The religion has three central figures: the Báb (1819–1850), considered a herald who taught that God would soon send a prophet in the same way of Jesus or Muhammad and who was executed by Iranian authorities in 1850; Baháʼu'lláh (1817–1892), who claimed to be that prophet in 1863 and faced exile and imprisonment for most of his life; and his son, ʻAbdu'l-Bahá (1844–1921), who was released from confinement in 1908 and made teaching trips to Europe and the United States. The Baháʼí Faith stresses the unity of all people, explicitly rejecting racism and nationalism. Baháʼí sources since 1991 usually estimate the worldwide Baháʼí population to be above 5 million.  Following a protracted legal process culminating in a court ruling favorable to the Baháʼís, the interior minister of Egypt released a decree on 14 April 2009, amending the law to allow Egyptians who are not Muslim, Christian, or Jewish to obtain identification documents that list a dash in place of one of the three recognized religions.  In March 2018, two more Baháʼí students were expelled from universities in the cities of Zanjan and Gilan because of their religion. According to some estimates, the largest Baháʼí community in the world is in India, with 2.2 million Baháʼís, next is Iran, with 350,000, the US, with 150,000, and Brazil, with 60,000. The House of Justice then launched a nine-year plan in 1964, and a series of subsequent multi-year plans of varying length and goals followed, guiding the direction of the international Baháʼí community. , Since its inception the Baháʼí Faith has had involvement in socio-economic development beginning by giving greater freedom to women, promulgating the promotion of female education as a priority concern, and that involvement was given practical expression by creating schools, agricultural co-ops, and clinics.  The rights of Baháʼís have been restricted to greater or lesser extents in numerous other countries, including Egypt, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Iraq, Morocco, Yemen, and several countries in sub-Saharan Africa.  It is derived from the Arabic Baháʼ (بهاء), meaning "glory" or "splendor". ", Baháʼí institutions and community activities have been illegal under Egyptian law since 1960. Baháʼís annually elect local, regional, and national Spiritual Assemblies that govern the religion's affairs. Jan 16, 2015 - Classroom or homeschool resources to teach children about the Baha'i Faith. CBSE 10th & 12th Board Exam Date Sheet 2021: Release Date, Time & New Updates! The latter do not serve as clergy, which the Baháʼí Faith does not have. “the Baha’i Faith,”or “the Baha’i community.”. Every human is seen to have a duty to recognize God through his messengers, and to conform to their teachings. “He Who is your Lord, the All-Merciful, cherisheth in His heart the desire of beholding the entire human race as one soul and one body.”.  Three principles are central to these teachings: the unity of God, the unity of religion, and the unity of humanity. Jan 16, 2015 - Classroom or homeschool resources to teach children about the Baha'i Faith ..  During that campaign, initiated by Mulla Muhammad Taghi Falsafi, the Baha'i center in Tehran was demolished at the orders of Tehran military governor, General Timor Bakhtiar. 9. His father left a will that appointed ʻAbdu'l-Bahá as the leader of the Baháʼí community, and designated him as the "Centre of the Covenant", "Head of the Faith", and the sole authoritative interpreter of Baháʼu'lláh's writings. These clerical directives led to mob attacks and public executions.  The Baháʼí New Year corresponds to the traditional Iranian New Year, called Naw Rúz, and occurs on the vernal equinox, near 21 March, at the end of the month of fasting. The faith is moving around three core principle or doctrine on the basis of Baha’i teachings i.e. If there is a community center, often tours are available. (, Hvithamar, Warburg & Warmind, eds. ", On 14 May 2008, members of an informal body known as the "Friends" that oversaw the needs of the Baháʼí community in Iran were arrested and taken to Evin prison. The Baha'i faith has distinguished itself as a unique world religion because of its size (5 million members), its global scale (236 countries), its practical autonomy from its parent religion of Islam (there is little blurriness between the two), and for its doctrinal uniqueness, being monotheistic yet … The Bahá'í faith began to take its present form in 1844 in Iran. Doctrines of racism, nationalism, caste, social class, and