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The Process of Revelation

How the Words of Bahá'u'lláh Were Recorded

Baha'u'llah handwriting
An example of Bahá'u'lláh's own handwriting.

A unique feature of the Revelation of Bahá'u'lláh is the authenticity of its revealed Word. Unlike the teachings of Christ, for example, which were written down decades after they were uttered, the words of Bahá'u'lláh were recorded and authenticated at the time they were revealed.

The process of revelation--as Bahá'ís term the act of bringing forth the Word of God--is described in several historical documents. One observer recorded the following:

"Mirza Aqa Jan (Bahá'u'lláh's personal secretary) had a large ink-pot the size of a small bowl. He also had available about ten to twelve pens and large sheets of paper in stacks. In those days all letters which arrived for Bahá'u'lláh were received by Mirza Aqa Jan. He would bring these into the presence of Bahá'u'lláh and, having obtained permission, would read them.

Afterwards [Bahá'u'lláh] would direct him to take up his pen and record the Tablet which was revealed in reply...

"Such was the speed with which he used to write the revealed Word that the ink of the first word was scarcely yet dry when the whole page was finished. It seemed as if someone had dipped a lock of hair in the ink and applied it over the whole page."

After each period of Revelation, the original manuscript would be re-transcribed, with Bahá'u'lláh Himself overseeing and approving the final version.

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