The story of the martyrdom of the Bàb

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moyo
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The story of the martyrdom of the Bàb

Postby moyo » Tue Sep 13, 2005 7:08 am

:?: I have a question in my head from the readings on this site.

In the pilgrims note "The Light of the World, by George Orr Latimer" p.69 "the war", it is written :

Mr. Latimer: "Was the Bábí, Aga Muhammad-‘Alí, who was martyred with the Báb, killed with the first volley or the second?"

Abdu'l-Bahá: "With the first one he was killed. He was mutilated. But the body of His Holiness the Báb was not hit by the first discharge."

But the story of the martyrdom of the Bàb by Shoggi Effendi is quite different from this statement in God passes by chapter 4, p. 52-53 :

"Sám Khán accordingly set out to discharge his duty. A spike was driven into a pillar which separated two rooms of the barracks facing the square. Two ropes were fastened to it from which the Báb and one of his disciples, the youthful and devout Mírzá Muhammad-`Alí-i-Zunúzí, surnamed Anís, who had previously flung himself at the feet of his Master and implored that under no circumstances he be sent away from Him, were separately suspended. The firing squad ranged itself in three files, each of two hundred and fifty men. Each file in turn opened fire until the whole detachment had discharged its bullets. So dense was the smoke from the seven hundred and fifty rifles that the sky was darkened.As soon as the smoke had cleared away the astounded multitude of about ten thousand souls, who had crowded onto the roof of the barracks, as well as the tops of the adjoining houses, beheld a scene which their eyes could scarcely believe.

The Báb had vanished from their sight! Only his companion remained, alive and unscathed, standing beside the wall on which they had been suspended. The ropes by which they had been hung alone were severed.

Can someone explain where is the solution :idea:

Thank you.

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Tue Sep 13, 2005 1:40 pm

Dear Moyo,

Thank you for finding this and pointing it out.

I think there are two possible ways this can be reconciled.

One way would simply be that the pilgrim's note is inaccurate. As Bahá'ís, according to the explicit written instructions of 'Abdu'l-Bahá Himself, we are not to rely on pilgrim's notes.

The second possibility is that the account Shoghi Effendi gave in God Passes was simply based on the best historical information available (elsewhere). See also http://bahai-library.com/?file=uhj_infa ... y_guardian and http://bahai-library.com/?file=uhj_bible_errors_gpb . Thus the account in God Passes By might not be fully accurate. Without further investigation, I would probably lean more to the latter, given especially the former being only a pilgrim's note.

best wishes,
Brett

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The Guardian is correct

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Thu Sep 15, 2005 1:29 pm

Brett,

You are absolutely correct that pilgrims notes can be inaccurate. But the Guardian could not have been wrong. There is absolutely no question about that. Why? As you probably know, God passed on the Covenant to Baha'u'llah; He passed the Covenant on to His Son; 'Abdu'l-Baha passed it on to the Guardian; and now the Covenant is with the Universal House of Justice. Therefore, it is 100% impossible that the Guardian would have to rely on historical facts in this case. He was infallible in that sense because the Covenant was working through Him. The Guardian would most certainly never contradict 'Abdu'l-Baha.

There are two types of contradictions that exist. Apparent contradictions, and actual contradictions. Apparent contradictions do exist in the Writings but can be resolved. There are absolutely no actual contradictions, however!

As for the quote of 'Abdu'l-Baha, did you get it from pilgrims notes, and where? Because there is no way the Master would have said that, and we have many historical accounts of the bystanders that reported the Bab's disappearance, and they all report that the youth was still alive.

Also, if you just think logically, how could the youth have died first? This is impossible...the bodies were fused together by all the bullets. Had the youth died first, his remains would not have been fused with the Bab's remains.

Again, not only does the Guardian say this but so do other historical accounts.

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:22 pm

If you would read the sources I provided, I believe you will see that the Guardian could in fact err (though he was very thorough) in historical matters. This is not the same as infallibility in doctrinal matters.

As far as the source of the pilgrim's note of 'Abdu'l-Bahá (which Moyo provided), it is available at http://bahai-library.com/?file=latimer_ ... rld#thewar . As it was a pilgrim's note (not to mention the potential for error in historical matters), that 'Abdu'l-Bahá was to have made the statement should not make a difference.

