Aghsan aghsan

On 15 October, 1960, some three years after the passing of Shoghi Effendi, the first beloved Guardian of the Faith, the former Hands of the Cause in Haifa, who had upon his passing, publicly declared to the Baha’i world that the institution of the Guardianship had come to an end with his passing, notwithstanding, sent a letter to all National Spiritual Assemblies signed by them: “In the service of the beloved Guardian, Hands of the Cause in the Holy Land.” This letter is of considerable historical importance since in making such a declaration they, the Hands, in fact, had thereby ignobly registered publicly their infidelity to, and betrayal of, both ‘Abdu’l- Bahá and Shoghi Effendi. As a consequence of this betrayal, they forfeited their rank as Hands of the Cause, a rank that had been bestowed upon them by Shoghi Effendi during the closing years of his ministry. Future Baha’i historians will certainly record their ignominious downfall as one that had reduced the rank of these Hands to an even lower degree than that to which Judas Iscariot and Umar had fallen during the respective Dispensations of Christ and Muhammad. For, instead of remaining faithful to the mandate contained in the sacred Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá that enjoined them to remain “under his shadow and obey his command”.* [i.e. the living Guardian of the Cause of God] they had joined the ranks of the unfaithful who sought to “disobey and seek division,”* an act for which they would bring down upon themselves “the wrath of God and His vengeance”*

*(From the Will and Testament, p. 12)

Although their letter had contained a quotation from the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá they had taken no heed of the following warning contained in that same Document:

“Beware, beware, lest the days after the ascension (of Bahá’u’lláh) be repeated, when the Centre of Sedition waxed haughty and rebellious and with Divine Unity for his excuse deprived himself and perturbed and poisoned others.”

And despite of the strong warnings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in His sacred Will and Testament “they advanced a pretext, raised the standard of revolt, waxed stubborn and opened wide the door of false interpretation.” Shamelessly, at the end of their letter, they have quoted the following from ‘Abdu’l- Bahá:” …O God, my God! I call Thee, Thy Prophets and Thy Messengers, Thy Saints and Thy Holy Ones, to witness that I have declared conclusively Thy Proofs unto Thy loved ones and set forth clearly all things unto them, that they may watch over Thy Faith, guard Thy Straight Path and protect Thy Resplendent Law. Thou art, verily, the All-Knowing, the All-Wise!” While they had shunned the Guardian of the Cause of God and disregarded the Will and Testament which proclaims:
“The mighty stronghold shall remain impregnable and safe through obedience to him who is the Guardian of the Cause of God.”

(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Will and Testament, p. 11)

The discussion below shall be confined only to the false interpretation that the former Hands placed upon the word ‘branch’ as it appears in the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and the consequent confusion and misunderstanding that they created amongst the believers in this regard.
The letter of the now violating Hands failed to present any rational logic, and it contained statements that were clearly contradictory to the provisions of the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and the writings of Shoghi Effendi. Ironically, they themselves wrote:

“It has become clear during the past months that lack of knowledge of the meaning of the word “branch” as used in the Master’s Will and Testament has led to great confusion in certain quarters in the West.”

(Ministry of the Custodians, p. 232)

The fact is that there should have been no confusion. It was the errant Hands themselves, in their rebellion against and opposition to the continuing Guardianship, who had created confusion about the meaning of the word ‘branch’, for they, although clearly lacking any authority to do so, came up with their own erroneous interpretation as to the meaning of this word as contained in the following statement:

“The word ‘Ghusn’ (plural Aghsan) is an Arabic word, meaning branch. Bahá’u’lláh used this word specifically to designate His own male descendants. It does not apply to any other category of people. He gave the title to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá of ‘The Most Great Branch,’ His second son, Mehdi, ‘the Purest Branch’, etc. The Guardian himself is designated in the Master’s Will as ‘the Chosen Branch’. All the male relatives of the Báb. are invariably referred to as “Afnan”, which means “twigs”.

“These two designations are not interchangeable.”

“Over and over in Bahá’u’lláh’s Tablets these terms Aghsan and “Afnan” are specifically used in this sense,
“For instance, in the Tablet of the Branch, the original word “Ghosn” (i.e. branch), refers to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.”

