[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]

 

[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

 

An Outlined Conversation

In Reference to Some Accusations, and Responses to Them

 

Topic One

Baha’is Are Not Atheists

An atheist is someone who does not believe in the existence of God, the prophets and the resurrection, while the Baha’is prove the existence of God. (1)

They believe in the righteousness of the prophets, the need for divine revelation and divine educators. (2)

They believe that the world of humanity is in need of the fragrance of the Holy Spirit. (3)

They believe in the life of the soul after death and retribution in the hereafter. (4)

They perform obligatory prayers, say [other] prayers, fast, go on pilgrimage, pay zakat [contributions] …and in short have a series of beliefs and acts of devotion. (5)

Therefore, Baha’is are not atheists.

[Notes for Topic One]

Reference to a summary of some of the sources

  1. Topic (B) Some Answered Questions, the Tablet to Dr. [Auguste] Forel, “Khatabat-i-Hadrat-i-Abdu’l-Baha
  2. Topics J, YD, FJ, LZ, LT, Some Answered Questions
  3. One of the twelve principles of Baha’u’llah
  4. Topics MH, S, SJ, SD, Some Answered Questions
  5. Kitab-i-Aqdas, Ganjineye Hodood va Ahkam …

 

Topic Two

Baha’is Are Not Pagans.

A pagan is one who does not believe in the oneness of God, while during their daily obligatory prayer, Baha’is say, “God testifieth that there is none other God but Him”[1] while standing, and say, “I bear witness to Thy unity and Thy oneness, and that Thou art God, and that there is none God beside Thee.”[2]

And they recite the same concept in different words in all their prayers. Sometimes they are accused of considering the Bab and Baha’u’llah to be God. How can it be such when the Bab says: [Persian verse](1)[3] and Baha’u’llah says, [Arabic verse][4], which means “Testify that there is no God but God, and this servant is His servant and His Glory.” He also says, “[Arabic verse]” (2)[5], meaning, “Some of you have said that He has a claim about Himself.” [Persian verse][6]. Moreover, He says, [Arabic verse] (3)[7], meaning “I swear to God that this word is not of me, but from the One who has been rightfully sent.” And according to the writings of Shoghi Effendi, a Baha’i who considers Baha’u’llah to be God is not in the right path. (4)

Therefore, Baha’is are not pagans.

[Notes for Topic Two]

  1. Part one of unit nine of the Persian Bayan
  2. Page 24, volume 4, Asar-e-Ghalam-e-Ala [The writings of Baha’u’llah]
  3. Page 324 Kitab-i-Badi
  4. Dispensation of Baha’u’llah compilation

And refer to the first and second pamphlets of “Study of the Baha’i Writings”

 

Topic Three

Baha’is Are Not Apostates And They Believe In Islam And The Quran.

An apostate is one who either was a Muslim himself, or his ancestors were Muslims, and has later stopped believing in Islam, while Baha’is do not consider anyone who does not believe in the righteousness of Islam to be a Baha’i. They recognize His Holiness Muhammad, consider the Quran to be the word of God, glorify the pure Imams and cite the Quran and traditions to prove the legitimacy of the specific belief of the Baha’is. (1)

Therefore, Baha’is are not apostates.

[Notes for Topic Three]

  1. For information on details of the subject, refer to the pamphlet, “Islam in the Eyes of the Baha’is”, the statements of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of Iran, principle beliefs of the people of Baha, the article “Religion is Truth and Truth Does Not Accept plurality.”

 

Topic Four

Baha’is Are Not Spies of Imperialism.

Espionage for imperialism requires one to interfere in political affairs; while Baha’is are explicitly prohibited by their leaders from interfering in politics. Abdu’l-Baha says, [Persian verse] (1)[8] and “Those who violate this inscrutable decree will be expelled from the Baha’i community.”

At some point, this group was slandered [by those who said] that it was created in accordance with the imperialist policy of Tsarist Russia and the action of Kenyaz Dolgorouki, and some notes have been attributed to this individual to enhance the narrative of this connection. Fair-minded scholars and Muslim scholastic historians, such as the late Abbas Eqbal and the late Mojtaba Minovi, testified in the country’s press that these notes were fabricated (2); thus it was proven that this [allegation] is an absolute slander. However, the extent of oppression reached a level where they portrayed the meeting of Baha’u’llah with His brother-in-law, who was a secretary at the Russian Embassy, as taking refuge.

