Thursday, October 29, 2009

On the Passing of a Former Parliamentarian Who Became a Baha'i: I learned that the party political system will not solve the problems of humanity

Leaders of Israel's Baha'i community will next week commemorate the recent passing of Murray Smith, former Deputy Secretary General of the Baha'i International Community.

Smith, a New Zealander who served in Israel from 1994 to 2007, died last month of cancer at the age of 67 in New Zealand. A former Labor member of parliament in his native land, Smith was a well-known and well-liked figure at diplomatic receptions and events in Israel. ...

Smith served as an MP for three years until 1975. In 1989 he converted to the Baha'i faith, moving to Israel in 1994 with his wife, Miette Smith, who took up the Baha'i faith some years before he did and volunteered at the Baha'i center in Haifa as a librarian.

Believers of the Baha'i Faith refrain from alcoholic drinks, drugs, gambling, theft, violence, adultery and defamation. The Baha'i, for whom Haifa is a major holy site, are forbidden to participate in partisan activities and consider themselves to be apolitical. "From my experience I have learned that the party political system will not solve the problems of humanity", Smith said in an interview in 2007.

During the Second Lebanon War, Murray announced the Baha'i Garden will remain lit at night beyond the normal hours, as a way of "lifting the morale of the people of Haifa."  covered the passing of Baha'i Murray Smith in its online article above. Below is Murray's own overview of his career.
National Secretary and CEO, National Spiritual

Assembly of Baha’i of New Zealand

Earlier this year, I came home to New Zealand after almost

13 years in Haifa, Israel, at the Baha’i World Centre. I

was Deputy Secretary General of the Baha’i international

community, responsible for managing relationships with

the host country and with the diplomatic community.

Haifa has been a highlight in a varied career that included

time in the public sector, three years in Parliament,

shepherding two government-owned entities through

privatisation and consulting for Roger Douglas Associates.

My wife and I returned to New Zealand to retire, but I was

asked to take up my former job as Secretary of the New

Zealand Assembly, and here I am – back full on. It is a

challenging job, but a very interesting one. The basic goal

of the Baha’i faith is world peace. This makes the work very

meaningful which helps a lot to cope with the pressure.

Posted via email from Baha'i Views

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