UHJ Calls for 41 Regional Conferences

As Alison mentioned in her recent message about clusters, in the grand scheme of Baha’i multi-year plans, 2008 is the mid-point between 1996 and 2021. The future date being the centenary of the Formative Age of the Baha’i Faith.

To celebrate this and to “deliberate on its exigencies” the Universal House of Justice today called for 41 regional conferences to be held around the world. Check the map to see if your city is on the list. Each of the regional conferences will have 2 ITC counsellors as representatives of the UHJ. And Baha’is wonder why there is a revolving door between the two administrative bodies!

To see the document full page click on the top leftmost button (looks like a rectangle within a darker rectangle). You can also find the document here UHJ Calls for Regional Conferences (October 2008) along with all the other neat stuff uploaded there.

Here is a map showing all of them:

  • Grover

    The UHJ publicists must have worked for George Bush! What a load of crap! They must’ve needed a lot of toilet paper to keep their keyboards clean when they were typing this out.

  • Grover

    The UHJ publicists must have worked for George Bush! What a load of crap! They must’ve needed a lot of toilet paper to keep their keyboards clean when they were typing this out.

  • Brendan Cook

    There are two things I love about this. The first is just that the UHJ messages still have that inimitable style. Take a line like this: “there has been a rise in the awareness of the efficacy of the framework governing the operation of the Five Year Plan.” That’s just a sparkling gem, now isn’t it? And Baquia is right to indicate the beauty of a phrase like “deliberate on its current exigencies.” It’s gold, I tell ya!

    But in addition, I want to point out how the House tries to exploit the current financial crisis. This is great because the Infallible Nine aren’t alone in doing this. In the ‘states we’ve seen two very different, very self-interested explanations: the Democrats blame deregulation, the Republicans have blamed community groups securing mortgages for poor people, the former blame President Bush, the latter blame ACORN. Well, now the UHJ is in on the act with their own very convenient diagnosis: insufficient spirituality. According to the .75 dozen propositionally inerrant individuals (who just happen to be male) in Haifa, it’s not because people voted in incompetent leaders who instigated bad economic policies, or even because they took out loans they should have known they couldn’t pay. The economy is in trouble because people aren’t listening to the UHJ! Now that we think of it, it seems so obvious.

  • Brendan Cook

    There are two things I love about this. The first is just that the UHJ messages still have that inimitable style. Take a line like this: “there has been a rise in the awareness of the efficacy of the framework governing the operation of the Five Year Plan.” That’s just a sparkling gem, now isn’t it? And Baquia is right to indicate the beauty of a phrase like “deliberate on its current exigencies.” It’s gold, I tell ya!

    But in addition, I want to point out how the House tries to exploit the current financial crisis. This is great because the Infallible Nine aren’t alone in doing this. In the ‘states we’ve seen two very different, very self-interested explanations: the Democrats blame deregulation, the Republicans have blamed community groups securing mortgages for poor people, the former blame President Bush, the latter blame ACORN. Well, now the UHJ is in on the act with their own very convenient diagnosis: insufficient spirituality. According to the .75 dozen propositionally inerrant individuals (who just happen to be male) in Haifa, it’s not because people voted in incompetent leaders who instigated bad economic policies, or even because they took out loans they should have known they couldn’t pay. The economy is in trouble because people aren’t listening to the UHJ! Now that we think of it, it seems so obvious.

  • Keats Thomas

    It was predictable that the Baha’is would use this crisis to promote the Faith. In fact, when I realized the depth of the crisis, I mentioned to one of my friends: I probably can write the UHJ letter on this and be pretty close to what they say.

  • Keats Thomas

    It was predictable that the Baha’is would use this crisis to promote the Faith. In fact, when I realized the depth of the crisis, I mentioned to one of my friends: I probably can write the UHJ letter on this and be pretty close to what they say.

  • p

    Shoghi Effendi wrote even more ominous letters back in his day. So what? Things got bad, then good, then bad and so on. The world ebb and flows. I just wish the Bahai Faith would ebb and flow with it. Instead it is stuck in the world of Shoghi Effendi. It’s not growing for a reason.

  • p

    Shoghi Effendi wrote even more ominous letters back in his day. So what? Things got bad, then good, then bad and so on. The world ebb and flows. I just wish the Bahai Faith would ebb and flow with it. Instead it is stuck in the world of Shoghi Effendi. It’s not growing for a reason.

  • farhan

    Keats Thomas wrote:
    “It was predictable that the Baha’is would use this crisis to promote the Faith.”

    Perhaps if the WHO sent help to an afflicted region, you would say they were promoting the WHO an not health facilities?

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Keats Thomas wrote:
    “It was predictable that the Baha’is would use this crisis to promote the Faith.”

    Perhaps if the WHO sent help to an afflicted region, you would say they were promoting the WHO an not health facilities?

  • farhan

    Brendan Cook wrote:
    it’s not because people voted in incompetent leaders who instigated bad economic policies, or even because they took out loans they should have known they couldn’t pay. The economy is in trouble because people aren’t listening to the UHJ!

    Brendan, voting for incompetent people or taking loans they cannot pay both refer to inadequate spiritual motivations, and the economy is indeed in trouble because humanity is not heeding to Baha’u’llah’s teachings which are promulgated by the UHJ.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Brendan Cook wrote:
    it’s not because people voted in incompetent leaders who instigated bad economic policies, or even because they took out loans they should have known they couldn’t pay. The economy is in trouble because people aren’t listening to the UHJ!

    Brendan, voting for incompetent people or taking loans they cannot pay both refer to inadequate spiritual motivations, and the economy is indeed in trouble because humanity is not heeding to Baha’u’llah’s teachings which are promulgated by the UHJ.

  • Grover

    Farhan wrote:

    [quote post="534"]Brendan, voting for incompetent people or taking loans they cannot pay both refer to inadequate spiritual motivations, and the economy is indeed in trouble because humanity is not heeding to Baha’u’llah’s teachings which are promulgated by the UHJ.[/quote]

    What an ignorant and arrogant thing to say.

    Just because people voted for Bush and whoever or took loans that they cannot now pay does not mean that they have “inadequate spiritual motivations” as you put it.

    How many American Baha’is voted for Bush? How many Baha’is have been affected by the current banking and loans problem? Even people I know with the highest “spiritual motivations” were still lulled by promises made by banking firms, finance companies, George Bush, etc. Who on the UHJ, NSA,ITC and arm of the learned voted for George Bush?

    The economy in trouble? How many times has the economy crashed in the past and people got burnt? What about the Wall St crash in 1929? Or the Black Monday crash in 1987? What about the financial troubles caused by the tiger economies of Asia? Or the dot.com crash in the late 1990s? How many times has the economy crashed, recovered, new measures put in place, and people carried on with their lives?

  • Grover

    Farhan wrote:

    [quote post="534"]Brendan, voting for incompetent people or taking loans they cannot pay both refer to inadequate spiritual motivations, and the economy is indeed in trouble because humanity is not heeding to Baha’u’llah’s teachings which are promulgated by the UHJ.[/quote]

    What an ignorant and arrogant thing to say.

    Just because people voted for Bush and whoever or took loans that they cannot now pay does not mean that they have “inadequate spiritual motivations” as you put it.

    How many American Baha’is voted for Bush? How many Baha’is have been affected by the current banking and loans problem? Even people I know with the highest “spiritual motivations” were still lulled by promises made by banking firms, finance companies, George Bush, etc. Who on the UHJ, NSA,ITC and arm of the learned voted for George Bush?

    The economy in trouble? How many times has the economy crashed in the past and people got burnt? What about the Wall St crash in 1929? Or the Black Monday crash in 1987? What about the financial troubles caused by the tiger economies of Asia? Or the dot.com crash in the late 1990s? How many times has the economy crashed, recovered, new measures put in place, and people carried on with their lives?

  • farhan

    Grove wrote:
    How many times has the economy crashed, recovered, new measures put in place, and people carried on with their lives?

    Grover, I will reply to your point and not to your insult.

    I maintain my view that the deliberate technique of trapping unwary people into dangerous loans is a clear reflection of an unethical economic system that has and will continue to produce exclusion and misery until it is ethically inspired.

    This might seem a “normal” trend to the ultra-liberal societies of the West, it most certainly is considered as unethical and even out rightly dishonest to the rest of the planet.

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Grove wrote:
    How many times has the economy crashed, recovered, new measures put in place, and people carried on with their lives?

    Grover, I will reply to your point and not to your insult.

    I maintain my view that the deliberate technique of trapping unwary people into dangerous loans is a clear reflection of an unethical economic system that has and will continue to produce exclusion and misery until it is ethically inspired.

    This might seem a “normal” trend to the ultra-liberal societies of the West, it most certainly is considered as unethical and even out rightly dishonest to the rest of the planet.

  • Grover

    Farhan, your gross generalisations are amazing. Are you sure you are a doctor? I’d hate to see what diagnoses you give your patients… Hmmm lets see the symptom is swollen testicles. Oh, its a spiritual problem, you haven’t been paying attention to the UHJ… Broken arm, its a spiritual problem. Conjunctivitis, its a spiritual problem. Lets all lay on hands, say a round of prayers and you’ll be healed. Your bedside manner I’m sure is the stuff of legends.

  • Grover

    Farhan, your gross generalisations are amazing. Are you sure you are a doctor? I’d hate to see what diagnoses you give your patients… Hmmm lets see the symptom is swollen testicles. Oh, its a spiritual problem, you haven’t been paying attention to the UHJ… Broken arm, its a spiritual problem. Conjunctivitis, its a spiritual problem. Lets all lay on hands, say a round of prayers and you’ll be healed. Your bedside manner I’m sure is the stuff of legends.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="57916"]Grove wrote:
    How many times has the economy crashed, recovered, new measures put in place, and people carried on with their lives?

    Grover, I will reply to your point and not to your insult.

    I maintain my view that the deliberate technique of trapping unwary people into dangerous loans is a clear reflection of an unethical economic system that has and will continue to produce exclusion and misery until it is ethically inspired.

    This might seem a “normal” trend to the ultra-liberal societies of the West, it most certainly is considered as unethical and even out rightly dishonest to the rest of the planet.[/quote]

    Farhan,

    You seem to be blaming the financial crisis on “people not being spiritual” and the poison of “ultra-liberal societies”.

    Please study my new Ruhi Book 1929 for insight.

    The most critical component of the crisis is NOT about home mortgages. It is about the financial instruments that were made out of these mortgages.

    This situation is about stupidity. There is no nation, economic system, or certainly organized religion on this Earth that is exempt from stupidity.

    If fact organized religions over the centuries have often been one of the most exemplary and prolific systems of stupidity of every era. Baha’u’llah actually writes about this a lot.

    We, as Baha’is, certainly have done our part too to keep up the solid flow of stupidity with our lifetime incumbent electoral system that does not hold anyone accountable for anything ever.

    Wall Street in this crisis actually mirrored us in attaining this new catastrophic level of stupidity so I think we are now truly influencing affairs in the world by example. No one on Wall Street has been ever held accountable for anything in all this just as the Bush Administration has never been held accountable for anything for eight years. Ever. Period.

    So the entire world and it’s systems is now mirroring us in the Baha’i standard of no accountability in our organization. Ever. Period. We are truly now having a tremendous effect on the world.

    As we reward stupidity in our organizations at every level, so the world rewards stupidity in all its organizations at every level also.

    Rewarding stupidity is the hallmark of the present era and the Baha’is certainly have done their part to elevate this to a new standard of bullying incompetence.

    With our record it will be great for everyone on Earth when we run the entire banking system of the world. So please take my Ruhi Book 1929 so you will not be a “D” student in economics and will be able to take over and run the Baha’i banking system in the future.

    I will warn you though that the final practical spiritual exercise at the end of the Ruhi Book 1929 is to, well, lend me money as the authorized tutor! I am sure that as a medical doctor in France you are doing pretty good and will be glad to participate in this exercise. That is if you ARE spiritual enough and truly freed from all materialistic concerns. French francs will be accepted as well as all currencies worldwide. I am setting up my Paypal account now. Non-Baha’i monies are accepted as well. So your wife and daughters who you said never joined the Faith can send me money as well. Thanks!

    Another lesson in Ruhi Book 1929 will be forth coming very soon. It will have the first multiple choice test. So please continue in the class.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="57916"]Grove wrote:
    How many times has the economy crashed, recovered, new measures put in place, and people carried on with their lives?

    Grover, I will reply to your point and not to your insult.

    I maintain my view that the deliberate technique of trapping unwary people into dangerous loans is a clear reflection of an unethical economic system that has and will continue to produce exclusion and misery until it is ethically inspired.

    This might seem a “normal” trend to the ultra-liberal societies of the West, it most certainly is considered as unethical and even out rightly dishonest to the rest of the planet.[/quote]

    Farhan,

    You seem to be blaming the financial crisis on “people not being spiritual” and the poison of “ultra-liberal societies”.

    Please study my new Ruhi Book 1929 for insight.

    The most critical component of the crisis is NOT about home mortgages. It is about the financial instruments that were made out of these mortgages.

    This situation is about stupidity. There is no nation, economic system, or certainly organized religion on this Earth that is exempt from stupidity.

    If fact organized religions over the centuries have often been one of the most exemplary and prolific systems of stupidity of every era. Baha’u’llah actually writes about this a lot.

    We, as Baha’is, certainly have done our part too to keep up the solid flow of stupidity with our lifetime incumbent electoral system that does not hold anyone accountable for anything ever.

    Wall Street in this crisis actually mirrored us in attaining this new catastrophic level of stupidity so I think we are now truly influencing affairs in the world by example. No one on Wall Street has been ever held accountable for anything in all this just as the Bush Administration has never been held accountable for anything for eight years. Ever. Period.

    So the entire world and it’s systems is now mirroring us in the Baha’i standard of no accountability in our organization. Ever. Period. We are truly now having a tremendous effect on the world.

    As we reward stupidity in our organizations at every level, so the world rewards stupidity in all its organizations at every level also.

    Rewarding stupidity is the hallmark of the present era and the Baha’is certainly have done their part to elevate this to a new standard of bullying incompetence.

    With our record it will be great for everyone on Earth when we run the entire banking system of the world. So please take my Ruhi Book 1929 so you will not be a “D” student in economics and will be able to take over and run the Baha’i banking system in the future.

    I will warn you though that the final practical spiritual exercise at the end of the Ruhi Book 1929 is to, well, lend me money as the authorized tutor! I am sure that as a medical doctor in France you are doing pretty good and will be glad to participate in this exercise. That is if you ARE spiritual enough and truly freed from all materialistic concerns. French francs will be accepted as well as all currencies worldwide. I am setting up my Paypal account now. Non-Baha’i monies are accepted as well. So your wife and daughters who you said never joined the Faith can send me money as well. Thanks!

    Another lesson in Ruhi Book 1929 will be forth coming very soon. It will have the first multiple choice test. So please continue in the class.

  • farhan

    Craig wrote:

    You seem to be blaming the financial crisis on “people not being spiritual”This situation is about stupidity. There is no nation, economic system, or certainly organized religion on this Earth that is exempt from stupidity.

    I fully agree, Craig. The purpose of knowledge is to neutralise stupidity. Knowledge is of two kinds: rational AND subjective; schools and science provide the rational part, and religion provides the subjective or ?spiritual? part.

    I hate the word ?blame? ?guilt?, ?sin?, ?pure?, ?impure?… let us speak about lack of education and our duty to help each other advance on the path of understanding.

    Craig: We, as Baha’is, certainly have done our part too to keep up the solid flow of stupidity

    Farhan: agreed, except that I would word that as a lack of rational and spiritual understanding, insight, foresight…

    The whole purpose of the Ruhi sequence is t help us understand that we are in this world for a short transit, and during this transit, whatever service we leave behind will have helped towards accomplishing our purpose in this life. Once this spiritual reality has been understood, then will all our rational knowledge help change the world instead of providing us with medals and awards we can exhibit on our lapels.

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Craig wrote:

    You seem to be blaming the financial crisis on “people not being spiritual”This situation is about stupidity. There is no nation, economic system, or certainly organized religion on this Earth that is exempt from stupidity.

    I fully agree, Craig. The purpose of knowledge is to neutralise stupidity. Knowledge is of two kinds: rational AND subjective; schools and science provide the rational part, and religion provides the subjective or ?spiritual? part.

    I hate the word ?blame? ?guilt?, ?sin?, ?pure?, ?impure?… let us speak about lack of education and our duty to help each other advance on the path of understanding.

    Craig: We, as Baha’is, certainly have done our part too to keep up the solid flow of stupidity

    Farhan: agreed, except that I would word that as a lack of rational and spiritual understanding, insight, foresight…

    The whole purpose of the Ruhi sequence is t help us understand that we are in this world for a short transit, and during this transit, whatever service we leave behind will have helped towards accomplishing our purpose in this life. Once this spiritual reality has been understood, then will all our rational knowledge help change the world instead of providing us with medals and awards we can exhibit on our lapels.

  • farhan

    Grover wrote:
    Broken arm, its a spiritual problem. Conjunctivitis, its a spiritual problem. Lets all lay on hands, say a round of prayers and you’ll be healed. Your bedside manner I’m sure is the stuff of legends.

    Grover, the 1948 constitution of the WHO defines health as a global bio-psycho-social wellbeing. this means that broken arms, conjunctivitis, and all other health problems, even accidental, have some factors of a psycho-social nature in their occurence and in their outcomes: better social structure can help reduce the incidence and improve the outcomes of these conditions.

    We also know that the psycho-social factors are directly influenced by our “state of mind” which is what we call “spiritual”. Hence all disease has some spiritual factors. This this does not mean that by prayers we will cure a broken arm, but by prayers we might reduce the incidence of accidents and prevent some complications resulting from broken arms.

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Grover wrote:
    Broken arm, its a spiritual problem. Conjunctivitis, its a spiritual problem. Lets all lay on hands, say a round of prayers and you’ll be healed. Your bedside manner I’m sure is the stuff of legends.

    Grover, the 1948 constitution of the WHO defines health as a global bio-psycho-social wellbeing. this means that broken arms, conjunctivitis, and all other health problems, even accidental, have some factors of a psycho-social nature in their occurence and in their outcomes: better social structure can help reduce the incidence and improve the outcomes of these conditions.

    We also know that the psycho-social factors are directly influenced by our “state of mind” which is what we call “spiritual”. Hence all disease has some spiritual factors. This this does not mean that by prayers we will cure a broken arm, but by prayers we might reduce the incidence of accidents and prevent some complications resulting from broken arms.

  • Grover

    Holy crap Farhan! Now I know with 100% certainty that you are a quack. With intelligence like that you must’ve just barely scraped through medical school or shoved money in someone’s pocket. Either that or you were once intelligent and endless repeats of Ruhi has rotted your brain. I wouldn’t want you for my doctor…. You must be the laughing stock wherever you are working.

  • Grover

    Holy crap Farhan! Now I know with 100% certainty that you are a quack. With intelligence like that you must’ve just barely scraped through medical school or shoved money in someone’s pocket. Either that or you were once intelligent and endless repeats of Ruhi has rotted your brain. I wouldn’t want you for my doctor…. You must be the laughing stock wherever you are working.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Grover, I have no problem with you disagreeing with anything Farhan or myself or anyone else here says but I do have a problem when anyone here attacks or insults or questions the sincerity of others. So please do not engage in this sort of thing. It is unacceptable.

