"Turn all your thoughts toward bringing joy to hearts."
The Bahá'í writings contain many volumes of advice on how to live our lives. It is hoped that the few brief quotations which are shared here will give help and inspiration to those who read them.
"Man is, in reality, a spiritual being, and only when he lives in the spirit is he truly happy."
"The world is but a show, vain and empty, a mere nothing, bearing the semblance of reality. Set not your affections on it."
"He who has reached the state of self-sacrifice has true joy."
"Arise, O people, and by the power of God's might, resolve to gain the victory over your own selves."
Love One Another
"The best way to thank God is to love one another."
"When a man turns his face to God, he finds sunshine everywhere. All men are his brothers."
"Shed the light of boundless love on every human being whom you meet."
"Let each of God's loved ones centre his attention on this: to be the Lord's mercy to man; to be the Lord's grace. Let him do some good to every person whose path he crosseth, and be of some benefit to him."
"Show forbearance and benevolence and love to one another."
"O Son of Man! Breathe not the sins of others as long as thou thyself art a sinner."
"Look not upon the creatures of God except with the eye of kindliness and mercy."
"Beware lest ye offend the feelings of anyone, or sadden the heart of any person, or move the tongue in reproach of, and finding fault with anybody..."
"Be vigilant, that ye may not do injustice to any one, be it to the extent of a grain of mustard seed."
"Lay not on any soul a load which ye would not wish to be laid upon you, and desire not for anyone the things ye would not desire for yourselves."
"If you wish to give admonition or advice, let it be offered in such a way that it will not burden the hearer."
"Take heed, O people, lest ye be of them that give good counsel to others, but forget to follow it themselves."
Unity and Harmony
"Consort with all men, O people of Baha, in a spirit of friendliness and fellowship."
"The diversity in the human family should be the cause of love and harmony, as it is in music where many different notes blend together in the making of a perfect chord."
"If any differences arise amongst you, behold Me standing before your face, and overlook the faults of one another for My name's sake, and as a token of your love..."
"I charge you that when a thought of war comes, oppose it by a stronger thought of peace. A thought of hatred must be destroyed by a more powerful thought of love."
"You must have infinite love for each other, each preferring the other before himself."
"Charity is beloved and acceptable before God, and is accounted the chief of goodly deeds."
"We should all visit the sick. When they are in sorrow and suffering it is a real help and benefit to have a friend come."
"Be ye trustworthy on earth, and withhold not from the poor the things given unto you by God through His grace."
"Believers must show their belief in their daily lives, so that the world might see the light shining in their faces. A bright and happy face cheers people on their way."
"All efforts and exertion put forth by man from the fullness of his heart is worship, if it is prompted by the highest motives and the will to do service to humanity. This is worship: to serve mankind and to minister to the people."
"Strive that your actions day by day may be beautiful prayers."
Serve the Whole World
"It is not his to boast who loveth his country, but it is his who loveth the world."
"O people of God! Do not busy yourselves with your own concerns; let your thoughts be fixed upon that which will rehabilitate the fortunes of mankind and sanctify the hearts and souls of men."
"That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicateth himself to the service of the entire human race."
"Be generous in prosperity and thankful in adversity. Be worthy of the trust of thy neighbour, and look upon him with a bright and friendly face. Be a treasure to the poor, an admonisher to the rich, an answerer of the cry of the needy, a preserver of the sanctity of thy pledge. Be fair in thy judgement and guarded in thy speech. Be unjust to no man and show all meekness to all men. Be as a lamp unto them that walk in darkness, a joy to the sorrowful, a sea for the thirsty, a haven for the distressed, an upholder and defender of the victim of oppression. Let integrity and uprightness distinguish all thine acts. Be a home for the stranger, a balm to the suffering, a tower of strength for the fugitive. Be eyes to the blind, and a guiding light unto the feet of the erring. Be an ornament to the countenance of truth, a crown to the brow of fidelity, a pillar of the temple of righteousness, a breath of life to the body of mankind, an ensign of the hosts of justice, a luminary above the horizon of virtue, a dew to the soil of the human heart, an ark on the ocean of knowledge, a sun in the heaven of bounty, a gem on the diadem of wisdom, a shining light in the firmament of thy generation, a fruit upon the tree of humility."
A True Bahá'í
"Let your acts be a guide unto all mankind, for the professions of most men, be they high or low, differ from their conduct. It is through your deeds that you can distinguish yourselves from others."
"You must become distinguished in all the virtues of the human world; for faithfulness and sincerity; for justice and fidelity; for firmness and steadfastness; for philanthropic deeds and service to the human world; for love toward every human being; for unity and accord with all people; for removing prejudices and promoting international peace."
"Should any one of you enter a city, he should become a centre of attraction by reason of his sincerity, his faithfulness and love, his honesty and fidelity, his truthfulness and loving-kindness towards all the peoples of the world, so that the people of that city may cry out and say: 'This..is unquestionably a Bahá'í...'"
Published by, and copyright of, the Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of Warwick.
Approved by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of the United Kingdom,
27 Rutland Gate, London, SW7 1PD.
All quotations are from the Bahá'í writings.
Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holders