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Abstract:
Overview of the first 100 years of the Bahá'í Faith in Europe, including growth and the distinctive aspects of this community, external affairs, the role of women, and Bahá'í studies.
Notes:
Also published in Payam-i-Bahá'í No. 228, November 1998, 15-24.

See also Hassall's Baha'i Communities by Country: Research Notes.


100 Years of the Bahá'í Faith in Europe

by Graham Hassall and Seena Fazel

published in Bahá'í Studies Review, 8, pages 35-44
1998
Abstract: This paper provides a brief overview of the first 100 years of the Bahá'í Faith in Europe. It discusses the growth and the distinctive aspects of this community, with emphasis on external affairs, the role of women, and Bahá'í studies. It suggests certain challenges ahead, concluding with the important role that European Bahá'ís have still to play in shaping an emerging global Bahá'í culture.

THE BAHÁ'Í COMMUNITY IN EUROPE is 100 years old. Although reports of Bábí persecutions appeared in the European press from 1845, and Bahá'u'lláh resided on European soil in 1863-8 in the course of his final exile to Palestine, it was not until 1898 that the first Bahá'í group was established in Europe.(1) From small foundations in Paris, Bahá'ís from Europe have distinguished themselves in many ways in the international Bahá'í community. This article will survey some of the unique features of this regional community, and review some of its distinctive contributions to the development of the Bahá'í Faith. We discuss to what extent the Báb's prediction in 1850 that Europeans would come "over to his religion"(2) has been realised.

Overview

Religious identity has always been important in Europe, but it has often resulted in conflict. The tumultuous socio-political and religious conditions experienced by the peoples of Europe this century have provided many contexts for the emergence of the European Bahá'í communities. In western Europe, liberal societies moving toward conditions of post-Christian secularism were tolerant of new religious movements, but not necessarily moved by them. In the south, Catholic traditions remained strong in Italy and Spain, while in Greece, the orthodox Church retained the people's allegiance, in culture and belief. The nations of northern Europe were arguably more open to religious change, possibly a consequence of their experience of religious innovation during the Reformation. From the second world war until recent times, the states of eastern Europe remained inaccessibly wrapped in communist control, and, officially, atheistic doctrine.

In such circumstances, Bahá'í communities were started by individuals, who formed small groups that later matured into organised Bahá'í communities. At its beginnings in the 1900s, activity focussed on Paris, where May Bolles (later May Maxwell) introduced the Faith to such notable Bahá'ís as Agnes Alexander, who took it to Hawaii, Japan and Korea; Thomas Breakwell, an early English Bahá'í; Hippolyte Dreyfus, the first French believer; and to such expatriate Americans as Laura Clifford Barney, Juliet Thompson, Marion Jack, and Sydney Sprague. Mary Thornburgh-Cropper also heard about the Faith in Paris (from Phoebe Hearst who was on her way to see 'Abdu'l-Bahá in Palestine) and became a Bahá'í in 1898. Upon her return to England, she told her friend Ethel Rosenberg about the religion.(3) Lady Blomfield and her daughter heard of the Faith in 1907 in Paris from Bertha Herbert, who later married Horace Holley. Holley was another significant Bahá'í who first heard of the Faith in Paris. A major impetus to the presence of the community was given between 1911 and 1913, when 'Abdu'l-Bahá visited Switzerland, France, Germany, Hungary, England, and Scotland. A 1925 list of "leading local Bahá'í Centres" included the European communities of Paris, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, and Sweden. It listed no fewer than 26 "Foreign Bahá'í Centres" in Germany, compared to three in England and two in Switzerland.(4)

The first two national spiritual assemblies (NSAs) in Europe were formed in the British Isles(5) and in Germany and Austria, both in 1923. Intensive efforts were made to re-establish the communities following the devastation of the second world war.(6) No other national body was formed until Italy and Switzerland in 1953. By the end of the Ten Year Crusade in 1963, another fourteen had been established (France in 1958; Austria in 1959; Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and Italy all in 1962).(7) No further national Bahá'í institutions were formed until the NSAs of Iceland and Ireland were established in 1972, followed by Greece in 1977, Cyprus in 1978, and the Canary Islands in 1984. The collapse of communism permitted revival in the 1990s of Bahá'í communities throughout countries of the former Eastern Bloc. The first local spiritual assembly (LSA) since the second world war in eastern Europe was elected on 21 March 1990 in Cluj, Romania. National bodies were soon established in Romania (1991), Czechoslovakia (1991), Russia, Georgia and Armenia (1992), Albania (1992), the Baltic States (1992), Bulgaria (1992), Hungary (1992), Poland (1992), Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova (1992), and Slovenia and Croatia (1994).(8) Armenia, Georgia, and Belarus all elected separate NSAs in 1995, followed by Moldova in 1996, and separate NSAs for the Czech and Slovak Republics were formed in 1998. A national assembly was also established in Sicily.

