Respect For All Religions

October 4, 2021
Respect For All Religions

Impressions on ‘Abdu’l-Baha

Respect For All Religions

‘Abdu’l-Baha avoided politics but openly met with political figures of all backgrounds in an effort to promote peace. Although against colonialism, the Baha’i Faith emerged during the nineteenth century “The Age of Colonialism/Imperialism.” Responding to Jewish return to Palestine, He remarked that they should, “mingle with the other races and live in unity with them.” He developed a working relationship with Sir Herbert Samuel who was one of the prominent thinkers and activists and was elected as the first supreme commissar of Palestine by the United Kingdom dated June, 30, 1920 A.D.

Source: The Chosen Highway

Letter from Sir Herbert Samuel, G.C.B., C.B.E. [later titled Viscount Samuel of Carmel.]

“In 1920 I was appointed as the first High Commissioner for Palestine under the British Mandate, and took an early opportunity of paying a visit to ‘Abdu’l-Baha Effendi at his home in Haifa. I had for some time been interested in the Baha’i Movement, and felt privileged by the opportunity of making the acquaintance of its head. I had also an official reason as well as a personal one. ‘Abdu’l-Baha had been persecuted by the Turks. A British regime had now been substituted in Palestine for the Turkish. Toleration and respect for all religions had long been a principle of British rule wherever it extended; and the visit of the High Commissioner was intended to be a sign to the population that the adherents of every creed would be able to feel henceforth that they enjoyed the respect and could count upon the good will of the new Government of the land. I was impressed, as was every visitor, by ‘Abdu’l-Baha’s dignity, grace and charm. Of moderate stature, his strong features and lofty expression lent to his personality an appearance of majesty. In our conversation he readily explained and discussed the principal tenets of Baha’i, answered my inquiries and listened to my comments. I remember vividly that friendly interview of sixteen years ago, in the simple room of the villa, surrounded by gardens, on the sunny hillside of Mount Carmel. I was glad I had paid my visit so soon, for in 1921 ‘Abdu’l-Baha died. I was only able to express my respect for his creed and my regard for his person by coming from the capital to attend his funeral. A great throng had gathered together, sorrowing for his death, but rejoicing also for his life.”

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