The Dawn-Breakers Study Outline
6) Jump to the actual Chapters of The Dawn-Breakers:Intro.1 Intro.2 Preface 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 Epilogue Other Sections
Introduction Preface 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 Epilogue
For other sections, see the Contents page.
He returned to Mashhad from the prince's camp and was to leave 7 days later to Karbilá. The prince and officer both offered to pay for his expenses, though he declined all but a sword and horse from the officer.
Mullá Husayn had inspired indescribable devotion in the people to the extent that crowds besieged his house hoping to be allowed to accompany him on his journey toward sacrificeĞincluding mothers and sisters urging to offer their sons & brothers as offerings.
A messenger brought him the Báb's turban, news he had been given by Him a new name, Siyyid 'Alí, & was told to wear the green turban, unfurl the Black Standard and hasten to Jazíriy-i-Khadrá' (Verdant Isle) to assist Quddús.
Mullá Husayn obeyed, went on horse & marched with 202 companions to Jazíriy-i-Khadrá'. They proclaimed the Cause in every village & hamlet they passed, invited them to embrace it, & among these a few were asked to join.
Hájí 'Abdu'l-Majíd, Badí's father, noted merchant, & son of owner of best-known turquoise mine of Níshápúr, enlisted there & forsook material honors & riches. In Míyámay 30 declared (all but Mullá 'Ísá were martyred at Tabarsí). The chief of these Mírzá Zaynu'l-'Ábidín (Shaykh Ahmad's pupil) had encouraged his new 18-year-old son-in-law to join him on his last journey as a true father to enable to partake of the joy of salvation (footnote 1, p. 326)
At Chashmih-'Alí near Dámghán on highroad to Mázindarán, Mullá Husayn broke journey for 3 days under shadow of a big tree by a running stream. He told them they stood at the parting of ways & that they would await His decree as to the direction they should take.
(326) Later a storm struck down a large branch from the tree & Mullá Husayn observed that Muhammad Sháh's sovereignty had been uprooted & thrown to the ground. A messenger arrived 3 days later announcing the king's death. Mullá Husayn pointed toward Mázindarán, stated that it was the way to Karbilá, and informed those who were unprepared for the trials ahead to return home. He repeated this warning several times, announced that 72 of his companions and him would die for the Well-Beloved, and again asked those unable to renounce the world to depart for they would later be unable to escape. 20 companions returned.
(cont. from 14,p. 267) Mullá Husayn's approach, growing popularity, manner of departure with the Black Standard, and the number, discipline, and enthusiasm of his companions aroused the hatred of the Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá'. He had the crier call the people to the masjid, announcing a momentous sermon none of the faithful could ignore. Once there, he threw his turban on the ground, tore the neck of his shirt, bewailed the plight of the Faith, called them to awake against the enemies who were about to wipe out all that they cherished as pure & holy in Islám, decried that Mullá Husayn had insulted him amidst his disciples & had expected honors, and called upon all to attack them at dawn.
(328) Due to his eloquence, authority, and fear of losing their lives & property, they all found or created any weapon they could, and determined to kill them & take their property.
Mullá Husayn, after offering morning prayer, had his companions discard their possessions, to demonstrate their renunciation of earthly things (including their steeds). Badí's father was the 1st to discard his satchel (including valuable turquoise).
They met their enemies a few miles from Bárfurúsh who menacingly blocked them & insulted them. Mullá Husayn prevented his companions from unsheathing their swords until they were to be forced to protect themselves. Just then, shots brought 6 to the ground. One begged him to allow them to defend themselves but he refused as the number was not yet complete.
When a bullet killed a siyyid from Yazd who had walked from Mashhad and was of his staunchest supporters, Mullá Husayn looked up & prayed to God, describing their welcome by these people, expressed his intention to guide them to Truth & how he wished to obey His command to defend themselves.
He unsheathed his sword, spurred his charger into their midst, pursued his assailant & cut his sword through the tree, the musket that the man had held up as a shield & the man's body (with his left hand according to Mírzá Jání. Even the Muslims did not deny the event occurred. , p. 331, note 1). They all fled after seeing this. The Báb & Quddús both later praised him for this. Mírzá Ahmad related the story of Tabarsí to Nabíl a month after it occurred.
