[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]

 

[Newspaper:] Toloo

[Date:] 17 Ordibehesht 1337 [7 May 1958]

[Issue No.:] 1788

 

What Do Baha’is Do in Haifa and Other Parts of the World?

On the high mountain of Carmel, the City of Haifa has a beautiful view over a long and wide margin, two levels with two roads on the foothills of these heights. With the passing of time, over almost a century, a limited number of Iranians, called Baha’is, have created a centre for themselves, which, regardless of the manner and ideology that they follow, is significant to the aspect of Iranianism.

If a person goes back centuries and long periods in history, to the time before the appearance of Islam and to the first century of the Christian era, he sees that, from the Iranians, a clever, smart, intelligent and shrewd shopkeeper is found, who, according to the exigencies of the time and the situation of the events, gathers around himself groups of different nations and sects, some of whom, in the history of Islam, were sources and initiators of the most formidable and most dreadful revolutions, and some of whom, around the area of the eastern Mediterranean, were operators of different scenes, events and occurrences.

The source and initiator of Ismailism and Qarmatianism, and lately the terrorist government of Hassan-e Sabbah and all those revolutions, events and occurrences, was Iran and the territory of Iran. In the second part of the nineteenth century, the subject of Babism and Baha’ism [arose], and those who have studied more or less have knowledge that it was from Iran.

One of the vast areas of Ismaili activity was the north of Africa and the vast jurisdiction of the eastern Mediterranean from Palestine, Syria, ash-Sham and the mountains of Lebanon to the fortresses of Alamut and Quhistan in Iran.  We still see Baha’is in this jurisdiction―not that there are too many. No, it is not like this; there are few. But as few as they are, there are many operators in different regions such as Asia, Africa, America and Europe. The majority of the preachers and skillful players of this scene are Iranians, who, with cleverness and ingenuity, travel around the world and are active. 

Besides their religion and beliefs, which attract attention, it is sure and certain that wherever they are their activities are related to Iran and Iranians. Also, the garden where Baha’u’llah and Abdu’l-Baha are buried, and the big new edifice which they are building on top of this section, are not in the name of the Baha’is, but rather in the name of Iran, and [that area is] known as the Garden of Iran. People, either local or foreign, who travel in Haifa, call it the Street of the Garden of Iran and the Garden of Iran. The gardeners were generations of fathers and sons, and the majority were Yazdis, who are famous for being assiduous and having good taste. And whatever has been created in the middle of the mountain―meaning in the rocky mountain and calcareous rocks―displays in front of the eyes Iranian style and taste.

After the passing of Shoghi Effendi, no special person has taken his place, but a council consisting of nine will be elected and the large, new building that is under construction will be the seat of this council. A museum will also be built at great expense.

Briefly, this group of Iranians has given their activities an international feature. In other words, their goal is not limited to the subject of the promised Mahdi and these kinds of subjects. Instead, based on the fact that every belief and religion must be able to sustain permanence as much as possible with the growth and understanding of the human brain, they extract from the writings instructions and principles agreeable to the world and teach them, and move forward with time.

In the short notes I have written about this tribe, my intention was in no way to find the essence of the beliefs and manners of this sect. Most of the time, in this sort of discussion, a person cannot be influenced by his personal beliefs, or at least [must] be impartial, and if his fanaticism comes [into it], very little from the truth can be understood; in fact, in every situation, finding the truth has to be the intention.