    Furthermore, if all one has is personal insults and ad hominem then it isn’t very effective as a means to persuade others towards your position, is it?

    thank you :)

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Grover, I have no problem with you disagreeing with anything Farhan or myself or anyone else here says but I do have a problem when anyone here attacks or insults or questions the sincerity of others. So please do not engage in this sort of thing. It is unacceptable.

    Furthermore, if all one has is personal insults and ad hominem then it isn’t very effective as a means to persuade others towards your position, is it?

    thank you :)

  • farhan

    Baquia wrote:
    “…if all one has is personal insults and ad hominem then it isn’t very effective…”

    Thanks Baquia, for keeping your blog a clean place for useful exchanges.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Baquia wrote:
    “…if all one has is personal insults and ad hominem then it isn’t very effective…”

    Thanks Baquia, for keeping your blog a clean place for useful exchanges.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    My hunch is that there is much more to be learned from say, Minsky than say, Baha’u’llah when it comes to this current financial crisis.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    My hunch is that there is much more to be learned from say, Minsky than say, Baha’u’llah when it comes to this current financial crisis.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]My hunch is that there is much more to be learned from say, Minsky than say, Baha’u’llah when it comes to this current financial crisis.[/quote]

    I agree.

    I also say the Panic of 1907 is also very much worth studying in this current situation.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panic_of_1907

    This sorry history will be a later lesson itself in Ruhi Book 1929.

    There were very few new buildings built on “Main Street” in small towns in New England for the next 50 years because of the Panic of 1907. It took until around 1960 for things to recover at the small town level.

    As I have said, since Douglas Martin and Peter Khan both seem to believe the Baha’i Faith will actually be the dynamic future monopoly banking system of the entire world, I’m sure our guys are all fully up on all this, right? Or do they just know how to create and run a worldwide banking system by just being automatically infallible? They are all up on Ravi Batra too right?

    http://www.ravibatra.com/

    I, myself, just love the guy’s books!

    Oh, but that’s right. Reading books is now thought to be East Coast elitist now in BOTH the Baha’i Faith and the Republican Party too these days. Anyone who reads books and actually studies anything and thinks about anything is the enemy of BOTH God and the RNC!

    We live in very strange times.

    Do you think Douglas Martin and Peter Khan can lend me some money since they are apparently way out ahead on all this because they are “spiritual” and I, myself, am not “spiritual” enough as Farhan implied because I have a mortgage in our Godless “liberal” financial system, right? But I also have an imaginary insurance paper that says it will be paid back if I default. It would be very “spiritual” of them to accept that, right?

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]My hunch is that there is much more to be learned from say, Minsky than say, Baha’u’llah when it comes to this current financial crisis.[/quote]

    I agree.

    I also say the Panic of 1907 is also very much worth studying in this current situation.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panic_of_1907

    This sorry history will be a later lesson itself in Ruhi Book 1929.

    There were very few new buildings built on “Main Street” in small towns in New England for the next 50 years because of the Panic of 1907. It took until around 1960 for things to recover at the small town level.

    As I have said, since Douglas Martin and Peter Khan both seem to believe the Baha’i Faith will actually be the dynamic future monopoly banking system of the entire world, I’m sure our guys are all fully up on all this, right? Or do they just know how to create and run a worldwide banking system by just being automatically infallible? They are all up on Ravi Batra too right?

    http://www.ravibatra.com/

    I, myself, just love the guy’s books!

    Oh, but that’s right. Reading books is now thought to be East Coast elitist now in BOTH the Baha’i Faith and the Republican Party too these days. Anyone who reads books and actually studies anything and thinks about anything is the enemy of BOTH God and the RNC!

    We live in very strange times.

    Do you think Douglas Martin and Peter Khan can lend me some money since they are apparently way out ahead on all this because they are “spiritual” and I, myself, am not “spiritual” enough as Farhan implied because I have a mortgage in our Godless “liberal” financial system, right? But I also have an imaginary insurance paper that says it will be paid back if I default. It would be very “spiritual” of them to accept that, right?

  • Grover

    Sorry Baquia. Seeing as Farhan has cheerfully insulted all those that voted for George Bush, all those that are in financial difficulties, and western liberal culture in general, and made statements about everyone’s lack of spirituality with all the authority of the UHJ, I thought it only fair to call into question his integrity and ability as a doctor.

  • Grover

    Sorry Baquia. Seeing as Farhan has cheerfully insulted all those that voted for George Bush, all those that are in financial difficulties, and western liberal culture in general, and made statements about everyone’s lack of spirituality with all the authority of the UHJ, I thought it only fair to call into question his integrity and ability as a doctor.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Craig, good point about the 1907 crisis. Did you know Abdu’l-Baha wrote a little prayer for JP Morgan? From what I heard it was when he was in NY and happened to pass by their offices. They had a book where visitors signed in… I wonder if it is in some vault somewhere. Disclosure, I may own some JPM ;)

    Grover, no problem, but I don’t think you owe me an apology, at least not as much as to Farhan. Let’s stick to the issues. I know things can get heated but we do each other and the ideas we stand for a disservice when we get personal.

    On that note, I think both the source and the solution of the financial crisis is simple. The Baha’i Faith is not an economic model nor a solution. Nor is it a medical model or solution. These things are left to their respective fields and they continue to advance based on solid scientific research.

    I’ve seen this before when fellow Baha’is pull out the “Baha’i” card willy nilly whenever any serious issue confronts us as a society. Truth is that the Baha’i Faith has its place but it is not to replace every other discipline out there.

    Those who jam the round peg into the square hole do so because they have nothing else to offer. They don’t take the time to investigate the issue, nor to explore what is really going on. Their only answer is the same answer to everything.

    Reminds me of the fundamentalist right or the Evangelicals in the US that believe everything has the same source and the same solution: God.

    That manner of over simplification is ignorant at best and outright dangerous at worst.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Craig, good point about the 1907 crisis. Did you know Abdu’l-Baha wrote a little prayer for JP Morgan? From what I heard it was when he was in NY and happened to pass by their offices. They had a book where visitors signed in… I wonder if it is in some vault somewhere. Disclosure, I may own some JPM ;)

    Grover, no problem, but I don’t think you owe me an apology, at least not as much as to Farhan. Let’s stick to the issues. I know things can get heated but we do each other and the ideas we stand for a disservice when we get personal.

    On that note, I think both the source and the solution of the financial crisis is simple. The Baha’i Faith is not an economic model nor a solution. Nor is it a medical model or solution. These things are left to their respective fields and they continue to advance based on solid scientific research.

    I’ve seen this before when fellow Baha’is pull out the “Baha’i” card willy nilly whenever any serious issue confronts us as a society. Truth is that the Baha’i Faith has its place but it is not to replace every other discipline out there.

    Those who jam the round peg into the square hole do so because they have nothing else to offer. They don’t take the time to investigate the issue, nor to explore what is really going on. Their only answer is the same answer to everything.

    Reminds me of the fundamentalist right or the Evangelicals in the US that believe everything has the same source and the same solution: God.

    That manner of over simplification is ignorant at best and outright dangerous at worst.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="57967"] On that note, I think both the source and the solution of the financial crisis is simple. The Baha’i Faith is not an economic model nor a solution. Nor is it a medical model or solution. These things are left to their respective fields and they continue to advance based on solid scientific research.

    I’ve seen this before when fellow Baha’is pull out the “Baha’i” card willy nilly whenever any serious issue confronts us as a society. Truth is that the Baha’i Faith has its place but it is not to replace every other discipline out there.

    That manner of over simplification is ignorant at best and outright dangerous at worst.[/quote]

    Exactly. These people would be much better off studying the Panic of 1907 rather than the Hidden Words on this. But i did love that quote where Hand Master of Time and Space Douglas Martin said the Baha’i Faith will be the banking system of the future.

    Yay Doug Man! Go Doug! So he had better take Ruhi Book 1929 which I am posting up here as an act of service to my fellow human beings. Got that Farhan? I am doing this as an act of service! Does that count? I’m old school where hard study and knowledge is ALWAYS ideologically appropriate no matter what the MAGICAL THINKING FADS of the hour are.

    Would the Canadian Banking System lend me some money too?

    I wonder what the Wasilla Bible Church teaches about the Panic of 1907 and how it led to the creation of the Federal Reserve in 1913? Does anyone know what their take is on the subject?

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="57967"] On that note, I think both the source and the solution of the financial crisis is simple. The Baha’i Faith is not an economic model nor a solution. Nor is it a medical model or solution. These things are left to their respective fields and they continue to advance based on solid scientific research.

    I’ve seen this before when fellow Baha’is pull out the “Baha’i” card willy nilly whenever any serious issue confronts us as a society. Truth is that the Baha’i Faith has its place but it is not to replace every other discipline out there.

    That manner of over simplification is ignorant at best and outright dangerous at worst.[/quote]

    Exactly. These people would be much better off studying the Panic of 1907 rather than the Hidden Words on this. But i did love that quote where Hand Master of Time and Space Douglas Martin said the Baha’i Faith will be the banking system of the future.

    Yay Doug Man! Go Doug! So he had better take Ruhi Book 1929 which I am posting up here as an act of service to my fellow human beings. Got that Farhan? I am doing this as an act of service! Does that count? I’m old school where hard study and knowledge is ALWAYS ideologically appropriate no matter what the MAGICAL THINKING FADS of the hour are.

    Would the Canadian Banking System lend me some money too?

    I wonder what the Wasilla Bible Church teaches about the Panic of 1907 and how it led to the creation of the Federal Reserve in 1913? Does anyone know what their take is on the subject?

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="57967"]Craig, good point about the 1907 crisis. Did you know Abdu’l-Baha wrote a little prayer for JP Morgan? From what I heard it was when he was in NY and happened to pass by their offices. They had a book where visitors signed in… I wonder if it is in some vault somewhere. Disclosure, I may own some JPM ;)[/quote]

    Baquia,

    I would love to see that prayer! JPMorgan may need Divine Intervention yet! Especially for your shares! Even though they are in the Hollowed Nine Core Protected Banks (good number!) word has it that they are far more exposed and at risk to the CDS’s than anyone yet fully realizes.

    As I will discuss in an upcoming lesson in Ruhi Book 1929, the CDO’s are financial AIDS and no one really knows who has been having completely unprotected financial sex with whom over the last five years with the incredible rise of this toxic financial plutonium.

    In financial terms, the whole thing is right out of Eliot Spitzer’s most extreme V.I.P. fantasy. But in the case of the CDO’s and CDS’s nobody even kept their socks on.

    This all happened because no one was held accountable on Wall Street which is the exact same people in the Baha’i Administrative order since 1921.

    But the rise of the Internet is going to change all this now. You get to ANY position of power ANYWHERE on Earth doing AMYTHING now for the next thousand years and you will have the keyboards of citizen economists that are smarter than you and citizen theologians that are smarter than you and citizen administrators that are smarter than you up your a** 24/7/365/1000.

    Political parties and organized religions had not figured this put yet. But they are beginning to realize it now. This current U.S. election is a case in point. Some political organizations understand how to use the Internet and some don’t. Same with some religions.

    The Baha’i Faith is not one of them. This has to be of the Divine. Nobody as an organization could ever be this dumb on purpose. Nobody.

    Remember, the powers of the World Age will be carried out by people whether they have ever heard of Shirley MacLaine or not while the Baha’is continue to disintegrate into hapless, incompetent, mindless, completely impaired dust.

    The Promised Day Has Come on the photonic light carrier binary square wave of the completely free and open worldwide instantaneous personal communication system called…the Internet!

    Duh.

    God loves those who WORK in groups. Not those who are totally incompetent in groups!

    Everyone keep posting!

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="57967"]Craig, good point about the 1907 crisis. Did you know Abdu’l-Baha wrote a little prayer for JP Morgan? From what I heard it was when he was in NY and happened to pass by their offices. They had a book where visitors signed in… I wonder if it is in some vault somewhere. Disclosure, I may own some JPM ;)[/quote]

    Baquia,

    I would love to see that prayer! JPMorgan may need Divine Intervention yet! Especially for your shares! Even though they are in the Hollowed Nine Core Protected Banks (good number!) word has it that they are far more exposed and at risk to the CDS’s than anyone yet fully realizes.

    As I will discuss in an upcoming lesson in Ruhi Book 1929, the CDO’s are financial AIDS and no one really knows who has been having completely unprotected financial sex with whom over the last five years with the incredible rise of this toxic financial plutonium.

    In financial terms, the whole thing is right out of Eliot Spitzer’s most extreme V.I.P. fantasy. But in the case of the CDO’s and CDS’s nobody even kept their socks on.

    This all happened because no one was held accountable on Wall Street which is the exact same people in the Baha’i Administrative order since 1921.

    But the rise of the Internet is going to change all this now. You get to ANY position of power ANYWHERE on Earth doing AMYTHING now for the next thousand years and you will have the keyboards of citizen economists that are smarter than you and citizen theologians that are smarter than you and citizen administrators that are smarter than you up your a** 24/7/365/1000.

    Political parties and organized religions had not figured this put yet. But they are beginning to realize it now. This current U.S. election is a case in point. Some political organizations understand how to use the Internet and some don’t. Same with some religions.

    The Baha’i Faith is not one of them. This has to be of the Divine. Nobody as an organization could ever be this dumb on purpose. Nobody.

    Remember, the powers of the World Age will be carried out by people whether they have ever heard of Shirley MacLaine or not while the Baha’is continue to disintegrate into hapless, incompetent, mindless, completely impaired dust.

    The Promised Day Has Come on the photonic light carrier binary square wave of the completely free and open worldwide instantaneous personal communication system called…the Internet!

    Duh.

    God loves those who WORK in groups. Not those who are totally incompetent in groups!

    Everyone keep posting!

  • Craig Parke

    Whoops! Should read: “This all happened because no one was held personally accountable on Wall Street which is the exact same SYSTEMIC PROBLEM in the Baha’i Administrative Order since 1921.”

    ie. No one put into these positions is ever held accountable for their performance. Ever. But THAT is all going to change now thanks to the PUBLIC Internet WORLDWIDE.

  • Craig Parke

    Whoops! Should read: “This all happened because no one was held personally accountable on Wall Street which is the exact same SYSTEMIC PROBLEM in the Baha’i Administrative Order since 1921.”

    ie. No one put into these positions is ever held accountable for their performance. Ever. But THAT is all going to change now thanks to the PUBLIC Internet WORLDWIDE.

  • farhan

    Grover wrote:
    “Seeing as Farhan has cheerfully insulted all those that voted for George Bush, all those that are in financial difficulties, and western liberal culture in general, and made statements about everyone’s lack of spirituality with all the authority of the UHJ, I thought it only fair to call into question his integrity and ability as a doctor.”

    Grover, if you look through all my posts on this blog, I doubt if you will find a single insult to anyone, how much less implying that a whole nation would have voted inadequately!

    My posting was not comment on any election or any economical system, but a comment pointing out to the fact that ALL human activities, including voting and money-lending, have a spiritual (or if you prefer, immaterial, philosophical, subjective, emotional…) motivation. My comment was not to you, but a reply to the following posting from Breandan:

    “According to the .75 dozen propositionally inerrant individuals (who just happen to be male) in Haifa, it’s not because people voted in incompetent leaders who instigated bad economic policies, or even because they took out loans they should have known they couldn’t pay. The economy is in trouble because people aren’t listening to the UHJ! Now that we think of it, it seems so obvious.”

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Grover wrote:
    “Seeing as Farhan has cheerfully insulted all those that voted for George Bush, all those that are in financial difficulties, and western liberal culture in general, and made statements about everyone’s lack of spirituality with all the authority of the UHJ, I thought it only fair to call into question his integrity and ability as a doctor.”

    Grover, if you look through all my posts on this blog, I doubt if you will find a single insult to anyone, how much less implying that a whole nation would have voted inadequately!

    My posting was not comment on any election or any economical system, but a comment pointing out to the fact that ALL human activities, including voting and money-lending, have a spiritual (or if you prefer, immaterial, philosophical, subjective, emotional…) motivation. My comment was not to you, but a reply to the following posting from Breandan:

    “According to the .75 dozen propositionally inerrant individuals (who just happen to be male) in Haifa, it’s not because people voted in incompetent leaders who instigated bad economic policies, or even because they took out loans they should have known they couldn’t pay. The economy is in trouble because people aren’t listening to the UHJ! Now that we think of it, it seems so obvious.”

  • farhan

    Baquia wrote:
    “Those who jam the round peg into the square hole do so because they have nothing else to offer. They don’t take the time to investigate the issue, nor to explore what is really going on. Their only answer is the same answer to everything.”

    Well, I might have to repeat myself on this point: ALL human activities have a “spiritual” (or if you prefer an immaterial, non-rational, emotional, philosophical, political, idealistic…) motivation.

    Good reasoning, intelligence, good understanding… will not change human behaviour. It is only by CHANGING HEARTS that human behaviour can change.

    This is the scope of the spiritual world: All religions refer to this “kingdom” and not to that of reasoning and rationality with which, of course, they have to remain complementary.

    Hence, at the roots of the world’s problems we have a lack of spirituality and not a lack of rationality.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Baquia wrote:
    “Those who jam the round peg into the square hole do so because they have nothing else to offer. They don’t take the time to investigate the issue, nor to explore what is really going on. Their only answer is the same answer to everything.”

    Well, I might have to repeat myself on this point: ALL human activities have a “spiritual” (or if you prefer an immaterial, non-rational, emotional, philosophical, political, idealistic…) motivation.

    Good reasoning, intelligence, good understanding… will not change human behaviour. It is only by CHANGING HEARTS that human behaviour can change.

    This is the scope of the spiritual world: All religions refer to this “kingdom” and not to that of reasoning and rationality with which, of course, they have to remain complementary.

    Hence, at the roots of the world’s problems we have a lack of spirituality and not a lack of rationality.

  • farhan

    Craig wrote:
    “These people would be much better off studying the Panic of 1907 rather than the Hidden Words on this.”

    Craig, we can agree to disagree on that point. I rather refer to Abdu’l-Baha on this one:

    “The fundamentals of the whole economic condition are divine in nature and are associated with the world of the heart and spirit. This is fully explained in the Baha’i teaching, and without knowledge of its principles no improvement in the economic state can be realized. The Baha’is will bring about this improvement and betterment but not through sedition and appeal to physical force—not through warfare, but welfare. Hearts must be so cemented together, love must become so dominant that the rich shall most willingly extend assistance to the poor and take steps to establish these economic adjustments permanently.” (PUP 91:4)

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Craig wrote:
    “These people would be much better off studying the Panic of 1907 rather than the Hidden Words on this.”

    Craig, we can agree to disagree on that point. I rather refer to Abdu’l-Baha on this one:

    “The fundamentals of the whole economic condition are divine in nature and are associated with the world of the heart and spirit. This is fully explained in the Baha’i teaching, and without knowledge of its principles no improvement in the economic state can be realized. The Baha’is will bring about this improvement and betterment but not through sedition and appeal to physical force—not through warfare, but welfare. Hearts must be so cemented together, love must become so dominant that the rich shall most willingly extend assistance to the poor and take steps to establish these economic adjustments permanently.” (PUP 91:4)

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Farhan, has the rate of smoking (and therefore the rate of diseases it engenders) in the western world gone down in the last few decades because of a rise in spirituality? or a realization of the harmful effect of smoking?

