Tahirih Teaching in Baghdad

Tahirih was a member of the privileged Bali Seri sect which gave her authority to teach in the holy cities around Karbila and Baghdad and access to the inner shrines in Karbila,.

She was an extremely gifted speaker, endowed with a mystical outlook which attracted a large following from all levels of society. Her extraordinary beauty and profound knowledge of theology disarmed the most learned clerics who chose to debate  her.

Once she declared her allegiance to the Bab’s Cause , however,  her public proclamations became  so controversial, she was placed under house arrest by the religious authorities of Karbila. Undeterred she applied for permission to move to Baghdad where she continued her rejection of the established laws of Islam in preparation for the new age of fulfillment ushered in by the declaration of the Bab.  One day she was giving a lecture behind a curtain, in the golden mosque in Baghdad, when Muhammad Shah accompanied by his personal Jewish physician passed by. The physician stopped and became a noted Babi after he listened to Tahirih’s sermon from behind the curtain.


In this painting we see Tahirih addressing a group of women behind a curtain in the golden mosque in Baghdad.


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