SHOGHI EFFENDI NEVER WAS SILENT.
Enemies of the Bahá’í Faith are criticizing the Faith by accusing Shoghi Effendi, the first Guardian of the Cause of God, of being silent despite the fact that Shoghi Effendi wrote:
“The Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, which, together with the Kitáb-i-Aqdas, constitute the chief depository wherein are enshrined those priceless elements of that Divine Civilization, the establishment of which is the primary mission of the Bahá’í Faith. A study of the provisions of these sacred documents will reveal the close relationship that exists between them, as well as the identity of purpose and method which they inculcate. Far from regarding their specific provisions as incompatible and contradictory in spirit, every fair-minded inquirer will readily admit that they are not only complementary, but that they mutually confirm one another, and are inseparable parts of one complete unit.”
(The World Order of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 3)
And Shoghi Effendi said: “Everything that is written in the Will and Testament [of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá] will be fulfilled. The Bahá’ís must not be anxious about this.” The adversaries of the Bahá’í Faith said that Shoghi Effendi did not act accordingly to the obligatory commandment of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in His Will and Testament which decrees:
“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.”
The foes of the Faith then say that if Shoghi Effendi could not “appoint in his own life-time him that shall become his successor,” it means that the Administrative Order of the Bahá’í Faith was not well designed, and it is imperfect, etc..
Their wrong supposition is based on the diabolical lies of the bogus UHJ as quoted below:
“There is no doubt at all that in the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Shoghi Effendi was the authority designated to appoint his successor, but he had no children and all the surviving Aghsan had broken the Covenant. Thus, as the Hands of the Cause stated in 1957, it is clear that there was no one he could have appointed in accordance with the provisions of the Will. The fact that Shoghi Effendi did not leave a will cannot be adduced as evidence of his failure to obey Bahá’u’lláh — rather should we acknowledge that in his very silence there is a wisdom and a sign of his infallible guidance.” (The Compilation of Compilations vol. I, p. 353)
Following is the related statement of the former Hands after their conclave in 1957:
“On the following morning, November 19th, nine Hands of the Cause, selected from the Holy Land, and the several continents of East and West, with (Amatu’l-Baha Ruhiyyih Khanum, broke the seals placed upon the beloved Guardian’s safe and desk and made careful examination of their precious contents. These same Hands, rejoining the other Hands assembled in the Mansion of Bahá’u’lláh at Bahji, certified that Shoghi Effendi had left no Will and Testament. It was likewise certified that the beloved Guardian had left no heir.” (Ministry of the Custodians, p. 35)
The Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá reveals:
“The mighty stronghold shall remain impregnable and safe through obedience to him who is the Guardian of the Cause of God,” and commands that the Guardian:
“appoint in his own life-time him that shall become his successor,” not in the form of a will which usually is disclosed after the passing. The Guardian of the Cause of God cannot be silent, and the first Guardian never was silent. What guidance is anticipated from silence, which opens the door to different assumptions and speculations?
Shoghi Effendi knew better than the errant Hands of the Cause and anyone else that He did not have a son, and all the surviving blood descendants of Bahá’u’lláh had broken the Covenant. In a letter on his behalf to an individual believer, which can be found in the Bahá’í News, No. 232, p. 8, June 1950 is written:
“He feels that if … ponders more deeply about the fundamentals of Divine Revelation, she will also come to understand the Guardianship. Once the mind and heart have grasped the fact that God guides men through a Mouthpiece, a human being, a Prophet, infallible and unerring, it is only a logical projection of this acceptance to also accept the station of ‘Abdu’lBahá and the Guardians. The Guardians are the evidence of the maturity of mankind in the sense that at long last men have progressed to the point of having one world, and of needing one world management for human affairs. In the spiritual realm they have also reached the point where God could leave, in human hands (i.e. the Guardians) guided directly by the Báb and Bahá’u’lláh, as the Master states in His Will, the affairs of His Faith for this Dispensation. This is what is meant by ‘this is the day which will not be followed by night.’ In this Dispensation, divine guidance flows on to us in this world after the Prophet’s ascension, through first the Master, and then the Guardians. If a person can accept Bahá’u’lláh’s function, it should not present any difficulty to them to also accept what He has ordained in a Divinely guided individual in matters pertaining to the Faith.” (Directives from the Guardian, p.34)
