The fatal flaw in Baha’i authority

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The basic problem of authority in the Baha’i Faith, with its false claim that those authorities are infallible, really becomes obvious when you consider the issue of the Guardianship, which Shoghi Effendi held from 1921 until his death in 1957. He was appointed to that position by his grandfather, Abdu’l-Baha.

O ye the faithful loved ones of Abdu’l-Baha! it is incumbent upon you to take the greatest care of Shoghi Effendi… For he is, after Abdu’l-Baha, the Guardian of the Cause of God… He that obeyeth him not, hath not obeyed God; he that turneth away from him, hath turned away from God and he that denieth him, hath denied the True One… All must seek guidance and turn unto the Center of the Cause and the House of Justice. And he that turneth unto whatsoever else is indeed in grievous error.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Will and Testament, pages 25-26)

Later, Shoghi Effendi himself wrote:

Divorced from the institution of the Guardianship the World Order of Baha’u’llah would be mutilated and permanently deprived of that hereditary principle which, as Abdu’l-Baha has written, has been invariably upheld by the Law of God. …Without such an institution the integrity of the Faith would be imperiled, and the stability of the entire fabric would be gravely endangered. its prestige would suffer, the means required to enable it to take a long, an uninterrupted view over a series of generations would be completely lacking, and the necessary guidance to define the sphere of the legislative action of its elected representatives would be totally withdrawn.
(Shoghi Effendi: World Order of Baha’u’llah, page 148 )

It stands to reason that if Shoghi Effendi must be obeyed absolutely as the representative of God’s will, then he himself must obey the Baha’i commandments that came before him. If he was disobedient to Baha’i laws, then no one should obey him.

Baha’ullah, the founder of the Baha’i Faith, stated in his book of laws, the Kitab-i-Aqdas, paragraph 109, “Unto everyone hath been enjoined the writing of a will.”

Likewise, Abdul-Baha, son of Baha’u’llah, in the very Will and Testament by which he appointed Shoghi Effendi to the Guardianship, stated: “It is incumbent upon the Guardian of the Cause of God to appoint in his own life-time him that shall become his successor, that differences may not arise after his passing. He that is appointed must manifest in himself detachment from all worldly things, must be the essence of purity, must show in himself the fear of God, knowledge, wisdom and learning. Thus, should the first-born of the Guardian of the Cause of God not manifest in himself the truth of the words:—“The child is the secret essence of its sire,” that is, should he not inherit of the spiritual within him (the Guardian of the Cause of God) and his glorious lineage not be matched with a goodly character, then must he, (the Guardian of the Cause of God) choose another branch to succeed him.” (Abd’ul-Baha. Will and Testament, p. 12.)

Shoghi Effendi did none of these things. He had no children, and in fact he expelled from the Faith as “Covenant-breakers” every other descendant of his own grandfather, thus betraying the Faith. When he died in 1957, he left no will and had appointed no successor, thus failing to obey the very Covenant he was expected to uphold.

With no further guidance from the Guardian, the Hands of the Cause of God that he had appointed to assist him did the only thing they could to keep the Baha’i Faith alive: They took over the Faith and arranged for the eventual election of the Universal House of Justice in 1963. But without a Guardian to preside over that body, it would never be in accordance with the very writings that established its authority. And the only ones who could be Guardian were the male descendants of Baha’ullah, all of whom were excluded from the Faith by the first Guardian!

Indeed, the simple fact that Shoghi Effendi disobeyed both Bahau’llah and Abd’ul-Baha by not leaving a will, by expelling all his own relatives from the Faith, and not appointing in his lifetime one of his brothers or male cousins as his sucessor to the Guardianship should be enough to demonstrate that there is NO “true” Baha’i Faith existing today. Its authority is meaningless by the testimony of its own history!

And perhaps this was inevitable, since Baha’ullah himself warned his successors in the Faith not to exceed the proper bounds of their authority. Referring again to the Kitab-i-Aqdas, we find this as paragraph 37:

“Whoso layeth claim to a Revelation direct from God, ere the expiration of a full thousand years, such a man is assuredly a lying impostor. We pray God that He may graciously assist him to retract and repudiate such claim. Should he repent, God will, no doubt, forgive him. If, however, he persisteth in his error, God will, assuredly, send down one who will deal mercilessly with him. Terrible, indeed, is God in punishing! Whosoever interpreteth this verse otherwise than its obvious meaning is deprived of the Spirit of God and of His mercy which encompasseth all created things. Fear God, and follow not your idle fancies. Nay, rather, follow the bidding of your Lord, the Almighty, the All-Wise. Erelong shall clamorous voices be raised in most lands. Shun them, O My people, and follow not the iniquitous and evil-hearted. This is that of which We gave you forewarning when We were dwelling in ‘Iráq, then later while in the Land of Mystery, and now from this Resplendent Spot.”  (Emphasis mine)

Since any Baha’i would affirm that Abdu’l-Baha is inferior in rank to Baha’u’llah, we have to apply consistent logic to the Baha’i Writings;  and when we do…..

