Messages to the Bahá'í World: 1950-1957
Mysterious dispensations of ever-watchful Providence, hastening,
through turmoil and trial, the triumph of His undefeatable
Faith, dictating at this critical hour the sudden deterioration of the
situation confronting the largest community of the Bahá'í world,
as evidenced by the violent recrudescence of the persecution afflicting
intermittently, for over a century, its members residing in
Bahá'u'lláh's native land.
Following the seizure and the destruction of the dome of the
community's national administrative headquarters, the occupation
of similar institutions in all provinces, the government declaration
to the Majlis outlawing the Faith and a virulent press and radio
campaign, distorting its history, calumniating its Founders, misrepresenting
its tenets and obscuring its aims and purposes, a series
of atrocities has been perpetrated in rapid succession throughout the
length and breadth of the land against members of a sorely-tried
The House of the Báb, the foremost Shrine in Írán, has been
twice desecrated and severely damaged; Bahá'u'lláh's ancestral
Home at Takur occupied; the house of the Báb's uncle razed to the
ground; shops, farms plundered; crops burned, livestock destroyed;
bodies disinterred in the cemeteries and mutilated; private houses
broken into, damaged and looted; adults execrated and beaten;
young women abducted and forced to marry Muslims; children
mocked, reviled, beaten and expelled from the schools; boycott by
butchers and bakers imposed; fifteen-year-old girl raped; eleven-month-old
baby trampled underfoot; and pressure brought to bear
upon believers to recant their Faith.
More recently a family of seven, the oldest eighty, the youngest
nineteen, residing in Hurmuzak of the Province of Yazd, were
set upon by a mob two thousand strong, accompanied by music of
drums and trumpets, which hacked them to pieces with spades and
axes. Meanwhile an official circular has been issued by the Prime
Minister, addressed to Government Departments ordering the expulsion
of all Bahá'í employes refusing to recant.
This highly distressing situation threatens to worsen during
Muharram and Safar.
Reacting to these barbarous acts, over a thousand groups and
local Assemblies of the Bahá'í world appealed telegraphically to the
authorities, and all National Assemblies addressed written communications
to the Sháh, the government and parliament, pleading
for justice and protection.
Finding written pleas unanswered, an appeal has been lodged
with United Nations by representatives of the International Bahá'í
Community at Geneva. Copies of the appeal were delivered to representatives
of member nations of the Social and Economic Council,
the Director of the Human Rights Division and certain specialized
agencies of nongovernmental organizations with consultative
status. Furthermore, President Eisenhower who, according to
the newspapers, first mentioned the persecutions at a Press Conference
in Washington, has been appealed to by the National representatives
of the American Bahá'í Community and all Assemblies
and groups in the United States to intervene on behalf of their
oppressed sister community.
Whatever the outcome of the present heart-rending events, one
fact emerges clear and indisputable. God's infant Faith, provided,
through the operation of a quarter-century-long process associated
with the first epoch of the formative age of the Faith, with the
machinery of a divinely appointed Administrative Order, and utilizing
in the course of the succeeding epoch, through the formulation
of a series of national plans, culminating in the launching of the
World Crusade, the newly-born administrative agencies for the
systematic propagation of the Faith, is now gradually emerging from
obscurity in the wake of the ordeal convulsing the overwhelming
majority of the followers of the Faith.
The world-wide reverberations of this nation-wide commotion
will be hailed by posterity as the mighty blast of God's trumpet
designed to awaken, through the instrumentality of its oldest, most
redoubtable, most vicious, most fanatical adversaries, countless multitudes,
and the Chancelleries and Chief Magistrates of the East
and of the West, to the existence and implications of the Faith proclaimed
by His Messenger in this Day. This long-desired, ardently-hoped-for
emergence, itself a long-drawn-out process, is bound to
pave the way for the emancipation of this same Faith from the
fetters of orthodoxy in Islamic countries, as well as the ultimate
recognition of the independent character of the Revelation of
Bahá'u'lláh in His homeland.
Owing to the grievous losses sustained, and the necessity to
demonstrate world-wide Bahá'í solidarity, an "Aid the Persecuted"
Fund has been inaugurated for the purpose of bringing immediate
relief to the despoiled and homeless victims. Myself contributing
the equivalent of eighteen thousand dollars for this noble purpose.
However conscious I am of the manifold demands on the adherents
of the Faith, I am impelled to invite them to participate through
contributions to be transmitted through their respective National
Moreover, undeterred by the obstacles placed in the path of the
crusaders of Bahá'u'lláh, the historic decision has been arrived at
to raise the Mother Temple of Africa in the City of Kampala,
situated in its heart and constituting a supreme consolation to the
masses of oppressed valiant brethren in the Cradle of the Faith.
Every continent of the globe except Australasia will thereby pride
itself on and derive direct spiritual benefits from its own Mashriqu'l-Adhkár.
Befitting recognition will, moreover, have been accorded
the marvelous expansion of the Faith and the amazing multiplications
of its administrative institutions throughout this continent, a
continent fully deserving of a House of Worship, complementing
the four national Hazíratu'l-Quds already established, wherein the
spirit of an unconquerable Faith can dwell, within whose walls the
African adherents of the Faith of Bahá'u'lláh can congregate, and
from which anthems of praise glorifying the Most Great Name can
ascend to the Concourse of the Abhá Kingdom.
Transmit message to Hands of the Cause and National Assemblies.
[Cablegram, August 23, 1955]