gender-based hierarchy are seen as artificial impediments to unity. Letters written by Baháʼu'lláh to various people, including some heads of state, have been collected and assembled into a canon of Baháʼí scripture. See for example: In line with this is the thinking that the government encouraged the campaign to distract attention from more serious problems, including acute economic difficulties. Bahá'í at a glance. Baha’i faith symbol: The Bahai symbol of the nine-pointed star reflects the importance of the number for the Faith. The World Christian Encyclopediaestimated 7.1 million Baháʼís in the world in 2000, representing 218 countries, and 7.3 million in 2010 with the same source. Some measure of divine guidance is assumed for all of these texts.  From the time of the initial exile from Iran, tensions grew between him and Subh-i-Azal, the appointed leader of the Bábís, who did not recognize Baháʼu'lláh's claim. It is the most diverse religion on earth and a force for peace and unity around the world. (2005).  In the Baháʼí Faith, God is often referred to by titles and attributes (for example, the All-Powerful, or the All-Loving), and there is a substantial emphasis on monotheism.  The importance of self-exertion and service to humanity in one's spiritual life is emphasised further in Baháʼu'lláh's writings, where he states that work done in the spirit of service to humanity enjoys a rank equal to that of prayer and worship in the sight of God. , In 1937, Shoghi Effendi launched a seven-year plan for the Baháʼís of North America, followed by another in 1946. The number nine is the highest single-digit number symbolizes completement and the fulfillment of the expectations of all prior religions. [f] An approved and coordinated anti-Baháʼí campaign (to incite public passion against the Baháʼís) started in 1955 and it included the spreading of anti-Baháʼí propaganda on national radio stations and in official newspapers. Q: What's it like for Bahá'ís in Iran vs those in the west?  The Universal House of Justice remains the supreme governing body of the Baháʼí Faith, and its 9 members are elected every five years by the members of all National Spiritual Assemblies. In addition to the daily obligatory prayer, Baháʼís should offer daily devotional prayer and to meditate and study sacred scripture. The Lesser Covenant is viewed as an agreement between a Messenger of God and his followers and includes social practices and the continuation of authority in the religion. Bahá'í Faith is Compatible with Secular Facts. , Some of Baháʼu'lláh's most important writings include the Kitáb-i-Aqdas ("Most Holy Book"), which defines many laws and practices for individuals and society, the Kitáb-i-Íqán ("Book of Certitude"), which became the foundation of much of Baháʼí belief, and Gems of Divine Mysteries, which includes further doctrinal foundations. Such expulsions are administered by the National Spiritual Assembly and do not involve shunning. Bahá'u'lláh had written that `Abdu'l-Bahá had special powers, and that God would make sure that if `Abdu'l-Bahá explained anything that Bahá'u'lláh said, then the Bahá'ís should believe that explanation.  The followers of such divisions are regarded as Covenant-breakers and shunned, essentially excommunicated.. The Baháʼí marriage ceremony is simple; the only compulsory part of the wedding is the reading of the wedding vows prescribed by Baháʼu'lláh which both the groom and the bride read, in the presence of two witnesses. Shoghi Effendi, the head of the religion from 1921 to 1957, wrote the following summary of what he considered to be the distinguishing principles of Baháʼu'lláh's teachings, which, he said, together with the laws and ordinances of the Kitáb-i-Aqdas constitute the bedrock of the Baháʼí Faith: The independent search after truth, unfettered by superstition or tradition; the oneness of the entire human race, the pivotal principle and fundamental doctrine of the Faith; the basic unity of all religions; the condemnation of all forms of prejudice, whether religious, racial, class or national; the harmony which must exist between religion and science; the equality of men and women, the two wings on which the bird of human kind is able to soar; the introduction of compulsory education; the adoption of a universal auxiliary language; the abolition of the extremes of wealth and poverty; the institution of a world tribunal for the adjudication of disputes between nations; the exaltation of work, performed in the spirit of service, to the rank of