    Abdu’l-Baha refers to rationality and reason as a centerpiece of life. Otherwise we have nothing but superstition.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Farhan, has the rate of smoking (and therefore the rate of diseases it engenders) in the western world gone down in the last few decades because of a rise in spirituality? or a realization of the harmful effect of smoking?

    Abdu’l-Baha refers to rationality and reason as a centerpiece of life. Otherwise we have nothing but superstition.

  • farhan

    Craig wrote:
    “This all happened because no one was held personally accountable on Wall Street which is the exact same SYSTEMIC PROBLEM in the Baha’i Administrative Order since 1921.”

    Craig, the aim of the Baha’i teachings is to inspire hearts, and not to interfere with intellectual matters, although in order to inspire hearts in a way harmonious with intellectual matters, we have to become involved in understanding them.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Craig wrote:
    “This all happened because no one was held personally accountable on Wall Street which is the exact same SYSTEMIC PROBLEM in the Baha’i Administrative Order since 1921.”

    Craig, the aim of the Baha’i teachings is to inspire hearts, and not to interfere with intellectual matters, although in order to inspire hearts in a way harmonious with intellectual matters, we have to become involved in understanding them.

  • farhan

    Baquia wrote:
    “Farhan, has the rate of smoking (and therefore the rate of diseases it engenders) in the western world gone down in the last few decades because of a rise in spirituality? or a realization of the harmful effect of smoking? ”

    Baquia, I would say both. We have thousands of doctors who know perfectly well what is in store for them, and who smoke because they are emotional prisoners of that habit. You will notice that health education publicity is concentrating on the emotional outcomes of traffic accidents and of alcohol and drug misuse.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Baquia wrote:
    “Farhan, has the rate of smoking (and therefore the rate of diseases it engenders) in the western world gone down in the last few decades because of a rise in spirituality? or a realization of the harmful effect of smoking? ”

    Baquia, I would say both. We have thousands of doctors who know perfectly well what is in store for them, and who smoke because they are emotional prisoners of that habit. You will notice that health education publicity is concentrating on the emotional outcomes of traffic accidents and of alcohol and drug misuse.

  • farhan

    Craig wrote:
    “Nobody as an organization could ever be this dumb on purpose. Nobody.”

    Craig, I am not at all sure that teh Baha’i Faith is an organisation. It is a Divine message offered to humanity with a bunch of “crazy lovers” trying to share it with the rest of the world.

    As they have to harmonise their efforts in sharing this message, they try to be as organised as possible, and the whole purpose of systematising the teaching work through the Institute Process is part of that effort, but to me the structure is merely a TOOL that will evolve, rise and fall with time, and not at all the purpose which is a change in the minds and hearts of all humanity.

    This change in hearts and minds is the crux of the universal problem that is disrupting humanity, and the essence of my efforts within the Baha’i faith.

    I have more than enough on my plate organising my hospital, I would surely not want extra organisation efforts for my spiritual life.

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Craig wrote:
    “Nobody as an organization could ever be this dumb on purpose. Nobody.”

    Craig, I am not at all sure that teh Baha’i Faith is an organisation. It is a Divine message offered to humanity with a bunch of “crazy lovers” trying to share it with the rest of the world.

    As they have to harmonise their efforts in sharing this message, they try to be as organised as possible, and the whole purpose of systematising the teaching work through the Institute Process is part of that effort, but to me the structure is merely a TOOL that will evolve, rise and fall with time, and not at all the purpose which is a change in the minds and hearts of all humanity.

    This change in hearts and minds is the crux of the universal problem that is disrupting humanity, and the essence of my efforts within the Baha’i faith.

    I have more than enough on my plate organising my hospital, I would surely not want extra organisation efforts for my spiritual life.

  • farhan

    Baquia wrote:
    Abdu’l-Baha refers to rationality and reason as a centerpiece of life. Otherwise we have nothing but superstition.

    Baquia, I remember the two wings of the bird as complementary, although Abdul-Baha does refer to science and reason as the one of the greatest gifts of God to man. I dont remember refering to a centerpiece or one wing being more essential than another.

    My understanding is that in a computer, the hardware and software are complementary and just as essential, and in a car, gas and the engine are just as essential. I dont see one as more essential as the other.

    What we hear in Europe is that bankers in the US deliberately enticed unwary loaners into financial traps with the intent of recovering and reselling their property.

    Is this true? If so, this is a lack of spirituality on the part of bankers.

    It so happens that in our world, material development has not been accompanied by an equal progress in spiritual values. Huge engine, not enough gas.

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Baquia wrote:
    Abdu’l-Baha refers to rationality and reason as a centerpiece of life. Otherwise we have nothing but superstition.

    Baquia, I remember the two wings of the bird as complementary, although Abdul-Baha does refer to science and reason as the one of the greatest gifts of God to man. I dont remember refering to a centerpiece or one wing being more essential than another.

    My understanding is that in a computer, the hardware and software are complementary and just as essential, and in a car, gas and the engine are just as essential. I dont see one as more essential as the other.

    What we hear in Europe is that bankers in the US deliberately enticed unwary loaners into financial traps with the intent of recovering and reselling their property.

    Is this true? If so, this is a lack of spirituality on the part of bankers.

    It so happens that in our world, material development has not been accompanied by an equal progress in spiritual values. Huge engine, not enough gas.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]Farhan wrote:

    What we hear in Europe is that bankers in the US deliberately enticed unwary loaners into financial traps with the intent of recovering and reselling their property.

    Is this true?[/quote]

    No.

    Please study the links I have put up so far in Ruhi Book 1929.

    The critical financial nuclear fission problem is NOT the mortgages themselves.

    The problem IS the derivative and insurance instruments that grew as unregulated mushrooms on those mortgages.

    You have to get beyond a mere superficial TV news comprehension of the problem.

    It is much the like the current version of the Baha’i Faith.

    The problem in the Baha’i Faith right now is not the free and open Teachings of Baha’u’llah for people to peruse and study in their own personal heart and mind. The problem is the system of incredibly incompetent dysfunctional sociopathic controllers that have grown like mushrooms as a cancer in an organization that has now totally usurped those Teachings. The means to an end became the end in itself because of the grasping personal psychological needs of these mentally unstable lifetime incumbent people.

    Both these fates have come because people were never held accountable for ANYTHING EVER in these two respective eras.

    Wall Street is collapsing. Today may be a very bad day indeed based upon futures so far this morning.

    The current top down hapless version of the Baha’i Faith is collapsing. Very solid and previously very dedicated people have left in droves. These mentally ill deranged idiots have destroyed the seed corn.

    But Baha’u’llah, as an Archetypal Savant Marker in the Prediction of Fates, warned of this in the Tablet of the Holy Mariner. And so it has all come to pass.

    The Baha’i Faith is in very deep trouble and the clueless class of lifetime incumbent people at the top of it have no awareness of anything. Zero. Nada. Zippo.

    And so the Divine Message for this World Age is moving on to other souls and other spiritual movements and spiritual organizations.

    As I say: “The liberating power of the World Age is now being carried out by other people whether they have ever heard of Shirley MacLaine or not.”

    Everyone have a nice day! I hope we all still have some money by 4PM this afternoon EST. I’m going to work now! My last pay check did cash so at least I’m good for two weeks yet!

    Looks like the whole world is “Going Down To The Crossroads”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krwywj_gIjk

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]Farhan wrote:

    What we hear in Europe is that bankers in the US deliberately enticed unwary loaners into financial traps with the intent of recovering and reselling their property.

    Is this true?[/quote]

    No.

    Please study the links I have put up so far in Ruhi Book 1929.

    The critical financial nuclear fission problem is NOT the mortgages themselves.

    The problem IS the derivative and insurance instruments that grew as unregulated mushrooms on those mortgages.

    You have to get beyond a mere superficial TV news comprehension of the problem.

    It is much the like the current version of the Baha’i Faith.

    The problem in the Baha’i Faith right now is not the free and open Teachings of Baha’u’llah for people to peruse and study in their own personal heart and mind. The problem is the system of incredibly incompetent dysfunctional sociopathic controllers that have grown like mushrooms as a cancer in an organization that has now totally usurped those Teachings. The means to an end became the end in itself because of the grasping personal psychological needs of these mentally unstable lifetime incumbent people.

    Both these fates have come because people were never held accountable for ANYTHING EVER in these two respective eras.

    Wall Street is collapsing. Today may be a very bad day indeed based upon futures so far this morning.

    The current top down hapless version of the Baha’i Faith is collapsing. Very solid and previously very dedicated people have left in droves. These mentally ill deranged idiots have destroyed the seed corn.

    But Baha’u’llah, as an Archetypal Savant Marker in the Prediction of Fates, warned of this in the Tablet of the Holy Mariner. And so it has all come to pass.

    The Baha’i Faith is in very deep trouble and the clueless class of lifetime incumbent people at the top of it have no awareness of anything. Zero. Nada. Zippo.

    And so the Divine Message for this World Age is moving on to other souls and other spiritual movements and spiritual organizations.

    As I say: “The liberating power of the World Age is now being carried out by other people whether they have ever heard of Shirley MacLaine or not.”

    Everyone have a nice day! I hope we all still have some money by 4PM this afternoon EST. I’m going to work now! My last pay check did cash so at least I’m good for two weeks yet!

    Looks like the whole world is “Going Down To The Crossroads”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krwywj_gIjk

  • farhan

    Craig wrote:

    The critical financial nuclear fission problem is NOT the mortgages themselves

    Craig, Thanks for the feed-back; I promise to look up your links ASAP. I am no expert on financial questions. I was told by our experts that people played Monopoly on other people’s money, and lost for them. You can’t create money from nowhere: if you make profit through manipulating money, someone else is bound to be losing somewhere. When you win a huge lump in a lottery, millions will have lost small lumps of money.

    Craig wrote: ?And so the Divine Message for this World Age is moving on to other souls and other spiritual movements and spiritual organizations.?

    Craig, that would be absolutely no problem to me, as long as the life giving message of God did permeate all humanity. The Bab did say to his disciples that if they did not serve, God would raise others to do His work; Baha’u’llah did say that if we did not seize the opportunity to serve, God would raise the pebbles to do it.

    We have always had, and will always have people who will want to get benefits from serving the Faith. I am in no position to judge fellow Baha’is serving or not on the administrative bodies, nor do I wish to do so. God’s plan cannot be foiled.

    We have spiritual emergencies at hand and life giving teachings to serve to all who ask for them, and one essential ingredient of this message is that world economy has to be spiritually founded on humanitarian values and not on self-serving principles.

    My survival ultimately rests on the survival of all humanity, and I will ultimately have to pay for the losses endured by my neighbour. This is to me a spiritual and not a financial principle.

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Craig wrote:

    The critical financial nuclear fission problem is NOT the mortgages themselves

    Craig, Thanks for the feed-back; I promise to look up your links ASAP. I am no expert on financial questions. I was told by our experts that people played Monopoly on other people’s money, and lost for them. You can’t create money from nowhere: if you make profit through manipulating money, someone else is bound to be losing somewhere. When you win a huge lump in a lottery, millions will have lost small lumps of money.

    Craig wrote: ?And so the Divine Message for this World Age is moving on to other souls and other spiritual movements and spiritual organizations.?

    Craig, that would be absolutely no problem to me, as long as the life giving message of God did permeate all humanity. The Bab did say to his disciples that if they did not serve, God would raise others to do His work; Baha’u’llah did say that if we did not seize the opportunity to serve, God would raise the pebbles to do it.

    We have always had, and will always have people who will want to get benefits from serving the Faith. I am in no position to judge fellow Baha’is serving or not on the administrative bodies, nor do I wish to do so. God’s plan cannot be foiled.

    We have spiritual emergencies at hand and life giving teachings to serve to all who ask for them, and one essential ingredient of this message is that world economy has to be spiritually founded on humanitarian values and not on self-serving principles.

    My survival ultimately rests on the survival of all humanity, and I will ultimately have to pay for the losses endured by my neighbour. This is to me a spiritual and not a financial principle.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="58010"]Craig wrote:
    “Nobody as an organization could ever be this dumb on purpose. Nobody.”

    Craig, I am not at all sure that teh Baha’i Faith is an organisation. It is a Divine message offered to humanity with a bunch of “crazy lovers” trying to share it with the rest of the world.

    As they have to harmonise their efforts in sharing this message, they try to be as organised as possible, and the whole purpose of systematising the teaching work through the Institute Process is part of that effort, but to me the structure is merely a TOOL that will evolve, rise and fall with time, and not at all the purpose which is a change in the minds and hearts of all humanity.

    This change in hearts and minds is the crux of the universal problem that is disrupting humanity, and the essence of my efforts within the Baha’i faith.

    I have more than enough on my plate organising my hospital, I would surely not want extra organisation efforts for my spiritual life.[/quote]

    Farhan,

    The Baha’i Faith is a mere top down organization now. The Teachings are now completely gone from it. Baha’u’llah as any part of it is completely gone. The Writings and their deep structure link to all other religions and esoteric spiritual insights have been replaced by the completely straight jacketd fundamentalist Stalinist mindset of the “Institute Process.” No thinking person will ever join a religion like this now. It is just mindless spiritual communism now as authored by not terribly bright high school teachers. The result will be catastrophe. We are now the Jehovah’s Witnesses of Shia Islam. It is a terrible tragedy in world history. It just ain’t going to turn our very well now.

    Tell me, Farhan, what the Baha’i Faith is going to do now for those sent to “do God’s work” as All Highest Cosmic Grand Master humanitarian POS Glenford Mitchell said?

    http://www.cnn.com/2008/HEALTH/conditions/10/24/ptsd.struggle/index.html

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="58010"]Craig wrote:
    “Nobody as an organization could ever be this dumb on purpose. Nobody.”

    Craig, I am not at all sure that teh Baha’i Faith is an organisation. It is a Divine message offered to humanity with a bunch of “crazy lovers” trying to share it with the rest of the world.

    As they have to harmonise their efforts in sharing this message, they try to be as organised as possible, and the whole purpose of systematising the teaching work through the Institute Process is part of that effort, but to me the structure is merely a TOOL that will evolve, rise and fall with time, and not at all the purpose which is a change in the minds and hearts of all humanity.

    This change in hearts and minds is the crux of the universal problem that is disrupting humanity, and the essence of my efforts within the Baha’i faith.

    I have more than enough on my plate organising my hospital, I would surely not want extra organisation efforts for my spiritual life.[/quote]

    Farhan,

    The Baha’i Faith is a mere top down organization now. The Teachings are now completely gone from it. Baha’u’llah as any part of it is completely gone. The Writings and their deep structure link to all other religions and esoteric spiritual insights have been replaced by the completely straight jacketd fundamentalist Stalinist mindset of the “Institute Process.” No thinking person will ever join a religion like this now. It is just mindless spiritual communism now as authored by not terribly bright high school teachers. The result will be catastrophe. We are now the Jehovah’s Witnesses of Shia Islam. It is a terrible tragedy in world history. It just ain’t going to turn our very well now.

    Tell me, Farhan, what the Baha’i Faith is going to do now for those sent to “do God’s work” as All Highest Cosmic Grand Master humanitarian POS Glenford Mitchell said?

    http://www.cnn.com/2008/HEALTH/conditions/10/24/ptsd.struggle/index.html

  • farhan

    Craig wrote:

    The Baha’i Faith is a mere top down organization now. The Teachings are now completely gone from it.

    Farhan: I am not sure you are talking about the Baha’is I associate with or those you see in your nightmares.

    Craig: spiritual insights have been replaced by the completely straight jacketd fundamentalist Stalinist mindset of the “Institute Process.”

    Farhan: the Institute Process as applied (or inflicted?) by some misled well-meaning might look what you describe; I did call them ?apparatchiks? and the institutions called them ?zealots? but all those mistakes are way behind us now.

    Craig: No thinking person will ever join a religion like this now.

    Farhan: I am sorry, Craig, but you are mistaken. Those very childish question sheets are exactly the kind of pedagogical tools used in universities now and current when doctors do their post university courses. In any case, with the institute process, the teachings are being handed out to all humanity and we will see what they will do with them, within or outside the Baha’i Community: who cares on the shape of the bottle as long as we get inebriated.

    Craig: It is a terrible tragedy in world history. It just ain’t going to turn our very well now.

    Farhan: Cheer up, Craig, things are going to change soon.

    Craig: Tell me, Farhan, what the Baha’i Faith is going to do now for those sent to “do God’s work” as All Highest Cosmic Grand Master humanitarian POS Glenford Mitchell said?

    Farhan: Wow, it is some time that question had not come up yet; have you asked Glenford Mitchell what he meant exactly?

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Craig wrote:

    The Baha’i Faith is a mere top down organization now. The Teachings are now completely gone from it.

    Farhan: I am not sure you are talking about the Baha’is I associate with or those you see in your nightmares.

    Craig: spiritual insights have been replaced by the completely straight jacketd fundamentalist Stalinist mindset of the “Institute Process.”

    Farhan: the Institute Process as applied (or inflicted?) by some misled well-meaning might look what you describe; I did call them ?apparatchiks? and the institutions called them ?zealots? but all those mistakes are way behind us now.

    Craig: No thinking person will ever join a religion like this now.

    Farhan: I am sorry, Craig, but you are mistaken. Those very childish question sheets are exactly the kind of pedagogical tools used in universities now and current when doctors do their post university courses. In any case, with the institute process, the teachings are being handed out to all humanity and we will see what they will do with them, within or outside the Baha’i Community: who cares on the shape of the bottle as long as we get inebriated.

    Craig: It is a terrible tragedy in world history. It just ain’t going to turn our very well now.

    Farhan: Cheer up, Craig, things are going to change soon.

    Craig: Tell me, Farhan, what the Baha’i Faith is going to do now for those sent to “do God’s work” as All Highest Cosmic Grand Master humanitarian POS Glenford Mitchell said?

    Farhan: Wow, it is some time that question had not come up yet; have you asked Glenford Mitchell what he meant exactly?

  • Andrew

    “We are now the Jehovah’s Witnesses of Shia Islam.”

    Brilliant comment, Craig, absolutely brilliant; and certainly no more insulting than the patronizing comments of religious apologists. But since, of course, apologists and casuists simply speak on behalf of religious truthiness, their insults hardly qualify as such, do they? After all, if I were to inform you that your relationship with your partner is inherently sinful, that it is a handicap to be overcome, that wouldn’t count as an insult, would it? I would just be telling you the truthiness! And if you were to find this a disagreeable or inconvenient truthiness, you would just need to be more spiritual. What could possibly be simpler than that?

    Who’s that knocking on my door? No surprise, it’s those mainstream Baha’is, to teach me about progressive revelation and to present me with a plaster saint, pockmarked with patches.

  • Andrew

    “We are now the Jehovah’s Witnesses of Shia Islam.”

