Christian worship service

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by KnowSelf, Dec 15, 2019.

  1. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    I am interested in religions! The Baha'i (and Babi) faith is fascinating to study, there are so many interesting parallels to early Islam and also to early Christianity; echoes of the scant fragments of the biography of Mani (the founder of Manichaeism) and other Middle Eastern religions - and they do have amazing poetic scripture. Head over to the Baha'i section to read some mystical poetry in the thread "Ode of the Dove" https://www.interfaith.org/community/threads/19293/ A bit like Crowley (meant as a compliment), but without the adolescent Emo vibes of the latter.
     
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  2. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    @Trailblazer

    Some of your posts have landed late after Moderator approval of the links included. I cannot speak for moderators but it should not last long. As a new member they check the links for spam and hate speech etc, that faith websites attract. They are based in America so there's a time lapse.

    It is a pleasure to have you here. I have encountered you before on another forum (which I soon left in despair at the level of some/most discussion there, but continue to lurk around sometimes). I enjoy and respect your posts.

    Best wishes :)
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2019
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  3. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea An ordinary cup of tea

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    This idea of a meld of democracy and theocracy have been mentioned before here, but not expanded on. Do you have any ideas of how that would work. How do you practically implement faith in a democracy? What is up to the divine, and what is up to the people?

    Also, you mentioned that you have felt bullied of other forums previously, not knowing what for that took, how do you experience the criticism directed at the Baha'i in this thread? To be honest, I would bring up the same points that Cino and Corbet have, but they are doing a fine job without me, no need to pile on!
     
  4. Truthseeker9

    Truthseeker9 Active Member

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    What the Baha'i Faith envisions is a federalized system of government like the United States, with only questions of international concern decided with the centralized government. Before I say any more let me quote from Shoghi Effendi:

    The unity of the human race, as envisaged by Bahá’u’lláh, implies the establishment of a world commonwealth in which all nations, races, creeds and classes are closely and permanently united, and in which the autonomy of its state members and the personal freedom and initiative of the individuals that compose them are definitely and completely safeguarded. This commonwealth must, as far as we can visualize it, consist of a world legislature, whose members will, as the trustees of the whole of mankind, ultimately control the entire resources of all the component nations, and will enact such laws as shall be required to regulate the life, satisfy the needs and adjust the relationships of all races and peoples. A world executive, backed by an international Force, will carry out the decisions arrived at, and apply the laws enacted by, this world legislature, and will safeguard the organic unity of the whole commonwealth. A world tribunal will adjudicate and deliver its compulsory and final verdict in all and any disputes that may arise between the various elements constituting this universal system. A mechanism of world inter-communication will be devised, embracing the whole planet, freed from national hindrances and restrictions, and functioning with marvellous swiftness and perfect regularity. A world metropolis will act as the nerve center of a world civilization, the focus towards which the unifying forces of life will converge and from which its energizing influences will radiate. A world language will either be invented or chosen from among the existing languages and will be taught in the schools of all the federated nations as an auxiliary to their mother tongue. A world script, a world literature, a uniform and universal system of currency, of weights and measures, will simplify and facilitate intercourse and understanding among the nations and races of mankind. In such a world society, science and religion, the two most potent forces in human life, will be reconciled, will coöperate, and will harmoniously develop. The press will, under such a system, while giving full scope to the expression of the diversified views and convictions of mankind, cease to be mischievously manipulated by vested interests, whether private or public, and will be liberated from the influence of contending governments and peoples. The economic resources of the world will be organized, its sources of raw materials will be tapped and fully utilized, its markets will be coördinated and developed, and the distribution of its products will be equitably regulated.

    National rivalries, hatreds, and intrigues will cease, and racial animosity and prejudice will be replaced by racial amity, understanding and coöperation. The causes of religious strife will be permanently removed, economic barriers and restrictions will be completely abolished, and the inordinate distinction between classes will be obliterated. Destitution on the one hand, and gross accumulation of ownership on the other, will disappear. The enormous energy dissipated and wasted on war, whether economic or political, will be consecrated to such ends as will extend the range of human inventions and technical development, to the increase of the productivity of mankind, to the extermination of disease, to the extension of scientific research, to the raising of the standard of physical health, to the sharpening and refinement of the human brain, to the exploitation of the unused and unsuspected resources of the planet, to the prolongation of human life, and to the furtherance of any other agency that can stimulate the intellectual, the moral, and spiritual life of the entire human race.

