13. Service

  • Living Spiritual Life-13. Service Power Point
  • Living Spiritual Life-13. Service pdf
  • With Audio Narration
  • Goals:
  • Possible goals for service?

     

    Selflessly serve. Expand circle of service to encompass family, community, nation and humanity.

    Practice the Golden Rule.

    Use love, pure motives and excellence to the best of our ability for the greatest good.

    Think at all times of rendering service.

     

    Suggestions for achieving goals

     

    Set goals that are short-term, defined, achievable, measurable and rewardable.

    Associate with people who support your goals and are like minded.

    Make daily effort. Progress little by little, day by day. No pain, no gain.

    Treat prayer, meditation and reading like food; striving, service and teaching like exercise. They must be balanced.

     

  • Assignments
  • Assignment: Memorize and Meditate

     

    0 Son of Man! If thou lovestMe, turn, away from thyself, and if thou seekestMy pleasure, regard not thine own, that thou mayestdie in Me and I may eternally live in thee. (Baha’u’llah, The Arabic Hidden Words, #7)

     

     

    Assignment: Read and Study

    Read William S. Hatcher’s The Concept of Spirituality ,III. The Collective Dimension of Spirituality, 1. The Social Matrix of Individual Growth and 2. Unity (956-58), to get more and deeper background information for this and other modules.

     

    Assignment: Reflect, Set Goals Act, Consult, Repeat

     

    Reflect on how you can be of greater service to the Cause and in your work or profession. Set a goal to do greater service the next day/week. Do it. After you have done it, consult with others on how it felt, what you learned and how you might do better next time.

    Repeat the process.

     


 

 

Living a Spiritual Life:13. Service

 

Rodney H. Clarken  Copyright © 2011

 

Module objective

 

You will know how you can serve, be motivated to serve and arise to serve in the God and society.

 

Essential Requisite for Spiritual Growth

 

6. Selfless service in the work of the Cause and in the carrying on of our trade or profession.

 

 

Service: What is it?

The action of helping others (Dictionary).

Service in our work and Cause is a form of prayer and worship.

Noblest deed, greatest blessing and highest righteousness.

Service to humanity is service to God.

 

 

What is our duty?

Every Bahá’í has the duty to acquire a trade or profession through which he will earn that wherewith he can support himself and his family; in the choice of such work he can seek those activities which are of benefit to his fellow-men and not merely those which promote his personal interests, still less those whose effects are actually harmful. (Universal House of Justice, 11/19/74)

 

Why selfless service?

“Whensoeverye behold a person whose entire attention is directed toward the Cause of God; whose only aim is this, to make the Word of God to take effect; who, day and night, with pure intent, is rendering service to the Cause; from whose behavior not the slightest trace of egotism or private motives is discerned

 

–who, rather, wanderethdistracted in the wilderness of the love of God, and drinkethonly from the cup of the knowledge of God, and is utterly engrossed in spreading the sweet savoursof God, and is enamouredof the holy verses of the Kingdom of God–know ye for a certainty that this individual

 

will be supported and reinforced by heaven; that like unto the morning star, he will forever gleam brightly out of the skies of eternal grace. But if he show the slightest taint of selfish desires and self love, his efforts will lead to nothing and he will be destroyed and left hopeless at the last.” (Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p. 71)

What is our service?

 

“Beloved friends, the world moves deeper into the heart of darkness as its old order is rolled up. Pursuing our objectives with confidence, optimism, and an unshakeable resolve, we must never forget that our service is a spiritual one. Mankind is dying for lack of true religion and this is what we have to offer to humanity.

 

 

It is the love of God, manifest in the appearance of Bahá’u’lláh, which will feed the hungry souls of the world and eventually lead the peoples out of the present morass into the orderly, uplifting, and soul-inspiring task of establishing God’s Kingdom on earth. (Universal House of Justice, Ridván, 138)

When is service worship?

 

“In the Baha’i Cause arts, sciences and all crafts are (counted as) worship. …All effort 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 needs of the people. Service is prayer. (‘Abdu’l-Baha, Paris Talks, pp. 176-177)

 

Where to serve?

 

There is no general rule, or any particular standard requiring a believer to serve in one field, at the exclusion of others. Every believer is to choose for himself any avenue of work in which he conscientiously feels he can render the greatest amount of service to the Cause. (on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, 2/6/39)

 

Why serve?

 

The effects of prayer, meditation and reading are not significant unless translated into service.

It is essential to our personal welfare and spiritual growth. It is a magnet that brings success and confirmations.

 

What brings success?

 

There is nothing, that brings success in, the Faith like service. Service is the magnet which draws the Divine Confirmations. Thus, when a person is active, they are blessed by the Holy Spirit. When they are inactive, the Holy Spirit cannot find a repository in their being, and thus they are deprived of its healing and quickening rays. (on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, 7/12/52)

 

What greater destiny can we seek?

 

For what a greater destiny can you hope to seek except that which Bahá’u’lláh has traced for every one of His loyal believer, namely to consecrate one’s all to the service and glorification of His Faith! (on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, 1/30/39)

 

What profits us?

