Abdu’l-Baha was the eldest son of Baha’u’llah. When Abdu’l-Baha passed away on 28 November 1921, He was eulogized as One who led humanity to the “Way of Truth,” as a “pillar of peace” and the embodiment of “glory and greatness.”
Baha’is see the young as the most precious treasure a community can possess. In them are the promise and guarantee of the future. Yet, in order for this promise to be realised, children need to receive spiritual nourishment, such as can be found in the children’s classes happening all around the world.
Born in Shiraz, Iran on 20 October 1819, Siyyid Ali-Muhammad would become known to the world as the Bab (meaning “the Gate” in Arabic). The Bab was the symbolic gate; it was His mission to herald the coming of this promised Manifestation of God whom we know to be Baha’u’llah. In the Baha’i calendar, the Birth of the Bab and the Birth of Baha’u’llah are celebrated one after the other in one festival referred to as the “Twin Holy Days”.
The Moon Was There: Glimpses of the Bab’s Childhood for Young Children
Baha’i Blog: What inspired you to make the moon your main character?
Not being able to have any illustrations of the Manifestation of God was the main reason for thinking of a some other way to illustrate the story. And why the moon? Well, I think it’s special that the moon, which can be seen from everywhere on this planet, is the same moon that witnessed the Bab’s childhood!
Baha’i Blog: Who is the book’s target audience?
Children under the age of 5. However, anyone can enjoy reading it!
Baha’i Blog: What did your children think when you were putting this together? What do they think about the book?
When I showed them the E-version of the book, my eldest asked me when the paperback would arrive! She paid good attention to the story. My one-year-old loved the illustrations.
Baha’i Blog: How has celebrating the bicentenary of the Birth of the Bab inspired you?
I was not sure if I would be able to write and publish any book for this occasion on time. But the thought that this is a one-time opportunity and that not every year is a bicentenary, was a big motivation to get the work done – just in time!
Baha’i Blog: What’s something that you learned while writing this book?
To me, the best part of writing a book is the research. Even though it’s a children’s book, I still wanted to go through as many references as possible to decide which information I’d include in this short book. Therefore, I personally learned more about the Bab’s childhood than I knew before.
Baha’i Blog: Could you please tell us a little about the illustrations and the illustrator for this book?
The illustrator of this book is Anahit Aleksanyan from Armenia. We’ve been working together since 2016 and this is the 3rd book that she illustrated for me. She is amazingly talented and always brings my ideas to visualization.
Baha’i Blog: Thank you so much, Alhan. You can purchase ‘The Moon was There: Glimpses of the Bab’s Childhood for Young Children’ here on Amazon. You can also find out more about Alhan’s projects on her Facebook page or by visiting her website www.alhanrahimi.com.
In her innermost heart, Sonjel is a stay-at-home parent and a bookworm with a maxed out library card but professionally she is a museologist with a background in English Literature. She currently lives on Prince Edward Island, an isle in the shape of a smile on the eastern Canadian coast. Sonjel is a writer who loves to listen to jazz when she's driving at night.