Bahai WritingsQUESTION: What are the major Bahai writings?
The Bahai writingshave been authored by individuals considered to be Manifestations of God. Since God is unknowable, he is comprehended by mankind or revealed to man through these individuals. As such, their writings are considered divine revelations. Followers of Bahai are encouraged to read these writings, study them, and recite their verses. The Bahai believe the practice of meditating on these divine writings has a life-changing effect on the followers. Though imperceptible, the change towards greater spirituality and joy gradually takes place in the lives of those who embrace the Bahai writings.
The Báb is the title assumed by Sayyid Alí-Muhammad Shirazí, the prophet founder of the Bábí religion. He is considered by the Bahais to be His Holiness the Most Exalted Lord (Hadrat-i-rabb-i-ala). Thus the writings of the Báb are extremely important to the Bahais. The first work of his mission was known as Qayyúmul-asmá. It is considered the Quran of the Bábís. In this writing the Báb defends his claim as the supreme authority. He claims his writings were inspired by God as the other Manifestations such as Muhammad and the other prophets had claimed. Generally, it is seen as a reworking of the Quran with much of the theme and style similar. The Báb had many other writings.
Bahai Writings The Authors
The Bahaullah also had numerous writings read widely by members of the Bahais. The Bahaullah penned many short letters to the Bahais, but his works also consisted of religious doctrine, his own claims to divinity, Bahai laws, social and moral teaching, prayers, poetry, and accounts of his religious experiences through visions. Two well-known tablets recount suffering, doctrine, and various predictions.
Abdul Baha is seen as the successor to Bahaullah, his father, and thus Abdul Baha was considered the authoritative interpreter of many of his fathers writings. These writings form the core of the canon of the Bahai sacred literature. Several books and no less than 27,000 of his letters are in existence. Even during his fathers lifetime Abdul Baha had written many important works, three of which include: Secret of Divine Civilization, a treatise on the modernization of Iran; Travelers Narrative, a short history of the Bábí and the Bahai religion; and lastly a commentary on, I Was a Hidden Treasure. Later important works of his included, Tablet of One Thousand Verses, and Treatise on Politics.
Shogi Effendi Rabbání was successor to Abdul Baha. In addition to the many letters he wrote he was well known for a book. Actually written in English, God Passes is an interpretive history of the first century of Bábí-Bahai history. Shogi Effendi Rabbání compiled other Bahai histories, statistics, and maps.
Other individuals considered Manifestations of God such as Muhammad and Moses also wrote works that were embraced by the Bahais.
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