Dedication to the Sacredness of the Bahá’í Fund 

Compiled by the National Spiritual Assembly of Azerbaijan

The Golden Ring

Fundraising Projects

 

A project by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Azerbaijan inaugurated on Riḍván 2003

 

In April 1963, the Bahá’í Archives of the Bahá’í World Center in Haifa registered a very special contribution that was recorded on the pages of Bahá’í history as the first contribution made to the first elected Universal House of Justice.  The contribution was simple, elegant, and meaningful because it was part of someone’s family heirloom who must have offered it with loving detachment.  How sincere and deeply genuine the person must have been to make a historical mark as the first offering to the first Universal House of Justice.  The gift was a golden ring, offered by a believer in Azerbaijan, and sent to the Bahá’í World Center during difficult periods of religious intolerance in the Soviet Unions.  Just a few years before the members of the Bahá’í community had been executed, yet Azerbaijan’s Bahá’í community managed to fulfill its duties in deeds, and not words alone, and therefore become the first to make a formal contribution to the Supreme Body of the Universal House of Justice.  

 

The Universal House of Justice will be under the protection and the unerring guidance of God.  If that House of Justice shall decide unanimously, or by a majority, upon any question not mentioned in the Book, that decision and command will be guarded from mistake.                                                           -‘Abdu’l-Bahá

 

Indeed what honor the Azerbaijan Bahá’í community received in 1963 for the generations to come.  According to a member of the House of Justice who was elected in 1963, the golden ring was received with love and affection and preserved forever in the repositories of the Faith in the Most Holy Land.  When reflecting on this event that took place exactly forty years ago, and considering the difficulties, restrictions, risks involved, and economic limitations imposed on the friends during that period we gain a better appreciation on who our ancestors were, how they fulfilled their duties, and what community they left behind for us.  How blessed and fortunate we are, as members of the Azerbaijan Bahá’í community, for having such devoted, and faithful spirits assisting us today from the Abha-kingdom by their sacrifices and generosities which engraved a marvelous historical account on the pages of Azerbaijan history in 1963.

 

Today the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Azerbaijan calls the friends for a service of higher and more exhaled measure.  Since the inception of National Assembly in Azerbaijan in 1992, this community has actively exerted to establish itself and support its own activities in the areas of administration, teaching, training institute, external affairs, youth activity, maintenance of Bahá’í properties, community service, publishing trust, audio-visual, music, etc.  The financial support of the Bahá’í International Community was for the first few years the primary assistance in administering the activities; however, during the past ten years the community has wholeheartedly participated towards contributions on the local and national Bahá’í funds.

 

The Bahá’í institutions efforts during this period to provide Bahá’í spiritual education on contributions is indeed commendable.  The result is generous sacrifices leading to spiritual development, regular contributions, and prosperity of the Bahá’í community of Azerbaijan, which includes Baku, Balakhani, Sumgayit, Nakhjavan and other regions.  This enabled the National Assembly to take steps toward financial self-sufficiency from the International Bahá’í Community more than three years ago.  In a letter to the beloved Universal House of Justice, the National Assembly expressed ardent desire to be self-sufficient and the House of Justice, through its infinite grace and bounty, accepted the plea of the community.

 

With this project entitled “The Golden Ring” the National Assembly calls the friends to prepare for the next stage of development in the Local and National Bahá’í Fund.  Starting the new Bahá’í-year in April 2003, the Bahá’í community of Azerbaijan will not only try to continue supporting itself but make regular contributions to the Supreme Body.  No matter how small and tiny this contribution maybe at the beginning, and no matter how little our share of giving in the Path of God might look like, we are certain that it will attract the blessings of Bahá’u’lláh and confirm our services; protect our communities, raise our knowledge and vision; develop our spiritual powers; making our community a channel to defuse the fragrances of the love of God; and make Azerbaijan even more illuminated in the eyes of the world.

 

Let this be the crown of honor for this Bahá’í community, to once again become able to contribute to the beloved House of Justice as our ancestors did.  This is our destiny.  Let us show our readiness to serve the Cause in deeds!  When the members of the National Assembly of Bahá’ís of Azerbaijan visit the Holy Land in April 2003 to cast their votes on behalf of the Bahá’í community in Azerbaijan for the election of the House of Justice, they will take with them a contribution on behalf of the Bahá’í Community.  This contribution will be a symbolic gesture in remembrance of the Golden Ring send in 1963 marking the beginning of our regular contributions to that August Station in the years to come.

 

The Assembly prays that Bahá’u’lláh would look upon this community with the eyes of mercy, forgiveness, kindness and generosity accepting our contributions made with absolute unworthiness in His Path.

