Baha'u'llah's Visitation Tablet for Imam Husayn

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By Dr. Khazeh Fananapazir

Editor’s Note: Iran Press Watch is pleased to bring to the attention of its readers the following magnificent Visitation Tablet by Baha’u’llah for the Prince of Martyrs, Imam Husayn, the anniversary of whose martyrdom is presently being observed by all Shi’ih Muslims on the tenth of this month of Muharram. Our readers are warmly invited to enjoy this translation which is a work in progress (also known as a “provisional translation” in Baha’i scholarly studies), and to share their reflections in the comments section. In a number of his writings, Baha’u’llah, the Prophet-Founder of the Baha’i Faith, identifies himself as the spiritual return of Imam Husayn and likens his own sufferings at the hands of the ungodly with the sufferings which His Holiness Imam Husayn suffered. Baha’u’llah’s own given name, Husayn-’Ali, was understood by him as a token of this relationship.

Introduction

Throughout their prophetic careers, both the Bab and Baha’u’llah have written a number of Tablets of Visitation for the Imams and their followers, including such Tablets for Imam ‘Ali, for all of the Imams collectively and for a number of other individuals who exemplified the same sacrificial qualities.


Foremost among them is the Tablet of Visitation for the third of the Shi’ih Imams, the youngest son of Ali and Fatimah, the daughter of Prophet Muhammad, which is offered below in translation.

It is believed that this Visitation Tablet was composed by Baha’u’llah in ‘Akka, Palestine, between June 27 and early August 1891. There is a striking significance to this inasmuch as in Islam, Imam Husayn is regarded as one who stood against all forms of oppression and persecution, just as Baha’u’llah had done throughout his life. In this sense, this Tablet forms a colophon on Baha’u’llah’s own ministry, and could also help make explicit the parallel between the sufferings of the Imam and those experienced by Baha’u’llah himself and his martyred followers.

Translation of Baha’u’llah’s Tablet for Imam Husayn

This is a Tablet of Visitation revealed from the Supreme Horizon by My All-Glorious Pen in honor of His Holiness, the Prince of Martyrs, Husayn, the son of ‘Ali, may the spirit of all else but Him be a sacrifice unto Him!

He is the Comforter, the Consoler, the Lord of Utterance, the All-Knowing!

God testifieth that there is no God but Him! He that hath appeared is the One promised in all the Books and sacred Scrolls, the One remembered in the hearts of all those near unto God and the sincere ones. Through Him, the Tree of utterance hath raised its call in the kingdom of divine recognition, saying:

O Concourse of all Faiths! I swear by the All Merciful! The days of sorrow have come upon Us, inasmuch as in these days there hath befallen the Dawning-place of God’s proof and the Dayspring of His evidence that which hath caused the lamentations of those resident beneath the canopy of glory in the all highest paradise to be raised. It hath caused wailing in the tabernacle of grace in the supreme heaven.

God testifieth that there is no God but He, and He that hath appeared is the Preserved Treasure, the hidden mystery through whom all the secrets of what hath been and what will be are divulged. This is the Day whereon the verse revealed in the past hath found its consummation and fulfillment in the verse, “The Day when mankind shall stand before the Lord of the Throne above the exalted Seat.” This is the day whereon the banners of idle fancy and vain imaginings have been subverted and the command, “We are from God and unto Him shall we return” hath gone forth. This is the Day whereon the “Great Announcement” which all the Prophets and Messengers had heralded hath appeared. In this Day, those near unto God have hastened to the sealed choice wine and have drunk of it in the name of God, the Omnipotent, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsistent. On this Day too, the cry of weeping and tears is raised from every side and the tongue of utterance speaketh: Sorrow belongeth to the Friends of God and His chosen ones; tribulation befitteth the lovers of God and His trusted ones; sadness and affliction becometh the Manifestations of God, the Possessor of all things, whether of the past or the future.

O denizens of the city of names and O countenances residing in the chambers of the all-highest paradise! O companions of faithfulness in the kingdom of eternity! Change ye your glad white and red garments unto black clothes of mourning, for the supreme calamity and the greatest loss hath come to pass, because of which the Messenger of God hath wailed and lamented and the heart of Fatimih hath melted. Thereupon, the dwellers of the Abha Tabernacle and those sailing upon the Crimson Ark, seated upon seats of love and loyalty, wept with a great weeping.

Ah! Ah! How I lament My sorrows caused by an injustice that hath set afire the realities of all beings; how I grieve over that which hath befallen the Sovereign of the Visible and the Invisible at the hands of those who have violated God’s Covenant and Testament and have denied His proof, repudiated His grace and disputed with His signs!

Ah! Ah! May the spirits of the Concourse on High be a sacrifice unto the calamity Thou didst bear, O Thou who art the Son of the Sadratu‘l-Muntaha1 and the Mystery enshrined in the Most Exalted Word! O would that the command of Creation and Its Return had not been made manifest, for thus eyes would not have witnessed Thy Body prostrate and wounded upon the dust! Because of Thy calamity, the ocean of utterance is prevented from billowing forth its waves of wisdom and knowledge and the breezes of God have been stilled. Because of Thy sorrow, all traces of joy have vanished, the fruits of the tree have fallen down, the wailing of the righteous hath risen to high heaven, and the tears of the pious have flowed in profusion.

Ah! Ah! O Prince of Martyrs and their Sovereign, their Glory and their Well beloved! I testify that through Thee the daystar of detachment hath shone forth over the firmament of creation, and through Thee the temples of the near ones were adorned with the ornament of righteousness. Through Thee the light of divine recognition hath shone forth in the world of creation. Were it not for Thee, the command to knit and join together the letter “B” and the letter “E” would not have gone forth2 and the sealed “choice wine” would not have been unsealed. But for Thee the Dove of divine testimony would not have warbled its melodies upon the branches of the tree of utterance, and but for Thee the Tongue of Grandeur would not have spoken amongst the peoples of all Faiths. Because of Thy sorrow there hath appeared separation between the two letters “Ha” and “Waw”,3 and the wailing of the believers in Divine Unity was raised in all lands. Because of Thy misfortune the Supreme Pen was prevented from raising Its shrill voice, the ocean of bounty stilled its waves, the breezes of grace have ceased wafting, the rivers of paradise have ceased flowing and the daystar of justice was impeded from casting its rays.

I testify that Thou art the Sign of the All Merciful in the world of being; Thou art the Manifestation of proof and testimony amongst all religions. Through Thee God hath fulfilled His promise and hath revealed His sovereignty. Through Thee the mystery of divine knowledge hath been divulged and the luminary of certitude hath shone forth above the horizon of evidence. Through Thee the dominion of God and His cause, His mysteries and His wisdom have all been made evident. But for Thee the well-preserved Treasure could not have been disclosed and the irrevocable decree would not have effected. But for Thee the divine summons would not have been raised from the Sublime Horizon, and the pearls of wisdom and utterance would not have been revealed from the treasury of the Abha Pen. Because of Thy affliction the joy of paradise hath been altered and the cry of the denizens of the Kingdom of Names hath been raised. Thou art He who, by Thy turning unto God, hath caused the faces of all men to be directed towards God, the Lord of All Being, and the Sacred Tree hath spoken, “The Kingdom belongeth to God, the Lord of both the visible and invisible.”

All things were as one in both their external and internal reality, but when they heard of Thy tribulation they became fragmented, separated, and then appeared in different appearances, colors, and hues.

May all existent beings be a sacrifice unto Thy Being, O Thou the Dawning-Place of the Revelation of God and the Day-spring of His Most Great Sign! May all souls be a sacrifice to Thy afflictions and calamity, O Thou who hath manifested the Unseen in the kingdom of creation! I bear witness that through Thee the dispensation of sacrifice was established in all the worlds of God, and in Thy separation the hearts of the true lovers melted. I bear witness that light in its quintessence poured lamentation over Thy afflictions, and the Sacred Mount was sore vexed at that which befell Thee at the hands of Thy enemies. But for Thee the All-Merciful would not have revealed Himself in the Sinai of knowledge unto Moses, the son of Imran.

I call on Thee and make mention of Thee, O Thou who art the manifestation of detachment in the world of creation. O Thou the secret of revelation in God’s dominions! Through Thee the portals of God’s generosity were opened, and because of Thee the light of eternity shone upon all men. I testify that when Thy hands were raised in prayer and hope the hands of all humanity were raised thereby unto God, the Revealer of verses. I testify, moreover, that when Thou didst fix Thy gaze on the Abha horizon, in consequence all beings turned unto God, the Expounder of testimonies. Thou art the Point4 through Whom all knowledge of the past and future was divulged and expanded. Thou art the Mine from which all the jewels of science and art were discovered. By reason of Thy calamity the Pen of destiny stopped in its traces and the tears of the sanctified ones gushed forth.

Ah! Ah! Because of Thy sorrow, the pillars of this world were shaken and the order of existence itself would have well nigh returned to nothingness! Thou art He through Whose behest every ocean was made to billow forth, every good fragrance was wafted abroad, every wise decree was enacted, the commandments of the Book were established amongst diverse peoples, and the life-giving water of divine mercy was made to issue forth on the Day of Return.

