Thursday, February 28, 2008

OnTahirih (The Pure One) or Quarratu'l-Ayn : Neither the dutiful daughter nor ideal wife or mother

This has got to be one of the most succinct statements with regard to the Baha'i teachings on the equality of men and women I've come across. Click over for the full article. -gw

EVERY RELIGION has its model of ideal women. In Hinduism we have Sita, the perfect wife who remains faithful to her husband at any cost. In Christianity we have Virgin Mary, the symbol of motherhood .In Islam Fatimih, the daughter of Mohammad models the role of mother wife and daughter together. ...

Quarat al-ayn who is the most prominent women model in baby Bahai history is neither the dutiful daughter nor an ideal wife or mother since her estrangement from her husband has led to her forced separation from her children. Being a poetess with excellent education in traditional Islamic sciences she continuously opposed the theological position of her father Mullah Sallih. Not only was she fiercely anticlerical, she even refused to perform her daily prayers. But her most controversial and audacious act was to appear unveiled in a gathering of believers ...

No other religion has been as explicit as the Bahais in its support of the principle of equality of men and women .
Jayati Chakraborty
"Anatomy is not destiny – a Bahai perspective"


Barmak Kusha said...

Actually, George, this is a very common misconception, one which I myself held until very recently. Tahirih was the most outstanding woman of the Babi Dispensation, but not of the Baha'i one. Bahiyyih Khanum, Baha'u'llah's daughter, and Abdu'-Baha's sister, is the "outstanding heroine of the Baha'i Dispensation," according to Shoghi Effendi. [Source: Bahiyyih Khanum: The Greatest Holy Leaf, A Compilation, p. 62.]

Barmak Kusha said...

Having said this, I don't want to distract one jot from the exalted rank of Jinabi Tahirih either! Neither do I want to detract from the well-written article you referenced.

George Wesley Dannells said...

Thank you so much for bringing to my attention the error I made in my my original title for this post. I have retitled it so as not to be misleading. Yes, although the writer of the excerpt quoted describes Tahirih as a prominent woman "in baby Baha'i history," she is actually the most outstanding in the Babi dispensation whereas Bahiyyih is of the Baha'i.