DID YOU KNOW? : On July 9, 1850, a momentous event unfolded in Tabriz, Persia, forever etching the name of the Bab in the annals of history? The Bab, a radiant soul and the forerunner of the Baha’i Faith, faced a profound and dramatic execution that would leave an indelible mark on the hearts and minds of countless individuals.
As the day dawned, a sense of trepidation filled the air. The Bab, accompanied by his steadfast young follower named Anis, awaited his fate with an unwavering spirit. The authorities, determined to quell the influence of the burgeoning Babi movement, ordered the Bab’s execution by firing squad in the town square of Tabriz.
Amidst the tense atmosphere, a peculiar incident occurred. Sam Khan, the commander of the Armenian regiment entrusted with the task of carrying out the execution, found himself plagued by doubt and inner turmoil. Deeply moved by the Bab’s unwavering faith and his teachings of love and unity, Sam Khan sought forgiveness in advance. “I profess the Christian faith,” he confided to the Bab, “and entertain no ill will against you. If your Cause be the Cause of Truth, enable me to free myself from the obligation to shed your blood.”
The Bab, in his characteristic humility and wisdom, responded with words of solace and assurance. “Follow your instructions,” he gently replied, “And if your intention be sincere, the Almighty is surely able to relieve you from your perplexity.”
The appointed hour arrived, and the muskets roared as the firing squad discharged their weapons. The sound of the volley reverberated through the air, and for a brief moment, a cloud of smoke engulfed the scene. As the smoke cleared, an extraordinary sight awaited the bewildered crowd. The Bab had vanished from sight, while his loyal companion, Anis, stood unscathed at the base of the wall. The ropes that had bound them both lay in tatters, a testament to an inexplicable occurrence.
The crowd gasped in awe and wonder, convinced that they had witnessed a divine miracle. Sam Khan, now released from his perplexity, immediately gave the order for his seven hundred and fifty riflemen to march away. He vowed never again to obey such an order, even if it cost him his own life. The power of the Bab’s presence had touched the heart of this Russian officer, forever transforming his perspective.
However, the unfolding drama was far from over. Another complication arose, as the colonel of the official Tabriz bodyguard volunteered to carry out the execution. Determined to crush the Bab’s influence, the authorities were relentless in their pursuit. Guards were dispatched to retrieve the Bab from his cell, where he peacefully concluded a conversation with his companions. Bound once again, side by side with Anis, the Bab faced his final moments on this earthly plane.
The second firing squad assembled, their resolve unwavering. This time, the bullets found their mark, and the life of the Bab and his loyal companion were tragically extinguished. The bodies, fused and riddled with bullets, were left to rest under the golden dome of the Shrine of the Bab, atop Mount Carmel in Haifa, Israel.
Today, millions of people from around the globe embark on pilgrimages to this sacred site, drawn by the spirit and message of the Bab. The Shrine stands as a testament to the transformative power of his teachings—a message of unity, peace, love, and selflessness that resounds through the ages.
The Bab’s sacrifice and his steadfast devotion to his cause ignited a flame that would pave the way for the advent of Baha’u’llah, the founder of the Baha’i Faith. His life and martyrdom serve as a poignant reminder of the enduring resilience of the human spirit and the unyielding power of truth.
So, as we reflect on that fateful day, July 9, 1850, let us honor the memory of the Bab and his unwavering dedication to his divine mission. Let us strive to embrace the ideals of unity, peace, and love that he espoused, and in doing so, contribute to the betterment of ourselves and the world around us.
Reference : The Caravan, Volume 7, Edition 3