A Course on Teaching - D Bradford
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'Abu'l-Fadl's companions urged him to pay no attention to the man. They explained that he was only a "misguided Babi.." But for Abu'l-Fadl, the encounter was important. Naturally, he had known of the Bahá'í Faith and had been approached by Bahá'í teachers before. But this brief conversation, in which he was defeated in argument by a blacksmith, alerted him to the subtlety of the Bahá'í message-and to the bankruptcy of a narrow, literal, unthinking reliance on scripture and tradition. He began to study the Bahá'í religion seriously. In 1876, he found his faith and became a believer. (1:9)

'There followed, for Abu'l-Fadl, a lifetime of service to his new religion. First, at the direction of Baha'u'llah himself, he traveled in Iran,. and then in the Russian realms of Ashkabad, Samarqand, and Bukhara. ''Abdu'l-Baha called him to Palestine, to Cairo, and then to New York. But, Bahá'ís have argued since over whose services to the Faith were greater, Abu'l-Fadl's or those of the blacksmith who taught him the Message.'" (1:10)

"Many of the local villagers came to the classes which were held in a very large fale. On Saturday night, the Bahá'ís were having a fia fia (party, literally it means happy happy), when a Christian minister came in and shouted for us to stop the party. It was 10:00 p.m., curfew time. The chief of the village, who was really enjoying himself, got up and told the minister to go home. "This is a Bahá'í fia fia," he said, "and if we want, we'll go on all night." The minister was terribly angry and left. The next morning in his sermon, he attacked the Bahá'ís as people of the devil, "Who don't believe in God." That's where he made his mistake. Five of the villagers, who had been coming to classes, became Bahá'ís that day. The following week, the Bahá'ís in Apia got word that the next Sunday the minister had again attacked the Bahá'ís. During his sermon, he told his flock, "Any Bahá'í who comes into this village should be killed!" Almost immediately, there were enough new Bahá'ís to form a Local Spiritual Assembly." [Gina Mauriello Garcia, Adventures of Dawn-Breaker 109-110. (1:11)

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