Bahá’í belief incorporates the principle of progressive revelation, in which each religion builds on the one before. “Messengers of God” (or “Manifestations of God”) always confirm the spiritual laws of the previous religion, but may change some of the social laws, thereby instituting a new era. Bahá’ís recognise, among others, the Buddha, Krishna, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad (pbuh) as Manifestations of God.
The primary purpose of each Messenger is the transformation of the individual, which has the purpose of preparing each soul for the next life but simultaneously results in a collective transformation of society. In the Bahá’í religion, the global aims – world administration, unity of mankind, abolition of class barriers, etc. – are major goals, but clearly depend upon the transformation of individuals for their achievement. Nonetheless, these goals profoundly influence Bahá’í behaviour in a very positive way, which is often remarked upon.