I have turned to Thee, O essence of both the Torah and the Evangel, O Thou source of the Writ of God, the Almighty, the Most Beauteous. Through Thee the city of self-renunciation was built up, and the banner of righteousness was raised upon the world’s highest spots. Were it not for Thee the fragrance of divine recognition and knowledge would have vanished from this earth, and the breath of the All Merciful would have ceased altogether. Through Thy power the might, the sovereignty and the omnipotence of God was established, and because of Thee the ocean of divine bounty was made to billow forth, and the King of Revelation established Himself on the throne of being. I bear witness that through Thee the veils of glory were uplifted and the limbs of the people of error quaked, the traces of vain imaginings disappeared, and the fruits of the tree of idle fancy were cast down. Through Thy most pure blood shed in His path the city of true lovers was adorned, and in Thy sorrow darkness enveloped light in all environs. For love of Thee the true lovers hastened to the arena of sacrifice and eager companions hastened to attain the source of the light of divine reunion.

O Thou quintessence of being, O Thou possessor of the seen and unseen! I know not which one of thy trials I should narrate amongst mankind. Thou art the descending place of all the knowledge of God, the dayspring of His most mighty signs, the daystar of the remembrance of God, and the source of His commands.

O Thou Supreme Pen! Say: The first light that hath dawned and shone and the first fragrance that has been wafted from eternity rest upon Thee, O Thou Who art the rustling of the Sadrah of divine utterance, O Thou the Tree of certitude planted in the paradise of knowledge. Through Thee, the daystar of God’s manifestation shone forth, the Speaker of Sinai5 hath spoken, and the divine behest of forgiveness and generosity hath been enforced amongst men. I bear witness, moreover, that Thou wert the way of God and His balance, the dayspring of His verses, the reflection of His sovereignty, and the repository of His binding commandments and all pervasive injunctions.

Verily, Thou art the City of love and the lovers are but its hosts and citizens; Thou art the Ark of God and the sincere ones are its companions and wayfarers. By virtue of Thy utterance the sea of divine knowledge billowed forth, O Thou who art the quintessence of knowledge. Through Thee the daystar of certitude shone above the horizon of testimony.

It was due to Thy clarion call, raised in the arena of martyrdom and struggle, that the cry of the embodiments of beauty were raised in the Paradise created by God, the Rich, the Most Exalted. Because of Thy appearance the banner of righteousness and piety was raised and the traces of rebellion and wickedness were obliterated. I testify, moreover, that Thou art the Treasury of the pearls of the knowledge of God and the Repository of the gems of His utterance and wisdom.

Because of Thy calamity, the Point left its most sublime position, and sought for itself a station beneath the Letter Ba. Thou art truly that Most Great Tablet upon which is inscribed all the secrets of the past and of the future and all knowledge from all eternity to all eternity6. Thou art the Supreme Pen through Whose movement earth and heaven were made to move ,and through Thee all things have turned to the lights emanating from the Face of God, the Lord of the throne above and of earth below.

Ah! Ah! By virtue of Thy tragedy lamentations, mourning, and weeping were raised in the All-Highest Paradise, and the Maids of heaven, the sacred houris sought their abiding place on dust itself! Great is the blessedness of that servant who weepeth in Thy afflictions, and blessed is the handmaiden of God who cries with tears for Thy tribulations. Also, blessed are those eyes from which tears are shed in Thy Cause. Hallowed is the earth bearing the inestimable honor of Thy remains! Moreover, most blessed is the spot wherein Thy most pure body was laid to rest.

All praise and sanctity is Thine, O my God, the Lord of Revelation, O Thou Who hast cast Thy effulgent rays on Mount Sinai! I adjure Thee by this Light Which hath shone forth above the firmament of detachment and renunciation, and by Which the principle of sole reliance upon God and acquiescence unto His Will was established. Again, I adjure Thee by those bodies slain in Thy path! I beseech Thee by those hearts which have melted in Thy love, and by all the sacred blood shed upon the earth of resignation, to forgive all those who have turned their faces unto this Supreme Station, this summit of exaltation, and that further, O my God, Thou mayest ordain for them that which will ensure that the fragrance of their acceptance and sincerity will never cease being wafted upon the divine cities of remembrance and praise.

Thou seest, O my Lord, that they are attracted by the breezes of Thy revelation and that they are severed from all else but Thee in Thy days. I beseech Thee to cause them to drink from the hand of generosity the river of everlasting life. I beg of Thee to write down for them by Thy pen of grace and loving-kindness the reward of such as have attained unto Thy presence. I beseech Thee, moreover, O Lord of all names, by Thy cause through which Thou hast subdued the kingdoms of earth and heaven, and by Thy sweet call which hath enthralled the denizens of Thy dominion, that Thou mayest aid all to attain that which Thou desirest and wishest, and that our stations may thereby be exalted in the precincts of Thy glory and the canopy of nearness unto Thee. O Lord, we are Thy servants who have fixed our gaze unto the effulgences of the lights of the Orb of Thy revelation, which hath shone above the firmament of Thy generosity. We beseech Thee by the waves of the sea of Thy holy utterance amongst Thy people that Thou mayest assist us to perform those deeds which have been commanded by Thee in Thy perspicuous book. Thou art He who of those who show mercy art the most Merciful, and Thou art the Desire of all who are in heaven and on earth. I implore Thee further, O our Lord God, by Thy power that hath encompassed all created things, and by Thy omnipotence that has embraced all beings, that Thou mayest illumine the throne of tyranny with the light of the daystar of Thy justice and that Thou mayest replace the seat of oppression and injustice with the throne of equity and fairness by Thy might and by Thy sovereignty.

Verily, Thou art powerful to do what Thou wishest. There is no other God but Thee, the Almighty, the Omnipotent!

[This Tablet is filled with allusions and allegorical expressions, the discussion of which is beyond our scope. A very few notes are included here to give some idea of a few of the weightier allusions. The interested reader is referred to the following site which offers an annotated translation of this Tablet with many more of the allusions explained: http://bahai-library.com/provisionals/ziyarat.imam.husayn.kf.html.]

Footnotes:

1 The “Lote-tree of the horizon”, which signifies the Manifestation of God Who is the Intermediary between the earthly and divine realms.
2 In several places in the Qur’an (e.g. 2:117) it is written that when He desires to create, God says “be”, and it is.
3 The Arabic word for “He” (huwa) in Islam is often used to designate God in His role as the Unknowable One.
4 The Point (nuqta) is one of the titles of the Bab, and refers to the way in which the Arabic letter “ba” is written, with a point below it. Ba is the first letter of the Qur’an, as well as the first letter of the name of Baha’u’llah.
5 The Speaker of Sinai is He Who spoke to Moses through the burning bush.
6 This refers to the Preserved Tablet, which in Islamic thought is supposed to be the repository of all knowledge and record of all events.

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19 Responses

  1. dawn

    January 12, 2009 1:05 pm

    quote:”Baha’u’llah, the Prophet-Founder of the Baha’i Faith, identifies himself as the spiritual return of Imam Husayn and likens his own sufferings at the hands of the ungodly with the sufferings which His Holiness Imam Husayn suffered.”

    1-Bahaullah’s suffering were no where near Imam Husayn’s. This is a known fact. A little comparison will show this:
    Bahaullahs sufferings: Jailed in iran, exiled to Akka and jailed their too. He was even allowed to choose the place to be exiled: “allowing Him the right to choose the land of His exile. God passes by, page 67(pdf)”
    Imam husayns sufferings: other than the sufferings he had in all his life, his whole family was surrendered by an army, deprived of water for days in a hot desert, all his men and children were killed ruthlessly, then his head was cut from the back back of the neck in front of the remaining of his family (which were nearly all women and children)…
    Which is more severe? I dont remember any of bahaullahs children being martyred in his hands, bahaullah being killed in front of his family…

    2-And the claim that he is the “spiritual return” of imam husayn. He should at least have something in common with imam Husayn. At least something Imam husayn is famous for: like being murdered by the tyrant of his time. When we look at bahaullah we see the opposite, bahaullah is protected by the tyrant of his time being the king of the imperialist government of russia who had the blood of many innocent people drippping from his hand. This is what bahaullah has to say about the tyrant Nicolaevitch Alexander II:
    ““when this Wronged One was sore-afflicted in prison, the minister of the HIGHLY ESTEEMED government (of Russia)—MAY GOD, glorified and exalted be He, ASSIST HIM!—exerted his utmost endeavor to compass My deliverance. Several times permission for My release was granted. Some of the ‘ulamás of the city, however, would prevent it. Finally, My freedom was gained through the solicitude and the endeavor of His Excellency the Minister. …His Imperial Majesty, the Most Great Emperor—may God, exalted and glorified be He, assist him!—extended to Me for the sake of God his protection—a protection which has excited the envy and enmity of the foolish ones of the earth.” God passes by, pages 67-68 (pdf).

    And if you have any doubt Nicolaevitch Alexander II was a tyrant read what shoghi has to say about him:
    “A harsh policy of repression, initiated by himself and followed by his successor, Alexander III, paved the way for a revolution which, in the reign of Nicholas II, swept away on a bloody tide the empire of the Czars, brought in its wake war, disease and famine, and established a militant proletariat which massacred the nobility, persecuted the clergy, drove away the intellectuals, disendowed the state religion, executed the Czar with his consort and his family, and extinguished the dynasty of the Romanoffs.” God passes by page, 143.