While staying at Mullá Sádiq-i-Khurásání's in Mashhad where he had been invited to teach the Cause, Nabíl asked Mírzá Muhammad-i-Furúghí of the nature of this account. Mírzá Muhammad stated that he would never have believed it if he hadn't seen it. He told how the cruel and suppressing Mírzá Taqí Khán (Amír-Nizám, I'timádu'd-Dawlih, Grand Vazír, successor to Hájí Mírzá Áqásí) rebuked Prince Mihdí-Qulí Mírzá for his loss to such a handful of young contemptible students (and questioning what would have happened had he ordered him to defeat the Russian & Ottoman government forces). The prince had a messenger bring in the rifle barrel to demonstrate the strength of his opponent & described how he had cut the tree, musket, & man into 6 pieces with 1 stroke.
The minister was compelled by such a challenge, and despite overwhelming forces, was only able to defeat him by pledging on the Qur'án to abstain from attacking them and reneging on his pledge.
Nabíl narrates how this act of Mullá Husayn won many admirers including poets who spread knowledge of this deed, including Ridá-Qulí Khán-i-Lalih-Báshí who praised his strength and skill in Táríkh-i-Násirí.
Nabíl related & Mírzá Muhammad (?) refuted the claim in the Násikhu't-Taváríkh that Mullá Husayn had been extensively trained in swordsmanship as a youth. Mírzá (?) Muhammad explained how as a long-time classmate & friend of Mullá Husayn, he knew that he had been even weaker than himself, his hand trembled as he wrote, limiting how much and often he could write even until going to Mázindarán. From that moment, however, Mullá Husayn was transformed and was later always the first to spring forward into battle, & win the battle alone. His companions were left with those who had been disabled and weakened by his attacks. His name could strike terror into the hearts of the enemy leading them to flee and tremble at his approach. Even his companions were muted with wonder before him and recognized his possession of a spirit from God.
Mírzá Muhammad related how Mullá Husayn had disappeared after dealing that blow, and had been followed only by Qambar-'Alí. This servant related to them how he had been able to strike down in 1 stroke each who had attacked him. He went to Bárfurúsh despite the bullets raining on him to the Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá's house, circled the house 3 times, cried for him, as the instigator, to emerge and demonstrate the sincerity of his appeal, and reminded him of the requirement for the caller of a holy war to demonstrate his call by example.
Once his cry drowned their clamor, they cried out for peace. Just then his companions called out "Yá Sáhibu'z-Zamán!" at the top of their voices, striking dismay into their hearer's hearts. They were amazed to find him alive, unhurt on his horse, and they reverently approached & kissed his stirrups.
The peace was granted, and Mullá Husayn called upon the followers of the Prophet and shí'ahs of the imáms, asking them why they had arisen against them, and questioned whether they had ever repudiated the truth of Islám & whether they deserved the hospitality they had given. He commented that he had only received a scratch on his face despite their attack and that it was the will of God to establish the ascendancy of His Faith.
Mullá Husayn went to the caravanserai of Sabzih-Maydán, dismounted, waited for his companions & sent them to get bread & water on their arrival. They returned empty-handed unable to procure them from the baker or public square and indicated their resignation to and confidence in God's will.
Mullá Husayn ordered the gates to be closed, assembled them, begged them to remain gathered until sunset, and asked whether any were willing to give their life and sound the adhán.
(337) A youth responded and was killed by a bullet after saying "Alláh-u-Akbar." He
(338) called another to arise with renunciation to proceed, a youth responded and was killed after saying "I bear witness that Muhammad is the Apostle of God." He called a third youth who fell dead towards the end of the prayer saying "There is no God but God."
This led Mullá Husayn to open the caravanserai gate, arise with his friends, and repulse their attack. On horse, he gave orders to attack, and decimated their forces, a few who had escaped fled in panic, pleading for peace, bringing the Sabzih-Maydán from full occupation to desertion and dead bodies.
Such a victory prompted the nobles and chiefs to beseech Mullá Husayn on behalf of the people of Bárfurúsh to hear them out and restore peace. They contrasted their intentions with the welcome given them by the people, implicated the Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá' as the instigator and besought him to forget the past and leave for Ámul for his supposed protection.
Mullá Husayn hinted at their insincerity but consented, 'Abbás-Qulí Khán-i- Láríjání and Hájí Mustafá Khán arose and swore by the Qur'án to regard them as guests and ensure their safe passage the next day through Shír-Gáh with Khusraw-i-Qádí-Kalá'í & 100 horsemen. They stated that the malediction of God would be on them in both worlds if they allowed them any injury.
The men who had gone to get food for the men & horses came & Mullá Husayn had them break fast since they had not eaten since dawn nor even taken the tea offered them (due to the great number of notables & attendants there).
