Friday, December 31, 2010
On Immigration: Tell the rich of the midnight sighing of the poor, lest heedlessness lead them into the path of destruction
They started washing my filthy car and I was standing there watching them and thinking to myself. I noticed they were getting water from a pipe in an unused house lot and the electricity from the street wires. They were working as fast as they could and doing their best. I started thinking about the things people do to make money. At least, these guys are doing something not criminal or endangering other people's lives.I felt happy they had something to do and get money to eat. I felt happy I didn't and don't have to do this kind of jobs because I am a professional. Not that I could not do this job, it's just that I am making more money and my family feels safe. All of a sudden I thought I may have to do these in Canada. Could people do this in Canada? I mean, can you just go, connect your super pump in someone else's water pipe, hang some wires and get the electricity, and just start washing cars in the street and make a living out of it?Will I end up doing this to provide for my family? How would my kids feel? One thing for sure is I won't let my loved ones just starve, I will do whatever necessary to feed them, anything provided it is legal, of course. I don't want to drift away from God.
O CHILDREN OF DUST!
Tell the rich of the midnight sighing of the poor, lest heedlessness lead them into the path of destruction, and deprive them of the Tree of Wealth.
Know ye not why We created you all from the same dust? That no one should exalt himself over the other. Ponder at all times in your hearts how ye were created. Since We have created you all from one same substance it is incumbent on you to be even as one soul, to walk with the same feet, eat with the same mouth and dwell in the same land, that from your inmost being, by your deeds and actions, the signs of oneness and the essence of detachment may be made manifest.
Posted by GWD at 9:17 AM
Thursday, December 30, 2010
On Being Lifted Up to Such Wonderful Heights: Studying the letter from the Universal House of Justice
December 28th, 9:30 pm. I have just finished my first read of this Message, gasped at the number 5000, and been lifted up to such wonderful heights by the vision of the Universal House of Justice. There is so much I want to write, but I know that I need to go over this message again. And again. And again. I have no doubt that what I want to say will shift and change as I really sit down and study it.But my first thought, dear Reader, was of you. I wanted to encourage you to read this message as soon as you can, and study it with as many of the friends as you can. Read it section by section, and all the while look how to apply it. I'm sure you will, but I wanted to make sure to throw in a word of encouragement, just in case it takes that little extra nudge. After my own first quick read of this letter, one thing in particular really stands out to me. It is found on page 14, or paragraph 37.
Posted by GWD at 2:24 PM
Monday, December 27, 2010
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Friday, December 24, 2010
We are currently in Israel on a 9-day pilgrimage to the Baha'i Holy Places visiting the final resting place of Baha'u'llah and the places associated with His exile, imprisonment and life here in the late 1800s at the end of the Ottoman Empire. Our visit has been an intensely spiritual and sacred experience as well as a little taste of paradise. The Baha'i gardens and holy places are exquisite in their beauty and refinement. We have had lots of time for refreshing personal reflection and prayer. A wonderful way to prepare for the New Year and the rest of our lives!
Posted by GWD at 8:28 PM
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
And among the teachings of Bahá’u’lláh is that although material civilization is one of the means for the progress of the world of mankind, yet until it becomes combined with Divine civilization, the desired result, which is the felicity of mankind, will not be attained. Consider! These battleships that reduce a city to ruins within the space of an hour are the result of material civilization; likewise the Krupp guns, the Mauser rifles, dynamite, submarines, torpedo boats, armed aircraft and bombers—all these weapons of war are the malignant fruits of material civilization. Had material civilization been combined with Divine civilization, these fiery weapons would never have been invented. Nay, rather, human energy would have been wholly devoted to useful inventions and would have been concentrated on praiseworthy discoveries. Material civilization is like a lamp-glass. Divine civilization is the lamp itself and the glass without the light is dark. Material civilization is like the body. No matter how infinitely graceful, elegant and beautiful it may be, it is dead. Divine civilization is like the spirit, and the body gets its life from the spirit, otherwise it becomes a corpse. It has thus been made evident that the world of mankind is in need of the breaths of the Holy Spirit. Without the spirit the world of mankind is lifeless, and without this light the world of mankind is in utter darkness. For the world of nature is an animal world. Until man is born again from the world of nature, that is to say, becomes detached from the world of nature, he is essentially an animal, and it is the teachings of God which convert this animal into a human soul.
