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The Festival of Ridvan is considered the greatest festival in Baha'a Faith. It is a 12-day long festival and starts from April 21 and culminates at sunset May 2. The first, ninth and twelfth days are consecrated for special worship and service.

Ridvan marks the public declaration of Baha'u'llah to his claim as the great messenger of God, aThe Promised One of All Religions,a, that the Bab had predicted in 1844.


Baha'a believe that while Baha'u'llah was in imprisonment in 1853, God revealed to him that he was to be that Promised One. However, Baha'u'llah kept the revelation a secret for ten years after his release. But, inspite of his silence he became extremely influential with the people. This prompted authorities in Baghdad to send him and his followers to Constantinople.

Before his departure, in 1863, Baha'u'llah went to a garden, now famous as aGarden of Ridvana. Ridvan means paradise, good pleasure and splendor. Baha'u'llah spent 12 days in the garden where people from all walks of life came to pay their respect. At one point in this period, Baha'u'llah declared to some of the people gathered that he was the Promised One.


Baha'a have no rituals, so there aren't many traditions, but most Baha'a bodies do hold elections for their governing bodies on the first day of Ridvan.

People also observe meeting and prayers on bahai ridvan. Feasting, dining and merry making are also the essential part of the festivities. Some also give gifts to friends and relatives and alms to the poor and the needy.