Baha'i Library Online

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COLLECTIONProvisional translations
TITLEA Passage from the Kitáb-i-Badí' on Ostensible Contradictions in the Writings
AUTHOR 1 Bahá'u'lláh
CONTRIB 1Adib Masumian, trans.
ABSTRACTUsing an example from the Bahá’í Writings, Bahá’u’lláh rejects the idea that sacred texts contain contradictions, instead emphasizing their fundamental coherence and unity, and affirming that any perceived contradictions stem from our limited capacity.
NOTES Mirrored with permission from, which includes a typescript of the original Persian and Arabic text.

See also a provisional translation of a short statement on page 62 of the same book here.

TAGSContradictions; Kitáb-i-Badi (Wondrous Book)
About: What follows is my provisional translation (in other words, not official or authorized; see here for more) of a passage from the Kitáb-i-Badí‘ of Bahá’u’lláh, which appears on p. 198 of Bahá’í-Verlag’s printing of that book, published in 2008. [-A.M., 2024]

It is hoped that everyone may, after coming together through God’s all-encompassing Word, occupy themselves with His mention and praise, appearing in this world with the utmost detachment, and becoming so enkindled with the fire of divine love that all others may be set ablaze by its heat and moved to fix their gaze upon the Court of Holiness.

Let whatever is not understood from the verses of God be asked of their Source and Origin. The intent of this statement is to warn, lest the loved ones of God fall into disputes over the meanings of those words. Let them know, moreover, that all the words of God proceed from a single point and refer to it. Beware lest ye perceive any contradictions in them. Though outwardly they may appear to have been revealed in conflict with one another, yet inwardly they refer to and culminate in one Word and a single Point.

In certain instances, it hath been mentioned that none is aware of the meanings of the divine Words but God Himself. There is no doubt that this statement is the truth, inasmuch as each word revealed in every realm of God’s infinite realms hath had, and will continue to have, a particular effect and specific meanings according to the exigencies of that realm. Similarly, each and every one of the letters and words of God hath been and will remain a trove of divine knowledge, whose treasures are inscrutable to all else save God. No one hath been, or shall ever be, able to comprehend them befittingly.

At the same time, it hath elsewhere been said that all are capable of understanding the verses of God, for if those verses did not possess this station, they could not serve as clear proofs.

To outward seeming, these two statements are contradictory, but in the estimation of the discerning and them that are endued with keen sight, it is evident that what is meant by having stated that all are capable of such understanding is that this applieth in proportion to their limited capacity, not in accordance with the full measure of what hath been revealed by God, the Most Powerful, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting.

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