    Brilliant comment, Craig, absolutely brilliant; and certainly no more insulting than the patronizing comments of religious apologists. But since, of course, apologists and casuists simply speak on behalf of religious truthiness, their insults hardly qualify as such, do they? After all, if I were to inform you that your relationship with your partner is inherently sinful, that it is a handicap to be overcome, that wouldn’t count as an insult, would it? I would just be telling you the truthiness! And if you were to find this a disagreeable or inconvenient truthiness, you would just need to be more spiritual. What could possibly be simpler than that?

    Who’s that knocking on my door? No surprise, it’s those mainstream Baha’is, to teach me about progressive revelation and to present me with a plaster saint, pockmarked with patches.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    [quote comment="58011"]What we hear in Europe is that bankers in the US deliberately enticed unwary loaners into financial traps with the intent of recovering and reselling their property.

    Is this true?[/quote]

    No, it is not. That goes well beyond a simplification into fantasyland. My point about rationality is that it is the basis of independent investigation of truth. This is something we were talking about on Talisman9 actually.

    In the Promulgation of Universal Peace (p180):

    “The first teaching of Baha’u’llah is the investigation of reality.”

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    [quote comment="58011"]What we hear in Europe is that bankers in the US deliberately enticed unwary loaners into financial traps with the intent of recovering and reselling their property.

    Is this true?[/quote]

    No, it is not. That goes well beyond a simplification into fantasyland. My point about rationality is that it is the basis of independent investigation of truth. This is something we were talking about on Talisman9 actually.

    In the Promulgation of Universal Peace (p180):

    “The first teaching of Baha’u’llah is the investigation of reality.”

  • Brendan Cook

    “Farhan, has the rate of smoking (and therefore the rate of diseases it engenders) in the western world gone down in the last few decades because of a rise in spirituality? or a realization of the harmful effect of smoking? Abdu’l-Baha refers to rationality and reason as a centerpiece of life. Otherwise we have nothing but superstition.”

    I like your point, Baquia. It seems to me that just as the best political philosophies keep the state in its proper place and don’t let government intrude on private life, so too the best religious philosophies limit the role of the church. One of the most attractive things about the Baha’i Faith, at least as I understood it, is that religion shouldn’t be the be all and end all, but should make room for science, art, philosophy, and various other ways of knowing and thinking.

  • Brendan Cook

    “Farhan, has the rate of smoking (and therefore the rate of diseases it engenders) in the western world gone down in the last few decades because of a rise in spirituality? or a realization of the harmful effect of smoking? Abdu’l-Baha refers to rationality and reason as a centerpiece of life. Otherwise we have nothing but superstition.”

    I like your point, Baquia. It seems to me that just as the best political philosophies keep the state in its proper place and don’t let government intrude on private life, so too the best religious philosophies limit the role of the church. One of the most attractive things about the Baha’i Faith, at least as I understood it, is that religion shouldn’t be the be all and end all, but should make room for science, art, philosophy, and various other ways of knowing and thinking.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]“I like your point, Baquia. It seems to me that just as the best political philosophies keep the state in its proper place and don’t let government intrude on private life, so too the best religious philosophies limit the role of the church. One of the most attractive things about the Baha’i Faith, at least as I understood it, is that religion shouldn’t be the be all and end all, but should make room for science, art, philosophy, and various other ways of knowing and thinking.[/quote]

    Hi Brendan!

    Good to hear from you! I hope you and your wife are doing well!

    I must admit I have thought of you, your wife, and your mother and father in the back of my mind lately in this context if things (gulp) put me in Plan B mode down here. (God help us!)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMiqfusRWM4

    What you say in this post used to be the Baha’i Faith I once joined. It was a totally free thinking religion. But that was then. This is now. That was OLDTHINK. This is NEWTHINK. That was the Teachings of the Founders. What any of them Taught is all completely irrelevant now. The Baha’i Faith is what nine men in Haifa say it is. Their “elucidations” as forcefully explained by ITC members and their very own personal opinions imprinted into worldwide Baha’i audiences trump all. The new Baha’i Faith is what unemployed laid off high school teachers say it is in the indoctrination workbooks they write and everyone worldwide is bulllied into using as the new substitute Holy Text.

    Have you been called in for any further interrogations lately, or have they just dropped you like yesterday’s news now?

    In the context of current world events I guess a this tune will suffice:

    “Once I had a religion that ran on time…brother can you spare a dime?”

    The main thing these days is to stay “Old Timey” as spiritually advised in “O Brother, Where Art Thou” as the World Age progresses.

    The UHJ should have just stayed “Old Timey” and the Baha’is might get a hearing now in the world financial crisis. But instead, we are not even players anymore. (Yawn)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krwywj_gIjk

    Even spiritually blind people can hear “Old Timey” when they hear it… (man did this movie company have some fun in setting the deep truths of Ulysses to the 1930′s!)

    Yep. It is REALLY important to be “Old Timey” for the next 11 days!

    Pray for us down here in the Lower 48!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q3eTSbC3neA

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]“I like your point, Baquia. It seems to me that just as the best political philosophies keep the state in its proper place and don’t let government intrude on private life, so too the best religious philosophies limit the role of the church. One of the most attractive things about the Baha’i Faith, at least as I understood it, is that religion shouldn’t be the be all and end all, but should make room for science, art, philosophy, and various other ways of knowing and thinking.[/quote]

    Hi Brendan!

    Good to hear from you! I hope you and your wife are doing well!

    I must admit I have thought of you, your wife, and your mother and father in the back of my mind lately in this context if things (gulp) put me in Plan B mode down here. (God help us!)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMiqfusRWM4

    What you say in this post used to be the Baha’i Faith I once joined. It was a totally free thinking religion. But that was then. This is now. That was OLDTHINK. This is NEWTHINK. That was the Teachings of the Founders. What any of them Taught is all completely irrelevant now. The Baha’i Faith is what nine men in Haifa say it is. Their “elucidations” as forcefully explained by ITC members and their very own personal opinions imprinted into worldwide Baha’i audiences trump all. The new Baha’i Faith is what unemployed laid off high school teachers say it is in the indoctrination workbooks they write and everyone worldwide is bulllied into using as the new substitute Holy Text.

    Have you been called in for any further interrogations lately, or have they just dropped you like yesterday’s news now?

    In the context of current world events I guess a this tune will suffice:

    “Once I had a religion that ran on time…brother can you spare a dime?”

    The main thing these days is to stay “Old Timey” as spiritually advised in “O Brother, Where Art Thou” as the World Age progresses.

    The UHJ should have just stayed “Old Timey” and the Baha’is might get a hearing now in the world financial crisis. But instead, we are not even players anymore. (Yawn)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krwywj_gIjk

    Even spiritually blind people can hear “Old Timey” when they hear it… (man did this movie company have some fun in setting the deep truths of Ulysses to the 1930′s!)

    Yep. It is REALLY important to be “Old Timey” for the next 11 days!

    Pray for us down here in the Lower 48!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q3eTSbC3neA

  • Grover

    [quote post="534"]I am sorry, Craig, but you are mistaken. Those very childish question sheets are exactly the kind of pedagogical tools used in universities now and current when doctors do their post university courses.[/quote]

    That is absolutely false Farhan. Having been to numerous university courses as a science teacher, there is no way in hell academics would ever use such a method. The students would leave in droves.

    There are major differences between university and Ruhi style teaching. The first being Ruhi assumes Baha’i writings and interpretations in Ruhi are the truth and based on the writings of a man that is assumed to be messenger of God. University teaching is based on work of millions of individuals, peer reviewed, and revised numerous times. The knowledge in university education is constantly challenged and updated. People are encouraged to challenge that knowledge. It is regarded as a good thing, unlike the Baha’i Faith.

    University education involves a combination of lectures, tutorials, assignments and exams. Mostly it is straight transmission of facts and theories (called the transmissive approach).

    Current fashion in science education involves assessment of prior learning (what the student already knows), some form of constructivist type learning (lets the student build or construct their own knowledge) that builds on or corrects what the student already knows. Good teachers use tools that challenge students ideas and force students to reevaluate what they know or understand. There is also the experiential component through laboratories etc.

    None of this is done in Ruhi, there is no assessment of prior learning, there is no method that allows people to build their own understanding, its just straight regurgitation.

    At best, at least in my country, Ruhi would be equated with primary school (for ages 5-12) basic comprehension. We respect our students too much to use such an infantile tool as Ruhi. We want them to be able to think, not be lobotomised drones.

  • Grover

    [quote post="534"]I am sorry, Craig, but you are mistaken. Those very childish question sheets are exactly the kind of pedagogical tools used in universities now and current when doctors do their post university courses.[/quote]

    That is absolutely false Farhan. Having been to numerous university courses as a science teacher, there is no way in hell academics would ever use such a method. The students would leave in droves.

    There are major differences between university and Ruhi style teaching. The first being Ruhi assumes Baha’i writings and interpretations in Ruhi are the truth and based on the writings of a man that is assumed to be messenger of God. University teaching is based on work of millions of individuals, peer reviewed, and revised numerous times. The knowledge in university education is constantly challenged and updated. People are encouraged to challenge that knowledge. It is regarded as a good thing, unlike the Baha’i Faith.

    University education involves a combination of lectures, tutorials, assignments and exams. Mostly it is straight transmission of facts and theories (called the transmissive approach).

    Current fashion in science education involves assessment of prior learning (what the student already knows), some form of constructivist type learning (lets the student build or construct their own knowledge) that builds on or corrects what the student already knows. Good teachers use tools that challenge students ideas and force students to reevaluate what they know or understand. There is also the experiential component through laboratories etc.

    None of this is done in Ruhi, there is no assessment of prior learning, there is no method that allows people to build their own understanding, its just straight regurgitation.

    At best, at least in my country, Ruhi would be equated with primary school (for ages 5-12) basic comprehension. We respect our students too much to use such an infantile tool as Ruhi. We want them to be able to think, not be lobotomised drones.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Perhaps Farhan meant the sort of universities they had in the ancient world… before Socrates, with his damned propensity to ask questions, came along.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Perhaps Farhan meant the sort of universities they had in the ancient world… before Socrates, with his damned propensity to ask questions, came along.

  • farhan

    Grover wrote:
    There are major differences between university and Ruhi style teaching.

    Grover, what I am referring to is not standard lectures, but post university courses for doctors who can evaluate and complete their knowledge by themselves or in groups away from the university. It is not a replacement for normal courses, but a particular form of distant teaching. I will send you the links ASAP

    Ruhi is an addition to summer schools, Baha’i studies, deepenings etc. Some misled zealots did misunderstand, imagining that this was to replace whatever we had before and wanted to make it mandatory for every one, under their own control.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Grover wrote:
    There are major differences between university and Ruhi style teaching.

    Grover, what I am referring to is not standard lectures, but post university courses for doctors who can evaluate and complete their knowledge by themselves or in groups away from the university. It is not a replacement for normal courses, but a particular form of distant teaching. I will send you the links ASAP

    Ruhi is an addition to summer schools, Baha’i studies, deepenings etc. Some misled zealots did misunderstand, imagining that this was to replace whatever we had before and wanted to make it mandatory for every one, under their own control.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]Grover wrote:
    There are major differences between university and Ruhi style teaching.

    Grover, what I am referring to is not standard lectures, but post university courses for doctors who can evaluate and complete their knowledge by themselves or in groups away from the university. It is not a replacement for normal courses, but a particular form of distant teaching. I will send you the links ASAP

    Ruhi is an addition to summer schools, Baha’i studies, deepenings etc. Some misled zealots did misunderstand, imagining that this was to replace whatever we had before and wanted to make it mandatory for every one, under their own control.[/quote]

    Good morning Farhan,

    The Ruhi Full Sequence of Courses IS the Baha’i Faith now. It was a fatal, fatal mistake. It killed all creativity in the Baha’i Faith. Worldwide at every level. Forever. It is the end of the road. The Baha’i Faith is in very big trouble and it is incapable of producing any leadership capable of dealing with anything. It is an incredible, incredible tragedy. I honestly believe that it is the dysfunctional brain chemistry that eventually manifests in the leadership of totalitarian organizations. It has happened in every political and religious organization in human history that does not have strict checks and balances. One of the most basic of which is term limits. Without these things good and honest souls will always end up on the Titanic. And now in the case of the Administrative order of the Baha’i Faith they have. The leadership is abusive and coercive. They will all be cursed in world history for centuries unless somebody starts to wake up and function very soon. there is no indication at any level that this can happen now anywhere in the world. Bullying people is not spiritual. Never has been. Never will be. But other spiritual and political communities will carry out the powers of the World Age. It will go on and bear fruit but the Baha’is themselves are a no show in world history in the very work they were supposed to be doing. Defeat in war is two words: Too late.

    So it goes.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]Grover wrote:
    There are major differences between university and Ruhi style teaching.

    Grover, what I am referring to is not standard lectures, but post university courses for doctors who can evaluate and complete their knowledge by themselves or in groups away from the university. It is not a replacement for normal courses, but a particular form of distant teaching. I will send you the links ASAP

    Ruhi is an addition to summer schools, Baha’i studies, deepenings etc. Some misled zealots did misunderstand, imagining that this was to replace whatever we had before and wanted to make it mandatory for every one, under their own control.[/quote]

    Good morning Farhan,

    The Ruhi Full Sequence of Courses IS the Baha’i Faith now. It was a fatal, fatal mistake. It killed all creativity in the Baha’i Faith. Worldwide at every level. Forever. It is the end of the road. The Baha’i Faith is in very big trouble and it is incapable of producing any leadership capable of dealing with anything. It is an incredible, incredible tragedy. I honestly believe that it is the dysfunctional brain chemistry that eventually manifests in the leadership of totalitarian organizations. It has happened in every political and religious organization in human history that does not have strict checks and balances. One of the most basic of which is term limits. Without these things good and honest souls will always end up on the Titanic. And now in the case of the Administrative order of the Baha’i Faith they have. The leadership is abusive and coercive. They will all be cursed in world history for centuries unless somebody starts to wake up and function very soon. there is no indication at any level that this can happen now anywhere in the world. Bullying people is not spiritual. Never has been. Never will be. But other spiritual and political communities will carry out the powers of the World Age. It will go on and bear fruit but the Baha’is themselves are a no show in world history in the very work they were supposed to be doing. Defeat in war is two words: Too late.

    So it goes.

  • Brendan

    Craig,

    And hello to you too! It’s always good to hear from you, and I’m happy to report that my wife and parents are all fine. I’m sorry to tell you that I haven’t had any more friendly chats with an ABM or some such person, but then that’s really my fault. You see, while I certainly try, I haven’t yet been able to muster the kind of potent *ressentiment* that would allow me to continue upon my path as a public trouble making. I mean, the last thing I’d want is to let the Moo-man down — like you I’d love to be in his next article — but I always end of getting busy with school and family and letting things slide.

    I’m glad you’re doing your best to build up your *ressentiment* too, I’m sure that the title of hateful apostate is yours for the taking. I also want you to know that I’m a great believer in all things *old-timey* and that I watch *O Brother* religiously. And of course I’m very concerned about what’s going to happen on November 4th, no question about it. Obama says that “the world is watching” America, and he’s right. We had an election here in Canada and no one wanted to watch the leaders’ debate because the Palin-Biden thing was on the same night. We’re all praying for Obama’s safety and hoping that the violence McCain and Palin are stirring up at their rallies doesn’t develop in the ways that we fear it might, if you know what I mean.

    Thanks for noticing my post. My whole family wishes you all the best.

    Brendan

  • Brendan

    Craig,

    And hello to you too! It’s always good to hear from you, and I’m happy to report that my wife and parents are all fine. I’m sorry to tell you that I haven’t had any more friendly chats with an ABM or some such person, but then that’s really my fault. You see, while I certainly try, I haven’t yet been able to muster the kind of potent *ressentiment* that would allow me to continue upon my path as a public trouble making. I mean, the last thing I’d want is to let the Moo-man down — like you I’d love to be in his next article — but I always end of getting busy with school and family and letting things slide.

    I’m glad you’re doing your best to build up your *ressentiment* too, I’m sure that the title of hateful apostate is yours for the taking. I also want you to know that I’m a great believer in all things *old-timey* and that I watch *O Brother* religiously. And of course I’m very concerned about what’s going to happen on November 4th, no question about it. Obama says that “the world is watching” America, and he’s right. We had an election here in Canada and no one wanted to watch the leaders’ debate because the Palin-Biden thing was on the same night. We’re all praying for Obama’s safety and hoping that the violence McCain and Palin are stirring up at their rallies doesn’t develop in the ways that we fear it might, if you know what I mean.

    Thanks for noticing my post. My whole family wishes you all the best.

    Brendan

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]Craig,

    I also want you to know that I’m a great believer in all things *old-timey* and that I watch *O Brother* religiously.

    [/quote]

    Hi Brendan,

    As long as you remain “old-timey”, you are truly rightly guided on the Golden Road, you are indeed keeping the Faith, and Kurt Vonnegut would be proud of you!

    Yep, I have been very busy myself too. I have been very much involved in Obama’s efforts in this area. After 37 years of trying in the BF it is now the only thing left to do to try to help my nation in some way before I die. In just seven more days I may be able to get some sleep.

    I think the world is way beyond politics now. Something involving Spirit is now involved. The Baha’is may still preach non-involvement in politics. Fine. But how can you preach, as I was alluding to my good friend Wahid (who is now truly something of a mentor to me in passing on knowledge of great esoteric writers), non-involvement in comedy? The world is pure comedy now and we must all get involved. Especially if it may well be the end of the world financially. Non-involvement in comedy is un-thinkable. In fact, comedy is the best way to truly stay “old-timey”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKvgtfZpV1I

    Please give your family my best regards!

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]Craig,

    I also want you to know that I’m a great believer in all things *old-timey* and that I watch *O Brother* religiously.

    [/quote]

    Hi Brendan,

    As long as you remain “old-timey”, you are truly rightly guided on the Golden Road, you are indeed keeping the Faith, and Kurt Vonnegut would be proud of you!

    Yep, I have been very busy myself too. I have been very much involved in Obama’s efforts in this area. After 37 years of trying in the BF it is now the only thing left to do to try to help my nation in some way before I die. In just seven more days I may be able to get some sleep.

    I think the world is way beyond politics now. Something involving Spirit is now involved. The Baha’is may still preach non-involvement in politics. Fine. But how can you preach, as I was alluding to my good friend Wahid (who is now truly something of a mentor to me in passing on knowledge of great esoteric writers), non-involvement in comedy? The world is pure comedy now and we must all get involved. Especially if it may well be the end of the world financially. Non-involvement in comedy is un-thinkable. In fact, comedy is the best way to truly stay “old-timey”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKvgtfZpV1I

    Please give your family my best regards!

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""][quote comment=""]Craig,

    I also want you to know that I’m a great believer in all things *old-timey* and that I watch *O Brother* religiously.

    [/quote]

    I thought this one was pretty good to. I just can’t abide by the teaching of “non-involvement in comedy” these days. I had to get involved. It is the only “old-timey” thing to do when someone says as in “O Brother” “Is you or is you not mah con-stit-u-en-cy?”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1FQR8TWDUKo&feature=channel

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""][quote comment=""]Craig,

    I also want you to know that I’m a great believer in all things *old-timey* and that I watch *O Brother* religiously.

