OVERCOMING THE CHAOS OF INTELLECTUAL DIVERSITY

All research or scholarship questions
majnun
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hint

Postby majnun » Sun Nov 12, 2006 12:36 am

Dear Richard:

Happyness and being on the way,
is not that complicated.

Majnun

majnun
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it's like a spaghetti

Postby majnun » Sun Nov 12, 2006 3:00 pm

It seems you have the malady
the messengers try to heal, but
in your case, it is enhenced by an hyper-intellectualisation.

Ovbiously you do not read the Baha'i remedies,
and it shows. We friends cannot undo the
mental spaghetti that drives your mind.

I offer you my sympathy,
Majnun

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Sun Nov 12, 2006 8:04 pm

Ovbiously you do not read the Baha'i remedies,
and it shows. We friends cannot undo the
mental spaghetti that drives your mind.


Before this becomes even more ugly, I am giving you yet another warning Majnun. Personal attacks are not welcome here, especially by your implying to be a Baha'i while doing so.

Although it is not comparable to this, I might also add that in the other thread, BW, please do tone it down a bit with Abbas. It's fine (and appreciated) to offer points and counterpoints, but we don't need to force anything. It can be just as productive, and moreso without doing so.

best wishes,
Brett

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Postby brettz9 » Sun Nov 12, 2006 8:30 pm

And to add to my last posting...

Given your pattern of behavior at this website, Majnun, if you do not respect the policies of this board, you will be permanently banned from this forum.

Brett

Baha'i Warrior
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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Mon Nov 13, 2006 11:10 am

brettz9 wrote:Although it is not comparable to this, I might also add that in the other thread, BW, please do tone it down a bit with Abbas. It's fine (and appreciated) to offer points and counterpoints, but we don't need to force anything. It can be just as productive, and moreso without doing so.


I agree Brett. In fact I mentioned in another thread that I didn't want to continue the back-and-forth, never-ending discussion. Please feel free to delete any of my posts that you might consider to be too "forceful," for lack of a better term. Or I can delete them or tone them down if you tell me specifically which specific ones you are referring to.

All the best.

Baha'i Warrior
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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Mon Nov 13, 2006 11:16 am

Brett,

Just to let you know, I went ahead and deleted my last reply (and noted it) in the "Symbolic = Confusion????" thread since I'm pretty sure you were referring to that one. Thanks again for letting me know.

—BW

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Postby brettz9 » Mon Nov 13, 2006 12:38 pm

Glad to hear you were open to it. I don't think there's any need to go back over anything. You weren't insulting anybody.

take care,
Brett

p.s. Not rehashing points may also help others on the forum follow the thread better and have a chance to obtain more contributions. But, your persistence in offering replies to new questions is I think most welcome, as it seems Abbas was saying earlier as well (though don't let it take you away too much from your studies either!).

majnun
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think

Postby majnun » Mon Nov 13, 2006 9:51 pm

yes Richard, you like to write and
think a lot, i know that, and that is what
I blame you for, you think too much.
Read the writings, it could calm you down a bit.

Majnun

FruccalFrilia
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Postby FruccalFrilia » Mon Nov 13, 2006 11:05 pm

Majnun, over intellectualism is what richard is helping us guard against. The fable he quoted warned against theological dispute and the excerpt giving guidance from Jesus demonstrated perfectly how to share spiritual truth. (Both from separate threads) Dont want to see you get banned if its a misunderstanding. Perhaps the points you wish to make could be put in a more lighthearted way.

majnun
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come with us

Postby majnun » Mon Nov 13, 2006 11:11 pm

Instead of typing, why dont
you and Richard join us, we
have a baha'i chatroom on Paltalk.

Majnun

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high class talks

Postby majnun » Tue Nov 14, 2006 11:48 pm

Dear Bretzz, is your censorship fiber still
that sensible ? I know Richard from almost
a year now, i know what he reads, how he
express his ideas, and that he owns a Ford (poor guy !),
and many personal things I wont tell you.

So, when I say to him, hey Richard, you talk too much,
I know he is not insulted at all.

As for you dear Bretz, you should not play redneck and
think you are a watch-dog in here, in the name of your
own narrow-minded personality. So Dear Bretz,
mind your own business. Are you a sissy or a man ?

Majnun.

Note from moderator: see my response below: http://bahai-library.com/forum2/viewtop ... =6561#6567 . -J.W.]

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Postby brettz9 » Wed Nov 15, 2006 2:23 am

As far as I'm concerned, you can add any insults you wish about me, but not about others on this board.

As you well know, you are more than free to politely express your opinions to others here, but Jonah as well as I do not want to see this board degenerate into permitting the rampant coarseness of other online forums. If you are posting public messages to this board (or even private messages were we to receive complaints), then I would say that is in fact our business.

Of course, you will try to cast me as a zealous censor, but your history of discussion on this board is available for anyone to browse. Of course the public record doesn't include such private messages as you sent to me (and perhaps others) insulting the Universal House of Justice members and their policies, but at least your tone is clear. I do not intend to engage you further on this.

Brett
-as moderator

Jonah
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Postby Jonah » Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:10 am

Dear Majnun,

Earlier this year Brett and I emailed you, privately, about keeping a civil tone on this board. A couple days ago he warned you publicly, and you responded publicly, so my response will also be public. I'm placing your account on a 1-week temporary suspension. Please email or pm me if you're ready to join us again at the end of that week.

I hope you understand my action. I believe we've expressed our reasoning, and have given you sufficient warning.

-Jonah

Sean H.
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green meme / Jean Gebser's book "The Ever-Present Origi

Postby Sean H. » Fri Nov 17, 2006 3:13 am

Majnun,

We live in a complex world, not premodern tribal life. Simply trying to understand Baha'i scripture, with its esoteric sufi/metaphysical motifs, at least in a holistic manner, would take most people several lifetimes.