(Custodians, Ministry of the Custodians, p. 233)

At first glance the first paragraph in the quotation above seems to be correct, but it is questionable why they capitalized the first letters of the words ‘ghusn’ and ‘aghsan’ but then didn’t capitalize the first letter “b” in its translated meaning of ‘branch’? Later, when their baseless assertion about the use of caps is made, their reason for doing this comes to light. Their statement in the second paragraph is an outright falsehood, because the Arabic word ‘ghusn’ refers to a division or subdivision of the stem or axis of a tree or shrub, similarly to the meaning of the word ‘branch’ in English. Whenever this word is used by itself it carries the original meaning of ‘branch’. In the writings of Bahá’u’lláh there will be found several instances of the usage of the word ‘ghusn’ and its plural ‘aghsan’ which simply means ‘branch’ or ‘branches’ as defined previously.

It must be noted that similarly to the use of the word ‘branch’ in English to define sections or subdivisions such as: branches of learning and science, of a library, a river, etcetera, the word ‘ghusn’ and its plural ‘aghsan’ in its relationship with other words has been used in the writings of Bahá’u’lláh in representational or symbolic ways, but significantly they have usually been employed to portray spiritual relationships or intellectual realities, even when used in their negative sense such as in the term ’aghsan-i-kebr’ which means ‘branches of haughtiness’ that can be found in one of Bahá’u’lláh’s Tablets in its original language in the book: (Majmuih-yi-Alvah-i-Mubarakih, (Chap-i-Misr, p. 184)

Half a century has elapsed since this false interpretation was made and publicized by the errant Hands of the Cause, and all of these former Hands have died without their having presented any evidence from the writings of Bahá’u’lláh in support of their false statement that He had “used this word specifically to designate all of His male descendants.” Neither has nor will, the Hands-made bogus UHJ ever be able to do so either. Bahá’u’lláh has conferred a superlative or comparative appellation upon each of His sons prefaced by the *Ghusn,* such as *Ghusn-I-Azam* (Greatest Branch), *Ghusn-I-Athar* (Purest Branch), or *Ghusn-I-Akbar* (Greater Branch). He never conferred upon anyone other than His sons such titles, nor did He write anything designating His other male descendants in such a manner.

The former Hands have written:

“The Guardian himself is designated in the Master’s Will as ‘the Chosen Branch’.”

It must be noted that in the Master’s sacred Will and Testament, translated into English by Shoghi Effendi, contrary to the translation of the terms of the Will and Testament wherein the former Hands have referred to the Guardian as the “Chosen Branch,” Shoghi Effendi has used the lower case form of the letter “b” in reference to the Guardian as “the chosen branch”, who had moreover, been identified by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in this same document as the ‘sign of God’ and ‘the Guardian of the Cause of God’. These terms had obviously referred to the station of Guardianship and not solely to the personage of Shoghi Effendi (and therefore are not meant as a personally exclusive title that pertained only to him). ‘Abdu’l-Bahá enjoins every believer to obey Shoghi Effendi “as he is the sign of God, the chosen branch, the Guardian of the Cause of God, he unto whom all the Aghsan, the Afnan, the Hands of the Cause of God and His loved ones must turn.”

(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Will and Testament, p. 11)

The errant Hands have written:

“All the male relatives of the Báb. are invariably referred to as “Afnan”, which means “twigs” (i.e. small branches). These two designations are not interchangeable.”

It must be understood that the relationship to Bahá’u’lláh is of two kinds: one is spiritual and the other biological or genetic, the spiritual relationship being much more important than the other. This is very clear in His writings, and the beloved Guardian gives the following example:

“The following words of Bahá’u’lláh are to be found in one of His supplications in the book: PRAYERS AND MEDITATIONS (translated by Shoghi Effendi). This significant phrase is included in the following passage quoted in its entirety below as it appears on page 154 of that book:

“I beseech Thee, O Thou Who art my Governor and the Possessor of all names, to protect them that have branched out from me (Afnán), whom Thou hast caused to be related to Thyself, and to whom Thou hast, in this Revelation, shown Thy special favor, and whom Thou hast summoned to draw nigh unto Thee and to turn towards the horizon of Thy Revelation.”

It should be clear that the relationship to which Bahá’u’lláh refers in the above passage is a spiritual one and it has been their fidelity to Him that has earned them the designation of spiritual branches. It is such spiritual relationships in the Faith that have taken precedence in the past and shall always take precedence in the future over physical relationships.”

