The sciences of today are bridges to reality; if then they lead not to reality, naught remains but fruitless illusion. By the one true God! If learning be not a means of access to Him, the Most Manifest, it is nothing but evident loss. It is incumbent upon thee to acquire the various branches of knowledge, and to turn thy face toward the beauty of the Manifest Beauty, that thou mayest be a sign of saving guidance amongst the peoples of the world, and a focal center of understanding in this sphere from which the wise and their wisdom are shut out, except for those who set foot in the Kingdom of lights and become informed of the veiled and hidden mystery, the well-guarded secret.


علومِ حاضره قنطرۀ حقیقت است پس اگر حقیقت میسّر نگردد از مجاز چه ثمر و اثر تَاللّهِ الْحقِّ إِنْ لَمْ یَکُنِ الْعُلُومُ سَبَبَاً لِلْوُصُولِ إِلَی الْمَعْلُومِ فَهِيَ خُسْرَانٌ مُبِینٌ

عَلَیْكَ بِتَحْصِیلِ الْعُلُومِ وَالتَّوَجُّهُ إِلَی الْجَمَالِ الْمَعْلُومِ حَتَّی تَکُونَ آیَةَ الْهُدَی بَیْنَ الْوَرَی وَمَرْکَزَ النُّهَی فِي هَذِهِ الدَّائِرَةِ الَّتِي تَاهَتْ فِیهَا عُقُولُ ذَوِي الْحِجَی إِلَّا مَنْ فَازَ بِالْأَسْرَارِ وَدَخَلَ فِي مَلَکُوتِ الْأَنْوَارِ وَاطَّلَعَ بِالسِّرِّ الْمَصُونِ وَالرَّمْزِ الْمَکْنُونِ

حضرت عبدالبهاء

The Utterance Project is excited to publish this selection 109 years to the day since ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s address in Palo Alto at Stanford University (the heart of “the sciences of today” in our day), where He addressed an audience of 2,000 people on 8 October 1912. Although we could not do a video featuring the words from that specific talk, since an original text is not available, we thought it would be fitting nonetheless to commemorate this particular anniversary by publishing a thematically similar selection.

Original Sources

  • The source for the original Arabic and Persian text can be found here
  • The source for the English translation can be found here

Further References