On September 30th, 1911, 'Abdu'l-Bahá, the Son of Bahá'u'lláh, Prophet/Founder of the Bahá'í Faith, gave a talk outlining His Father's Teachings at the Theosophical Headquarters in London. This is a short summary of what He said.
He began by pointing out that the inherent nature of things on this earth is to change, giving examples of the seasons and showing that there is a sequence in all things, including religion. "...when hatred and animosity, fighting, slaughtering, and great coldness of heart were governing this world, and darkness had overcome the nations, Bahá'u'lláh, like a bright star, rose from the horizon of Persia and shone with the great Light of Guidance, giving heavenly radiance and establishing the new Teaching."
He explained that Bahá'u'lláh:
* stressed the search for Truth, because people are too easily led by tradition, which results in antagonism and disputes.
* taught that all people are under the mercy of one God. "They are the branches, leaves, flowers and fruits of One Tree. They are pearls from one shell." Racial, patriotic, religious and class prejudice, have been the cause of the destruction of humanity. Further, men and women both should be regarded and educated as equals.
* taught that Religion is the chief foundation of love and unity and the cause of oneness. "If a religion become the cause of hatred and disharmony, it would be better that it should not exist. To be without such a religion is better than to be with it."
* made it clear that religion and science are inter-twined and cannot be separated. "These are the two wings with which humanity must fly. One wing is not enough. Every religion which does not concern itself with Science is mere tradition, and that is not the essential. Therefore science, education and civilization are most important necessities for the full religious life."
* explained the reality of the divine Religions is one, that the Prophets are like the sun: in different seasons they ascend from different points on the horizon. "Therefore every ancient prophet gave the glad tidings of the future, and every future has accepted the past."
* required that equality and brotherhood be established in the name of justice among all mankind. Bahá'í law provides that the general rights of mankind must be guarded and preserved because equality is "...inherent in the very nature of humanity."
* defined and provided guidelines for a society in which poverty and need would disappear.
* promised the coming of the Most Great Peace, where all the nations and peoples will elect a Great Board of Arbitration to settle differences and quarrels so that disputes do not end in war.
* taught that "hearts must receive the Bounty of the Holy Spirit, so that a Spiritual civilization may be established... Material civilization is like the body and spiritual civilization is like the soul. Body without soul cannot live."
"It is the ardent desire of the Bahá'ís to put these teachings into common practice: and they will strive with soul and heart to give up their lives for this purpose, until the heavenly light brightens the whole world of humanity." - 'Abdu'l-Bahá in London, p. 30