Similarly, the following attribute of an Afnan can be seen on page 92 of the book Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh which has been translated by Shoghi Effendi as well.

“O Afnan, O thou that hast branched from Mine ancient Stock! My glory and My loving-kindness rest upon thee. How vast is the tabernacle of the Cause of God! It hath overshadowed all the peoples and kindreds of the earth, and will, erelong, gather together the whole of mankind beneath its shelter.”

Careful study of the writings of Bahá’u’lláh makes it clear to the reader that He has used the word ‘ghusn’ and its plural ‘aghsan’ mostly to indicate a spiritual relationship to Him and has nothing to do with a physical and biological relationship or descent. Actually, Bahá’u’lláh Himself, on several occasions has clearly and explicitly in unambiguous language explained this fact, but the errant Hands have ignored this and have shamelessly asserted the opposite. They and their Hand-made and bogus UHJ have tried to hide this fact. Those who know Persian can read the book Majmuih-yi-Alvah-i-Mubarakih, (Chap-i-Misr, p.343) and the book Ma’idiy-i-Asmani (Vol 4, p.42) and see with their own eyes the statement of Bahá’u’lláh in the original language in which He explains:

“Since the affectionate and faithful believers are as the (aghsan) branches and the leaves of this Holy Tree, therefore whatever hath fallen on this Mighty Stock; will also befall the (aghsan) branches, twigs and leaves as well. This is how in every age these tragedies and nuisances have been and will be for the lovers of the Beauty of the All-Glorious.”

Also, they can see this for themselves in the following translation of the original text:

“O’ Seeker do not consider reference in The Holy Scriptures to such attributes and names as: the Tree of Blessedness, the Divine Lote-Tree, the Forbidden Tree, the Leaves, the Fruits and the like of that Tree, to be imaginary or fictional. In the sight of God, He has made reference to these attributes in distinguishing the devoted believers in God. As long as a believer is under the shadow of the Divine Lote Tree he will be a branch of the Tree of Blessedness and be exalted in the presence of God, but upon turning away will be consigned to the burning bush of Hell. While remaining faithful, either as an afnan (twigs), as aghsan (branches), as o’ragh (leaves) and assmar (fruits) of that Tree, their faith will be perceived as substantiated but upon their opposition all will be considered as rejected and abandoned”.

(Bahá’u’lláh, Ma’idiy-i-Asmani. Vol 7, p.21)

Similarly, while we can see the usage of the word ‘Leaf’ and its plural ‘Leaves’ as a title for the mother and sister of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in the writings of Bahá’u’lláh, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and Shoghi Effendi, the same words without the usage of caps are noticeable when they have addressed or made reference to other spiritual women.

For example, caps are used when Bahá’u’lláh is addressing or referring to female members of the Holy Family, such as found in a title in which He has addressed Bahiyyih Khanum – “The Greatest Holy Leaf” as follows:

“My Leaf! Hearken thou unto My Voice: Verily there is none other God but Me, the Almighty, the All-Wise. I can well inhale from thee the fragrance of My love and the sweet-smelling savor wafting from the raiment of My Name, the Most Holy, the Most Luminous.”

(Compilations, Bahiyyih Khanum, p. 3)

Or as He has revealed to the Most Exalted Leaf, mother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá:

Oh thou blessed and sparkling Leaf! Sing and chant on the Twigs of the Bower of Bahá in this exalted Word; Verily there is no God but Him, the Lord of the Beginning and the End. We have surely ordained thee as the best of the maid-servants, and have bestowed upon thee such a station from before Our Presence to which no women have preceded (thee).

(Compilations, Bahá’í Prayers 9, p. 9)

With reference to the “question concerning the 54th chapter of Isaiah: This chapter refers to the Exalted Leaf, the mother of ‘Abdul-Bahá.”

