An introduction.

Discussion in 'Abrahamic Religions' started by od19g6, Nov 20, 2019.

  1. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    Hi everyone.

    I'm new to this site but it looks interesting, like a place for a lot of topics.

    I'm Baha'i, have anyone here have heard of the baha'i faith, if you have what do you think of it?
     
  2. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Welcome! There is a sub-forum dedicated to the Baha'i faith, located in the "new religions" area.

    I never met any Baha'is in real life knowingly. Judging from online interaction, you seem to be a nice bunch.
    Beautiful temples. Interesting to see a new religion emerge from Shiite Islam.
    I don't share the views on non-heterosexual sexuality, marital and inheritance law, the exclusion of women from the highest ecclesiastical office, or the hierarchical, centralized membership structure. I would love to see more of the central texts translated, I would have expected at least the works of the Bab to be available in translation for the big celebrations of the Bab and Baha'u'llah this year. There seem to be funds for building, but not for scholarship. Some of the laws in the Aqdas, marked in commentary as "can't be implemented at this time", are very problematic. And why is there nothing to be found about Baha'i mystics? There are all these tantalizing tablets, and the seven valleys - nobody is exploring this openly?

    I have critique for all religious organizations, not just yours, please don't be put off by this lengthy reply to your introduction.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2019
  3. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    Oh I'm not put off at all and I welcome sincere questions that you may have.

    I think that we shouldn't be afraid to asks questions about anything especially if those questions lead to more understanding.

    Half of the questions that you have can be answered as this is a new faith that is in the world that is just a little over 200 yr old, while the others are over 3000, 2000 and 1000 yr old, I think that it needs time to grow and really establish itself in the world. Some of the things in this faith can not be implemented right now, they're to be implemented in the future.

    I believe that the purpose of the laws that where in the different religions whether that be judaism, christianity or islam have been to establish order in the world. As we all know we have government and civil law and order in society. So it is with divine revelations, they have spiritual law and order.
     
  4. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Thank you for replying!

    My point was, I do not wish to see some of the dormant laws of the Aqdas ever to be implemented. Humanity has experimented with theocratic forms of government, and the results have been bad throughout.
     
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  5. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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    Welcome

    If you check out the Baha'i board you'll find a very active member that keeps us up to date with holidays, temple construction, and persecution of those of your faith.

    My wish is you enjoy your time here and find discussions worthy of your participation.
     
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  6. RabbiO

    RabbiO הרב יונה בן זכריה

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    Welcome to this forum.

    I admire the energy of you young folks - I’m twice your age. Just how many forums have you signed up with in the last few days?

    Again, welcome.
     
  7. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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    Ah...but remember 36? My twins were born, it was the end of.my footloose and free, no more hitchhiking cross country, had to buckle down to life, the end of one period the beginning of the next. I only had a 4 bedroom house, where was I gonna put kids, had to either trade in the truck or the sports car for a minivan. I was clowning and juggling, time to go back to a real job...
     
  8. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    Thanks.
     
  9. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    Like I said those laws are for a future civilization which will be long after us.

    Do you think that civilizations of the past and the people before us actually saw the world as it is right now in this day in age?

    Don't worry about a strict theocratic government. The baha'i faith is about recognizing spiritual origins of all faiths and and the genetic origins of the human species. This is about unity in diversity.
     
  10. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    Thanks.

    I am signed with a few forums, got to inform people about the message of Baha'u'llah as much as I can. The world needs it.
     
  11. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    "After us, the deluge"? I think we sould learn from past mistakes. We can observe how today's fundamentalists misuse the holy texts of older religions. Why give future fundamentalists a free pass, if we can already anticipate how they will interpret laws like "Non-Bahá'í heirs do not inherit", even if today this is not enforced? For a millennia-old tribal religion in the hands of today's literalists, this would already be bad enough. Why not address this today, before it is too late?

    No. But they are long gone. This is now. We are here.

    Well, what do you think is more likely? That one day women will serve as members of the Baha'i International house of Justice, or that one day Bahai's will obsess about female virginity, as in "Should the husband, after the payment of the dowry, discover that the wife is not a virgin, the refund of the dowry and of the expenses incurred may be demanded."? The former has been ruled out today by the house of Justice. The latter is actually spelled out in the Aqdas, so the bad seeds are there, even if they have not taken root yet...

    More power to you, then! Even more so if you decide to work towards true emancipation of women within the institutions of the Baha'i faith, as befits a modern religion.

    Good to have you here.
     
  12. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    I would first like to ask and suggest that we don't focus on what negative and evil people say and do. The main goal of the baha'i faith is to vanquish evil and negativity with positivity and divine education. Baha'u'llah says that in this day and age human beings are responsible to independently investigate and seek truths with their own mind. People will always have free will and they will choose whether to use that will for good or for negativity.

    You said: 'Why give future fundamentalists a free pass, if we can already anticipate how they will interpret laws like "Non-Bahá'í heirs do not inherit", even if today this is not enforced'?

    Well how do you know it will be future fundamentalists...?

    What you don't understand about this faith is that the theme of unity is it's alpha and omega. The baha'i faith have things and institutions that no other religion have had in history. We have organizing institutions known as local and national spiritual assemblies and a universal house of justice, all of which are to organize and keep the unity of this faith. The universal house of justice is the head of the baha'i world and it's job is to legislate on future issues. There are no sects of the baha'i faith because of the universal house of justice.

