Daily Photo Project

The Project: In 2000, I wrote a poem each day for a year as a personal project to find beauty in the world around me. Now, 21 years later, I could do with some more art and beauty in my life. Most quotations are from the Bahá’í Writings. Format inspired by the nineteen day blog, and subsequent nineteen months website.

The Photos & Camera: Counterintuitively, constraints and limits can improve creativity and life in general. For this project, all photos are taken on an iPhone 6s, using only the stock Camera app. No filters are used, apart from the occasional “Mono” when I want to go for a black and white image. I’ll adjust the light and use the zoom (barely). These are set before taking the picture. Post-edits include cropping if needed… and that’s it. This simplicity helps me focus on the subject and the associated spiritual theme. “Instagram worthy” isn’t the objective.

Attributions: All photos are by Jeffrey Anvari-Clark. Note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License. Creative Commons License

barren

“Unless these divine bestowals be revealed from the inner self of humankind, the bounty of the Manifestation will prove barren, and the dazzling rays of the Sun of Truth will have no effect whatever.“ – Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l‑Bahá

autumn

“In this material world, time has changing cycles and place is subject to varying conditions. Seasons follow one another and individuals progress, regress, and develop. At one point it is springtime and at another the autumn season; at one point it is summer and at another it is winter.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Some Answered Questions

tarry

“O Son of Being!Thy Paradise is My love; thy heavenly home, reunion with Me. Enter therein and tarry not. This is that which hath been destined for thee in Our kingdom above and Our exalted dominion.“ – Bahá’u’lláh, The Hidden Words

inconsistent

“For such, today, is the manner of the divines and doctors of the age, who occupy the seats of knowledge and learning, and who have named ignorance knowledge, and called oppression justice. Were these to ask the Light of Truth concerning those images which their idle fancy hath carved, and were they to find His… Read More

leaves

“O My handmaiden, O My leaf! Render thou thanks unto the Best-Beloved of the world for having attained this boundless grace at a time when the world’s learned and most distinguished men have remained deprived thereof. We have designated thee “a leaf” that thou mayest, like unto leaves, be stirred by the gentle wind of… Read More

swirl

(on hiatus)

abundance

“The Spirit breathing through the Holy Scriptures is food for all who hunger. God Who has given the revelation to His Prophets will surely give of His abundance daily bread to all those who ask Him faithfully.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Paris Talks

eggs

“His [Nabíl of Qá’in] means of livelihood was his business partnership with me. That is, I provided him with a capital of three krans;3 with it he bought needles, and this was his stock-in-trade. The women of Nazareth gave him eggs in exchange for his needles and in this way he would obtain thirty or… Read More

haze

“When the sun rises, no matter from what dawning point on the horizon it appears—northeast, east, southeast—the haze and mists disperse, and we have clear vision of its glory mounting to the zenith.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Promulgation of Universal Peace

transcend

“O Lord! Thou beholdest this lifeless one before Thy face; suffer him, through Thy generosity and bountiful favor, not to be deprived of the chalice of immortal life. And Thou seest this afflicted one standing before Thy throne; turn him not away from the ocean of Thy healing. I entreat Thee to enable me at… Read More

House of Worship

“Blessed is he who, at the hour of dawn, centering his thoughts on God, occupied with His remembrance, and supplicating His forgiveness, directeth his steps to the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár and, entering therein, seateth himself in silence to listen to the verses of God, the Sovereign, the Mighty, the All-Praised. Say: The Mashriqu’l-Adhkár is each and every… Read More

disjointed

“Adversity, prolonged, worldwide, afflictive, allied to chaos and universal destruction, must needs convulse the nations, stir the conscience of the world, disillusion the masses, precipitate a radical change in the very conception of society, and coalesce ultimately the disjointed, the bleeding limbs of mankind into one body, single, organically united, and indivisible.“ – Shoghi Effendi,… Read More

coming

“Say, O friends! Suffer not yourselves to be far removed from the ocean of heavenly grace. He is come astonishingly near unto you. He Who had been concealed from men’s eyes is now come. How good is His coming! In one hand He is carrying the water of life, and in the other the charter… Read More

field

Lord! Pitiful are we, grant us Thy favor; poor, bestow upon us a share from the ocean of Thy wealth; needy, do Thou satisfy us; abased, give us Thy glory. The fowls of the air and the beasts of the field receive their meat each day from Thee, and all beings partake of Thy care… Read More

west

“The West has always received spiritual enlightenment from the East. The Song of the Kingdom is first heard in the East, but in the West the greater volume of sound bursts upon the listening ears.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Paris Talks

yearning

Say: Magnified art Thou, O Lord my God! I entreat Thee by the tears Thy lovers have shed in their longing after Thee, and by the yearning of those who cry out in their separation from Thee, and by Thy Best-Beloved Who hath fallen into the hands of Thine adversaries, to graciously assist those who… Read More

support

“O Lord! I am single, alone and lowly. For me there is no support save Thee, no helper except Thee and no sustainer beside Thee. Confirm me in Thy service, assist me with the cohorts of Thine angels, make me victorious in the promotion of Thy Word and suffer me to speak out Thy wisdom… Read More