Brett

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A

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Thu Sep 15, 2005 6:06 pm

I did read those sources. Thank you for the advice. However, if you want to re-read the source "Biblical discrepancies in God Passes By" yourself, you will note that the issue is over publication errors, not factual errors. The Guardian, in other words, did not say something that was historically incorrect. The other issue presented is sentence ambiguity—again, these are publication errors. And even—I say even—if Shoghi Effendi supposedly reported an incorrect date or whatever, that would most certainly be a publication error, not really an error due to His lack of understanding.

Also if you kindly re-read "Infallibility and Historical Knowledge of the Guardian," you should notice that

"The infallibility of the Guardian is confined to matters which are related strictly to the Cause"...

...Elsewhere..."he is infallible in the protection of the Faith."

Is the martyrdom something "confined to matters which are related strictly to the Cause"? Yes, in fact it is. It is historical, yes, but it is important Baha'i history. Therefore, if Shoghi Effendi said that the Bab and the youth died together, the second time, then they did. If you are a Baha'i, then you must accept this fact. There is no way around it.

Also, the argument I gave (though I did not need to give it) about the bodies being fused together after being riddled with bullets was very logical, and you did not respond to it I see.


—Warrior

PS—As to quote by the UHJ:

"Now, in the matter of the accuracy of historical fact, Shoghi Effendi had to rely on available information."

So, like the example given, 'Abdu'l-Baha indicated Himself that He based His recording of those events on news received from Yazd. Notice the Master made sure to explicitly state that the information He provided was received from Yazd. And there is no doubt in my mind that the Master knew the information was actually inaccurate.

Also, Shoghi Effendi was "meticulous about the authenticity of historical fact." That combined with the quotes I mentioned above prove that Shoghi Effendi was correct. In fact, it is the Baha'i position that the Bab and the youth died at the same time, and therefore it is not disputable. This is not just any ordinary historical fact, this was a very important event that occured in the Baha'i dispensation.

Not important in the sense that we should be overly concerned about what actually happened, because we know it was a miracle and faith should not be based on miracles. But, the account the Guardian gives of that day is the way it happened, absolutely.

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Thu Sep 15, 2005 9:55 pm

Although I think you are correct (for a different reason stated below), I suggest being very careful about stating with such certainty what the Bahá'í position is on something (speaking from my own experience as well as the Writings).

To try to state that some fact about Hájí Mírzá Áqásí's character was not related to the Cause while the details of the Báb's Martyrdom was, is a fine line I for one do not feel qualified to ascertain with certainty.

The former situation (describing Hájí Mírzá Áqásí) seems from the context of the letter cited to be admitted to be an error--and not one where Shoghi Effendi explicitly stated anything about the fact being conditioned on some source or another--the Writings are not written like academic papers with every source being explicitly cited. Such an error (if it is one, as the context seems very much to suggest) does not undermine the Guardian's essential infallibility.

As to your logical argument, it is fine assuming that the sources for the bodies being entwined together are themselves all reliable, independent, and supplementary to the already existing sources (Does anyone know about Anís' burial?).

However, there is one textual argument which should clear this up. 'Abdu'l-Bahá, in authorized text, Himself referred to Anís being saved from the first volley:

"From the fire of these volleys a mighty smoke was produced. When the smoke cleared away they saw that young man standing and the Báb seated by the side of His amanuensis Áqá Siyyid Husayn in the very cell from the staircase of which they had suspended them."

(A Traveller's Narrative, p. 27)


Ironically, the same pilgrim's note above referred us to this above (refuting) account:

Pilgrim's note:
Then Mr. Latimer asked about the taking of the body of the Báb to Tihrán.

‘Abdu'l-Bahá: "It is just as it is written in the Traveller's Narrative. Read it in the Traveller's Narrative. It is the same. All the other accounts are without foundation. Suleyman Khan, the martyr, brought His Blessed Body to Tihrán."


So, it does seem that the pilgrim's note was in error (about the bullets). (The same (section of the) pilgrim's note seems also, necessarily, to be in error about the League of Nations--given that Shoghi Effendi referred to America's cruel rejection of it while here He was to have confirmed America's absence from it as being reasonable in the absence of all countries participating.)

