Physical and spiritual power
November 3, 2008

Have you ever forgotten something really important in your life? We may forget birthdays or anniversaries, but would anyone forget how much they have in the bank?

Our life is totally dependent on money, but only up to a point, because, as the saying goes, you can’t take it with you.

The Egyptian Pharaohs certainly didn’t take anything with them. They spent their lives accumulating gold and building magnificent pyramids, planning for an eternity of luxury. Imagine their disappointment when 3,000 years on, their gold, far from being of any use to them, is on display in museums all around the world. It wasn’t quite how they planned it.

Their staggering belief in the immortality of material things made them think they were building an eternal existence.  But in reality they were creating a material civilisation that soon perished.

Bahá’u’lláh, Founder of the Bahá’í Faith, suggests building a more balanced civilisation – a Divine Civilisation, which is made up using both material and spiritual means.

In the Bahá’í Writings we read: “For man two wings are necessary. One wing is physical power and material civilisation; the other is spiritual power and divine civilisation. With one wing only, flight is impossible.”

Imagine a bird forgetting to use one of its wings, flapping about on the ground using only one wing! Yet many of us live our lives using only the wing of materialism. No wonder we sometimes feel grounded!

For me, this is where religion comes in. Not the rituals and traditions that are passed down and blindly followed through generations, but a sense of the sacred and divine that lifts us when we’re feeling like a bird with a broken wing.

Bahá’u’lláh writes: “I am the Sun of Wisdom and the Ocean of knowledge. I cheer the faint and revive the dead. I am the Royal Falcon on the arm of the Almighty. I unfold the drooping wings of every broken bird and start it on its flight.”

I like the idea of a religion that instead of clipping your wings, inspires you to spread your wings and soar heavenward.

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