    3-Regarding the visitation tablet all i can say that it has nothing divine in it. Many persian and arabic poets (poets not prophets) have written much better scripts for imam husayn.

    Reply
    • Mark Townsend

      October 1, 2017 11:05 pm

      How do you know what is more or less than the Imam’s suffering? His drama lasted a day, but the Babis suffering went on and on, as is mentioned in the Kitab-i-Iqan. A physical suffering comes to an end, but i imagine the suffering of Yazid, Mu’awiyah, Hurr and Shimr are suffering still for what they did, while the Imam and Lord Baha’u’llah reign in a realm of Light incomparable to what we can imagine.

      Reply
  2. Shastri

    January 12, 2009 5:13 pm

    Dear Dawn,

    Thank you for your post and sharing your current understanding. A few quick points:

    1. Without minimizing physical suffering, which Baha’u’llah also suffered, there is also the mental dimension. To be the bearer of the Message of that Promised Day foreseen by all the Prophets of the past, and to then be amongst a human race completely blinded and unable to even independantly investigate that Message, is a form of tremendous suffering. Imagine being reunited with and wanting to present gifts to your son or daughter who you have not seen for many years, only to find out he or she is not even able to recognize your face and does not even know that you exist as a parent (and not only that but then consigns you to 4 decades as a prisoner).

    2. Surely you know with this point regarding the Russian Tzar that you are presenting only a small part of the picture, and leaving out the majority of the facts to suit preconceived notions and biases. Any contact with anyone Russian ended in 1853, after which 4 decades of history are missing from your post. Suffice it to say that small prison cell in Ottoman Akka was hardly the Hilton Hotel of the Russian empire.

    3. Point three is a similar objection that the idoloters at the time of the Prophet Muhammad had regarding the verses of the Quran. Also I dont see 5 million people in over 200 countries ranging from Eskimos to Aboriginies devotedly reading every day the verses of any other Persian or Arab poet these days. So if nothing else, Persians can be proud that one of their race has had such an influence on virtually every segmant of the whole human race.

    I hope these comments are received with the respectful and loving feelings with which they are offered.

    Best regards,

    Shastri

    Reply
  3. Nasser

    January 12, 2009 9:20 pm

    Hearts free of prejudice and superstition, in particular, recognize the veracity of Baha’u’llah’s writing in his Tablet for Imam Husayn. It is through his writings like these that Baha’u’llah has attracted the hearts of millions of people from every known religious and ethnic background in the world.

    To begin to understand Baha’u’llah’s writings, there are books such as Ruhi 1 through 7 that can help you gain the minimum preliminary understanding to familiarize yourself with Baha’u’llah’s life, words and message. I say this with a sincere heart to you and wish you the best in your search for the divine that has brought you here and now to this Tablet!

    -Nasser

    Reply
  4. Crispin

    January 13, 2009 2:23 pm

    Thanks to Hossein and Shastri for their measured and sensible responses. As well noted, the things raised against the Manifestations are invariably rooted in literalism and partialism, not to say personal gain.

    Think of the time that the Jewish priests were taunting His Holiness Muhammad (peace be upon Him) challenging Him to work a miracle, to make their fathers rise up out of the ground.

    He refused. He said His miracle was the Holy Qu’ran. When the priests failed to provoke Him into performing a miracle, they said it was a good job, too, because if He had done so, they would have killed Him as a witch.

    This incident shows that they already did not believe in Him and were only using their knowledge, position and eloquence to try to diminish and hopefully murder Him.

    Dawn’s refernce to what the Imam would be or not be like is amazing! This is Human telling God what He may or may not do! Remember what Baha’u’llah said about the Jewish priests who said that God could not send the Messiah (Jesus) because certain things were written in the Holy Texts and He could not deviate from that; that the ‘hands of God were chained up”! Can you imagine?! A nothing of a Man declaring that God was limited, constrained, bound and only able to do what Man vainly imagined? Incredible!

    God is able to make the Iman appear in the Solomon Islands if He wishes and there is nothing Man can say about it. It is not for God’s actions and choices to be judged by Man, but exactly the opposite. A little humility please!

    If one is like the Jewish priests, with the mind already made up beforehand, a lifetime of reading will not open a single door of understanding. In fact such effort is a waste of time. It would be better to plant trees.

    I am impressed that ‘dawn’ is reading God Passes By. It is a remarkable book filled with historical and spiritual truths. Personally I love the style of English because that is my home language. I find it continuously educational.

    A small correction regarding the Russian government’s involvement in trying to release Baha’u’llah from imprisonment: The reason the Russian Ambassador was entreating and intervening on behalf of the Babi community was because of the appalling massacres sanctioned by the priests and indeed the Head of government they had convinced to support their campaign. We call their action ‘ethnic cleansing’ and ‘crimes against humanity’ these days. Tried today, the perpetrators will end up in the Hague facing life behind bars.

    Look at this: the conduct of the Persian government and clergy was so appalling and contrary to the most fundamental concepts of human rights and dignity, that even a government with the negative characteristics decribed by Shoghi Effendi arose to try to stop it!

    The nature of the Russian government is nothing more than testimony to the ghastly treatment meted out by the Persian one. How appalling must the massacres, tortures and general treatment of the community of Baha’u’llah have been for even the Russians to have found it offensive? This says something about the culpability of the Persian government of the day, not the Babis, the Baha’is or Baha’u’llah.

    Greetings
    Crispin

    Reply
  5. dawn

    January 14, 2009 12:54 pm

    Dear Shastri,
    I’ll answer the points as numbered:
    1- you have stated that:”To be the bearer of the Message of that Promised Day foreseen by all the Prophets of the past.” This statement will only satisfy a person who believes that bahaullah is ‘the bearer of the Message’. I dont have that belief about bahaullah so you cant argue with me using this statement.

    2-According to “god passes by”, these are know facts regarding the russian Tzar alexander II:
    a-He initiated a harsh policy of repression which in his succesors brought in its wake war, disease and famine, and established a militant proletariat which massacred the nobility, persecuted the clergy, drove away the intellectuals, disendowed the state religion.
    b-Bahaullah prays this for him:”may God, exalted and glorified be He, assist him!—extended to Me for the sake of God his protection—a protection which has excited the envy and enmity of the foolish ones of the earth”.

    Simply put bahaullah asks god to ‘assist’ and ‘protect’ the ‘initiator of a harsh policy of repression’ which later led to ‘war, disease and famine, and established a militant proletariat which massacred the nobility, persecuted the clergy…’. You want me to believe that gods prophet (or manifestation) who believes is also a spiritual return of imam husayn has the desire that this tyrant (Alexander II) be ‘assisted’ and ‘protected’ by god himself!!? No way.
    Compare to above with the claim of the text:[quote]”Imam Husayn is regarded as one who stood against all forms of oppression and persecution, just as Baha’u’llah had done throughout his life. In this sense, this Tablet forms a colophon on Baha’u’llah’s own ministry, and could also help make explicit the parallel between the sufferings of the Imam and those experienced by Baha’u’llah himself and his martyred followers.”
    As stated bahaullah prays for the “assistance” and “protection” of oppressors which clearly contradicts the above claim.

    3-Do you know why people read bahaullahs scripts? because they think he is a prophet and his sayings are divine. Thats all. Would they do the same if they thought he was a poet? No. You clearly mis-understood me. What i meant was that if you read this tablet without prejudice there is nothing in it to show it is divine. If you think it is divine? Prove it. (An answer like this is not acceptable for a non-bahai like me: It is divine because it was composed by bahallah).

    Reply
  6. dawn

    January 14, 2009 1:39 pm

    Dear crispin,

    Two points:

    1-Regarding the miracles of the prophet mohammad you have been greatly mis-informed. He had many miracles which can be found in most islamic books written about the prophet mohammad. The only reason bahais say he didn’t have any miracles (except the quran) is the fact that bahaullah himself didn’t have any miracles to prove he was divine.

    2-[quote]”The reason the Russian Ambassador was entreating and intervening on behalf of the Babi community was because of the appalling massacres sanctioned by the priests and indeed the Head of government they had convinced to support their campaign. We call their action ‘ethnic cleansing’ and ‘crimes against humanity’ these days.”
    Again you have been mis-informed. Their is a book called “kashf ul ghita” written by the prominent bahai author:”abolfazl golpayegani”. This book was printed by the institute for bahai publications in iran many years before the revolution in iran. The publication was then abruptly stopped. Why? Because it had things in it that bahais must not know. Things like (page 166): “The foundation of the Bayan (Bab’s holy book) religion were based on DESTROYING ALL BOOKS WHOSE TOPICS WERE ANYTHING OTHER THAN THE BAYAN RELIGION [1] and DESTROYING THE SHRINES, PLACES OF WORSHIP and CEMETARIES [2] OF ALL PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT FOLLOWERS OF BAB AND KILLING THEM [3] AND TAKING THEIR WOMEN [4] AND CONCISELEY SAID DESTROYING THOSE PEOPLE AND THEIR SIGNS [5]…”.
    As you said: “We call their action ‘ethnic cleansing’ and ‘crimes against humanity’ these days.”
    Of course you can go and read the “Bayan” book. The things mentioned above can be found in the bayan book at the following locations:
    [1]Section 6 of 6th part,
    [2] section 12 of 4th part
    [3] section 10 of 4th part
    [4] Section 5 of 1st part.
    [5] Section 12 of fourth part.