The idea that a "real" global civilization can be cooked up easily is bizarre.

Jean Gebser's book "The Ever-Present Origin", and other work, might be worth checking out.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Gebser

The title "Ever-Present Origin" of course is meant to juxtapose transcendance/spirituality with emergence/evolution.

Mystics have of course always known that time is not linear, indeed the idea that time is linear is a contruct of the paradigm of modernism (science/rationalism).

Gebser was an early pioneer in the area of Integral theories of consciousness, which explain the evolutionary and systems aspects of "paradigm shifts", which is basically a "real world" approach to understanding social change from a perspective that Baha'is would probably characterize as being consistent with the principle of the "harmony of science and religion". Gebser was interested in "eastern religion", and how the universal archetypes in such belief systems could be used to understand the unfoldment of new paradigms in human consciousness.

I think that what Gebser was describing was the end of the paradigm of "modernity", and the beginning of the paradigm of "postmodernity".

It is quite stunning that the long-term implications (civil rights movement, feminism, pluralism/relativism, etc.) of the huge social changes that occured in the 1950s/60s were so clearly described by Gebser a decade earlier.

More abstractly, what Gebser's work does, as is this case with more recent forms of Integralism (Ken Wilber, Spiral Dynamics), is to to legitimize "transcendance" in the context of western intellectual/scientific life.

To Integralists, the failures of both modernity (science/rationalism/capitalism) and postmodernity (relativism/pluralism/multiculturalism) lead not to despair and hopelessness, but to a belief that "something better" is possible and inevitable.

Baha'i culture, at present, is highly influenced by the "feel good" narcicissm of postmodernity. Postmodernists will engage in "inquisitorial" behavior (thought policing) against any form of expression that is considered "potentially offensive" to some "victimized" social group.

In general, violation of any group norm that is oriented towards "feel good" warm-fuzzy stuff (including premodern mythic structures that are "re-animated" in a religious subculture) will become "intolerant in the name of tolerance", "un-diverse in the name of diversity", and so forth.

The Universal House of Justice, addressing the "culture wars" of the 1990s in academia, told Baha'i scholars to adopt integral paradigms instead of rehashing old battles over "liberal vs. conservative" ideologies.

Instead of retreating from despair and hoplessness (that is pervasive in the world as a result of the collapse of the paradigms of modernism and postmodernism) into a cave of premodern archetypes and images, Baha'is should embrace the future, and try to see how spirituality is rapidly becoming seen as "evolutionary" by leading thinkers in the world.

Regards,
Eric
Sacramento

ps, if you are being clever and spoofing everyone on this forum by posing as a simpleton and buffoon as a joke, you already know to disregard all of the above.

http://www.amazon.com/Integral-Spiritua ... 94-1049617

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Re: green meme / Jean Gebser's book "The Ever-Present O

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Fri Nov 17, 2006 8:23 am

epierce wrote:Baha'i culture, at present, is highly influenced by the "feel good" narcicissm of postmodernity. Postmodernists will engage in "inquisitorial" behavior (thought policing) against any form of expression that is considered "potentially offensive" to some "victimized" social group.

In general, violation of any group norm that is oriented towards "feel good" warm-fuzzy stuff (including premodern mythic structures that are "re-animated" in a religious subculture) will become "intolerant in the name of tolerance", "un-diverse in the name of diversity", and so forth.

The Universal House of Justice, addressing the "culture wars" of the 1990s in academia, told Baha'i scholars to adopt integral paradigms instead of rehashing old battles over "liberal vs. conservative" ideologies.

Instead of retreating from despair and hoplessness (that is pervasive in the world as a result of the collapse of the paradigms of modernism and postmodernism) into a cave of premodern archetypes and images, Baha'is should embrace the future, and try to see how spirituality is rapidly becoming seen as "evolutionary" by leading thinkers in the world.


What significance does it have at all that the "leading thinkers in the world" see spirituality as "evolutionary"? The Baha'i Faith isn't a religion where you customize it for your own personal needs. It isn't a Dell computer. It is a religion sent by God.

First, one determines for himself: is Baha'u'llah sent by God? If the answer is yes, then he accepts that His teachings are infallible, and that if the UHJ was appointed to lead the Baha'i world, that whatever they decide is likewise of God. If Baha'is and Baha'i scholars were allowed to all be libertines, then there would be total anarchy (disunity).

Sean H.
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Re: green meme / Jean Gebser's book "The Ever-Present O

Postby Sean H. » Sat Nov 18, 2006 1:14 pm

Baha'i Warrior wrote:
What significance does it have at all that the "leading thinkers in the world" see spirituality as "evolutionary"?



0) it is a potentially interesting route to understanding the "harmony of science and religion".

1) It was guidance from the Universal House of Justice.

2) It is an antidote to insularized narrow-mindedness, rigidity, orthodoxy, fundamentalism, literalism, primitivism, etc.

3) Following #2 above: the Guardian stated (paraphrasing) that Baha'is should stay current on the leading edge of philosophy and science. (I'll post the exact quote later, please remind me if I forget).

In other words, learn how to effectively apply Baha'i principles in the context of social change. The reality is that generally there is very little
(and even less "effective" specific), Baha'i thinking on social change that is tied into real work, practical things being done, etc.

Baha'is are, generally, being left in the dust, and mostly don't even know why.

Of course anyone that has seen Baha'i culture operate over the long run knows that many people with rigid, narrow mindests will ignore all of the above and "customize" Baha'is ideas to reinforce their fundamentalist tendencies and missionary inclinations and use them to attack more open-minded people, non-conformists, reformers, and so forth.


Baha'i Warrior wrote:
The Baha'i Faith isn't a religion where you customize it for your own personal needs. It isn't a Dell computer. It is a religion sent by God.


