Mulla Husayn: A Book for Young Children by Alhan Rahimi

Alhan Rahimi is a lovely young mother who saw a need and filled it. She has recently written a book called Mulla Husayn: The Story of the Declaration of the Bab for Young Children. The colorful book includes soft illustrations and thoughtful text. I found myself sitting next to Alhan at this year’s ABS conference and it was wonderful to meet her. Here is what she shared about her book:

Baha’i Blog: Can you tell us a little about yourself?

My name is Alhan Rahimi. I’m a Baha’i mother of two young girls (ages three and one). I also work as a medical Arabic interpreter and live in Ontario, Canada.

Baha’i Blog: What inspired you to write this book?

My children were my inspiration. I wanted my 3-year-old to have a better understanding of the Declaration of the Bab celebration. I actually want them both to have a good understanding of all the Baha’i Holy Days!

Continue reading

Coronation on Carmel by Michael V. Day: The Second Book in a Trilogy About the Shrine of the Bab

Coronation on Carmel by Michael V. Day is the second book in a trilogy that tells the story of the Shrine of the Bab, the resting place of the Bab, a Messenger of God whose revitalizing message prepared the way for the coming of Baha’u’llah, the Founder of the Baha’i Faith.

Michael’s skills and talents as a journalist and his deep love for Baha’i history make for an exciting read. I was delighted to hear from Michael about his book, the process of putting it together, and its uniqueness in the trilogy. Here’s what Michael shared with me:

Baha’i Blog: So good to talk to you about this second book in the trilogy, Michael! Can you tell us a little bit about the book?

Coronation on Carmel is the second book in the trilogy I wrote to tell the story of the Shrine of the Bab. It starts just after where Journey to a Mountain finished. It covers the period 1922 to 1963, the time when Shoghi Effendi took on and fulfilled the responsibility given to him by the Abdu’l-Baha to complete the Shrine of the Bab.
The book traces the drama from start to finish. First, it lists the problems in the early years and then shows how by drawing on spiritual resources and through careful planning and attention to practicalities, Shoghi Effendi engaged the brilliant architect, William Sutherland Maxwell, motivated the Baha’is to donate the funds, and with an acute sense of timing, achieved his goal.

The book details the design of the arcade and superstructure, and how it was built. There are lots of descriptions of events in and near the Shrine.

The story is set against the background of the economic depression, communal conflict in the Holy Land, the anxious times of World War 2, and the establishment of the State of Israel.

Continue reading

62 Baha’i Blog Posts and Resources Relating to the Bab

As the bicentenary of the Birth of the Bab approaches, we thought it might be helpful to gather all the posts we’ve published over the years relating to the Bab, the Prophet-herald of the Baha’i Faith.

The list below is not in any particular order and there may be some we’ve missed, but among the Baha’i Blog posts listed below, you’ll find contemplative articles, news items, tributes, Baha’i Blog Studio Sessions, talks, videos and image galleries relating to the Bab, His Mission, and His early followers. We hope you find this consolidated list helpful, especially in the coming days. Continue reading

Message from the Universal House of Justice Marking the Bicentenary of the Birth of the Bab

The Universal House of Justice has just released a message marking the occasion of the bicentenary of the Birth of the Bab, Prophet-herald of the Baha’i Faith.

The letter can be found on the Baha’i International Community’s website dedicated to the bicentenary of the Birth of the Bab and is available in several languages: bicentenary.bahai.org

Here is the message from the Universal House of Justice in English: Message from the Universal House of Justice Marking the Bicentenary of the Birth of the Bab Continue reading

With Oars and Compass – A Novel by Hamed Javaheri About Life’s Purpose

With Oars and Compass is a book I wish I had read many years ago. Written by Hamed Javaheri, it frames an exploration of the meaning and purpose of life in a narrative that is philosophical, romantic, and mysterious. We meet Jane Luwi Flynn and get to eavesdrop on the meaningful conversations she has with her friends, her growing friendship and attraction to Xavier, and her recurring dreams. The story pulls the reader along and the conversations among its characters make you pause and think. Compelling, informative, engaging, light-hearted, humorous and thought-provoking, With Oars and Compass would have been a book that I read cover to cover as a teenager and young adult when I was asking myself the same questions Jane asks. But really, it’s a novel for anyone and anytime.

Hamed graciously agreed to share what inspired him to write the novel. Here is our conversation:

Baha’i Blog: Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I was born and raised in Zambia, Southern Africa, and have lived here for most of my life, with the exception of a brief period in Montreal, Canada, where I pursued my university education. My wife and I married when we were young, and we have three children—the first of which is about to venture off for his year of service before he enters university.

As a Baha’i, I am privileged to witness the impact of the Teachings on the human mind—and on youth in particular—as they come to recognize the potential they have to contribute to the wellbeing of their communities, and to the betterment of the world.

Continue reading

Mulla Husayn: The Unlikely Hero Who Advanced the Cause of Truth

Pictured above is the Vakil Mosque in Shiraz, Iran, where Mulla Husayn preached and taught theology classes during his time in Shiraz. [Photo: Faruk Kaymak]

You are destined to exhibit such courage, such skill and heroism as shall eclipse the mightiest deeds of the heroes of old. Your daring exploits will win the praise and admiration of the dwellers in the eternal Kingdom. – The Bab to Mulla Husayn in Mahku before His transference to Chihriq

He was frail of form and slender with a fragile frame. 

He appeared before the great clerics and the learned of his time “an insignificant and negligible figure.”

His hand trembled and shook as he wrote.

His childhood friend declared him as one not in possession of strength or bodily endurance.

Contemporary reports indicate he had been sickly as a child and suffered from epilepsy and heart palpitations.

And yet.  Continue reading

5 Panels for the Bicentenary Created by the Baha’is of the UK

The Baha’is of the United Kingdom have created five beautiful exhibition panels designed for use during activities commemorating the bicentenary of the Birth of the Bab, Prophet-Herald of the Baha’i Faith.

The panels offer a historical overview of the Bab’s Revelation, share quotations about His Station, describe His teachings, and offer from excerpts from His Writings. Eye-catching photographs are also included. Continue reading

6 Ways My Home Community Plans on Celebrating the Bicentenary

Photo courtesy of Elliott Vreeland

Over 20 years ago, my family left metropolitan life and moved to the Australian regional centre of Ballarat. Located an easy 90-minute drive west of Melbourne, the city is renowned in Australia and abroad for its goldrush history. However, I like to think of its claim-to-fame as being the fact that Australia’s first ever Baha’i woman Effie Baker was raised there, and it was in Ballarat where she received the knowledge and training that would ultimately lead to her serving the Faith as one of its most notable photographers.

With a population of about 100,000, Ballarat is certainly rich in culture, history and heritage. But the reason I love my hometown most of all is because of the strong sense of love, unity and devotion which underpins the Baha’i community. While relatively small (we have less than 30 adult believers and about 15 children and junior youth), we have always managed to work within our means to serve the Faith in a spirit of utmost humility, forging a pattern of collective life that is warm, inclusive and ever-advancing.  Continue reading