worship; the glorification of justice as the ruling principle in human society, and of religion as a bulwark for the protection of all peoples and nations; and the establishment of a permanent and universal peace as the supreme goal of all mankind—these stand out as the essential elements [which Baháʼu'lláh proclaimed]. Drinking alcohol or to take drugs, unless prescribed by doctors, Gambling and Fanaticism are forbidden. , The Baháʼí calendar is based upon the calendar established by the Báb. Jobs of the Day–18 January 2021: Apply for 7400+ RMC, GSERC, CISF, Indian Railways and PSSSB, DRDO IRDE Apprentice 2021 Notification Out for 21 Vacancies, Apply @drdo.gov.in. It was founded by Baha'u'llah in Iran in the 19th century.  The Friends court case has been postponed several times, but was finally underway on 12 January 2010. 3. From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer dated 9 June 1932, Stockman, R. H. (2012).  The World Christian Encyclopedia estimated 7.1 million Baháʼís in the world in 2000, representing 218 countries, and 7.3 million in 2010 with the same source. The general functions of this body are defined through the writings of Baháʼu'lláh and clarified in the writings of Abdu'l-Bahá and Shoghi Effendi. [b] Established by Baháʼu'lláh in the 19th century, it initially developed in Persia and parts of the Middle East, where it has faced ongoing persecution since its inception.  By 2017 there were an estimated 40,000 small scale projects, 1,400 sustained projects, and 135 Baháʼí inspired organizations. Unity of God; Unity of religion; and Unity of humanity. This includes works by his son ʻAbdu'l-Bahá, and the Báb, who is regarded as Baháʼu'lláh's forerunner. The five-pointed star is the official symbol of the Baháʼí Faith, known as the Haykal ("temple"). These facts cannot be ignored any longer.  On 3 January 2010, Iranian authorities detained ten more members of the Baha'i minority, reportedly including Leva Khanjani, granddaughter of Jamaloddin Khanjani, one of seven Baha'i leaders jailed since 2008 and in February, they arrested his son, Niki Khanjani. `Abdu'l-Bahá also wrote a lot of letters and gave talks, and event… The Bahá'í New Year corresponds to the traditional Persian New Year, called Naw Rúz, and occurs on the vernal equinox, 21 March, at the end of the month of fasting. In the 2000 Millennium Forum of the United Nations a Baháʼí was invited as the only non-governmental speaker during the summit. UPSC IAS 2020 Exam: Click here to get the Complete 30 Days Study Plan to score high in Prelims. , The Baháʼí writings emphasize the essential equality of human beings, and the abolition of prejudice. Even the defence lawyers, who for two years have had minimal access to the defendants, had difficulty entering the courtroom.  His followers were therefore known as Bábís. Adherents: 5-7 million.  The Baháʼí week is familiar in that it consists of seven days, with each day of the week also named after an attribute of God. The writings of the Báb and Baháʼu'lláh are considered as divine revelation, the writings and talks of ʻAbdu'l-Bahá and the writings of Shoghi Effendi as authoritative interpretation, and those of the Universal House of Justice as authoritative legislation and elucidation. With unity as an essential teaching of the religion, Baháʼís follow an administration they believe is divinely ordained, and therefore see attempts to create schisms and divisions as efforts that are contrary to the teachings of Baháʼu'lláh. In Baháʼí belief, this process of progressive revelation will not end; it is, however, believed to be cyclical. The following are a few examples from Baháʼu'lláh's teachings on personal conduct that are required or encouraged of his followers: The following are a few examples from Baháʼu'lláh's teachings on personal conduct that are prohibited or discouraged.  Additionally, Baháʼís have self-organized in most of the nations of the world. Baháʼís observe 11 Holy Days throughout the year, with work suspended on 9 of these. ʻAbbás Effendi was Baháʼu'lláh's eldest son, known by the title of ʻAbdu'l-Bahá (Servant of Bahá). , The canonical texts of the Baháʼí Faith are the writings of the Báb, Baháʼu'lláh, ʻAbdu'l-Bahá, Shoghi Effendi and the Universal House of Justice, and the authenticated talks of ʻAbdu'l-Bahá.  In recent years, an Office of the Environment and an Office for the Advancement of Women were established as part of its United Nations Office.  