Again, this is typically a formula for literalism, rigidity, dogmatic orthodoxy, fundamentalism, etc.

The world already has a wide variety of ignorant, narrow-minded and backward interpretations of religion, does it really need another one?

I would say "no".


Baha'i Warrior wrote:
First, one determines for himself: is Baha'u'llah sent by God? If the answer is yes, then he accepts that His teachings are infallible, and that if the UHJ was appointed to lead the Baha'i world, that whatever they decide is likewise of God. If Baha'is and Baha'i scholars were allowed to all be libertines, then there would be total anarchy (disunity).


There is of course a wide spectrum of possibilities between the extreme of "anarchy" on one side and rigidity, insularization, and fundamentalism on the other.

Integralism actually isn't even "on the spectrum" per se, it atempts to transcend the spectrum, and proposes and alternate model of human consciousness that stops the "warring" between ideological camps.

It is unfortunate that hostile expressions of intellectual conformism have such a grip on the minds of so many people in the Baha'i community that they can't even consider the benefit of following the guidance of the Universal House of Justice itself ("to contribute to integrative paradigms")!

The extent of the presence of anti-intellectual, conformist tendencies in the mainstream of Baha'i culture is the primary "fact" that will lead insightful investigators to the conclusion that the dominant form of Baha'i culture is deeply dysfunctional at present, and severely in need of reform (openness to new paradigms).

Regards,
Eric

Sean H.
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Guardian's letter prohibiting dogmatism/fanaticism

Postby Sean H. » Sun Nov 19, 2006 12:14 pm

http://bahai-library.org/uhj/science.re ... l#extracts

It is hoped that all the Baha'i students will ... be led to investigate and analyse the principles of the Faith and to correlate them with the modern aspects of philosophy and science. Every intelligent and thoughtful young Baha'i should always approach the Cause in this way, for therein lies the very essence of the principle of independent investigation of truth.
(6 August 1933, on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer) [6]

Shoghi Effendi has for years urged the Baha'is (who asked his advice, and in general also) to study history, economics, sociology, etc., in order to be au courant with all the progressive movements and thoughts being put forth today, and so that they could correlate these to the Baha'i teachings. What he wants the Baha'is to do is to study more, not to study less. The more general knowledge, scientific and otherwise, they possess, the better. Likewise he is constantly urging them to really study the Baha'i teachings more deeply. One might liken Baha'u'llah's teachings to a sphere; there are points poles apart, and in between the thoughts and doctrines that unite them. We believe in balance in all things; we believe in moderation in all things -- we must not be too emotional, nor cut and dried and lacking in feeling, we must not be so liberal as to cease to preserve the character and unity of our Baha'i system, nor fanatical and dogmatic.
(5 July 1947, on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer) [7]

...
His Cause, they have already demonstrated, stands identified with, and revolves round, the principle of the organic unity of mankind as representing the consummation of the whole process of human evolution. This final stage in this stupendous evolution, they assert, is not only necessary but inevitable...

The Baha'i Faith recognizes the unity of God and of His Prophets, upholds the principle of an unfettered search after truth, condemns all forms of superstition and prejudice, teaches that the fundamental purpose of religion is to promote concord and harmony, that it must go hand-in-hand with science ...
(June 1933, from a letter written by Shoghi Effendi to the High Commissioner for Palestine)

...we are a religion and not qualified to pass on scientific matters ...
(30 September 1950, on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer) [9]

We may therefore be utterly confident that the new throb of energy now vibrating throughout the Cause will empower it to meet the oncoming challenges of [***]assisting[***], as maturity and resources allow, the development of the social and economic life of peoples, of [***]collaborating with[***] the forces leading towards the establishment of order in the world, of influencing the exploitation and constructive uses of modern technology, and in all these ways enhancing the prestige and progress of the Faith and uplifting the conditions of the generality of mankind.
(Ridvan 1983, message from the Universal House of Justice to the Baha'is of the World) [10]


The scientific and technological advances occurring in this unusually blessed century portend a great surge forward in the social evolution of the planet, and indicate the means by which the practical problems of humanity may be solved. They provide, indeed, the very means for the administration of the complex life of a united world. Yet barriers persist. Doubts, misconceptions, prejudices, suspicions and narrow self-interest beset nations and peoples in their relations one to another....

If, therefore, humanity has come to a point of paralyzing conflict it must look to itself, to its own negligence, to the siren voices to which it has listened, for the source of the misunderstandings and confusion perpetrated in the name of religion. Those who have held blindly and selfishly to their
particular orthodoxies, who have imposed on their votaries erroneous and conflicting interpretations of the pronouncements of the Prophets of God, bear heavy responsibility for this confusion -- a confusion compounded by the artificial barriers erected between faith and reason, science and religion. For from a fair-minded examination of the actual utterances of the Founders of the great religions, and of the social milieus in which they were obliged to carry out their missions, there is nothing to support the contentions and prejudices deranging the religious communities of mankind and therefore all human affairs....

...using scientific and technological progress in the interest of peace and the benefit of mankind -- all such measures, if courageously enforced and expanded, will advance the day when the spectre of war will have lost its power to dominate international relations. ...

The advantage of the part in a world society is best served by promoting the advantage of the whole. Current international activities in various fields which nurture mutual affection and a sense of solidarity among peoples need greatly to be increased. (October 1985, message from the Universal House of Justice to the
Peoples of the World, entitled "The Promise of World Peace") [11]

... in the astounding advances in the realms of science, technology, literature and the arts -- in all this tumult, with its paradoxical manifestations of chaos and order, integration and disintegration, are the signs of His power as World Reformer, the proof of His claim as Divine Physician, the truth of His Word as the All-Knowing Counsellor.

