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Posted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 9:19 pm
I have searched quite a bit and have been unable to find the specific detail's on Tolstoy's references to the Baha'i Faith.
I had the section of, Abdu'l-Baha in London it is written:
"The same questioner said: “I have read much of Tolstoy and I see a parallel between his teachings and yours. In one of his books he speaks 95 of the Enigma of Life, and describes how life is wasted in our endeavour to find the Key. But Tolstoy goes on to say: ‘There is a man in Persia who holds the secret.’”
“Yes,” said ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, “I received a letter from Tolstoy, and in it he said that he wished to write a book upon Bahá’u’lláh.” (Abdu'l-Baha in London [i]p.94-95[/i]
However, I have been unable to find exactly where Tolstoy has written this.
Any info would be great.
Posted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 9:58 pm
Or is it in the letter to Abdu'l-Baha from Tolstoy that this is written?
Posted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 10:43 pm
Courtesy Google, http://watsongregory.homestead.com/file ... es_ps.html
cites the quotation as being from "(The Bahá'i World, vol. 13, p. 818 also Tolstoy and the Bahá'i Faith, p. 40)"
Needless to say, the book "Tolstoy and the Bahá'i Faith" sounds like it should be a helpful resource: http://www.amazon.com/Tolstoy-Bahai-Fai ... 0853982155
Posted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 11:39 pm
Thank you very much Brett,
I suppose the best option would be to find this book
About the specific part of the quote, "Tolstoy goes on to say: ‘There is a man in Persia who holds the secret.’".... Would you happen to know if this is from one of Tolstoy's works?
Posted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 11:51 pm
From 'Abdu'l-Baha in London that you cite, it sounds to me like it is from one of his books, though that book does not have the Persian original to consider it an authentic talk... Dunno...
Posted: Sat Jul 03, 2010 1:37 am
My suggestion too is the book about Tolstoy and maybe find a way to correspond directly with the author.
Mr Ali Nakhjavani's father was from the Caucasus and he spoke Russian, and Abdu'l-Baha directed him to communicate with Tolstoy. My impression is there was a good deal of correspondence. Mr Nakhjavani went back to -- was it Baku? -- at some point later in life, and to the area where his family lived. (Mr. N's father passed away in Mr. N's infancy, he never knew him; he may even have died prior to his birth, I'm not sure). Anyway, one of the Baha'is told Mr. Nakhjavani that there was a time when it was extremely dangerous for the Baha'is (not sure, but likely this was during the Soviet communist time) and this believer told him that he was the custodian of the Tolstoy correspondence and other papers of his father, and had to burn all of his father's correspondence with Tolstoy due to the peril the Baha'is were in.
I was reading the really wonderful new book about the Hand of the Cause Mr Grossman, who was a very methodical researcher and writer, and who carefully gathered the German / Austrian Baha'i history of the Faith; but during the Nazi era, had to with his own hands, burn it all in the family stove, because the Gestapo was questioning him, and the history of the Faith named names, and these people and their families would all have been in great danger.
Posted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 11:27 pm
I realize I come rather late to this discussion but thought you might find this link of interest. http://www.ameenrihani.org/pdf/Rihani%2 ... dionov.pdf
I met a great-nephew of the Djazzab mentioned in the article a few years ago in Bakersfield, California. A Canadain Baha'i, Don Dainty, of Ottawa met and recorded an interview with another relative of Djazzab while in pligrimage in the 1970s.
Posted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 9:46 pm
One anecdote might be said here which Hand of the Cause of God, Mr. Furutan related, was that on some occasion I believe he and another Hand (or other Baha'i) had discussed who was the better writer, Dostoevsky or Tolstoy, some time later, while Shoghi Effendi was discussing some other matter, he suddenly said to Mr. Furutan, "Dostoevsky is the better writer.". Sorry this is just a paraphrasing, but the gist was like this.
Posted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 10:36 pm
I started an openly collaborative wiki page on the Baha'i Faith and Tolstoy: http://bahai9.com/wiki/Leo_Tolstoy
Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 11:02 am
Hi, here are some more texts:
Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 4:38 pm
Following is another words of Tolstoy praising the Babi and the Baha’i Faiths:
"The teaching of the Bábís," wrote Leo Tolstoy, "....have great future before them....I therefore sympathize the Bábísm with all my heart, inasmuch as it teaches people brotherhood and equality and sacrifice of material life for service to God....The teachings of the Bábís which come to us out of Islam have through Bahá'u'lláh's teachings been gradually developed, and now present us with the highest and purest form of religious teaching." (Shoghi Effendi, Summary Statement - 1947, Special UN Committee on Palestine).
I want to add that TOLSTOY was believing in the teachings of the Baha’i Faith and in his writings praised the Faith, but the only reason that he didn’t embraced it, was that he didn’t believe in the principle of the Faith that “the only way for man to contact God is by means of His Manifestations and nobody can commune God by his own efforts”.