Saturday, February 16, 2013

On This Day a Door Is Open: Wider than both heaven and earth

This Day a door is open wider than both heaven and earth. The eye of the mercy of Him Who is the Desire of the worlds is turned towards all men. An act, however infinitesimal, is, when viewed in the mirror of the knowledge of God, mightier than a mountain. Every drop proffered in His path is as the sea in that mirror. For this is the Day which the one true God, glorified be He, hath announced in all His Books, unto His Prophets and His Messengers.

 Shoghi Effendi, The Advent of Divine Justice

The door was open at Lister Elementary School for a Friday devotional drawing together kids from the neighborhood. Participants in junior youth groups in the area did the inviting. Great turn out. -gw

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On Economics and the Baha'i Faith: A course of study

Spiritual economics -- what would the world be like if we let moral values guide our economic decisions.? Is man nothing more than an animal living only for self-interest? I think not. -gw

  A Brand New Wilmette Institute Course


Economics and the Baha'i Faith
                       March 20 - June 3, 2013 (11 weeks)

Faculty: Farhad RassekhShahruz Mohtadi, and Hooshmand Badee

*   Examine the guiding principles in the Bahá'í authoritative texts that relate to economics

*   How do Bahá'í spiritual and ethical values relate to the material aspects of life and the organization of society?
*   Study the Bahá'í approach to economic justice, work ethics, development, prosperity, globalization, and wealth redistribution
*   An excellent course to take if you are involved in certain types of public discourse 
Click here to   Learn  More About This Course     Fees     Study Schedule    Register  

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On the Sun Will Shine on All Mankind: I'm going to lay down my heavy burden

Pegah leads us in an old and much loved Baha'i gospel tune at the devotional at Lister Elementary School. Every soul present -- whether young or old, black, white or brown, whether from the Salishan, Sunrise, or Swan Creek neighborhoods -- really gets into it. Each person there is in his or her own way helping to build community on Tacoma's Eastside. -gw

"As soon as my feet strike Zion, I'm going to lay down my heavy burden, I'm going to put on my robe of glory."

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Saturday, February 09, 2013

On Teaching Is Like Breathing: Time for breath work

Teaching is like breathing. During our intensive expansion campaign, as occurs about every three months around the Baha'i world, we have a special opportunity to do "breath work," figuratively speaking -gw


On the Gift of Service: Eat, scrub, sing

During the intensive expansion campaign, Junior youth have dinner around a mysterious "boo-kay" of red roses, provided by a mysterious gifter, then they provide service, preparing the public housing townhome that is the base of operations for an announced inspection the next day. 

Work goes quicker when you whistle a little tune or sing a little song. Junior youth "git 'er done." -gw

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On Prayerbook With Him At All Times: Smart-phone fella

Isaiah last summer...

UTYA Tigers 2013 football player Isaiah Salevao is just like the rest of those forward-looking youth who read their Baha'i prayers with the help of a smart phone. Smart fella! -gw

Isaiah now...

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On the Bahá'í Gardens in the Holy Land: Viewable on Google Street View

Bonita Dannells In The Garden - Bahji

Google Alert informed me of this today. -gw

For those who haven't seen this yet, the Bahá'í Gardens in Haifa and Bahji (as well as the streets of Akka) have been added to Google Street View.

Seat of the Universal House of Justice: Google Maps
Upper Terraces: Google Maps
Lower Terraces: Google Maps
Pilgrim House (at Shrine of the Bab): Google Maps
Mansion of Bahji: Google Maps
The Most Great Prison (Akka): Google Maps
House of Abbud (Akka): Google Maps
Old Western Pilgrim House (and Seat of the Universal House of Justice 1963-83): Google Maps

On Memories of Big Mouth Billy Bass the Motion Activated Singing Sensation: Don't worry, be happy

Another reason why Bonita Dannells and I love the Thursday night home devotional at Matt and Christy is the conversation that comes after our prayers. Here we celebrate a great song, "Don't Worry, Be Happy," with its good spiritual advice, with memories of Big Mouth Billy Bass the Motion Activated Singing Sensation.

Anybody can be happy in the state of comfort, ease, health, success, pleasure and joy; but if one will be happy and contented in the time of trouble, hardship and prevailing disease, it is the proof of nobility. Thanks be to God that that dear servant of God is extremely patient under the disastrous circumstances, and in the place of complaining gives thanks.

Tablets of Abdul-Baha Abbas

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Friday, February 08, 2013

On Finding Balance: Weigh in that Balance thine actions, every day

Why is it the kid on skates is still standing, and those that aren't have fallen to their knees? Balance. -gw

Set before thine eyes God’s unerring Balance, and, as one standing in His presence, weigh in that Balance thine actions, every day, every moment of thy life. Bring thyself to account ere thou art summoned to a reckoning, on the Day when no man shall have strength to stand for fear of God, the Day when the hearts of the heedless ones shall be made to tremble.

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Monday, February 04, 2013

On Growing the Core Activities: Crazy arm-in-arm

To grow the core activities and take another step closer towards spiritual transformation of the planet, it takes A LOT of this ..

and this ...

and this ...

to get to this ...

and this ...

and this ...

and MOST DEFINITELY this ... 

and this. -gw

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Sunday, February 03, 2013

On Articulate Junior Youth Epitomizes Our Progress: All voices honored at Cluster Reflection Meeting

Alex was an inspiration to young and old at the reflection meeting last Saturday. Here he describes his the junior youth group's activities of his group.

Here's another junior youth summarizing her experience at the cluster meeting. 

Adults had a voice, too, at the meeting. Here Albert brings up the importance of consistency and regularity when hosting devotionals. -gw

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On At Our Cluster Reflection Meeting: Joy gave us wings

Last weekend we had an amazing Cluster Reflection Meeting to inspire us and draw us together for our 16 day-intensive expansion campaign. I didn't get a lot of photos taken, but loved the chance to share photos of radiant souls, my Three years of making friends set on the slick big screen TV they had at the library where we gathered.  There were many delightful contributions made to the evening.

In the key of D, accompaniment by a quiet Norwegian American on ukelele, dancing by little Luna.... - gw

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On Youth-oriented Music: To build community by

As I drive with junior youth in the car, as I did today, I always have music on.. Something with a hip-hop beat speaks to youth.  Here are some great tracks to add to my mix, out of The Netherlands, to build community by. -gw

Community Compass is a musical project by three youth who, along with many others, share the mission of community building.