Bahs believe that all the founders of the world's great religions have been manifestations of God and agents of a progressive divine plan for the education of the human race. Bah Allh was arrested in 1852 and jailed in Tehrn, where he became aware that he was the prophet and messenger of God whose coming had been predicted by the Bb. By clicking "Submit", I agree to the Privacy Policy and Terms of Use, and consent to receive communications (email, telephone call, or text message) from Bahaiteachings.org about news, events and offers, including via automated technology and/or prerecorded calls or messages to the number and email provided above, even if my number is a mobile number or is currently listed on any state, federal or corporate Do Not Call list. [32][33] He specifically criticized the work of individual Bah scholars he saw as defending Bah orthodoxy at the expense of historical rigour, including William S. Hatcher,[32] Muhammad Afnan,[32] Juan Cole[33] (although Cole subsequently left the religion), Nader Saiedi,[34] and Moojan Momen. [11], Bah authors have written in response that the contradictory teachings are either social laws that change from age to age, as part of a progressive revelation, or human error introduced to the more ancient faiths over time. At the time, I didnt care. In Iran, where the religion was founded, universities refuse to admit Baha'i students, Baha'i cemeteries have been destroyed and the countrys Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei has confiscated properties from Baha'i families. He proclaimed a spiritual doctrine emphasizing the forthcoming appearance of a new prophet or messenger of God who would overturn old beliefs and customs and usher in a new era. Baha'u'llah encouraged Baha'is to cooperate with their governments and engage with the followers of all religions in a spirit of fellowship. But the enemies who call themselves friends and who persistently violate every fundamental law of love and unity, are difficult to be dealt with in this day, for the mercy of God is still great. If the Bahs would follow the Bah laws in voting, in electing, in serving and in abiding by Assembly decisions, all this waste of strength through criticising others could be diverted into cooperation and achieving the Plan. '", "What the believers need is not only, as you state, to really study the teachings, but also to have more peace-makers circulating among them. The Earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens, Committee Member - MNF Research Advisory Committee, PhD Scholarship - Uncle Isaac Brown Indigenous Scholarship. It really doesnt matter what one calls oneself, it only matters what ones relationship is to God in reality. How blessed are these aims, especially the prevention of backbiting! A Unitarian Bahai comes across as an idiot, again! [1][2], The criticism and challenges it has faced vary considerably in different regions of the world. It is not an ordinary distinction I desire: not scientific, commercial, industrial distinction. Shoghi Effendi (Guardian of the Baha'i Faith) wrote about this. The Bahs use a calendar, established by the Bb and confirmed by Bah Allh, in which the year is divided into 19 months of 19 days each, with the addition of 4 intercalary days (5 in leap years). Many things are preserved in records as matters of opinion; no one has given a verdict on this matter! 6. I was recently invited to participate on an interfaith panel where we all responded to this question: What are the truths and misconceptions about your Faith? "[25] Excommunication among Bahs is rare and reserved for those actively promoting schism. But ere long this merciful door will be closed and such enemies will be attacked with a madness. But if that fails or if we feel that it is hopeless to try and deal with the matter in that way, while at the same time the case is so serious that the interests of the Cause require that it should be firmly dealt with, then the proper course is to bring the matter before the Spiritual Assembly and have it frankly and fully discussed, calling such evidence as is necessary for the elucidation of the matter. Out of the frying pan and into the fire, so to speak. We are like ploughmen each of whom has his team to manage and his plough to direct, and in order to keep his furrow straight he must keep his eye on his goal and concentrate on his own task. Yes, intermittent fasting has become pretty trendy, for this physical fast is a symbol of the spir, At the beginning of the 20th century, what did a P, One must see in every human being only that which, Every tender heart wonders What can I do to hel, Act in such a way that your heart may be free from, While sorrow and suffering seem to be inescapable, What is the Best Way to Worship? There are no initiation ceremonies, no sacraments, and no clergy. 2,070. In the end (undefined in conventional thinking) all knees will bow before the King of all Kings, Jesus Christ. Bah's recognize the coming of Bah'u'llh as the latest expression of God's guidance . The views expressed in our content reflect individual perspectives and do not represent the official views of the Baha'i Faith. "[13], William McElwee Miller (18921993) was a Presbyterian missionary in Iran who published a polemic titled The Baha'i Faith (1974), in which he attacked the religion by promoting the views of individuals opposing Bah leadership. The more the friends argue back and forth and maintain, each side, that their point of view is the right one, the worse the whole situation becomes. [16] Thus, authorities in the Muslim world have rejected the Bah Faith and regard Bahs as apostates if they had been Muslims before conversion. However, from a Bahai perspective if your relationship to God has not been directed by the revelation of Bahaullah than we are really talking more about ones own vain imaginings as opposed to reality. I cant remember if it was one year or two years, but it was probably closer to one year. This must be the point of distinction among you. Baha'i Viewpoint Heaven and Hell are not seen as literal places that the soul of man goes after physical death but are seen as the . Despite their apparent differences, the worlds great religions, according to the Bahs, teach an identical truth. (Quoted in Star of West, Vol. [21], In the Kitb-i-Aqdas, Bahu'llh prescribed the death penalty both for intentional arson and murder. If any individual should speak ill of one who is