Sen's daily

October 27, 2013

Passing of Dr. Ahang Rabbani

Editorial, October 27, 2013

Dr. Ahang Rabbani, a celebrated and prolific Bahai scholar, died in Texas, at 5.30 am on October 26, 2013, following a long battle with cancer. He was just 57 years old. He is survived by his wife, Tahirih Baker-Rabbani, his sons Bayan and Tebyan Rabbani, his sisters Ranneh Kayfan and Naghmeh (Melody) Astani, with whom he co-authored some of his many publications, and an extended family. The funeral will take place Friday November 1st at 11.30 a.m. at the Calvary Hill Funeral Home in Houston.

The following tribute was composed by a number of his friends and colleagues in the field of Bahai Studies:

Ahang Rabbani was a member of two online scholarly communities: Tarikh, a listserver for those interested in Bahá’í history, and Tarjuman, a listserver devoted to translation of Bahá’í scriptural and historical texts. Both communities were deeply saddened and grieved by the news of his passing, because Ahang was instrumental in starting them up and was a central member of both. He often commented about drafts of translations or articles and very generously offered many of his own for collective discussion and improvement. All of us were immensely impressed by his energy and his prodigious output of translations, both of sacred texts and historical materials. An independent scholar, he has enriched and increased access to the revelation and to the sources of Bahá’í history for the English speaking friends, a significant contribution that will be remembered by historians and academics for years to come. He also was a founding member of the Texas chapter of the Association for Bahá’í Studies. There were many notable online tributes. One friend said that his passing “is a great loss to all of us and to Baha’i scholarship in general.” Another said that Ahang “pushed me to translate, in collaboration with his own energetic self . . . Ahang provided the oomph for me to persevere, to get going, not to stop … He was thousands of miles away and yet he was prodding me to accelerate, not to procrastinate, not to feel inept and useless.” A third contributor said, “His presence is simply irreplaceable. I will miss him dearly, and hope that one day I will have the honor and pleasure of meeting him again in the Abha Kingdom.

The Tarikh and Tarjuman communities grieve his loss, pray for his soul’s progress, and beg his continued assistance in their endeavors from the great beyond.

We dare not, in this Day, lift the veil that concealeth the exalted station which every true believer can attain …. By the righteousness of the one true God! The very breath of these souls is in itself richer than all the treasures of the earth. Happy is the man that hath attained thereunto, and woe betide the heedless. (Gleanings, VI, pp. 9-10)

Please feel free to use the comments section below for your personal tributes and reminiscences.

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Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

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  1. Thank you for the news and the very appropriate quote.

    Comment by César — October 27, 2013 @ 21:14 | Reply

  2. our deepest prayers & condolences to Tahirih and her family.

    Comment by Diane Ancker & Kenny Broussard — October 28, 2013 @ 20:29 | Reply

  3. What a brilliant, kind and gentle soul. He will be greatly missed.

    Comment by Sam Murray — October 28, 2013 @ 23:37 | Reply

  4. It brings joy to my heart to know my son, Gavin Bad’i will be in the company of such a brilliant soul.. Allah’u’Abha!

    Comment by Lorry cornish — October 29, 2013 @ 21:14 | Reply

  5. All are saddened by the loss of dear Ahang, a magnificent individual who was as kind as he was brilliant. His scholarship will remain an inspiration to all forever more. The only consolation I find in his passing is that he is now in the embrace of his Lord and loved ones. Baha’u’llah details the mysteries of the spiritual realm, describing mysteries that we humans cannot understand in this earthly world, but that we will discover in the heavenly world. In that non-physical world we will learn the secrets of truth. There, we are told, we will recognize and discover persons with whom we have been associated in this physical world. We will be “favored with insight and will become acquainted with all the mysteries of God’s worlds, even to behold the beauty of God…”
    Enjoy the beauty, Ahang. You are loved and will be missed.

    Comment by Muhtadia (Tadia) Rice — October 29, 2013 @ 23:32 | Reply

  6. Saddened by this news…pray that he assists us from above in our progress..condolences to his beloved family

    Comment by Mona — October 30, 2013 @ 16:49 | Reply

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