Individuals and groups

Individuals and groups whose story doesn't fit into any other category.

I am Lost O Love


Night of the June Rose Moon (c) WH

We are sold and truly we are homeless (we have yet to buy a house to move into) though nameless and traceless we are not. In this day and age, the bank needs to know our whereabouts as well as a hundred others who wish to keep track of us; family, friends and doctors.

..." I am lost, O Love, possessed and dazed,
Love's fool am I, in all the earth.
They call me first among the crazed,
Though I once came first for wit and worth..."
- Rumi -

Do you think Rumi knew anything about selling the home you are in and NOT having a new home to move into? I'm sure our friends think us 'first among the crazed' at this moment.

I leave behind 25 years spent in the city as I head for a 'toned down village' with more peace and quiet.

Full story...

Gambler loses, sues casino


Barred gambler...Behrouz Foroughi played at StarCity 65 times despite being on the casino's exclusion list, a court has heard.

A "PATHOLOGICAL gambler" who lost more than $600,000 playing roulette at Star City casino after he begged management to keep him away now wants his money back.

Iranian refugee Behrouz Foroughi, 43, volunteered to go on an "exclusion list" of problem gamblers to bar him from the gaming floor.

It emerged yesterday that Mr Foroughi was just one of 5746 names on Star City's exclusion list.

Mr Foroughi's lawyer Greg Laughton SC told the Federal Court in Sydney the casino had failed in its duty of care after his client informed staff of his gambling problem.

He said Mr Foroughi, a painter and decorator who never sought counselling for his problem, went to Star City staff after losing more than $27,000 in just two days in May 2004.

Within three weeks, Mr Foroughi returned to the casino and blew another $21,000.

{josquote}The court heard Mr Foroughi was persecuted in Iran because he was of the Baha'i faith.{/josquote}

He claims that despite being told he would be refused entry, he was able to return 65 times and was even offered access to the high rollers' room.

Mr Foroughi agreed under cross examination that he found gambling exciting and that he spent his winnings on dinner parties and sex with prostitutes.

Full story...

Lakota woman elected to head U.S. Baha'is' national assembly

Jacqueline Left Hand Bull-Delahunt has been chosen as the first American Indian woman to head the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of the United States.

Left Hand Bull-Delahunt, a member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, was brought up by traditional Lakota grandparents and parents. She became a member of the Baha'is more than 20 years ago.

The change to the Baha'is was not a large leap for Left Hand Bull-Delahunt. The spirituality is very similar to that of her Lakota upbringing, she said.

''I knew about the beauty and power of our traditional ways and the Catholic Church could not accommodate them,'' she said. ''I was always a little bit confused. Then I heard about the Baha'i faith.''

{josquote}She will have to meet with the members of the National Spiritual Assembly, who she said are very intelligent and have very strong views, to consult and to come to a unified view.{/josquote}

Left Hand Bull-Delahunt was elected at the annual National Spiritual Assembly gathering in Wilmette, Ill. She had served as vice chairman of the organization, and also served on the National Spiritual Assembly. She traveled the globe meeting with indigenous peoples in South and Central America and in Canada; she also visited the former Soviet Union.

Full story...

What We Believe: The Bahai Faith


Bahai faithful gather at a private home in Poway to celebrate the Declaration of the Bab, an important holiday in the Bahai religion. John Izadpanah takes his turn reading from the story of the Bab.

Escondido resident Russ Norman came to the Bahai faith in an unusual way. It all started in 1969, he said, when he was getting ready to go to the Woodstock Festival and visited his favorite bookstore in New York City's Greenwich Village. As he reached for a book on a very high shelf, he recalled, a booklet fell to the floor, facing down. When he turned it over, he saw "The Hidden Words," and the word "Bahai" written below it. He offered to buy it for 25 cents, but the bookstore owner gave it to him.

Off to Woodstock (about 150 miles north of the city) Norman went, getting there two days early (later being unable to locate his car for a week). "When I was awake, I would read this book," he said, "that is, when someone wasn't kicking me or throwing up on me ... but when it rained, everything was lost in the mud, including the book. It became hidden again."

{josquote}Baha'u'llah set up an administrative order and established the elected Universal House of Justice, which today still handles the administration of the Bahai faith.{/josquote}

It stayed hidden until 1996, until Norman went to his mailbox and found a postcard with "The Golden Rule" listed in different faiths. "I felt like I was hit by lightning," he said.

On the back of the postcard, the first six basic principles were printed, with the suggestion: "If you believe in these, you may be interested in learning more about the Bahai Faith."

Full story...

Tod Mikuriya -- psychiatrist, medical marijuana advocate


Tod H. Mikuriya, M.D.

Tod H. Mikuriya, a Berkeley psychiatrist who helped draft California's medical marijuana law, died at his home Sunday of complications of cancer. He was 73.

Dr. Mikuriya was a well-known medical marijuana advocate whose practice made him the physician of last resort for patients throughout California who said marijuana eases their suffering.

He was the founder of the Society of Cannabis Clinicians and an architect of Proposition 215, the initiative approved in 1996 by state voters that legalized growing and using marijuana for medical purposes with a doctor's recommendation.

In 2003, Dr. Mikuriya was investigated by the Medical Board of California on allegations of unprofessional conduct and negligence in his handling of 16 cases since 1998. Supporters said the case was politically motivated and payback for his vocal support of medical marijuana.

{josquote}People didn't really appreciate that Tod was not just all about pot{/josquote}

The state placed him on probation, but Dr. Mikuriya appealed and continued to practice. "If his health hadn't failed, he would have appealed (to a state appeals court)," friend Fred Gardner said Monday.

"It didn't affect his practice, it just affected his pride," Gardner said of the Medical Board's ruling. "It hurt him that he was considered anything but a great doctor going by the book."

Dr. Mikuriya was born in Pennsylvania in 1933 to Anna Schwenk, a German immigrant and practicing Baha'i, and Tadafumi Mikuriya, a Japanese samurai who converted to Christianity. He received a Quaker education at George School and Haverford College before graduating from Reed College and serving as a medic in the Army. He attended Temple University School of Medicine, where he saw a reference in a pharmacology text to the medical uses of marijuana.

Full story...