4 hours after sunset that night Mullá Husayn and friends dined with 'Abbás-Qulí Khán & Hájí Mustafá Khán.
That night, the Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá' summoned Khusraw-i-Qádí-Kalá'í & expressed his wish that the Bábís property should be seized & they executed. Khusraw questioned the appropriateness of them attacking people of Islám who insisted on completing the call to prayer, while they perpetrated such acts. The ulamá insisted his orders be obeyed, told him not to fear as he would take responsibility before God for the act & that they in authority knew best.
'Abbás-Qulí Khán called in Khusraw at sunrise, and called him to treat Mullá Husayn and companions well, deliver them safely, and refuse any rewards they might offer him. Khusraw pretended to obey, assured him they would not flinch in their vigilance or devotion to them, and promised to bring back a written testimony from him regarding their services.
When Khusraw was brought into his presence by the notables, Mullá Husayn commented that his actions would either be his reward or punishment and committed their will to God's.
Qambar-'Alí raised Mullá Husayn's call "Mount your steeds, O heroes of God!" & they all hurried to them. Some horsemen preceded them and Khusraw & Mullá Husayn rode abreast in the center. Behind were the other companions & to their right & left were the armed horsemen. 2 hours after sunrise they left by way of the forest (Khusraw's design).
Once in the forest, he signaled for attack. The men seized their property, killed some including the brother of Mullá Sádiq and captured the rest. Upon hearing this, Mullá Husayn stopped, protested his behavior, and refused to continue along with him. He had Qambar-'Alí spread out his prayer-mat & began to prepare his ablutions when Khusraw dismounted, had an attendant demand Mullá Husayn's sword and horse for their safe delivery, and was refused a reply. Mírzá Muhammad-Taqíy-i-Juvayníy-i-Sabzivárí, a literary & fearless man requested and was allowed to take the qalyán (water pipe) to Khusraw, and when kindling the fire for its use, he plunged a dagger from his robe into his vitals. The companions cried the call to the Lord of the Age and killed all but the attendant who had prepared the qalyán. He begged Mullá Husayn's assistance & was told to bring the bejeweled qalyán to Bárfurúsh & tell all to 'Abbás-Qulí Khán. He declared that nothing could wrest his sword & horse from him until they had accomplished their work.
They waited there until dawn, when after offering his prayer, Mullá Husayn gathered the friends, announced the immanence of reaching the destination, & ordered the few who had tried to take Khusraw's & his men's belongings to arrive there in utter detachment.
The guardian dreamt that the Siyyidu'sh-Shuhadá', the Imám Husayn had arrived there with 72 warriors and companions, engaged in most heroic battles, triumphed in every encounter, the Prophet Himself arrived one night. The guardian recognized Mullá Husayn as the hero, threw himself at and devoutly kissed his feet. Mullá Husayn invited him to be seated and heard him relate the story. Mullá Husayn assured him of the truth of the dream. This man later became a martyr there.
Mullá Husayn instructed the builder of the Bábíyyih, Mírzá Muhammad-Báqir how to construct the fort. Later that day, horsemen emerged from the forest to attack them.
They stated that they wished to avenge Khusraw's death and kill them all. The companions arose in self-defence, raised the call, and repulsed them with their cry even as they had appeared. Mírzá Muhammad-Taqíy-i-Juvayní had, at his own request, assumed command this time.
From fear of their return, they pursued them to what they thought was their village, inducing the men to flee at their sight. The mother of the village owner (Nazar Khán) was accidentally killed in the confused dark night, and upon the women's protest of their lack of connection to Qádí-Kalá, their chief desisted and discovered to his distress the mistaken identity. He apologised sincerely. When Nazar Khán heard his sincerity, he emerged from hiding, invited him in despite his sorrow, requested to meet Mullá Husayn and inquired into the Cause.
They visited Mullá Husayn at dawn while he was leading congregational prayer. His rapture won Nazar Khán over to join them and repeat the prayers. Afterwards, Mullá Husayn touchingly sympathized with his loss, expressed their intentions to protect lives, related how they came there, and again assured him. Hazar Khán, however, replied that he wished he had 100 sons to offer to the Lord of the Age, pledged his loyalty, and returned to this village to bring them needed provisions.
Mullá Husayn had everyone work toward the fort's completion. They were constantly disturbed by the neighboring villages instigated by the Sa'ídu'l- 'Ulamá but they withstood their attacks, completed the construction, and made preparations for its eventual siege.