    The persian kings were trying to get rid of these crazy fanatics which had caused much riots and killed many people.Now remember, the russians were attacking persia and trying to take over it. It would benefit them much by supporting the babis who were weakening the central persian government. And thats exactly what they did. Bahaullah (himself still a follower of bab at that time) and a group of bab’s followers were arrested on the suspicion of trying to assassinate Persia’s king. All were executed except for their leader Baha’ullah, thanks to the russian government’s intervention. Its no co-incidence!

    Reply
  7. Crispin

    January 14, 2009 2:45 pm

    Dear Dawn

    >1-Regarding the miracles of the prophet mohammad you have been >greatly mis-informed. He had many miracles which can be found in most >islamic books written about the prophet mohammad.

    Of that I have no doubt. On the occasion I mentioned, He refused to perform ‘tricks’ or miracles for them because He knew what was in their hearts.

    >The only reason bahais say he didn’t have any miracles (except the >quran) is the fact that bahaullah himself didn’t have any miracles to >prove he was divine.

    On the contrary, on two points. Baha’is do not say He performed no miracles, and second, Baha’u’llah, like the Bab, performed many miracles and asked people now to make a fuss about them, that they only have importance to people who see them. As you know many people make fake claims for miracles so unless you were there, claims are not proof.

    >2-[quote]“The reason the Russian Ambassador was entreating and >intervening on behalf of the Babi community…

    >Again you have been mis-informed.

    I disagree. You can read the letters from the Russian Ambassador to his government as I think they are now a matter of public record. Also the massacres of the Babis made the press in many European countries, so vile was the treatment of those people.

    >….Things like (page 166): “The foundation of the Bayan (Bab’s holy book) >religion were based on DESTROYING ALL BOOKS WHOSE TOPICS WERE >ANYTHING OTHER THAN THE BAYAN RELIGION

    That’s silly!
    How can you believe such a thing!

    >[1] and DESTROYING THE SHRINES, PLACES OF WORSHIP and >CEMETARIES

    That has been done to the House of the Bab and Baha’i cemeteries in Iran these days by mobs. Are the Russians invading again, perhaps?

    >The persian kings were trying to get rid of these crazy fanatics which had >caused much riots and killed many people.

    The people killed were the Babis unless directly attacked. In order that no misunderstanding about the position on this, Baha’u’llah forbade Baha’is to defend themselves when attacked merely for being His followers. These days people take advantage of that, pillaging and burning Baha’i property. Because the Baha’is are faithful, they make no defence as the Bab authorised.

    >Now remember, the russians were attacking persia and trying to take >over it.

    When?

    >…and a group of bab’s followers were arrested on the suspicion of trying to >assassinate Persia’s king.

    The group were two brothers who lost their minds after the massacre of their family. One was killed on the spot and the other tortured to death. The Shah was indeed slightly wounded.

    >All were executed except for their leader Baha’ullah, thanks to the russian >government’s intervention.

    >Its no co-incidence!

    That means it was a plot, right? A Russian plot to overthrow the country by picking a man with no weapons, no army, no civil position and …. well…. and what? Not much of a plot if you ask me. I see no advantage for either the Russians nor for Baha’u’llah. The simple fact remains that the appalling behaviour of the mobs, encouraged of course by their leaders, shocked even the most distant people and they rose to His defence by diplomacy.

    You have made mention several times of Baha’u’llah’s request to God to assist him (the Russian Emperor). It seems that perhaps God did not, or He did but his behaviour undid whatever had been gained by his righteous actions. One good act cannot perhaps excuse many other bad ones.

    Back to the “Russian plot” idea. Apparently it was not thought so at the time by the Persian government. If the Persian governemnt saw no plot, I think there was no plot.

    Baha’u’llah was not kept in prison by the command of the government, but as you correctly noted above, “Some of the ‘ulamás of the city, however, would prevent it” each time the governemnt tried to release him. Thus you see, it was a religious not apolitical persecution. Other people wanted, like today’s Iranian mobs, to sieze the property of people, using fanciful imaginings to whip up either tolerance of their crines or even participation by their neighbours.

    It is a bit of a surprise to me that 150 years later the same sorts of things are still going on in Iran. I had always conceived of Iran as an intellectually and socially developed country but these actions indicate otherwise and undermine their historical reputation for greatness.

    Reply
  8. Adib

    January 14, 2009 4:34 pm

    Dear Dawn,

    I would like to address the following point:

    >Of course you can go and read the “Bayan” book.

    Not as easily as one would think. For the record, there are two Bayans, the Arabic and Persian Bayan. Several of the excerpts still relevant to our dispensation can be found in a compilation known as “Selections from the Writings of the Bab.” Some other bits have been provisionally translated by Baha’i scholars like Ismael Velasco, but neither the Persian nor the Arabic Bayans were ever translated in full because the bulk of it is no longer relevant to the Baha’i religion.

    That point also addresses your query concerning the burning of books etc.: even if it is in there, remember that if Baha’u’llah did not reiterate it, it is not a part of our religion. Not everything that the Bab proclaimed was retained by Baha’u’llah when he declared prophethood.

    However, in the Kitab-i-Aqdas (our book of laws), Baha’u’llah himself did address the destruction of books mentioned in the Bayan:

    “God hath relieved you of the ordinance laid down in the Bayán concerning the destruction of books. We have permitted you to read such sciences as are profitable unto you, not such as end in idle disputation; better is this for you, if ye be of them that comprehend.” (Verse 77)

    Note 109 on page 214 of the Aqdas also confirms this:

    “With regard to the destruction of books, the Bayán commanded the Báb’s followers to destroy all books except those that were written in vindication of the Cause and Religion of God. Bahá’u’lláh abrogates this specific law of the Bayán.”

    And regarding the general severity of the laws written in the Bayan, the following letter was written on the behalf of Shoghi Effendi (great-grandson of Baha’u’llah, the first and last Guardian of the Baha’i Faith from 1921-1957):

    “The severe laws and injunctions revealed by the Báb can be properly appreciated and understood only when interpreted in the light of His own statements regarding the nature, purpose and character of His own Dispensation. As these statements clearly reveal, the Bábí Dispensation was essentially in the nature of a religious and indeed social revolution, and its duration had therefore to be short, but full of tragic events, of sweeping and drastic reforms. Those drastic measures enforced by the Báb and His followers were taken with the view of undermining the very foundations of Shí’ih orthodoxy, and thus paving the way for the coming of Bahá’u’lláh. To assert the independence of the new Dispensation, and to prepare also the ground for the approaching Revelation of Bahá’u’lláh, the Báb had therefore to reveal very severe laws, even though most of them were never enforced. But the mere fact that He revealed them was in itself a proof of the independent character of His Dispensation and was sufficient to create such widespread agitation, and excite such opposition on the part of the clergy that led them to cause His eventual martyrdom.”

    Reply
  9. dawn

    January 15, 2009 5:26 am

    Dear crispin,

    I’ll clarify some points:
    1- I have debated with many bahais and they all same the same thing: None of the prophets had miracles and bahaullah dosn’t either. If you think they do show me at least three miracles from bahaullah, from BAHAI published books or documents. 1400 years after the prophet mohammad and 2000 years after jesus many of their miracles can still be found in christian and islamic scriptures. Only 150 years have passed from bahaullahs time and we can not find a single recorded miracle from him, not even in bahai scriptures. I have a list of unfulfilled prophecies from bahaullah which i can inform you about.

    2->I disagree. You can read the letters from the Russian Ambassador to his government as I think they are now a matter of public record. Also the massacres of the Babis made the press in many European countries, so vile was the treatment of those people.

    If such letters exist where are they. Your claims are baseless unless you prove the above statements.

    3->>Things like (page 166): “The foundation of the Bayan (Bab’s holy book) religion were based on DESTROYING ALL BOOKS WHOSE TOPICS WERE ANYTHING OTHER THAN THE BAYAN RELIGION [1] and DESTROYING THE SHRINES, PLACES OF WORSHIP and CEMETARIES [2] OF ALL PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT FOLLOWERS OF BAB AND KILLING THEM [3] AND TAKING THEIR WOMEN [4] AND CONCISELEY SAID DESTROYING THOSE PEOPLE AND THEIR SIGNS [5]…”.Now remember, the russians were attacking persia and trying to take over it.<When?<
    Do some research, maybe history is also spoon fed to you by the UHJ:
    “With the Russian Empire continuously advancing south in the course of two wars against Persia, and the treaties of Turkmanchai and Golestan in the western frontiers, plus the unexpected death of Abbas Mirza in 1823, and the murder of Persia’s Grand Vizier (Mirza AbolQasem Qa’im Maqām), Persia lost its traditional foothold in Central Asia to the Russian Tsarist armies. [1] The Russian armies occupied the Aral coast in 1849, Tashkent in 1864, Bukhara in 1867, Samarkand in 1868, and Khiva and Amudarya in 1873. The Treaty of Akhal, in which the Qajarid’s were forced to cede Khwarazm, topped off Persian losses to the global emerging power of Imperial Russia.”
    en-wikipedia-org/wiki/Iran-Russia_relations

    5-I never said anything about a russian plot. I just put forward the facts. You can decide for yourself:
    a-Russian’s are waging a ruthless war against iran to occupy their lands and topple the government.
    b-Russians intercede for bahaullahs release who was still a follower of Bab. The followers of Bab were also rioting against the central persian government.
    c-Bahaullah prays that god “assist” and “protect” the ruthless russian king!!! Its not a matter of his prayers being fulfilled by god or not. You dont see the point. If you see a person who orders war against another country to kill their people and take their land, “WOULD YOU ASK GOD TO ASSIST AND PROTECT THIS PERSON”? NO NO NO.