Less than three years prior to His passing to the Abha Kingdom, Valera Allen and John Allen had recorded in their Pilgrims’ Notes: “The Guardian was asked if the meaning of the verse in the Bible ‘the day that would not be followed by night’ meant that succeeding Manifestations would not be persecuted but immediately accepted by the people. He answered, “No, there will always be evil in the world and doubtless the succeeding Manifestations would be persecuted though in a lesser degree.” The meaning of the verse was that the Guardians would be sources of guidance and protection for the Faith until the coming of the subsequent Manifestation which might not be for 6000 years although He might come any time after 1000 years – depending on need. We became slightly involved as to why the people would probably not accept the new Manifestation if they had the Guardian to guide and direct them which led to Shoghi Effendi recounting for us the functions of Guardianship. He stressed the Infallibility of the Guardian as being the essential thing that kept schisms from developing in the Faith. One could not say that he was infallible only as Interpreter of the Writings but he was infallible in anything that he stated he was infallible in. He was the only one who could know when he was guided infallibly. That was the very nature of infallibility. Regardless of what he talked about if he gave his word as an infallible statement then it was so — if it were a suggestion he would say so. In speaking of the Guardian, as the Head of the Universal House of Justice, he said that the Universal House of Justice was bound to accept the Guardian’s authority if he spoke from the Station of Infallibility, because of the statement in the “Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha” which says: “It is incumbent upon the members of the House of Justice, upon all the Aghsan, the Afnan, the Hands of the Cause of God to show their obedience, submissiveness and subordination unto the Guardian of the Cause of God, to turn unto him and be lowly before him.” He spoke with great power and authority when he mentioned the Station of the Guardian and the functions of the Guardianship.” (Haifa Impressions by Valera Allen and John Allen, 1954. Notes from a pilgrimage in December 1954, p. 12. http://bahai-library.com/allen_haifa_impressions) A response of Shoghi Effendi to one of the pilgrim’s questions asked prior to his passing in 1957 is as follows:
(The Guardian was asked a question concerning whether or not the next Manifestation of God would be opposed by the people of the world, as had Bahá’u’lláh and all former Messengers of God.)
“In the future, when the next Manifestation appears, the Guardian of the Cause at that time will tell the believers who the Manifestation is and will call on them to accept Him. What is the use of the infallibility of the Guardian if he does not do this? This is one of the very important things that he will do. Opposition to the next Manifestation will thus be much less than in former times — that is to say, the area of opposition will be reduced. ‘This is the day that shall not be followed by night’ means that divine guidance will not again be withdrawn from the world.” (Pilgrims’ Notes recorded by Isobel Sabri, 1957 http://bahailibrary.com/sabri_pilgrims_notes) From Pilgrims’ Notes by William Allison in 1957, who had the distinction of being the last of the Bahá’ís to visit the first Guardian in Haifa: “The Guardian said there will be Bahá’í Kings. The Hands of the Cause of God, with their own organization, will be these kings. Their duties, specifically, will be to propagate the Faith and protect it. The Hands of the Cause will outrank the members of the House of Justice. Hujoj. [Huquq.] More will be given on this in later years. It is solely for purification of money and one’s income.
The institution of the Guardianship interprets, directs the Hands, heads the House of Justice and defines their sphere of legislation.” (Pilgrims’ Notes by William Allison in 1957 http://bahai-library.com/allison_pilgrims_notes) In fact, Shoghi Effendi, in accordance to the provisions of the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, appointed His successor in His life-time. In 9 January 1951 Shoghi Effendi by His Only Proclamation issued during his 36-year ministry announced the formation of the first International Bahá’í Council, the real Universal House of Justice, in embryonic form, and by cablegram of 2 March 1951, appointed Mason Remey as the President and Head of the true Universal House of Justice, in embryonic form, i.e. the next Guardian. The presidency of the Universal House of Justice exclusively is the function of the Guardian, and no one other than the Guardian can occupy this position.
The Head of the true Universal House of Justice is pre-appointed, and this capacity comes as an integral part of the authorities and responsibilities of the Guardian delineated by ‘‘Abdu’l-Bahá in His Testament. The Head of this body is the Guardian who is appointed by the predecessor Guardian. No one on earth has the authority to remove the “Sacred Head” of this Body and elect someone instead to replace him.
Mason Remey was appointed by the first Guardian, and after the passing of Shoghi Effendi, nobody had the authority to remove him from this Office to which he was appointed by the first Guardian. Moreover, nobody had the authority to dissolve the International Bahá’í Council, all of whose members were appointed by the first Guardian, and this same body, as originally appointed, had to evolve “INTO OFFICIALLY RECOGNIZED Bahá’í COURT” as the “ESSENTIAL PRELUDE TO THE INSTITUTION OF THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE” as clearly stated in Shoghi Effendi’s Proclamation of 9 January 1951. But in the third stage of its evolution when the Court would be transformed “INTO A DULY ELECTED BODY,” the Head and President had to continue in his Office while the members would be elected.
