Ridvan Devotional Program
A Baha'i Holy Day Devotional Program for the Festival Ridvan
The arrival of Bahá'u'lláh in the Najibiyyih Garden, subsequently designated by His followers the Garden of Ridvan, signalizes the commencement of what has come to be recognized as the holiest and most significant of all Bahá'í festivals, the festival commemorating the Declaration of His Mission to His companions. - Shoghi Effendi, God Passes By, p. 151
“I entrust to your keeping this city of Baghdad, in the state ye now behold it, when from the eyes of friends and strangers alike, crowding its housetops, its streets and markets, tears like the rain of spring are flowing down, and I depart. With you it now rests to watch lest your deeds and conduct dim the flame of love that gloweth within the breasts of its inhabitants” - Bahá’u’lláh, quoted in God Passes By, Page: 149
Bahá’u’lláh Himself acclaims this historic occasion as the “Most Great Festival,” the “King of Festivals,” the “Festival of God.” He has also characterized it as the Day whereon “all created things were immersed in the sea of purification,”
In one of His specific Tablets, He has referred to it as the Day whereon “the breezes of forgiveness were wafted over the entire creation.”
“The purpose underlying all creation is the revelation of this most sublime, this most holy Day, the Day known as the Day of God, in His Books and Scriptures – the Day which all the Prophets, and the Chosen Ones, and the holy ones, have wished to witness.”
- From Advent of Divine Justice p77
He is God! Thou seest, O my Lord, the assemblage of Thy loved ones, the company of Thy friends, gathered by the precincts of Thine all-sufficing Shrine, and in the neighborhood of Thine exalted garden, on a day among the days of Thy Ridván Feast – that blessed time when Thou didst dawn upon the world, shedding thereon the lights of Thy holiness, spreading abroad the bright rays of Thy oneness, and didst issue forth from Baghdad, with a majesty and might that encompassed all mankind; with a glory that made all to fall prostrate before Thee, all heads to bow, every neck to bend low, and the gaze of every man to be cast down. They are calling Thee to mind and making mention of Thee, their breasts gladdened with the lights of Thy bestowals, their souls restored by the evidences of Thy gifts, speaking Thy praise, turning their faces toward Thy Kingdom, humbly supplicating Thy lofty Realms.
- `Abdu’l-Bahá: Memorials of the Faithful, Pages: 175-177.
Say: The Most Great Festival is, indeed, the King of Festivals. Call ye to mind, O people, the bounty which God hath conferred upon you. Ye were sunk in slumber, and lo! He aroused you by the reviving breezes of His Revelation, and made known unto you His manifest and undeviating Path. - Bahá’u’lláh: The Kitab-i-Aqdas
To Israel He (Bahá’u’lláh) was neither more nor less than the incarnation of the "Everlasting Father," the "Lord of Hosts" come down "with ten thousands of saints"; to Christendom Christ returned "in the glory of the Father," to Shi'ah Islam the return of the Imam Husayn; to Sunni Islam the descent of the "Spirit of God" (Jesus Christ); to the Zoroastrians the promised Shah-Bahram; to the Hindus the reincarnation of Krishna; to the Buddhists the fifth Buddha.
- Shoghi Effendi: God Passes By, Pages: 94-96
The Festival of Ridván is come and the splendour of the light of God is shining from the invisible horizon of His mercy. The overflowing grace of the Lord of oneness is pouring down copiously from the unseen world and the glad-tidings of the Kingdom are coming in from all countries. The resplendent morn that betokens the advancement of the Cause of God and heralds the exaltation of His Word is dawning in every region. Praise be to God that the fame of the Ancient Beauty - may my life be offered up for His loved ones - has been noised abroad in the world and the glory of His Cause is spread far and wide throughout the East and the West. These joyous developments will indeed gladden the hearts of His loved ones.
- Shoghi Effendi: Bahiyyih Khanum, Page: 112