With regard to the harmony of science and religion, the Writings of the Central Figures and the commentaries of the Guardian make abundantly clear that the task of humanity, including the Baha'i community that serves as the "leaven" within it, is to create a global civilization which embodies both the spiritual and material dimensions of existence. The nature and scope of such a civilization are still beyond anything the present generation can conceive. The prosecution of this vast enterprise will depend on a progressive interaction between the truths and principles of religion and the discoveries and insights of scientific inquiry.

[***] This entails living with ambiguities as a natural
[***] and inescapable feature of the process of
[***] exploring reality.

[***] It also requires us not to limit science to any
[***] particular school of thought or methodological
[***] approach postulated in the course of its
[***] development.

The challenge facing Baha'i thinkers is to provide responsible leadership in this endeavour, since it is they who have both the priceless insights of the Revelation and the advantages conferred by scientific investigation.
(19 May 1995, written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to an individual believer)

Sean H.
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Covenant and fundamentalism (Universal House of Justice)

Postby Sean H. » Sun Nov 19, 2006 12:57 pm

http://bahai-library.com/?file=uhj_acad ... hodologies

The House of Justice recognizes that, at the other extreme, there are Bahá'ís who, imbued by what they conceive to be loyalty to Bahá'u'lláh, cling to blind acceptance of what they understand to be a statement of the Sacred Text. This shortcoming demonstrates an equally serious failure to grasp the profundity of the Bahá'í principle of the harmony of faith and reason. The danger of such an attitude is that it exalts personal understanding of some part of the Revelation over the whole, leads to illogical and internally
inconsistent applications of the Sacred Text, and provides fuel to those who would mistakenly characterize loyalty to the Covenant as "fundamentalism".

It is not surprising that individual Bahá'ís hold and express different and sometimes defective understandings of the Teachings; this is but an evidence of the magnitude of the change that this Revelation is to effect in human consciousness. As believers with various insights into the Teachings converse -- with patience, tolerance and open and unbiased minds -- a deepening of comprehension should take place. The strident insistence on individual views, however, can lead to contention, which is detrimental not only to the spirit of Bahá'í association and collaboration but to the search for truth itself.

Beyond contention, moreover, is the condition in which a person is so immovably attached to one erroneous viewpoint that his insistence upon it amounts to an effort to change the essential character of the Faith. This kind of behaviour, if permitted to continue unchecked, could produce disruption in the Bahá'í community, giving birth to countless sects as it has done in previous Dispensations.
...

The Universal House of Justice does not see itself obliged to prescribe a new scientific methodology for Bahá'í academics who make study of the Faith, its teachings and history the subject of their professional activities.
...

A Bahá'í recognizes that one aspect of his spiritual and intellectual growth is to foster the development of his conscience in the light of divine Revelation -- a Revelation which, in addition to providing a wealth of spiritual and ethical principles, exhorts man "to free himself from idle fancy and imitation, discern with the eye of oneness His glorious handiwork, and look into all things with a searching eye".
...

A Bahá'í's duty to pursue an unfettered search after truth should lead him to understand the Teachings as an organic, logically coherent whole, should cause him to examine his own ideas and motives, and should enable him to see
that adherence to the Covenant, to which he is a party, is not blind imitation but conscious choice, freely made and freely followed.
...

For every thing, however, God has created a
sign and symbol, and established standards
and tests by which it may be known. The
spiritually learned must be characterized by
both inward and outward perfections; they
must possess a good character, an
enlightened nature, a pure intent, as well as
intellectual power, brilliance and discernment,
intuition, discretion and foresight, temperance,
reverence, and a heartfelt fear of God. For an
unlit candle, however great in diameter and
tall, is no better than a barren palm tree or a
pile of dead wood.
(`Abdu'l-Bahá
The Secret of Divine Civilization)

http://bahai-library.com/?file=uhj_scho ... tive_order

... apparently unwise interventions on the part of a few Bahá'ís of rigid mind-set ...

... not only are Bahá'ís urged to uphold the principle of unfettered search after truth, but they have also been encouraged from the time of the Faith's inception to pursue knowledge in all its forms and to excel in such attainments. ...

... You should be confident that the House of Justice will not permit a climate of intolerance to prosper in the Bahá'í community, no matter from what cause it arises. ...

... The House of Justice feels confident that, with patience, self-discipline, and unity of faith, Bahá'í academics will be able to

[***] contribute to a gradual forging of the more
[***] integrative paradigms of scholarship

for which thoughtful minds in the international community are increasingly calling.
...

Sean H.
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Re: Holistic Memes

Postby Sean H. » Sun Nov 19, 2006 2:08 pm

richard wrote:Hello Eric,

I find your intellectual insights provocative and potentially helpful. I hope my follow up questions will not display too much ignorance of your chosen integral mental framework and vocabulary.

So then, would it make sense to suggest that “scientific,” “philosophical,” and “religious” memes are too often in conflict due to their partial premises and incomplete foundations? And if so, would it not be reasonable, logical, true & good to consciously integrate the three partial memes into a holistic meme that can evolve, grow, and progress with a greater perspective on the total universe realities of the relationships between and among material, intellectual, and spiritual manifestations?

Indeed, do you think there is some fatal barrier to such a seemingly sensible integration resulting in the conscious development and evolution of “The Holistic Scientific-Philosophical-Religious-Meme?” richard


richard,

I always benefit from , and greatly enjoy, your insightful obserations.

Integralism is holistic. It honors the valid aspects of all memes, and clearly identifes the flaws of each.

Here is one of the many developmental models that describe the stages of human/social evolution:

pre-modern
modern
post-modern
integral

These stages are more fully elaborated at:

http://wilber.shambhala.com/html/misc/iraq.pdf


---excerpt---

[Ken Wilber]

. . .
I therefore suggested a few things about what a world governance system operating at yellow might look like. "Yellow" is the level of consciousness at which "second tier" or truly integral awareness begins to emerge. It is thus contrasted with the previous 6 levels or vMemes—which are called first tier, each of which believes that its value system is the only true, correct, or deeply worthwhile value system in existence.

