Talk:Bahá'í Faith

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Exile and inprisonment[edit]

The article said (clumsily) that "Bahá'u'lláh was exiled for his teachings, from Persia to the Ottoman Empire, and died while officially being a prisoner". I've since changed it slightly. What it doesn't say is what kind of relationship was there between the two states. Firstly, you can't just ban someone to somebody's country without consent from that country. Secondly, it was not merely a question of the Ottomans accepting him, but obviously some arrangement was reached, otherwise, why would they too keep him prisoner? Why accept him in the first place, if only to keep him prisoner? Rui ''Gabriel'' Correia (talk) 21:44, 12 February 2014 (UTC)

here there is mention of "Complicity between the Persian and Ottoman rulers". Rui ''Gabriel'' Correia (talk) 21:51, 12 February 2014 (UTC)
We need a better source for such a discussion - see wikipedia:reliable source. --Smkolins (talk) 00:23, 13 February 2014 (UTC)

Smkolins, I wasn't suggesting it as a source - as I said it makes mention of "complicity between the Persian and Ottoman rulers". That is as something to on from to establish why another country would receive him and keep him prisoner. Rui ''Gabriel'' Correia (talk) 02:26, 13 February 2014 (UTC)

This is an interesting question and does require a more sophisticated explanation. My personal understanding is that when Baha'u'llah was released from prison from Iran, to Baghdad that he was no longer anyone's prisoner, but more like a "person of interest". He did go off by himself for two years to live in a cave, surely no one's prisoner. When Baha'u'llah was called to Istanbul, a military unit accompanied him and he was assigned housing, but after being sent to Andrianople He was also not necessarily a prisoner. It was only after that, when the whole family was taken into custody and put aboard ship to go to Akka that you would say he was officially a prisoner under armed guard and when He arrived in Acre, put into a prison cell by the Ottomans. I think the problem is how to tell this part of the story in a way that does not require an entire page: The Political Status of Baha'u'llah while in custody of Iranian Authorities and Ottoman Authorities.I'm Nonpartisan 03:15, 1 April 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by I'm nonpartisan (talkcontribs)

Bernard Lewis[edit]

Is it possible that parts of this article could be rewritten with reference to the writings of Bernard Lewis removed? I don't really know much about the Bahai religion and when I came here to learn about it I was very discouraged from learning more because of the references to Bernard Lewis. Lewis's work is considered racist by the important scholar Edward Said and his work has been criticized by Noam Chomsky as well. Compared to such anti-imperialist scholars like Chomsky and Said, the references to Lewis in this article on the Bahai faith make a non-believer and new comer like myself, suspicious that Bahai "scholars" are as unscrupulous as Bernard Lewis and like him, are apologists for anti-Semitism and those who are jealous of Islam. This an encyclopedia so lets try and get rid or references to these orientalist scholars like Bernard Lewis who make a newcomer like myself think the Bahai religion is more boring and know-nothing than it actually is. Teetotaler 9 March, 2014 — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:04, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

It's also an old citation from 1984 - I wouldn't mind loosing the whole "reactions" section. --Smkolins (talk) 19:38, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
The objection to Bernard Lewis seems to me to be quite insincere (sorry, but my powers of assumption of good faith don't stretch quite that far) and in any case highly partisan. None the less I do agree with Smolkins that the mention of Bernard Lewis' opinion has very marginal relevance - at best it is one person's opinion (speculation) of what might be a rationale for persecuting Baha'is - the reality is likely to be far more complicated. Really, speculation about what motives might drive people to commit crimes, as opposed to the description of the crimes themselves, belong (if anywhere) with the perpetrators, not an article about the victims. Lewis' remarks, as reported here, almost seem to imply that the Baha'is deserve to be persecuted for not being good Muslims! In any case I have deleted the sub-section concerned as patently unhelpful. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 15:23, 13 April 2014 (UTC)


I did some research about transliterations of "Bahá'í Faith". It seems User:Mamdu may have had a point changing Baha'iyyah to ad-Deenu-l Bahaa'i. Apparently the first is actually used primarily by those who do not grant the Baha'i Faith as a religion while the second specifically is used to denote it as a religion (think of it as the two words as in English "Baha'i" and "Faith"). Apparently the equivalent arabic would be البهائية vs الدين البهائي (not that I can read it but I can at least see there are two words vs one.) However I don't know if there is a specific special syntax of accent marks or other things that should be used. You can see the arabic/farsi uses but transliterations…. --Smkolins (talk) 19:28, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

My point was simply that something as long-standing as this needed discussion before it gets changed. I had no idea which of the two forms is most correct/appropriate for this context. On the surface (based on your explanation, Smkolins) I would favour the current version as being more "neutral" and "encyclopedic". This article is not (or should not be if it is) "promotion", however much Baha'i editors (including me) want to ensure that it is factual and fair. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 23:42, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
Agreed on talking about it before just changing it. However I don't see neutral coming out of it. Neither terminology is neutral in Arabic. However this isn't the arabic article. It is a question of the transliteration of the English. Baha'i Faith is its proper name in English and usually used in reference and therefore ad-Deenu-l Bahaa'i is the proper transliteration as a matter of grammar. I'm sure when it comes to the Arabic articles on the religion the thrust of reliable sources will have its say. But I'd like consensus so that a number of people understand what is being talked about. I'll note the "citation" is an examination of the word "Baha'i" itself and not "Baha'i Faith". This could be tripping over the facts of how the words are used in that it is pointing out more about pronunciation rather than the whole term. --Smkolins (talk) 10:18, 10 March 2014 (UTC)


i do believe this "Sacrifice They believe that human sacrifice is necessary for, salvation through god, and that they should only sacrifice women, because they are unclean because of their periods.And that they must burn them alive if they are on their period during the sacrifice..." is just a troll edit because i cant find any mention of this anywhere else can anyone find a source for this? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:16, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

