From the Writings of Baha’u’llah:
Knowledge is as wings to man’s life, and a ladder for his ascent. Its acquisition is incumbent upon everyone.
(Baha’u’llah: Epistle to the Son of the Wolf, p. 26)
From the Writings and Utterances of `Abdu’l-Baha:
The education of each child is compulsory…. In addition to this wide-spread education each child must be taught a profession, art, or trade, so that every member of the community will be enabled to earn his own livelihood.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Education, p. 313)
Among the safeguards of the Holy Faith is the training of children, and this is among the weightiest of principles in all the Divine Teachings. Thus from the very beginning mothers must rear their infants in the cradle of good morals – for it is the mothers who are the first educators – so that, when the child cometh to maturity, he will prove to be endowed with all the virtues and qualities that are worthy of praise.
And further, according to the Divine commandments, every child must learn reading and writing, and acquire such branches of knowledge as are useful and necessary, as well as learning an art or skill. The utmost care must be devoted to these matters; any neglect of them, any failure to act on them, is not permissible.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Education, pp. 262-263)
And among the teachings of Baha’u’llah is the promotion of education. Every child must be instructed in sciences as much as is necessary. If the parents are able to provide the expenses of this education, it is well, otherwise the community must provide the means for the teaching of that child.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Selections … `Abdu’l-Baha, p. 304)
Among other teachings and principles Baha’u’llah counsels the education of all members of society. No individual should be denied or deprived of intellectual training, although each should receive according to capacity. None must be left in the grades of ignorance, for ignorance is a defect in the human world. All mankind must be given a knowledge of science and philosophy – that is, as much as may be deemed necessary. All cannot be scientists and philosophers, but each should be educated according to his needs and deserts.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 108)
Were there no educator, all souls would remain savage, and were it not for the teacher, the children would be ignorant creatures.
It is for this reason that, in this new cycle, education and training are recorded in the Book of God as obligatory and not voluntary. That is, it is enjoined upon the father and mother, as a duty, to strive with all effort to train the daughter and the son, to nurse them from the breast of knowledge and to rear them in the bosom of sciences and arts.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Selections … `Abdu’l-Baha, pp. 126-127)
The primary, the most urgent requirement is the promotion of education. It is inconceivable that any nation should achieve prosperity and success unless this paramount, this fundamental concern is carried forward. The principal reason for the decline and fall of peoples is ignorance.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Secret of Divine Civilization, p. 109)
Eighth, education is essential, and all standards of training and teaching throughout the world of mankind should be brought into conformity and agreement; a universal curriculum should be established, and the basis of ethics be the same.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 182)
Baha’u’llah has announced that inasmuch as ignorance and lack of education are barriers of separation among mankind, all must receive training and instruction. Through this provision the lack of mutual understanding will be remedied and the unity of mankind furthered and advanced. Universal education is a universal law.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 300)
We must love all with love of the heart. Some are ignorant; they must be trained and educated. One is sick; he must be healed. Another is as a child; we must assist him to attain maturity. We must not detest him who is ailing, neither shun him, scorn nor curse him, but care for him with the utmost kindness and tenderness. An infant must not be treated with disdain simply because it is an infant. Our responsibility is to train, educate and develop it in order that it may advance toward maturity.
(`Abdu’l-Baha: Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 63)