A Huqquq Seminar
By John Taylor; 2008 March 31, 11 Baha, 165 BE
"The rich man's wealth is his strong city, like an unscalable wall in his own imagination." (Prov 18:11, WEB)
Last night we attended in St. Catherines a deepening on the law of the Huqququ'llah, run by our regional trustee, David Wiggins, a certified accountant. He used question and answer, followed by the "study circle" institute method. The many technical provisions of Huqquq prompted from the get-go a flurry of queries about how to calculate payment of Huqquq. David gave his own answers, and they were soon supplemented by later reading and discussion of his selection of quotes from Baha'u'llah.
Our Smithville/Dunnville contingent had to leave early, but David is kindly offering to bring this seminar to Dunnville, as well as anywhere in
The sacredness of the Right of God teaches what rights are. If we ignore God's right, how will humanity respect human rights, much less the non-obvious right of nature not to be polluted and degraded?
Everything boils down to purity.
The products of industry are mixed with impurities, like our water supply. We dump massive quantities of drugs, illegal, prescription and non-prescription, as well as thousands of toxic chemicals, into a primitive sewage system that eventually puts it all into the water table. Trace elements of everything from heroine to Viagra are turning up in tap water, doing unknown harm to plants, animals and humans all of which have no choice but drink increasingly dirty water.
Today money is just as adulterated, grungy, false, contaminated, dirty to the touch. We can purify our own fortune by paying Huqquq. The law acts as a water purification plant not only to our wealth, but ultimately to the entire money supply. Yes, the right of God has a spiritual effect, but also it sets in motion a literal purification process, since part of the money is spent righting structural wrongs against the poor, the part of humanity that comes first in the estimation of God. Blessed are the poor.
One participant was especially conscious of the impurity that exploitation, drug money, arms manufacture and slave labor introduce into our money supply. As an example, she told how she had traveled in the American Deep South and visited a beautiful garden built on an island. Walking through these tranquil surroundings she suddenly felt bitterly conscious that this entire panorama was been built by slaves. Slave labor from the ground up. It was still beautiful, but that knowledge changed everything. Life can be a pleasure, objects can be lovely, but still tainted. A few years ago, another legal attempt in the
Tainted is how Naomi Klein in "No Logo" predicted people would feel looking at logos and brand names like Nike. Organizations that openly exploit cheap labor in the third world are the modern slavers. Their products are good, cheap and trendy, but still tainted. Abdu'l-Baha called the modern taint of exploitation "industrial slavery," and considered it morally no better than the chattel slavery that built the massive fortunes of the American south. All wealth is polluted by power mongering and exploitation.
The law of God says it: the more people who pay God His due, the Huqquq, the more wrongs like slavery will be expiated and put into the past. Like Jesus’ sacrifice of His life, this is blood money that contributes to the salvation of all humanity. When the law of Huqquq is universal, economic life will cease being sullied by satanic exploitation. Baha'u'llah points out the source of "heart pollution," the fact that we too easily fall in love with worldly desires. He says,
"Even as the swiftness of lightning ye have passed by the Beloved One, and have set your hearts on satanic fancies. Ye bow the knee before your vain imagining, and call it truth." (PHW 45)
One person frankly shared what can only be called "sticker shock" when looking at a small bank savings account and realizing that 19 percent of it had to be paid to Huqquq. Several suggestions were made. For one thing, it is in the spirit of the Huqquq to make regular payments. One participant came into an inheritance, and having paid regularly through the years, although usually not "qualified" to do so because of its exemptions, found that Huqquq on the entire windfall was already paid. Thus there was no testing of that person's detachment.
Instead of writing during this migraine weather I have been listening over and over to a song called "La mer." I think it should be made the anthem for any future world government, since all life comes from the sea. A pure ocean, the
And so would God, if we let Him, if we gave Him His due in Huqquq and expiated the wrongs we have done the poor through the ages. We must call a spade a spade, and call vain imaginations about wealth and freedom what they are, filth, and with this holy law set in motion divinely constructed mechanisms to purify it.
"The name of Yahweh is a strong tower: The righteous run to him, and are safe." (Prov 18:10, WEB)
For two more essays from this blog on the law of Huqquq see:
Huqquq; Canadian Sovereignty, I, God's Right, 2007 September 1,
Standing Up for God's Right -- Sweet Spot of Happiness Series, 2005, August 4,