    And dont give me that ridiculouse reason that the russians were interceding on behalf of the Babi community because of the massacares created by the persians. How sweet of them!!!! These blood thirsty people were massacaring the persians and occupyinf their land. And now they are shedding crocodile tears for a bunch of Babi’s. They only intercede for their leader Bahaullah and no one else. Unless bahaullah is valuable for the russians, What difference does it make for the russians if bahaullah dies or lives? They either value him as a prophet (manifestation of god) or he has political value. We can be sure bahaullah had no divine value for them because neither the russian king nor the ambassador converted to bahaism or babism and their is no historical record mentioning that any of the mentioned russians had spoken about Bab’s and Bahaullah religions and HOW GREAT their religions are.

    Reply
  10. dawn

    January 15, 2009 6:01 am

    Dear adibو
    1-regarding the Bayan I didn’t say go and read the translation. I said read the original scripts in arabic and farsi or get someone to translate them for you. I really feel sorry for bahais in this regard. While one of the twelve principles of your faith is to be: “free to find the truth” you dont have the means to study original babi and bahai scriptures. For example just take a look at the persian section of the library at bahaiorg. Their are many many books their but when you go to the english part only a handful have been translated? why? Remember what you said about the Bayan:[quote]:”Bayans were never translated in full because the bulk of it is no longer relevant to the Baha’i religion.”
    You cant say the same about the persian and arabic bahai books which were never translated.

    2- What i mentioned about the laws of the Bayan can also be found in Abdulbahas book:
    “In Bab’s period his laws were: decapitation of the head, and burning the books, destroying the shrines and massacaring all that did not believe in bab ” (Makatib (letters) of abdulbaha, volume 2 page 266)
    (Today we call this act ethnically cleansing)
    But you dont get the point. You say these were abrogated by bahaullah. We havn’t reached that part of the story yet. Suppose you lived at the time of the Bab and he says hey i’ve brought a new religion and these are my laws: ‘all the crazy laws i mentioned’. Would you believe this guy to be a prophet or a manifestation of GOD? NO NO NO. Now here is the point: bahaullah says Bab was a prophet and manifestation of god and im the guy he was talking about. Then would you believe bahaullah was a prophet or manifestation of GOD? NO NO NO. The persian government was trying to stop these fanatics who were masaccaring people and destroying everything and anyone who was against them and bahais come up and say why were the persian kings trying to “ethnically clean” the babis? Well dude it was the opposite the persian kings were trying to get rid of a bunch of religios fanatics who thought all none babi’s should be massacared and their properties destroyed.

    Reply
  11. hossein

    January 15, 2009 10:12 am

    Dear Dawn
    I am addressing your multiple comments and I shall begin with the one you had made in resposne to Shastri. In your response to Shastri you opine as underlined below;
    Dear Shastri,
    I’ll answer the points as numbered:
    1- you have stated that:”To be the bearer of the Message of that Promised Day foreseen by all the Prophets of the past.” This statement will only satisfy a person who believes that bahaullah is ‘the bearer of the Message’. I dont have that belief about bahaullah so you cant argue with me using this statement.

    Well Dawn you object to the statement made above and that is your prerogative to do so. But when you add that you “don’t have that belief about bahaullah”, which of course is within your right to do so as well, you are actually tacitly assuming that someone is trying to force you to believe in Bahaullah or the Bahai faith—and which of course is the farthest from the truth. No one had asked you to believe. Actually, no Bahai would ask you to believe for that is a matter between you and your God. Bahaullah had specifically addressed this question, saying that he who accepts has benefited himself and he who does not accept we are to leave him be, and that Baha’is are forbidden in the Holy Aqdas from arguing with or objecting to anyone. Bahaullah enjoins upon Baha’is to leave him to God. Additionally, and for your information the Bahai Faith prohibits its followers from proselytizing in any way shape or form. Then you jump from above quoted assertion, (of not believing) and say “so you can not argue with me using this statement” thereby giving yourself license to discount Sahstri’s belief. It seems that you have taken upon yourself the right to judge that someone is or is not a believer and a scripture is or is not divine.

    And again you write:

    And 2-According to “god passes by”, these are know facts regarding the russian Tzar alexander II:
    a-He initiated a harsh policy of repression which in his succesors brought in its wake war, disease and famine, and established a militant proletariat which massacred the nobility, persecuted the clergy, drove away the intellectuals, disendowed the state religion.

    Indeed these facts are known as you assert. However, you seem to mix two facts stated in the above quote you cit from God Passes By; While the Tsar did institute a harsh policy he had nothing to do with what the “militant proletariat did”; these were the Bolshiviks who not only killed the other Tsar and his family but “massacred the nobility, persecuted the clergy, drove away the intellectuals, disendowed the state religion.”

    Also you say:

    b-Bahaullah prays this for him:”may God, exalted and glorified be He, assist him!—extended to Me for the sake of God his protection—a protection which has excited the envy and enmity of the foolish ones of the earth”.

    If you knew what period and for which specific act of the Russian government did Bahaullah praise the Tsar you would not have mixed up your facts as you do below:

    Simply put bahaullah asks god to ‘assist’ and ‘protect’ the ‘initiator of a harsh policy of repression’ which later led to ‘war, disease and famine, and established a militant proletariat which massacred the nobility, persecuted the clergy…’.

    Bahaullah’s innocence of the charge regarding the attempt on the Shah’s life and all other charges was established beyond the shadow of a doubt and the Russian’s, [as well as other foreign powers] did indeed offer Him assistance for a safe passage to Baghdad. The very same thing happened when Bahaullah was exiled from Edirne to Akka which He flatley declined. While in Tehran Bahaullah was wrongly accused and at the insistence of Nasir’id-Din Shah’s mother He was thrown in the Siyah Chahl for four months and all His earthly possessions were confiscated. Did you know that an Islamic hadith says that after the Mahdi appears He and all His companions shall be massacred except one who Baha’is believe is Bahaullah. Again you are not asked to believe anything, I am just informing you of the facts as they occurred.

    You also assert that:

    You want me to believe that gods prophet (or manifestation) who believes is also a spiritual return of imam husayn has the desire that this tyrant (Alexander II) be ‘assisted’ and ‘protected’ by god himself!!? No way.

    And again I suggest you consult authentic historical records and see for yourself the time line of all these events, especially the time the Tsar instituted those repressive policies and the later developments recorded in historical records, and how do these events fall on a time-line.
    It seems that you have failed to understand that Bahaullah was supplicating God to reward that king for the assistance his government extended to Bahaullah, whose innocence was clearly established; and that assistance was that Bahaullah, after he was proven innocent and released, be conducted to Baghdad and to ensure that He arrives there alive and not simply be killed along the way there. I am sure you d not see that as justice, again that is your prerogative. What is wrong with that act of justice? Is it because your sources of information about the Baha’i Faith have been gotten from unfriendly sources; the sources that are replete with toxic misinformation, false accusation, and baseless propaganda against the Bahai’s that are being viciously circulated on every mass communication medium at the disposal of the Iranian government? Ask your self that question.
    You seem to desperately want to somehow connect, by hook or by crook, your covert assertion that Bahaullah is somehow condoning the Tsar’s later actions and policies. Which would be a far stretch of the facts by any standard. I am afraid you have again failed in extrapolating to that connection.

    Here is what you assert:

    As stated bahaullah prays for the “assistance” and “protection” of oppressors which clearly contradicts the above claim.

    Do you truly believe that by repeating the above assertion, you could validate the baseless assertion and extrapolation that Bahaulla condones the Tsar’s later tyranny simply by having supplicated God to reward him for his just action. What would you have done if you were to be jailed in a subterranean dungeon foul beyond description, while you are innocent of all that you had been accused of; and were someone to come and vindicate your innocence would you turn around and kick him in the shine?

    And lastly, you ask:

    Surely you must know that people do not read Bahaullah’s words because they think He is a manifestation of God, but because they truly believe with all their beings that He is the manifestation of God for this Day, and that He is the promised One of all ages as recorded in previous scriptures: Bahais believe that Bahaullah is the return of the Imam Husayn, and is the second coming of the Lord Jesus, is the Father, the Lord of Hosts, the Fifth Buda, the Shah Bahram, and the Speaker on Mount Sinai, in spite of what you and other deniers assert. And by the way no one is asking you to believe just so as to set the record straight.
    A messenger of God does not have to prove anything to anyone; He Himself, His deeds and His life are the irrefutable proof, and after Him is the Word He leaves behind.
    Did you not know what God had said about false prophets? I’ll tell you—God said that should anyone falsely attribute his sayings as coming from God, the Lord will take hold of him and cut his life vein. In the span of a mere 165 ( you assert 150—misinformed again) years the Bahai Faith has spread all over the world and its adherents are found in every country except the Vatican.
    In the first 6 years of the Bab’s ministry on earth no less than 20,000 of His followers were put to death in the most heinous and cruel ways, while the first 6 years of the Prophet Muhammad’s ministry [Peace Be Upon Him] a mere 40 individuals believed in Him. Read your faith’s history and the histories of other faiths that you my become informed.