 

With much Bahá’í love,

National Spiritual Assembly of Bahá’ís of Azerbaijan 

 

October 28, 2002

 

A writer and a member of the Bahá’í community in Baku Mr. Salahaddin Ayyubov has recounted in his book, The Twin Manifestations, that the couple in this story are Mr. Bala Aqa Orujov and Mrs. Kubra Orujova who contributed the golden ring.  They lived in Baku and were relatives of ‘Alí-Akbar Nakhjavání and Izzet Orujova!

 

Year of Generosity

Project prepared by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Azerbaijan

26 February 2018

Dear Azerbaycani Brothers and Sisters in Spirit,


God has created us as a mirror to reflect His light, glory, and inner Beauty.  There is no other purpose for the creation of mankind, He say, but to know God and to worship God through a life of service for the betterment of the world.  Work and devoted service, He reveals in His Most Holy Book, is equal worshiping God.

The National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Azerbaijan hereby announces the 200 year anniversary of the birth of Bahá’u’lláh—the Savior of Mankind, which begins on October 21st 2017—the year of service, generosity, and sacrifice for the betterment of the Azerbaijan Republic.  We call upon every member of the Bahá’í community to engage all of their friends, relatives, neighbors, acquaintances, schoolmates, and friends from work regardless of their age, gender, race or religion to join hands with the community in utter sincerity and loyalty that is driven out genuine humility and love to generously contribute their time and energy to serve this nation.


This year will be recorded in our history as the year of generosity.  The friends must take a conscious effort to become more generous and break the boundary of generosity in their personal lives.  Without looking at this materialistic world around them they must practice giving everything they posses generously and sacrificially for the betterment of their neighborhoods, their society and their nation.  We must work with our selves and our children to end our fear of loss.  We must be like the sunshine that has no fear of shedding its light and warmth upon humanity, or the cloud that showers upon every living thing without fear of loss as we believe generosity is like a fountain that is always filled by invisible source.

“We must be like the fountain or spring that is continually emptying itself of all that it has and is continually being refilled from an invisible source. To be continually giving out for the good of our fellows undeterred by fear of poverty and reliant on the unfailing bounty of the Source of all wealth and all good—this is the secret of right living!”

--Shoghi Effendi

 

This is the year that every member of this community must arise and find the secret of right living by relying on the unfailing bounty of the Source of all wealth and all good, “without fear of poverty.”  We the Bahá’í of this generation must train our spirits to achieve this exalted goal and it all starts by serving our neighborhoods, our society, and our beloved nation.  What better bounty than finding in our spirit the joy of service.  In this regard, in the Secret of Divine Civilization ‘Abdu’l-Bahá says,

 

“Is any larger bounty conceivable than this, that an individual, looking within himself, should find that by the confirming grace of God he has become the cause of peace and well-being, of happiness and advantage to his fellow men? No, by the one true God, there is no greater bliss, no more complete delight.”

“If wealth is expended for the promotion of knowledge, the founding of elementary and other schools, the encouragement of art and industry, the training of orphans and the poor—in brief, if it is dedicated to the welfare of society—its possessor will stand out before God and man as the most excellent of all who live on earth and will be accounted as one of the people of paradise.”

--‘Abdu’l-Bahá

The National Assembly of Azerbaijan would like you to participate in this year of generosity and begin to meditate on how you can serve your community.  If you are a music teacher, start seeking talented children in your neighborhood to offer free classes to develop those children for the betterment of our society.  If you notice kids in your neighborhood whom you previously thought were wasting their time and were labeled as bad children, make an effort and gather them and talk to them.  Find out if they are willing to spend one hour a week to go through the books.  If you have a sick neighbor, bake them a cake and offer them love and generosity.  Maybe they need medication that you can buy for them.  If you are an accountant offer your help to your neighbors for free and for the sake of God.  Go visit your lost relatives and spend time with them.  Serve the Cause of God and call your Spiritual Assembly to ask what you could do to serve the Cause.  Do not occupy yourself by thinking what you can receive but occupy yourself by what you can offer with generosity.  Bahá’u’lláh assures us that by giving we gain.

“The future civilization envisaged by Bahá’u’lláh is a prosperous one, in which the vast resources of the world will be directed towards humanity’s elevation and regeneration.”

--The Universal House of Justice

 

For your reading and deepening on the subject of generosity and the instructions of Shoghi Effendi to find the secret of right living, the National Assembly of Azerbaijan is pleased to announce the release of a new Website called, “The Bahá’í Fund, Generosity, and the secret of right living” (www.bahaifond.az).  The website is in Azeri, Russian.  Please take time during this year of generosity and understand the underlying purpose of being generous in these words of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá,

 

“Is any larger bounty conceivable than this, that an individual, looking within himself, should find that by the confirming grace of God he has become the cause of peace and well-being, of happiness and advantage to his fellow men? No, by the one true God, there is no greater bliss, no more complete delight.”

--‘Abdu’l-Bahá

www.bahaifond.org

 

With warm Bahá’í greetings,

Secretary of the National Spiritual Assembly 

Everyone is Serving!

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