(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 107)

And, as used by Shoghi Effendi in the following message:

“The Purest Branch, the martyred son, the companion, and amanuensis of Bahá’u’lláh, that pious and holy youth, who in the darkest days of Bahá’u’lláh’s incarceration in the barracks of ‘Akká entreated, on his death-bed, his Father to accept him as a ransom for those of His loved ones who yearned for, but were unable to attain, His presence, and the saintly mother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, surnamed Navvab by Bahá’u’lláh, and the first recipient of the honored and familiar title of “the Most Exalted Leaf,” separated in death above half a century, and forced to suffer the humiliation of an alien burial-ground, are now at long last reunited with the Greatest Holy Leaf with whom they had so abundantly shared the tribulations of one of the most distressing episodes of the Heroic Age of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh.”

(Shoghi Effendi, Messages to America, p. 31)

As an example of the use of the lower case is found in the following Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh that denote a spiritual relationship:

“O MY handmaiden, O My leaf! Render thou thanks unto the Best-Beloved of the world for having attained this boundless grace at a time when the world’s learned and most distinguished men have remained deprived thereof.”

(Bahá’u’lláh, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 254)

“O My handmaiden and My leaf! Rejoice with great joy inasmuch as thy call hath ascended unto the Divine Lote-Tree and is answered from the all-glorious Horizon. Verily, no God is there but Me, the Wronged One, the Exile.”

(Bahá’u’lláh, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 251)

And, as used by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in the following Tablets:

“O maid-servant of God! Be rejoiced for God hath made thee a believing maid-servant in His Holy Threshold and a leaf of the leaves of the Tree of Life.”

(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 140)

“Convey my greetings to the spiritual leaf, the servant of God, thy honored wife, the esteemed . . . , and say unto her: “Serve in the olive garden of God, that God may help thee by those confirmations by which intellects are astounded and the perceptions are cleared.”

(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 172)

How can anyone who calls her/himself a Bahá’í disregard the clear writings of Bahá’u’lláh and blindly accept the false interpretation of the former violating Hands and the bogus organization they have set up or any other cult which shamefully has concocted and substituted their own false, alleged and materialistic eligibility qualifications pertaining to the line of succession.

In the writings of Bahá’u’lláh He uses the word ‘Ghusn’ and its plural ‘Aghsan’ when referring to a physical or biological relationship only when He refers to His sons either individually which was most often the case and then He identifies them by their full title such as ‘Ghusn-I-Azam’ (Greatest Branch), ‘Ghusn-I-Athar’ (Purest Branch), or when He mentions them collectively as the ‘Aghsan’ (Branches) such as found in the Kitab-i-Ahd (Book of the Covenant). Whenever Shoghi Effendi, the first Guardian of the Baha’i Faith and the sole authorized interpreter of the Word, was engaged, during his unique and precious service to the Cause of God, in translating the sacred writings into English in which he made reference to the ‘Ghusn’ or ‘Aghsan’, it was invariably a reference to the sons of Bahá’u’lláh and accordingly Shoghi Effendi would capitalize the first letter according to the rules of English grammar. Furthermore, he identified the ‘Aghsan’ or ‘Branches’ (with caps) as the Sons of Bahá’u’lláh, as can be seen in God Passes By (p.239), in Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh (p.244), and in Bahá’u’lláh’s Epistle to the Son of the Wolf (p. 93). This fact has been explained comprehensively by the third Guardian of the Baha’i Faith in an article titled “THE AGHSAN MYTH EXPOSED” and it can be accessed through his site:

Whenever ‘ghusn’ or ‘aghsan’ has been used in the original meaning of ‘branch’ such as in a division or subdivision of the stem or axis of a tree or shrub or in a general reference to the faithful and devoted believers or in any other general references, Shoghi Effendi would in his translation use the lower case. In the following quotation from the writings of Bahá’u’lláh the usage of both the upper and lower cases may be seen in one paragraph, thereby clearly enlightening the meaning that is to be given to the word ‘Branches’:

“We pray God to protect thee from the heat of jealousy and the cold of hatred. He verily is nigh, ready to answer.” Thus hath My tongue spoken unto one of My Branches (sons), and We have mentioned it unto such of Our loved ones as have cast away their idle fancies, and clung unto that which hath been prescribed unto them in the day whereon the Daystar of Certitude hath shone forth above the horizon of the will of God, the Lord of the worlds. This is the day on which the Bird of Utterance hath warbled its melody upon the branches, in the name of its Lord, the God of Mercy.”

