Baha’i Faith : The Case of the Traveller, Part 3 of 3

Babism’s Background

“The founder of the Sheykhi school, with which in its origin the Babi movement is so closely connected, was Sheykh Ahmad of Ahsa (often, but apparently erroneously,written Lahsa) [1752-53-1826-27 AD]…he again visited Persia towards the end of his life, and that on this occasion he passed through Kazvin, where he paid a visit to HajiMulla Muhammad Taki.

The latter questioned him concerning his views on the resurrection, and, after a violent altercation, declared them to be heretical. In consequence of this many other divines, who had hitherto regarded Sheykh Ahmad almost as a saint, began to look askance at him or even to display open hostility…

The chief points wherein Sheykh Ahamd’s doctrine is regarded as heterodox are stated as follows. He believed that the body of man was compounded of parts derived from each of the nine heavens and the four elements; that the grosser elemental part perished irrevocably at death; and that only the more subtle celestial portion would appear at the resurrection…he believed himself to be under the special guidance of the Imams, especially, as it would appear, the Imam Ja’far-i-Sadik.

He regarded the Imams as creative forces, quoting in support of this view the expression~~~ ‘God, the Best of Creators,’ occurring in Kur’an xxiii, 14; ‘for,’ said he, ‘if God be the Best of Creators He cannot be the sole Creator.’ He also adduced in support of this view the tradition wherein the following words are attributed to ‘Ali:-~~~ ‘I am the Creator of the heavens and the earth’ He even went so far as to assert that in reciting the opening chapter of the Kur’an (~~~) the worshipper should fix his thoughts on ‘Ali as he repeats the words ~~~ ‘Thee do we worship’…Sheykh Ahmad Ahsa’i was succeeded at his death by his disciple Haji Seyyid Kazim of Resht [1793-94-1843-44]…

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Baha’i Faith: The Case of the Traveller, Part 2 of 3

Allegations Against the Babis and Baha’is

In this essay we present excerpts from A Traveller’s Narrative. We present some quotes from some of the works that the editor cites.

Reference is made to a book titled Nasikhu’t-Tawarikh, written by Mirza Taki Mustawfi described as “a general history of the world…All that relates to the Babis is contained inthe second and third parts of the main volume and in the supplement.”1

p. 65 of that work states:”The Babis go out to bury their dead, find them decapitated, and in retaliation exhume and decapitate the Musulman corpses and fix their heads on posts round the gate of the fortress.

“Reference is made to a seven volume work titled Rawzatu’s-Safa, the first six composed by Mirkhwand (d. A.D. 1498) and the seventh composed by his grandson Khwandamir (d. A.D. 1534).2

p. 168-169 of that work states: “The assassination is planned by twelve Babis, who arrange that the attempt shall take place on the morning of Sunday the 28th of Shawwal A.H. 1268 (August 15th, A.D.1852) as the Shah is riding out on a hunting expedition from his summer residence at Niyavaran…Of the twelve assassins, six fail to arrive in time, while three lag behind – The three who are ready approach the Shah as petitioners, surround him, and fire twoshots at him – The Shah’s retainers come up and kill one of the conspirators – Another shot is fired wounding the Shah in the shoulder.”

On this issue the Baha’i add a bit of confusion. J. E. Esslemont reports that one of the Bab’s followers fired a pistol at the Shah and injured him. Shoghi Effendi and John Huddleston say that it was two men and they wounded the Shah. Jessyca Russell Gaver,a nother Baha’i author, reports that “two young boys shot at him but missed.”3

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