability and the possibility of his leaving the office. Of course, incase Mr. Pritam Singh feels wholly unable to act as Secretary to the National Spiritual Assembly, there is no reason for that body to refuse complying with his wish in this respect...

Concerning the translation and publication of the "New Era" into Hindi, Urdu, and Bengali, Shoghi Effendi wishes you to continue pressing the friends that they may bring the work to successful completion. He is rather surprised that no acknowledgment has thus far been made of the copy of his last general epistle [1] to the friends which he sent over a month ago to your address. In case that copy has been lost, please inform him that he may send you some more He is much relieved to learn of your improving physical condition, and he would strongly urge you to take the utmost care of your health which is such a real asset to the Cause in India. In view of that he sees no objection if you give up your journey to Delhi, specially if you have been advised by the physicians to avoid the, heat and the fatigue of the trip.

[1 The epistle referred to is "The Dispensation of Baha'u'llah"]

Dear and precious co-worker:

I am deeply sorry to hear of your continued ill health and wish you to concentrate for the present on the ways and means that enable you to <p113> recover fully and speedily and resume your valued labours for the spread of the Cause. I will be very pleased and grateful if you could send me as soon as possible photographic reproductions of the Registration Certificate incorporating the National Assembly of India and Burma. I hope to receive them before the end of May for incorporation in the "Baha'i World" Vol V. Your National Constitution I feel should be identical with the American Declaration of Trust and by-laws as published in the "Baha'i World". Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

May 29, 1934

Dear Mr. Vakil,

The Guardian wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters dated April 23rd and May 11th with enclosure, and to extend to you and to your collaborators in the National Spiritual Assembly his grateful appreciation of your ceaseless and ever widening efforts for the consolidation of the Faith. The resolutions passed by your National Spiritual Assembly at its recent meeting at Delhi have given him sufficient evidence of the new spirit that has come to animate its members. It is his hope that through the continued development of that same spirit your Assembly will be enabled to do more effective work for the Cause.

The Guardian was also gratified to learn that your health is gradually improving, and that the change of climate has done you some good. He will continue to pray on your behalf that your physical condition be fully restored, and that you may soon be in a position to adequately resume your duties for the Cause.

With his best wishes for Mrs. Vakil and children and yourself.

Dear and valued co-worker:

The splendid resolutions passed by the National Assembly at Delhi are admirable and indicate the revival of the spirit of fellowship and determination to consolidate the administrative basis of the faith in India and Burma. I am eagerly anticipating to hear the news that these resolutions have been duly carried out, particularly regarding the <p114> incorporation of the Bombay Assembly and the translation and publication of the "New Era" into Urdu and Sindhi. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi

===================

June 2, 1934

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Shoghi Effendi is mailing to your address a copy of Baha'u'llah's Tablet to the Greatest Holy Leaf, in His own handwriting, photographed in the States and illuminated in Tihran. He wishes you to present it to the National Spiritual Assembly, that they may place it in their archives. He has also sent copies of this same Tablet to our various National Assemblies for that purpose.

With best wishes for yourself, your family and the friends in Surat...

P.S. A translation of this Tablet by the Guardian has already been published in the States, together with other Tablets, in the form of a pamphlet.

===================

June 5, 1934

Dear Baha'i Friend,

In reply to your kind letter of May 11th concerning the case submitted by the Bombay Assembly to the National Spiritual Assembly, I wish to inform you that I have submitted the matter to the Guardian for his consideration and advice.

He fully agrees with the Bombay Assembly that they are in need of an English-speaking secretary, in view of the increasingly large volume of correspondence they receive in English. But he feels that this emergency does not afford sufficient justification to any believer or Assembly to make the slightest departure from the recognized and duly established principles governing the election of the members of any Assembly, whether local or national. If the Bombay Assembly feels it necessary to have a secretary for the English correspondence they can appoint an assistant Secretary from outside the Assembly. It <p115> is only the body of Baha'i electors who can bring about any change in the membership of the Assembly, and this during the Ridvan feast which for all administrative purposes is the beginning of the Baha'i year.

In view of that the Guardian wishes you as the Secretary of the National Spiritual Assembly to formally inform the Bombay Assembly of his suggestion that they should appoint an assistant Secretary, till the renewal of elections in the next Ridvan...

