Interpretations of Holy Texts Provided in Some Answered Questions:
An Analytical Review

By Vahid Rafati

First presented at the Irfan Colloquia Session #93
Louhelen Bahá'í School: Davison, Michigan, USA
October 8–11, 2009
(see list of papers from #93)

    In the Writings of the Exalted Báb and in the Books and Tablets of the Blessed Beauty and `Abdu'l-Bahá, the interpretations and elucidations of the Holy texts of the past as well as explanations of, and commentary about, numerous Islamic traditions have a special place of importance. In fact dozens of texts issued from the pens of the Central Figures of the Bahá'í Faith are, in reality, commentary and interpretations of the holy writings of past.

    A passing review of the Writings of the Exalted Báb reveals that many of His most important and lengthiest works were devoted to the explanations and interpretations of the various chapters (sura) of Qurán, such as Baqara, Joseph, Kawthar and Al-`Asr, in order to expatiate upon the verities of this Faith in the context of the concepts and contents of those chapters, while at the same time divulging the verities inherent in those writings.

    The Blessed Beauty also has many such Writings, e.g. the Tablet interpreting the Sura Al-Shams, or the one explaining the verse "Kull'u'Ta`ám" (verse 93 of the Sura Ál-Imrán), as well as the Tablet interpreting the disconnected letters at the beginning of certain chapters (sura) of Qurán, and the tablet interpreting the Sura Al-Shams. Many important discussions on topics such as "Qiyámat" (Resurrection), "Khátimiyyat" (the Seal of the Prophets), "Yaumú'lláh" (the Day of God) and "Liqáyi Iláhí" (meeting God) in major Works of His, e. g. Iqán and the Tablet of Sheikh, can be keys to the interpretation of the Holy Scriptures of the past including the Old and the New Testament and the Holy Qurán.

    The number and variety of texts revealed about the interpretation of the Holy Books of the past points to the importance of the study of the manner in which the scriptures of the past are to be interpreted and understood. Also, using the modern science of Hermeneutics, these concepts need to be fully studied and thoroughly analyzed so that the enormous role of Bahá'í studies in understanding the scriptures of past dispensations may become evident.

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