Posted by GWD at 11:47 AM
Monday, December 20, 2010
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Sunday, December 19, 2010
We are warned about the dangers of taking medicines that are outdated and no longer effective. Some are downright dangerous for conditions they were originally designed for to treat. If the religions of the world are medicines to the ills of humanity, could it be that beyond a certain point they too cause the opposite effect of what they were originally meant to heal?
Posted by GWD at 8:08 AM
Saturday, December 18, 2010
"Once in every week, gather ye the steadfast friends together in a meeting place, and there let them engage praising and glorifying the Lord."
--'Abdu'l-Baha, "The Importance of Obligatoy Prayer and Fasting"
Gather ye together with the utmost joy and fellowship and recite the verses revealed by the mericful Lord.
-- Baha'u'llah, quoted in "Thje importance of Deepening our Knowledge and Undrstanding of the Faith"
...all should gather together, and, harmoniously attuned one to another, engage in prayer...
--'Abdu'l-Baha, "Star of the West, May 1919"
...the holding of regular meetings for worship open to all and the involvement of Baha'i communities in projects of humanitarian service are expressions of ... a further step in the implementation of the Law of God.
-- The Universal House of Justice, "Further Application of Devotional Laws, 28 December 1999
Posted by GWD at 9:47 PM
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On iMemorize for iPhone and iPad: 5000 quotations on religion/spirituality, philosophy, historical figures & inspiration
Posted by GWD at 8:07 PM
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Tuesday, December 14, 2010
The U.S. Bahá’í Video Library contains video features produced exclusively for online distribution and intended to be easily shared via social media. ... The Video Library also contains several years’ worth of video features from the U.S. Bahá’í Newsreel, categorized by subject, as well as other specials programs, such as in memoriam videos and historical features. The videos can not only be embedded in other websites and shared on social networks, but can also be downloaded to portable media like CDs or USB flash drives
Posted via email from Baha'i Views
Posted by GWD at 8:57 AM
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Sunday, December 12, 2010
Posted by GWD at 8:54 PM
On Jamie's Appreciation of the Baha'i Month of Masa'il: A well-aimed question has been known to bring fortresses of fundamentalism crashing to the ground.
ok, George, one more month
The Baha'i month of Masa'il, my favorite attribute of gods and humans .......
Baha'u'llah Himself took seriously the questions of those sincerely looking for the truth. He wrote the Book of Certitude in response to the questions of the Bab's eldest uncle - whom Baha'u'llah told to write down all of his questions and bring them to Him. In answering this one man's questions, Baha'u'llah changed profoundly our vision of the religions we thought we knew.
As its title suggests, "Asking Questions" was written in an attempt to explore the subtle threat posed by questions to all bastions of fundamentalism. A well-aimed question has been known to bring such fortresses crashing to the ground. In the sense in which it is used in the book, fundamentalism can be seen not only as dogmatic rigidity within religious structures, but as any thought which plods blindfold around the treadmill of its own unquestioning assumptions.
Posted by GWD at 8:19 PM
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Saturday, December 11, 2010
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Friday, December 10, 2010
Posted by GWD at 7:41 AM
The essential oneness of all the myriad forms and grades of life is one of the fundamental teachings of Bahá’u’lláh. Our physical health is so linked up with our mental, moral and spiritual health, and also with the individual and social health of our fellowmen, nay, even with the life of the animals and plants, that each of these is affected by the others to a far greater extent than is usually realized. There is no command of the Prophet, therefore, to whatever department of life it may primarily refer, which does not concern bodily health.
Posted by GWD at 7:00 AM
Thursday, December 09, 2010
"I became a Baha'i at 18," he said, "and at age 22, I was appointed to this committee. I walked into the hotel room where the first meeting was to take place and there was Dorothy Baker, Sarah Pereira and Amelia Collins." All of these women were at least twice his age, if not older. "I thought I was in the wrong room," he continued. "So, I said, 'excuse me' and started to back out through the door. Before I could leave, they called me back in and said 'No, this is where you belong.'" He reported never once feeling as though these women, who each could have easily been his mother, thought he was just 21 or that he was just a new Baha'i. They interacted with him on equal footing, as peers. They didn't lower themselves to become 18. They simply spoke with him as adults.