    [/quote]

    I thought this one was pretty good to. I just can’t abide by the teaching of “non-involvement in comedy” these days. I had to get involved. It is the only “old-timey” thing to do when someone says as in “O Brother” “Is you or is you not mah con-stit-u-en-cy?”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1FQR8TWDUKo&feature=channel

  • David

    I thought I’d share these two e-mails I received last weekend. The older one (at the bottom) placed a quote from Shoghi Effendi in the midst of selective quotes from the recent UHJ letter. I guess in order to scare people a little more it was necessary to play the fear card (even if it was 51 years old). Someone noticed the out of place quote and Mr. Khadem had to fess up.

    Dear friends,

    All the quotes sent to you in this email were from the October 20th message, except “morally and spiritually bankrupt society, now hovering on the brink of self-destruction.” This quote is from our beloved Guardian written in 1957. The full text follows:

    I appeal, as I close this review of the superb feats already accomplished, in the course of so many campaigns, by the heroic band of the warriors of Bah??’u’ll??h, battling in His Name and by His aid for the purification, the unification and the spiritualization of a morally and spiritually bankrupt society, now hovering on the brink of self-destruction, for a renewed dedication, at this critical hour in the fortunes of mankind, on the part of the entire company of my spiritual brethren in every continent of the globe, to the high ideals of the Cause they have espoused, as well as to the immediate accomplishment of the goals of the Crusade on which they have embarked, be they in active service or not, of either sex, young as well as old, rich or poor, whether veteran or newly enrolled — a dedication reminiscent of the pledges which the Dawn-breakers of an earlier Apostolic Age, assembled in conference at Badasht, and faced with issues of a different but equally challenging nature, willingly and solemnly made for the prosecution of the collective task with which they were confronted.

    (Shoghi Effendi, Messages to the Baha’i World – 1950-1957, p. 120)

    On Oct 26, 2008, at 11:28 AM, Riaz Khadem wrote:

    Dearly loved friends in Georgia,

    Once again, the Baha’i community has received a wonderful message from God’s infallible institution, the Universal House of Justice – “the source of all good and freed from all error.”

    Amidst the turmoil of a “morally and spiritually bankrupt society, now hovering on the brink of self-destruction,” this timely message serves as a beacon of light urging the friends to “recognize the full implications of their mission,” and to “not falter in accomplishing their ambitious goals, no matter how severe the crises engulfing the world around them.”

    We are asked to be “on guard lest the development of capacity in the community not keep pace with the rise in receptivity of a disillusioned humanity. The friends are asked to “not deviate from the path of learning on which they are set, nor be distracted by the ephemeral pursuits of a bewildered society.”

    Dear friends, I humbly urge Local Spiritual Assemblies and each of the believers in Georgia to carefully study this wonderful letter dated October 20th, 2008, and reflect more profoundly than ever before on its implications on our lives and our mission for the world.

    Loving greetings,
    riaz

  • David

    I thought I’d share these two e-mails I received last weekend. The older one (at the bottom) placed a quote from Shoghi Effendi in the midst of selective quotes from the recent UHJ letter. I guess in order to scare people a little more it was necessary to play the fear card (even if it was 51 years old). Someone noticed the out of place quote and Mr. Khadem had to fess up.

    Dear friends,

    All the quotes sent to you in this email were from the October 20th message, except “morally and spiritually bankrupt society, now hovering on the brink of self-destruction.” This quote is from our beloved Guardian written in 1957. The full text follows:

    I appeal, as I close this review of the superb feats already accomplished, in the course of so many campaigns, by the heroic band of the warriors of Bah??’u’ll??h, battling in His Name and by His aid for the purification, the unification and the spiritualization of a morally and spiritually bankrupt society, now hovering on the brink of self-destruction, for a renewed dedication, at this critical hour in the fortunes of mankind, on the part of the entire company of my spiritual brethren in every continent of the globe, to the high ideals of the Cause they have espoused, as well as to the immediate accomplishment of the goals of the Crusade on which they have embarked, be they in active service or not, of either sex, young as well as old, rich or poor, whether veteran or newly enrolled — a dedication reminiscent of the pledges which the Dawn-breakers of an earlier Apostolic Age, assembled in conference at Badasht, and faced with issues of a different but equally challenging nature, willingly and solemnly made for the prosecution of the collective task with which they were confronted.

    (Shoghi Effendi, Messages to the Baha’i World – 1950-1957, p. 120)

    On Oct 26, 2008, at 11:28 AM, Riaz Khadem wrote:

    Dearly loved friends in Georgia,

    Once again, the Baha’i community has received a wonderful message from God’s infallible institution, the Universal House of Justice – “the source of all good and freed from all error.”

    Amidst the turmoil of a “morally and spiritually bankrupt society, now hovering on the brink of self-destruction,” this timely message serves as a beacon of light urging the friends to “recognize the full implications of their mission,” and to “not falter in accomplishing their ambitious goals, no matter how severe the crises engulfing the world around them.”

    We are asked to be “on guard lest the development of capacity in the community not keep pace with the rise in receptivity of a disillusioned humanity. The friends are asked to “not deviate from the path of learning on which they are set, nor be distracted by the ephemeral pursuits of a bewildered society.”

    Dear friends, I humbly urge Local Spiritual Assemblies and each of the believers in Georgia to carefully study this wonderful letter dated October 20th, 2008, and reflect more profoundly than ever before on its implications on our lives and our mission for the world.

    Loving greetings,
    riaz

  • http://www.sonjavank.blogspot.com sonja

    Just a question, has there been any information given about why the 41 conferences are to be organized, other than for their own sake or to keep people busy?

    re: Brendan’s comment: “One of the most attractive things about the Baha’i Faith, at least as I understood it, is that religion shouldn’t be the be all and end all, but should make room for science, art, philosophy, and various other ways of knowing and thinking.”

    I see this a little differently. I think religion can be the all (as tools for the spirit in all walks of one’s live/cultural worlds)
    but that religion is an approach rather than a set of rules and being an approach it certainly makes room, not only for various ways of knowing and thinking but the possibility for experimentation, mistakes, newness and dare, I add, a sense of life – living spirit, etc.

    For me the biggest problem with recent (as in the last 8 or so years) things like Ruhi, and then can you believe it “Annas Presentation” and now the current fad “Musical firesides” is not just that these are promoted as all or nothing for local community focus but the very format of all of three things is imitation. You rote-learn (memorize) and then present in an attempt at imitation.

    Bizzare, but more so, because the Bahais I’ve encountered, seem unaware (or have forgotten) that before these 3 things, that Bahais were busy doing all sorts of stuff, often with the approach that part of the process of an event was making up or interpreting from, the group’s own experiences or knowledge of doing things.

    I’m surprised in reading Paul Lample’s article that he states when Ruhi was used as an all or nothing approach that this was rare, but in my experience it was the norm. In fact, I once was at what I thought was a Ruhi event where there was open discussion, only to be told at the end, by a very friendly and open host, that no, this was not Ruhi and that they decided to drop the Ruhi for me because I hadn’t done the previous books! It didn’t matter, the evening was great.
    But a system based on ‘doing’ (whatever that is, the doing is not about understanding) the ‘right’ levels, in the ‘right’ rigid order that values the materiality of having been present, over whatever knowledge, understanding, interpretation or imagination an individual might have, is similiar to the rigidity you might need when learning to drive car (Lample’s example) where there are traffic rules and safety issues, but hardly for something like a religion, or spirituality. Hardly for something intended to embrace diversity. And even then with something as supposedly universal as driving a car, each country has it’s own rules and systems – related to the environment and culture of the country.

    So… a few weeks ago when an excited youth said to me, “We are having musical firesides”. My response: “Wow, a musical fireside, what an original idea” – “I’ve never heard of such a radical thing” – then I explained that I was being extremely sarcastic. Then… he explained that this was not just some Bahais getting together creating a format with the use of music.
    No, like the Ruhi system, there was a system of set songs, in a particular order to be learnt, as they were “Bahai” songs and they were having lessons on how to do this so then they could present them.
    That to him was what a musical fireside was! I was in fits of laughter by now. It does seem that one the issues related to a system of imitation is an ignorance (or erasing) of what has gone on before and what goes on beyond the blinkers.

  • http://www.sonjavank.blogspot.com sonja

    Just a question, has there been any information given about why the 41 conferences are to be organized, other than for their own sake or to keep people busy?

    re: Brendan’s comment: “One of the most attractive things about the Baha’i Faith, at least as I understood it, is that religion shouldn’t be the be all and end all, but should make room for science, art, philosophy, and various other ways of knowing and thinking.”

    I see this a little differently. I think religion can be the all (as tools for the spirit in all walks of one’s live/cultural worlds)
    but that religion is an approach rather than a set of rules and being an approach it certainly makes room, not only for various ways of knowing and thinking but the possibility for experimentation, mistakes, newness and dare, I add, a sense of life – living spirit, etc.

    For me the biggest problem with recent (as in the last 8 or so years) things like Ruhi, and then can you believe it “Annas Presentation” and now the current fad “Musical firesides” is not just that these are promoted as all or nothing for local community focus but the very format of all of three things is imitation. You rote-learn (memorize) and then present in an attempt at imitation.

    Bizzare, but more so, because the Bahais I’ve encountered, seem unaware (or have forgotten) that before these 3 things, that Bahais were busy doing all sorts of stuff, often with the approach that part of the process of an event was making up or interpreting from, the group’s own experiences or knowledge of doing things.

    I’m surprised in reading Paul Lample’s article that he states when Ruhi was used as an all or nothing approach that this was rare, but in my experience it was the norm. In fact, I once was at what I thought was a Ruhi event where there was open discussion, only to be told at the end, by a very friendly and open host, that no, this was not Ruhi and that they decided to drop the Ruhi for me because I hadn’t done the previous books! It didn’t matter, the evening was great.
    But a system based on ‘doing’ (whatever that is, the doing is not about understanding) the ‘right’ levels, in the ‘right’ rigid order that values the materiality of having been present, over whatever knowledge, understanding, interpretation or imagination an individual might have, is similiar to the rigidity you might need when learning to drive car (Lample’s example) where there are traffic rules and safety issues, but hardly for something like a religion, or spirituality. Hardly for something intended to embrace diversity. And even then with something as supposedly universal as driving a car, each country has it’s own rules and systems – related to the environment and culture of the country.

    So… a few weeks ago when an excited youth said to me, “We are having musical firesides”. My response: “Wow, a musical fireside, what an original idea” – “I’ve never heard of such a radical thing” – then I explained that I was being extremely sarcastic. Then… he explained that this was not just some Bahais getting together creating a format with the use of music.
    No, like the Ruhi system, there was a system of set songs, in a particular order to be learnt, as they were “Bahai” songs and they were having lessons on how to do this so then they could present them.
    That to him was what a musical fireside was! I was in fits of laughter by now. It does seem that one the issues related to a system of imitation is an ignorance (or erasing) of what has gone on before and what goes on beyond the blinkers.

  • Grover

    I wonder if these conferences are a “stay the course, reconsecrate yourself and gird up the loins of endeavour” with the counsellors talking knowledgeably about having “a heightened spiritual consciousness” and “the woes of society”. The letter we got from our NSA was saying its to share and celebrate successes the countries have achieved during the five year plans. But what successes are there to be had other than saying 50% of the Baha’i community has done a Ruhi course? Enrolments in Auz, NZ and America are at all time lows, and I imagine its the same elsewhere.

    If we could get some angry Baha’i rock musicians who are remotely talented maybe there’d be some traction amongst the masses.

  • Grover

    I wonder if these conferences are a “stay the course, reconsecrate yourself and gird up the loins of endeavour” with the counsellors talking knowledgeably about having “a heightened spiritual consciousness” and “the woes of society”. The letter we got from our NSA was saying its to share and celebrate successes the countries have achieved during the five year plans. But what successes are there to be had other than saying 50% of the Baha’i community has done a Ruhi course? Enrolments in Auz, NZ and America are at all time lows, and I imagine its the same elsewhere.

    If we could get some angry Baha’i rock musicians who are remotely talented maybe there’d be some traction amongst the masses.

  • farhan

    Sonja wrote:
    “I’m surprised in reading Paul Lample’s article that he states when Ruhi was used as an all or nothing approach that this was rare, but in my experience it was the norm.”

    Sonja, would it be possible to have access to Paul Lampe’s article please ?

    Having been away from France 5 years, we noticed that in the summer school, the institute process had somewhat reduced the level of talks, but we were surprised to see that active participation had greatly increased. We had more people on the scene than in the audience!

    My interpretation was that the institute process was drawing the more shy and withdrawn members into action. It is like inviting music fans from the audience on to the scene getting them how to play an instrument themselves.

    Obviously, there again a further difference between learning how to improvise on an instrument, and learning how to read and write music.

    Zealots, would want to prevent everyone from having fun on their instrument altogether outside music classes.

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Sonja wrote:
    “I’m surprised in reading Paul Lample’s article that he states when Ruhi was used as an all or nothing approach that this was rare, but in my experience it was the norm.”

    Sonja, would it be possible to have access to Paul Lampe’s article please ?

    Having been away from France 5 years, we noticed that in the summer school, the institute process had somewhat reduced the level of talks, but we were surprised to see that active participation had greatly increased. We had more people on the scene than in the audience!

    My interpretation was that the institute process was drawing the more shy and withdrawn members into action. It is like inviting music fans from the audience on to the scene getting them how to play an instrument themselves.

    Obviously, there again a further difference between learning how to improvise on an instrument, and learning how to read and write music.

    Zealots, would want to prevent everyone from having fun on their instrument altogether outside music classes.

  • http://www.senmcglinn.wordpress.com Sonja

    Paul Lample’s article is here:

    http://www.bahai-studies.ca/archives/ABS2008PaulLample.pdf

    It is 25 pages

    Farhan, if Ruhi or anything else “is like inviting music fans from the audience on to the scene getting them how to play an instrument themselves.”, then, of course, that is great.

    It has not been my experience and do travel a lot and know a lot of Bahais, so my experiences are not based just on my own personal experiences of Ruhi.

    However before Ruhi came along, I never had the idea that deepenings and other types of studie activities inhibited individuals participating. In fact Bahai experiences in a number of countries in the eighties and nineties, were enriching ones of events where from this idea that we could be creative – in some cases, had to be (and I’m not just referring to using the arts or unusual approaches, just that sometimes we had to improvise to get something done with limited means – so in short before Ruhi, my Bahai community experiences were dominated by ‘improvisation’).

    Just to give one example Farhan: in the days before Ruhi, I used to teach a children’s class for teenagers (admittedly I was already a high school teacher so not having a set syllabus was not an issue for me).
    In our venue there was access to the local Bahai library, and I planned it that our classes consisted of a bunch of questions the youth had: all these questions were written out into a list. There were no restrictions here, the youth just asked what they had a problem with or what they wanted to know about, etc. Then each class consisted of them all tackling the same question, finding the answer or answers themselves from the books in the library and I helped them to find these, discuss what the text could mean, and guided the discussion in general. My approach as a teacher here was to help them to learn how to form a question, how to do research (I am a believer in this!) and how to share your interpretation of this with others and to learn how to consult or debate. A by-product might be the learning of some facts, but it was not the focus. That’s just how I chose to do this and I did this for selfish reasons. I prefer this way of teaching and it gave me a chance to learn a lot myself, and I could see that the teenagers enjoyed it because of the lively debate.

    Today I could never qualify as a teacher for Bahai classes because I’d have to sleep through 4 or 5 sets of Ruhi classes first or follow some Ruhi-type ‘teacher’ memorization module.

    So going back to your metaphor, with this one example, here’s someone who used to be a player of an instrument in a Bahai community context and now couldn’t be anymore because I play a different style of music. This wouldn’t be such a big deal if more than one style of music was seen as valid as part of Bahai community activity. It wouldn’t be a big deal if to use your metaphor the reading and writing of music was based on something more than form.
    Ruhi is based on form, because qualification rests on sitting through a set number of ‘books’, not on things like actually memorizing set texts or understanding or knowledge.

    To get to book 2 you have to sleep through book 1, right?
    A friend in Bosnia called Ruhi, judo, because you need to get ‘belts’ to move up, however unlike judo, you don’t have to gain any particular skill. There’s no actual test, except that of endurance. Correct me Farhan, if I’ve misrepresented how one moves from book 1 to book 2 and so on. It could be that some tutors insist on participants passing a test, but I’ve never heard this.

    You mention that your experience is that Ruhi has helped shy people become more involved. One story: a friend who is shy and likes Ruhi, believes that without following it she can’t teach the Bahai Faith, but… she is so shy about this, she thinks she can’t teach unless she follows Anna’s presentation to the letter. In practising on me a few months ago, I saw her nervousness, so I asked her why she became a Bahai and took the sheet with the list away from her. She started talking in her own words and relaxed. This women has been a Bahai for 20 years or more and although shy, now thinks she doesn’t know the writings very well, whereas before Ruhi, I don’t think it was a topic that came up in deepenings, etc.

    Farhan, I’m not against Ruhi as a system, and certainly any study circle is a wonderful thing, if it is for study or learning. I am only against it being used as a term of qualification. Look in any Bahai news item calling for pioneers. Most ask that applicants have already completed book 4 or so or that you being a tutor of book 4 or so. In 2004 in offering a talk on the arts in South Korea I was asked to follow book 7. A talk on the arts? Now you might ask, why does this need to follow a set formula?
    I nearly didn’t do the talk, until I met the secretary a few weeks beforehand, who was doing the asking. It turned out that he just thought this was the way you had to do talks, not that he found my talk, which was based on the Bahai writings and the arts, wrong. (It is online) It was a lively talk and went down well. Many in the audience themselves, asked questions that indicated that they were interested in or involved in the arts. For example i was asked how would I treat works by the American photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. So I was so glad that in this case, it was possible to meet the secretary beforehand and realise that my non-Ruhi talk would be ok, and that I didn’t take the 2 statements that I had to relate my talk to book 7 seriously.

    Later I read book 7 (I know, people have told me that the experience of reading book 7 is not the same as the experience of a real book 7 Ruhi class :)) and found nothing in it about the arts!
    It was about teaching and examples used for this were to use the arts. Quite a different thing and not what Baha’u’llah wrote!
    See my article on this which one day I’ll finish.

    Ruhi is being used as a measure of qualification and what makes me smile, is what is the ‘qualification’ here other than form, or other than going along with the system of imitation.

  • http://www.senmcglinn.wordpress.com Sonja

    Paul Lample’s article is here:

    http://www.bahai-studies.ca/archives/ABS2008PaulLample.pdf

    It is 25 pages

    Farhan, if Ruhi or anything else “is like inviting music fans from the audience on to the scene getting them how to play an instrument themselves.”, then, of course, that is great.

    It has not been my experience and do travel a lot and know a lot of Bahais, so my experiences are not based just on my own personal experiences of Ruhi.

    However before Ruhi came along, I never had the idea that deepenings and other types of studie activities inhibited individuals participating. In fact Bahai experiences in a number of countries in the eighties and nineties, were enriching ones of events where from this idea that we could be creative – in some cases, had to be (and I’m not just referring to using the arts or unusual approaches, just that sometimes we had to improvise to get something done with limited means – so in short before Ruhi, my Bahai community experiences were dominated by ‘improvisation’).