It was vandalims, and it's been removed. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 21:12, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

Matter of Shame???[edit]

Is it a matter of shame that Abdu'l-Bahá and ‎Bahá'u'lláh pictures be put forward in wikipedia after all they both are among the most influential of the Bahai Faith... (talk) 20:46, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

No it is not shame. Read the section Bahá'u'lláh#Photographs_and_imagery and the comparative talk pages at Talk:Bahá'u'lláh/Archive_Picture you can get a feel for things. --Smkolins (talk) 00:23, 2 April 2014 (UTC)
It's a matter of following other encyclopedic conventions. In most publications about Baha'u'llah, it's the shrine of Baha'u'llah that is pictured, and not his picture, and Wikipedia follows those conventions. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 11:50, 2 April 2014 (UTC)
Frankly, Baha'is don't like brainwashed people to think "oh!, the Baha'i faith is related to the ME/Al-Qaeda" when they see this pic!
Again I refer readers to the actual text of articles about when and how Baha'is use the picture and the discussions about what concensus has reached about applying Wikipedian standards in this situation. Speculating about how people interprit the picture is rather entirely besides the point. --Smkolins (talk) 12:35, 12 April 2014 (UTC)

Respectfully, Baha'is "rules" are irrelevant in this discussion. Wikipedia is not bound by outside conventions!

You appear to misunderstand why I pointed out the article. I did not wish to imply "Baha'i rules" apply here. I was addressing the claim of "shame" as mentioned. It has nothing to do with shame. As to the talk page that is very about wikipedia conventions. --Smkolins (talk) 12:47, 13 April 2014 (UTC)
I was responding to Jeff's remarks, not yours, here. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:22, 13 April 2014 (UTC)
Then your comments make even less sense as his were specifically about the rules of wikipedia - thus "encyclopedic conventions". To be more explicit review the presentations of the Faith or Baha'u'llah in scholarly journals and you will find the Shrine more than the "picture".--Smkolins (talk) 20:08, 13 April 2014 (UTC)
There is no such convention as you refer to. Look at Mormons for example. (In Islam it is explicitly forbidden to represent their prophet (PBUH) - Yet Wikipedia has an image with his face painted.) Jesus (PBUH) is depicted in Christianity. I am afraid you are the one who doesn't make sense here (& to be honest, I don't really care whether to put this picture or not). Bye! (talk) 04:25, 14 April 2014 (UTC)


I think the concept of Infallibility should be explained on the Baha'i main page as it applies to the UHJ. The Baha'i point of view should also be mentioned on the infallibility page itself since we have other religions' point of view already. My 2 cents.

Both seem like valid suggestions. The question, insofar as this article is concerned, is how to best include that (in the Baha'i Administration section) appropriately? Peter Deer (talk) 15:10, 7 May 2012 (UTC)
I do not believe in this infallibility (but this is irrelevant within this discussion). However this is a U.H.J. material claim and the best way to say it is that Baha'ullah (i.e. Mirza Hussein Ali-Nuri) gave this assurance (& if it is false and can be proven beyond doubt as "false", it would make him a false prophet.)

The approach must be to use reliable sources and relate how they present the information on the concept. As a first guess I'd suggest Peter Smith's "A Baha'i Concise Encyclopedia" on pages 196-197. --Smkolins (talk) 12:51, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

I know WP:RS. This is *not* about TRUTH (or justice) on WP but much less, such as sourcing. However, this material evidence might already be in US Courts' hands for something a bit more important (if you know where to look at - hint: free KEYWORD search on PACER?..) Please don't ask for specifics as I am not here to argue with anybody. I am just trying to improve this article for all the WP readers. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:40, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

Name of the religion[edit]

There is no suggestion that we should call the Baha'i Faith "Baha'ianity", on the analogy of "Christianity", nor (I hope) would we want to call Judaism "Judainity", or Christianity "Christism". If English speaking Buddhists preferred "The Buddhist Faith" as THE descriptive name for their religion I hope nobody would object - if only because it would be none of our conern. Recent suggestions that somehow the Bahai's, unlike the members of every other religion, have an obligation to adopt a name with an analogy to something else (or anything else?) is plain silly. Just imagine a similar obligation being applied to the adherents of any other religion. A further objection to "Baha'ism" is that the term has for a long time very seldom been used in a genuinely dispassionate sense - and is generally, at least in English, frankly derogatory. It is hardly surprising that the Baha'is themselves might prefer a simple descriptive term. There are equivalent (similarly obsolete/derogatory) terms for other religions, particularly Islam, that are similarly inappropriate, at least in an encyclopedic context. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 11:50, 6 April 2014 (UTC)