“The sacred and youthful branch, the guardian of the Cause of God as well as the Universal House of Justice, to be universally elected and established, are both under the care and protection of the Abha Beauty, under the shelter and unerring guidance of His Holiness, the Exalted One (may my life be offered up for them both). Whatsoever they decide is of God. Whoso obeyeth him not, neither obeyeth them, hath not obeyed God; whoso rebelleth against him and against them hath rebelled against God; whoso opposeth him hath opposed God; whoso contendeth with them hath contended with God; whoso disputeth with him hath disputed with God; whoso denieth him hath denied God; whoso disbelieveth in him hath disbelieved in God; whoso deviateth, separateth himself and turneth aside from him hath in truth deviated, separated himself and turned aside from God. May the wrath, the fierce indignation, the vengeance of God rest upon him!” (Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha, Page 11 [Emphasis mine] )

There is no way that passage can be reconciled with the one of Baha’u’llah denying that anyone can recieve direct revelation from God before the passage of 1000 years. And that might explain why Shoghi Effendi died without issue at the relatively young age of 60, in the midst of the Ten Year World Crusade he was leading. He was probably struck down by God himself just as Baha’u’llah would have predicted. And despite the desperate efforts made ever since to teach and proclaim the Baha’i Faith under the Universal House of Justice, it remains to this day a small, cultlike body scattered over the world, with no potential to make any real difference in the world at large.

To all readers, I implore you to be fair in your judgement and search your feelings. The Baha’i Faith is a failure and you need not be bound by laws, authorities, or institutions that are not based on truth. If you belong to the mainstream Baha’i Faith that follows the Guardianship-less Universal House of Justice, or one of the splinter groups that rejected the authority of that body, the fact remains that you follow a spirtually dead faith and are totally wasting your time. The Baha’i Faith in its present form will never become the great religion of the world Baha’ullah and Abdu’l-Baha envisioned it to be, because Shoghi Effendi ruined it with his blind assumption of his own infallibility. His own relatives questioned his decisions and were expelled for doing that. If you cannot question authority, it can destroy you. Or, in this case, the credibility of the authority is destroyed and opposing it becomes a moral obligation. Let it be so!

——Written by Dale Husband


12 Principles of the Baha’i faith

1. The Oneness of Humanity

2. Independent, Unfettered Investigation of the Truth

3. Religion is Progressive, All having a Common Foundation

4. Religion must be the Source of Unity

5. True Science and True Religion must Correspond

6. The Equality of Men and Women

7. Removal of all Prejudice

8. Universal Peace upheld by a Spiritual World Government

9. Universal Compulsary Education

10. A Spiritual Solution to the Economic

Problem 11. A Universal Auxiliary Language

12. Universal House of Justice with the Davidic King


According to the divinely-conceived sacred and immutable provisions of the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, the Guardian of the Cause of God is designated as:

“The Center of the Cause of God.”

“The sign of God.”

“The expounder of the words of God.”

The “sacred head and the distinguished member for life” of the Universal House of Justice.

The only one who may “at his own discretion” exercise the “right to expel” any member of the Universal House of Justice who may “commit a sin, injurious to the common weal.”

The nominator and appointer of the Hands of the Cause.

The appointer “in his own life-time” of his successor.

The sole authorized recipient of the “fixed money offering” — the Huqúq’u’llah — “the Right of God” offered by the believers.

It is should be crystal clear that only a living Guardian can perform the above functions assigned by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and, for this reason, Shoghi Effendi, now in the other world, can no longer be considered the Guardian of the Faith, as falsely contended by some believers who occupy ill-gotten positions of authority in the Faith.

The following statements by Shoghi Effendi, as outlined in The Dispensation of Bahá’u’lláh, further stress the essentiality of the Guardianship to the World Order of Bahá’u’lláh:

in the verses of the Kitáb i-Aqdas the implications of which clearly anticipate the institution of the Guardianship . . .”

