Riḍván is The Greatest Baha’i Festival. It is a 12 day commemoration for Bahá’u’lláh’s declaration that he was the Manifestation of God at his time, on his way from Baghdad to Istanbul in 1863, observed from the sunset of the 20th of April to the sunset of the 2nd of May.
Two hundred years ago, in the autumn of 1817, a child was born in Persia who would come to be known as Bahá’u’lláh, the bearer of a new message from God that calls on all the peoples on the earth to recognize their common humanity in a world that is rapidly shrinking. In October of this year, Bahá’ís all over the world—including those in Lane County—will invite friends, family members, neighbors and coworkers to join them in celebrating the bicentenary of the birth of Bahá’u’lláh.
In preparation for this glorious event, the U.S. Bahá’í national community has launched a website of Bicentenary Resources, “designed to provide creative ways to reach out to ‘to the widest possible cross-section of society and to all those with whom [we] share a connection’ with loving invitations to join us in celebrating the appearance, exactly two centuries ago, of a wondrous new Manifestation of God.”
This national website has a rich assortment of extracts from the Bahá’í writings for guidance and reflection, answers to frequently asked questions, and ideas for celebrations and special events. New materials, reports of activities and further suggestions will be added right up to the time of the celebration on October 21-22, both by the Bahá’í National Center team and local Bahá’í communities.
In the same way, the appearance of Bahá’u’lláh was like a new springtime which appeared with holy breezes, with the hosts of everlasting life, and with heavenly power. (Abdu’l-Baha, Some Answered Questions, p. 145)