lone

“How many times have the deeds of a few believers—young or old—or of a single family, or even of a lone soul, when confirmed by the power of divine assistance, succeeded in cultivating vibrant communities in seemingly inhospitable climes? Do not imagine that your own case is inherently any different.“ – The Universal House of… Read More

mother

“Ye should consider the question of goodly character as of the first importance. It is incumbent upon every father and mother to counsel their children over a long period, and guide them unto those things which lead to everlasting honor.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l‑Bahá

thistles

“A true cultivator changes this forest and jungle into a garden, training its trees to bring forth fruit and causing flowers to grow in place of thorns and thistles. The holy Manifestations are the ideal Gardeners of human souls, the divine Cultivators of human hearts. The world of existence is but a jungle of disorder… Read More

all

“Let all associate, therefore, in this great human garden even as flowers grow and blend together side by side without discord or disagreement between them.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Promulgation of Universal Peace

books

“In former religions such ordinances as holy war, destruction of books, the ban on association and companionship with other peoples or on reading certain books had been laid down and affirmed according to the exigencies of the time; however, in this mighty Revelation, in this momentous Announcement, the manifold bestowals and favors of God have… Read More

statement

“This statement is prompted by truth and fairness; otherwise it is clear that in this day the world is being illumined by the splendours of that Sun which hath dawned above the horizon…“ – Bahá’u’lláh, The Tabernacle of Unity

observe

“The essence of true safety is to observe silence, to look at the end of things and to renounce the world.” – Bahá’u’lláh, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh

horse

(On hiatus)

alone

Thoughts are a boundless sea, and the effects and varying conditions of existence are as the separate forms and individual limits of the waves; not until the sea boils up will the waves rise and scatter their pearls of knowledge on the shore of life. Thou, Brother, art thy thought alone, The rest is only… Read More

grass

“Within every blade of grass are enshrined the mysteries of an inscrutable Wisdom, and upon every rosebush a myriad nightingales pour out, in blissful rapture, their melody.“ – Bahá’u’lláh, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh http://www.bahai.org/r/946347868

handle

“I am Thy servant and the son of Thy servant, O my God! I have laid hold on the handle of Thy grace, and clung to the cord of Thy tender mercy. Ordain for me the good things that are with Thee, and nourish me from the Table Thou didst send down out of the… Read More

awake

O lifeless one, bereft of heart and soul, Come to life, come thou to life! O slumbering one, wrapt in mire and clay, Awake, do thou awake! O drunken one, so dazed and gone astray, Clear thy mind, clear thou thy mind! The world is filled with sweetest musk; the eyes are brightened with His… Read More

warning

“I never passed a tree but Mine heart addressed it saying: “O would that thou wert cut down in My name, and My body crucified upon thee.” We revealed this passage in the Epistle to the Sháh that it might serve as a warning to the followers of religions. Verily, thy Lord is the All-Knowing,… Read More

distance

“They that have truly recognized the Unity of God should be regarded as the primary manifestations of this Name. It is they who have quaffed the wine of Divine Unity from the cup which the hand of God hath proffered unto them, and who have turned their faces towards Him. How vast the distance that… Read More

forget

“Happy the soul that shall forget his own good, and like the chosen ones of God, vie with his fellows in service to the good of all; until, strengthened by the blessings and perpetual confirmations of God, he shall be empowered to raise this mighty nation up to its ancient pinnacles of glory, and restore… Read More

community

“There are many ways of expressing the love principle; there is love for the family, for the country, for the race, there is political enthusiasm, there is also the love of community of interest in service. These are all ways and means of showing the power of love. Without any such means, love would be… Read More

diverse

“Consider the world of created beings, how varied and diverse they are in species, yet with one sole origin. All the differences that appear are those of outward form and color. This diversity of type is apparent throughout the whole of nature.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Paris Talks

investigate

“Another new principle revealed by Bahá’u’lláh is the injunction to investigate truth—that is to say, no man should blindly follow his ancestors and forefathers. Nay, each must see with his own eyes, hear with his own ears and investigate the truth himself in order that he may follow the truth instead of blind acquiescence and… Read More

relaxation

“It—the body—is like a horse which carries the personality and spirit, and as such should be well cared for so it can do its work! You should certainly safeguard your nerves, and force yourself to take time, and not only for prayer and meditation, but for real rest and relaxation. We don’t have to pray… Read More

hat

Knowledge, purity, devotion, discipline, independence, have nothing to do with outer appearance and dress. Once in the course of My travels I heard an eminent personage make the following excellent remark, the wit and charm of which remain in memory: “Not every cleric’s turban is a proof of continence and knowledge; not every layman’s hat… Read More

sunrise

“The physical sun has its rising and its setting. The earthly world has its day and its night. After each sunset there is a sunrise and the coming of a new dawn. The Sun of Reality, likewise, has its rising and setting. There is a day and a night in the world of spirituality. After… Read More

