Thursday, May 30, 2013

On Ethereal, Subtle Harmonies: New Sky music video

New video from Sky. What ethereal, subtle harmonies! -gw

Sleep had departed from me that night. I was enthralled by the music of that voice which rose and fell as He chanted; now swelling forth as He revealed verses of the Qayyúmu’l-Asmá, again acquiring ethereal, subtle harmonies as He uttered the prayers He was revealing. At the end of each invocation, He would repeat this verse: ‘Far from the glory of thy Lord, the All-Glorious, be that which His creatures affirm of Him! And peace be upon His Messengers! And praise be to God, the Lord of all beings!’ 
God Passes By Author: Shoghi Effendi

On Plunging Into Lyrics: U2

This site is dedicated to U2 and their fans all around the world, who are hoping for and working toward a world of dignity and equity and genuine love for everyone in it.

I feel such kinship with those who plunge into lyrics. -gw
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Every good lyricist speaks to many hearts, and the best lyrics reach listeners on many levels. Sacred writings do the same. The U2 songs below are multidimensional, as are the quotes. The connections between them are, perhaps, like the same notes from different instruments, or notes in harmony on the same instrument. In some cases, the quotes reflect meaning in part of a song, in other cases an entire song.

On Feasting in Unity: Away from city noise

When I return, it is my wish to give a large feast of unity. ... It must be outdoors under the trees, in some location away from city noise — like a Persian garden.
The Promulgation of Universal Peace

Picnic at the Peshastin Pinnacles

Ours was not a large feast, but a picnic, away from city noise. -gw

Slideshow: Picnic at the Peshastin Pinnacles

On Fire As a Good Thing: He hath therefore kindled with the mystic hand that Fire that dieth not


When is fire a good thing? When it's used as a natural process to maintain overall ecosystem health. And tree thinning contributes to the health of the unerstory. -gw

And since He hath ordained heat to be the source of motion and ascent and the cause of attainment to the desired goal, He hath therefore kindled with the mystic hand that Fire that dieth not and sent it forth into the world, that this divine Fire might, by the heat of the love of God, guide and attract all mankind to the abode of the incomparable Friend.

The Tabernacle of Unity, by Bahá’u’lláh


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

On Journeys in the Pathway of Love: Between the True One and His creatures

From the creatures to the creatures 
The journeys in the pathway of love are reckoned as four: From the creatures to the True One; from the True One to the creatures; from the creatures to the creatures; from the True One to the True One.

When canoeing, encountering creatures of all kinds -- critters, we are more likely to call them -- is a great source of delight. We are all God's creatures. As human creatures, we know that. What do eagles know? -gw




On From an Adorned and Thickly Planted Grove: Canoeing Cassimer Bar

An aspen-y lookAspen grove

O Lord! O Lord! Send unto him a gentle breeze from the garden of Thy sanctity in Thy Kingdom of Abha, so that he may be refreshed and developed as a flourishing branch in that adorned and thickly planted grove. 
Tablets of Abdul-Baha Abbas

The breeze was gentle to non-existent when we canoed the Cassimer Bar at Brewster, Washington, which contributed to beautiful reflections in the water. We parked the van in front of the grove of trees above at the start, and returned to admire its beauty upon our return. -gw


Canoeing Cassimer Bar

Friday, May 17, 2013

On Shaping a Pattern of Life Distinguished For It's Devotional Character: In Tacoma

Thousands upon thousands of Bahá'ís, embracing the diversity of the entire human family, are engaged in certain core activities. These activities promote the systematic study of the Bahá’í Writings in small groups in order to build capacity for service. They respond to the inmost longing of every heart to commune with its Maker by carrying out acts of collective worship in diverse settings, uniting with others in prayer, awakening spiritual susceptibilities, and shaping a pattern of life distinguished for its devotional character.

The rhythm of our Baha'i life -- a home-devotional Monday nights at Amanda's and Thursday night at Matt & Christy's -- rain or shine -- and any other devotionals we can slip in in the course of the week. -gw


Thursday, May 16, 2013

On Baha'i-Inspired Post-Punk: Radiant Devices

My taste in music has evolved. I want Baha'i-inspired, yes, but I want something post-punk/industrial, too.  The solution -- Radiant Devices, coming out momentarily with a brand new album. Here is their 2011 EP while we wait. -gw +

CHICAGO POETRY: "»radiant devices« take to the stage and, wow! They use found objects, including a satellite dish, a chain, a gas tank, a big piece of sheet metal and a thick spring as musical instruments to compliment their off the wall, punk-rock poetry performance art. When I think of Mojdeh performing her poetry into a bullhorn I think of a female Jello Biafra."!__page-1/page-5