    A world federal system, ruling the whole earth and exercising unchallengeable authority over its unimaginably vast resources, blending and embodying the ideals of both the East and the West, liberated from the curse of war and its miseries, and bent on the exploitation of all the available sources of energy on the surface of the planet, a system in which Force is made the servant of Justice, whose life is sustained by its universal recognition of one God and by its allegiance to one common Revelation— such is the goal towards which humanity, impelled by the unifying forces of life, is moving.

    Shoghi Effendi, “The World Order of Bahá’u’lláh” , 7.109
     
  5. Truthseeker9

    Truthseeker9 Active Member

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    It is unknown exactly what the world government will be like exactly. I believe that it will be different in each country. But the rights of all people will be respected, including the right to have a say in what happens, and freedom to believe as one wants. I got this message earlier from the Universal House of Justice:

    Mr. Duane Dawson
    Dear Bahá’í Friend,
    The Universal House of Justice has received your email message of 12 June 2018,
    seeking guidance about the nature of the administration of a country when the majority of its population will have accepted the Faith and how in that circumstance minorities would be treated. We have been asked to convey the following and regret the delay in our response.

    It is not possible to describe with particularity how the governance of a country might be affected when the majority of its people accept the Faith. However, any change will be by democratic means and not by force. The writings of our Faith make it clear that under a Bahá’í system the rights of minorities must always be respected and upheld. Shoghi Effendi has enunciated this principle:
    Unlike the nations and peoples of the earth, be they of the East or of the West,
    democratic or authoritarian, communist or capitalist, whether belonging to the Old
    World or the New, who either ignore, trample upon, or extirpate, the racial,
    religious, or political minorities within the sphere of their jurisdiction, every
    organized community enlisted under the banner of Bahá’u’lláh should feel it to be
    its first and inescapable obligation to nurture, encourage, and safeguard every
    minority belonging to any faith, race, class, or nation within it.
    (The Advent of Divine Justice (Wilmette: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 2006,
    2015 printing), p. 53)
    With loving Bahá’í greetings,
    Department of the Secretariat
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2019
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  6. Truthseeker9

    Truthseeker9 Active Member

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    Why am I sometimes getting the message sometimes that my post is invisible to normal visitors and sometimes not pending moderator approval? I have a post showing what Shoghi Effendi says about our vision of world unity and world government I wanted to show, but I am being shut out.
     
  7. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Every new member goes through a "probation period" where their posts are screened more strictly. Embedded links in particular will trigger the automatic filters, and require human moderator approval. Nothing to be alarmed about, nothing personal, we all went through it.
     
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  8. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Thanks for that, sounds like Shoghi Effendi tried to address some of what I am uncomfortable with. "Should feel" is not the strongest imperative, but it's a start.
     
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  9. KnowSelf

    KnowSelf Active Member

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    Imagine: Imagine the control of a faith endorsed by the government for people's majority who carry out rules and regulations on behalf of the faith. That's a lot of power under one roof. Enough to change the world even if it may be unwanted.
     
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  10. KnowSelf

    KnowSelf Active Member

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    World Faith supported/endorsed by World Government. Tell me it's not a recipe for destruction
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2019
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  11. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Member

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    The UHJ is the only Baha'i institution that is all male and we are told the the reason for that will be revealed to us in due time. I can already think of possible reasons.

    Gay marriage is not the issue, gay sex is the issue. All Abrahamic religions have prohibited gay sex so I accept that there is a reason for that and since the law comes from God I do not question it. Just because something has become popular ans acceptable in modern-day society does not mean it is m.the best for society or the individual. Of course, people want what they want and not what God wants for them and that is the essential problem.
    Of course, if you only look at one side of the story, it might look like grabs for office, intrigue, legal struggles, the dark sides of dynastic leadership. In order to understand what really happened you would have to know more about Baha'i history. There were no difficulties keeping those like Remey from positions of power.
     
