Portal:Bahá'í Faith

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Bahá'í Faith Portal

The Shrine of the Báb at the Bahá'í World Centre, in Haifa, Israel

The Bahá'í Faith is an emerging global religion founded by Bahá'u'lláh, a nineteenth-century Iranian exile. "Bahá'í" is either an adjective referring to this religion, or the term for a follower of Bahá'u'lláh.

Bahá'í theology speaks of three interlocking unities: the oneness of God (monotheism); the oneness of his prophets or messengers; and the oneness of humanity (equality, globalism). These three principles have a profound impact on the theological and social teachings of this religion.

Religion is seen as a progressively unfolding process of education, by God, through his messengers, to a constantly evolving human family. Bahá'u'lláh is seen as the most recent, pivotal, but not final of God's messengers. He announced that his major purpose is to lay the spiritual foundations for a new global civilization of peace and harmony, which Bahá'ís expect to gradually arise.

Selected article

Bahá'í House of Worship in the United States

There are currently seven Bahá'í Houses of Worship around the world, although Bahá'í communities own many properties where they plan for Houses of Worship to be constructed as the Bahá'í community grows and develops.

The name used in the Bahá'í writings for Houses of Worship is Mashriqu'l-Adhkár (Dawning-place of the Remembrance of God). All Bahá'í temples share certain architectural elements, only two of which are specified by Bahá'í scripture, that they are nine-sided and surmounted by domes.

Bahá'í Houses of Worship are open to people of all faiths - or of no particular faith. Services focus solely on the worship of God. There are no collections and no sermons. Only the Word of God is uttered within the Temple, with readings from all the Holy Writings of the earth. The only instrument used is the human voice, and the choir in any Bahá'í House of Worship sings without instrumental accompaniment. No sermons or lectures are permitted inside the House of Worship. As the Bahá'í Faith has no priesthood, ordinary members of the community - men and women, adults and children - read the texts.

Did you know?

..that the Bahá'í Faith speaks of three core assertions, sometimes termed the "three onenesses": the unity of God, the unity of religion, and the unity of mankind?

In addition to these three onenesses the following principles are frequently listed as a quick summary of the Bahá'í teachings.

Selected scripture

The Kalimat-i-Maknunih or Hidden Words were written by Bahá'u'lláh in the form of a collection of short utterances, 71 in Arabic and 82 in Persian, in which Bahá'u'lláh claims to have taken the basic essence of certain spiritual truths and written them in brief form. Here is an excerpt from the book:

O SON OF SPIRIT!
My first counsel is this: Possess a pure, kindly and radiant heart, that thine may be a sovereignty ancient, imperishable and everlasting.
(Bahá'u'lláh, The Arabic Hidden Words)
O SON OF BEING!
Love Me, that I may love thee. If thou lovest Me not, My love can in no wise reach thee. Know this, O servant.
(Bahá'u'lláh, The Arabic Hidden Words)
O SON OF DUST!
Verily I say unto thee: Of all men the most negligent is he that disputeth idly and seeketh to advance himself over his brother. Say, O brethren! Let deeds, not words, be your adorning.
(Bahá'u'lláh, The Persian Hidden Words)

Selected picture

A stylized nine pointed star, with the calligraphy of the Greatest Name in the centre.

The most commonly used Bahá'í symbol is the 9 pointed star. The significance of the number "nine" comes from several sources. One of the sacred languages of the Bahá'í holy texts is Arabic, whose alphabet can be used to represent numbers, attaching a numerical value to words. The numerical value of Bahá’ is 9.

The Greatest Name, or more fully, the calligraphy of the Greatest Name of God, is another Bahá'í symbol. It is an Arabic calligraphic rendering of "Yá Bahá'ul 'Abhá" (يا بهاء الأبهى usually translated as "O Glory of the Most Glorious!"). This rendering was originally drawn by the eminent early Bahá'í calligrapher Mishkin Qalam, and later adopted by Bahá'ís everywhere.

Wikiprojects

Selected Religious Figure

Mírzá Husayn-`Alí (Persian: میرزا حسینعلی‎) (b: 1817 - d: 1892), who later took the title of Bahá'u'lláh (Arabic: بهاءالله‎ "Glory of God") was the founder-prophet of the Bahá'í Faith.

He claimed to fulfill the Bábí prophecy of "He whom God shall make manifest", but in a broader sense he also claimed to be the "supreme Manifestation of God" referring to the fulfillment of the eschatological expectations of a prophetic cycle beginning with Adam, and including Abrahamic religions, as well as Zoroastrianism, the great Dharmic religions, and others. Bahá'ís see Bahá'u'lláh as the initiator of a new religion, as Jesus or Muhammad — but also the initiator of a new cycle, like that attributed to Adam.

During his lifetime, Bahá'u'lláh left a large volume of writings. The Kitáb-i-Aqdas, and the Book of Certitude are recognized as primary Bahá'í theological works, and the Hidden Words and the Seven Valleys as primary mystical treatises.

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