Posted by: samandal | October 16, 2009

Bahá’u’lláh, III

Díyáfat-i-‘Ilm, the Feast of Knowledge

“Grandeur is My mantle and magnificence is My loincloth.”                               (Hadíth Qudsí)

Bahá’u’lláh returned to Baghdád on 19 March 1856 to find the Bábí community in utter disarray. He began to work to revive the dispirited movement, both in Iraq and Iran, and to give it a new interpretation of its mission. He emphasized the importance of the mystical path and outlined the purpose of the spiritual life. He provided the Bábís with an account of their own doctrines, and was clearly recognized as the pre-eminent Bábí leader, both within the Bábí community and well beyond it. He gained sympathy from Sunní and Shí‘í clerics, and was invited to Istanbul by the Ottoman authorities. He wed a third wife, Gawhar, while in Baghdád.

“O My servants, I have forbidden oppression for Myself and have made it forbidden amongst you, so do not oppress one another.”                                                (Hadíth Qudsí)

Prior to his departure for Istanbul, Bahá’u’lláh stayed outside Baghdád for twelve days in the Najíbiyyih Garden, which he named Ridván (Paradise). Here he first announced his prophetic claim to his disciples and commanded them to avoid sedition. Together with his family and companions, he arrived in Istanbul on 16 August 1863. There they remained until 1 December, when they were then transferred to Edirne as a result of pressure from Mírzá Husayn Khán, the ambassador of Iran. The entourage remained in Edirne for four-and-a-half years (12 December 1863–12 August 1868).

“I was a Hidden Treasure Who yearned to be revealed; all creatures were created to intimately love Me.”                                                                                      (Hadíth Qudsí)

Tensions between Bahá’u’lláh and Subh-i-Azal reached an impasse as the claims of Bahá’u’lláh to be the Bábí promised one undermined the authority assumed by Azal. In Edirne, Azal began to conspire against Bahá’u’lláh and made an attempt to poison him. Bahá’u’lláh became quite ill, and the effects of the poison turned his hair white and left him with a tremor in his hands that remained for the rest of his life. He then made a formal announcement to be He Whom God Shall Make Manifest and began to refer to his disciples as “the people of Bahá” (i.e., Bahá’ís). He then secluded himself and told the Bábís to choose between himself and Azal.

“He who mentions Me in himself I will mention him in Myself, and he who mentions Me in an assembly, him I will mention in an assembly better than his.”                   (Hadíth Qudsí)