June 30, 2022

Some awe-inspiring “salient features” of the dawn-breakers – summarized by Shoghi Effendi

It will be unnecessary to attempt even an abbreviated narrative of this tragic episode, however grave its import, however much misconstrued by adverse chroniclers and historians. A glance over its salient features will suffice for the purpose of these pages.

  • We note, as we conjure up the events of this great tragedy, the fortitude, the intrepidity, the discipline and the resourcefulness of its heroes, contrasting sharply with the turpitude, the cowardice, the disorderliness and the inconstancy of their opponents.
  • We observe the sublime patience, the noble restraint exercised by one of its principal actors, the lion-hearted Mullá Husayn, who persistently refused to unsheathe his sword until an armed and angry multitude, uttering the foulest invectives, had gathered at a farsang’s distance from Bárfurúsh to block his way, and had mortally struck down seven of his innocent and staunch companions.
  • We are filled with admiration for the tenacity of faith of that same Mullá Husayn, demonstrated by his resolve to persevere in sounding the adhán, while besieged in the caravanserai of Sabsih-Maydán, though three of his companions, who had successively ascended to the roof of the inn, with the express purpose of performing that sacred rite, had been instantly killed by the bullets of the enemy.
  • We marvel at the spirit of renunciation that prompted those sore pressed sufferers to contemptuously ignore the possessions left behind by their fleeing enemy; that led them to discard their own belongings, and content themselves with their steeds and swords; that induced the father of Badí‘, one of that gallant company, to fling unhesitatingly by the roadside the satchel, full of turquoises which he had brought from his father’s mine in Níshápúr; that led Mírzá Muhammad-Taqíy-i-Juvayní to cast away a sum equivalent in value in silver and gold; and impelled those same companions to disdain, and refuse even to touch, the costly furnishings and the coffers of gold and silver which the demoralized and shame-laden Prince Mihdí-Qulí Mírzá, the commander of the army of Mázindarán and a brother of Muhammad Sháh, had left behind in his headlong flight from his camp.
  • We cannot but esteem the passionate sincerity with which Mullá Husayn pleaded with the Prince, and the formal assurance he gave him, disclaiming, in no uncertain terms, any intention on his part or that of his fellow-disciples of usurping the authority of the Sháh or of subverting the foundations of his state.

June 19, 2022

The eleven-month contest at Fort Tabarsi

The audacity of Mullá Husayn who, at the command of the Báb, had attired his head with the green turban worn and sent to him by his Master, who had hoisted the Black Standard, the unfurling of which would, according to the Prophet Muhammad, herald the advent of the vicegerent of God on earth, and who, mounted on his steed, was marching at the head of two hundred and two of his fellow-disciples to meet and lend his assistance to Quddús in the Jazíriy-i-Khadrá (Verdant Isle)—his audacity was the signal for a clash the reverberations of which were to resound throughout the entire country. The contest lasted no less than eleven months. Its theatre was for the most part the forest of Mázindarán. Its heroes were the flower of the Báb’s disciples. Its martyrs comprised no less than half of the Letters of the Living, not excluding Quddús and Mullá Husayn, respectively the last and the first of these Letters. 

- Shoghi Effendi  (‘God Passes By’)

June 12, 2022

Growth of the Faith between 1953 and the launching of the Nine Year Plan in 1964: 12 NSAs and slightly more than 600 LSAs to 70 NSAs and 4600 LSAs

Once more, dear friends, we enter the battle but with an incomparably greater array than that which embarked upon the World Crusade in 1953. To that small force of twelve national communities, now veteran campaigners, have been added fifty-seven new legions, each under the generalship of a National Spiritual Assembly, each destined to become a veteran of this and future campaigns. That Crusade began with slightly more than six hundred Local Spiritual Assemblies, the greater part of which were situated in Persia, North America and Europe; the home-fronts now comprise nearly four thousand six hundred Local Spiritual Assemblies scattered throughout the continents and islands of the world. We begin this Plan with a tremendous momentum, exemplified by the addition, since last Ridvan, of over four thousand new centres and thirteen National Spiritual Assemblies, and by the beginning, in several countries, of that entry by troops into the Cause of God prophesied by 'Abdu'l-Baha and so eagerly anticipated by Him. 