Shaykh Abú-Turáb soon came with news of Bahá'u'lláh's arrival at Nazar Khán's village, told them of His command to him to inform them that they were to be His guests that night, and He would join them that afternoon.
He had them immediately prepare for His reception & he himself even swept & sprinkled the approaches to the shrine with water. Upon His approach with Nazar Khán, he rushed to embrace Him and brought Him to be received though none recognized Him at the time despite his evident joy at their meeting. Bahá'u'lláh bade them be seated & they felt the charm of His words.
Bahá'u'lláh inspected and expressed satisfaction at their work and indicated the necessity of Quddús' presence. He had Mullá Husayn despatch Mullá Mihdíy-Khu'í with 6 to Sárí, and demand Mírzá Muhammad-Taqí deliver Quddús assuring him that the fear of God will prompt him to release him.
He stated His intent to visit again, described how he was chosen to be host's vanguard, assured him of complete and certain victory, and returned to the village with Nazar Khán & Shaykh Abú-Turáb left to Núr then Tihrán.
Mullá Husayn sent the men & obtained his release. Mírzá Muhammad Taqí told his messengers that he had only considered him an honored guest and was free to leave.
Mullá Husayn urged the friends to show Quddús such reverence as they would to the Báb, while considering himself as only Quddús' lowly servant, even to obey him were he to command the taking of Mullá Husayn's life. He urged them to not intrude on him, obey his will, and refrain from kissing his hands or feet (as he dislikes such evidences of reverent affection). He urged that his glory must be recognized by even the lowliest of them and warned of the punishment awaiting those who would disobey in letter or spirit.
Quddús sought to win him over to the Faith with his gentle language & humour. Despite his later cruel behavior and extermination of the fort's defenders, Mírzá Muhammad-Taqí felt withheld from disrespecting Quddús on his stay. He even prevented & rebuked the Sárí inhabitants for intended to harm him.
Quddús immanent arrival regenerated their courage, including Mullá Husayn who irrepressibly jumped up with 100 to meet him. He lit 2 candles in the hand of each, and had them go to meet Quddús.They instantly recognized him in the forest, paid tribute to their allegiance, and followed him on foot with Quddús riding along as a star with its satellites. They broke out a hymn of glorification, Mullá Husayn raised the refrain, they responded, and the forest echoed with their acclamations.
Upon arrival, Quddús leaned against the shrine and said "The Baqíyyatu'lláh will be best for you if ye are of those who believe." from the Qur'án, fulfilling the tradition that foretold what the Mihdí would say to His 313 followers.
He related how Quddús then mentioned Bahá'u'lláh and asked about Him and discovered His intention to return, God willing before Muharram.
Quddús later had Mullá Husayn recite some homilies, the first for the Báb, the 2nd for Bahá'u'lláh, the 3rd referring to Táhirih. The friends were unsure of the reference to Bahá'u'lláh & he approached him several times for its meaning, and though first reluctant, Quddús illuminated them with his explanation & heightened their awe.
He related how Mullá Husayn circled the shrine where Quddús slept, recited the verse they had recited at Quddús arrival, and whispered to Mullá Mírzá Muhammad during his devotions to banish his perplexities and arise for martyrdom as His secret would be revealed in the year '80 (1863).
(354) Quddús had Mullá Husayn count the companions. He had entered the fort to tell him the total when a youth came in from Bárfurúsh seizing his garment and begging to be allowed to be martyred in the Beloved's path. This was granted, and Quddús remarked that the Prophet's prophecies regarding the promised One had to come true in order to fulfill the truth in the eyes of the divines in order for the people to recognize the truth through them.
(355) Quddús called Mullá Husayn and the most distinguished among them to chant the Báb's writings. He would sit in the Maydán (the square adjoining the fort), listening intently and occasionally commenting. He would continue his devotions despite the most fervid attacks of the enemy.
He maintained his labors unruffled despite the bullets raining on them exclaiming "My soul is wedded to Thy mention!" and "Remembrance of Thee is the stay and solace of my life! I glory in that I was the first to suffer ignominiously for Thy sake in Shíráz. I long to be the first to suffer in Thy path a death that shall be worthy of Thy Cause."
He had his 'Iráqí companions chant the Qur'án and would unfold its meaning. On one verse regarding tests, Quddús indicated its reference to Job and applicability to them, warning that only those with constancy and patience could survive their future tests.