    You said: 'they are long gone. This is now. We are here'.

    Exactly and guess what, they will say those exact words when we are long gone as well.

    To be honest with you a lot of what you are talking about I'm not even worried about right now, I'm really not. Those things will get legislated on and be made more clear as time goes on in the future.

    Right now let's first do the job of recognizing that human beings are one family and this earth is our home.
     
  13. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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    Inform and discuss away...

    Don't expect converts, expect questions and responses.

    Watch the line of proselytizing we don't go for that round here.
     
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  14. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    Exactly. As a matter of fact I believe that no one can ever convert someone else, only God can convert someone. Our job is simply just share the message and listen.

    p.s. what's proselytizing...?
     
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  15. Arif Ghamiq

    Arif Ghamiq Active Member

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    "Surely you cannot guide whom you love, but Allah guides whom He pleases, and He knows best the followers of the right way."

    (Qur'an - 28:56)

    "And say: ‘The truth is from your Lord.’ Then whosoever wills, let him believe; and whosoever wills, let him disbelieve.”

    (Qur'an - 18:29)

     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2019
  16. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    I say yes and no to that. Yes, because I don't want them to drag me down. No, because it is very short-sighted not to keep an eye on them.

    So what do you think I'm doing, if not independently investigating the truth and exercising my free will? (Just teasing you. I am in favor of investigating the truth; not sure about free will, it seems to be awfully limited to warrant such a grand title).

    When the going gets tough, the fundamentalists tend to come out of the woodwork. This happened over and over again in the past. It is reasonable to expect it will happen in the future, especially given the challenges ahead, with overpopulation, mounting social inequality, climate change, new types of disease without a cure, resources running out, wars... Just crack open a history book and investigate the truth.

    It's easy to anticipate how they will interpret this commandment: They will interpret it literally, as fundamentalists always do. Non-Believers in the family will not inherit a cent if they have their way.

    Actually, the truth is that there are Baha'i sects, according to Wikipedia: Those who accepted Remey as Guardian, the Orthodox Baha'is, and others. They may be small communities, but they do exist. Pretending they don't exist smacks of denial to me, rather than facing the truth.

    That will be then. They are yet unborn. What kind of world do we want them to inherit?

    So, will women be allowed to participate in that legislation and clarification? Because currently, they are excluded, it seems.

    Amen to that. As far as I'm concerned, the family includes gay couples, polyamorous people, trans- and pansexual beings, unbelievers, oh, and my mother, sisters and daughters are not answerable to male family members about the state of their hymens.
     
  17. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    Yup.
     
  18. od19g6

    od19g6 New Member

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    'The unity of the human species includes every one. We have to live on this planet together'.

    'I hope you can read the replys cino, mine are in quotes'. Click to expand.
     
  19. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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  20. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Thank you for your thoughts!

    Regarding Baha'i sects: of course you can define them away like this. In my opinion, this is akin to "making the people around me go away by closing my eyes", but if this way of dealing with the existence of people who believe in Baha'u'llah but are not in communion with the Universal house of Justice works for you, then that works for me, who am I to judge your beliefs.

    What doesn't work for me that well is when the beliefs of your group clash with the rights of non-involved people. Right now, the Baha'i faith is not a large and powerful group, so your problematic marriage and inheritance laws and views on sexuality don't impact people outside the faith much, though there probably are some family tragedies that can be traced back to these issues.

    But if your efforts to be a major world religion with political power are successful, then by that time, even if you and I are no longer around, these issues would start to affect everybody, even those who don't subscribe to the laws in the Aqdas. We've seen this whenever a religion got hold of political power, over and over in history. Your attitude of "it's just going to be all right, the Baha'i faith is different" is frankly worrying to me. I have a child, who may have children in turn. Will they live in a world where Baha'is hold political power, with all these issues un-addressed, and by that time, unchangeable and enshrined forever? Do you personally vote for candidates in your level of the administrative hierarchy, who will work towards changing these laws to bring then truly in-line with the diversity side of your admirable principle of "unity in diversity"? Is there discussion within the faith about these issues?

    It would, in fact, improve my opinion of the Baha'i faith if I knew that there was earnest efforts and lively democratic discussion underway to address these shortcomings, which are from an outside point of view deeply anachronistic and unworthy, in my opinion, of a modern religion. If you don't see them as shortcomings, well, then in my opinion the Bahai's are not better by one iota than all the other world faiths who hold on to similar small-minded views, and they are worse for not taking the opportunity now, early in the development of their faith, to fix these problems.

    Even many Christian denominations are starting to relax about gay relationships, women's reproductive organs, and the status of non-believers. You Baha'is, who put so much emphasis on interfaith communication, are badly served by a law in your holiest book stating flatly that non-believers are not allowed to inherit. You Baha'is who value women's rights so much, are badly represented by an all-male House of Justice or by a law that is explicitly about a woman's hymen.

    P.S. If you'd like to do quoting using the forum's functionality, then start each quote with the word [ QUOTE] in square brackets, and end it with [ /QUOTE] in square brackets. I included a space after the square bracket to prevent the forum software from interpreting it, so remove it when you actually want to quote something.
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2019
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