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Messages to the Bahá’í World: 1950–1957

  • Author:
  • Shoghi Effendi

  • Source:
  • US Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1971 edition
  • Pages:
  • 175
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Pages 88-90

World-Wide Reverberations

Mysterious dispensations of ever-watchful Providence, hastening, through turmoil and trial, the triumph of His undefeatable Faith, dictating at this critical hour the sudden deterioration of the situation confronting the largest community of the Bahá’í world, as evidenced by the violent recrudescence of the persecution afflicting intermittently, for over a century, its members residing in Bahá’u’lláh’s native land.
Following the seizure and the destruction of the dome of the community’s national administrative headquarters, the occupation of similar institutions in all provinces, the government declaration to the Majlis outlawing the Faith and a virulent press and radio campaign, distorting its history, calumniating its Founders, misrepresenting its tenets and obscuring its aims and purposes, a series of atrocities has been perpetrated in rapid succession throughout the length and breadth of the land against members of a sorely-tried community.
The House of the Báb, the foremost Shrine in Írán, has been twice desecrated and severely damaged; Bahá’u’lláh’s ancestral Home at Takur occupied; the house of the Báb’s uncle razed to the ground; shops, farms plundered; crops burned, livestock destroyed; bodies disinterred in the cemeteries and mutilated; private houses broken into, damaged and looted; adults execrated and beaten; young women abducted and forced to marry Muslims; children 89 mocked, reviled, beaten and expelled from the schools; boycott by butchers and bakers imposed; fifteen-year-old girl raped; eleven-month-old baby trampled underfoot; and pressure brought to bear upon believers to recant their Faith.
More recently a family of seven, the oldest eighty, the youngest nineteen, residing in Hurmuzak of the Province of Yazd, were set upon by a mob two thousand strong, accompanied by music of drums and trumpets, which hacked them to pieces with spades and axes. Meanwhile an official circular has been issued by the Prime Minister, addressed to Government Departments ordering the expulsion of all Bahá’í employes refusing to recant.
This highly distressing situation threatens to worsen during Muharram and Safar.
Reacting to these barbarous acts, over a thousand groups and local Assemblies of the Bahá’í world appealed telegraphically to the authorities, and all National Assemblies addressed written communications to the Sháh, the government and parliament, pleading for justice and protection.
Finding written pleas unanswered, an appeal has been lodged with United Nations by representatives of the International Bahá’í Community at Geneva. Copies of the appeal were delivered to representatives of member nations of the Social and Economic Council, the Director of the Human Rights Division and certain specialized agencies of nongovernmental organizations with consultative status. Furthermore, President Eisenhower who, according to the newspapers, first mentioned the persecutions at a Press Conference in Washington, has been appealed to by the National representatives of the American Bahá’í Community and all Assemblies and groups in the United States to intervene on behalf of their oppressed sister community.
Whatever the outcome of the present heart-rending events, one fact emerges clear and indisputable. God’s infant Faith, provided, through the operation of a quarter-century-long process associated with the first epoch of the formative age of the Faith, with the machinery of a divinely appointed Administrative Order, and utilizing in the course of the succeeding epoch, through the formulation of a series of national plans, culminating in the launching of the World Crusade, the newly-born administrative agencies for the systematic propagation of the Faith, is now gradually emerging from obscurity in the wake of the ordeal convulsing the overwhelming majority of the followers of the Faith. 90
The world-wide reverberations of this nation-wide commotion will be hailed by posterity as the mighty blast of God’s trumpet designed to awaken, through the instrumentality of its oldest, most redoubtable, most vicious, most fanatical adversaries, countless multitudes, and the Chancelleries and Chief Magistrates of the East and of the West, to the existence and implications of the Faith proclaimed by His Messenger in this Day. This long-desired, ardently-hoped-for emergence, itself a long-drawn-out process, is bound to pave the way for the emancipation of this same Faith from the fetters of orthodoxy in Islamic countries, as well as the ultimate recognition of the independent character of the Revelation of Bahá’u’lláh in His homeland.
Owing to the grievous losses sustained, and the necessity to demonstrate world-wide Bahá’í solidarity, an “Aid the Persecuted” Fund has been inaugurated for the purpose of bringing immediate relief to the despoiled and homeless victims. Myself contributing the equivalent of eighteen thousand dollars for this noble purpose. However conscious I am of the manifold demands on the adherents of the Faith, I am impelled to invite them to participate through contributions to be transmitted through their respective National Assemblies.
Moreover, undeterred by the obstacles placed in the path of the crusaders of Bahá’u’lláh, the historic decision has been arrived at to raise the Mother Temple of Africa in the City of Kampala, situated in its heart and constituting a supreme consolation to the masses of oppressed valiant brethren in the Cradle of the Faith. Every continent of the globe except Australasia will thereby pride itself on and derive direct spiritual benefits from its own Mashriqu’l-Adhkár. Befitting recognition will, moreover, have been accorded the marvelous expansion of the Faith and the amazing multiplications of its administrative institutions throughout this continent, a continent fully deserving of a House of Worship, complementing the four national Hazíratu’l-Quds already established, wherein the spirit of an unconquerable Faith can dwell, within whose walls the African adherents of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh can congregate, and from which anthems of praise glorifying the Most Great Name can ascend to the Concourse of the Abhá Kingdom.
Transmit message to Hands of the Cause and National Assemblies.

[Cablegram, August 23, 1955]