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A story about Baha’u’llah?

Posted by Sen on March 26, 2010

A google search on “killed one hundred and thirty people in one night” will turn up several repetitions of the claim that Baha’u’llah killed one hundred and thirty people in one night. The story appears to originate in June 1997, in an article by Imran Shaykh on the BahaiAwareness site. It was picked up in an article posted on ‘The Religion of Islam,’ a Muslim missionary site, in 2006. More recently it has appeared on facebook and on the candidly titled “Anti Bahai Website” and various other places.

There is a brief account of the night in question in the Tarikh-e Jadid, page 59, which is available on google books:

[various government forces] set out in haste to subdue and destroy the Castle, and, on their arrival there, began to throw up earthworks and to dig a trench. But on the other [Babi] side, as a measure of defence, a body of men marched out, attacked the entrenchment, routed the enemy, and, without losing even one of their own men, slew a hundred and thirty of their antagonists. And Jenab-i-Kuddus [i.e., Quddus] had announced that in this fight none of them were fated to fall.

The source cited by Imram Shaykh and those who have copied him is the Nuqtatu’l-Kaf, page 161, which is available on the H-bahai library. Because this is a very heavy pdf file, I’ve made an image of the relevant page:

In the account in the Nuqtatu’l-Qaf, the fighting is not in an entrenchment, but in a village (Deh-e Nazar Khan) where the government forces were preparing weapons and fortifications. The Babi leaders are not named: rather it says “Their honours – i.e., the Babis – also assembled and, during the night, attacked the village and killed one hundred and thirty people.”

Baha’u’llah is not mentioned here. Indeed, he hardly could be mentioned, because the incident occurred in the early days of the siege of Shaykh Tabarsi, when a group of Babis were in the process of turning the rural shrine of Shaykh Tabarsi into a defensible position. The leading protagonists on the Babi side were Mulla Husayn and Quddus. Baha’u’llah visited Shaykh Tabarsi briefly once, but he was not there during the fighting (during much of it, he was imprisoned in Amul).

So where did Imran Khan get the idea that “Baha’u’llah killed one hundred and thirty people in one night”?

~~ Sen ~~
For the benefit of those searching in Persian script:
یک صد و سی نفر را بقتل رسانیدید

Short link: http://wp.me/pcgF5-18S


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