Baháʼí writings refer to an institution called a "Mas͟hriqu'l-Ad͟hkár" (Dawning-place of the Mention of God), which is to form the center of a complex of institutions including a hospital, university, and so on. , The following principles are frequently listed as a quick summary of the Baháʼí teachings. The Station of Jesus Christ in the Baha’i Faith As the birth of The Baha'i Faith and Christianity: 16 Resources Featured on Baha'i Blog Unity of God; Unity of religion; and Unity of humanity. Shortly thereafter he was expelled from Iran and traveled to Baghdad, in the Ottoman Empire. 8.  Although parents should not choose partners for their children, once two individuals decide to marry, they must receive the consent of all living biological parents, whether they are Baháʼí or not. Quick Facts - A Journalist’s Guide to the Baha’i Faith. Prayer in the faith lies between obligatory prayer and devotional (general) prayer. Leyla Melikova (2013) "How Bahaʼism Travelled from the East to the West (Ideological Evolution of the Neo-Universalist Religious Doctrine). The Baha'i Faith: A Guide for the Perplexed. Because of this emphasis the international Baháʼí community has chosen to support efforts of improving international relations through organizations such as the League of Nations and the United Nations, with some reservations about the present structure and constitution of the UN. The year consists of 19 months, each having 19 days, with four or five intercalary days, to make a full solar year. " It was written to a follower of Sufism, in the style of ʻAttar, the Persian Muslim poet, and sets forth the stages of the soul's journey towards God. Religion 19: pp.  The Iranian government also accuses the Baháʼí Faith of being associated with Zionism. At the same time the Tribunal condemned "in most unequivocal and emphatic language the followers of Baha'u'llah as the believers in heresy, offensive and injurious to Islam, and wholly incompatible with the accepted doctrines and practice of its orthodox adherents. It grew out of the Shi'ite branch of the Muslim faith.  In Baghdad, his leadership revived the persecuted followers of the Báb in Iran, so Iranian authorities requested his removal, which instigated a summons to Constantinople (now Istanbul) from the Ottoman Sultan. , On the evening of 22 May 1844, Siyyid ʻAlí-Muhammad of Shiraz gained his first convert and took on the title of "the Báb" (الباب "the Gate"), referring to his later claim to the status of Mahdi of Shiʻa Islam. Baháʼí communities gather at the beginning of each month at a meeting called a Feast for worship, consultation and socializing. After receiving chastising letters from Baháʼu'lláh, Ottoman authorities turned against him and put him under house arrest in Adrianople (now Edirne), where he remained for four years, until a royal decree of 1868 banished all Bábís to either Cyprus or ʻAkká.  Most religious specialists now see it as an independent religion, with its religious background in Shiʻa Islam being seen as analogous to the Jewish context in which Christianity was established. In English, the word Baháʼí is used either as an adjective to refer to the Baháʼí Faith or as a term for a follower of Baháʼu'lláh. Bahá'í Faith promotes secular studies and promises doctrinal conformation with the discoveries of worldly authorities.  Baháʼí sources since 1991 usually estimate the worldwide Baháʼí population to be above 5 million. The symbols of the religion are derived from the Arabic word Baháʼ (بهاء "splendor" or "glory"), with a numerical value of 9, which is why the most common symbol is the nine-pointed star. They further state: "The Baha'i Faith is the only religion to have grown faster in every United Nations region over the past 100 years than the general population; Bahaʼi was thus the fastest-growing religion between 1910 and 2010, growing at least twice as fast as the population of almost every UN region. Baha’i Faith, religion founded in Iraq in the mid-19th century by Mirza Hosayn ‘Ali Nuri, who is known as Baha’ Allah. Sources summarize the Baháʼí Faith as teaching, "the essential worth of all religions, the unity of all peoples, and the equality of the sexes".  In March 2011 the sentences were reinstated to the original 20 years. According to Baháʼí belief when a human dies the soul is permanently separated from the body and carries on in the next world where it is judged based on the person's actions in the physical world. At this time Baháʼís view Baháʼu'lláh's revelation as a binding lesser covenant for his followers; in the Baháʼí writings being firm in the covenant is considered a virtue to work toward.  