This is Palu. She is Junia’s mum. She died awhile back, and when she did, I posted this series of anecdotes about her on Facebook with some quotes from the Baha’i Writings that I thought were applicable. (She was quite a character – are you ready?)
ONE – There was a Holy Day celebration – a picnic – my first year in Fiji. Most of us sat visiting/talking – but Palu was up watching the children play. Then I saw she was walking around the public park picking up all the old trash from the ground. Palu NEVER just sat still.
Let your acts be a guide unto all mankind, for the professions of most men, be they high or low, differ from their conduct. It is through your deeds that ye can distinguish yourselves from others. Through them the brightness of your light can be shed upon the whole earth.
TWO – Palu and I went to visit our good friend Victor who was in the hospital. Soon Palu was visiting the man in the bed beside him, a total stranger. Isa! She knew this man needed her herbal tonic as much as Victor did so she went to my house and brewed two large bottles for each of them.
Do not be content with showing friendship in words alone, let your heart burn with loving kindness for all who may cross your path
THREE – Palu LOVED to laugh and saw the humor in simple things. Here you see her on the far left, her face overcome with merriment.
If we are not happy and joyous at this season, for what other season shall we wait and for what other time shall we look?
FOUR – Palu was as blind to rank and status as anyone I’ve ever known. She walked up to the Deputy Prime Minister to thank him for something just as un-self-consciously as she brought a crazy homeless man with her to a meeting. She was absolutely the same in front of everyone she met.
He Who is your Lord, the All-Merciful, cherisheth in His heart the desire of beholding the entire human race as one soul and one body.
FIVE – Palu was simple, and the simplicity led people to underestimate her. I was present once when a visiting dignitary threw out a question to the group. This person totally ignored Palu’s correct response… and praised the very same answer from a more educated person later. Palu didn’t even notice – she was that humble.
Be ye anchored fast as the high mountains, be stars that dawn over the horizon of life, be bright lamps in the gatherings of unity, be souls humble and lowly in the presence of the friends, be innocent in heart.
SIX – When people stole things from Palu (this happened ALL the time) – she’d get sad, not angry.
Never become angry with one another. …. Love the creatures for the sake of God and not for themselves. You will never become angry or impatient if you love them for the sake of God.
SEVEN – Ok, I did see Palu angry one time – not at a person but at a store. She’d responded to a TV ad to buy various items for “only $1 down, (conditions apply)” She took her $1 to the store and they would not let her buy the item. She told us about it and called it “Bullshit!”
The best beloved of all things in My sight is Justice; turn not away therefrom if thou desirest Me, and neglect it not that I may confide in thee. By its aid thou shalt see with thine own eyes and not through the eyes of others, and shalt know of thine own knowledge and not through the knowledge of thy neighbor.
EIGHT – Palu, constantly on the go, got her wings clipped when her husband was bedridden and needed her constant care. This was a trial to her, but she faithfully cared for him for as long as she could, and she did not complain.
Know ye that trials and tribulations have, from time immemorial, been the lot of the chosen Ones of God and His beloved, and such of His servants as are detached from all else but Him.
NINE – About 3 years before her death Palu had a stroke and never recovered use of her right side. I expected she’d be very unhappy because she was now forced into such inactivity – but she was still cheerful and content, doing whatever little things she could.
Be generous in prosperity, and thankful in adversity
TEN – Here is where I stopped with the Palu stories, though I have plenty more: Because of Palu, I got my first wisps of understanding the divine Teaching that God’s love and tenderness surrounds the poor, and that the poor who endure patiently have a high spiritual station.
Be not troubled in poverty nor confident in riches, for poverty is followed by riches, and riches are followed by poverty. Yet to be poor in all save God is a wondrous gift, belittle not the value thereof, for in the end it will make thee rich in God, and thus thou shalt know the meaning of the utterance, “In truth ye are the poor,” and the holy words, “God is the all-possessing,” shall even as the true morn break forth gloriously resplendent upon the horizon of the lover’s heart, and abide secure on the throne of wealth.
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The vacation editions are for while I am traveling. Flora and Fauna will resume its regular weekly posts on 23 February 2017.
Happy week, everybody.
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