    Just to give one example Farhan: in the days before Ruhi, I used to teach a children’s class for teenagers (admittedly I was already a high school teacher so not having a set syllabus was not an issue for me).
    In our venue there was access to the local Bahai library, and I planned it that our classes consisted of a bunch of questions the youth had: all these questions were written out into a list. There were no restrictions here, the youth just asked what they had a problem with or what they wanted to know about, etc. Then each class consisted of them all tackling the same question, finding the answer or answers themselves from the books in the library and I helped them to find these, discuss what the text could mean, and guided the discussion in general. My approach as a teacher here was to help them to learn how to form a question, how to do research (I am a believer in this!) and how to share your interpretation of this with others and to learn how to consult or debate. A by-product might be the learning of some facts, but it was not the focus. That’s just how I chose to do this and I did this for selfish reasons. I prefer this way of teaching and it gave me a chance to learn a lot myself, and I could see that the teenagers enjoyed it because of the lively debate.

    Today I could never qualify as a teacher for Bahai classes because I’d have to sleep through 4 or 5 sets of Ruhi classes first or follow some Ruhi-type ‘teacher’ memorization module.

    So going back to your metaphor, with this one example, here’s someone who used to be a player of an instrument in a Bahai community context and now couldn’t be anymore because I play a different style of music. This wouldn’t be such a big deal if more than one style of music was seen as valid as part of Bahai community activity. It wouldn’t be a big deal if to use your metaphor the reading and writing of music was based on something more than form.
    Ruhi is based on form, because qualification rests on sitting through a set number of ‘books’, not on things like actually memorizing set texts or understanding or knowledge.

    To get to book 2 you have to sleep through book 1, right?
    A friend in Bosnia called Ruhi, judo, because you need to get ‘belts’ to move up, however unlike judo, you don’t have to gain any particular skill. There’s no actual test, except that of endurance. Correct me Farhan, if I’ve misrepresented how one moves from book 1 to book 2 and so on. It could be that some tutors insist on participants passing a test, but I’ve never heard this.

    You mention that your experience is that Ruhi has helped shy people become more involved. One story: a friend who is shy and likes Ruhi, believes that without following it she can’t teach the Bahai Faith, but… she is so shy about this, she thinks she can’t teach unless she follows Anna’s presentation to the letter. In practising on me a few months ago, I saw her nervousness, so I asked her why she became a Bahai and took the sheet with the list away from her. She started talking in her own words and relaxed. This women has been a Bahai for 20 years or more and although shy, now thinks she doesn’t know the writings very well, whereas before Ruhi, I don’t think it was a topic that came up in deepenings, etc.

    Farhan, I’m not against Ruhi as a system, and certainly any study circle is a wonderful thing, if it is for study or learning. I am only against it being used as a term of qualification. Look in any Bahai news item calling for pioneers. Most ask that applicants have already completed book 4 or so or that you being a tutor of book 4 or so. In 2004 in offering a talk on the arts in South Korea I was asked to follow book 7. A talk on the arts? Now you might ask, why does this need to follow a set formula?
    I nearly didn’t do the talk, until I met the secretary a few weeks beforehand, who was doing the asking. It turned out that he just thought this was the way you had to do talks, not that he found my talk, which was based on the Bahai writings and the arts, wrong. (It is online) It was a lively talk and went down well. Many in the audience themselves, asked questions that indicated that they were interested in or involved in the arts. For example i was asked how would I treat works by the American photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. So I was so glad that in this case, it was possible to meet the secretary beforehand and realise that my non-Ruhi talk would be ok, and that I didn’t take the 2 statements that I had to relate my talk to book 7 seriously.

    Later I read book 7 (I know, people have told me that the experience of reading book 7 is not the same as the experience of a real book 7 Ruhi class :)) and found nothing in it about the arts!
    It was about teaching and examples used for this were to use the arts. Quite a different thing and not what Baha’u’llah wrote!
    See my article on this which one day I’ll finish.

    Ruhi is being used as a measure of qualification and what makes me smile, is what is the ‘qualification’ here other than form, or other than going along with the system of imitation.

  • Mike Hawk

    So, are all you retards bahais? you sure show a bad side of yourself. Grow up people, what is wrong with you?, seriously, what is this retarded discussion? Or maybe go be politicians, it would serve you just as good.

  • Mike Hawk

    So, are all you retards bahais? you sure show a bad side of yourself. Grow up people, what is wrong with you?, seriously, what is this retarded discussion? Or maybe go be politicians, it would serve you just as good.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]So, are all you retards bahais? you sure show a bad side of yourself. Grow up people, what is wrong with you?, seriously, what is this retarded discussion? Or maybe go be politicians, it would serve you just as good.[/quote]

    Mike,

    Thank you for your service in Iraq and Afghanistan. You did serve didn’t you?

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment=""]So, are all you retards bahais? you sure show a bad side of yourself. Grow up people, what is wrong with you?, seriously, what is this retarded discussion? Or maybe go be politicians, it would serve you just as good.[/quote]

    Mike,

    Thank you for your service in Iraq and Afghanistan. You did serve didn’t you?

  • Grover

    Mike, let me guess, you love Ruhi. Its okay, we understand.

  • Grover

    Mike, let me guess, you love Ruhi. Its okay, we understand.

  • Ryan Jenkins

    [quote comment=""]Mike, let me guess, you love Ruhi. Its okay, we understand.[/quote]
    Can someone tell me the beef many of you have with Ruhi? (concise please I’m not going to read a book)

  • Ryan Jenkins

    [quote comment=""]Mike, let me guess, you love Ruhi. Its okay, we understand.[/quote]
    Can someone tell me the beef many of you have with Ruhi? (concise please I’m not going to read a book)

  • Bonzo

    “So, are all you retards bahais?”

    Ah, the unity, relevance and earth-saving power of the Baha’i Faith: from “have fun, retards!” to “are all you retards bahais?”!

    The evident quality of the millions upon millions of individuals who continue to be drawn to the Faith continues to astound (but does not surprise) me.

    Is there a Baha’i song or Ruhi session that stresses the importance of referring to non-Baha’is as “retards”? Perhaps I’ll write one myself; something along the lines of …

    “Bring a bunch of retards
    To unity through fear;
    We welcome all retardates
    Unless they’re f***ing queer.”

    Ah, the high spiritual caliber and pure pure pure aspirations are truly inspiring. Entry by troops is inevitable as everyone (except the retards) embraces the BS! … er, I mean the BF!

  • Bonzo

    “So, are all you retards bahais?”

    Ah, the unity, relevance and earth-saving power of the Baha’i Faith: from “have fun, retards!” to “are all you retards bahais?”!

    The evident quality of the millions upon millions of individuals who continue to be drawn to the Faith continues to astound (but does not surprise) me.

    Is there a Baha’i song or Ruhi session that stresses the importance of referring to non-Baha’is as “retards”? Perhaps I’ll write one myself; something along the lines of …

    “Bring a bunch of retards
    To unity through fear;
    We welcome all retardates
    Unless they’re f***ing queer.”

    Ah, the high spiritual caliber and pure pure pure aspirations are truly inspiring. Entry by troops is inevitable as everyone (except the retards) embraces the BS! … er, I mean the BF!

  • Ryan Jenkins

    I’m really starting to wonder what the purpose of this blog is. Religion is a voluntary thing and an exercise in absolutes. Criticizing certain laws as an non-member holds no weight except to the one criticizing.

  • Ryan Jenkins

    I’m really starting to wonder what the purpose of this blog is. Religion is a voluntary thing and an exercise in absolutes. Criticizing certain laws as an non-member holds no weight except to the one criticizing.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    [quote comment=""]Can someone tell me the beef many of you have with Ruhi? (concise please I’m not going to read a book)[/quote]

    Ryan, there is a whole Ruhi category but you want the concise version, right? here is my take: Ruhi Redux and an essay by Anthony Lee: The Ruhi Problem.

    And if you’re still wondering about the animating spirit of this blog, it is spelled out in the introduction.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    [quote comment=""]Can someone tell me the beef many of you have with Ruhi? (concise please I’m not going to read a book)[/quote]

    Ryan, there is a whole Ruhi category but you want the concise version, right? here is my take: Ruhi Redux and an essay by Anthony Lee: The Ruhi Problem.

    And if you’re still wondering about the animating spirit of this blog, it is spelled out in the introduction.

  • farhan

    Sonja wrote :
    I used to teach a children’s class for teenagers (admittedly I was already a high school teacher so not having a set syllabus was not an issue for me).

    Farhan: Sonja, I am not a Ruhi fan but a great admirer and supporter of the concept and a regular participant. I perfectly get your point: Ruhi is specifically designed for those who do not have a syllabus and unlike you feel disabled to improvise. What humanity needs at this time are human resources. I have witnessed mass entry and mass exit by people whose hopes have been shattered by entering a community unable to cater for their needs, because of the immaturity and inexperience of existing members. We need to empower new human resources, not disable existing ones.

    Sonja : My approach as a teacher here was to help them to learn how to form a question, how to do research (I am a believer in this!) and how to share your interpretation of this with others and to learn how to consult or debate.

    Farhan : This activity is to be developed within the regular reflection meetings. However, many community members are not invited/attending the meetings, and those wanting to put questions are told to shut up because some inexperienced tutors are not yet able to cope with those question. The study circles themselves are not a meeting devoted to questioning, but to learning. We invite questions during study circles, but note them in a book we call the ?Frigidaire? for discussion later on; if the study circles become discussion/deepening sessions, that should continue elsewhere, participants will never end a book and will fall out.

    Sonja: That’s just how I chose to do this and I did this for selfish reasons. I prefer this way of teaching and it gave me a chance to learn a l!

    Farhan: and you should continue to offer your talents and the community should learn you help you develop it.

    Sonja: Today I could never qualify as a teacher for Bahai classes because I’d have to sleep through 4 or 5 sets of Ruhi classes first or follow some Ruhi-type ‘teacher’ memorization module.

    Farhan: You are describing a common misconception of zealots, in contradiction with the specific requests of the UHJ. There is an emergency for developing a standard basic and easily transmitted curriculum that will empower inactive people for acts of service. Book 1 helps you organize devotionals, book 2 how to visit those who need attention, book 3 how to organize children’s classes, etc. The Ruhi curriculum is not intended for disabling those who were already engaged in service; although participating in establishing this curriculum is the priority, there is no exclusivity.

    Sonja: Ruhi is based on form, because qualification rests on sitting through a set number of ‘books’, not on things like actually memorizing set texts or understanding or knowledge.

    Farhan: True, but again action through trial and error is an essential part of learning; in order to go faster, some people decided to ignore the action part altogether.

    Sonja: To get to book 2 you have to sleep through book 1, right?

    Farhan: no, wrong. This is again a common misconception. There is a preference for a sequence, which is in no way obligatory, no more than there is an obligation to have done Ruhi in order to serve the Faith, even though at this time there is an emergency to established a standard curriculum.

    Sonja: A friend in Bosnia called Ruhi, judo, because you need to get ‘belts’ to move up, however unlike judo, you don’t have to gain any particular skill.

    Farhan: another misconception introduced by our well meaning zealots.

    Sonja: she is so shy about this, she thinks she can’t teach unless she follows Anna’s presentation to the letter.

    Farhan: I agree with you here. However, 30 years ago I had my own presentation, and painfully adapted it by trial and error and soon I avoided starting my presentation with Sheikh Ahmad and Siyyid Kazem ;-) Having tried Anna’s presentation, I am more and more adumbrative at how in a short presentation; the most important outlines of Baha’i life have been introduced. It most certainly deserves being studied and imitated, but also adapted to specific circumstances.

    Sonja: I am only against it being used as a term of qualification. Look in any Baha’i news item calling for pioneers.

    Farhan: I heartily agree with you, and so does the BWC, as you will read in the quotes clarifying the Institute Process that Baquia placed somewhere on this site and in the quote below. I painfully went through that problem as a pioneer, but again, in the place I went, twice the community had 200 declarations but was unable to sustain. It became evident to me that there was no point in teaching before you have human resources to cater for them, and human resources either come from elsewhere or are developed amongst the local people. Ruhi is a perfect tool for that, and these people make mistakes when they start entering into the field of service. Should we throw them away or help and encourage them? Quote from Building Momentum (but who has studied it before doing Ruhi???)

    ?At the same time the House of Justice has explained that no special designation should be accorded to those who are studying in the institute or serving as tutors, nor should the friends feel any demarcation based on participation in the institute:
    It is quite reasonable to expect that, as far as training by the institute is concerned, certain courses would have as their prerequisite the completion of other courses. However, this notion should not be carried over into other Baha’i activities, and clearly no distinction should be made between “trained” and “untrained” believers in the country. That for certain types of service the qualifications of the believers would need to be taken into account is natural. Yet the way should be open for all the friends, irrespective of the degree of their knowledge and experience, to participate in the affairs of the Faith….? (Letter dated 4 October 2000 written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to the Spiritual Assembly of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. In Building Momentum p4)

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Sonja wrote :
    I used to teach a children’s class for teenagers (admittedly I was already a high school teacher so not having a set syllabus was not an issue for me).

    Farhan: Sonja, I am not a Ruhi fan but a great admirer and supporter of the concept and a regular participant. I perfectly get your point: Ruhi is specifically designed for those who do not have a syllabus and unlike you feel disabled to improvise. What humanity needs at this time are human resources. I have witnessed mass entry and mass exit by people whose hopes have been shattered by entering a community unable to cater for their needs, because of the immaturity and inexperience of existing members. We need to empower new human resources, not disable existing ones.

    Sonja : My approach as a teacher here was to help them to learn how to form a question, how to do research (I am a believer in this!) and how to share your interpretation of this with others and to learn how to consult or debate.

    Farhan : This activity is to be developed within the regular reflection meetings. However, many community members are not invited/attending the meetings, and those wanting to put questions are told to shut up because some inexperienced tutors are not yet able to cope with those question. The study circles themselves are not a meeting devoted to questioning, but to learning. We invite questions during study circles, but note them in a book we call the ?Frigidaire? for discussion later on; if the study circles become discussion/deepening sessions, that should continue elsewhere, participants will never end a book and will fall out.

    Sonja: That’s just how I chose to do this and I did this for selfish reasons. I prefer this way of teaching and it gave me a chance to learn a l!

    Farhan: and you should continue to offer your talents and the community should learn you help you develop it.

    Sonja: Today I could never qualify as a teacher for Bahai classes because I’d have to sleep through 4 or 5 sets of Ruhi classes first or follow some Ruhi-type ‘teacher’ memorization module.

    Farhan: You are describing a common misconception of zealots, in contradiction with the specific requests of the UHJ. There is an emergency for developing a standard basic and easily transmitted curriculum that will empower inactive people for acts of service. Book 1 helps you organize devotionals, book 2 how to visit those who need attention, book 3 how to organize children’s classes, etc. The Ruhi curriculum is not intended for disabling those who were already engaged in service; although participating in establishing this curriculum is the priority, there is no exclusivity.

    Sonja: Ruhi is based on form, because qualification rests on sitting through a set number of ‘books’, not on things like actually memorizing set texts or understanding or knowledge.

    Farhan: True, but again action through trial and error is an essential part of learning; in order to go faster, some people decided to ignore the action part altogether.

    Sonja: To get to book 2 you have to sleep through book 1, right?

    Farhan: no, wrong. This is again a common misconception. There is a preference for a sequence, which is in no way obligatory, no more than there is an obligation to have done Ruhi in order to serve the Faith, even though at this time there is an emergency to established a standard curriculum.

    Sonja: A friend in Bosnia called Ruhi, judo, because you need to get ‘belts’ to move up, however unlike judo, you don’t have to gain any particular skill.

    Farhan: another misconception introduced by our well meaning zealots.

    Sonja: she is so shy about this, she thinks she can’t teach unless she follows Anna’s presentation to the letter.

    Farhan: I agree with you here. However, 30 years ago I had my own presentation, and painfully adapted it by trial and error and soon I avoided starting my presentation with Sheikh Ahmad and Siyyid Kazem ;-) Having tried Anna’s presentation, I am more and more adumbrative at how in a short presentation; the most important outlines of Baha’i life have been introduced. It most certainly deserves being studied and imitated, but also adapted to specific circumstances.

    Sonja: I am only against it being used as a term of qualification. Look in any Baha’i news item calling for pioneers.

    Farhan: I heartily agree with you, and so does the BWC, as you will read in the quotes clarifying the Institute Process that Baquia placed somewhere on this site and in the quote below. I painfully went through that problem as a pioneer, but again, in the place I went, twice the community had 200 declarations but was unable to sustain. It became evident to me that there was no point in teaching before you have human resources to cater for them, and human resources either come from elsewhere or are developed amongst the local people. Ruhi is a perfect tool for that, and these people make mistakes when they start entering into the field of service. Should we throw them away or help and encourage them? Quote from Building Momentum (but who has studied it before doing Ruhi???)

    ?At the same time the House of Justice has explained that no special designation should be accorded to those who are studying in the institute or serving as tutors, nor should the friends feel any demarcation based on participation in the institute:
    It is quite reasonable to expect that, as far as training by the institute is concerned, certain courses would have as their prerequisite the completion of other courses. However, this notion should not be carried over into other Baha’i activities, and clearly no distinction should be made between “trained” and “untrained” believers in the country. That for certain types of service the qualifications of the believers would need to be taken into account is natural. Yet the way should be open for all the friends, irrespective of the degree of their knowledge and experience, to participate in the affairs of the Faith….? (Letter dated 4 October 2000 written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to the Spiritual Assembly of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. In Building Momentum p4)

  • farhan

    Ryan wrote:
    “Can someone tell me the beef many of you have with Ruhi?”

    Ryan, in short, how I understand the problem is that Ruhi has brought inactive people into the field of action, and hence brought into the open several latent trends in human society which of course also exist within the Baha’i community. This revealing of latent problems is an essential part of learning.

    First of all, up to now, knowledge has been a means of self fulfilment, social advancement and domination of others. This is why slaves were to be deprived from literacy. With Ruhi, we are telling every one “yes you can, and I am here to help you do it, and to help you help others to do it”. Knowledgeable people are losing power and they might resent this. I understand this as the ?Great Reversal?. In some ways, it reminds me of the (temporary) Chinese bare-foot doctors experience.

    Secondly, unaware that the Ruhi books were primarily designed to help us all, whatever our intellectual achievements, become better teachers, to better serve the needy, and to help the needy then help themselves. They were not designed to teach intellectuals what they already knew. Many experienced Baha’is disdained these activities, leaving the process in the hands of inexperienced newcomers.

    Thirdly, some of the new comers in the field of service, adopted arrogant attitudes and became inebriated by their newly attained status, imagining the 7 books as a short cut through the 7 Valleys. They started to consider themselves as the ?faithful? Baha’is, looking down on others as ?disobedient veterans?. This resulted in power issues that are now dying out as every one is realising that the whole purpose of Ruhi is to make us service oriented and not new leaders.