Baháʼís, however, assert that their religion is a distinct tradition with its own scriptures, teachings, laws, and history.  The Baháʼí teachings state that the unification of humanity is the paramount issue in the religious and political conditions of the present world. It was founded by the Bahaullah of Persia who was exiled by the Ottoman Empire for his teaching. , The Baháʼí Faith is currently the largest religious minority in Iran, Panama and Belize, the second largest international religion in Bolivia, Zambia, and Papua New Guinea; and the third largest international religion in Chad and Kenya.. Initiated in 1926 by Shoghi Effendi, Guardian of the Faith—and originally titled The Bahá’í Yearbook—The Bahá’í World volumes were published for eight decades as a “unique record of world-wide Bahá’í activity.” The volumes sought “to present to the general public…those historical facts and … , Baháʼí notions of progressive religious revelation result in their accepting the validity of the well known religions of the world, whose founders and central figures are seen as Manifestations of God.  Religious history is interpreted as a series of dispensations, where each manifestation brings a somewhat broader and more advanced revelation that is rendered as a text of scripture and passed on through history with greater or lesser reliability but at least true in substance, suited for the time and place in which it was expressed. Baháʼís should make a 19% voluntary payment on any wealth in excess of what is necessary to live comfortably, after the remittance of any outstanding debt. Schisms have occurred over the succession of authority, but any Baháʼí divisions have had relatively little success and have failed to attract a sizeable following, numbering only a few hundred collectively. The former consists of two five-pointed stars interspersed with a stylized Baháʼ whose shape is meant to recall the three onenesses, while the latter is a calligraphic rendering of the phrase Yá Baháʼu'l-Abhá (يا بهاء الأبهى "O Glory of the Most Glorious!"). Throughout the rest of his life Baháʼu'lláh gained the allegiance of most of the Bábís, who came to be known as Baháʼís. Baháʼu'lláh established the elected Universal House of Justice, and ʻAbdu'l-Bahá established the appointed hereditary Guardianship and clarified the relationship between the two institutions.  The House of the Báb in Shiraz, one of three sites to which Baháʼís perform pilgrimage, has been destroyed twice. 'Note on transliteration, dates and names', in Brookshaw & Fazel, eds. , With specific regard to the pursuit of world peace, Baháʼu'lláh prescribed a world-embracing collective security arrangement for the establishment of a temporary era of peace referred to in the Baha'i teachings as the Lesser Peace. At the heart of Baháʼí teachings is the goal of a unified world order that ensures the prosperity of all nations, races, creeds, and classes..  Under the leadership of his son, ʻAbdu'l-Bahá, the religion gained a footing in Europe and America, and was consolidated in Iran, where it still suffers intense persecution. Embalming or cremating the body is strongly discouraged. The star is often portrayed in … " This source's only systematic flaw was to consistently have a higher estimate of Christians than other cross-national data sets. Although the Baháʼí teachings have a strong emphasis on social and ethical issues, a number of foundational texts have been described as mystical. With Christmas just around the corner, we thought it could be useful to share some of the posts featured on Baha'i Blog so far, that relate to Christianity. There are specific requirements for Baháʼí burial that include a specified prayer to be read at the interment. , Since 1963, the Universal House of Justice has been the elected head of the Baháʼí Faith.  The ringstone symbol and calligraphy of the Greatest Name are also often encountered. According to The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2004: The majority of Baháʼís live in Asia (3.6 million), Africa (1.8 million), and Latin America (900,000). Bahá’í devotional gatherings, worship services, informational meetings, children’s classes, and celebrations are all open to the public.  The United Nations Commission on Human Rights revealed an October 2005 confidential letter from Command Headquarters of the Armed Forces of Iran ordering its members to identify Baháʼís and to monitor their activities. 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