Europe in the Bahá'í writings

A number of European monarchs received letters from Bahá'u'lláh,(9) and Shoghi Effendi links the downfall of virtually all of them to their failure to heed his counsel. Shoghi Effendi refers to Europe as "the cradle of a highly-vaunted civilization, as the torch bearer of liberty and the mainspring of the forces of world industry and commerce."(10) But it is also "a materially highly advanced yet spiritually famished, much tormented, fear-ridden, hopelessly-sundered, heterogeneous conglomeration of races, nations, sects and classes."(11) Shoghi Effendi's question remains as relevant today as when he wrote it: "Will it be America, or will it be one of the nations of Europe that will seize the torch of Divine Guidance from Persia's fettered hands and with it set the western world aflame?"(12) In particular, a clear theme in the Bahá'í writings is the importance of Germany. 'Abdu'l-Bahá lavished praise on a country which would "surpass all other regions,"(13) and "lead all the nations and peoples of Europe spiritually," by virtue of its spiritual potentialities and geographical situation.(14)

Growth

Bahá'í communities in Europe tend to be smaller than those in countries of comparable size in other continents. In mid-1997, there were an estimated 104,000 Bahá'ís in Europe, more than Oceania (73,000) but less than the other continents.(15) The proportion of Bahá'ís in relation to the total population, however, is only 140 Bahá'ís per million population - the least of all the continents, and 9 times less than the world average. Africa has around 20 times more Bahá'ís per population, and Oceania and North America each have about 17 times more. In terms of institutional development, there are far more LSAs in 1997 in Asia, Africa, and the Americas (3897, 4053, and 3520 respectively) than in Europe (958).(16) A more accurate indicator of the level of grassroots Bahá'í activity is probably the number of LSAs per million population: Europe has more LSAs per million population (1.3) than Asia (1.1). Oceania has 27.7 LSAs per million, Africa 5.3, and the Americas 4.4. In terms of growth, the only continent with an increase in the number of LSAs since 1992 has been Europe (2.5% annual growth from 1992-97), and Europe and Oceania were the only continents to grow between 1986-92 (2.8% annual growth in Europe).(17)

Most of this growth was generated by the re-establishment of the Faith in central and eastern Europe. This may have been anticipated by Shoghi Effendi who commented on how the people there were "much more receptive."(18) In the late 1990s, the two largest Bahá'í communities are Albania (13,000 Bahá'ís) and Romania (7,000). The countries with the most Bahá'ís per million population are Albania (4029), Iceland (1345), Luxembourg (983), Portugal (605), Cyprus (529), Romania (308), Ireland (175) and Norway (173).(19) Iceland leads the table for LSAs per million (34) followed by Luxembourg (27), Cyprus (8) and Ireland (6).(20) The countries with the smallest Bahá'í presences, excluding the countries of the former Eastern Bloc, are Italy (1.1 LSAs per million), France (0.6) and Greece (0.6).

Three things are notable in this sort of demographic overview. The first is that the Faith has a strong presence in the islands of Europe. This is partly a consequence of their small size, and also due to the emphasis placed in promoting the Faith in the islands of Europe by 'Abdu'l-Bahá and Shoghi Effendi. The larger size of Bahá'í communities in islands even extends to large ones such as the United Kingdom (58 million), which has around three times the number of Bahá'ís and LSAs per million than countries of similar size in Europe. Second is the role of immigration. Although the Faith has grown steadily in most western European countries, sociologist of religion Margit Warburg has concluded from detailed statistical analysis that the recent growth of Bahá'ís in Europe is "as much the result of immigration as it is of recruitment of new believers."(21) The arrival of Persian Bahá'ís throughout the nations of Europe was stimulated by two historical phases: the pioneering efforts in the World Crusade (1953-63) and flight from Iran following the 1979 Islamic revolution.(22) The third feature that is highlighted in these statistics is the impressive growth of the Faith in Iceland. What makes Iceland so special? It is one of the smallest countries in Europe, with only 270,000 people. Immigration is not the reason for its relatively large size - in 1997, there were only 12 foreign Bahá'ís in Iceland, of which 2 were of Iranian background.(23) Warburg explains the difference culturally, in that the Icelandic are more likely to innovate religiously than other Nordic populations.(24)