“He [the successor] 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.” (‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Will and Testament, p. 11)
While the appointment of the successor is not tied to writing a will, it must be done during the life-time of the predecessor Guardian. Shoghi Effendi appointed the second Guardian of the Cause of God during his life-time. The fact that the former Hands of the Cause under the direction of Ruhiyyih Khanum, widow of the first Guardian, did not find His Will, must not be adduced as He had not written a Will. Shoghi Effendi always encouraged Bahá’ís to write a will according to the commandments of Bahá’u’lláh in the Most Holy Book: “Unto everyone hath been enjoined the writing of a will.” It is unlikely that He had not written a will. However, as mentioned before, the appointment of the Guardian’s successor does not need to be done by means of a will and testament. The following passage was written by Ruhiyyih Khanum. “A further large deposit, invested for safekeeping in Switzerland in both his and my name, I later turned over to the Universal House of Justice after its election”. (Ministry of the Custodians, p. 11) This may raise the question about the possibility that the Will of Shoghi Effendi containing the explanation of how He appointed his successor Mason Remey on 2 March 1951 was held in a safe deposit box at the same Swiss Bank which only could be accessed by Ruhiyyih Khanum. But she directed the former Hands to the Guardian’s safe and desk in His office. Shoghi Effendi never was silent. His writings are the best evidence. Shoghi Effendi, during and until the end of his 36-year ministry, had always made it quite clear that the line of Guardians would continue to the end of the Bahá’í Dispensation and had made many references to future Guardians in His Writings. Also, many Pilgrims’ Notes are testimonies written by the pilgrims to the Words of Shoghi Effendi about future Guardians and his emphasis on the continuation of the Guardianship to the end of the Bahá’í Dispensation.
One night the Guardian said, “Pilgrims’ Notes are very important. They should be eagerly received as they bring the Spirit of the Shrines, and the Station of the Guardianship, and the first-hand impressions which the cablegrams and letters cannot convey. Of course they cannot be authoritative, as they are not written by the Master or the Guardian, but they are very important, and should be so considered.” (Visiting the Bahá’í World by Ruth Moffett 1954-59, part II B http://bahailibrary.com/moffett_pilgrims_notes – 2) In 1957 when the first Guardian passed to the Abha Kingdom, the Hands who did not have and could not have administrative authority, justified their usurpation of the authority of the Guardian because of the situation which was portrayed by Ruhiyyih Khanum and the former Hands who followed her. Her false assertion was that after Shoghi Effendi there was no longer any authority. In doing this they (the Hands) ignored the fact that Shoghi Effendi had already established the highest administrative Body of the Faith.
Why would the Bahá’ís “cling to the Hands” as Ruhiyyih Khanum told the Bahá’í world to do in a telegram, instead of clinging to the supreme international institution of the Faith established by the late Guardian himself? If it was necessary for a group of nine persons to administer the affairs of the Faith, why should it not be the Universal House of Justice, in its embryonic form, similar to the status of the National and Local Bodies, especially when all the members of that International Body had been selected and appointed by the Guardian himself? The former Hands did not have any authority to say:
“We nominate and appoint from our own number to act on our behalf as the Custodians of the Bahá’í World Faith to exercise — subject to such directions and decisions as may be given from time to time by us as the Chief Stewards of the Bahá’í World Faith — all such functions, rights and powers in succession to the Guardian of the Bahá’í Faith,”
(The Ministry of the Custodians, p. 29)
The International Bahá’í Council was the legitimate, rightful and highest institution of the Bahá’í Faith, while in contrast the Hands of the Cause do not have administrative authority in the Faith. By now many know the famous admission of Ruhiyyih Khanum in this regard: “How to assume the reins of authority, with no document to support us…” (Ministry of the Custodians, p. 9)
It is of particular importance that they stripped themselves from their station as Hands of the Cause when they denied the fact that the first Guardian had appointed his successor by appointing Him as the Head of the embryonic Universal House of Justice, an Office, which can only be occupied by the Guardian.
“The Hand of Omnipotence hath established His Revelation upon an unassailable, an enduring foundation. Storms of human strife are powerless to undermine its basis, nor will men’s fanciful theories succeed in damaging its structure.” (Shoghi Effendi, The World Order of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 109)
March 20, 2017