===================

July 11, 1934

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Your letter of June 17th, with the enclosed report on the election of the National Spiritual Assembly have been duly received and deeply appreciated by the Guardian. The news of the sudden passing of your father into the Kingdom has, however, deeply grieved his heart. He fully shares your sorrows at this great loss you have come to suffer, and wishes me to assure you of his fervent supplications on behalf of the departed, that the Almighty may open before him the doors of His grace and mercy and to enable his soul to progress still further in the other world.

May I also assure you once more of his prayers for the speedy and complete recovery of your health. It is such an asset to the welfare and safety of the Cause in India, that you should consider it to be your chief responsibility to do all that you can in order to keep it in the best condition possible.

With best wishes and greetings to Mrs. Vakil and children.

Dear and most valued co-worker:

I wish to extend to you in person my deepest sympathy in the great loss you have sustained. I will specially supplicate on behalf of your dear departed father that he may be made the recipient of the richest blessings in the Abha Kingdom. I urge you to take all the measures required for your complete recovery. Rest as much as you possibly can and rest assured that my prayers will continue to be offered on your behalf Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p116>

[To N. R. Vakil]

August 13, 1934

Dear Baha'i Brother,

On behalf of the Guardian I wish to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated July 23rd, together with the enclosed report on the election of the officers of the Indian National Spiritual Assembly. He hopes and fervently prays that this newly elected body may be fully assisted and guided in the discharge of its manifold and heavy responsibilities and functions, and that it may succeed particularly in fostering and preserving among its own members, and in the general body of the believers as well, a greater measure of unity and of cooperation.

Shoghi Effendi wishes me also to assure you once more of his continued supplications on your behalf, and on behalf of all the members of your family. May Baha'u'llah keep, strengthen and guide each and all of you in the path of His service, that through your devoted and continued endeavours the interests of the Faith in India may be further promoted and more effectively preserved and insured.

Dear and precious co-worker:

I truly rejoice to learn that you have sufficiently recovered to resume your great work of service to our beloved Faith. I trust that this year will witness unprecedented triumphs for the Cause of God and will mark a milestone in the progress of the Faith in that land. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

August 20, 1934

Dear Mr. Vakil,

I am charged by the Guardian to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated July 2 7th, and to thank you for the enclosed copies of your financial reports on the National Spiritual Assembly's fund.

It gives him real pleasure to witness the energetic and truly substantial part you are taking in administering the national affairs of the Cause in India, and this despite your physical disabilities and ailments. He is continually praying for your strength and guidance, that <p117> you may continue to play your part in consolidating the foundations of the Administration in your land.

Dear and precious co-worker:

How profoundly I appreciate, and how deeply I feel thankful for the share you have had in guiding, coordinating and consolidating the affairs of God's struggling Faith in your land! The Beloved is well pleased with the example you have set for the rising generation of your fellow-labourers in India and Burma. I will continue to pray for your good health from all my heart. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi

===================

November 3,1934

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Your welcome letter of October 4th addressed to the Guardian is just at hand. He wishes me to thank you for it... He wishes me also to gratefully acknowledge the receipt of the group photograph of yourself, Mrs. Vakil and a few other believers.

He is, indeed, very happy and deeply comforted to learn of the rapid improvement in the condition of your general health, and feels particularly glad that you are now able to attend to your court work. He wishes me, nevertheless, to urge you to be extremely careful not to overburden yourself, and not to tax your energies to the point of exhaustion. Your health is, indeed, a real asset to the Cause in India, and the friends can ill afford to lose it, specially now that new prospects for the development of the Faith throughout that country are appearing.

It is their, as well as your responsibility to take every measure which is necessary for the maintenance and continued expansion of your labours for the Cause.

With the assurance of the Guardian's prayers on your behalf, and on behalf of Mrs. Vakil, Mrs. Bahera and Mrs. Tahira.

Dearest brother:

I am so glad to note a decided improvement in the administrative conduct of Baha'i affairs in India, and I trust and pray that the teaching <p118> work will as a result receive afresh and unprecedented impetus. To teach the Cause is the ultimate purpose and the supreme objective of all Baha'i institutions. These are but means to an end. May the Beloved grant you strength to enhance the splendid work you have already achieved. I am eagerly awaiting the news of the publication of the Urdu and the .Sindhi editions of the "New Era". With the assurance of my continued prayers for you and your dear family. Your true brother,

Shoghi

===================

[Addressed to an individual believer]

November 20, 1934

... He himself would have much liked to intervene in the matter and solve it in person for you... But the principles and laws of the Administration require him to let such local matters take their normal and due course through the Local to the National Assembly, the highest administrative institution in that land...

