Community and administration

Entries about Baha'i community life, about Baha'i administration, and about how the two intersect.

Baha’is Elect New National Spiritual Assembly Members

One interesting note is from the official US Baha’i Unit Convention site which tells us that less than 25% of eligible voters participate in these important elections

With Ridvan comes the National Baha’i Conventions as Baha’is everywhere around the world elect their new National Spiritual Members. Due to a systematic incumbency bias, the “new” NSA’s are more than likely exactly the same as the “old” NSA. That certainly is the case in North America.

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Bring the Justices Back to Earth

Given the very real possibility that the Supreme Court will overturn the Affordable Care Act, liberals are concerned that the right-wing tilt of five justices and lifelong appointments ensure a decades-long assault on the power of Congress. This is especially likely given the relative youth of the bloc’s conservative members: an average of 66 years old, when the last 10 justices to retire did so at an average age of 78.

The situation brings to mind a proposal voiced most prominently by Gov. Rick Perry during his run for the Republican presidential nomination: judicial term limits.

The idea isn’t new. High-ranking judges in all major nations, and all 50 states, are subject to age or term limits. The power to invalidate legislation is, in a sense, the ultimate political power, and mortals who exercise it need constraint. So why not the highest court in the land?

One reason sometimes given is that Congress could not enact strict limits without amending Article III of the Constitution, which provides that justices hold office for the period of their “good behavior.” Long lives were uncommon in 1788, so the issue of prolonged service was not considered by the framers.

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Hossain B. Danesh Seminar on Baha’i Marriage and Family

Hossain Danesh

It is deeply troubling to see the National Assembly of Canada continue to promote Hossain B. Danesh. He is provided with official Baha’i venues, promoted through official channels and presented as a leading figure to the community in the very field from which he was expelled because of sexual misconduct towards his patients.

To those unfamiliar with the history, Hossain Danesh was a psychiatrist practicing in Canada as well as a long time member of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of Canada from the 1980′s to early 1990′s. He was Secretary General of the NSA for many of those years.

Multiple patients brought charges of sexual misconduct against Hossain Banadaki Danesh. The result of the investigation and procedure was that in 1994 the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons along with Hossain Danesh and the victims came to an out of court agreement. This agreement resulted in Danesh being stripped of his membership in that organization as well as losing his legal rights to practice as a psychiatrist and the forfeiting of any future application for re-entry into same. As well, Danesh agreed to pay $10,000 towards the costs of therapy for the three former patients. Danesh did not admit to any of the charges as part of the out of court settlement, which is normal for these sorts of things.

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Some days are diamonds…


Ever had one when you KNOW you should have stayed in bed feigning a life -threatening disease?

Welcome to Friday.

Due to circumstances beyond my control (I forgot the time) I arrived at Unley Community Centre only an hour late for the African-themed Harmony Day party. Which would in itself not have been disastrous if it were not for the fact I should have been at Goodwood Community Centre.

{josquote}And the arrival (ticket in hand) of an apologetic personage from the Bahai community{/josquote}

Arriving at the above-mentioned GCC I noticed a distinct lack of brown faces, and assumed we were talking white South Africans. WRONG.WRONG.WRONG. I was at the wrong hall at the wrong time for the wrong celebration. No wonder the kind lady at the door was confused when I could not produce a $15 ticket and substantiate my claim to be a guest of (who? she asked) Unley Mayor Lachlan Clyne.

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Universal House of Fear

{josquote}This article explores the idea that the UHJ may be degenerating into a weak Universal House of Fear at a time when the Baha'i community needs strong leadership.{/josquote}

Baha'u'llah, founder of the Baha'i Faith in 1863, stated "The essence of all that We have revealed for thee is Justice" and designed a "new world order" including a world-wide system of elected, nine-member bodies at the local, national and international levels, with the top-most body named The Universal House of Justice (UHJ), first elected a century later in 1963. Many assumed that Baha'u'llah and his UHJ crowning a developing Baha'i Administration may eventually fulfill various messianic prophesies such as "the Kingdom of God" on earth, that the meek shall inherit the earth and the like. However, in subsequent decades, most notably in the 1980s, a growing number of Baha'is began to perceive that various corrupt practices were permeating the Baha'i Administration on all levels. This article explores the idea that the UHJ may be degenerating into a weak Universal House of Fear at a time when the Baha'i community needs strong leadership.

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