- The Universal House of Justice  (Message to the Baha'is of the world, April 1964; ‘Messages from the Universal House of justice 1963-1986’)

June 1, 2022

Growth of the Faith between 1957 to 1975

In the eighteen years since that achievement, [the completion of the International Archives Building in 1957] the community of the Most Great Name has grown rapidly in size and influence:

  • from twenty-six National Spiritual Assemblies to one hundred and nineteen,
  • from some one thousand to seventeen thousand Local Spiritual Assemblies,
  • and from four thousand five hundred localities to over seventy thousand…

- The Universal House of Justice  (From a message dated 5 June 1975; ‘Messages from the Universal House of Justice 1963-1986’)

May 25, 2022

1975: Fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States

24 April 1975

To the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of the United States

PORTENTOUS OCCASION FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY FORMAL ESTABLISHMENT NATIONAL SPIRITUAL ASSEMBLY BAHA'IS UNITED STATES RECALL WITH PRIDE ADMIRATION PRE-EMINENT STATION CONFERRED AMERICAN BAHA'I COMMUNITY CENTRE COVENANT PREPONDERATING ROLE ALREADY ASSUMED WORLD-WIDE PROMOTION FAITH GLORIOUS ACHIEVEMENTS UNMATCHED RANGE MAGNITUDE ENTIRE BAHA'I WORLD PAST HALF CENTURY. CALL UPON THIS HIGHLY BLESSED DISTINGUISHED COMMUNITY CONTEMPLATE ITS UNDOUBTED DUTIES PRIVILEGES PURGE ITS SOUL ALL WORLDLY ENTANGLEMENTS REDEDICATE ITS ENERGIES RESOURCES IMMEDIATE TASKS ARISE SINGLE-MINDEDLY PERFORM HISTORIC MISSION RENDER SUCH SERVICES ATTAIN SUCH SACRIFICIAL HEIGHTS WORTHY BRILLIANT FOREBEARS HEROIC AGE FAITH.

UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

(Messages from the Universal House of Justice, ‘1963-1986’)

May 12, 2022

The condition of the government of Persia at the time of the Báb’s “formal assumption… of the authority of the promised Qá’im”

Muhammad Sháh, at so perilous an hour, was meanwhile rapidly sinking under the weight of his physical infirmities. The shallow-minded Hájí Mírzá Áqásí, now the pivot of state affairs, exhibited a vacillation and incompetence that seemed to increase with every extension in the range of his grave responsibilities. At one time he would feel inclined to support the verdict of the ‘ulamás; at another he would censure their aggressiveness and distrust their assertions; at yet another, he would relapse into mysticism, and, wrapt in his reveries, lose sight of the gravity of the emergency that confronted him. 

- Shoghi Effendi  (‘God Passes By’)

April 5, 2022

January 1975: Acquisition of the house of 'Abdu'llah Pasha' in 'Akka – birthplace of Shoghi Effendi

1920s (Baha’i Media Bank)
JOYOUSLY ANNOUNCE SUCCESSFUL CONCLUSION LENGTHY DELICATE NEGOTIATIONS RESULTING ACQUISITION BY PURCHASE HOLY HOUSE CENTRE COVENANT 'ABDU'L-BAHA BIRTHPLACE BELOVED GUARDIAN SHOGHI EFFENDI. HISTORIC PROPERTY ADJACENT BARRACKS MOST GREAT PRISON COMPRISES LAND AREA APPROXIMATING SEVEN THOUSAND SQUARE METRES INCLUDES OTHER STRUCTURES WITHIN COMPLEX ASSURING PERMANENT PROTECTION HOUSE VISITED BY MANY PILGRIMS TURN CENTURY SCENE HISTORIC VISIT FIRST GROUP WESTERN PILGRIMS. PLANS BEING PREPARED RESTORATION HOLY HOUSE BEAUTIFICATION GROUNDS AS ADDITIONAL PLACE PILGRIMAGE WORLD CENTRE WHEN CIRCUMSTANCES FUNDS PERMIT. OFFER HUMBLE THANKSGIVING BAHA'U'LLAH THIS GREAT BLESSING.

UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE  (Messages from the Universal House of Justice, ‘1963-1986’)

March 26, 2022

1848: First "systematic campaign" against the Faith by civil and ecclesiastical powers combined

…when Muhammad Sháh finally succumbed to his illness, precipitating by his death the downfall of his favorite and all-powerful minister, Hájí Mírzá Áqásí, who, soon stripped of the treasures he had amassed, fell into disgrace, was expelled from the capital, and sought refuge in Karbilá. The seventeen year old Násiri’d-Dín Mírzá ascended the throne, leaving the direction of affairs to the obdurate, the iron-hearted Amír-Nizám, Mírzá Taqí Khán, who, without consulting his fellow-ministers, decreed that immediate and condign punishment be inflicted on the hapless Bábís. Governors, magistrates and civil servants, throughout the provinces, instigated by the monstrous campaign of vilification conducted by the clergy, and prompted by their lust for pecuniary rewards, vied in their respective spheres with each other in hounding and heaping indignities on the adherents of an outlawed Faith. For the first time in the Faith’s history a systematic campaign in which the civil and ecclesiastical powers were banded together was being launched against it, a campaign that was to culminate in the horrors experienced by Bahá’u’lláh in the Síyáh-Chál of Ṭihrán and His subsequent banishment to ‘Iráq. Government, clergy and people arose, as one man, to assault and exterminate their common enemy. 

- Shoghi Effendi  (‘God Passes By’)

March 17, 2022

1848-1850: “the bloodiest and most dramatic of the Heroic Age of the Bahá’í Era”

The Báb’s captivity in a remote corner of Ádhirbáyján, immortalized by the proceedings of the Conference of Badasht, and distinguished by such notable developments as the public declaration of His mission, the formulation of the laws of His Dispensation and the establishment of His Covenant, was to acquire added significance through the dire convulsions that sprang from the acts of both His adversaries and His disciples. The commotions that ensued, as the years of that captivity drew to a close, and that culminated in His own martyrdom, called forth a degree of heroism on the part of His followers and a fierceness of hostility on the part of His enemies which had never been witnessed during the first three years of His ministry. Indeed, this brief but most turbulent period may be rightly regarded as the bloodiest and most dramatic of the Heroic Age of the Bahá’í Era. 

- Shoghi Effendi  (‘God Passes By’)

February 7, 2022

January 12, 2022

1992: The Baha’i Faith "is represented in every country on earth”

The Faith of Bahá’u’lláh is represented in every country on earth. The sudden change in the political climate, no doubt by intervention of God’s Major Plan, opened vast regions to the penetration of the divine teachings, primarily in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc countries. The opportunities created by this change made possible the settlement of Knights of Bahá’u’lláh in the last virgin territories that remained from Shoghi Effendi’s Ten Year World Crusade. They also impelled the launching at Ridván 1990 of the subsidiary Two Year Plan for those regions. This supplementary Plan was a spectacular success, not only in terms of expansion in the many countries involved, but also in the diversity of the strata represented by the new believers in these countries, in the volume and variety of Bahá’í literature published and in the array of Bahá’í institutions established during that short time. The Bahá’í world was highly stimulated by these developments, and a number of countries elsewhere recorded significant successes in the teaching work… 

- The Universal House of Justice  (Ridvan 1992 message)