===================

November 25, 1934

Dear Mr. Vakil,

Your welcome letter of the 18th of this month is just at hand and it has received the careful attention and consideration of our beloved Guardian.

He notes with deep satisfaction the important steps take by your National Spiritual Assembly for intensifying the spread of the Cause throughout India and Burma, and particularly values the encouragement and help which they have extended to dear Mr. Pritam Singh in his teaching tour in Northern India. He is praying from the depth of his heart for the success of this trip, as well as for the speedy and complete materialisation of the plans which you, in close collaboration with your fellow members in the National Assembly, are initiating for the wider diffusion of the Teachings throughout your country.

He fully appreciates, indeed, the suggestions you have offered him in this connection. The lack of competent teachers is no doubt a serious obstacle facing the Indian believers at present. But it is by no means the most difficult problem with which they have to deal. The <p119> essential is that all the friends, without any exception whatever, should realise the full measure of the responsibility which Baha'u'llah has placed on them for teaching far and wide His Message. It is only through such an awakened consciousness of their heavy and sacred responsibilities and duties that the believers can hope to effectively promote and safeguard the interests of the Cause. The Baha'i era is thus the age of individual responsibility-the age in which everyone is called to consider the spread of the Cause as his most sacred and vital obligation.

This is the point which the Guardian wishes your Assembly to emphasize in connection with the problem of teaching in India. He hopes that through their collective efforts a new zeal for teaching will come to animate the entire community of the believers throughout India and Burma.

Shoghi Effendi approves of your suggestion to utilize the £50 which he sent to you, for the publication of the Bengali translation of the "New Era". He hopes that this work will soon be ready for distribution.

You will certainly be interested to know that the photograph you sent him sometime ago representing your family as well as Mr. Hishmatu'llah, has been placed by him in Baha'u'llah's Mansion at Bahji.

With his renewed greetings and prayers for you and all the members of your family.

P.S. Will you kindly mail to the Guardian's address fifty copies of the Bengali "New Era" as soon as it will be ready.

With the renewed assistance of my loving prayers for you, for your dear family and collaborators in the service of the Cause. Your true brother,

Shoghi

=================== <p120>

November 27, 1934

Dear Mr. Vakil,

I am directed by the Guardian to request you to kindly mail to his address five copies of the Urdu translation of the Kitab-i-Aqdas (Book of Certitude).

With his loving greetings and thanks.

P.S. You will certainly be interested to know that the Iqan has already been translated and published into Russian, English, French, German, Chinese, Albanian, Urdu and Braille. Steps also have been taken for its rendering and publication into Arabic, Armenian, Swedish and Danish...

===================

[Addressed To Mr and Mrs. Muhammad Ishaq]

December 9,1934

Dear Baha'i Friends,

The Guardian was deeply interested and gratified to learn, through Mr. Rustam Khusrove of Poona, that you have recently embraced the Baha'i Cause, and have openly and in the face of the malignant enemies of the Faith identified yourselves with it. He wishes me to hasten in conveying to you his warm and heartfelt congratulations on the occasion of your conversion to the principles and teachings of this Movement, and also to express the hope that you will befittingly and steadfastly arise to contribute your full share towards its wider penetration and establishment in your locality.

He is grieved beyond words at the severe opposition with which your non-Baha'i relatives are trying to undermine your faith in the Cause. Nevertheless, he is confident that such attacks, however persistent and malicious, will eventually serve to intensify your zeal and to keep you firm and steadfast in the service of our beloved Cause.

The Guardian will specially pray on your behalf at the Holy Shrines, and will ask Baha'u'llah to guide and strengthen you in counteracting the evil machinations and designs of your enemies, and thus impress them with the invincible and divine character of this Revelation. <p121>

===================

[To Siyyid Mustafa Rumi]

December 17, 1934

Beloved Baha'i Brother, The Guardian wishes me to thank you for your deeply appreciated letter of December 4th with its enclosures, all of which he has carefully read and considered.

With reference to the Bengali translation of "Baha'u'llah and the New Era", he wishes me to convey to you, and to dear Mr. A. Islam as well, his hearty congratulations and grateful thanks for your splendid, sustained and successful efforts in this connection. He feels certain that nothing short of divine assistance, and of your painstaking and continued labours, could have brought this task to a successful consummation. He fully approves and deeply appreciates Mr. A. Islam's wish to defray the expenses for the printing of the book, and sincerely hopes that in this he will receive the whole hearted collaboration and encouragement of the National Spiritual Assembly. He wishes you to urge the National Assembly to return the manuscript as quickly as they can to Amiru'l Islam so as to expedite its publication.