After such demonstrations and Quddús' writings and behavior dispelled the thoughts that Mullá Husayn was only showing deference for the need of the moment. Quddús continued here his Súrih of Qul Huva'lláhu'l-Ahad he began at Mírzá Muhammad-Taqí's request totaling again a commentary 3 times as long as the Qur'án. He continued despite the attacks of the enemies & the amount he wrote won their wonder and respect for his leadership. Mullá Husayn brought this commentary to them each day to which he paid tribute.
The fort's completion animated their zeal and excited the village people's curiosity to the extent that many tried to be admitted; however, once 313 were there, Quddús allowed none more in.
The praise of the fort by its visitors inflamed the Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá' to jealousy. A few disobeyed his orders and lent them assistanceĞarriving just after they felt the direst need for basic necessities.
The manner in which they continually were relieved prompted him to appeal to the new Sháh claiming that he had converted the villagers and built a fort to run a campaign against him. He sought to persuade him that their extermination would be a befitting beginning to his career and that were he to ignore them, they would conquer Persia.
The Sháh delegated this to army officers of Mázindarán calling for whatever was necessary to eradicate them. Hájí Mustafá Khán-i-Turkamán persuaded the Sháh that they could overcome the untrained and frail-bodied students he had seen with a small segment of their army, and obtained his consent to call upon his brother, 'Abdu'lláh Khán-i-Turkamán to crush them in 2 days.
The Sháh ordered 'Abdu'lláh Khán to recruit for this & gave him a royal badge indicating his confidence. He was moved to raise and army of 12,000 (mostly Usanlú, Afghán, and Kúdár), stationed them in Afrá & determined to intercept their daily bread then water.
The army ordered to fire on anyone leaving. Quddús forbade anyone to get water. Rasúl-i-Bahnimírí complained that their water might be intercepted. Quddús who was at sunset viewing the army with Mullá Husayn from the fort terrace, acknowledged their distress and indicated that, God willing, a downpour of rain would overtake their opponents, and a heavy snowfall to aid them in repulsing them. This downpour ruined much of their ammunition, gave the friends sufficient water. After the snowfall, Quddús paced by the gate and remarked to Rasúl-i-Bahnimírí in praise of God for answering their prayer in refreshing the friends and bringing desolation to their enemies.
(361) As the army prepared to attack despite its losses, Quddús rode out with Mullá
(362) Husayn and 3 others 2 hours after sunrise with the rest following on foot, with their cry ringing out and dispersing the affrighted enemy waiting in ambush, leaving their possessions. In 45 minutes, Quddús and Mullá Husayn had defeated the rest. 'Abdu'lláh Khán-i-Turkamán, 2 officers (Habíbu'lláh Khán- i-Afghán & Núru'lláh Khán-i-Afghán) and 430 men died.
Quddús returned to the fort as Mullá Husayn finished their work. Siyyid 'Abdu'l- 'Azím-i-Khu'í called him back on behalf of Quddús. Quddús explained that they need not punish them further, that their intent was only to protect themselves to be able to work for man's regeneration and not harm anyone, & their achievement was already sufficient proof of God's power. No Bábís were killed and only Qulí (who rode in front of Quddús) had been badly wounded. They were ordered to take nothing besides swords & horses.
Quddús had them dig a moat around the fort, taking 19 days of labor, and giving them enjoyment to work day and night to complete the work with which they were entrusted.
Prince Mihdí-Qulí Mírzá came with a numerous army and camped at Shír-Gáh.
When he transferred headquarters to Vás-Kas, he sent a message to Mullá Husayn informing him of his command from the Sháh and enquiring into his purpose.
Mullá Husayn disclaimed any intention of subverting the monarchy, that the Cause deals largely with the Qá'im & ecclesiastic order & that they could deduce proofs for its truth. The messenger was moved to tears by his sincerity and upon his asking what they were to do, he said the prince should direct the 'ulamás of Sárí and Bárfurúsh to gather to ascertain his truth, using the Qur'án as the basis of argument, and allowing the prince to judge. The messenger promised that they would be gathered in 3 days.
3 days later, the prince attacked with 3 infantry regiments and several cavalry, gathering them in a spot overlooking the area, and opened fire.
Quddús called "Mount your steeds, O heroes of God!" before daybreak, ordered the gate to be opened, and Mullá Husayn and 212 others ran to their horses following Quddús to Vás-Kas, undaunted by the forces or snow and mud on the road, they charged to his stronghold in the dark.
The prince ordered fire, but Mullá Husayn was not stopped and pursued him into his private quarters. The prince escaped through a back window & panicked. His host fled despite their numbers and resources.