Bahá’u’lláh, “Epistle to the Son of the Wolf” (p. 93)

The errant Hands in the following section of their letter have exhibited their ignorance, egotism, lack of logic and laughable reasoning:

“The ordinary English usage of the word ‘branch’ has caused a great deal of confusion, whereas there is not a shadow of ambiguity in the Persian and Arabic texts. Because of ignorance of the Arabic and Persian languages and the use of these two terms in our sacred texts, spurious arguments have been put forth by those making the false claim that Shoghi Effendi could have appointed a successor other than a blood descendant of Bahá’u’lláh.”

“It should likewise be pointed out that neither in Persian nor Arabic are there ever any capital letters, so that it is impossible to deduce any arguments from a capitalization or lack of capitalization in the English texts.”

In saying the above, the violating Hands had the audacity to criticize the interpretive translation of the Master’s Will and Testament by Shoghi Effendi in stating that: “The ordinary English usage of the word ‘branch’ has caused a great deal of confusion.” Obviously, they were referring to his translation of the following passage in the Will and Testament:

“O ye beloved of the Lord! It is incumbent upon the Guardian of the Cause of God to appoint in his own life-time him that shall become his successor, that differences may not arise after his passing. He that is appointed must manifest in himself detachment from all worldly things, must be the essence of purity, must show in himself the fear of God, knowledge, wisdom and learning. Thus, should the first-born of the Guardian of the Cause of God not manifest in himself the truth of the words: — “The child is the secret essence of its sire,” that is, should he not inherit of the spiritual within him (the Guardian of the Cause of God) and his glorious lineage not be matched with a goodly character, then must he, (the Guardian of the Cause of God) choose another branch to succeed him.”

(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Will and Testament, p. 12)

By the Hands writing that: “The ordinary English usage of the word ‘branch’ has caused a great deal of confusion,” these inexcusably ignorant Hands were, in effect, claiming that the word ‘branch’ as used in this passage of the sacred Will and Testament should have been translated by Shoghi Effendi as ‘Branch’ so as to confirm their patently false claim that only a male descendant of Baha’u’llah could inherit the Guardianship!

Shoghi Effendi knew perfectly Arabic, English and Persian. This is a fact that had been admitted by the errant Hands too. As the divinely appointed authorized interpreter of the Writings, he was “under the care and protection of the Abha Beauty, under the shelter and unerring guidance of the Exalted One” so there can be no question that when Shoghi Effendi translated the sacred documents of the Faith into English he did it very carefully and correctly. Not only did he in his translations carefully select the proper words of the English language to correctly convey the closest meaning to the writings in their original language but he superbly used English grammar and whenever it was considered necessary, he added an explanation or definitions to prevent any confusion such as, for example: “the Aghsan (His sons)” and “My Branches (sons)”.

The fact that in Arabic and Persian writings capital letters are not used has no bearing on their usage in English writing where capital letters are used and their usage or non-usage does make a lot of differences in the meaning of a sentence. It is very ridiculous to say that because the original language does not utilize caps, we must not use caps in English or that we must not care about it.

Moreover, the errant Hands ignored the fact that the main purpose of this passage in the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá conveys instructions pertaining to the critical and mandatory manner in which the Guardian is required to appoint his successor, as ‘Abdu’l-Bahá states: “it is incumbent upon the Guardian of the Cause of God “to appoint in his own life-time him that shall become his successor” but He outlines the qualifications that his successor must possess in stating: “He that is appointed must manifest in himself detachment from all worldly things, must be the essence of purity, must show in himself the fear of God, knowledge, wisdom and learning.” It is obvious from the foregoing requirement that ‘Abdu’l-Bahá did not stipulate that the successor Guardian must be a biological relative or male descendant of Baha’u’llah.

The third Guardian has written:

“ . . .any claim that ‘Abdu’l-Bahá had restricted the Guardian’s choice of a successor, under the terms of His Will and Testament to an Aghsan, is completely without foundation and is patently false. Furthermore, there is no clause in the Will and Testament that requires the Guardian to appoint only a descendant of Bahá’u’lláh or a Persian as his successor. There is no excuse, therefore, for refusing to accept Shoghi Effendi’s undeniable appointment of a successor “in his own life-time” in complete conformity with the provisions of the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá”.