At some point, they said Baha’is were connected to British politics, and they cited Abdu’l-Baha’s prayer for [King] George V and that government’s awarding Him a medal, while Abdu’l-Baha always prayed for all the people, from the masses to specific individuals, including the rulers of the world in His time. He prayed for Mozaffar ad-Din Shah, during whose reign the Baha’is of Iran were horrifically massacred, and for Sultan Abdul-Hamid Khan, the Ottoman Caliph who had imprisoned Him in a fort. The reason is that the sign of God’s mercy offers His prayers to God for all humanity. And Abdu’l Baha was awarded a medal by the representative of the British government because of His usual charitable affairs during the First World War’s years of hunger, famine and poverty. (1)

Baha’is are now said to have ties with the State of Israel. However, the Baha’is are attracted only to the Holy Shrines of Baha’u’llah, the Bab and Abdu’l-Baha in the two cities of Akka and Haifa, and they buried Their blessed bodies in these two cities as a result of force and compulsion due to the Iranian government’s order to exile Baha’u’llah to the Ottoman Empire; it was not in the hands of Baha’is. This exile was carried out 112 years ago (1). And finally, they consider the Baha’i to be spies for the United States of America, while they have no reason, evidence or presumption to support such slander. Naturally, when such a significant crime is attributed to a group, the claimant has the responsibility to prove it (2), and if he fails to prove it, he is a slanderer. However, it is strange that they consider the oppression against the Baha’is to be so easy that they allow themselves to demand that the Baha’is prove their innocence against the slanders that they themselves have made with no reason.

But what is the main reason for this attempt to slander Baha’is in connection to politics, and particularly different kinds of politics? The reason is that, despite obstacles such as murder, imprisonment, persecution, exile, threats, looting and captivity, and in the absence of exigencies such as military and economic means, the Baha’i Faith has continued to be protected, has progressed and has become global. According to the statistics [published] in the spring of 1358 [March/May 1979], [the Baha’i Faith] has been established and formed its institutions in 96,000 localities and 130 countries in the world. And since they do not want to admit that the cause of this is the Will of God and the legitimacy of the Baha’i Faith, and they do not see any external causes either, they inevitably consider the reason to be politics―any political force that is powerful, dominant or prevalent at the time. And since they cannot prove this with any reason, fair-minded people should then admit that Baha’is are not spies of imperialism.

[Notes for Topic Four, page 5]

  1. Reference is made to Makatib Abdu’l-Baha
  2. These statements are included in the introduction to a pamphlet published by the National Spiritual Assembly in response to these fabricated notes.

[Note for Topic Four, page 6]

  1. Reference is made to the pamphlet “History Complains” and the recent publication of the Spiritual Assembly of Tehran

[Notes for Topic Four, page 7]

  1. Reference is made to “A Corner of History” and “The Government of Iran Had Wanted This”
  2. “Proof is on the claimant”, which is one of the main rules of Islamic jurisprudence and among credible traditions.

 

Topic Five

Baha’is Are Not Unpatriotic or Disloyal to Their Homeland.

Abdu’l-Baha says, [Persian verse] (1)[9]

Shoghi Effendi says, [Persian verse] (2)[10]

Perhaps the reason for this slander is the belief of the Baha’is in the “oneness of mankind”, while this belief is one of the major and fundamental requirements of all religions in all ages.

And if Baha’u’llah has said, “It is not for him to pride himself who loveth his own country, but rather for him who loveth the whole world,” in reality He has not considered patriotism a reason for people to be proud, because it is a necessary matter and a definite duty. It is as if someone is asked to take pride in loving other people’s children; there is no pride in loving one’s own children which is a necessity and a natural requirement. In this regard, Shoghi Effendi says, [Persian verse][11]….

Whatever the rulers and authorities decide for the beloved homeland, and whatever decree they issue or law that they enact, the Baha’is immediately obey with utmost sincerity, enthusiasm, benevolence, honesty and fidelity, inwardly in action, and in words, under all conditions and in all circumstances (1). but particularly in the case of Iran, Baha’is worship this pure land because it is the cradle of the Baha’i Faith, where thousands of noble martyrs have been killed, where the Bab was martyred and Baha’u’llah was born, where they rush for pilgrimage, to sanctify and glorify [themselves], and they have many writings in this regard. (2)

Therefore, Baha’is are not unpatriotic or disloyal to their homeland.

[Notes for Topic Five, page 9]

  1. Amr va Khalq, volume 3, page 286
  2. Letter [of Shoghi Effendi] dated 19 December 1923, page 166 and 167, volume 1, Towghiat-i-Mobarakeh

[Notes for Topic Five, page 10]

  1. Letter [of Shoghi Effendi] dated 8 June 1925, Akhbar-e Amri [Baha’i News] year 1357 [1978], page 301
  2. Reference is made to the pamphlet “Iran in the Eyes of the Baha’is” and “The Sacred Country of Iran”

 

Topic Six

Baha’is Are Not Elements of Zionism.