2 or 3 other princes were killed in this sortie. They disdained to take coffers of gold & silver they found. They only brought a gunpowder pot & the prince's favorite sword as a sign of their victory to Mullá Husayn. He had replaced his sword which had taken a bullet with Quddús' and used it on the enemy.
They opened the prison gate of the enemy & heard Mullá Yúsuf-i-Ardibílí who interceded for his fellow-prisoners release.
That morning Mullá Husayn gathered the friends around Quddús outside of Vás-Kas, waiting on horse expecting a renewed attack. They were suddenly rushed, responded with their cry, and faced them. Mullá Husayn went one way, Quddús and the others another.
Those after Mullá Husayn rejoined those against Quddús' and discharged 1000 bullets against them, one of which knocked out several of Quddús' teeth and injured his tongue and throat. Mullá Husayn came to their rescue, leaving his horse to Qambar-'Alí's care, & ran with fear & dismay to his bleeding chief.
He was about to beat himself upon the head when Quddús had him stop. He obeyed, begged for his sword, unsheathed it, scattered the masses around him, followed by 110 disciples, wielding also the prince's sword, and routed them all in under 30 minutes.
They were able to return to the fort though with pain and sorrow. Quddús comforted them, encouraging them to submit to God's will. calling them to remain steadfast, indicated the parallel of the stone breaking the Prophet's teeth with his by the bullet, indicated his own joy, and requested them not to disturb it by their sorrow.
That same month, Bahá'u'lláh set out from Núr to visit them with Hájí Mírzá Jáníy-i-Káshání, Mullá Báqir-i-Tabrízí, one of the Letters & Mírzá Yahyá and insisted on not stopping as orders had been given by 'Abdu'lláh Khán not to assist them and guards were posted for this. The friends insisted on stopping, they fell asleep while He reluctantly consented and remained awake. The enemies' secret emissaries informed the neighborhood guards of their arrival & the guards ordered the seizure of their possessions & indicated their orders to conduct them to the governor in Ámul.
Bahá'u'lláh calmly remarked that the matter had been misrepresented, that their purpose had been misconstrued, and that they should act in a manner which would not lead to regret. He conducted them with dignity to Ámul and called His companions (riding a distance from the guards) to throw whatever manuscripts they had into the water.
A message had been sent ahead to the acting governor (the governor had been appointed to join the prince went with his body-guard). He called the 'ulamás and leading siyyids to meet them, was surprised to see Bahá'u'lláh, regretted his orders & pretended to reprimand Him. Bahá'u'lláh responded that they were innocent and called on them to act in such a way as not to cause regret. The acting governor asked the 'ulamás to present any questions to Him. He returned convincing replies. They found a manuscript from one of His companions, read it thinking it the writings of the Báb, and criticized them for its violation of orthography. Bahá'u'lláh responded that the words were not of the Báb but of the Imám 'Alí, silencing the mujtahid.
A siyyid angrily indicated that Bahá'u'lláh must be a Bábí and should be put to death as a sworn enemy of the State and Islám. He was seconded by other siyyids, calling on the governor to comply.
Fearful of losing his position, he had his attendants prepare rods to punish them & indicated they would be kept in prison until the governor returned, then sent to Tihrán for their punishment.
Mullá Báqir was to receive the first bastinado, claiming to be only His groom. Bahá'u'lláh intervened for him, for Hájí Mírzá Jání who He said was a mere tradesman and His guest, and for Mírzá Yahyá who He said was His attendant. He said that if they insisted on punishing, He should be their Victim. The acting governor was reluctantly compelled to comply.
Nabíl relates how the Báb had suffered similarly in Tabríz 5 months before in Tabríz & compares some of Their imprisonments and sufferings, indicated the Báb's preceded Bahá'u'lláh's in most cases, as a ransom to His Beloved, though Bahá'u'lláh did not wish for the Báb to be the sole Sufferer. This love, he describes could not be explored if every tree were a pen, all the seas ink, and the heavens parchment.
Bahá'u'lláh was confined with the friends in a room of the masjid. The acting governor sought to deliver Bahá'u'lláh through a passage to their room into his home. He was bringing Bahá'u'lláh himself when a siyyid sprang forward with a club to hit Him. The acting governor interposed, adjured him by the Prophet to stop & was criticized for releasing a sworn enemy of the Faith. A crowd gathered & added abuse though the governor's attendants were able to conduct Him safely and with surprising courage & presence of mind.
The other prisoners were taken to the government seat & saved, the governor profusely apologized, stated that God alone had delivered Him & that he would have perished were it not for the vow he made to risk his life for Him. He complained of the siyyids' behavior, served Him with kindness & devotion & stated he did not see Him as a prisoner but rather as being protected.