On Every Hair of Our Heads: Proclaims the oneness of God and His creation


My homage to the variety of different hair styles, colors, textures that grace the heads of humans -- my "Ode to Hair" set on Flickr -- is approaching 3000 views. -gw

Glorified art Thou, O Lord my God! My tongue, both the tongue of my body and the tongue of my heart, my limbs and members, every pulsating vein within me, every hair of my head, all proclaim that Thou art God, and that there is none other God beside Thee. From everlasting Thou hast been immeasurably exalted above all similitudes and comparisons, and sanctified from whatsoever pertaineth to the creation Thou hast created and fashioned. From eternity Thou hast been alone, with none to share the majesty of Thy singleness, and hast remained far above the changes and chances to which all Thy creatures are subjected.

Prayers and Meditations by Bahá’u’lláh

On Though Small in Numbers: The Force energizes your mission



The friends gather in Apartment 35 each morning and night. It is Mission Central for the expansion phase. -gw

Though small in numbers, and circumscribed as yet in your experiences, powers, and resources, yet the Force which energizes your mission is limitless in its range and incalculable in its potency.

The Advent of Divine Justice
by Shoghi Effendi

On Parents Who Are Supported and Valued By Society: They give rise to mentally healthy children

Here is a record in photos and videos of one recent Baha'i expansion phase in our cluster. -gw

Crazy arm-in arm

Crazy arm-inarm

18 photos | Edit

On Memories of Our Earthly Existence: How vast a panorama!

Taráz took footage of our family on vacation last summer and turned it into something ethereal and moving. -gw

Dear friends! How vast a panorama these gemlike, these soul-searching divinely uttered pronouncements outspread before our eyes! What memories they evoke! How sublime the principles they inculcate! What hopes they engender! What apprehensions they excite! And yet how fragmentary must these above-quoted words, suited as they are to the immediate purpose of my theme, appear when compared with the torrential majesty which only the reading of the full text can disclose! He Who was God’s Vicar on earth, addressing, at the most critical moment when His Revelation was attaining its zenith, those who concentrated in their persons the splendor, the sovereignty, and the strength of earthly dominion, could certainly not subtract one jot or tittle from the weight and force which the presentation of so historic a Message demanded.
The Promised Day Is Come, by Shoghi Effendi

In Four Corners of the World: Communities on the frontiers of learning

HAIFA, Israel — A documentary film about the efforts of Baha'i communities in four locations around the world has been released on the World Wide Web. The film, titled Frontiers of Learning, explores processes of community development under way in thousands of localities worldwide by presenting four case studies from four continents: the northern part of the Bolivar region in Colombia; the city of Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of the Congo; the city of Toronto, Canada; and the town of Bihar Sharif and surrounding areas in Bihar state, India. ... Frontiers of Learning was first shown earlier this week at the 11th International Baha'i Convention. It is available to download and view online here.
New film explores community-building throughout the world

The process portrayed in this film is being replicated in our community of Tacoma as well. -gw


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

On When a Garden Forms a Harmonious Whole: Thank the perfect gardener


A community garden is a ... community. A place to hang-out, share stories, drink in the sun, and nurture relationships. God knows there are plenty of metaphors to draw on in such a place to turn an ordinary conversation into a spiritual conversation. There are 556 separate references within the Baha'i primary literature to "garden." -gw



And when you pass by a garden wherein vegetable beds and plants, flowers and fragrant herbs are all combined so as to form a harmonious whole, this is an evidence that this plantation and this rose garden have been cultivated and arranged by the care of a perfect gardener, while when you see a garden in disorder, lacking arrangement and confused, this indicates that it has been deprived of the care of a skillful gardener, nay, rather, it is nothing but a mass of weeds. It has therefore been made evident that fellowship and harmony are indicative of the training by the real Educator, while separation and dispersion prove wildness and deprivation of Divine training.
Abdu'l-Baha, Baha'i World Faith

On the First Canoe Paddle of the Year: Back to nature

Our first canoe paddle of this year came in May. Our first paddle of 2011 came in February. The difference? Ruhi Book 8. As much as Bonita loves the deep spiritual connections that she gets out in nature, she chose to spend Sundays from 9:30 to 1:30 studying the latest book in the Ruhi series with a dozen dear souls partaking of its spiritual sustenance. The study circle wrapped things up this month, having begun so many months ago in the depths of winter. Back to nature -gw


Tuesday, May 14, 2013

On Youth Sports For Combating Negative Social Forces: Plus four more ingredients

An empowered community CAN combat negative social forces, in the ways outlined on this poster above, and through what is illustrated photographically here below -- youth sports. -gw