Community and administration

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

Baha'i, a religion without dogma


A celebration in Bogota. Photo: Nestor Gomez / TIME

Its practitioners do not have rituals or authorities and seek the unity of all religions to achieve world peace.

They have no dogmas or rituals. Neither priests or pastors. Not governed by hierarchies and do not worship sacred images. They do not recruit souls to its fold or wear outlandish costumes.

{josquote}Zulay Posada acknowledged that if a homosexual comes to their community, to give an example, he will be received without compunction.{/josquote}

They are practitioners of the Baha'i faith, a monotheistic religion -- 150 years young -- considered one of the fastest growing faiths in the world and about which little is known in Colombia.

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Customers: irrational sheep or intelligent strangers?

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On the Web the best way to think of your customers is as intelligent strangers whose most precious resource is their time.

In Ireland, the Catholic Church is facing a crisis of trust and confidence. For much too long Irish people have placed a blind faith in the Church, as they have placed a blind faith in the medical, political, educational and banking establishments. As a result, members of these establishments have nothing but contempt for their flock of blind sheep.

Dealing with the medical establishment in Ireland requires great humility. Oh esteemed medical consultant, I am not worthy of paying you this very high fee. And what do you often get for your very high fee? A great deal of incompetence.

I remember telling a banker a couple of years ago that I was moving my account to another bank because they had a better rate. She was shocked. How dare I do such a thing? Did I not feel privileged and deeply indebted to her bank for actually accepting me as a customer?

{josquote}The Catholic Church is struggling globally because it reflects a pre-Web organization structure and mindset.{/josquote}

The Catholic Church is struggling globally because it reflects a pre-Web organization structure and mindset. This mindset is hierarchical, rigid and secret. It expects obedience. It does not like being questioned.

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Not Interested

{josquote} We’ve moved on; we have better things to do. We’re not interested.{/josquote}

Do Unitarian Bahais support or oppose the organization that most Bahais belong to, the Haifa-based Baha’i Faith? To understand the answer to this question, a brief history lesson would be helpful.

During the 1980s and 90s, a number of liberal Bahais argued for reform of organized Bahaism. At first, they tried to work within the Haifan organization to promote some modest changes to make the Bahai community and its leadership more open and democratic. After the people who tried to do this were censored by Bahai leaders, another attempt was made in the form of a free-thinking online Bahai discussion list. Official Bahai institutions reacted to this by forcing the moderators of the discussion list to resign their membership in the Baha’i Faith organization, on pain of shunning if they refused to resign. One of those forced to resign was Dr. Juan Cole, Professor of Middle Eastern History at the University of Michigan, who has since become a Unitarian Universalist.

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Universal House of Justice: Results of By-Election

The Universal House of Justice held a by-election a few days ago and two new members were elected to replace the retiring members: Hooper Dunbar and Peter Khan. The new members were, surprise! both members of the International Teaching Center: Stephen Birkland and Stephen Hall.

. . .

To help you visualize the data, here is an update infographic showing the complete history of the membership of the Universal House of Justice:

Membership of the UHJ

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NSA of Canada Funds Report For 2009

{josquote}In either case, the key word here is mistake and somewhere, someone made either one or several.{/josquote}

Sunlight is the best disinfectant so let’s see if we can allow some to fall onto a topic rather dank and musty for most Baha’is. The National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of Canada has submitted their tax returns to the government of Canada and since this information is in turn public, let’s take a look to see what we can learn about how the NSA is spending the funds donated to them.

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