Bahá'u'lláh referred to His noble treatment despite the fear of his host that the governor (related to 'Abbás-Qulí Khán-i-Láríjání) might return. Bahá'u'lláh attempted to assure him that the same God who had delivered them from the mischief-makers into his hospitable care, is able to change the governor's heart to treat them as well.
The real governor returned to Ámul one night, with His companions expecting a renewed attack. He rebuked those who had denounced them, however. He questioned how such a welcome & call for execution could be justified. He called them to go to Shaykh Tabarsí if they were faithful to Islám.
The governor had changed his opinion by the heroism of the fort's defenders. His wrath was disarmed & his pride chastened. He apologized to Bahá'u'lláh for their behavior, serving Him devotedly despite his rank, paid tribute to Mullá Husayn's courage, skill, and nobility, and arranged for Bahá'u'lláh and friends' departure to Tihrán.
Bahá'u'lláh, despite His intention to throw in His lot with them, was prevented by Providence and preserved to complete His work. Nabíl here relates His glorious efforts and achievements, and indicates how He had been the Mover of the forces destined to reshape their land, steered their course, harmonised their action, and consummated them in His Cause.
The Declaration of the Báb's Mission
(Condensed Summary of Chapter 19)
A. Mírzá Taqí Khán blamed the prince for not decimating the weak students, but the prince showed him the musket and induced him to determine to annihilate them (Though this only worked through treachery & swearing falsely on the Qur'án.) Many including poets diffused this news. A long-time friend of his related how Mullá Husayn had no training with swords and had difficulty writing, let alone wielding a weapon.III. They were constantly disturbed by villagers instigated by the Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá' but withstood them, and completed the fort. Upon its completion, Bahá'u'lláh visited the fort, was reverently and joyously received by Mullá Husayn (though none else truly recognized Him then) approved its construction, called for a delegation to free Quddús, assured them of his deliverance, indicated His future return, assured them of victory, and left for Núr and Tihrán.
B. Mullá Husayn rushed after this to the Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá's house, killing those who opposed him on the way with 1 stroke, circled the house, and cried for the instigator to demonstrate his words in action. His cry induced the enemy to call for peace. His companions made the cry, scaring the enemy, were amazed to find him alive, and approached him with reverence and kissed his stirrups. He questioned the basis of the enemy's attack on them & claimed that their victory was only through God's will.
C. They returned empty-handed to the caravanserai, resigned to God's will. Mullá Husayn successively called 3 youth to sound the call to prayer, and each was shot & killed by the enemy as they recited a part of it. Mullá Husayn then had them leave the fort and repulse the enemy, killing all besides those who called for peace. The nobles of the villages interceded and secured a tentative peace with Mullá Husayn. They were promised a safe passage through the forest by Khusraw. The Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá', however, induced the head guard to confiscate their possessions and kill them, accepting responsibility for his actions. Despite Mullá Husayn's warning to Khusraw, he proceeded to attack his friends (riding behind him). Mullá Husayn refused to drop his weapon & continued with his devotions.
D. Mírzá Muhammad-Taqíy-i-Juvayníy-i-Sabzivárí asked an attendant to be able to take Khusraw's water pipe to him personally, then stabbed him in his gut. The companions killed all but the attendant who, in wishing to serve them, was told to return to the notables bringing this water pipe and that nothing could disarm him until his purpose was achieved.
E. They proceeded to the shrine of Shaykh Tabarsí without taking, per Mullá Husayn's orders, any of Khusraw's men's possessions they left behind. The guardian of the fort eagerly joined them after he had dreamt of their arrival, the heroic battles they were to fight, and that the Prophet Himself was to visit the shrine. As they began to build a fort there, they were attacked by the horsemen seeking revenge for Khusraw's death. They repelled these horsemen and at the command of Mírzá Muhammad-Taqíy-i-Juvayní (approved by Mullá Husayn), they pursued them into the forest. In what turned out to be the wrong village, they attacked and, in the dark, confused night, accidentally killed the village owner's mother. The village owner, upon hearing the sincere apologies of the commander, emerged from hiding, learned of the Cause, and sought to find out more, despite his loss. On hearing Mullá Husayn's recitation of the congregational prayer and Mullá Husayn's comforting words, he became enamored of the Faith and joined the companions.