” . . . the twin pillars that support this mighty Administrative Structure–the institutions of the Guardianship and the Universal House of Justice.”

” . . . these two fundamental organs of the Will of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá [the Guardianship and the Universal House of Justice]. . .”

” . . . these twin institutions of the Administrative Order of Bahá’u’lláh [the Guardianship and the Universal House of Justice] should be regarded as divine in origin, essential in their functions and complementary in their aim and purpose. Their common, their fundamental object is to insure the continuity of that divinely-appointed authority that flows from the Source of our Faith, to safeguard the unity of its followers and to maintain the integrity and flexibility of its teachings.”

“Acting in conjunction with each other, these two inseparable institutions administer its affairs, coordinate its activities, promote its interests, execute its laws and defend its subsidiary institutions.”

“Severally, each operates within a clearly defined sphere of jurisdiction; each is equipped with its own attendant institutions–instruments designed for the effective discharge of its particular responsibilities and duties.”

“Each exercises, within the limitations imposed upon it, its powers, its authority, its rights and prerogatives.”

“Divorced from the institution of the Guardianship the World Order of Bahá’u’lláh would be mutilated and permanently deprived of that hereditary principle” which as ‘Abdu’l-Bahá has written, has been invariably upheld by the Law of God.”[ the Guardian-to-be inheriting his station from an appointment made ‘in his own life-time’ by his predecessor in office]

“Without such an institution, [the Guardianship] the integrity of the Faith would be imperilled and the stability of the entire fabric would be gravely endangered. Its prestige would suffer, the means required to enable it to take a long and uninterrupted view over a series of generations would be completely lacking, and the necessary guidance to define the sphere of the legislative action of its elected representatives would be totally withdrawn [the living Guardian providing this guidance when presiding as the irreplaceable and indispensable “sacred head” of the Universal House of Justice].

” . . .the Guardian of the Faith has been made the Interpreter of the Word” of God.

“The interpretation of the Guardian, functioning within his own sphere, is as authoritative and binding as the enactments of the International House of Justice. . . “

The Guardian “is bound to insist upon a reconsideration by them (the Universal House of Justice) of any enactment he conscientiously believes to conflict with the meaning and to depart from the spirit of Bahá’u’lláh’s revealed utterance.”

The above statements by Shoghi Effendi make it clear that the future World Order of Bahá’u’lláh can never become a reality with only a single institution — the Universal House of Justice — that has assumed both legislative and executive functions in directing the affairs of the Faith, and a body, moreover, that is obviously incomplete, deformed and fallible, without a living Guardian presiding as its “sacred head.” For the divinely-conceived, sacred and immutable provisions of the Will and Testament bequeathed to us by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá — the perfect Architect of the Administrative Order — call for twin institutions — the Guardianship and the Universal House of Justice — that are, as Shoghi Effendi has stated, “inseparable” neither of which “can, nor will ever, infringe upon the sacred and prescribed domain of the other.”

Lest the believers tend to elevate the Guardian to “a station coequal with those Whose words he is called upon to interpret” Shoghi Effendi has stressed that “He can exercise that right and discharge this obligation and yet remain inferior to both of Them in rank and different in nature” and has significantly promised that: “To the integrity of this cardinal principle of our Faith the words, the deeds of its present and FUTURE Guardians must abundantly testify,”

It should be clear from the foregoing that those who have abandoned the Guardianship have, in so doing, not only declared the major provisions of the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá null and void — a Document whose sacredness and immutability Shoghi Effendi has equated with Bahá’u’lláh’s Most Holy Book , the Kitáb-i-Aqdas — but repudiated, as well, the words of Shoghi Effendi quoted above. What greater violation of the Covenant of Bahá’u’lláh can there be than this?


1. The following statement is found in the renowned and well-known Haifa Notes of May Maxwell, Disciple of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, which were actually co-authored by her and her daughter Mary Maxwell who would soon after their pilgrimage in 1937 become the wife of Shoghi Effendi, the late Rúhíyyih Khanum:

“There was a danger that the friends might misunderstand the Master’s Will, and thus the ‘Dispensation of Bahá’u’lláh’ was written, Shoghi Effendi’s spiritual testament. He has fixed in it the relation of things to each other. We cannot go beyond what he has defined. However, the second Guardian can interpret the ‘Dispensation’ itself. He has the same promise to be the inspired interpreter. The Guardian is the interpreter, expounder of the Cause and the protector of the Cause.”

2. Emphasis has been added throughout for obvious reasons.

Joel Bray Marangella