    Speaking of miracles: These have never been a proof for anyone except those who saw them. And many of those who saw them attributed the same to sorcery. Again read the history of your faith and see for yourself what did the prophet Muhammad says about miracles and how He refused to perform them when asked to prove His mission. Did the Jews and idolaters, who saw many of Muhammad’s miracles believe in the Prophet? Now the miracles in Islam are according to the Quran itself are not a sufficient proof. Saying this in no way means that Muhammad did not have many miracles, He did and so did Bahaullah and the Bab. By the same token all of God’s messengers perform miracles, and Bahaullah performed many miracles that were recorded by eyewitnesses. If I did not see them that does not mean they did not occur. By the same token you did not see the miracles of the Prophet, unless you have been living since 1400 years ago to have been an eyewitness. Were you there to see them? Or are these not stories told by x from what he heard from z, who in turn heard it from xx from c, from y and so on. Did the person who recorded them in the many hadiths see them or did he merely record them?
    I urge you therefore to not make assertions you can not substantiate and extrapolations you can not support, especially when it comes to matters of faith. So judge the Baha’is by the same standards of investigation that you would have others judge your faith and yourself; that is if you want to be fair and even handed and above all objective.
    Did you not hear the hadith which says: there is no coercion in belief; for you is your religion and for me is mine. La ikraha fi al din lakum dinakum wa li didni.

    I urge you now to read only the Kitabi Aqdas to see for yourself the laws Bahaullah instituted and the laws he abrogated, not only from the Bayan but from the previous religions as well.
    And finally to address your last point: the so called detached and objective reading of the Bahai scripture, revealed by Bahaullah

    What i meant was that if you read this tablet without prejudice there is nothing in it to show it is divine.

    From your above statement, it would be safe to say that you do see divine things when you read your own holy scripture. Could you then perhaps educate us by sharing what you see in the scriptures you believe in, that had convinced you that they are divine in origin; let me be more specific—what do you see as being divine when you read the Quran…is this a belief you yourself had found or is it something you were told and believed it blindly. In other words is it something you had inherited? For your information no such thing is allowed in the Baha’i Faith. You will clearly see this when you read the very first paragraph of Bahaulla’s book, the Iqan, or Book of Certitude as well as others by Bahaullah, such as the Seven Valleys and Four Valleys, or the Gems of Divine Mysteries, where He lays the condition a seeker after truth must fulfill, as your own good self no doubt are a seeker after truth.
    How ironic it is that in another post you claim that you had debated many Baha’is and then allegedly conclude that all of them say the same thing as quoted from another of your comments below, where you say:

    I’ll clarify some points:
    1- I have debated with many bahais and they all same the same thing: None of the prophets had miracles and bahaullah dosn’t either. If you think they do show me at least three miracles from bahaullah, from BAHAI published books or documents. 1400 years after the prophet mohammad and 2000 years after jesus many of their miracles can still be found in christian and islamic scriptures. Only 150 years have passed from bahaullahs time and we can not find a single recorded miracle from him, not even in bahai scriptures. I have a list of unfulfilled prophecies from bahaullah which i can inform you about.

    For your information there are many miracles that have been recorded from Bahaullah as well as from the Bab. I do not know which Baha’is you had debated, but I assure you that every Baha’I knows of the example I am about to give you so that you will no longer make such baseless allegations. For that example you need to read the account where Bahaullah is challenged to produce a miracle by the Islamic clergy in Iraq headed by one who was sent by Naser’id- Din Shah to do some refurbishing of the holy Shai Shrines Karbila; Bahaullah agreed to perform any miracle they wished on the condition that they all agree to one miracle and to sign a document stating that should He do so to their satisfaction, they in turn would agree to concede to His claims. Guess what happened? They refused, just as the those who objected to the prophet Muhammad had done before them.

    I advise you to read what Bahaullah wrote to the Shah of Iran…you will find that on the Baha’i official site under the Summons of the Lord of Hosts…and while you are at it, do read what He also wrote to the Sultan Abdu’l Aziz, the Kaiser of Germany, and Napoleon the III. Only after having read all these as well as the Tablet titled the Son of the Wolf, addressed to one of Isfahan’s high ranking clergy, could you perhaps claim that you have read Baha’i scripture. For doing otherwise, you would be wasting your breath and would also appear to be the incarnation of all those who objected to all of God’s messengers in the past; just as it is narrated in the Surah of Hud, in the holy Quran.

    Reply
  12. Crispin

    January 15, 2009 11:37 am

    Dear Dawn

    Greetings.

    I am not personally interested in miracles. Baha’u’llah says the only are of interest to this who witness them. I have not witnessed any.

    Healing miracles of the Bab, as a single example the child whose face He healed by covering it with a cloth and removing it afterwards, are recorded in Baha’i literature so I do not see how you can say there are none when here are.

    Re the letters about the possible release of Baha’u’llah: what would you do if I showed them to you? I can see you are not really interested. It seems want to tell everyone there was some sort of political link between the Russians and Baha’u’llah where none existed. We both have better things to do with out time.

    Are you saying BECAUSE the Russians tried to stop the Persian government killing Him He was not a Manifestation, the behaviour of the Russians before or after being sufficient proof that He was not? That would be no proof at all! You can’t prove someone is not a Manifestation of God, the Unconstrained.

    Back to your question about miracles by Baha’u’llah (rather then the Bab where I gave one well known example) I am wondering why you are asking for examples. What would you do with the information? Your motive does not seem to be to discover whether or not Baha’u’llah was a Manifestation of God as He claimed to be. If He is not, where then is the Promised One?

    When offered a custom made-to-order miracle, the assembled Christian leaders of Adrianople who asked Baha’u’llah the same question you did, were convinced that He would do it. He said that if He performed their requested miracle (which theyhad to first agree on) they had to follow Him. They chickened out. Basically they said they cannot follow Him because he had not performed a miracle for them (instead of for others, which they did not see). Offered a miracle of their choice, they declined. They, like the priests challenging Muhammad, said ‘Perform for us a miracle and we will follow you’. The details of the Adrianople story are available in several Baha’i books.

    Thank you for your offer of a list of ‘unfulfilled prophecies’ from Baha’u’llah. I am not sure it would help.

    I know that prophecies are usually taken to indicate Divine powers, therefore it would be more interesting to see a list of prophecies which HAVE been fulfilled, because an unfulfilled prophecy is a prophecy in waiting. Prophecies are often allegorical and can only be understood after the fact so it can be tricky determining what was meant by a spiritual prophecy.

    As for the fulfilled ones, Baha’u’llah made many which have already come true, the more easily checked ones being the fall or the endurance of leaders, both secular and religious, depending on how they responded to His call, many issued individually to those leaders. Whole books are devoted to this topic including “The Prison and the Kings’ which provides copious details on some propecies and fulfilments.

    Prophecies which give dates are often misinterpreted, one well known example being about the Baha’i Faith being highly visible within a certain number of years. Measured from which year, though? The correct year was 1963 (Celebration of the extraordinary, historically unparallelled accomplishments of the 10 Year Crusade). Some people thought it was 1957 because they didn’t know when to start counting from because they didn’t read the whole thing.

    That is the same problem with the prophecies regarding the return of Christ (1844). Some say 1843 and others 1914. Depends on when you start counting.

    Regards

    Reply
  13. Adib

    January 15, 2009 12:02 pm

    Dear Dawn,

    >None of the prophets had miracles and bahaullah dosn’t either.

    We do not rely on miracles as proofs of the validity of a Messenger of God because they are only good for people who were there to witness it. In my opinion, being able to literally bring people back to life, making the stars rain on the heavens, and being able to sit on top of water vapor is far less important than bearing a message which has the potential to transform humanity forever.

    >I have a list of unfulfilled prophecies from bahaullah which i can inform you about.

