"Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.".
In 1911, `Abdu’l-Bahá was in Egypt for one year to recuperate from prison life and to prepare for his travels to the West. He travelled by ship to Europe. One day when `Abdu’l-Bahá was in Europe, he stayed in a town not far from Geneva. At the same time, Zillul-Sultan was in the same town. Zillul-Sultan was the oldest son of Nasirid-Din Shah and he would have been the heir of the throne if his mother had not been a woman outside of the Qajar family. Nevertheless, the sultan had prominent governmental position in Iran. His father, Nasirid-Din Shah, as you know, ordered the imprisonment of Bahá’u’lláh, His exile and was responsible for the ruthless killing of many Babis and Bahais. The sultan was also responsible for many Bahais being martyred, among them the King and the Beloved of Martyrs in Isfahan. So these two had caused a lot of suffering for `Abdu’l-Bahá and his family.
When the sultan was in the same town as `Abdu’l-Bahá, he noticed that there was another Persian (from the clothes) and he asked who that was. He was told it was `Abdu’l-Bahá and he asked to meet him. He was granted permission to meet `Abdu’l-Bahá. When they met, `Abdu’l-Bahá took him in his arms and said: "All that is of the past, Never think of it again." Then `Abdu’l-Bahá invited him sot spend the day with him. Think a moment about this. This was the sultan who had cause so much grief and hardship for the friends and
`Abdu’l-Bahá, and the Master says, never think of it again.
I beg Thee to forgive me, O my Lord, for every mention but the mention of Thee, and for every praise but the praise of Thee, and for every delight but delight in Thy nearness, and for every pleasure but the pleasure of communion with Thee, and for every joy but the joy of Thy love and of Thy good-pleasure, and for all things pertaining unto me which bear no relationship unto Thee, O Thou Who art the Lord of lords, He Who provideth the means and unlocketh the doors.
- The Bab
(Compilations, Baha'i Prayers, p. 79)
“We ought to show something greater than forgiveness in meeting the cruelties and stricture in our lives. To be hurt and to forgive is saintly, but far beyond this is the power to comprehend and not be hurt. This power we may have – acceptance without complaint – and it should become associated with our name. We ought never to be known to complain or lament. It is not that we make the best of things, but that we may find in everything, even in calamity itself, the germ of enduring wisdom. We ought not to resist the shocks and upheavals of life, nor run counter to obstacles, we ought never to be impatient. We ought to be as incapable of impatience as we would to revolt. This is not being so much ‘long suffering’ as a quiet awareness of the forces that operate in the hours, days or years of waiting and inactivity. Always we ought to move with the larger rhythm, the wider sweep towards our ultimate goal, in that complete acquiescence, that perfect accord which underlies the spirit of the Faith itself.”
-Written by Marjory Morten about The Greatest Holy Leaf, Bahiyyih Khanum: “The Passing of Bahiyyih Khanum” in ‘Crystalizations’, page 174.
In all religions the belief exists that the soul survives the death of the body. Intercessions are sent up for the beloved dead, prayers are said for their progress and for the forgiveness of their sins. If the soul perished with the body all this would have no meaning. Further, if it were not possible for the soul to advance towards perfection after it had been released from the body, of what avail are all these loving prayers, of devotion? (Abdu'l-Baha, Paris Talks, p. 89)