June 30, 2022

Some awe-inspiring “salient features” of the dawn-breakers at Fort Tabarsi – 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 20, 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’)