    And I have a list of fulfilled ones:

    1. The fall from power of the French Emperor Napoleon III and the consquent loss of his empire.
    2. The defeat of Germany in two bloody wars, resulting in the ‘lamentations of Berlin.’
    3. The success and stability of Queen Victoria’s reign.
    4. The dismissal of ‘Ali Pasha as prime minister of Turkey.
    5. The overthrow of Sultan ‘Abdu’l-Aziz of Turkey.
    6. The breakup of the Ottoman Empire, leading to the extinction of the ‘outward spendour’ of its capital, Constantinople.
    7. The downfall of Nasiri’d-Din Shah, the Persian monarch.
    8. The advent of constitutional government in Persia.
    9. A massive (albeit temporary) decline in the fortunes of monarchy throughout the world.
    10. A worldwide erosion of ecclesiastical authority.
    11. The collapse of the Muslim Caliphate.
    12. The spread of communism, the “Movement of the Left,’ and its rise to world power.
    13. The catastrophic decline of that same movement, triggered by the collapse of its egalitarian economy.
    14. The rise of Israel as a Jewish homeland.
    15. The persecution of Jews on the European continent (the Nazi holocause).
    16. America’s violent racial struggles.
    17. Baha’u’llah’s release from the prison of ‘Akka and the pitching of His tent on Mount Carmel.
    18. The seizure and desecration of Baha’u’llah’s House in Baghdad.
    19. The failure of all attempts to create schism within the Baha’i Faith.
    20. The explosive acceleration of scientific and technological progress.
    21. The development of nuclear weapons.
    22. The achievement of transmutation of elements, the age-old alchemist’s dream.
    23. Dire peril for all humanity as a result of that achievement.
    24. The discovery that complex elements evolve in nature from simpler ones.
    25. The recognition of planets as a necessary by-product of star formation.
    26. Space travel.
    27. The realization that some forms of cancer are contagious or communicable.
    28. The fruitless search for a ‘missing link’ between man and ape.
    29. The non-existence of a mechanical ether (the supposed light-carrying substance posited by classical physics), and its redefinition as an abstract reality.
    30. The breakdown of mechanical models (literal images) as a basis for understanding the physical world.

    If you want more on Baha’i prophecies, read “The Challenge of Baha’u’llah” (where the above list came from) and “He Cometh With Clouds” by Gary Matthews. Just because a prophecy has not yet been fulfilled does not mean it never will be; keep in mind that our religion is only 160 years old. Give it time.

    >They either value him as a prophet (manifestation of god) or he has political value.

    That’s rather black-and-white of you to assert, because in reality he didn’t fit either bill: Baha’u’llah and his message were and are intrinsically apolitical and neither the Shah nor Dolgorukov believed that he was a Manifestation of God. He was released because he was innocent; I will explain below.

    >b-Russians intercede for bahaullahs release who was still a follower of Bab. The followers of Bab were also rioting against the central persian government.

    Let me break down the entire assassination plot for you. There were three overzealous and distraught Babis who decided to kill the Shah in 1852. Baha’u’llah had NOTHING to do with this and actually condemned the plot later. The Babis only inflict a minor wound on the Shah, but many Babis – including Baha’u’llah, which was a mistake because he had no role – were arrested in a sweep.

    Now, the secretary to the Russian Legation in Tehran at the time was Mirza Majid Ahi, who was married to a sister of Baha’u’llah, meaning Baha’u’llah had family ties with him. Therefore Baha’u’llah asked him to go to Prince Dmitri Ivanovich Dolgorukov, the Russian Minister in Tehran from 1845-1854, and interecede on his behalf *because he had done nothing wrong*. Dolgorukov approached the Shah and asked that he either bring forth incriminating evidence against Baha’u’llah or release him. Mirza Aqa Khan Nuri, the Grand Vizier of Persia, also did the same, and the Shah eventually agreed to release him but decreed that he be banished from Persia. Dolgorukov offered him a place in Russia, but Baha’u’llah refused, choosing Iraq instead. This began the chain of events which would turn into a 40-year exile and Baha’u’llah’s eventual death at `Akka in 1892. All of this is recounted in H.M. Balyuzi’s “Baha’u’llah: The King of Glory”.

    >c-Bahaullah prays that god “assist” and “protect” the ruthless russian king!!! If you see a person who orders war against another country to kill their people and take their land, “WOULD YOU ASK GOD TO ASSIST AND PROTECT THIS PERSON”? NO NO NO.

    For the record, Baha’u’llah also prayed for Nasiri’d-Din Shah, the very man who hastily imprisoned him and sent him on his path to a 40-year long exile, in this same manner. Baha’u’llah prayed for these people in hopes that they would have a change of heart and come to recognize the Messenger of God for that era: himself.

    If you want proof that Baha’u’llah was asking God to aid them in spiritual affairs and not contingent ones, then let us eliminate the worldly possibilities with elucidation of the following verse of the Kitab-i-Aqdas:

    “Ye are but vassals, O kings of the earth!…Arise, and serve Him Who is the Desire of all nations, Who hath created you through a word from Him, and ordained you to be, for all time, the emblems of His sovereignty.” (Verse 82)

    Here, Baha’u’llah is stating that the kings of this world are but vassals (essentially servants) of the Almighty God, and he then goes on to state that kings of the world are meant to be *emblems of His sovereignty.” This means that they are meant to try their best at becoming signs of God on earth: the role kings and queens were and are meant to play. Please note that this does not mean that kings possess a higher ontological station that anybody else; they are human beings just like anybody else, but AS a king, they are meant to try and be just, kind, and merciful – all attributes of the Almighty.

    In light of this elaboration, one can see that the aforementioned Czar’s actions and misdeeds are clearly NOT in accordance with Baha’u’llah’s ideal standards for rulers of nations. How, then, could Baha’u’llah rationally pray for *transient actions* which run counter to the standards he has set? It is obvious that he is not asking God to aid him in his destructive campaigns, then, but rather to *help guide him to Baha’u’llah and the standards he has set for kings and queens*.

    >For example just take a look at the persian section of the library at bahaiorg. Their are many many books their but when you go to the english part only a handful have been translated? why?

    Because the Baha’i World Center has a ton of things to translate and can’t get to everything right away. You are aware that Baha’u’llah has over 15,000 documents in sum? Again, you are utilizing nonsequiturs: just because something has not been translated as of yet *does not mean it never will be*.

    >What i mentioned about the laws of the Bayan can also be found in Abdulbahas book:

    That’s great, kudos to `Abdu’l-Baha for bringing that to our attention; that only further affirms Shoghi Effendi’s above statement. Now allow me to raise a point of my own:

    “We have announced unto everyone that one single word from Thee excelleth all that hath been sent down in the Bayán.” (Aqdas, Verse 129)

    The Bab proclaimed this during his own dispensation in the Bayan. Again, this means that the Babi dispensation – whose only purpsoe was to make a break in Shi’ah Islam and to prepare people for the advent of Baha’u’llah – was intended to be superseded by Baha’u’llah, and many of the laws in the Bayan were meant to be abrogated as well. Whether or not one would have joined a religion in spite of those laws is playing with hypothetical situations in light of reality: 20,000 people gave up their lives for his cause before 10 years had passed since its inception.

    >Suppose you lived at the time of the Bab and he says hey i’ve brought a new religion and these are my laws: ‘all the crazy laws i mentioned’. Would you believe this guy to be a prophet or a manifestation of GOD? NO NO NO.

    Well apparently the severity of the Bab’s laws was not enough to prevent Vahid Darabi – one of the most erudite Shi’ah Muslim scholars of his time, who interviewed the Bab on three occasions – from becoming a Babi and eventually attaining martyrdom. I have already explained why the Bab’s laws were so severe. Whether or not I would have recognized the Bab is a great question, as I honestly don’t think I would have because it takes a great deal of insight to recognize the Messenger of God for each era, but in this context it is irrelevant because the fact of the matter is that many people DID follow him and many WERE openly massacred on the streets and died for him.

    And that’s another thing, by the way: I’m getting the impression that you think the Babis did all of the massacring in the late 1840s-early 1850s, which is historically inaccurate. There were only a couple of instances, and mind you none of them happened during the Bab’s ministry. There is an entire chapter in H.M. Balyuzi’s “Baha’u’llah: The King of Glory” called “Babi Martyrs of 1852”. You might want to peruse that if you can, and the entire book while you’re at it.

    The Bab’s religion and the Bayan were not meant to last. They came. They went. Their duration of validity has long since expired. Again, the bulk of the Bayan is not relevant to our religion anymore. If we’re going to discuss issues, please make them Baha’i issues.

    Regards,
    Adib

    Reply
  14. Adib

    January 15, 2009 7:21 pm

    The Bab also stated this regarding his role compared to Baha’u’llah’s:

    “For all that hath been exalted in the Bayan is but as a ring upon My hand, and I Myself am, verily, but a ring upon the hand of Him Whom God shall make manifest–glorified be His mention! He turneth it as He pleaseth, for whatsoever He pleaseth, and through whatsoever He pleaseth. He, verily, is the Help in Peril, the Most High.” (Selections From the Writings of the Báb, p. 168)

    This further affirms Baha’u’llah’s ability to do whatsoever he wished regarding the Bayan.

    Reply
  15. dawn

    January 16, 2009 6:34 am

    Dear hossein, crispin and adib,

    1-Its seems like you are turning a blind eye towards who Bahaullah prayed for and trying to justify his prayers. Let me put it like this: Suppose there is a king leading an imperialist government who has the blood of many innocent people dripping from his hands and causing many wars (Alexander II ). A minister of this king (prince dolgourki) for whatever reason helps another person (bahaullah) get out of prison or escape capital punishment. Now knowing how ruthless the king and his government are Bahaullah should only, at most thank the minister or the king for the certain act they performed for him. But No, He goes to much higher levels, levels that are completely unacceptable. He does the following (all quoted from god passes by):
    a- He calls the imperialist war mongering government: “the HIGHLY ESTEEMED government.”
    b- He calls Alexander II (his hands filthy with the blood of innocent people) :”His Imperial MAJESTY, the MOST GREAT Emperor”.
    c- And he asks god to assist him:” may God, exalted and glorified be He, ASSIST him”
    Now I will give an example. Suppose Bin laden or saddam hussein helped someone for any reason. Knowing that these two are ruthless criminals he would at least thank them for that specific task only, he wouldn’t go about saying to saddam and bin laden: ”Your highly esteemed government, you Majesty, the most great emperor, may god assist you”!!!

