The Bahá’í Faith

The Official Website of the Worldwide Bahá’í Community

What Bahá’ís Believe

Bahá’u’lláh and His Covenant

‘Abdu’l-Bahá – The Perfect Exemplar

Articles and Resources

A selection of readings, essays, and resource materials offering further exploration of the life, mission and legacy of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

Writings and Talks of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

From Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

This collection includes over two hundred letters written by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá on subjects such as the life and mission of Bahá’u’lláh, guidance for individuals, education and science.

From Tablets of the Divine Plan

This series of fourteen letters addressed to the Bahá’ís of the United States and Canada during World War I became the charter for the growth of the Bahá’í community throughout the world.

From The Secret of Divine Civilization

In this book, written after Bahá’u’lláh addressed the rulers of the earth, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá presents a coherent programme for the regeneration of society, built upon universal education and the eradication of ignorance and fanaticism.

From the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

In His Will and Testament, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá described His circumstances, refined the structure of the Bahá’í administrative order, and appointed His grandson, Shoghi Effendi, as His successor. The document was written in three parts between 1901 and 1908.

From ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s Tablet to Dr. Auguste Forel

A philosophical treatise written by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in September 1921 in answer to questions put to Him by the noted Swiss psychologist, this document described the differences between the kingdoms within creation, the spiritual nature of humanity and the existence of God.

From ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s Tablet to The Hague

In this Tablet addressed to the Central Organization for a Durable Peace at The Hague, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá places the attainment of international peace within the context of the need for wider political, economic and cultural change. He also stated that the newly created League of Nations was too restricted to realize peace.

From Memorials of the Faithful

This collection of eulogies of over 70 early Bahá’ís was originally delivered as a series of talks to gatherings of Bahá’ís in Haifa during the early years of World War I.

From A Traveler’s Narrative

An early narrative of Bábí and Bahá’í history, this text was first published anonymously in 1890 as a historical account of the birth of a religion and a defence of the Faith’s pure motives.

From Paris Talks

‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s talks in the French capital covered a wide range of themes including human nature, the soul, the Prophets of God, and racial and religious prejudice. This compilation includes His addresses in Paris as well as selected other materials.

From The Promulgation of Universal Peace

A compilation of 139 talks and discourses given by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá during His travels in North America, which explore the fundamental principles of the Bahá’í Faith.

Other Resource Materials

Gathered below are selected historical materials, articles, and essays, which further explore the life of the ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá in the words of Bahá’u’lláh

These selections provide a glimpse of the relationship between Father and Son, between a Messenger of God and the one He chose to be the perfect Exemplar of His teachings.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá in the words of Shoghi Effendi

Shoghi Effendi described ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, his Grandfather, the unerring Interpreter of Bahá’u’lláh’s Word, and the embodiment of every Bahá’í ideal. Other writings from the Guardian about the Centre of the Covenant have been gathered in this collection.

The Passing of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

The news of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s passing on November 28, 1921, inspired an unprecedented event of unity among the Jewish, Christian, Muslim and Druze communities of Haifa.

The Way of the Master

In this penetrating and moving essay, George Townshend reflects upon ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s character and the lessons and example He offered for the lives of people everyone.

Memories of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

In this essay, Ali M.Yazdi (1899-1978), shares some of his memories of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

A Day in the Life of the Master

In this historical narrative, Myron Phelps—a New York attorney—records his experience travelling to ‘Akká in the early 20th century to observe ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s daily life and learn lessons from Him in person.

Memories of the Sojourn of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in Paris

‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s first stay in Paris in 1911 was documented by Lady Blomfield, a Bahá’í from London, who penned this memoir of the four month visit. The notes taken by her daughters and their friend Beatrice Platt were later published as the book Paris Talks.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá – Some contemporary accounts

‘Abdu’l-Bahá made a lasting impression on those who met Him, as is documented in these selected excerpts.

Commentaries on the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and Other Literature

The Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

In this essay, Amín Banání explores the body of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s Writings, the wisdom it offers, the form it takes, its spirit and larger significance.

The Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

In this “document of momentous and incalculable significance,” writes Hasan M. Balyuzi, there are three provisions which ‘Abdu’l-Bahá created for protection of the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh after His passing.

Six Books About ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

In the early years of the 20th century, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s character and activities inspired His followers in both East and West to follow His example. Many books were written of early Bahá’ís’ experiences in His presence. This overview by Kazem and Firuz Kazemzadeh reviews five contemporary accounts of the life of the Master and a full biography which had recently been released at the time of writing.

Further Reading

Bibliography of Recommended Reading

A list of further reading on this subject is available here.

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