In short

The Nineteen Day Fast is a period of nineteen days of the year during which members of the Bahá'í Faith adhere to a fast from sunrise to sunset. Along with obligatory prayer, it is one of the greatest obligations of a Bahá'í, and its primary purpose is spiritual: to invigorate the soul and bring the person closer to God. Fasting was instituted by the Báb and accepted by Baháʼu'lláh, the founder of the Baháʼí Faith, who set forth its rules in his book of laws, the Kitáb-i-Aqdas. The nineteen days of fasting take place immediately before the start of the Bahá'í New Year, at the vernal equinox (March 19–21, depending on the year).

The nineteen day fast

Nineteen-day fasting to invigorate the soul

The Báb, the founder of the Bábí faith, instituted the Badí` calendar with 19 months of 19 days in his book the Persian Bayán, and declared that the last month would be a period of fasting. The Bab said that the true meaning of fasting was to abstain from everything except the love of God's messengers. The Báb also declared that the continuation of the fast depended on the approval of a messianic figure, one whom God will make manifest. Baháʼu'lláh, the founder of the Baháʼí Faith, who claimed to be the One predicted by the Báb, accepted the fast, but modified many of its details and regulations.

Bahá'í fasting resembles the fasting practices of several other religions. Lent is a time of fasting for Christians, Yom Kippur and many other holidays for Jews, and the fast of Ramadan is practiced by Muslims. Bahá'í fasting most closely resembles the fast of Ramadan, except that the fasting period is defined as a fixed Bahá'í month, whereas Muslims fast during a lunar month, the specific Gregorian dates of which vary from year to year. the other.

Baháʼu'lláh established the guidelines for fasting in the Kitáb-i-Aqdas, His book of laws. Fasting is observed from sunrise to sunset during the Bahá'í month of ʻAlaʼ (between March 1/2 and March 19/20) and is complete abstention from food and drink. Observance of the fast is an individual obligation and binds all Bahá'ís who have reached the age of 15 until the age of 70; it is not enforceable by Bahá'í administrative institutions. Various exemptions are granted to the sick, travelers and others (see below).

While Bahá'ís are permitted to fast at other times of the year, fasting at other times is not encouraged and is rarely practiced; Baháʼu'lláh permitted vows of fasting, which was a Muslim practice, but stated that He preferred that these vows be "directed toward purposes that will benefit humanity."

Along with obligatory prayer, it is one of the greatest obligations of a Bahá'í and aims to bring the person closer to God. Shoghi Effendi, the leader of the Bahá'í Faith in the first half of the 20th century, explains that fasting "is essentially a period of meditation and prayer, of spiritual recuperation, during which the believer must endeavor to do the necessary readjustments in one’s inner life.” life, and to refresh and invigorate the spiritual forces latent in one's soul. Its meaning and purpose are therefore fundamentally of a spiritual character. Fasting is symbolic and recalls abstinence from selfish and carnal desires.

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Today, Baha'is begin the 19-day fast. This spiritual retreat invigorates the soul and brings people closer to God. This retreat was established by the Báb and Baháʼu'lláh, the founders. #mythology #myth #legend #calendar #2March #bahai #nineteendayfeast


The nineteen day fast