I say that this should clear the issue up both because 'Abdu'l-Bahá Himself in authoritative text contradicted the pilgrim's note, and because a letter on behalf of the House of Justice stated that 'Abdu'l-Bahá's infallibility was not similarly circumscribed as was Shoghi Effendi's: http://bahai-library.com/?file=uhj_infa ... _abdulbaha (answer #2)

Brett

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Postby brettz9 » Thu Sep 15, 2005 10:17 pm

As far as the Biblical discrepancies in God Passes By, I don't think they can be absolutely categorized as publication errors, according to the letter cited. If they were not, this is also not an essential matter.

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Fri Sep 16, 2005 12:57 pm

brettz9 wrote:I think you are correct


Think? What do you mean by "think?" Did you not just posted the quote from A Traveller's Narrative yourself? The pilgrim's note is obviously wrong. 'Abdu'l-Baha would not contradict Himself, so the pilgrim was probably intoxicated or something while he was writing down his accounts.

So, in conclusion, take pilgrim's notes with a huge grain of salt, unless, of course, the Master Himself approved it.

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Wed Sep 21, 2005 7:09 pm

Moyo,

Just got some quotes for you, on the Baha'i position on pilgrim's notes. You will see that we are not to consider pilgrim's notes authoritative in any way (even if they are true):


'Abdu'l-Baha:

"Thou hast written concerning the pilgrims and pilgrim's notes. Any narrative that is not authenticated by a Text should not be trusted. Narratives, even if true, cause confusion. For the people of Baha, the Text, and only the Text, is authentic."



Shoghi Effendi:


"I truly deplore the unfortunate distortions that have resulted in days past from the incapacity of the interpreter to grasp the meaning of `Abdu'l-Bahá, and from his incompetence to render adequately such truths as have been revealed to him by the Master's statements. Much of the confusion that has obscured the understanding of the believers should be attributed to this double error involved in the inexact rendering of an only partially understood statement. Not infrequently has the interpreter even failed to convey the exact purport of the inquirer's specific questions, and, by his deficiency of understanding and expression in conveying the answer of `Abdu'l-Bahá, has been responsible for reports wholly at variance with the true spirit and purpose of the Cause. It was chiefly in view of the misleading nature of the reports of the informal conversations of `Abdu'l-Bahá with visiting pilgrims, that I have insistently urged the believers of the West to regard such statements as merely personal impressions of the sayings of their Master, and to quote and consider as authentic only such translations as are based upon the authenticated text of His recorded utterances in the original tongue."


Source:

http://bahai-library.com/?file=uhj_beckwith_allegations

Keyvan

Postby Keyvan » Wed Sep 21, 2005 10:15 pm

also we can look to what i am sure are thousands of historical accounts by the individual witnesses of that day.

hasan balyuzi's account was the first to use non bahai sources, rather government records

Each row of soldiers fired in turn. The smoke from so many rifles clouded the scene. When it lifted the Báb was not there. Only His disciple could be seen, standing under the nail in the wall, smiling and unconcerned. Bullets had only severed the ropes with which they were suspended. Cries rang out from the onlookers: 'The Siyyid-i-Báb has gone from our sight!'

(H.M. Balyuzi, The Bab - The Herald of the Day of Days, p. 157)



also western pilgrim's notes from Abdu'l Baha i think are the least reliable, considering He always had a translator.
so to ask a question to him was 1 received by the translator, thus possibly misheard, then 2 interpereted by the translator thus distorted in its original form when it reached Abdu'l Baha, then the response was 3 received by the translator and thus possibly misheard, then 4 interpereted by the translator and given out in a distorted form
then 5 the notetaker could have misheard and 6 the notetaker could have miswrote

the same thing happened with the 1957 "prophecy" in Baha'u'llah and the New Era. people like to burn us by saying that pilgrim note was taken out in subsequent editions after 1957

the only english notes i trust are with Shoghi Effendi since english was used directly

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Thu Sep 22, 2005 10:19 am

Also, remember the story of Mirza Ahmad Sohrab. He made every attempt to remove Shoghi Effendi from 'Abdu'l-Baha (he schemed against the Guardian and successfully prevented Him from getting a passport), and he wanted to translate for 'Abdu'l-Baha instead. So eventually one day after he had translated for the Master, 'Abdu'l-Baha very angrily told him: Translate everything I say!, or something to that effect, because Sohrab was not really translating what the Master was saying, he was changing things and adding a lot of his own thoughts. I'm not saying that this kind of thing happened a lot, and that we should not trust pilgrim's notes, I'm just giving one example of why we might want to be weary of them. And, again, they are nowhere near as authoritative as the written scripture, even if they are true.