Distinctive features

Although the Bahá'í Faith has not had rapid numerical growth in Europe, other signs of its progress are apparent. Women have played a distinctive role in the Faith's development, amidst traditionally patriarchal cultures and religions; some of the foremost scholars of the Bahá'í Faith - professed believers and otherwise - have come from Europe; and the European communities have contributed greatly, over an extended period of time, to public awareness of the religion, and to the protection of the Iranian Bahá'í community. Other distinctive contributions are being made by individuals in the fields of music and the arts. A small number are world famous, such as Bernard Leach, the pre-eminent potter of this century, who was the first craftsperson to receive the British Companion of Honour.(25) Europe has led the Bahá'í world in the field of publishing, and the UK alone publishes nearly half the English-language books on the Faith. Also important are the efforts of European Bahá'í youth, of such organisations as the European Bahá'í Business Forum and the Associations for Bahá'í Studies (English, French, German, Italian and Russian speaking), and European pioneers, living in places as far afield as Africa, the Pacific, and the Caribbean. In terms of institution building, a couple of examples are notable. The "Africa Campaign" to establish Bahá'í communities in Africa was spearheaded by the British Bahá'ís in the 1950s and thereafter. The re-establishment of communities in eastern and central Europe after the collapse of the Soviet Union was largely led by European Bahá'ís. Europe has also seen a high degree of cooperation between different national institutions. This was first seen with the European Teaching Committee of 1946, and more recently in the work of the European Bahá'í Youth Council. The spread of the Faith throughout Europe, from the largest countries to the smallest island groups, is itself a unique characteristic of the Bahá'í community, rarely achieved, if at all, by other religious communities.

The role of women

Women have played the predominant role in the establishment of the Faith in Europe. North American Bahá'í women pioneers were involved in establishing the early communities of Czechoslovakia, Denmark, France, the Netherlands, Norway and the United Kingdom. Marion Jack's sacrificial efforts to establish the Faith in Bulgaria were legendary, and much admired by the Guardian. Martha Root's travels, particularly in Central and Eastern Europe, informed many prominent persons of the religion and some of them became Bahá'ís, such as Queen Marie of Romania. Shoghi Effendi placed great significance on Queen Marie's conversion, as she was the first monarch to become a Bahá'í.(26) What made these foreign women so successful in spreading the Bahá'í message? In the case of Denmark, Warburg has argued that their success was due to the Danes being attracted to their "cultural style" - "emancipated, independent, and idealistic" in much the same way as Africans were attracted by the power of European Christian missionaries, by their literacy and culture of modernity.(27)

The European public

Certain aspects of European Bahá'í history are notable. There are a number of firsts: in 1845, The Times of London included the first mention of the Bábí movement in the west. The first public mention of the Bábí religion is thought to be by Matthew Arnold, a writer and critic, in 1871 at the Birmingham and Midland Institute, while the first public presentation on the Bábí-Bahá'í Faiths was by Edward Granville Browne at the Literary Society of Pembroke College, Cambridge, in 1889, and shortly after at the Essay Society of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Browne quoted Bahá'u'lláh's words, "Ye are all the fruits of one tree and the leaves of one branch," in a lecture at the South Place Institute, London, in 1890.

An interesting theme in European Bahá'í history is its role in diplomatic work, especially on behalf of the persecuted Iranian Bahá'ís. This may be said to have commenced with European diplomats who sought relief for persecuted Bábís. The British were instrumental in safeguarding 'Abdu'l-Bahá's life during the first world war. By the 1920s this work was manifest in the work of the "International Bureau Bahá'í" headed by Jean Stannard in Geneva. In 1924 and 1936 papers presented on Bahá'í themes at large multi-faith conferences raised the profile of the Bahá'í Faith significantly.(28)

