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|1897 (In the year)
||The passing of Hand of the Cause of God Shaykh Muhammad-Ridáy-i-Yazdí (Mullá Ridá) while incarcerated in the Síyáh-Cháh.
He was born in Muhammad-Ábád in the province of Yazd into a well-known family in about 1814. He was provided a good education and he became a divine known for his piety, eloquence and courage.
Mullá Ridá became a follower of the Báb in the early days of the Revelation. He recognized Bahá'u'lláh as the Promised One of the Bayan some time after 1855 upon reading Qasídiy-i-Varqá'íyyih, "Ode of the Dove". (Bahá'u'lláh had composed this ode while still in Sulaymáníyyih.)
He was a fearless teacher who was outspoken and often suffered imprisonment and torture. "Other than seventeen-year-old Badí, no one has surpassed Mullá Ridá's unusual power of endurance. The rare combination of endurance, eloquence, courage and humour made him that unique hero who illuminated the pages of the history of the Bahá'í Faith." [Extract from a Persian book called Masabih-i-Hidayat, Volume I by Azizu'llah-i-Sulaymani]
In one story of his courage in teaching and his endurance in withstanding abuse, he was found to be picking his teeth while being bastinadoed and, in another, while a elderly man he withstood a brutal flogging on his bare back in the prison yard. A witness to this flogging, Ghulám-Ridá Khán, a notable of Tehran who happened to be imprisoned at the same time, became a believer upon seeing his steadfastness under the lashing. [RoB1p84-91, EB89-111, LoF21-27]
'Abdu'l-Bahá referred to a few of the believers posthumously as being Hands of the Cause (see MF5 and BW14p446) Adib Taherzadeh points out that "since there are one or two others by the same name (Shaykh-Ridáy-i-Yazdí) it is not possible to identify him. However, some believe strongly that he is Mullá Muhammad-i-Ridáy-i-Muhammmad-Ábádí. [RoB4p186n]
||Muhammadabad; Yazd; Tihran; Iran
||Mulla Rida (Shaykh Muhammad-Riday-i-Yazdi); Hands referred to as such by Abdul-Baha; In Memoriam; Hands of the Cause; Hands of the Cause, Births and deaths; Births and deaths; Hands of the Cause, Activities; Siyah Chal (Black Pit); Bahaullah, Writings of
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