Zionism is a political movement with focus on a specific ethnicity. Baha’is refrain from interfering in political affairs (1) and must also renounce racial prejudice (2). Moreover, this is a claim the proof of which is on the claimant; otherwise it is slander.

Therefore, Baha’is are not elements of Zionism.

[Notes for Topic Six]

  1. Reference is made to the previous topic, as well as numerous pamphlets and tapes on this subject.
  2. Elimination of racial prejudices is among the twelve principles of Baha’u’llah

 

Topic Seven

Baha’is Are Not the Cause of Division of Iran or Islam.

One of the most important principles of the Baha’i Faith is the “oneness of the foundation of all religions” (1) as well as the “oneness of mankind”. Therefore, how can a group that considers the foundation of all religions as one and calls humanity to unity be a cause of division, unless they assume “addition” and “subtraction” have the same meaning and are forced to accept the gathering of opposites. Baha’is have the duty to consort with [people of] all religions with amity and concord, and based on the guidance of Abdu’l-Baha, they prefer the absence of religion, if it causes discord (3).

Therefore, Baha’i are not the cause of division.

[Notes for Topic Seven]

  1. Reference is made to the article “Religion is Truth and Truth Does Not Accept Plurality.”
  2. The verse from the Kitab-i-Aqdas “Consort with all religions with amity and concord”
  3. Reference is made to “Khatabat-i-Hadrat-i-Abdu’l-Baha” and “Payam-e-Malakout”

 

Topic Eight

Charges Against Individuals Cannot Be Linked to the Baha’i Community, its Institutions or the Religion.

Reports of economic sabotage or disruption of the country’s economy, in the case of one or two individuals associated with the Baha’i community, have been heard from some officials and published in some newspapers. The actions of individuals cannot be attributed to their religious beliefs or to the social institution of the followers of that religion, and one cannot blame all members of that religion as such. In God’s words, “No soul burdened with sin will bear the burden of another.”[12] and to the contents of the word which is an ultimatum for Muslims, “If we make a mistake, it is our fault, not that of Islam.” For this reason, when one or two individuals in a community made up of hundreds of thousands of people in this country and whose religion is the largest religious minority in the country, take wrong actions in economic affairs, and this charge is proven based on the government’s judgment, this is only related to the same one or two individuals, and in the eyes of justice, the Baha’i community, its institutions or the Baha’i Faith cannot be held responsible for such matters.

This is specifically for the Baha’i Community

 

 

[1] https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/bahaullah/kitab-i-aqdas/8#011943545

[2] https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/bahaullah/kitab-i-aqdas/8#195866794

[3] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"نقطه بیان عبدی بوده مرزوق و مخلوق و مولود و موروث. و انچه من‌الله تکلم نموده از اوست نه از او. که کسی غلوّ ننماید و از حدّ عبودیت تجاوز نکند"

[4] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"فاشهد بانه لا اله الا هو هذا الغلام عبده و بهاؤه"

[5] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"و منکم من قال ان هذا هو الذی ادعی فی نفسه ما ادّعی فوالله هذالبهتان عظیم و ما انا الا عبد آمنت بالله و آیاته و رسله و ملئکته"

[6] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"سوگند به خدای باد که این بهتان بزرگی است و من جز بنده‌ای نیستم که به خدا و آیات او و پیمبران و فرشتگان او ایمان دارم."

[7] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"فوالله هذا لم یکن من عندی بل من لدن من ارسلنی بالحق"  

[8] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"نفسی از احبا اگر بخواهد در امور سیاسیّه در منزل خویش یا محفل دیگران مذاکره‌ای بکند اول بهتر است که نسبت خود را از این امر قطع نماید و جمیع بدانند که تعلق به این امر ندارد "

[9] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"فوالله هذا لم یکن من عندی بل من لدن من ارسلنی بالحق هر ذلتی را تحمل توان نمود مگر خیانت به وطن، هر گناهی قابل عفو و مغفرت است مگر هتک ناموس دولت و مضرت ملت".

[10] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"مگذارید گمان کنند که بهائیان تعلق به وطن خویش ندارند بلکه به راستی بدانند و یقین نمایند که از همه بیشتر و از همه ثابت‌ترند."

[11] [The authorized translation of this text is not available in English. The original text is as follows:]

"اهل بهاء هر چند به محبت و خدمت به نوع بشر معروف و مشتهر و مفتخرند و در بذل همت در ترویج مصالح عمومیه نوع انسان مشاربالبنان ولی به اوطان خویش نیز تعلقی و تمسکی شدید دارند"...

[12] [Quran 35:18] https://quran.com/35