Those first-tier waves are, very briefly:

[] beige: instinctual;

[] purple: magical-animistic, tribal;

[] red: egocentric, power, feudalistic;

[] blue: mythic-membership, conformist, fundamentalist, ethnocentric, traditional;

[] orange: excellence, achievement, progress, modern;

[] green: postmodern, multicultural, sensitive, pluralistic.

Those first-tier waves of development are followed by what Clare Graves called "the momentous leap of meaning" to

second tier, which has, as of today, two major levels or waves of awareness:

[] yellow: systemic, flexible, flowing;

[] turquoise: cosmic unity, integrative, nested hierarchies of interrelationships, one-in-many holism.

The point of the Utopian discussion was simply: what might a world be like whose center of gravity was second tier? In the following I will often use the terms "second tier," "integral," "yellow," and "turquoise" interchangeably; the points I want to make are very general.

The reason that Graves called second tier a "momentous leap" is that unlike all first-tier waves (which imagine their values are the only correct values),

[***] second tier has an understanding of the
[***] crucial if relative importance of all previous
[***] values—including red, blue, orange, and green.


Orange thinks green is mindless;

green despises orange;

blue thinks both of them are going to burn in hell forever.

Yellow, on the other hand,

[***] finds all of them necessary and acceptable,

[***] as long as none of them gets the upper
[***] hand and starts repressing the others.

This, needless to say, would have a profound influence on any World Federation operating from yellow or second tier values (as we will see).

There are two basic points to keep in mind about any future world governance system. The first is that

[***] laws, to be laws, are enacted from the highest
[***] average expectable level of development in the
[***] governance system.

In today's world, for example, most of the laws in Western democracies stem from the orange level, which is worldcentric, postconventional, and modern (or, as our French friends first expressed the orange meme 300 years ago: equality, fraternity, liberty). Many countries continue to operate basically at a

[] blue level: conformist, non-democratic (dictatorial or totalitarian), grounded not in evidence but in dogma (Marxist, Muslim, or otherwise), and ethnocentric (believe the Book or burn).

Some terrorist cells (not to mention street gangs) remain at

[] red: hierarchies of raw power and physical strength, implemented often by torture, rape, or any means necessary to keep a particular warlord in power.

Although structures such as red and blue might sound rather brutal, and often are, they have to be seen in context: they are usually the best that can be arranged under the given circumstances and conditions.

So we are asking, what would a world governance system—a World Federation—look like if it operated from second tier, and implemented its basic laws from a yellow (or higher) center of gravity? But before we address that, there is the second basic item to keep in mind, namely:

[] no matter how highly developed a society might
[] be—including one whose center of gravity is
[] yellow—nonetheless everybody in that (or any)
[] society is still born at square one.

Just because a society is "yellow" does not mean everybody in that society will be yellow; on the contrary, very few will be, at least at first, just as today in our "orange" societies, not everybody is at orange; in fact, at least half of the adult population pre-orange (purple, red, blue).

[] It is simply that our laws stem mostly from orange.

That means that, even in an "integral society" (yellow or higher), there will still be pockets or subcultures of individuals at purple, red, blue, orange, and green. This is not only unavoidable, it is healthy, normal, desirable.

[] What is not desirable, however, is that any of
[] those waves dominate the governance system
[] and therefore attempt to force their values on
[] others


—whether those are red values, blue values, or green values. A yellow society, in short, would have laws that basically stem from that second-tier level of consciousness. And the basic defining characteristic of yellow is that it accepts all previous values without letting any of them repress or dominate others.
. . .


---end---


All memes go through a cycle of birth and decay, so there is a similarity to the Baha'i idea of "progressive revelation".

The process of decay involves the circumstances under which a meme/paradigm loses its legitimacy (its ability to explain newly emergent realities in human consciousness, social circumstances, etc.).

Jurgen Habermas, the famous German philosopher, described this "crisis of legitimization" in detail, especially how (modernism and postmodenism) "systems" have "colonized arts and morals" (also known as "lifeworld", which includes mysticism and spirituality).

"Systems" includes the dominant belief in bureaucracies as embodying the "model of social progress" that modernism promotes.

Gebser described the "crisis of legitimization" as the "collapse of structures of consciousness".

As Ken Wilber has stated, Integralism brings practical solutions to complex, "intractable" problems via both holism and by describing a "developmental" (evolutionary) framework for understanding human consciousness.

The particular problem the world is facing on the leading edge of consciousness is the increasing rot of the "green", postmodern meme.

When a rapidly spreading and gowing "green" pluralism/relativism goes bad, it will attempt to destroy all old systems of order, including trhe global economic system, and will potentially create conditions under which (according to one leading futurist) as much as half of the human population of planet earth wil be exterminated, or otherwise perish. All in the name of "diversity" and "progressivism" ("sensitivity", "inclusion", "compassion"...), or at least their degenerate, inquisitorial, politically correct forms.

Baha'i culture contains elements of pre-modern, mond and post-modern culture. I would argue that it also contains integral elements, especially the "cosmic unity" part (which interestingly, was originally described by "pre-modern" mystics and prophets).

Unfortunately what most Baha'is do is to gravitate toward "first tier" memes (which are absorbed from society), which inevitably sets up paradigm conflicts within Baha'i culture as proponets of one meme "war" against proponents of others.

What is needed is "not mere opposition, but comprehension".

Fundamentalism follows modernism, and is a reaction against it. Modernism seeks to marginalize spirituality due to the past corruption of religion, but in the process, gave birth to the kind of narcissicm and nihilism that are typical of post-modern culture.