    Fourthly, the urgent need for human resources in the current world situation, with millions thirsting for spirituality and ready to enter a community unable to cater for them, has made us establish _temporary_, non-exclusive priorities, for a ?fast food? mass teaching project up to 2021. These urgent activities have been competing with the more sophisticated long term plans for intellectual activities. In some cases, the elected pillar of Baha’i administration has been left behind, sometimes leading to uncontrolled individual initiatives. This is a learning procedure and we have to be patient to let these people learn.

    Fifthly, these now apparent dysfunctions discourage many intellectuals. As I imagine things, we have moved from a well behaved audience listening to a few outstanding artists, to some outstanding artist trying to get each and every member of the whole audience play a musical instrument. For the moment, the result is very noisy, but in time it will be harmoniously organised into an orchestra.

  • Farhan Yazdani

    Ryan wrote:
    “Can someone tell me the beef many of you have with Ruhi?”

    Ryan, in short, how I understand the problem is that Ruhi has brought inactive people into the field of action, and hence brought into the open several latent trends in human society which of course also exist within the Baha’i community. This revealing of latent problems is an essential part of learning.

    First of all, up to now, knowledge has been a means of self fulfilment, social advancement and domination of others. This is why slaves were to be deprived from literacy. With Ruhi, we are telling every one “yes you can, and I am here to help you do it, and to help you help others to do it”. Knowledgeable people are losing power and they might resent this. I understand this as the ?Great Reversal?. In some ways, it reminds me of the (temporary) Chinese bare-foot doctors experience.

    Secondly, unaware that the Ruhi books were primarily designed to help us all, whatever our intellectual achievements, become better teachers, to better serve the needy, and to help the needy then help themselves. They were not designed to teach intellectuals what they already knew. Many experienced Baha’is disdained these activities, leaving the process in the hands of inexperienced newcomers.

    Thirdly, some of the new comers in the field of service, adopted arrogant attitudes and became inebriated by their newly attained status, imagining the 7 books as a short cut through the 7 Valleys. They started to consider themselves as the ?faithful? Baha’is, looking down on others as ?disobedient veterans?. This resulted in power issues that are now dying out as every one is realising that the whole purpose of Ruhi is to make us service oriented and not new leaders.

    Fourthly, the urgent need for human resources in the current world situation, with millions thirsting for spirituality and ready to enter a community unable to cater for them, has made us establish _temporary_, non-exclusive priorities, for a ?fast food? mass teaching project up to 2021. These urgent activities have been competing with the more sophisticated long term plans for intellectual activities. In some cases, the elected pillar of Baha’i administration has been left behind, sometimes leading to uncontrolled individual initiatives. This is a learning procedure and we have to be patient to let these people learn.

    Fifthly, these now apparent dysfunctions discourage many intellectuals. As I imagine things, we have moved from a well behaved audience listening to a few outstanding artists, to some outstanding artist trying to get each and every member of the whole audience play a musical instrument. For the moment, the result is very noisy, but in time it will be harmoniously organised into an orchestra.

  • Bonzo

    “I’m really starting to wonder what the purpose of this blog is. Religion is a voluntary thing and an exercise in absolutes.”

    LOL! You must inhabit a really tiny religious universe!

    “Religious perspectives that argue for absolute truth can breed intolerance, and so absolutist religion must be opposed and the prestige of religion used to teach tolerance — that all people are God’s children. The patterns of majority culture dominance must give way to multiculturalism, and citizens must accept a tolerant spirit toward three prominent causes: feminism, racial equality, and gay rights.” (“To Know and Love God” by David K. Clark)

  • Bonzo

    “I’m really starting to wonder what the purpose of this blog is. Religion is a voluntary thing and an exercise in absolutes.”

    LOL! You must inhabit a really tiny religious universe!

    “Religious perspectives that argue for absolute truth can breed intolerance, and so absolutist religion must be opposed and the prestige of religion used to teach tolerance — that all people are God’s children. The patterns of majority culture dominance must give way to multiculturalism, and citizens must accept a tolerant spirit toward three prominent causes: feminism, racial equality, and gay rights.” (“To Know and Love God” by David K. Clark)

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    Baquia wrote:
    [quote]Each of the regional conferences will have 2 ITC counsellors as representatives of the UHJ. And Baha’is wonder why there is a revolving door between the two administrative bodies![/quote]

    I’d like to quote something from Shoghi Effendi:

    [quote]Nor can the Baha’i Administrative Order be dismissed as a hard and rigid system of unmitigated autocracy or as an idle imitation of any form of absolutistic ecclesiastical government, whether it be the Papacy, the Imamate or any other similar institution, for the obvious reason that upon the international elected representatives of the followers of Baha’u’llah has been conferred the exclusive right of legislating on matters not expressly revealed in the Baha’i writings. Neither the Guardian of the Faith nor any institution apart from the International House of Justice can ever usurp this vital and essential power or encroach upon that sacred right. The abolition of professional priesthood with its accompanying sacraments of baptism, of communion and of confession of sins, the laws requiring the election by universal suffrage of all local, national, and international Houses of Justice, the total absence of episcopal authority with its attendant privileges, corruptions and bureaucratic tendencies, are further evidences of the non-autocratic character of the Baha’i Administrative Order and of its inclination to democratic methods in the administration of its affairs.
    (Shoghi Effendi: World Order of Baha’u’llah, Pages: 153-154)[/quote]

    What I’d like to comment on, in relation to the 41 international conferences, is the part where Shoghi Effendi says that “the total absence of episcopal authority with its attendant privileges, corruptions and bureaucratic tendencies” is one of several “evidences of the non-autocratic character of the Baha’i Administrative Order and of its inclination to democratic methods in the administration of its affairs”.

    My question is whether having ITC members (a professional priesthood?) attending these many conferences as representatives of the UHJ doesn’t start to turn them into “episcopal authorities” (bishops/ayatollahs, in other words) and thus lead to the privilege, corruption and bureaucracy that Shoghi Effendi warned against.

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    Baquia wrote:
    [quote]Each of the regional conferences will have 2 ITC counsellors as representatives of the UHJ. And Baha’is wonder why there is a revolving door between the two administrative bodies![/quote]

    I’d like to quote something from Shoghi Effendi:

    [quote]Nor can the Baha’i Administrative Order be dismissed as a hard and rigid system of unmitigated autocracy or as an idle imitation of any form of absolutistic ecclesiastical government, whether it be the Papacy, the Imamate or any other similar institution, for the obvious reason that upon the international elected representatives of the followers of Baha’u’llah has been conferred the exclusive right of legislating on matters not expressly revealed in the Baha’i writings. Neither the Guardian of the Faith nor any institution apart from the International House of Justice can ever usurp this vital and essential power or encroach upon that sacred right. The abolition of professional priesthood with its accompanying sacraments of baptism, of communion and of confession of sins, the laws requiring the election by universal suffrage of all local, national, and international Houses of Justice, the total absence of episcopal authority with its attendant privileges, corruptions and bureaucratic tendencies, are further evidences of the non-autocratic character of the Baha’i Administrative Order and of its inclination to democratic methods in the administration of its affairs.
    (Shoghi Effendi: World Order of Baha’u’llah, Pages: 153-154)[/quote]

    What I’d like to comment on, in relation to the 41 international conferences, is the part where Shoghi Effendi says that “the total absence of episcopal authority with its attendant privileges, corruptions and bureaucratic tendencies” is one of several “evidences of the non-autocratic character of the Baha’i Administrative Order and of its inclination to democratic methods in the administration of its affairs”.

    My question is whether having ITC members (a professional priesthood?) attending these many conferences as representatives of the UHJ doesn’t start to turn them into “episcopal authorities” (bishops/ayatollahs, in other words) and thus lead to the privilege, corruption and bureaucracy that Shoghi Effendi warned against.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Steve,
    what the Baha’i Faith had before was what Abdu’l-Baha, the architect of the Administrative Order, intended and it was perfect. The Counsellors were appointed by the Guardian and they would be separate, under the appointed arm. What we have now is a comingling and a conflation of the appointed and the elected. This was never the intention of Abdu’l-Baha and for good reason! such a structure can potentially be quite problematic. The Stewards of the Faith showed great leadership and spiritual maturity because they understood this and stepped aside as candidates from the House.
    The members of the ITC so far have not shown the same spiritual insight or else they too would simply remove themselves from consideration as members of the appointed arm.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Steve,
    what the Baha’i Faith had before was what Abdu’l-Baha, the architect of the Administrative Order, intended and it was perfect. The Counsellors were appointed by the Guardian and they would be separate, under the appointed arm. What we have now is a comingling and a conflation of the appointed and the elected. This was never the intention of Abdu’l-Baha and for good reason! such a structure can potentially be quite problematic. The Stewards of the Faith showed great leadership and spiritual maturity because they understood this and stepped aside as candidates from the House.
    The members of the ITC so far have not shown the same spiritual insight or else they too would simply remove themselves from consideration as members of the appointed arm.

  • http://www.sonjavank.blogspot.com sonja

    [quote comment=""]The members of the ITC so far have not shown the same spiritual insight or else they too would simply remove themselves from consideration as members of the elected arm.[/quote]

    To state this more clearly, the Hands of the Cause, at the time of the election of the first Universal House of Justice, collectively decided to make themselves not available for election in accordance with ‘Abdul-Baha’ and Shoghi Effendi’s principle of separating the spheres (Shoghi Effendi’s own term here) of the appointed from the elected.

    And the members of the ITC are not doing this in being both appointed, and then later elected.
    At the most prominent level of visibility the Hands of the Cause understood that it was best for those appointed to remove themselves in order to preserve the separation of the two spheres, and it could provide an opportunity for the learning accumulated in National Assemblies to be directly linked to the Universal House of Justice.

    At the moment the only way local or national administrative experience can feed into the development of the House of Justice is via the counsellors who are appointed, who then bring this to the ITC, who in turn are appointed by the UHJ.

    As Baquia pointed out in The Circle is complete now all current members of the UHJ were previously members of the ITC.

    I posted on the Bahai group on Facebook the following (below), and I wonder if anyone here might have further information or can correct me if I have misunderstood this, as it seems now that councellors are to approve proclamation plans in the U.S.A. and not the NSA. It seems here that the appointed are taking the administrative functions.

    X, I’ve never heard that the Media Campaign organised by NSA of the USA a few years ago had “the problem was that we got too many responses that we could not handle!”

    In the NSA’s own report to their national convention, Ridvan 2007 (I’ve posted excerpts from this below) it was a success and they proposed to continue with this, but then the UHJ wrote a letter afterwards for the delegates which said that:

    [quote comment=""]“19 Apri1 2007

    The National Spiritual Assembly of the Bah??’?s of the United States

    … In this light, what must be recognized is that the most recent
    sharp decline from some 2,000 to 1,000 annual enrollments occurred
    between 1997 and 2003, a period during which an appreciation for the
    provisions of the global Plans had not yet been fully gained in the
    United States and, as a result, emphasis was being given to certain
    kinds of measures ­to proclamation through the media, to initiatives
    designed specifically for and by Local Spiritual Assemblies, to
    inspirational appeals intended to capture the believers’ imagination
    and stir them to action, and to extensive analyses of diverse topics.

    It should be clear, then, that a return to such measures will not
    serve the needs of the American Bah??’? community. This is not to
    suggest that there is no room for proclamation in the plans of
    action, for example, for a cluster in which the institute process is
    sufficiently advanced and in which new souls need to be attracted to
    firesides and core activities. Nor is it to diminish the importance
    of the evolving role Local Assemblies play in the new realities being created at the grassroots. However, what is essential is for such roles and functions to take shape within the framework for action that has been elaborated in the message dated 27 December 2005 to the Conference of the Continental Boards of Counsellors.”[/quote]

    In effect this means that all proclamation plans all have to be approved by the continental board of the Councellors and an effect of this was that the Media Campaign ceased to exist.
    If there had been too many responses or some sort of problem with the declarations, Sean, I would imagine that the NSA’s Ridvan report would have mentioned this and in that case would not have proposed further use of the Media Campaign. Here is an excerpt from their report:

    [quote comment=""]“Ridvan 2007 Annual Message

    National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of the United States

    page 8)

    Another issue is proclamation. While we fully appreciate the need for
    Baha’i communities to avoid placing undue emphasis on proclamation
    activities, we have learned from experience that the proper use of
    media and other forms of proclamation can be invaluable tools for
    generating seekers, whose interest can then be nurtured through the
    core activities or other forms of teaching. Our national media
    initiative practiced the same disciplines of planning, action, and
    reflection that the House of Justice is exhorting Baha’is everywhere
    to acquire.
    Nearly 1,000 souls entered the Faith through experimental television
    broadcasts and Internet proclamations. A recent study showed that one
    out of every six new believers’ first point of contact was the Baha’i public website or the Seeker Response telephone line. The problem we face is that proclamation is widely considered to be inconsistent with the framework for action in the Five Year Plan, making it difficult to engage the friends in serious discussion of the uses of media to generate seekers in advanced clusters.

    Past experiments have taught us that through media, especially the
    Internet, we can learn a great deal about seekers’ hopes and cares
    and, especially, about the location of receptive populations. “[/quote]

  • http://www.sonjavank.blogspot.com sonja

    [quote comment=""]The members of the ITC so far have not shown the same spiritual insight or else they too would simply remove themselves from consideration as members of the elected arm.[/quote]

    To state this more clearly, the Hands of the Cause, at the time of the election of the first Universal House of Justice, collectively decided to make themselves not available for election in accordance with ‘Abdul-Baha’ and Shoghi Effendi’s principle of separating the spheres (Shoghi Effendi’s own term here) of the appointed from the elected.

    And the members of the ITC are not doing this in being both appointed, and then later elected.
    At the most prominent level of visibility the Hands of the Cause understood that it was best for those appointed to remove themselves in order to preserve the separation of the two spheres, and it could provide an opportunity for the learning accumulated in National Assemblies to be directly linked to the Universal House of Justice.

    At the moment the only way local or national administrative experience can feed into the development of the House of Justice is via the counsellors who are appointed, who then bring this to the ITC, who in turn are appointed by the UHJ.

    As Baquia pointed out in The Circle is complete now all current members of the UHJ were previously members of the ITC.

    I posted on the Bahai group on Facebook the following (below), and I wonder if anyone here might have further information or can correct me if I have misunderstood this, as it seems now that councellors are to approve proclamation plans in the U.S.A. and not the NSA. It seems here that the appointed are taking the administrative functions.

    X, I’ve never heard that the Media Campaign organised by NSA of the USA a few years ago had “the problem was that we got too many responses that we could not handle!”

    In the NSA’s own report to their national convention, Ridvan 2007 (I’ve posted excerpts from this below) it was a success and they proposed to continue with this, but then the UHJ wrote a letter afterwards for the delegates which said that:

    [quote comment=""]“19 Apri1 2007

    The National Spiritual Assembly of the Bah??’?s of the United States

    … In this light, what must be recognized is that the most recent
    sharp decline from some 2,000 to 1,000 annual enrollments occurred
    between 1997 and 2003, a period during which an appreciation for the
    provisions of the global Plans had not yet been fully gained in the
    United States and, as a result, emphasis was being given to certain
    kinds of measures ­to proclamation through the media, to initiatives
    designed specifically for and by Local Spiritual Assemblies, to
    inspirational appeals intended to capture the believers’ imagination
    and stir them to action, and to extensive analyses of diverse topics.

    It should be clear, then, that a return to such measures will not
    serve the needs of the American Bah??’? community. This is not to
    suggest that there is no room for proclamation in the plans of
    action, for example, for a cluster in which the institute process is
    sufficiently advanced and in which new souls need to be attracted to
    firesides and core activities. Nor is it to diminish the importance
    of the evolving role Local Assemblies play in the new realities being created at the grassroots. However, what is essential is for such roles and functions to take shape within the framework for action that has been elaborated in the message dated 27 December 2005 to the Conference of the Continental Boards of Counsellors.”[/quote]

    In effect this means that all proclamation plans all have to be approved by the continental board of the Councellors and an effect of this was that the Media Campaign ceased to exist.
    If there had been too many responses or some sort of problem with the declarations, Sean, I would imagine that the NSA’s Ridvan report would have mentioned this and in that case would not have proposed further use of the Media Campaign. Here is an excerpt from their report:

    [quote comment=""]“Ridvan 2007 Annual Message

    National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of the United States

    page 8)

    Another issue is proclamation. While we fully appreciate the need for
    Baha’i communities to avoid placing undue emphasis on proclamation
    activities, we have learned from experience that the proper use of
    media and other forms of proclamation can be invaluable tools for
    generating seekers, whose interest can then be nurtured through the
    core activities or other forms of teaching. Our national media
    initiative practiced the same disciplines of planning, action, and
    reflection that the House of Justice is exhorting Baha’is everywhere
    to acquire.
    Nearly 1,000 souls entered the Faith through experimental television
    broadcasts and Internet proclamations. A recent study showed that one
    out of every six new believers’ first point of contact was the Baha’i public website or the Seeker Response telephone line. The problem we face is that proclamation is widely considered to be inconsistent with the framework for action in the Five Year Plan, making it difficult to engage the friends in serious discussion of the uses of media to generate seekers in advanced clusters.

    Past experiments have taught us that through media, especially the
    Internet, we can learn a great deal about seekers’ hopes and cares
    and, especially, about the location of receptive populations. “[/quote]

  • David

    Since the UHJ sees an opening in a time of crisis, I wonder how they and NSAs feel about the trade-off they’re making. I’m nowhere near convinced the current economic upheavels will bring in lots of people to the Faith; no such thing happened after 9/11. But it is already the case that the worldwide financial problems have caused a drop in giving to the Bahai funds. The first half of the Bahai year is over but the U.S. National Fund has received only one-fourth of their fund goal.

  • David

    Since the UHJ sees an opening in a time of crisis, I wonder how they and NSAs feel about the trade-off they’re making. I’m nowhere near convinced the current economic upheavels will bring in lots of people to the Faith; no such thing happened after 9/11. But it is already the case that the worldwide financial problems have caused a drop in giving to the Bahai funds. The first half of the Bahai year is over but the U.S. National Fund has received only one-fourth of their fund goal.

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    …Just getting back to the 41 regional cobferences for a moment, I wonder which lucky two ITC members will get to represent the House at the Lubumbashi conference on 2-23 November. That’s Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in case you were wondering.

    I hate it when facts get in the way of a good story, but Lubumbashi does seem to be safely distant and isolated from the areas of unrest and genocide.

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    …Just getting back to the 41 regional cobferences for a moment, I wonder which lucky two ITC members will get to represent the House at the Lubumbashi conference on 2-23 November. That’s Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in case you were wondering.

    I hate it when facts get in the way of a good story, but Lubumbashi does seem to be safely distant and isolated from the areas of unrest and genocide.

  • farhan

    David wrote:
    I’m nowhere near convinced the current economic upheavels will bring in lots of people to the Faith;

    David, we are not seeking to bring lots of people into the Faith, but lots of Faith to the people. Those who then have enough Faith to serve and consecrate themselves to others can throw in their lot by accepting all the sacrifices it implies to become Baha’is; the others are welcome to just serve themselves at God’s generous table.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    David wrote:
    I’m nowhere near convinced the current economic upheavels will bring in lots of people to the Faith;

    David, we are not seeking to bring lots of people into the Faith, but lots of Faith to the people. Those who then have enough Faith to serve and consecrate themselves to others can throw in their lot by accepting all the sacrifices it implies to become Baha’is; the others are welcome to just serve themselves at God’s generous table.