Following the Iranian revolution, parliaments and non-governmental organisations throughout Europe joined the efforts of the European Bahá'í communities to halt the persecution of the Iranian Bahá'í community.(29) In the early 1980s the European Parliament, the European Human Rights Commission, and several European national parliaments passed resolutions condemning the actions of the Iranian regime.(30) Despite the high level of recognition that accompanied these developments, however, there are still degrees of uncertainty in the public mind. In some instances, the Faith continues to be reported as a "sect."(31) The Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe has highlighted recently "[a]n alarming trend towards religious intolerance in Europe ... over the past several years, as exemplified by the investigations carried out by the French, Belgian and German parliaments into the activities of minority or belief groups." The Commission explains how these parliaments have instituted investigations into "dangerous sects," and that the Belgian and French parliaments have listed as "dangerous" groups "independent evangelical Protestant churches, Catholic communities, Bahá'í, Jehovah Witness, and Hasidic Jews."(32)

Bahá'í studies

European scholars have observed the progress of the Bahá'í Faith from the time of its origins. A number of orientalists who were not themselves Bahá'ís became students of the new religion. Prominent amongst them was Edward Granville Browne, himself attracted to its study by Gobineau's 1865 book, Religion et philosophies dans l'Asie centrale. M. Gabriel Sassi gave an address on the Bahá'í religion at the Paris Exposition of 1900. A.L.M. Nicolas, who had been first interpreter at the French legation at Tehran, published several early translations of Bahá'í writings.(33) In 1948, renowned historian Arnold Toynbee observed that the Bahá'í Faith was amongst the new religions having the potential to establish a new civilisation.(34)

As the Bahá'í community emerged, so too did a number of its scholar members. The Hands of the Cause in the British Isles were all distinguished scholars: Esslemont, Townshend, Ferraby and Balyuzi. Other scholars included Dreyfus and Bausani. An attachment to learning has also been a characteristic of Bahá'í communities as a whole. The German Bahá'ís, for example, were producing five Bahá'í journals by the 1920s.(35) The present generation, which the House of Justice highlights "include[s] outstanding scholars of the Faith,"(36) have maintained this momentum, and much of the current work is channelled through various Associations for Bahá'í Studies in Europe. Looking at who is most often cited by others, the most widely used method to assess an individual's impact in a particular field, seven of the ten most cited authors in academic literature on the Bábí-Bahá'í religions in 1988-93 were resident in the UK and Ireland. Of the eight that are living, four are British.(37)

Challenges ahead

Among the many challenges that lie ahead, we would like to highlight three. The first is to build on the achievements of the past. Bahá'í communities need to sustain their high artistic integrity. Bahá'í studies would greatly benefit from centres and libraries to assist researchers. It is surprising that so few resources have been channelled in this direction. Europeans have a history of charting unfamiliar waters. This innovation needs to be encouraged within the European Bahá'í community. In the field of external affairs, the key challenge is the extent to which Bahá'ís can enter public life, contributing and refining the concept of the new Europe. To what degree can public discourse on civil society and cosmopolitan citizenship be informed by Bahá'í perspectives?

A second challenge is to further consolidate the Faith throughout the continent. The House of Justice specifically mention the need to strengthen Bahá'í communities in the arctic and sub-arctic areas, the islands (including establishing an NSA of the Faeroes), amongst the Romany people and other minorities, and in the Ukraine and in European Russia. An important part of this process is to adapt the presentation of the Faith to local needs, bearing in mind that "both spiritual force and intellectual clarity must be recognized as vital elements."(38)

A third task is a European contribution to Bahá'í culture. Much of the world appears to have given way to the American way of doing things. This inevitably affects the Bahá'í community and needs to be tempered with other cultural styles. The cultural and intellectual traditions of Europe, with emphasis on values such as high-mindedness, refinement, taste, thoroughness, and breadth have much to offer any emerging Bahá'í global culture. Shoghi Effendi remarks about the influence of European Bahá'ís:

He urges you to tell the American friends about the work and the new Bahá'ís in Europe. These new believers, with the well-balanced minds of Europeans, are a fine type, and … have much to contribute of maturity and wisdom.(39)
A passage from 'Abdu'l-Bahá predicts the preeminent role that Europe will have to play in shaping the future Bahá'í world:
Had He [Bahá'u'lláh] appeared in Europe, its people would have seized their opportunity, and His Cause, by virtue of the freedom of thought, would by this time have compassed the earth. But alas! this Cause, though it first appeared in Persia, yet eventually it shall be seen how the peoples of Europe have wrested it from its hand. Take note of this and remember it in the future. Ultimately you shall see how it has come to pass.(40)