(Joel B. Marangella, “The Aghsan Myth Exposed”)

Recently some members of the heterodox organization have imagined that the letters which appear in the compilation “The Light of Divine Guidance” (v I, p. 62), allegedly written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi by his secretary to an individual, provide evidence for their spurious claim that as: “The word ‘Ghusn’ (plural Aghsan) is an Arabic word, meaning branch that Bahá’u’lláh had used this word solely to designate His own male descendants.” The obvious falsehood of this same claim, erroneously produced by the former violating Hands, has been proven previously above, but before getting back to this document it is necessary to mention that the said compilation was not prepared during Shoghi Effendi’s lifetime, and its contents were put together by an NSA under the direction of the bogus UHJ nearly a quarter of a century after his passing. Therefore, due to the clear possibility of a manipulation of the writings it particularly cannot be considered a reliable source on matters concerning or relating to the Guardianship.

Also paying attention to the following guidance from the first Guardian is necessary:

“Although the secretaries of the Guardian convey his thoughts and instructions and these messages are authoritative, their words are in no sense the same as his, their style certainly not the same, and their authority less, for they use their own terms and not his exact words in conveying his messages.”

(Shoghi Effendi, “The Unfolding Destiny of the British Baha’i Community,” p. 260)

“The exact status which Shoghi Effendi has intended the friends to give to those communications he sends to individual believers is explained in the following statement written through his secretary to the National Assembly on November 16, 1932:

“As regards Shoghi Effendi’s letters to the individual Bahá’ís, he is always very careful not to contradict himself. He has also said that whenever he has something of importance to say, he invariably communicates it to the National Spiritual Assembly or in his general letters. His personal letters to individual friends are only for their personal benefit and even though he does not want to forbid their publication, he does not wish them to be used too much by the Bahá’í News. Only letters with special significance should be published there.”

(Shoghi Effendi, Extracts from the USBN)

The letter in question is written by a secretary to Dr. Muhlschlegel on 25 September 1934.

This secretary wrote:

“I am directed by the Guardian to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated August 29th, and to express his appreciation of your highly-valued efforts for the translation of the “Kitab-i-Ahd” into German. He hopes that copies of this precious tablet will soon be made available to all the friends and that through its study their knowledge of the Teachings will be deepened, and their zeal for their spread stimulated and sustained.
The term “afnan” means literally small branch, and refers to the relatives of the Báb, both men and women. As the Báb’s only son died while in infancy, the former had no direct descendants. The “afnan” are, therefore, all directly related to the Báb. As to “aghsan”, it also means branch. But it is a bigger branch than “afnan”. It refers to Bahá’u’lláh’s descendants.”

Apparently, the comment of the secretary is in response to a question posed by Dr. Muhlschlegel about the ‘afnan’ and ‘aghsan’ which possibly arose when he was translating the Kitab-i-Ahd (Book of Covenant), into German. The question he asked is not known but it gives the impression that it is not related to the ‘Aghsan’ and ‘Afnan’ mentioned by the Blessed Perfection in His Book of the Covenant since, in this case, unlike that sacred document ‘aghsan’, ‘afnan’ and ‘branch’ are written in lower case. Considering the fact that the Guardians are ‘aghsan’ i.e., ‘branches’ of the Holy Tree and spiritual descendants of Bahá’u’lláh, and although the answer was not directly provided by Shoghi Effendi it seems to be correct.

The ‘Aghsan’ mentioned in the Kitab-i-Ahd (Book of Covenant), are clearly identified by Shoghi Effendi as sons of Bahá’u’lláh in the book “God Passes By” of which he was the author.
My fervent hope is that the Bahá’ís will heed the guidance of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá found in His statement below and completely discard any semblance of blind imitation and obey the commandment of Bahá’u’lláh to investigate the truth for themselves.

“It is evident that no vital results are now forthcoming from the customs, institutions and standpoints of the past. In view of this, shall blind imitations of ancestral forms and theological interpretations continue to guide and control the religious life and spiritual development of humanity today? Shall man gifted with the power of reason unthinkingly follow and adhere to dogma, creeds and hereditary beliefs which will not bear the analysis of reason in this century of effulgent reality? Unquestionably this will not satisfy men of science, for when they find premise or conclusion contrary to present standards of proof and without real foundation, they reject that which has been formerly accepted as standard and correct and move forward from new foundations.”

(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Baha’i World Faith – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Section, p. 224)


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