Sunday, January 20, 2008

On the What Happens When a Branch Is Cut Off from the Tree: A Botanical Truth

The tree's vascular system draws the water up through the trunk and distributes it to the leaves.

The simile used by Momen in this discussion of the Baha'i Covenant is the vascular system of a tree. -gw

One of the most striking of the claims made by the Bahá'í Faith is that the religion is divinely protected from schism (Abdu'l-Baha, The Promise of Universal Peace, 455-6, Shoghi Effendi, The World Order of Baha'u'llah, 145). Clearly this statement does not mean that it is impossible to set up a group that rejects the authority of the head of the religion since that has happened on numerous occasions. What it appears to mean is that, although it is possible for some to set up an independent group and to call themselves Bahá'ís, that group is like a branch

that has been cut off from a tree - -although it may appear alive and verdant, eventually, because it is cut off from its source of life, it will wither and die.

{Photo: "A limb lopped by Fall's Snow," uploaded on October 11, 2005 by teece on flickr, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 Generic}

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