After having lived in many countries, traveled through various cultures, and read piles of academic books it’s always humbling to discover that there’s still basic knowledge in this world that I haven’t acquired.

Martyrdom of Bab

Mount Carmel is a place of pilgrimage

Today is the Martyrdom of the Bab, (according to the BBC: “a major holy day”) and until this morning I had never heard about it. My immediate reaction was skepticism: the day must not be that major…Turns out, Martyrdom of the Bab is not only a holiday I’ve never heard of, but that it’s a part of the Baha’i fate, a religion completely unknown to me.

And, this religion is not even a very distant one: there are approximately 6 million Baha’is in the world, 6,000 of them in the UK. Realising that there is a world religion out there (or, out here, in London, probably!) which I had never heard of felt the same as finding out that Pluto is no longer a planet. The row of paper mache planets I had built in third grade is now dated and inaccurate because it includes Pluto, a whole extra paper mache ball which, I found out a few years ago, has not been considered a planet since 2006.

Anyway, I am, and was, both dumbfounded and thrilled. Today is the Martyrdom of the Bab and I looked into it a bit further…