emerge

“O My Friend!Thou art the daystar of the heavens of My holiness, let not the defilement of the world eclipse thy splendor. Rend asunder the veil of heedlessness, that from behind the clouds thou mayest emerge resplendent and array all things with the apparel of life.“ Bahá’u’lláh, The Hidden Words, #73 from the Persian

horizon

“Blessed art thou and are they whom the world and its vanities have failed to deter from this luminous Horizon.“ – Bahá’u’lláh, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh

construction

“The attainment of any object is conditioned upon knowledge, volition and action. Unless these three conditions are forthcoming, there is no execution or accomplishment. In the erection of a house it is first necessary to know the ground, and design the house suitable for it; second, to obtain the means or funds necessary for the… Read More

study

“It is permissible to study sciences and arts, but such sciences as are useful and would redound to the progress and advancement of the people. Thus hath it been decreed by Him Who is the Ordainer, the All-Wise.“ – Bahá’u’lláh, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh

inclusive

“Thus, the divine Manifestations of God had a universal and all-inclusive conception. They endeavored for the sake of everyone’s life and engaged in the service of universal education. The area of their aims was not limited—nay, rather, it was wide and all-inclusive.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l‑Bahá

parched

Would that the hearts of men could be cleansed from these manmade limitations and obscure thoughts imposed upon them! haply they may be illumined by the light of the Sun of true knowledge, and comprehend the mysteries of divine wisdom. Consider now, were the parched and barren soil of these hearts to remain unchanged, how… Read More

nest

“O Breakwell, O my dear one! Thou art now a bird of Heaven, thou hast quit thine earthly nest, and soared away to a garden of holiness in the kingdom of thy Lord. Thou hast risen to a station filled with light.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l‑Bahá, in an ode to Thomas… Read More

banks

O zephyr, shouldst thou pass by the banks of the Araxes, Implant a kiss on the earth of that valley and make fragrant thy breath. – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, quoting Ḥáfiẓ of Shíráz in Additional Tablets, Extracts and Talks

river

“Be thou as a flame of fire to My enemies and a river of life eternal to My loved ones, and be not of those who doubt.“ – Bahá’u’lláh, Bahá’í Prayers

rise

O Son of Man!Put thy hand into My bosom, that I may rise above thee, radiant and resplendent. – Bahá’u’lláh, The Hidden Words, #60 from the Arabic

exercise

“God has created mankind from the same progeny in order that they may associate in good fellowship, exercise love toward each other and live together in unity and brotherhood.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Promulgation of Universal Peace

sublimation

“But according to the evidence of present world conditions divine philosophy—which has for its object the sublimation of human nature, spiritual advancement, heavenly guidance for the development of the human race, attainment to the breaths of the Holy Spirit and knowledge of the verities of God—has been outdistanced and neglected.“ – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Promulgation of… Read More

108

– 108 – Ye should consider the question of goodly character as of the first importance. It is incumbent upon every father and mother to counsel their children over a long period, and guide them unto those things which lead to everlasting honor. – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l‑Bahá, #108

welcome

“‘Abdu’l‑Bahá: Yes! This is the day of Bahá’u’lláh, the age of the Blessed Perfection, the cycle of the Greatest Name. If you do not smile now, for what time will you await and what greater happiness could you expect? This is the springtime of manifestation. The vernal shower has descended from the cloud of divine… Read More

interrupt

“Say: Nothing can withstand the power of Our might or interrupt the course of Our command. We exalt whomsoever We please unto the Realm of supernal might and glory, and, should We so desire, cause the same to sink into the lowest abyss of degradation.“ – Bahá’u’lláh, The Summons of the Lord of Hosts

image

“Thereafter have We raised Thee up in Our own image betwixt the heavens and the earth, and ordained Thee to be the sign of Our glory unto all who are in the realms of revelation and creation, that My servants may follow in Thy footsteps, and be of them who are guided aright.“ – Bahá’u’lláh,… Read More

integrated

“Success will depend on the manner in which lines of action are integrated and on the attitude of learning that is adopted.“ – The Universal House of Justice, 9 January 2001 – To the Conference of the Continental Boards of Counselors Artwork by Rich Patterson. ISP, 2009, spray paint on canvas. (Commissioned for the Integrated Studies… Read More

end

“There can be no doubt whatever that if for one moment the tide of His mercy and grace were to be withheld from the world, it would completely perish. For this reason, from the beginning that hath no beginning the portals of Divine mercy have been flung open to the face of all created things,… Read More

table

“Blessed the insatiate soul who casteth away his selfish desires for love of Me and taketh his place at the banquet table which I have sent down from the heaven of divine bounty for My chosen ones.“ – Bahá’u’lláh, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh

eternal

“Bahá’í marriage is union and cordial affection between the two parties. They must, however, exercise the utmost care and become acquainted with each other’s character. This eternal bond should be made secure by a firm covenant, and the intention should be to foster harmony, fellowship and unity and to attain everlasting life.” —‘Abdu’l‑Bahá Bahá’í Prayers

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