A. Quddús had been confined 95 days, though his gentleness and prodigious writings impressed his host to the extent that he allowed him to leave when his friends arrived although this host later cruelly killed the fort's inhabitiants. Mullá Husayn prepared the friends to receive him befittingly and enjoined them to respect him infinitely more than they did himself. They met him on foot holding 2 candles lit by Mullá Husayn in each hand, surrounding him (he was on horse), and reciting hymns that echoed in the forest as they approached the shrine.
B. Upon arrival, Quddús leaned against the shrine and said "The Baqíyyatu'lláh will be best for you if ye are of those who believe." from the Qur'án, fulfilling the tradition that foretold what the Mihdí would say to His 313 followers, then implying Bahá'u'lláh was the one by asking of Him. Mullá Husayn enjoined Mullá Mírzá Muhammad to arise for martyrdom, cease seeking tounravel the mystery of Quddús references to Bahá'u'lláh as they would become clear in the year '80 (1863). Quddús had the number of followers counted, when a youth burst in begging to join them, thereby fulfilling the prophecy of 313, for the truth to be established to the divines.
C. Quddús would listen to verses from the Qur'án and the Báb read to them & comment on their meaning, and proceed calmly with his devotions despite the attacks of the enemy. His extremely prodigious and insightful writings and behavior won the esteem of Mullá Husayn's companions.
D. Upon the fort's completion, the friends gained zeal and villagers even wished to join them, though they were not allowed after 313 had entered. As the villagers provided for their basic needs just when hope seemed lost and the fort was being praised by the villagers, the Sa'ídu'l-'Ulamá' was enraged and appealed to the Sháh claiming that they intended to subvert his rule and that they would eventually succeed, if they weren't crushed. The Sháh sent some of his army to crush them. 'Abdu'lláh Khán was called on, and he raised an army of 12,000 for this.
E. Upon complaints that they could not leave and their water supply was to be taken over, Quddús prayed for a rain storm & snowfall to act in their favor. These occured and Quddús praised God as the rain had ruined much of the enemy's ammunition, and gave them their needed water while the snow had hampered the enemy. As the enemy prepared its attack, Quddús rode out with Mullá Husayn, 3 others, and the rest on foot, and, with their cries, routed the enemy who left their belongings. In 45 minutes, they had killed the chief officer, 2 other officers, and 430 other men. As Mullá Husayn pursued them, Quddús called him back to the fort as their purpose had been achieved, and had them begin construction of a moat. This lasted 19 days and the men joyfully worked for its completion.
F. Prince Mihdí-Qulí Mírzá arrived in a neighboring village, informed Mullá Husayn of his orders & inquired into his purpose. Mullá Husayn explained his intention not to subvert the monarchy, and expressed a willingness to demonstrate its truth among the 'ulamá subject to the prince's judgement. Though the messenger was moved by his sincerity and promised his wish would be fulfilled, the prince instead attacked them.
G. Quddús called "Mount your steeds, O heroes of God!" before daybreak as they charged, despite the mud and snow on the roads and bullets upon them, all the way to prince's private apartments. Despite their numbers and resources, the prince and his army fled. The companions did not take any of the gold & silver coffers they found, but only brought back the prince's sword and a pot of gunpowder. Mullá Husayn was using Quddús' sword as his had been shot with a bullet. Mullá Husayn gathered the friends around Quddús when they were attacked and divided. The group pursuing Mullá Husayn rejoined to attack Quddús, raining 1000 bullets upon him, and leading one to strike out some of his teeth and injure his tongue and throat. Mullá Husayn ran to his care, was assured by Quddús, and obeyed him by taking the prince's and Quddús' sword and routed the enemy. Upon their return to the fort, Quddús assured them amidst their sorrow of God's will (as the Prophet had lost teeth by a stone), that they should remain steadfast & not stain his gratitude & joy by their sorrow.
A. The acting governor sought to deliver Bahá'u'lláh Himself into his home but was in the process threatened by an angry siyyid with a club and a crowd that gathered. The governor's attendants were surprisingly able to adeptly usher Him away from the scene, and the governor himself lavished his devotion on Bahá'u'lláh as He stayed there, though he would not let Bahá'u'lláh leave for fear of His safety upon the real governor's return, despite Bahá'u'lláh's assurance of their Divine protection. Once the governor did return, he had become impressed by the fortitude of the Bábí defenders, criticized the reception accorded Bahá'u'lláh, hinted at their hypocrisy and lack of faith.
B. Nabíl related here how Bahá'u'lláh had been saved despite His intention to join the defenders of the fort to be able to consummate His work and steer the course of His Cause.
Cross-References for Chapter 19