  • David

    “David, we are not seeking to bring lots of people into the Faith…”

    Oh, okay. So all that ‘Entry By Troops’ talk is just an act. I’m glad someone finally told me the truth.

  • David

    “David, we are not seeking to bring lots of people into the Faith…”

    Oh, okay. So all that ‘Entry By Troops’ talk is just an act. I’m glad someone finally told me the truth.

  • farhan

    David wrote:
    Oh, okay. So all that ‘Entry By Troops’ talk is just an act. I’m glad someone finally told me the truth.

    David, I see entry by troops as providing fast food at God’s table for the hungering millions. How many of these become catering staff once fed, is another question. There is a difference between bringing in the hungry, and enrolling catering staff.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    David wrote:
    Oh, okay. So all that ‘Entry By Troops’ talk is just an act. I’m glad someone finally told me the truth.

    David, I see entry by troops as providing fast food at God’s table for the hungering millions. How many of these become catering staff once fed, is another question. There is a difference between bringing in the hungry, and enrolling catering staff.

  • Grover

    [quote post="534"]David, I see entry by troops as providing fast food at God’s table for the hungering millions. How many of these become catering staff once fed, is another question. There is a difference between bringing in the hungry, and enrolling catering staff.[/quote]

    Lol Farhan. Do you realise what you just said and how apt it was? Fast food = preprocessed, heat and eat, poor quality, bad nutrition, and usually detrimental to the health of the person eating it (aka Ruhi). Usually provided by poorly trained, unskilled, low paid staff (Aka Baha’is). Fast food places such as McDonalds usually has all sorts of bollocky motivational jargony phrases on the walls in the kitchens (Aka UHJ letters). Sums up the Baha’i Faith in a nut shell.

  • Grover

    [quote post="534"]David, I see entry by troops as providing fast food at God’s table for the hungering millions. How many of these become catering staff once fed, is another question. There is a difference between bringing in the hungry, and enrolling catering staff.[/quote]

    Lol Farhan. Do you realise what you just said and how apt it was? Fast food = preprocessed, heat and eat, poor quality, bad nutrition, and usually detrimental to the health of the person eating it (aka Ruhi). Usually provided by poorly trained, unskilled, low paid staff (Aka Baha’is). Fast food places such as McDonalds usually has all sorts of bollocky motivational jargony phrases on the walls in the kitchens (Aka UHJ letters). Sums up the Baha’i Faith in a nut shell.

  • farhan

    Grover wrote :
    Lol Farhan. Do you realise what you just said and how apt it was? Fast food = preprocessed, heat and eat, poor quality, bad nutrition, and usually detrimental to the health of the person eating it (aka Ruhi).

    Grover, this is prejudice on your part. Mc Donalds that I occasionally enjoy, might be the only type of fast food you know about, but it is certainly not the only type of fast food available around the world. All kinds of sandwiches, hotdogs, pizzas, and dietetic vegetarian snacks are available. There are times when we cannot enjoy a gastronomically restaurant, nor cook our favourite dishes at home. I often use almonds or pistachio nuts as a meal when I travel. They have more protein than meat.
    I remember as a child looking through survival kits in safety boats that my dad, an engineer in rubber technology, would recondition. This is how I consider Ruhi. Not as a replacement for Baha’i studies, and other sophisticated activities, but as a means for highly sophisticated and educated intellectuals like your self to help the starving millions. A spiritual survival kit that will empower the spiritually disadvantaged people to later delve in further into the jewels enclosed within God’s revelation.

    The UHJ is inviting some of us to turn away from what we find appetizing and to concern ourselves with what will advance the interests of humanity. I remember posting you a message on the 12th of May this year including the following data:

    Nearly a quarter of 16 to 65-year-olds in the world’s _richest_ countries are functionally illiterate. The most recent National Adult Literacy Survey (NALS) found that four percent of American adults could not perform even the simplest literacy tasks on the survey. Literacy also contributes to the economic and social performance of society.

  • Farhan YAZDANI

    Grover wrote :
    Lol Farhan. Do you realise what you just said and how apt it was? Fast food = preprocessed, heat and eat, poor quality, bad nutrition, and usually detrimental to the health of the person eating it (aka Ruhi).

    Grover, this is prejudice on your part. Mc Donalds that I occasionally enjoy, might be the only type of fast food you know about, but it is certainly not the only type of fast food available around the world. All kinds of sandwiches, hotdogs, pizzas, and dietetic vegetarian snacks are available. There are times when we cannot enjoy a gastronomically restaurant, nor cook our favourite dishes at home. I often use almonds or pistachio nuts as a meal when I travel. They have more protein than meat.
    I remember as a child looking through survival kits in safety boats that my dad, an engineer in rubber technology, would recondition. This is how I consider Ruhi. Not as a replacement for Baha’i studies, and other sophisticated activities, but as a means for highly sophisticated and educated intellectuals like your self to help the starving millions. A spiritual survival kit that will empower the spiritually disadvantaged people to later delve in further into the jewels enclosed within God’s revelation.

    The UHJ is inviting some of us to turn away from what we find appetizing and to concern ourselves with what will advance the interests of humanity. I remember posting you a message on the 12th of May this year including the following data:

    Nearly a quarter of 16 to 65-year-olds in the world’s _richest_ countries are functionally illiterate. The most recent National Adult Literacy Survey (NALS) found that four percent of American adults could not perform even the simplest literacy tasks on the survey. Literacy also contributes to the economic and social performance of society.

  • Masud

    Steve,

    “My question is whether having ITC members (a professional priesthood?) attending these many conferences as representatives of the UHJ doesn’t start to turn them into ?episcopal authorities? (bishops/ayatollahs, in other words) and thus lead to the privilege, corruption and bureaucracy that Shoghi Effendi warned against.”

    Pathetic. Utterly pathetic and contemptible. The ITC members are there to represent the UHJ, who is acting in complete legality by appointing those ITC members to represent them. Obviously the UHJ members can’t be there themselves; first of all, there are too many conferences, they can’t be at all of them, in addition to the fact that some have taken place on the same dates. Secondly, they are obviously very busy, (I can’t wait to see how the Goebellian anti-BAO propagandists are going to jump on THAT statement) so they delegated the task to members of an organization called the International Teaching Center, which, if one actually thinks about it, makes SENSE, given that the conferences are about TEACHING.

    That’s the truth and the more discerning of this forum’s posters and readers ALREADY know it.

  • Masud

    Steve,

    “My question is whether having ITC members (a professional priesthood?) attending these many conferences as representatives of the UHJ doesn’t start to turn them into ?episcopal authorities? (bishops/ayatollahs, in other words) and thus lead to the privilege, corruption and bureaucracy that Shoghi Effendi warned against.”

    Pathetic. Utterly pathetic and contemptible. The ITC members are there to represent the UHJ, who is acting in complete legality by appointing those ITC members to represent them. Obviously the UHJ members can’t be there themselves; first of all, there are too many conferences, they can’t be at all of them, in addition to the fact that some have taken place on the same dates. Secondly, they are obviously very busy, (I can’t wait to see how the Goebellian anti-BAO propagandists are going to jump on THAT statement) so they delegated the task to members of an organization called the International Teaching Center, which, if one actually thinks about it, makes SENSE, given that the conferences are about TEACHING.

    That’s the truth and the more discerning of this forum’s posters and readers ALREADY know it.

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    [quote comment=""]“Pathetic. Utterly pathetic and contemptible.”

    “I can’t wait to see how the Goebellian anti-BAO propagandists are going to jump on THAT statement.”

    “That’s the truth and the more discerning of this forum’s posters and readers ALREADY know it.”[/quote]

    Ad hominem.

    Just to clarify. I’m talking about an effect, not necessarily an intention. Is the effect happening? The breathless reports in the baha’i blogosphere about what the various ITC Counsellors have said at each of the conferences indicate that it is.

    Here’s an example.

    ka kite
    Steve

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    [quote comment=""]“Pathetic. Utterly pathetic and contemptible.”

    “I can’t wait to see how the Goebellian anti-BAO propagandists are going to jump on THAT statement.”

    “That’s the truth and the more discerning of this forum’s posters and readers ALREADY know it.”[/quote]

    Ad hominem.

    Just to clarify. I’m talking about an effect, not necessarily an intention. Is the effect happening? The breathless reports in the baha’i blogosphere about what the various ITC Counsellors have said at each of the conferences indicate that it is.

    Here’s an example.

    ka kite
    Steve

  • Masud

    Steve,

    If I’ve understood you correctly, you provided that “Vision for the Future” slideshow as evidence supporting your contention that ITC members have turned into ?episcopal authorities? (bishops/ayatollahs, in other words) and thus lead to the privilege, corruption and bureaucracy that Shoghi Effendi warned against.??

    If that’s the case, I think you just destroyed you’re own argument. The fantastic slideshow you provided me with, for which I thank you very much, shows the degree of dedication of the ITC members to the Cause. I don’t see how the statements in the slideshow point to any kind of clerical attitudes; on the contrary, I see those statements as guidance so that we can be our OWN clergy. (e.g. “take yourself into account each day…”)

  • Masud

    Steve,

    If I’ve understood you correctly, you provided that “Vision for the Future” slideshow as evidence supporting your contention that ITC members have turned into ?episcopal authorities? (bishops/ayatollahs, in other words) and thus lead to the privilege, corruption and bureaucracy that Shoghi Effendi warned against.??

    If that’s the case, I think you just destroyed you’re own argument. The fantastic slideshow you provided me with, for which I thank you very much, shows the degree of dedication of the ITC members to the Cause. I don’t see how the statements in the slideshow point to any kind of clerical attitudes; on the contrary, I see those statements as guidance so that we can be our OWN clergy. (e.g. “take yourself into account each day…”)

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    [quote comment=""]If I’ve understood you correctly, you provided that “Vision for the Future” slideshow as evidence supporting your contention that ITC members have turned into ?episcopal authorities? (bishops/ayatollahs, in other words) and thus lead to the privilege, corruption and bureaucracy that Shoghi Effendi warned against.??[/quote]

    Just to clarify, I’m saying there’s a danger of that, and the slideshow is one example of that process.

    [quote comment=""]The fantastic slideshow you provided me with, for which I thank you very much, shows the degree of dedication of the ITC members to the Cause. I don’t see how the statements in the slideshow point to any kind of clerical attitudes;[/quote]

    But where are the quotes from the rank and file, who presumably have insights of their own? The 50,000, and counting, participants (congregation) are invisible.

    [quote comment=""]…on the contrary, I see those statements as guidance so that we can be our OWN clergy. (e.g. “take yourself into account each day…”)[/quote]

    Ah yes, Penny Walker’s contribution. That’s a flawed piece of work, yet it’s held up as words of wisdom, from on high.

    ka kite
    Steve

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    [quote comment=""]If I’ve understood you correctly, you provided that “Vision for the Future” slideshow as evidence supporting your contention that ITC members have turned into ?episcopal authorities? (bishops/ayatollahs, in other words) and thus lead to the privilege, corruption and bureaucracy that Shoghi Effendi warned against.??[/quote]

    Just to clarify, I’m saying there’s a danger of that, and the slideshow is one example of that process.

    [quote comment=""]The fantastic slideshow you provided me with, for which I thank you very much, shows the degree of dedication of the ITC members to the Cause. I don’t see how the statements in the slideshow point to any kind of clerical attitudes;[/quote]

    But where are the quotes from the rank and file, who presumably have insights of their own? The 50,000, and counting, participants (congregation) are invisible.

    [quote comment=""]…on the contrary, I see those statements as guidance so that we can be our OWN clergy. (e.g. “take yourself into account each day…”)[/quote]

    Ah yes, Penny Walker’s contribution. That’s a flawed piece of work, yet it’s held up as words of wisdom, from on high.

    ka kite
    Steve

  • Masud

    Steve,

    “But where are the quotes from the rank and file, who presumably have insights of their own? The 50,000, and counting, participants (congregation) are invisible.”

    Here they are: http://news.bahai.org/community-news/regional-conferences/

    And a friend of mine was at the Manila conference and specifically remembers Penny Walker’s speech; I remember her telling me that it was in the spirit of emphasizing the power of prayer; in the passage that was quoted in wordpress by McGlinn, she was simply giving her take on the hidden word and its relation to the Five Year Plan. She wasn’t telling us how to pray. And even if she were, it’s just like someone asking someone else to pray for them at the Shrines; does that constitute trampling on the privacy of individuals in terms of their private relationship with God?

    You’re seeing what you want to see, Steve.

  • Masud

    Steve,

    “But where are the quotes from the rank and file, who presumably have insights of their own? The 50,000, and counting, participants (congregation) are invisible.”

    Here they are: http://news.bahai.org/community-news/regional-conferences/

    And a friend of mine was at the Manila conference and specifically remembers Penny Walker’s speech; I remember her telling me that it was in the spirit of emphasizing the power of prayer; in the passage that was quoted in wordpress by McGlinn, she was simply giving her take on the hidden word and its relation to the Five Year Plan. She wasn’t telling us how to pray. And even if she were, it’s just like someone asking someone else to pray for them at the Shrines; does that constitute trampling on the privacy of individuals in terms of their private relationship with God?

    You’re seeing what you want to see, Steve.

  • greg

    Gdday All.
    Well I attend the conference the other weekend and as I predicted… I was sorely tempted to walk up to Counseller Hall ( whom I have spoken to a couple of times over the years … mainly when he was NSA sec) and hand him my Baha’i ID card…. to put it bluntly , I will not be told how to think , what to think and when to think it…. i am sorry to say that the apparrent purpose of the 41 conferences are/is little more then one gaint cattle prod to the rump of the Baha’i community at large(imho)…… I am totally amazed by the thought process of Baha’is that I know to be ussually thoughtfull Baha’is , there is a “group think’ going on in the Baha’i Community at large ( at least it appears that way to me).
    If you dont think and behave in the Ruhi mindset then your disobediant and unspiritual…..

    Cheers.
    greg

  • greg

    Gdday All.
    Well I attend the conference the other weekend and as I predicted… I was sorely tempted to walk up to Counseller Hall ( whom I have spoken to a couple of times over the years … mainly when he was NSA sec) and hand him my Baha’i ID card…. to put it bluntly , I will not be told how to think , what to think and when to think it…. i am sorry to say that the apparrent purpose of the 41 conferences are/is little more then one gaint cattle prod to the rump of the Baha’i community at large(imho)…… I am totally amazed by the thought process of Baha’is that I know to be ussually thoughtfull Baha’is , there is a “group think’ going on in the Baha’i Community at large ( at least it appears that way to me).
    If you dont think and behave in the Ruhi mindset then your disobediant and unspiritual…..

    Cheers.
    greg

  • Craig Parke

    Thanks for your report greg. As I have said here many times, after decades in the Faith serving on many levls and capacities I was completely shattered emotionally when I took Ruhi Book One back in early 2004. It really threw me. I just could not believe people I had known and liked for many years accepted this utter mind bending rubbish and methodologies as a credible system of thought of any kind! It was shocking and it was a frightening revelation. My once beloved unique individual qualia (Google it) Spirit led bottom up Faith was now firmly on the road to Zombie driven top down totalitarian mind control group-think. I see no other outcome than this all ending in spectacular failure just as all the top down systems that took this road before it. How could such a thing happen? How could this radical new narrative of the Baha'i Faith happen?

    Lately I was reading about the work of Laurie Santos (the "Monkey Whisperer" ) in a study of economics among our primate brethren. I think something of this mechanism is at work in the new psychological transactions at work in the machinery of the Faith.

    http://discovermagazine.com/2008/nov/13-the-monke
    Have the monkeys surprised you in any other ways?

    "We did a similar study in a risky context, where both experimen­ters start out offering three pieces of something. The first experimenter appears to offer three items but each time ultimately gives the monkey two, so the monkey gets a loss, but it’s a safe, consistent loss. The second experimenter starts out offering three but introduces more risk: Sometimes the monkey gets all three, but sometimes it gets only one. We find that the monkeys prefer to go with the second experimenter. They prefer to risk losing more because there is also a chance they will have no loss at all. That is just what humans do."

    I think people are bartering for some kind of phantom psychological safety gain in this transaction. They want security. But anyone who has seen much more in life knows that this is fraudulent illusion. As an organization the Baha'i Faith cannot deliver on it's promises. It never has. That does not cause me any grief. The Baha'i Faith as an organization has always been an utter failure from Day One. The sorry record speaks for itself. But when the ability of the Baha'i Writings to inspire individual spiritual progress and individual spiritual action in the many spheres of life beyond trying to convert other people to be Zombies for God too becomes extinguished then i truly grieve. This is what has happened. people have sold their birthright for porridge as the story goes in the Bible. Monkeys cry out for bread (three pieces of apple) and are cheated and given none by the organization controllers. The same old, same old in the history of the Abrahamic religions.

  • Craig Parke

    Thanks for your report greg. As I have said here many times, after decades in the Faith serving on many levls and capacities I was completely shattered emotionally when I took Ruhi Book One back in early 2004. It really threw me. I just could not believe people I had known and liked for many years accepted this utter mind bending rubbish and methodologies as a credible system of thought of any kind! It was shocking and it was a frightening revelation. My once beloved unique individual qualia (Google it) Spirit led bottom up Faith was now firmly on the road to Zombie driven top down totalitarian mind control group-think. I see no other outcome than this all ending in spectacular failure just as all the top down systems that took this road before it. How could such a thing happen? How could this radical new narrative of the Baha'i Faith happen?

    Lately I was reading about the work of Laurie Santos (the "Monkey Whisperer" ) in a study of economics among our primate brethren. I think something of this mechanism is at work in the new psychological transactions at work in the machinery of the Faith.

    http://discovermagazine.com/2008/nov/13-the-monke

    Have the monkeys surprised you in any other ways?

    "We did a similar study in a risky context, where both experimen­ters start out offering three pieces of something. The first experimenter appears to offer three items but each time ultimately gives the monkey two, so the monkey gets a loss, but it’s a safe, consistent loss. The second experimenter starts out offering three but introduces more risk: Sometimes the monkey gets all three, but sometimes it gets only one. We find that the monkeys prefer to go with the second experimenter. They prefer to risk losing more because there is also a chance they will have no loss at all. That is just what humans do."

    I think people are bartering for some kind of phantom psychological safety gain in this transaction. They want security. But anyone who has seen much more in life knows that this is fraudulent illusion. As an organization the Baha'i Faith cannot deliver on it's promises. It never has. That does not cause me any grief. The Baha'i Faith as an organization has always been an utter failure from Day One. The sorry record speaks for itself. But when the ability of the Baha'i Writings to inspire individual spiritual progress and individual spiritual action in the many spheres of life beyond trying to convert other people to be Zombies for God too becomes extinguished then i truly grieve. This is what has happened. people have sold their birthright for porridge as the story goes in the Bible. Monkeys cry out for bread (three pieces of apple) and are cheated and given none by the organization controllers. The same old, same old in the history of the Abrahamic religions.

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