I personally respect fundamentalists because their beliefs shield them from what they see as a chaotic world of meaninglessness, and give them a sense of order. However, as soon as they attempt to impose their beliefs and ways of life on others (particularly at a higher level), my respect ends.

Again, Ken Wilber:

---excerpt---

. . .
Blair has also been an authentic pioneer in "third way" politics (cf. A Theory of Everything), which is one of the first serious moves toward an integral politics that unites the best of liberal and conservative, is perhaps no surprise. Given the actual world situation as it is now, Blair's general position seems to be the best that can pragmatically be offered.

(In my opinion, the major item missing in the stance of Blair, not to mention the other major political leaders, is some sort of sophisticated developmental perspective, which, to put it briefly, is one of five major dimensions in an integral approach; i.e., it is the "levels" aspect of "quadrants, levels, lines, states, and types." One of the saddest of the non-integral effects of the present world leadership is the continuing turmoil caused by Western democracies imagining that they can drop an orange-meme democracy with green-meme sensitivity smack in the middle of a red-meme desert and somehow it will grow. This is not world policy; this is Jack and the Bean Stalk. Everybody is born at square one. Unless there is a healthy blue infrastructure—whether in inner city ghettos or Mid-East tribes—there is no place for red youth to go, and thus they end up trapped in warlord city. Forcing "democracy" on such a culture simply results, as it consistently has elsewhere, in the free election of military dictators. This, needless to say, is a complex topic; readers are again referred to A Theory of Everything for an overview, as well as to integralinstitute.org.)

What has struck me the most in the highly emotional debates about the war in Iraq is how deeply the entire discussion is sunk in first-tier value fights. Both the blue-to-orange Bush supporters, and the orange-to-green media (and protesters) give wildly skewed, biased, and prejudiced accounts of the events. I am constantly taken aback by how brutally narrow a given perspective is, even (and sometimes especially) those claiming to be caring and inclusive and compassionate. There is plenty of truth on each side of the debate, just not the whole truth, which both sides vociferously claim to possess.

I long for a discussion where integral openness can flourish. I long for a group of world leaders who can see a bigger picture, a bigger picture that really does allow all value systems to arise, but only worldcentric behavior to be tolerated. I long for this silly Utopian view of a World Federation, where "everybody is right" but only if some are more right than others (e.g., worldcentric is more right than ethnocentric; see excerpt B, "Three Principles Helpful for Any Integrative Approach" [posted on this site]). I long for the freedom and fullness of integral awareness shared by as many sentient beings as possible. I long for a time when an integral approach is not vehemently hated by green and blue alike. But, alas, I am doomed to long largely in isolation, it seems.
. . .
---end---

Regards,
Eric

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Re: Covenant and fundamentalism (Universal House of Justice)

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Sun Nov 19, 2006 11:11 pm

epierce wrote:... not only are Bahá'ís urged to uphold the principle of unfettered search after truth, but they have also been encouraged from the time of the Faith's inception to pursue knowledge in all its forms and to excel in such attainments. ...


Yes, we persue knowledge from all sources. We disgard the ones that don't work or that are not compatible with the Baha'i teachings. But what philosophers (or science) says bears no weight if what is said is a direct contradiction of some aspect of the Writings. Remeber: UNITY.

You say:

the Guardian stated (paraphrasing) that Baha'is should stay current on the leading edge of philosophy and science.


And now science: A lot of science today is motivated by political interests, especially liberal ones. [Or it's just plain wrong (as you'll see with my coffee example)]. They dominate and give their funding for the politically correct research. You can't just hide behind "science" to say that Baha'is are wrong in a certain area of belief because some (pseudo)science says this or that. Also, though underrepresented because of certain factors including what I just mentioned, you can always find research pointing in the opposite direction. The whole coffee/caffeine issue is a good example. Some studies show 2 cups (or whatever it may be) a day add to the health, others don't show that, and yet others show that caffeine is bad for you. Similarly, some studies show that since caffeine stimulates the N.S., it actually gives you more energy. Others show that this increased energy, being restricted to the nervous level, only makes you feel like you have more energy. (Note that there are probably no politics behind coffee; I just used the example to illustrate the dichotomies that can be found in research—much of which is just plain bad science.)

Well Epierce, though you accuse Baha'is as not being open-minded and not investigating after truth, you still haven't given a convincing argument that Baha'is are doing such. Maybe the ones that you were around were a certain way, but you can't generalize it to all Baha'is.

Personally I have family members who have rejected the Faith, including an ex-Baha'i. Listening to them talk, it becomes obvious that they are in fact much less open-minded than the average man, and they are also full of hatred, at least much more than you'd expect from an ordinary person. They have opinions about everything, which usually are (excessively) negative. Compare this with Baha'is who have benign love for one another. Whatever is "truth" will be manifested in the believer. Generally, if the message is "good," then the people who reflect the message will be "good" too; they are a mirror of the "good" in other words.

Regards.

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Wed Nov 22, 2006 1:27 am

Since when do Baha'is "vehemently" hate "an integral approach"? If you mean integrating anti-Baha'i ideas with Baha'i ones, then it should be obvious why those partciular ideas wouldn't be accepted.

Epierce, we are all "longing," but it is unproductive to long for something and get depressed that it won't happen in your lifetime. We Baha'is know that a world federation won't happen in our lifetimes, but that doesn't mean we don't work toward it. We don't become dejected and collapse along with the crumbling old world order.

In The World Order of Baha'u'llah, Shoghi Effendi predicted terrorism. But we (Baha'is) don't get depressed and hopeless over such things, because they are inevitable—at least to someone with flawless insight such as Shoghi Effendi. It is essential that the ugliness of irreligion, fake religious devotion, excessive intellectualism at the expense of religion, materialism and sybaritism/hedonism be made manifest to the whole world, so that the glory of Baha'u'llah's Revelation will shine even more resplendently, that in huge numbers humanity will enter the only Stronghold, the Baha'i Faith. Philosophical and esoteric thinking without God is not enough. When you die, will God inquire how well your philosophical thinking was? No, and there is no wisdom in rejecting God or His Messenger. Baha'u'llah says that true wisdom lies in the belief in God. So if one's wisdom doesn't take this into account, can it really be said to be "wisdom"?

