21st April - 2nd May, 2012
Ridvan (pronounced REZ-wan) is a twelve day festival observed by adherents of the Baha'i faith. It is known as the "King of Festivals". It commemorates the announcement of his prophethood made by the founder of the faith, Baha'u'llah, in 1863. The festival begins, in fact, at sunset on 20th April.
The word 'Ridvan' means 'good pleasure' in Arabic. It has also come to be accepted as meaning 'paradise'. Ridvan was the name Baha'u'allah gave to the Najibiyyih Garden in Baghdad; the Garden being the place he inhabited for twelve days prior to his imposed exile to Istanbul. The most holy days of the festival are held to be the first, nineth and twelfth days, on which work is prohibited.
During Ridvan you might like to wish your Baha'i friends 'Happy Ridvan'.