End Notes

  1. A photo captioned "Pioneer group of Occidental Bahá'ís in Paris, France, about the year 1900" appears in Bahá'í World 1926-28 (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1928) 29.
  2. The full reference of his comments to Dr Cormick, an English physician who was asked to assess his fitness to stand trial, is: "He only once deigned to answer me, on my saying that I was not a Mussulman and was willing to know something about his religion, as I might be inclined to adopt it. He regarded me very intently on my saying this, and replied that he had no doubt of all Europeans coming over to his religion" (cited in M. Momen, The Bábí and Bahá'í Religions 1844-1944: some contemporary Western accounts [Oxford: George Ronald, 1981] 74).
  3. Robert Stockman, "The Bahá'í Faith in England and Germany, 1900-1913," World Order 27.3 (1996): 31-42.
  4. Bahá'í Yearbook 1925-1926 (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1926) 101.
  5. Referred to in Bahá'í Yearbook 1925-1926 as "Great Britain and Ireland" (101).
  6. M.K. Sprague, "The First Bahá'í European Conference," World Order 14.11 (1949).
  7. In 1957 Regional Assemblies were formed in Scandinavia and Finland, the Benelux Countries and the Iberian Peninsula. These later dissolved to form national assemblies.
  8. By 1998 Yugoslavia did not have a NSA. However, its first LSA was established in November 1990 in Belgrade. The Ten Year Crusade ended with an isolated Bahá'í in Belgrade.
  9. An interesting reference to this has recently appeared in C.N. Murphy, International Organisations and Industrial Change: Global Governance Since 1850 (Polity Press, 1994): "… a Persian aristocrat found very little interest among Europe's leaders in his proposals for an international tribunal to decide disputes between nations and an international police force to support its decisions. But then Bahá'u'lláh, as the founder of the Bahá'í Faith, did not limit his arguments to the functionalist rhetoric of the public system builders. Tsar Alexander II, who claimed a special interest in issues of international peace, did not respond to Bahá'u'lláh's appeal. Queen Victoria was unenthusiastic, saying 'If this is of God it will endure; if it is not, it can do no harm' (Hatcher and Martin 1984:45). But Serge Yulevich Witte's success in selling the same proposals to Nicholas II suggests that Bahá'u'lláh may have gotten further if, like Lubin, he had left God out of his argument."
  10. World Order of Bahá'u'lláh (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1974) 31.
  11. Messages to the Bahá'í World: 1950-1957 (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1971) 33. Cf. Light of Divine Guidance, vol. 1 (Hofheim-Langenhain: Bahá'í-Verlag, 1985) 113.
  12. Bahá'í Administration (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1968) 89.
  13. From a tablet of 'Abdu'l-Bahá cited in "A Compilation of Bahá'í Writings on Germany, France, Italy, and Switzerland," The Bahá'í Studies Review 4.1 (1994): 108.
  14. From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi dated 15 March 1934 cited in ibid., 119.
  15. Britannica Book of the Year 1998 (Chicago: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1998).
  16. Information released from the department of statistics, Bahá'í World Centre, November 1998.
  17. We are grateful to Bryan Graham for the growth statistics.
  18. From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi dated 29 January 1932 cited in "Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union: A Compilation from the Bahá'í Writings," The Bahá'í Studies Review 3.1 (1993): 101.
  19. Some of these numbers are taken from an unpublished paper presented by R. Andrew Turvey at the ABS-ESE annual conference 1996, Oxford UK, and others are from direct communication with NSAs.
  20. 1997 LSA data from the department of statistics, Bahá'í World Centre.
  21. M. Warburg, "Growth Patterns of New Religions: The Case of Bahá'í," in Robert Towler (ed.), New Religions and the New Europe (Aarhus: Aarhus University Press, 1995) 187.
  22. For research on this, see M.F. Kerschbaumer (1991), Persecution, exile and integration of a religious minority: the integration of Iranian Bahá'í Refugees in Swiss Exile (University of Vienna, PhD); and M. Momen, "The Integration into the British Bahá'í Community of Recent Iranian Bahá'í Migrants," Bahá'í Studies Bulletin 4. 3-4 (1990): 50-53.
