Martyrdom of the Báb Observed Today

bmb-7841023-high-(1)Bahá’ís around the world gather at noon today at Bahá’í Centers, Holy Places, and homes to observe the Martyrdom of the Báb, the Prophet-Herald of Bahá’u’lláh, the Founder of the Baha’i Faith.

On July 9, 1850, the Grand Vizier of Nasiri’d-Din Shah in Persia ordered the Báb’s execution. Thousands crowded the rooftops that overlooked the barracks square in Tabríz where the Báb and a young follower were to be executed by a firing squad. In the intense heat of the noonday sun, the Báb and his follower were suspended by ropes against a wall of the barracks. A regiment of 750 soldiers opened fire in three successive volleys. When the smoke and dust of the gunpowder cleared, the Báb had vanished from sight. Only His companion remained, alive and unscathed, standing beside the wall on which they had been suspended. The ropes by which they had been hung alone were severed. After a search, the Báb was found in His prison cell, continuing a conversation with His secretary that had been earlier interrupted by the guards for the execution.

“Now you may proceed to fulfil your intention,” the Báb told His captors. Again, He was brought out for execution. After the first regiment refused to fire, another was assembled and ordered to shoot. This time the bodies of the Báb and His young follower were shattered. A whirlwind of dust engulfed the city, blotting out the light of the sun until nightfall.

In 1909, after being hidden away for more than half a century, the Báb’s remains were finally interred on Mount Carmel in the Holy Land. Today, entombed in an exquisite golden-domed Shrine, encompassed by spectacular terraced gardens and fountains, the Báb rests in conspicuous glory, a symbol of the triumph of the Cause that He heralded over the fiercest of opposition. Throughout the world, millions recognize the Báb as the divinely inspired Herald of the Bahá’í Faith and turn reverently to His Writings to discover the “resplendent Light of God.”

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