Man’s merit liethin service and virtue and not in the pageantry of wealth and riches….Dissipate not the wealth of your precious lives in the pursuit of evil and corrupt affection, nor let your endeavors be spent in promoting your personal interest…. Guard against idleness and sloth, and cling unto that which profitethmankind, whether young or old, whether high or low. (Baha’u’llah, Tablets of Baha’u’llah, 138)

What leads to happiness?

 

That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicatethhimself to the service of the entire human race. The Great Being saith: Blessed and happy is he that arisethto promote the best interests of the peoples and kindredsof the earth. (Baha’u’llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah, 250)

 

How is service like a plough?

…service in the Cause is like the plough which ploughs the physical soil when seeds are sown. It is necessary that the soil be ploughed up, so that it can be enriched, and thus cause a stronger growth of the seed. In exactly the same way the evolution of the spirit takes place through ploughingup the soil of the heart so that it is a constant reflection of the Holy Spirit. In this way the human spirit grows and develops by leaps and bounds. (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 70)

 

Why service to the Cause is important?

He feels that, although your desire to partake actively of the dangers and miseries afflicting so many millions of people today, is natural, and a noble impulse, there can be no comparison between the value of Bahá’í work and any other form of service to humanity. (on behalf of Shoghi Effendi in Principles of Bahai Administration, 24)

 

With what should we occupy ourselves?

 

It is enjoined upon each one of you to engage in some occupation, such as a craft, a trade or the like. We have exalted your engagement in such work to the rank of worship . . . Waste not your hours in idleness and sloth, but occupy yourselves with what will profit you and others. (Baha’u’llah, Kitab-i-Aqdas, v33)

 

Who should work?

 

Every individual, no matter how handicapped and limited he may be, is under the obligation of engaging in some work or profession, for work, especially when performed in the spirit of service, is according to Bahá’u’lláh a form of worship. It has not only a utilitarian purpose, but has a value in itself, because it draws us nearer to God, and enables us to better grasp His purpose for us in this world. (The Kitab-i-Aqdas, n. 56, p. 192)

 

How to overcome trials?

 

… An individual must center his whole heart and mind on service to the Cause, in accordance with the high standards set by Bahá’u’lláh. When this is done, the hosts of the Supreme Concourse will come to the assistance of the individual, and every difficulty and trial will gradually be overcome. (on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, 10/6/54)

 

 

What is the highest righteousness?

The highest righteousness of all is for blessed souls to take hold of the hands of the helpless and deliver them out of their ignorance and abasement and poverty, and with pure motives, and only for the sake of God, to arise and energetically devote themselves to the service of the masses, forgetting their own worldly advantage and working only to serve the general good. (Abdu’l-Baha, The Secret of Divine Civilization, p. 103)

 

How should we serve?

 

Let them perform their services with complete sanctity and detachment …in truthfulness, straightforwardness and the pursuit of virtue and excellence….To attain to true glory and honor, man should exercise justice and equity, forbear to act in an oppressive manner, render service to his government and work for the good of his fellow-citizens. (Abdul-Bahain Trustworthiness, 13)

 

How do we attain virtues?

 

Baha’u’llah has thereby encouraged action and stimulated service. But the energies of the heart must not be attached to these things; the soul must not be completely occupied with them. Though the mind is busy, the heart must be attracted toward the Kingdom of God in order that the virtues of humanity may be attained from every direction and source. (‘Abdu’l-Baha, The Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 187)

 

Possible goals for service?

 

Selflessly serve. Expand circle of service to encompass family, community, nation and humanity.

Practice the Golden Rule.

Use love, pure motives and excellence to the best of our ability for the greatest good.

Think at all times of rendering service.

 

Suggestions for achieving goals

 

Set goals that are short-term, defined, achievable, measurable and rewardable.

Associate with people who support your goals and are like minded.

Make daily effort. Progress little by little, day by day. No pain, no gain.

Treat prayer, meditation and reading like food; striving, service and teaching like exercise. They must be balanced.

 

Assignment: Memorize and Meditate

 

0 Son of Man! If thou lovestMe, turn, away from thyself, and if thou seekestMy pleasure, regard not thine own, that thou mayestdie in Me and I may eternally live in thee. (Baha’u’llah, The Arabic Hidden Words, #7)

 

 

Assignment: Read and Study

Read William S. Hatcher’s The Concept of Spirituality ,III. The Collective Dimension of Spirituality, 1. The Social Matrix of Individual Growth and 2. Unity (956-58), to get more and deeper background information for this and other modules.

 

Assignment: Reflect, Set Goals Act, Consult, Repeat

 

Reflect on how you can be of greater service to the Cause and in your work or profession. Set a goal to do greater service the next day/week. Do it. After you have done it, consult with others on how it felt, what you learned and how you might do better next time.

Repeat the process.

 

You have completed this module and the six essential requisites of spiritual growth. The next unit is

14. Fasting


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