The Guardian was also gratified to learn of the important Baha'i publications which you have translated into Burmese. He advises you to keep these manuscripts, or, in case you wish, to send them to the National Spiritual Assembly for publication in the future.

As regards your account of the history of the Cause in India and Burma, he hopes that the National Spiritual Assembly will soon find away for forwarding your manuscript to the Tihran Assembly. He feels that, in view of the fact that the entry of Baha'i literature is banned in Persia, it would be safer to send the manuscript through the care of a reliable person, preferably a believer.

In connection with your chairmanship in the National Spiritual Assembly, Shoghi Effendi has no objection if you, for reason of health or for any other important consideration, feel it essential to present your resignation as chairman of the Assembly. He would request you, however, to retain your membership in that body at any cost, even though you may feel unable to attend the sessions of the Assembly. Your membership in the National Spiritual Assembly he considers as a unifying force which is of essential importance to its effective working and progress. <p122>

With his renewed greetings and thanks and with his prayers for you and for dear Mr. Amiru'l Islam.

Dearly beloved co-worker:

Your letter profoundly touched me. I grieve to learn of your increasing infirmities and my heart is filled with inexpressible gratitude as I recall the long and distinguished record of service which will for ever remain associated with your dear self and name. I am asking the National Assembly to relieve you of the Chairmanship of their assembly and am sending a message of love and gratitude to dear Amiru'l Islam for his remarkable work and his generous offer. Rest assured that my thoughts and prayers are often with you and your dear wife and at the Holy Shrines I constantly remember you and pray for you. You belong to the heroic age of our Beloved Faith-an age to which you have so richly contributed. Rest assured and be happy.

Shoghi

=================== <p123>

====

1935

====

[To Ahmad Safdar, Pakistan]

January 2, 1935

Dear Baha'i Brother,

The Guardian has just been in receipt of a letter from Siyyid Mustafa Rumi of Mandalay, informing him of the gratifying news of your conversion to the Baha'i Faith, and of your eager desire to help in spreading its teachings in your centre.

He is, indeed, much pleased to learn that you are burning with the desire to teach the Cause in Chittagong and views with deep interest the activities in which you are now engaged for the attainment of this purpose. He advises you to work in close co operation with dear Amiru'l-Islam, so that through united and combined effort you may be able to effectively spread the Teachings, and thus pave the way for the establishment of an Assembly in Chittagong.

Shoghi Effendi is ardently supplicating on your behalf at the Holy Shrines and is entreating Baha'u'llah to guide your steps, cheer your heart, and bless and continually enrich your endeavours for the spread and establishment of His Faith in your centre. <p124>

===================

The National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of India and Burma.

January 20, 1935

Dear Baha'i Friends,

The Guardian has directed me to forward to your Assembly the enclosed translation of a letter he has recently received from the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Persia regarding the grave situation that has arisen there, and the severe restrictions that have been imposed by the Persian government upon the community of believers in that land.

The persecutions from which the Persian friends are now suffering represent, indeed, the culmination in the long and nation wide campaign which the authorities in that country have during the last two years launched against the Faith. In many of its aspects this campaign is reminiscent of the persecutions suffered by the early Baha'is, with this difference, however, that the prime movers and responsible authors of such acts are not primarily the members of the Shi'ah clergy, whose influence has greatly declined, but the members of the Shah's government. A group of unscrupulous and astute politicians, who are the determined enemies of the Faith in Persia, and are afraid of its growing influence, have succeeded at last in alienating the Shah and in arousing his suspicion. They have deliberately misrepresented all the facts to him, with the result that he has now lost absolute confidence in the friends, with the exception of those few who, due to their eminent services to the person of the Shah, still enjoy in some measure his confidence.

The first incident which led to this outburst of fierce antagonism on the part of the government was in connection with the Tarbiat Schools in Tihran. The school authorities having, after due consult anon with the National Spiritual Assembly and in strict conformity with the principle governing the observance of Baha'i holidays, decided to close the schools on the occasion of the celebration of the anniversary of the Bab's martyrdom, the authorities in the capital immediately issued orders that the schools be permanently closed, and that also no public meetings of any kind be held by the believers.

