[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]
[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets.]
[Personal information has been redacted.]
[The excerpt below is from the section of the article that pertains to the Baha’i Faith]
[Adapted from website:] Faran
[Date:] 25 Bahman 1399 [13 February 2021]
Baha’is in Iran - The Constitutional Revolution 1
The following article deals with the social context of the Constitutional Revolution. The Constitutional Revolution began under the leadership of the clergy, and with the support of the people, to remove the authority and overthrow the oppressive kings in the country. This movement had overshadowed all other social movements. For this reason, the Babi and Baha’i sects did not flourish like other movements. The Baha’is also influenced this great social movement in line with their goals and ideals.
Babis and Baha’is in the Garb of Intellectuals
Influential Babis and Baha’is in the Constitutional Revolution were in the second category, that is the intellectuals, and played an influential role in determining their line of thought. Among the Babis’ affiliated intellectuals are Mirza Aqa Khan Kermani (son-in-law of Sobh-e Azal, a Babi leader), Seyyed [sic] Ahmad Rouhi (son-in-law of Sobh-e Azal), Ebrahim Hakimi, Seyyed Jamal [al-Din] Va’iz, and Malik al-Mutekallimin.
At the time of the constitution, this group of intellectuals, without propagating Baha’ism, had anti-religious and anti-clerical views and worked for Western democracy. People like Aqa Khan Kermani, Malik al-Mutekallimin and others were active intellectuals who played the role of spreading atheistic ideas and liberal democracy. Babi intellectuals and their affiliates were active in the constitutional movement through semi-secret associations called national associations and newspapers.
One of the seemingly progressive movements that separated society and the next generation from religion was the creation of a new educational system independent of the clergy and religion. At that time, although the traditional educational system (maktabs [old-style schools]) did not meet the needs of the Iranian society, the establishment of new schools should not be in the direction of de-religionizing the thoughts of the youth of the society.
In the next articles, the connection between the idea of the constitutional movement, Babism and Baha’ism schools will be discussed.