Writings and Teachings of the Bab

Another famous work of this stage is the Seven Proofs (Dala’li Sab’ih) written in Maku in which the Bab brings seven proofs to prove that the mere revelation of divine words by him is a sufficient evidence of the truth of his claim. One of the last major works of the Bab is Five Modes of Revelation (Panj Sh’an), written in Chihriq, on the occasion of the sixth year of his declaration on March 20, 1850. On that day the lunar day of his declaration (5 of Jamadi I, 1260 or 23 of May, 1844) coincides with the first day of solar year which is the first day of the Babi calendar. (Panj Sha’n 8-13) Therefore, two festivals are united in one day. Various, probably nineteen, chapters of the book discuss some central theological issues through an interpretation of one of the names of God. Tablet of nineteen Temples (Hayakili Vahid) or Tablet of Letters (Lawhi Hurufat) which discusses the mystery of the nineteen temples of the Babi religion, is one of the chapters of this book. Mention must be made of a short but central work of the Bab at this stage. Written close to the end of his life, Tablet to Mulla Baqir discusses the method of investigating the claim of Him Whom God shall make manifest. Since entire writings of the third stage is oriented towards the recognition of the Promised One, this tablet can be seen as the pivot of all his writings. The main message of the text is that the Promised One should be recognized by his being and his verses, without reference to anything or, anyone else. (Saiedi Gate371-5) Some Central Ideas In the remainder of this discussion I outline the general worldview of the writings of the Bab. Reinterpretation of Theology The writings of the Bab reinterpret the major theological concepts of the past religions. Shi’i Islam affirmed five theological principles: the unity of God, prophethood, Resurrection, Imamate, and relative human freedom (justice of God). A. God Writings of the Bab is filled with emphasis on the absolute transcendence of God, rejecting any anthropomorphic conception of him. The unity of God means that there can be no distinction between various attributes and the essence of God. This means that God cannot be defined or praised or known except in terms of the fact that he is beyond recognition. At the level of true God nothing else has ever existed let alone being able to know God. (Persian Bayan 1:1) What we call the ‘words of God’ is in reality the words of the supreme reflection of God in this world which is identical with the heart and truth of the prophets. (Persian Bayan 2:14) We humans have defined God in terms of attributes like knowledge and power because these are our own characteristics, seen as perfection in our existence. Transcendental God is above such and any descriptions. (Panj Sha’n 392) B. Prophets According to the Bab, since the reality of God is inaccessible to the world, out of his love, he defines and describes himself to his creatures so that they can know him. But this self-description of God is not the essence and truth of God. Instead, it is the reflection of God in the world, a description that fits the reality of the world itself. This divine self-description is the truth of the Manifestations of God or the prophets. (Saiedi ch. 6) At the same time, the truth of everything is the divine revelation in their hearts. Therefore, the Manifestations of God are the supreme revelation of God in the world, and it is through

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