Bahá'í Faith

This article is about the global religious community. For other related uses, see Bahai (disambiguation).
A white building with several columns and a domed roof
Seat of the Universal House of Justice, governing body of the Bahá'ís, in Haifa, Israel

The Bahá'í Faith ( Persian: بهائی‎‎ Bahā'i) is a monotheistic religion that emphasizes the spiritual unity of all humankind. [1] Three core principles establish a basis for Bahá'í teachings and doctrine: the unity of God, the unity of religion, and the unity of humanity. According to Bahá'í teachings, God is known by spiritual virtues such as truthfulness, kindness, unity, love, and justice, and the purpose of religion is to advance these virtues in humankind.

The Bahá'í Faith was announced by Bahá'u'lláh (1817-1892) in Baghdad, then a part of the Ottoman Empire, when in 1863 he declared himself He whom God shall make manifest, a messianic figure in the religion of Bábism. Bahá'u'lláh based this announcement on an experience he had previously while imprisoned in the Síyáh-Chál in Tehran, Persia, where he is said to have had a vision of the Maid of Heaven. Opposition from Islamic clergy especially out of Persia meant that early Bahá'ís faced heavy persecution, and this oppression continues in modern Iran. Bahá'u'lláh himself was imprisoned and exiled from Persia subsequent to a failed assassination attempt by some Bábis of Naser al-Din Shah Qajar as part of an action aimed at the entire Bábí community and ultimately spent his last 40 years under various forms of house arrest in the Ottoman Empire. Letters written by Bahá'u'lláh to various individuals, including some heads of state, have been collected and canonized into a body of Bahá'í scripture that includes works by his son `Abdu'l-Bahá, and also the Báb, who is regarded as Bahá'u'lláh's forerunner.

At the time of Bahá'u'lláh's death in 1892, the religion was mostly confined to the Persian and Ottoman empires. By the 1910s it had gained a foothold in Europe and America and by the 1960s it had been established all over the world. There are estimated at least 5 million Bahá'ís around the world in more than 200 countries and territories. [2] [note 1]

According to Bahá'í doctrine, religious history is seen as having unfolded through a series of divine messengers, each of whom established a religion that was suited to the needs of the time and to the capacity of the people to understand it. The Buddha, Jesus, and Muhammad, for example, are looked upon as the most recent messengers in the period before the Báb and Bahá'u'lláh. In Bahá'í belief, each consecutive messenger was a prophet of messengers to follow, and Bahá'u'lláh's life and teachings fulfilled the end-time promises of earlier scriptures. Humanity is understood to be in a process of collective evolution, and the need of the present time is for the gradual establishment of peace and unity on a global scale. [3]

Etymology

In English-language use, the word Bahá'í  is used either as an adjective to refer to the Bahá'í Faith or as a term for a follower of Bahá'u'lláh. The word is not a noun meaning the religion as a whole. [4] It is derived from the Arabic Bahá' (بهاء), meaning "glory" or "splendor", although the word Bahá'í  is actually derived from its use as a loan word in Persian, in particular the "'i" suffix is Persian rather than Arabic. [note 2] The term "Bahaism" (or "Baha'ism") is still used, mainly in a pejorative sense. [5] [6]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Baha’i
العربية: بهائية
aragonés: Bahaísmo
অসমীয়া: বাহাই ধৰ্ম
asturianu: Fe Bahá'i
azərbaycanca: Bəhailik
Bân-lâm-gú: Baha'i
беларуская: Бахаі
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Багаі
български: Бахайство
bosanski: Baha'i
català: Fe bahà'í
čeština: Bahá'í
Cymraeg: Bahá'í
dansk: Bahá'i
Deutsch: Bahaitum
eesti: Baha'i usk
Ελληνικά: Μπαχάι Πίστη
español: Bahaísmo
Esperanto: Bahaa Kredo
euskara: Bahaismo
فارسی: بهائیت
Fiji Hindi: Bahá'í Faith
français: Bahaïsme
Fulfulde: Bahai
galego: Fe Bahá'í
한국어: 바하이 신앙
Հայերեն: Բահաի
हिन्दी: बहाई धर्म
hrvatski: Bahá'í
Bahasa Indonesia: Baha'i
interlingua: Fide Bahá'í
íslenska: Bahá'í trúin
italiano: Bahá'í
ქართული: ბაჰაიზმი
कॉशुर / کٲشُر: بہائیت
қазақша: Баһаи
kernowek: Fay Bahá'í
Kiswahili: Baha'i
Kongo: Kibaha
Kurdî: Behayî
Ladino: Baha'i
latviešu: Bahāisms
Lëtzebuergesch: Baha'i
magyar: Bahái hit
Malagasy: Baha'i
مصرى: بهائيه
Bahasa Melayu: Bahá'í
Mirandés: Fé Bahá'í
Nederlands: Bahai
नेपाल भाषा: बहाइ धर्म
norsk bokmål: Bahá'í
norsk nynorsk: Bahai
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Bahoiylik
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਬਹਾਈ ਧਰਮ
Pälzisch: Bahai
پښتو: بهايي
Patois: Ba'ai Fiet
ភាសាខ្មែរ: ជំនឿបាហៃ
Tok Pisin: Bahai
Plattdüütsch: Bahá'í
polski: Bahaizm
português: Fé bahá'í
русский: Бахаи
sicilianu: Fidi Baha'i
Simple English: Bahá'í Faith
slovenčina: Bahájska viera
slovenščina: Bahajstvo
Soomaaliga: Baha'i
کوردیی ناوەندی: ئایینی بەھایی
српски / srpski: Бахаи вера
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Bahaizam
Basa Sunda: Baha'i
suomi: Bahai-usko
svenska: Bahá'í
татарча/tatarça: Бәһаи
тоҷикӣ: Баҳоио
Türkçe: Bahâîlik
українська: Бахаїзм
اردو: بہائی
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: باھائىي
Tiếng Việt: Bahá'í
Võro: Baha'i usk
Yorùbá: Baháí
粵語: 大同教
Zazaki: Bahá'í
žemaitėška: Bahaju viera