    2->>How, then, could Baha’u’llah rationally pray for *transient actions* which run counter to the standards he has set?
    Answer: that’s why I don’t believe in him. Because of these contradictions.

    3->>It is obvious that he is not asking God to aid him in his destructive campaigns, then, but rather to *help guide him to Baha’u’llah and the standards he has set for kings and queens*.
    a-you paraphrased bahaullahs words which you are forbidden to do according to your own faith.
    b- Actually by seeing similar scripts and prayers from abdulbaha we see that he clearly means an assistance that is not about guidance:
    “All friends should pray for the LONG LIFE and GOVERNMENT and INCREASE OF SUPPORTERS of his HIGHLY ESTEEMED MAJESTY the GREAT EMPEROR alexander III and for the LOVERS OF HIS GREAT MAJESTIC GOVERNMENT, because of great tablets from the holy land which translate and summarize to the following: This wronged group must always have in mind the protection and JUSTICE of the ILLUMINATED Russian GOVERNMENT and must always ask god the almighty for the SUPPORT and STANDING of the GREAT EMPEROR and MERCIFUL general.” (Masabihe hedyayt (the lights of guidance), volume 2 page 282, author: azizullah soleymani, published by the Bahai institute for publishing in IRAN (before the Iranian revolution))
    P.S. Remember what shoghi said:“A HARSH POLICY OF REPRESSION, initiated by himself (Alexander II) and followed by his successor, Alexander III”

    4-Regarding miracles I am still waiting for three miracles PERFORMED by bahaullah from your own books. I didn’t ask you to show me a claim that: “we were going to perform a miracle but the clergies didn’t accept or “they chickened out” or they were performed in private”. You claim that the prophets before Bahaullah sometimes didn’t show miracles so Bahaullah did the same. Agreed. But theose same prophets also showed many miracles which are all recorded in religious scripts. In the case of bahallah even in bahai books we see no miracles performed by him, not a single one but we always see excuses and baseless claims:”we never did it because no one would believe, just like all prophets who didn’t show miracles to some people, we were going to do it but they would refuse, they chickened out, …”

    5->> the letters about the possible release of Baha’u’llah: what would you do if I showed them to you?
    It would be very nice of you if you showed them to me (if they exist). Maybe I will be guided.

    6-Some of your claims seriously lack any proof and most are baseless lies. If not at least give the references to the following:
    a-“Did you know that an Islamic hadith says that after the Mahdi appears He and all His companions shall be massacred except one”.
    b- “God said that should anyone falsely attribute his sayings as coming from God, the Lord will take hold of him and cut his life vein.”
    c-“the miracles in Islam are according to the Quran itself are not a sufficient proof”
    d-“Did you not hear the hadith which says: there is no coercion in belief; for you is your religion and for me is mine. La ikraha fi al din lakum dinakum wa li didni.”

    Reply
  16. admin

    January 16, 2009 8:49 am

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    Comments for articles on IPW close six days after the original posting. Thus, comments on this article will close in less than 24 hours. If you wish to continue your discussion via email, please write to us at neysan@iranpresswatch.org and we will put you in contact accordingly.

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    Reply
  17. Adib

    January 16, 2009 11:32 am

    Dear Dawn,

    >A minister of this king (prince dolgourki) for whatever reason helps another person (bahaullah) get out of prison or escape capital punishment.
    I already told you he was innocent. See my post above and the reference provided.

    >Now knowing how ruthless the king and his government are Bahaullah should only, at most thank the minister or the king for the certain act they performed for him. But No, He goes to much higher levels, levels that are completely unacceptable. He does the following (all quoted from god passes by):

    Again, this Czar is not the only unpopular ruler that Baha’u’llah praised. He is speaking to the Shah in a kindly tongue so that he may be drawn to the message of Baha’u’llah. If my unauthoritative interpretation poses a problem for you, then here are the exact words from Baha’u’llah to that same Czar elsewhere reaffirming my statement:

    “O Czar of Russia! Incline thine ear unto the voice of God, the King, the Holy, and turn thou unto Paradise, the Spot wherein abideth He Who, among the Concourse on high, beareth the most excellent titles, and Who, in the kingdom of creation, is called by the name of God, the Effulgent, the All-Glorious. Beware that nothing deter thee from setting thy face towards thy Lord, the Compassionate, the Most Merciful. We, verily, have heard the thing for which thou didst supplicate thy Lord, whilst secretly communing with Him. Wherefore, the breeze of My loving-kindness wafted forth, and the sea of My mercy surged, and We answered thee in truth. Thy Lord, verily, is the All-Knowing, the All-Wise. Whilst I lay, chained and fettered, in the prison of Tihrán, one of thy ministers extended Me his aid. Wherefore hath God ordained for thee a station which the knowledge of none can comprehend except His knowledge. Beware lest thou barter away this sublime station.” (Baha’u’llah, Suratu’l-Haykal, cited in “Epistle to the Son of the Wolf, p. 57)

    There. That was Baha’u’llah’s goal and intent.
    >b- He calls Alexander II (his hands filthy with the blood of innocent people) :”His Imperial MAJESTY, the MOST GREAT Emperor”.
    I think you should read “The Summons of the Lord of Hosts” by Baha’u’llah. In that work, he sends messages to multiple rulers of the world – such as Napoleon III, Queen Victoria, Pope Pius IX, and Kaiser Wilhelm – and later reprimands and scolds them when they all (except Victoria) repudiate his message. His kind tone was employed in his messages to these people to draw them closer to recognizing his cause:

    “A kindly tongue is the lodestone of the hearts of men. It is the bread of the spirit, it clotheth the words with meaning, it is the fountain of the light of wisdom and understanding.” (Epistle to the Son of the Wolf, p. 15)

    >c- And he asks god to assist him:” may God, exalted and glorified be He, ASSIST him”

    “And when this Wronged One [Baha’u’llah] went forth out of 22 His prison, We journeyed, in pursuance of the order of His Majesty the Sháh—may God, exalted be He, protect him…” (Baha’u’llah, Epistle to the Son of the Wolf, pp. 21-22)

    This is almost 40 years after Baha’u’llah was exiled from Iran, and he is STILL asking God to help the Shah. Doesn’t get much worse than the man who essentially made your life a living hell. He cared for these people spiritually, not contingently. See my above responses.

    >Regarding miracles I am still waiting for three miracles PERFORMED by bahaullah from your own books.

    If you want lava raining from the sky, it’s not happening. Please do not do what the Arabs did to Muhammad and try to make a magician out of a Messenger of God. Miracles are not valid proofs because nobody has seen them for themselves, and the greatest miracle is the message he brought to humanity. If you disagree, then that’s fine, you’re entitled to your own opinion. And yes, the mullahs DID chicken out in that instance; they gathered to give Baha’u’llah a miracle to perform and they never came to a consensus. Keep in mind that Baha’u’llah DID agree to perform one if they could come up with one, but the mullahs could not even do that.

    Reply
  18. Crispin

    January 16, 2009 1:09 pm

    Dear Adib

    Thanks for the wonderful post.

    I see your point as being the same as mine: He was warned, “Beware lest thou barter away this sublime station.” It was the Minister who took action, no the Big Boss. I see that Dawn objects to the Emperor being praised. I do not see that the Emperor did anything other than to employ a sensible and fair Minister. It is normal etiquette to praise the Boss for things done by underlings, at least in my culture.

    This magician business is also interesting. People take it that if someone can routinely do something that is beyond the technical understanding of an audience, he is a magician or a Man from God. I can’t see the helpfulness of that, yet people talk about it all the time.

    There was a National Geographic show on last night about several people who lived in the time of Jesus all of whom performed healing miracles. Personally I consider the Revelation of the Surih of Joseph by the Báb in such a short time a miracle. And it is there to read.

    Finally Adib, thank you for illuminating the matter of the wrenching of the initial followers away from the spiritual misery into which Persia had fallen at that time. I would interpret the injunction to tear up the cemeteries as referring to the mental place of the spiritually dead where the people congregated in their hearts. To me it has inner meaning. It is interesting how people tend to refer to Revelation as having only literal meaning.

    Destroying a physical graveyard does nothing at all. Overthrowing the dead in heart leads to enlightenment – or could! Similarly, the ‘books’ being destroyed are sets of teachings that accumulated over the years by the pen of the self-closing eyes of fanatical mullahs and vain leaders. As long as the followers of the Báb were hostage to that fabric of the spiritually degerate society in which they lived, it would have remained difficult to establish an understanding of the independent character of the His Revelation and the one that was to follow immediately.

    As you say, its purpose was to prepare the way. My understanding of it is that it all deals with the spiritual realm. Those pre-occupied with material things of course perhaps interpret it materially and remain imprisoned in those thoughts and interpretations. The most great prison is the prison of self.

    Very interesting.

    Thanks everyone. The consultation will time out shortly.

    Regards to all
    Crispin

    Reply

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