  23. Personal communication with the NSA, 21 December 1998. This is in contrast with Luxembourg, the second largest community according to LSAs per million, where there is a large Persian Bahá'í community.
  24. M. Warburg, "Growth Patterns of New Religions: The Case of Bahá'í," 183.
  25. The first critical biography of Leach has recently been published by the Tate Gallery. It has only one reference to Leach's belief: "Tobey was to introduce Leach to the Bahá'í faith, and to become a central figure in his continuing attempts to synthesise the spiritual traditions of East and West" (Edmund de Waal, Bernard Leach [London: Tate Gallery, n.d., ?1997] 44-46).
  26. See H. Pakula, The Last Romantic: A Biography of Queen Marie of Romania (London, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1985); Jan T. Jasion, "Queen Marie of Romania: A Preliminary Bibliography," Journal of Bahá'í Studies 6.2 (1994): 15-23; Robert Postlethwaite, "Queen Marie and the Bahá'í Faith" Journal of Bahá'í Studies 6.2 (1994): 55-86. Pakula's book has only one paragraph that mentions the Bahá'í Faith: "Carol's abdication was a windfall for the enemies of the dynasty. They seized on his desertion to cut down his mother and succeeded in planting serious doubts about her in the minds of her people. In the desperation and near loss of faith that followed, Queen Marie turned to the teachings of the Bahá'í religion, which she discovered a month or so after Carol's flight. The Bahá'í call for the unification of humanity under one faith was vastly appealing to the Queen, who had always rebelled against the rigid distinctions separating her immediate family into three religions, and the Bahá'í goal of universal peace and its warnings of social upheaval seemed prophetic to the distraught woman..." (337).
  27. M. Warburg, "The Circle, the Brotherhood, and the Ecclesiastical Body: Bahá'í in Denmark, 1925-1987," in Religion, Tradition and Renewal, A.W. Geertz and J.P. Jensen (eds.) (Aarhus: Aarhus University Press, 1991).
  28. W.L. Hare (ed.), Religions of the Empire. Papers delivered at the conference on Some Living Religions within the British Empire, London, 22 September - 3 October 1924 (England: Duckworth, 1925); H. Bishop, "World Congress of Faiths: London, England, July 3-18, 1936," World Order 2.7 (1936): 247-250; F.E. Pinchon, "World Congress of Faiths: London, England, July 3-18, 1936," World Order 2.7 (1936): 250-254.
  29. E.g., Roger Cooper, "The Bahá'ís of Iran," Minority Rights Group, Report No. 51, 1982.
  30. Geoffrey Nash, "The Persecution of the Bahá'í Community of Iran," in The Bahá'í World 1979-1983 (Haifa: Bahá'í World Centre Publications, 1986) 249-356.
  31. See, e.g., M. Voisin and K. Dobbelaere, "Sectes et nouveaux mouvements religieux en Belgique [Sects and new religious movements in Belgium]," Recherches Sociologiques [Belgium] 16.3 (1985): 359-392; and the Guardian newspaper on the burial of a boy of mixed religious background in a Bahá'í cemetery: "The boy was finally put to rest on Sunday...by devotees of a faith the Pesahovics' had never heard of - the Bahá'ís. Rick Miller, the sect's representative in Jerusalem, said he found nothing in Bahá'í teachings which would prevent Grisha's burial. The creed encourages spiritual unity and the 'advancement of civilisation'" (Julian Borger, The Guardian, 6.8.98).
  32. Press release from Associated Press, New York, dated 23.7.98, "Helsinki Commission announces joint hearing with House International Relations Committee on continuing religious intolerance in Europe."
  33. Le Livre des sept preuves de la mission du Báb (Paris, 1902); Le Libre de la certitude (1904); and Le Beyân arabe (1905).
  34. Civilization on Trial (London: Oxford University Press, 1948) 204.
  35. Bahá'í Yearbook 1925-26, 103.
  36. Universal House of Justice Message to Europe, Ridván 153.
  37. S. Fazel and J. Danesh, "Bahá'í scholarship: an examination using citation analysis," The Bahá'í Studies Review 5.1 (1995): 13-26.
  38. Universal House of Justice Message to Europe, Ridván 153.
  39. From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi dated 21 July 1949 cited in The Bahá'í Studies Review 1.1 (1991): 52.
  40. The Bahá'í World: 1928-1930 (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1930) 75. We are grateful to Ahang Rabbani and Iskandar Hai for bringing this reference to our attention.

The authors are grateful to Robert Weinberg for his comments on an earlier draft.

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