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Overcoming the chaos of intellectual diversity

Postby curt » Wed Nov 22, 2006 7:58 am

He knoweth the inner secrets of the hearts and the meaning hidden in the mocker's wink...We are, in truth, the one to judge. - Kitab-i-Aqdas, K 157

I spent an evening on integralinstitute.org to figure out just what the heck Eric was going on and on about. Well, all I want to say is THANKS Eric! I see what you are talking about and see profound applications personally and professionally. In a way, it reminds me of a yoga principle: expose your weaknesses to find strength, work the edge to find the center. I love yoga, love what I read on integralism, and love the Baha'i Faith. No need for any conflicts between them whatsoever.

Wishing you all the best,

Curt

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Re: Overcoming the chaos of intellectual diversity

Postby Sean H. » Sat Nov 25, 2006 4:57 am

curt wrote:He knoweth the inner secrets of the hearts and the meaning hidden in the mocker's wink...We are, in truth, the one to judge. - Kitab-i-Aqdas, K 157

I spent an evening on integralinstitute.org to figure out just what the heck Eric was going on and on about. Well, all I want to say is THANKS Eric! I see what you are talking about and see profound applications personally and professionally. In a way, it reminds me of a yoga principle: expose your weaknesses to find strength, work the edge to find the center. I love yoga, love what I read on integralism, and love the Baha'i Faith. No need for any conflicts between them whatsoever.

Wishing you all the best,

Curt


Curt,

LOL! Glad you liked it. It is possible, although expensive, for people to get both undergraduate and graduate degrees in Integral studies.

Wilber's "holons" were probably partly derived from Gebser's work in the 1940s on "structures of consciousness".

Some basic stuff on integralism:

http://www.integralworld.net/overview.html


Here is a short graphical version in postmodern zen style:

http://www.formlessmountain.com/quads_more.htm


Here is what I call the "holistic enchilada" on integralism, as you can see, it is very similar to some aspects of Baha'i thinking on the emergence of a "new world order":

http://wilber.shambhala.com/html/books/ ... /intro.cfm


If you like audio stuff, here are some interesting Wilber talks:

http://www.formlessmountain.com/audio1/audio.html

In one of the audio talks, Wilber says that "research" indicates that even with a lot of meditation discipline, it typically takes several years for young people to become fully "integralist". For others, it can take 5 to 10 years to change modes.

As you can tell from the above, Wilber is now very focused on the rot within postmodernism, and relativism/pluralism (the "green meme"), and how that obstacle to social change can be overcome with integralism.

Since on a surface level, elements of Wilber's criticism of the "green meme" can sound similar to conservative critiques of leftism/progressivism, Wilber's version of integralism has been misrepresented as a form of "new age" conservatism! Wilber calls this misrepresentation the "pre-trans fallacy".

fwiw, Ken Wilber is reported to have had some contact with "new age" type Baha'is over the years, but I don't have many details. If you are near Los Angeles, you might try to find David Langness and ask him what he knows. John Suggs, of Detroit, is another Baha'i author that has studied Wilber, as has Terry Culhane of Omaha.

As in the quotes I posted in this thread, the Universal House of Justice has told Baha'is to "contribute to integrative paradigms" that have been developed by people that are not Baha'is. It would be awesome if some Baha'i scholars interested in integralism asked the Universal House of Justice for clarification.

I personally also do not see why there should be any conflict between Bahai belief and Integralism. The conflict is between fundamentalist Baha'i thought (and other dysfunctional, doctrinally rigid, forms of Baha'i culture) and Integralism.

I grew up (1950s/60s) around holistic thinking and Buddhism, so it is somewhat difficult for me to understand the narrow mindedness of some people who proclaim adherance to a universalist religion, but who immediately attempt to corrupt the belief system into something quite "un-universalist". Scott Peck, theologian/psychiatrist, said that fundamentalism is a mechanism that shields people from the psychic pain of a world that they see as being full of chaos. That kind of thing is at a fairly low level of consciousness, at higher levels of consciousness, the "chaos" is revealed to have an inner pattern of order.

Note: 20 years ago, if you had said you were doing yoga, you would have been labeled as a near heretic in a lot of Baha'i communities.

Regards,
Eric

Sean H.
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Re: Covenant and fundamentalism (Universal House of Justice)

Postby Sean H. » Sat Nov 25, 2006 6:32 am

Baha'i Warrior wrote:
epierce wrote:... not only are Bahá'ís urged to uphold the principle of unfettered search after truth, but they have also been encouraged from the time of the Faith's inception to pursue knowledge in all its forms and to excel in such attainments. ...


Yes, we persue knowledge from all sources. We disgard the ones that don't work or that are not compatible with the Baha'i teachings. But what philosophers (or science) says bears no weight if what is said is a direct contradiction of some aspect of the Writings. Remeber: UNITY.



Actually, you have it kinda backwards (as usual), Abdu'l-Baha said that misintepretations of religious belief that are in conflict with science/reason should be discarded in favor of science.

The Universal House of Justice is clear on the problem with misinterpretation of religion:

"If, therefore, humanity has come to a point of paralyzing conflict it must look to itself, to its own negligence, to the siren voices to which it has listened, for the source of the misunderstandings and confusion perpetrated in the name of religion. Those who have held blindly and selfishly to their particular orthodoxies, who have imposed on their votaries erroneous and conflicting interpretations of the pronouncements of the Prophets of God, bear heavy responsibility for this confusion -- a confusion compounded by the artificial barriers erected between faith and reason, science and religion. .... "


Baha'i Warrior wrote:You say:

the Guardian stated (paraphrasing) that Baha'is should stay current on the leading edge of philosophy and science.