Keyvan

Postby Keyvan » Thu Sep 22, 2005 10:26 am

thats an interesting story. where did you find it?

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Thu Sep 22, 2005 10:40 am

probably in Mahmud's diary, but I'm not sure

Guest

Postby Guest » Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:50 am

I didn't find it with a search of "Sohrab" in Mahmud's Diary.

As far as the 1957 prophecy, there was in fact such a prophecy. It is discussed here (and in the related articles): http://bahai-library.com/?file=uhj_beckwith_allegations

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Thu Sep 22, 2005 1:23 pm

i know i'm the one that posted that link (see above)

"the end of the 1,335 days." The Guardian has written that in the Bahá'í teachings themselves there is nothing to indicate that any definite degree of world peace will be established by 1957, nor by 1963, the one hundredth anniversary of the Declaration of Bahá'u'lláh."



Anonymous wrote:I didn't find it with a search of "Sohrab" in Mahmud's Diary.

As far as the 1957 prophecy, there was in fact such a prophecy. It is discussed here (and in the related articles): http://bahai-library.com/?file=uhj_beckwith_allegations

Keyvan

Postby Keyvan » Thu Sep 22, 2005 2:14 pm

heres what i find so interesting.

from what i have heard and read there were two dates in the history of the formidive age where people speculated and derived from pilgrims notes that world peace would come.

the first was 1957

the second was 2000


isnt it interesting that Shoghi Effendi passed in 1957 and "the then unofficial ambassador to the faith" Ruhiyyih Khanoom passed in 2000?

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Thu Sep 22, 2005 3:16 pm

no

those claims are not official

Guest

Postby Guest » Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:08 pm

Baha'i Warrior wrote:no

those claims are not official



regardless, they were highly speculated. thats why i find it so interesting.

Guest

1957-2000, 1963-2001

Postby Guest » Mon Sep 26, 2005 2:03 am

Shoghi Effendi passed away in 1957. It is also interesting to note that the Universal House of Justice was formed in 1963. That the Millenial Forum at the United Nations at which the Baha'is were the only Non-governmental organization invited to speak, the terraces on mount carmel, as well as the commencement of the 5th epoch of the formative age all occured in 2000. And that the completion of this stage of the projects of Mount Carmel as well as the official opening of the terraces occured in 2001, as well as the commencement of a series of 5 year plans that would guide the Faith untill the year 2021, the anniversary of the passing of Abdu'l Baha. Given the difference between the years 1957 and 1963 as well as the difference between 2000 and 2001 in light of the fact that the Guardian clearly states that the process of disintegration and integration would exponentially speed up, it certainly gives us the possibility of a relationship and significance between the dates (even if not authoritatively so). Also notice the corresponding acts of distruction and violence with the Civil War in Vietnam and Vietnam War (1957-1975) as well as September 11th and the invasion of Afghanistan (2001). Of cource, this is all highly speculative; but certainly awckward and enlightening.

Guest

Speculative?

Postby Guest » Mon Sep 26, 2005 2:10 am

Yes, they are uncertain, but not necessarily speculative. It is conceivable for Abdu'l-baha and Shoghi Effendi to have been eluding to the general commencement of certain developments.

1957, the passing of Shoghi Effendi, heralds into existence a new stage of the Faith in which the Universal House of Justice would be called into being.

2000, the completin of the Terraces, heralds the completion of the projects on Mount Carmel as well as the next stage of growth for the Baha'i Faith.

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Postby Keyvan » Mon Sep 26, 2005 11:44 pm

i think playing around with dates are pretty fascinating myself

world congress 1
1963
100 years after the Declaration of Baha'u'llah

then 29 years later

world congress 2
1992
100 years after the Ascention of Baha'u'llah

then 29 years later

world congress 3
2021
100 years after the Ascention of Abdu'l Baha


now lets pretend we have another one
again 29 years later
world congress 4
2050

200 years after the Ascention of The Bab


say another one
again 29 years later


world congress 5
2079
100 years after the revolution in the Land of Ta


say 29 years after that

world congress 6
2108
100 years after ??????????????????????????????????????????


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