absent, it is incumbent on his hearers, in a spiritual and friendly manner, to stop him, and say in effect: would this detraction serve any useful purpose? More recently I found that the Dalai Lama said something similar in just two paragraphs of his 10-chapter book, he says hes not an advocate of religious syncretism such as you find in Bahaism.. Cheri came to love the freedom of thought in that church, despite still being a strong Christian, while I came to love the powerful community the church provided, despite my agnosticism. [15] Douglas Martin wrote that Miller's writings were driven by animus against what he saw as a successful rival faith that was moving into Christian lands. The writings and spoken words of the Bb, Bah Allh, and Abd al-Bah form the sacred literature of the Bah Faith. I read where it clearly said in the Bahai Writings you have to explicitly deny belief in Bahaullah to be removed from National Bahai membership rolls. The faith has no priesthood and does not observe ritual forms in its worship. The Bah Faith is a relatively new religion teaching the essential worth of all religions and the unity of all people. (6) Some Baha'i errors. Religion: Kashmir Shaivism (Trika) I've always found some issues with the main idea of the Baha'i faith, for a few different reasons. Today, Baha'u'llahs shrine, now in Israel, is an important pilgrimage site. The official website of the Baha'i Faith is: Sign up for our newsletter and get all our latest content, 2023 BahaiTeachings.org All Rights Reserved. Omissions? (Dale Husband: How old are you? Baha'is have also been discriminated against in Yemen and in Egypt. The Bah Faith and its predecessor, the Bb religion, originated in the nineteenth-century Persian Empire, arousing considerable opposition, initially on purely theological and doctrinal grounds; it was perceived by many Iranians as threat to established power and authority in Persia.. [7][8], The Bah Faith has maintained its unity and avoided serious division, although several attempts have been made to create sects. "You also ask what one should do to 'handle depression and anger with someone' one feels 'very positively about'. In Acre in northern Israel, a former prison city of the Ottoman Empire, the barracks where Bahullh was imprisoned starting in 1868. Thank you so much! Occasionally Ive heard the uninformed opinion that the Bahai Faith is a sect of Islam not true! For backbiting is divisive, it is the leading cause among the friends of a disposition to withdraw. Like all Bahai Houses of Worship, it welcomes everyone, and its nine entrances symbolize the many legitimate paths to the Creator. Abstract This article will explore some of the issues involved in the sociological analysis of the status of the Bah' Faith. Would it please the Blessed Beauty, contribute to the lasting honour of the friends, promote the holy Faith, support the Covenant, or be of any possible benefit to any soul? For many, the Baha'i faith is one of the most universal religions. For the most part, though, individual Bahai communities do not have a Bahai House of Worship, which are actually more like a gift to the community, not for exclusive use by Bahais. The friends must overlook their shortcomings and faults and speak only of their virtues and not their defects. The majority of Baha'is, however, live in the global south. They and other UUs are destined to do the work of peace, unity, and freedom that Bahais cannot and will never do! The Bah Faith is a relatively new religion teaching the essential worth of all religions and the unity of all people.. The Bah Faith was first mentioned in the United States in 1893 at the World Parliament of Religions in Chicago. Message and data rates may apply. You should urge your fellow-Bahs to take this point of view, and to support you in a strong effort to suppress every critical thought and every harsh word, in order to let the spirit of Bahullh flow into the entire community, and unite it in His love and in His service. Subsequent public protests and mob violence claimed the lives of thousands of his followers. In such cases, of course, the name of the person or persons involved will have to be mentioned. For most Muslims, the prophet Muhammad was the last and final prophet. Instead, the Bahai Faith operates administratively with a system of local, national and international nine-member governing bodies, all democratically elected without nominations or campaigns. The stupidity of that idea should be obvious. Also, tons of conservative, orthodox, even fundamentalist traditional morality in Bahai law. If we think we can help matters by a frank and friendly talk with the individual concerned, refraining from judging or condemning, but pointing out in as kind a manner as possible the way in which, as it seems to us, the sort of conduct in question is harmful to the Cause or of a nature forbidden by the teachings, then it seems well to try that method before resorting to the more formidable method of bringing the matter before the Spiritual Assembly. Again, it doesnt really matter. Backbiting, Criticism, Faultfinding, Gossip, Lies, Slander Etc. In this two-part article we will briefly examine: (1) The Baha'i approach to other religions. When not convened as a body, each member has no autonomous authority. The Baha'i Faith is not just a collection of philosophical principles or an attempt to combine or conflate religions. [15], Islamic theology regards Muhammad as the Khatam an-Nabiyyin, the last prophet whom God has sent and Islam as the final religion for all humankind. Abdo presented the following list of criticisms of the Bah Faith from a feminist perspective at an annual gathering for Bah studies in 1995: the ineligibility of women to serve on the Universal House of Justice--this is of particular interest to supporters of women priests within the Christian tradition; the intestacy laws in the Kitab-i-Aqdas; the dowry laws with particular reference to the virginity refund clause; the exemption of menstruating women from obligatory prayers and the implication of menstrual taboo; the use of androcentric language and male pronouns in texts; the emphasis on traditional morality and family values[18]. Of religions in Chicago the Kitb-i-Aqdas, Bahu'llh prescribed the death penalty both for intentional arson murder! Also ask what one calls oneself, it only matters what ones relationship is to God in.! 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