  12. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    It also happens to be the most powerful one. I don't have to think very far for possible reasons. But like I said, let's agree to disagree on this one? If patriarchy is part of your faith, who am I to argue, as long as you don't try to impose it on anyone else.
     
  13. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Member

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    Thanks for explaining that. I assumed that meant that only members could read my posts, not visitors, and I assumed that was because of the links in my posts since those were the posts that were moderated.
    Thanks @ RJM Corbet :)

    I guess that can only be one forum because I only go by @Trailblazer on one other forum, aside from Baha'i Forums, and I don't think you are referring to that forum.

    I started posting on forums in January 2013, and most of my forum participation has been on Delphi Forums. I only started going to that 'other forum' because I left a Delphi Forum I was posting on due to unjust treatment. Now I think I have left that other forum you saw me on for the same reason. I am not sure if I will ever return. It might depend upon what happens here, but so far everyone here has been so much more mature and respectful.

    FYI, I do not consider it disrespectful to critique my religion. It does not bother me that people critique my religion, but if they post false information I am obligated to correct that. It is to be expected that a new religion will come under close scrutiny and critique, given it is very different from the older religions in many ways, and it makes some bold claims.

    The disrespectful posters on that 'other forum' did not bother me that much. Of course, we are all free to ignore disrespectful posters, but I have only learned to do that recently. ;)

    It is inequity and injustice on the part of staff I simply cannot tolerate, namely being falsely accused of certain behaviors and having no recourse to defend myself and be heard and acknowledged. Talk about people abusing positions of power. :rolleyes:
     
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  14. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Member

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    I do not want to argue either, but to call the Baha'i Faith patriarchal just because of the UHJ I think is an over-exaggeration. I got into this same discussion about the UHJ with an atheist on another forum. He is the nicest person you would ever want to meet, but he was not going to budge on this issue so we moved on to other topics.

    I think a possible reason is because women are responsible for raising children, and especially when they are babies and young children, the mothers cannot be called away to serve on an institution such as the UHJ. How many Supreme Court justices that were women do you think had babies or small children at home?
     
  15. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Well, doesn't this make you want to apply the independent investigation of truth toolkit for old time's sake to find out why people keep pointing this out?

    There simply is no room to maneuver around the truth that your religion is controlled by a group of men. That's literally what patriarchy means.

    Most religion are patriarchal. Most are trying to address this, as it clashes with the values of modern civilizations. It's only your insistence that the overt patriarchy in the Baha'i faith is not in fact patriarchy which keeps the argument going. But if your religion is based on redefining terms like patriarchy to mean the opposite, then again, who am I to tell you what to believe.

    That's interesing. In my culture, men are allowed to see their progeny. We call these men fathers. They participate in child raising.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2019
  16. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Member

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    I really do not know much about the World Order of Baha'u'llah and what is envisioned for the future. @ Truthseeker9 would know a lot more than me. I do not generally get into discussing politics, it is not an interest of mine. I also live fully in the present, not in the future. Not even the UHJ knows what the World Order will look like.
    I did not feel bullied by anyone except the staff. As I explained to @ RJM Corbet it is inequity and injustice and unfair treatment that I cannot tolerate. I do not care if people critique my religion. I will defend it if that is called for, but sometimes I will just leave it alone. If I offer my opinion and it is rejected I see no reason to keep discussing it.

    I will give you a heads up though. Another thing that bothers me are people who are illogical and act on prejudice. That drives me practically insane because my approach to religion is purely logical, not emotional. I have no mushy gushy feelings towards God or towards Baha'u'llah. I only believe in the Baha'i Faith because the underpinning theology of progressive revelation and the social and spiritual teachings make sense to me.