Posted by GWD at 11:04 AM
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
On an Open Letter to the Iranian Judiciary from the Baha'i International Community: Everything your country overtly professes to seek on the world stage is contradicted by your treatment of your own people at home
The lives of these seven Bahá’ís typify not only the lives of the Bahá’ís of Iran but also those of high-minded and noble-hearted Iranians of every creed and class. They are true citizens of that nation who have striven to dedicate themselves to its service. Their birthplaces span the entire country from its capital city, to Sangsar, Yazd, Abadan, Ardestan, Mashhad, and Urumiyih. Their ages range from thirty-seven to seventy-seven. Some of them have aging parents; all of them have children, the youngest one of whom was only nine when his father was arrested. Their professional occupations are also varied and include developmental psychologist, founder of the first automated brick factory in Iran, manager of a textile factory, agricultural engineer, school principal, social worker, and optician. Alongside their professional pursuits and family duties, they have rendered, on a purely voluntary basis, distinguished service to the people of that land, as, for example, in the advancement of women, in the promotion of literacy among the country’s general population, and in the provision of the means of education for the thousands of Bahá’í youth who have been denied admission to Iranian universities since the inception of the Islamic Revolution.
The officials of the Ministry of Intelligence, resorting to many reprehensible measures illegal detention, denial of proper access to legal representation, interrogation methods that contravene standards of civilized behavior and aim to extract false confessions all of which transgress even the current law of the land, exerted every effort to build a case against them.
Our open letter dated 4 March 2009 to the Prosecutor General of the Islamic Republic of Iran established in detail the spurious character of the charges leveled against the Yaran and we commend it to your attention. An unbiased reading of that letter will confirm that there are no grounds whatsoever on which the Islamic Republic could assert that the Bahá’ís of Iran, including these seven individuals, represent the least threat to public order or to the common weal in that land.
The Bahá’ís are not “others” in your country: they are an inseparable part of the Iranian nation. The injustices meted out to them are a reflection of the terrible oppression that has engulfed the nation. Your respect now for the rights of the Iranian Bahá’ís would signal a willingness to respect the rights of all the citizens of your country. Redressing the wrongs suffered by the Bahá’ís would bring hope to the hearts of all Iranians that you are ready to ensure justice for everyone. Our call, then, is in reality a call for respect of the rights of all the Iranian people.
Posted by GWD at 2:43 PM
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Monday, December 06, 2010
Zak: Yeah, do you have jobs or something?
Crysta: What's a job?
Zak: Guess that answers that question. Look, what do you do all day?
Crysta: Help things grow.
Zak: Really? That sounds cool.
Crysta: No, usually it's warm.
Zak: No, cool means it's hot.
Zak: You know - bodacious, bad, tubular...
Batty Koda: Awesome use of the language, dude.
Zak: As in, you are one bodacious babe.
Crysta: And that's good... I mean, cool?
Zak: That's right! We're communicating.
Posted by GWD at 1:37 PM
On What Is Envisioned: Many people want to transform their community in ways that align with the Baha'i teachings
Right now, I am working in consultation with a few people who are trying to motivate their own neighbourhoods. They are making awesome strides in developing relationships. They have discovered that there are numerous people around them who want to transform their community in ways that align with the Baha'i teachings. By lovingly accepting any and all help, by introducing the idea of consultation and helping their friends focus on the spiritual issues, they are succeeding in developing this culture "in which all consider themselves as treading a common path of service".
Posted by GWD at 11:12 AM
I'm not going to tear down the holly wreaths on campus, I'm not going to bemoan the fact that there are poinsettias everywhere, and I won't complain when Christmas Carols are played nonstop. In fact, I'm not even going to make a fuss. ...
I'm a Baha'i. I celebrate Naw-Ruz, which is in March. And I don't have a problem with Christmas in the least. But I do have a problem with the fact that people seem to forget there are others out there that don't celebrate Christmas. We just had World Week at UAF. Wasn't that all about diversity? Well, where is the diversity now?
Posted by GWD at 6:53 AM
Sunday, December 05, 2010
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Saturday, December 04, 2010
Dear Friends FamilyThis Weekend I am helping organize a Technology Conference in Bangalore which is one in a series of 21 around the world that would happen simultaneously called as "Random Hacks of kindness" or RHok in short . it is a forum/space that creates a discourse between SME's [subject matter experts]from the development sector and friends from tech background so that together they can solve real world issues like disaster management/landslide/Bush fires/emergency response systems etc. more details on www.RHOK.org . attaching the details of the conference. do fwd to interested friends who may wish to participate in the hackathon at various places around the world mentioned on the site..
Posted by GWD at 11:22 AM