November 28, 2011

Less than five months before His ascension, ‘Abdu’l-Baha had beseeched God for release from this world

The night of July l0th 1921 'Abdu'l-Baha was on Mount Carmel by the Shrine of the Bab. There, He revealed a Tablet and a prayer in honour of a 'kinsman of the Bab', who had died recently. [He was the father of the Hand of the Cause Balyuzi, who had died in Tihran, on May 6th]. Abdu'l-Baha beseeched God, in that prayer, for His own release from this world. He spoke of His 'loneliness', of being 'broken-winged', 'submerged in seas of sorrows': 'O Lord! My bones are weakened, and the hoar hairs glisten on My head ... and I have now reached old age, failing in My powers ... No strength is there left in Me wherewith to arise and serve Thy loved ones ... O Lord, My Lord! Hasten My ascension unto Thy sublime Threshold ... and My arrival at the Door of Thy grace beneath the shadow of Thy most great mercy .. .'

That prayer was answered less than five months later. He passed away in the early hours of November 28th. The physician, who was summoned to His bedside at that hour, and closed His eyes, was Dr Florian Krug of New York, the same man who once bitterly resented the Faith of Baha'u'llah, and wanted alienists to examine his wife because of her intense devotion to it. He had now come, a pilgrim, with his wife [Grace], and 'Abdu'l-Baha had allocated them a room in the compound of His own house… Other Western pilgrims present in Haifa at that poignant hour were Louise and John Bosch from California, Ethel Rosenberg from London, and Fraulein Johanna Hauff from Stuttgart were the Western pilgrims present in Haifa at that poignant hour, as well as Curtis Kelsey from the United States, who was in Haifa to attend to electrical installations in the Shrine of the Bab. (Adapted from H.M. Balyuzi, ‘Abdu’l-Baha The Center of the Covenant of Baha’u’llah’, p. 452-463)