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Tablets of Abdul-Baha Abbas

  • Author:
  • ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

  • Source:
  • Bahá’í Publishing Committee, 1909 edition
  • Pages:
  • 730
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Page 1

“For the information of those who know little or nothing…”

For the information of those who know little or nothing of the Bahai Revelation, we quote the following account translated from the (French) Encyclopaedia of Larousse:—
Bahaism the religion of the disciples of Baha’o’llah, an outcome of Babism.—Mirza Husain Ali Nuri Baha’o’llah was born at Teheran in 1817 A. D. From 1844 he was one of the first adherents of the Bab, and devoted himself to the pacific propagation of his doctrine in Persia. After the death of the Bab he was, with the principal Babis, exiled to Baghdad, and later to Constantinople and Adrianople, under the surveillance of the Ottoman Government. It was in the latter city that he openly declared his mission. He was “He whom God would make manifest,” whom the Bab had announced in his writings, the great Manifestation of God, promised for the last days; and in his letters to the principal Rulers of the States of Europe he invited them to join him in establishing religion and universal peace. From this time, the Babis who acknowledged him became Bahais. The sultan then exiled him (1868 A. D.) to Acca in Palestine, where he composed the greater part of his doctrinal works, and where he died in 1892 A. D. (May 29). He had confided to his son, Abbas Effendi Abdul-Baha, the work of spreading the religion and continuing the connection between the Bahais of all parts of the world. In point of fact, there are Bahais everywhere, not only in Mohammedan countries, but also in all the countries of Europe, as well as in the United States, Canada, Japan, India, etc. This is because Baha’o’llah has known how to transform Babism into a universal religion, which is presented as the fulfillment and completion of all the ancient faiths. The Jews await the Messiah, the Christians the return of Christ, the Moslem the Mahdi, the Buddhists the fifth Buddha, the Zoroastrians Shah Bahram, the Hindoos the reincarnation of Krishna, and the Atheists—a better social organization! Baha’o’llah represents all these, and thus destroys the rivalries and the enmities of the different religions; reconciles them in their primitive purity, and frees them from the corruption of dogmas and rites. For Bahaism has no clergy, no religious ceremonial, no public prayers; its only dogma is belief in God and in his Manifestations (Zoroaster, Moses, Jesus, et al., Baha’o’llah). The principal works of Baha’o’llah are the Kitab-ul-Ighan, the Kitab-ul-Akdas, the Kitab-ul-Ahd, and numerous letters or tablets addressed to sovereigns or to private individuals. Ritual holds no place in the religion, which must be expressed in all the actions of life, and accomplished in neighborly love. Every one must have an occupation. The education of children is enjoined and regulated. No one has the power to receive confession of sins, or to give absolution. The priests of the existing religions should renounce celibacy, and should preach by their example, mingling in the life of the people. Monogamy is universally recommended, etc. Questions not treated of are left to the civil law of each country, and to the decisions of the Bait-ul-Adl, or House of Justice, instituted by Baha’o’llah. Respect toward the Head of the State is a part of respect toward God. A universal language, and the creation of tribunals of arbitration between nations, are to suppress wars. “You are all leaves of the same tree, and drops of the same sea,” Baha’o’llah has said. Briefly, it is not so much a new religion as Religion renewed and unified, which is directed today by Abdul-Baha.—(Nouveau Larousse Illustre, supplement, p. 66.)