This has been done in spite of the fact that other religious communities, such as the Muslims and the Zoroastrians, are allowed to celebrate their own feasts, and as such enjoy full religious freedom. Similar orders were issued to the believers in all other parts of Persia, <p125> with the result that today the friends find their activities in Persia completely paralyzed. Their schools have all been definitely closed, their meetings suspended, their correspondence intercepted, and their assemblies and committees for the most part dissolved.

The situation, as it stands at present, is highly disconcerting. The friends, however, faithful to the injunctions of the Master regarding obedience to government in all administrative matters as distinguished from those affecting their conscience and loyalty to the Cause strictly adhere to the laws and orders of the government. Their sole hope is the assurance that in due time all these restrictions are bound to disappear...

In the meantime, the Guardian would urge all the friends to patiently and prayerfully wait until these sad happenings take their due course. For the history of the Cause, particularly in Persia, is a clear illustration of the truth that such persecutions invariably serve to strengthen the believers in their faith, by stimulating the spiritual powers latent in their hearts, and by awakening in them a new and deeper consciousness of their duties and responsibilities towards the Faith. Indeed, the mere progress of the Cause, by provoking the hatreds and jealousies of peoples and nations, creates for itself such difficulties and obstacles as only its divine spirit can overcome.

'Abdu'l-Baha has emphatically stated that the enmity and opposition of the world will increase in direct proportion to the extension and progress of the Faith. The greater the zeal of the believers and the more striking the effect of their achievements, the fiercer will be the opposition of the enemy.

Many are the passages in the writings of Baha'u'llah wherein He foreshadows the persecutions awaiting His Faith. But side by side with such emphatic predictions is the assurance that out of these sufferings and trials His Cause will emerge triumphant and purified. May we not, therefore, gather strength from such an assurance, and with hearts filled with confident and joyous hope arise to fulfil our part in the establishment of His Cause?

===================

June 27, 1935

Dear Siyyid Mustafa,

On behalf of the Guardian I wish to thank you most heartily for your welcome letter of the first instant with enclosures, all of which <p126> he has read with genuine interest and deepest appreciation.

The news of the success of the first all Burma Baha'i Convention held on April last in "'Abdu'l-Baha's Village" at Daidanaw has particularly rejoiced his heart, and imparted added strength and stimulus to his hopes concerning the future of the Cause in Burma. It is, indeed, quite splendid and fully indicative of the mysterious and all compelling power of the Faith that in the face of all the malignant opposition of the Muslim divines the friends in Burma should have succeeded in holding such an important and truly historic gathering. He hopes that now that the first step in that direction has been definitely taken it will be easier for the believers to organize such conferences in the future, specially with the help and cooperation of the Indian National Spiritual Assembly, which has contributed so much towards the success of this year's Convention.

From the enclosed report prepared by your Secretary the Guardian has learned with deep appreciation of the emphasis laid by the friends at the Convention of the importance of organizing the Baha'i school at Daidanaw. He trusts that the friends both in India and Burma will whole-heartedly respond to the Educational Committees appeal for raising the necessary funds for that purpose. He particularly values the financial assistance extended in this connection by the National Spiritual Assembly, and is confident that its example will be followed by the rest of the believers.

As to the name of the school, the Guardian would advise that this institution should be dedicated entirely to Abdu'l-Baha's name, as it was during his days that the village was first established. The new section that you are planning to open very soon for the teaching of English, Arabic and Urdu will, no doubt, be of an invaluable addition to the school's already rich record of service. The Guardian is specially praying on behalf of the new teacher of English that has been appointed to take charge of the new school by the name of Mohammad Iqbal Khan. He wishes him full success in this highly responsible task he has been appointed to perform.

With the assurance of his prayers on your behalf, and with his greetings to you and to all the friends in Mandalay and throughout Burma.

Dear and prized co-worker:

I am delighted with your recent achievements. At your advanced age you have truly performed a work which the Concourse on High will <p127> extol and magnify. I am enclosing the sum of £ 30 as my contribution for the school recently established. The friends in Burma have proved themselves - worthy of the great love and blessings our departed Master has lavished upon them. I will continue to pray for them from the depths of my grateful heart. To you, in particular, I feel greatly indebted. Kindly extend to all the friends in that far away county my love, my congratulations and abiding gratitude for their magnificent efforts.

