Baha'i Scholarship

{josquote}The TARIKH list and Planet Bahá’í are forums for unrest, where (often) scholars and others debate Bahá’í teachings in a futile endeavour to force it to conform to modern ideas or ideologies.{/josquote}

Bahá’í scholarship has a long history, with its roots in the early Bábí community. The Letters of the Living were Shaykhí mullás, trained by the renowned Sayyid Kázim, who was the disciple of Shaykh Ahmad al-Ahsá’í. The Shaykhí tradition itself had its roots in the long shí‘í tradition of scholarship that claimed to derive its authority and wisdom from the holy Imáms themselves. While Shaykh Ahmad did couch his writings in the language of past traditions and philosophies, especially that of the ‘Ishráqí (illuminationist’) philosophy, his scholarship was also a renewal of scholarship itself. Although his was a recognised mujtahid, he derived his authority from a source that was invisible, unseen. He claimed to be in direct contact with the holy Imáms who appeared to him in dreams and visions. The shí‘í scholars of the day had lost touch with the spirit of Islam, that was well on its way to complete extinction. Shaykh Ahmad revealed the inner meanings of the scriptures and the prophecies concerning the resurrection and Day of Judgement.

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