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TAGS: Abul-Qasim Faizi; Haji Mirza Haydar-Ali; Humor; Persecution; Teaching
LOCATIONS: Akka; Egypt; Haifa; Iran (documents); Sudan; Turkey
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Anecdotes and history, a personal glimpse of the Middle East in the 19th century, as told by a follower of Bahá'u'lláh and companion of Abdu'l-Bahá.
Also available as a Word document: haydar-ali_stories_delight_hearts.docx.

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Stories from The Delight of Hearts:
The Memoirs of Hájí Mírzá Haydar-'Alí

by Haji Mirza Haydar-Ali

translated by Abu'l-Qasim Faizi
Los Angeles: Kalimat Press, 1980
About: The Delight of Hearts has been widely read and enjoyed in Persian since its publication in Bombay in 1913. Now, through A. Q. Faizis abridged translation, Western readers can become acquainted with the remarkable man who came to be known as the Angel of Carmel.

Haji Mirza Haydar-Ali grew up in a country in religious turmoil. The Shiih Muslim clergy of Iran and the Qajar dynasty had vowed to exterminate the Faith and followers of Siyyid Ali Muhammad, the Bab, Who in 1844 had declared Himself to be the Gate to the Promised One, Whose appearance was imminent.

His curiosity aroused by the barbaric persecution he witnessed around him, Haydar-Ali read the Babs Writings and became a believer. This marked the beginning of a lifetime odyssey which would take him through the towns and villages of Iran; to Egypt and the Sudan, where he would be imprisoned for his beliefs; and to Turkey and the Holy Land, where he would attain the presence of Bahaullah, the Promised One Whose coming the Bab had foretold.

Toward the end of his life, in Haifa, the Haji set down his recollections. His account of the tribulations he suffered at the hands of fanatical mullas and their followers affords a vivd personal glimpse of the Middle East in the nineteenth century. Through these vignettes of friends and enemies, of martyrs and malefactors, emerges a memorable portrait of Haydar-Ali himself. Throughout his sufferings, he maintained his steadfast loyalty and his sense of humor. When faced with imprisonment, treachery, or the threat of death, he never wavered for an instant in his dedication to the Covenant he had embraced.

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