    As such, I consider it completely illogical to throw an entire religion overboard simply because the UHJ is restricted to men. To say that excludes half of the human race is rather dramatic and I do not go in for drama, only logic. I am very analytical, not emotional. I am sure there is a logical reason why it is all male and I will await the explanation that has been promised. If that explanation is not revealed in my lifetime, I am not going to lose any sleep over it, as it is not a burning issue for me. Regarding the decision Baha'u'llah made for the UHJ to be all male, it would be not only illogical but also arrogant for me to think I know more than Baha'u'llah, a Manifestation of God who spoke as the Voice of God.

    So that is how I think. :)
     
  17. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Member

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    I have an opinion as to why they keep pointing it out. They know nothing about the Baha'i Faith or how it operates so they illogically judge the whole religion based upon the UHJ being all male. They look at the older religions and they cannot dissociate those religions from a new religion that is completely different. They thus commit the fallacy of hasty generalization and the fallacy of jumping to conclusions. Moreover, these judgments are based upon confirmation bias and they are unjust.

    Please excuse me for pointing this out, but the UHJ is not 'controlling the religion' just because they have the final say on 'certain matters.' So big deal if they are all men. They are qualified to do the job and that is what matters. Anyone who used their logical mind rather than acting on prejudice and emotion would ask themselves what difference it would make if women were sitting in the UHJ. They might be just as qualified but they are not necessarily more qualified to do the job just because they are women. If this is all about the image that is portrayed by the religion, that does not matter. All that matters is that the members are qualified to do the job and the job gets done.

    I do not know any Baha'i women who are bothered by this because they have faith in Baha'u'llah and His decisions, and they know that a Manifestation of God knows more than they know about how to structure a religion. It is called humility, an absolute necessity to have in the toolkit if one is to have faith in God and His religion.
    There is no overt partiarchy in the Baha'i Faith just because the UHJ is restricted to men. The UHJ is not "running" the religion. The LSAs and the NSAs are running the religion and he UHJ is not telling them how to do their jobs. There are also many other bodies like the Continental Board of Counselors. Only the UHJ is restricted to men, unlike older religions where all the clergy were restricted to men.
    Let me know when the fathers learn how to breast feed a baby. :rolleyes:
     
  18. Truthseeker9

    Truthseeker9 Active Member

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    The Baha'i Faith is a decentralized organization. Like Trailblazer says the UHJ is not running the religion. The NSA's and LSA's can do whatever they want to do. The only thing we get from the UHJ is broad outlines and encouragement.

    Also I wouldn't jump on one opinion about why the UHJ is only men. I myself doubt that the reason there are only men on the UHJ is because they raise children. Abdu'l-Baha says that women can do whatever they want to do except be on the UHJ. Also men are encouraged to be part of child-raising. Please don't jump to conclusions.

    Do you really think that all truth should be judged by what modern civilizations do.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2019
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  19. StevePame

    StevePame Administrator

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    Thanks for explaining.

    And my thanks to all members for their patience when some of their early posts get flagged for moderation. I recognize it is a bit inconvenient and can add some confusion to the thread order, but it is unfortunately necessary to keep the worst spam off the forum.
     
  20. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    Sure. What a religious community choose to believe is their right, unless it causes hurt or harm. There are all sorts of religious beliefs and structures.

    The problem comes when a religion asserts right from the outset that it intends to establish a one world government and one world faith?

    Of course God's ways are above secular ideas and fashions. But there are people who insist that the beliefs of one particular religion should not be allowed a controlling share of their hard won democratic government. No mattter how prettily the package is wrapped.

    No, no, no! Non, non, non ...

    Assurances from members that everything will be fine because their 'divine messenger' knows best, in fact have the opposite effect on outsiders. They are far from reassuring.

    I will never become a Bahai because Christ is alive to me. So what's going to happen to people like me when this Bahai one world faith government is in place?

    Im sure I'll be told not to worry because everything will be just fine. But that's back to a ruling religion government 'allowing' me to practice my own minority religion. And unlike members of that religion I do not share faith the central decision making supreme court can never be abused by human beings.

    Understood it's far in the future. But the very concept of one world religious government sets alarm bells going. It should do, imo?

    So the discussion is not about religion, but religious government. Theocracy, no matter what we choose to call it?

    It seems to be such a big part of the discussion that it obscures anything else?
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2019

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