This is the sixth post in a series of posts telling the life story of Zaynu’l-Muqarrabín.

Jináb-i-Zayn had returned home after his life changing events. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá explains, “He rid himself of all impeding veils; his doubts dispelled, he began to extol and glorify the Beauty promised from of old. In his own home, and at Isfahan, he became notorious for declaring far and wide that the advent of the long-desired One had come to pass.

Shortly after, Mirza Sulayman came to visit Najafabad. As was customary in those days, Mullas, businessmen and others from the village came to meet and converse with the educated visitor. Those present all agreed that Mirza Sulayman was a wise and knowledgeable person. Some understood the message he subtly delivered and become believers. However others complained to the mayor who ordered the arrest of Mirza Sulayman. As he had already left the village, Jináb-i-Zayn and some of the newly converted friends were arrested but released after paying a fine.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá writes further, “By the hypocrites, he was mocked, cursed and tormented. As for the people, “the mass, as a snake in the grass,” who had worshiped him before, now rose up to do him harm. Every day brought on a fresh cruelty, a new torment from his oppressors. He endured it all, and went on teaching with great eloquence. He remained staunch, unmoved, as their wrath increased. In his hands he held out a full cup of Divine glad tidings, offering to all who came that heady draught of the knowledge of God. He was utterly without fear, knew nothing of danger, and swiftly followed the holy path of the

Jináb-i-Zayn asked some of the Bábis about the successor of the Báb. He was simply informed that Azal had been appointed as successor but was not given any further explanations as to why. Therefore Jináb-i-Zayn wished to meet Azal. Rumours were that Azal was somewhere in the Baghdad area but did not grant anyone permission to visit him. Nevertheless, Jináb-i-Zayn travelled to Baghdad in hope of being granted a visit. Upon arriving, he could not find Azal (this was during the time the Blessed Beauty had retreated to the mountains of Kurdistan). Having failed to find him, Jináb-i-Zayn left for Karbala where he met Siyyid Muhammad-i-Isfahani. Jináb-i-Zayn notes that Siyyid Muhammad considered himself a follower of Azal and considered his own station to be above other Bábis.

While Jináb-i-Zayn was in Iraq, some troublesome events took place in his home village. The Mujtahid together with some Siyyids and other village people had gone to Jináb-i-Zayn’s home in search of proof of him being a Bábi (to find Writings of the Báb). They did not find any evidence but plundered his home and destroyed his house. Some of the Bábis were taken as prisoners and sent to Isfahan.

The Mujtahid of Najafabad requested the mayor, Cheraq Ali Khan, to approve the execution of the Bábis on the grounds that they were followers of Jináb-i-Zayn. The mayor asked for Jináb-i-Zayn but was told that he had left for Baghdad. The Mujtahid proposed that they bring back Jináb-i-Zayn. However the mayor did not agree and said, “I am very surprised by your suggestion. You want us to send someone to Baghdad, a place where they can openly say they are Bábis without being bothered, to bring back Jináb-i-Zayn without even knowing if he is a Bábi or not?

The Mujtahid failed to achieve his objectives but had to resolve the matter of the Bábis under his arrest. As the mayor did not help him, he sought the aid of the Mullah of Isfahan. He managed to convince the Mulla to issue a “fatwa” that decreed the execution of the Bábis or rather “the followers of Jináb-i-Zayn” as they saw them. It happened that at about the same time the “fatwa” was issued, the mayor (Cheraq Ali Khan) had been relieved of his duties and replaced by a certain Hamza Mirza. The Mujtahid therefore went to the new mayor, seeking the fatwa to be carried out. The new mayor did not comply, as he wanted to hear the arguments of both sides. He therefore brought two of the Bábis for questioning. He could not find any proof or even signs of disrespect or infidelity from the Bábis. After another round of questioning, the mayor revoked the fatwa and ordered the release of the Bábis.

Jináb-i-Zayn, having failed to attain his objective in Iraq, headed back to Iran. On his way from Karbala to Iran, he met a Bábi who informed him of the events that had recently taken place in Najafabad and Isfahan. Jináb-i-Zayn realized that his return would worsen the situation for himself and anyone associated with him. Realizing this, he returned back to Iraq and resided near the Kazimain area of Baghdad (the Shrines of two Imams in Iraq).

By this time the Blessed Beauty had returned from His seclusion in the mountains. Jináb-i-Zayn was invited to meet the Blessed Beauty and was honoured by being in His Presence for about two hours. This was the first time Jináb-i-Zayn saw the Blessed Beauty but he was not aware of the Station of Bahá’u’lláh. Jináb-i-Zayn was still looking for the successor of the Báb and therefore sought the advice of the Blessed Beauty. He asked that if someone is seeking Azal, should he persist in trying or wait and be patient. The Blessed Beauty suggested waiting and having patience.