(Persia Digest) - April 23 marks the birth anniversary of Sheikh Baha'i, one of the great Iranian architects and it is designated the National Architect Day. We hear the name of Sheikh Baha'i these days more than ever, because of the water dispute between the farmers of Isfahan and Yazd.
He was an architect who, by the order of Shah Abbas, directed Zayanderoud’s water to the districts of Isfahan and adjacent villages near the river justly, using the precise principles of engineering. He calculated the right to water of each village and city around Isfahan with a very high accuracy, and Zayanderoud’s water is still used in the surrounding cities and villages according to the same accurate divisions.
He is the architect of many amazing structures of the Safavid era in Isfahan such as Sheikh Baha'i Hammam [baths], Menar Jonban [Shaking Minarets] and Imam Mosque. In the era of Shah Abbas, artists and architects were at the forefront, so Sheikh Baha’i, with the support of Shah Abbas, managed to implement Iranian and Islamic architecture in the design and implementation of many Safavid landmarks.
Sheikh Baha’i was the architect of building wonders in his time. It is said that the Sheikh Baha'i’s Baths had a furnace, an amazing design by Sheikh Baha'i, which was lit and warmed by a single candle. A candle that kept the baths warm for years. The design of Isfahan's Menar Jonban, which is still standing, is also attributed to him. Two adjacent minarets where one shakes, thus shaking the other one.
The design of Najafabad Qanat aqueducts in Isfahan called Zarin Kamar Qanat (one of the biggest aqueducts of Iran) is another important work by him.
Sheikh Baha’i, the architect of Isfahan’s Imam Mosque, one of the most beautiful mosques in Iran, is also the desinger of “Seven towers of Kharoun”.
He has trained many disciples; Mulla Sadra Shirazi and Mulla Mohammad Taghi Majlessi I (the father of Majlessi II, the author of the book, Bihar al-Anwar) are among his disciples.
Sheikh Baha'i has left about 95 books and treatises on politics, hadith, mathematics, ethics, astronomy, mysticism, fiqh, engineering, arts, and physics.
He has also been a poet of wisdom. His most important book is “Kashkul”, but he has written many books on Iranian literature and mysticism.