Shoghi

===================

July 8,1935

Dear Mr. Butt,

I am directed by the Guardian to inform you of the receipt of your letter dated June 13th written on behalf of the Indian National Spiritual Assembly, and to convey to you his deepest thanks and appreciation for it. He wishes me, in particular, to offer you his hearty congratulations for having been elected as Secretary of the Indian National Spiritual Assembly-a function which he hopes you will adequately discharge, and for which, he feels confident, you will be amply rewarded. It is, indeed, a grave and weighty responsibility that has been placed upon your shoulders. But with the assistance of Baha'u'llah you will, no doubt, succeed in discharging it satisfactorily.

You should be confident, and also strive to do your best. In this way you can be certain of the success of your labours.

In the meantime the Guardian will specially supplicate for your guidance and assistance, and will ask Baha'u'llah to give you both the vision and the inspiration to promote and safeguard the interests of His Faith throughout India and Burma. With regard to the teaching outline you had enclosed, Shoghi Effendi has read it with interest and appreciation and wishes me to assure you of his wholehearted approval. The method you have adopted for the training of Baha'i teachers is, indeed, very similar to the one used by the American friends. It is very thorough, yet clear and highly effective. The Guardian trusts that the believers in India and Burma will make full use of your Assembly's suggestions and directions, and in this way help in inaugurating a new and effective teaching campaign throughout India and Burma.

Assuring you again f the Guardians deep felt appreciation of <p128> your labours, and with his cordial greetings and sincere good wishes to you and to your fellow members in the National Spiritual Assembly, as well as to all the friends in your centre.

Dear and valued co-worker:

I am deeply touched and feel truly grateful for the noble sentiments you have expressed in your letter, and welcome your appointment as national secretary to the representatives of the believers of India and Burma. The splendid and encouraging report of your annual Convention I have read with care, admiration and gratitude. The utmost effort should be increasingly exerted in order to ensure the full and uninterrupted execution of the decisions and resolutions arrived at by the national and elected representatives of the believers. I shall, from the depths of my heart, pray for their success. Persevere and never relax in your high and admirable endeavours. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi

===================

[To N.R. Vakil]

August 12, 1935

Beloved Baha'i Brother,

The Guardian wishes me to thank you for your letter dated July 18th written on behalf of the Indian National Spiritual Assembly, and also for the enclosed papers and documents, all of which he has carefully read and considered.

He has been particularly pleased and encouraged to receive the copy of the Certificate of Registration of the Karachi Baha'i Assembly, and is eagerly awaiting for the registration papers of the Delhi and Rangoon Spiritual Assemblies. He hopes that the National Spiritual Assembly will expedite the matter of legalizing all the Local Assemblies of India and Burma and in this way ensure the stability of the administrative institutions of the Cause in these two countries.

With regard to ... petition to the National Spiritual Assembly ... Shoghi Effendi wishes to urge once more your Assembly to give care fun and sympathetic consideration to this case ... The situation must be carefully studied, and all its aspects thoroughly investigated and a decision should be reached and fearlessly and immediately carried out. Too much delay does not only harm the interests of the petitioner <p129> but will, in addition, have the effect of distracting from the authority and prestige of your Assembly...

===================

October 8,1935

Dear Mr. Vakil,

The Guardian has directed me to thank you for your letter of the 13th of May last, and for the one dated September 23rd just received, both of which he has greatly enjoyed and appreciated reading.

He has been specially gratified to learn of the success of the last meeting of your National Spiritual Assembly, and of the important action that has been taken in connection with case. He is confident that the satisfactory settlement of this difficult issue, and the complete and immediate enforcement of the decisions reached by your Assembly in this matter, will serve to consolidate the foundations of your National Spiritual Assembly, and to greatly enhance its prestige in the eyes of the believers and of the general non-Baha'i public as well.

He is eagerly awaiting to read the National Secretary's report regarding this issue, and concerning various other matters that have been considered by the National Spiritual Assembly in its last session.

He is very pleased to learn that all the members have attended the meetings, with the exception of dear Mr. Hishmatu'llah who, he hopes, has by now fully recovered from his illness. Please convey to him his best wishes, and the assurance of his loving appreciation of his valuable work for the Cause in India.

May I also assure you of Shoghi Effendi's continued prayers for your health, and for each and every member of your dear family.

Dear and valued co-worker:

I am so glad to learn of the action which the National Assembly has taken regarding the case of... and I trust that the matter will be definitely and satisfactorily settled and in a manner that would reinforce the prestige and authority of your Assembly. I will pray for the expansion and consolidation of the activities of its members and rejoice to learn that the improved state of your precious health will enable you to enrich and extend the scope of their labours. Your true and grateful brother,

Shoghi