Spiritual Flight

Birds occupy a special place in spirituality:

“Those who bind themselves to a joy
Do the winged life destroy
But they who kiss the joy as it flies
Live in eternity’s sunrise.”

William Blake

Even humanity itself has been seen as a bird:

Two Wings of a Bird: The Equality of Women and Men

And when our spirit flags, when we are too aware of the material world, when hope takes a vacation:

“Ye are even as the bird which soareth, with the full force of its mighty wings and with complete and joyous confidence, through the immensity of the heavens, until, impelled to satisfy its hunger, it turneth longingly to the water and clay of the earth below it, and, having been entrapped in the mesh of its desire, findeth itself impotent to resume its flight to the realms whence it came. Powerless to shake off the burden weighing on its sullied wings, that bird, hitherto an inmate of the heavens, is now forced to seek a dwelling-place upon the dust. Wherefore, O My servants, defile not your wings with the clay of waywardness and vain desires, and suffer them not to be stained with the dust of envy and hate, that ye may not be hindered from soaring in the heavens of My divine knowledge.”


Bahá’u’lláh, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 327

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10 thoughts on “Spiritual Flight

  1. I’m not sure why Alex, but this moved me to tears. It is so beautiful both the words and the photo. The photo reminds me of the rainbow bee eaters that are on in Queensland, Australia where I lived by in the rainforest. I loved the birds there. So many and so colorful. I have always had great dreams of flying (in-my-sleep dreams) where I fly over vast areas of Earth and look down and see the world. They are so real that I often wake feeling like I’ve traveled. And I always wake feeling very happy and free. Thank you for reminding me of that. Hugs to you, Robin

  2. Your dreams brought on my remembrance of these words:

    “…those personages who in a single step have passed over the world of the relative and the limited, and dwelt on the fair plane of the Absolute, and pitched their tent in the worlds of authority and command — have burned away these relativities with a single spark, and blotted out these words with a drop of dew. And they swim in the sea of the spirit, and soar in the holy air of light. Then what life have words, on such a plane, that “first” and “last” or other than these be seen or mentioned! In this realm, the first is the last itself, and the last is but the first.”

    (Baha’u’llah, The Seven Valleys, p. 27)

  3. I agree with Robin, what a beautiful post Alex. I love the photo you chose to illistrate the article. Flying to me is being free. Free to apreciate the beauty in life’s treasures, free to accomplish my many goals and free to hear those four little words “I love you mommy” from my children. Yes I love flying:~)

  4. Thank you , Brandi, for such powerfully encouraging words!

    Your words, “I love you mommy”, carried me back to the meaning of love on this earthly existence–walking down a city street, having my Most Dear Mother whip out her hankie, swiftly apply some of her spittle, grab my little arm firmly, and take a swipe at something on my face.

    At the time, I had a strong displease for what I recall now with great fondness!

    ~ Alex

  5. Wow…- THANK YOU. What a wonderful picture! You portray the light that talks much better than my words – my heart passionately applauds and I humbly bow to you. Thank you, dear Alexander M Zoltai

  6. I loved your post!
    One time when I was in a very rough patch in my life, a friend of mine dedicated a song to me. This song was about the phoenix and how it can be reborn from its ashes and soar to the sky.
    I’m not sure where did this metafor come from, maybe greek mythology?
    Take care!

  7. thank you! i, too, was inspired by this post.

    i have to confess that one of the reasons why i haven’t investigated the baha’i much is because i have a problem with the language. something in your post whispered to me, well, if you don’t like the language, change it – don’t get caught in these appearances! so i did. i submit this with respect:

    “you are like the bird that soars through the big, wide sky, with the full force of its wings and with complete and joyous confidence. then, hungry, it turns back to water and earth. there, it is trapped by the mesh of desire and finds itself impotent to fly up again to where it came from. powerless to shake off the burden, that bird, a resident of the skies, is now forced to find a home in the dust. therefore, my friends, don’t burden your wings with the clay of distraction and empty desires, and don’t let the dust of envy and hate stain you, so that you are not hindered from soaring in the heavens of divine knowledge.”

  8. Isabella,

    The great-grandson of Bahá’u’lláh was left with the task of translating the original Persian and Arabic Writings into English. He’d been educated at Balliol in Oxford and made a decision to use a “Biblical” style. I have no issue with it ( raised by two ministers, mom and dad, and had two sisters who also became ministers [ the Bahá’í Faith has no clergy 😉 ] and find the English elevated and exalted, though I supremely understand a person’s aversion to it and I fully support your intention in making your “transliteration”!

    In another portion of the Bahá’í Writings, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Bahá’u’lláh’s son said this:

    Reveal then Thyself, O Lord, by Thy merciful utterance and the mystery of Thy divine being, that the holy ecstasy of prayer may fill our souls – a prayer that shall rise above words and letters and transcend the murmur of syllables and sounds – that all things may be merged into nothingness before the revelation of Thy splendor.

    (Compilations, Baha’i Prayers, p. 69)

    ~Alex

  9. Pingback: Transcending the Murmur « Our Evolution

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