July 24, 2018

An example of how the Guardian lived frugally and simply – by Hand of the Cause Furutan

Throughout our pilgrimage [1941] we visited the Shrines of the Báb and 'Abdu'l-Baha in the company of the beloved Guardian. He would chant the Tablet of Visitation in the Shrine of the Báb and then in the Shrine of 'Abdu'l-Baha.

He always removed his half-boots outside the doors of the Shrines. One day I noticed that the right wrist of the Guardian was in a white bandage and he had difficulty in moving it. I immediately thought that I should help remove his shoes. I bent down on my knees and started to undo the knots of his bootlaces. He was just bending down, and said very quietly, "Don't go to the trouble." I said, "Beloved Guardian, this is my honor." I removed his shoes, took my handkerchief from my pocket, and cleaned them. As I was cleaning his boots I noticed that one of them had a hole in it and the other one was repaired.

I was truly saddened. I knew that the Guardian lived frugally and simply, but I had not been aware of its extent.  
- Ali-Akbar Furutan  (‘Hand of the Cause of God Furutan’, by Iran Furutan Muhajir)

July 9, 2018

July 1850: Safeguarding the sacred remains of the Báb and His companion

Moat surrounding city of Tabriz, circa 1930s
On the evening of the very day of the Báb's execution, which fell on the ninth of July 1850…, during the thirty-first year of His age and the seventh of His ministry, the mangled bodies of the Báb and His companion were transferred from the courtyard of the barracks to the edge of the moat outside the gate of the city. Four companies, each consisting of ten sentinels, were ordered to keep watch in turn over them so that none of His followers might claim them.

On the following day the Russian Consul in Tabriz visited the spot, and ordered the artist who had accompanied him to make a drawing of the remains as they lay beside the moat. Nabil, in his chronical, ‘The Dawn-Breakers’, relates the following account from a believer by the name of Hájí ‘Alí-‘Askar who saw this drawing:

“An official of the Russian consulate, to whom I was related, showed me that same sketch on the very day it was drawn. It was such a faithful portrait of the Báb that I looked upon! No bullet had struck His forehead, His cheeks, or His lips. I gazed upon a smile which seemed to be still lingering upon His countenance. His body, however, had been severely mutilated. I could recognize the arms and head of His companion, who seemed to be holding Him in his embrace. As I gazed horror-struck upon that haunting picture, and saw how those noble traits had been disfigured, my heart sank within me. I turned away my face in anguish and, regaining my house, locked myself in my room. For three days and three nights, I could neither sleep nor eat, so overwhelmed was I with emotion. That short and tumultuous life, with all its sorrows, its turmoil, its banishments, and eventually the awe-inspiring martyrdom with which it had been crowned, seemed again to be re-enacted before my eyes. I tossed upon my bed, writhing in agony and pain.”