from the series of short articles about calendars
Baha’i faith commences on 21st of April of 1863 A.D. as the flower of Babism, a movement which had already appeared in 1844 A.D. The proponents of the Baha'i faith, known as Baha’is, amount to 7 million people around the world. The beliefs of Baha’is are based on the teaching of the Persian Mírzá Ḥusayn-`Alí Núrí (1817-1892), called Bahaú'llah (Glory of the God), who is considered as the follower of the Persian Siyyid `Alí Muhammad Shírází (1819-1850), called Bab (the gate).
The Baha'i Calendar starts in the spring equinox of 1844 AD (21st of March), with each year starting on the spring equinox computed through the algorithm used in the Persian Calendar. Year 1844 A.D (year of the Declaration of Bab) is the year 1 of Baha'i's, so 2018 A.D. is 175 B.E. (Bab Era). Each year consists of 19 months of 19 days each, with a complement of 4 or 5 days in regular or leap years respectively. Years are set in 19-year cycles, called Vahid cycles and the Vahid cycles are set in 19-Vahid super-cycles, called Kull-i-Shay cycles. This obsession of Baha’is with the number 19 is based on the total number of the teacher Bab and his 18 disciples, called Letters of the Living. Besides, number 19 is one of the most important numbers in astronomy and calendars, known since 5th century BCE. The Metonic cycle of 19 years signifies the realignment of the phases of the Moon to the dates of the solar tropical year, used in the lunisolar calendars of the antiquity (Babylonian, Attic) until now (Jewish).
Days, months and years are called through virtues' names, giving to the Baha'i religion a taste of universality, mentioning ideas and properties that are commonly adopted.
The names of the 7 days as units of a week (Sunday to Saturday) are Jamál (Beauty), Kamál (Perfection), Fiḍál (Grace), ‘Idál (Justice), Istijlál (Majesty), Istiqlál (Independence), Jalál (Glory).
The names of the 19 days as units of the month, as well as the names of the 19 months of a year are Bahá (Splendour), Jalál (Glory), Jamál (Beauty), ‘Aẓamat (Grandeur), Núr (Light), Raḥmat (Mercy), Kalimát (Words), Kamál (Perfection), Asmá’ (Names), ‘Izzat (Might), Mashíyyat (Will), ‘Ilm (Knowledge), Qudrat (Power), Qawl (Speech), Masá’il (Questions), Sharaf (Honour), Sulṭán (Sovereignty), Mulk (Dominion), ‘Alá’ (Loftiness).
The names of the 19 years of a Vahid (Unity) cycle are 1.Alif (A), 2.Bá' (B), 3.Ab (Father), 4.Dál (D), 5.Báb (Gate), 6.Váv (V), 7.Abad (Eternity), 8.Jád (Generosity), 9.Bahá (Splendour), 10.Ḥubb (Love), 11.Bahháj (Delightful), 12.Javáb (Answer), 13.Aḥad (Single), 14.Vahháb (Bountiful), 15.Vidád (Affection), 16.Badí (Beginning), 17.Bahí (Luminous), 18.Abhá (Most Luminous), 19.Váḥid (Unity).
For instance, 1st of January of 2018 AD is represented as follows in the Baha’i Calendar. Day of week: Perfection. Date of month: Glory. Month: Honour. Year 174 in Bab Era. Year in the 19-year Vahid (Unity) cycle: 3 Ab (Father). Vahid Cycle in 19-Vahid-cycle Kull-i-Shay (All Things) supercycle: 1. Kull-i-Shay supercycle: 1.
Baha'i: The newest Religion in the World
About the Metonic cycle