Lets pause a moment and think about what is to follow in what you wrote.

What follows completely disregards the whole point that the Guardian is making, that science and religion, faith and reason, are complementary.

It completley discards the Guardian's advice to stay current on the leading advances in science and philosophy.

It is a distortion, and is an invitation to ignorance and insularization.

In other words, it is an attempt to make the Baha'i Faith into exactly the same things that its enemies have made of their religions.


Baha'i Warrior wrote:And now science: A lot of science today is motivated by political interests, especially liberal ones. [Or it's just plain wrong (as you'll see with my coffee example)]. They dominate and give their funding for the politically correct research. You can't just hide behind "science" to say that Baha'is are wrong in a certain area of belief because some (pseudo)science says this or that. Also, though underrepresented because of certain factors including what I just mentioned, you can always find research pointing in the opposite direction. The whole coffee/caffeine issue is a good example. Some studies show 2 cups (or whatever it may be) a day add to the health, others don't show that, and yet others show that caffeine is bad for you. Similarly, some studies show that since caffeine stimulates the N.S., it actually gives you more energy. Others show that this increased energy, being restricted to the nervous level, only makes you feel like you have more energy. (Note that there are probably no politics behind coffee; I just used the example to illustrate the dichotomies that can be found in research—much of which is just plain bad science.)


A lot of science is driven by capitalism and democracy, not necessarily in that order.

You appear to have either no idea what science actually is about in its totality (did you actually state on this forum that you are a pre-med student???), or you are fabricating a ridiculous distortion in order to avoid the real point, which is that the Baha'i teachings are clear that doctinal rigidity, fundamentalism ,etc, is incompatible with Baha'i theology.

The fact is that you have repeatedly disregarded basic points made by the Universal House of Justice and in the Baha'i writings, and have refused to admit your errors, or apologised for misleading people or for your frequent distortions and insults.


Baha'i Warrior wrote:
Well Epierce, though you accuse Baha'is as not being open-minded and not investigating after truth, you still haven't given a convincing argument that Baha'is are doing such. Maybe the ones that you were around were a certain way, but you can't generalize it to all Baha'is.


This is of course a serious and disturbing distortion of my previous statements. What I've done is describe patterns and tendencies in the dominant form of Baha'i culture that I've seen for over three decades in a dozen places across north america as well as in europe. I've talked to somewhere around 50 people, half of whom are Baha'i scholars, that have similar observations, and read material from that many more. I've had numerous friends attacked, usually viciously, by narrow-minded Baha'is that were abusers of authority. The rhetoric used is predictable. I've seen it used in public meetings, as well as behind the scenes. I've seen some of the worst abusers removed from their positions in Bahai administration by the World Center itself after years of complaints from the friends and famlies of those attacked and abused.

You have conflated all that with what in your apparently fevered imagination is a "generalization".

There is plenty of "evidence" on this forum that Baha'is are closed minded, many of your responses provide perfect examples.

Make no mistake, I do not think that you (BW) have any idea what I'm talking about, I'm simply using your futile, indecorus outbursts as an example for other people to see how ill-conceived, fanatical and reactionary ideas are put forth as representative of the Baha'i mainstream, and how intolerance is somehow being made into some sort of hideous, corrupt version of Baha'i "unity".

What a "healthy" (non-dysfunctional) form of Baha'i culture would do is to embrace criticism and use it to become stronger and better instead of covering it up with lies, distortions, denials and more attacks on critics and victims.


Baha'i Warrior wrote:Personally I have family members who have rejected the Faith, including an ex-Baha'i. Listening to them talk, it becomes obvious that they are in fact much less open-minded than the average man, and they are also full of hatred, at least much more than you'd expect from an ordinary person. They have opinions about everything, which usually are (excessively) negative. Compare this with Baha'is who have benign love for one another. Whatever is "truth" will be manifested in the believer. Generally, if the message is "good," then the people who reflect the message will be "good" too; they are a mirror of the "good" in other words.

Regards.


Since I have no idea who your family members are, I can't comment on the specifics of their "hatred". If they are fundamentalists or evangelicals or conservatives, it is obvious why they would "reject the Faith". Besides that, if they have formed their opinions about Baha'i as a result of conversing with you, I can see why they might have some very negative reactions to it, or at least your presentation of it.

Generally, people have a very wide number of reasons for not being interested in the Baha'i Faith, or for losing interest if they are in it. Some of those various reasons are good, some bad.

The problem with most of your points on the topic as I see it is that you are incapable of admitting that the myth that "Baha'is are perfect", or "Baha'i institutions are perfect", or "Baha'i culture" is perfect, is incorrect.

Why you seem to have a need to construct rigid absolutes that distort the Baha'i writings I can't guess very accurately, but from the others that I've had the displeasure of learning from over the years, people with rigid, uninformed ways of thinking almost always distort things to fit their narrow way of seeing the world.

I think that most Baha'is would like to "mirror good", but they are operating largely within a fear-based paradigm that results from a corrupt leadship model, and have few opportunities to improve things in the community as much as they would like.

Regards,
Eric

ps, for an example of a historically documented case of early vicious attacks, read up on how a faction on the white dominated NSA went after Louis Gregory for merely appearing to give the perception of supporting the "street activist" types in the "Race Amity" movement against the wealthy social elites that took over the community after the fight about the location of the House of Worship. In Iran, there was a possibly worse incident having to do with a historian named Mazindarani who was attacked for daring to produce factual evidence that challenged the mythical aspects of "mainstream" Babi/Baha'i history.

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Postby brettz9 » Sat Nov 25, 2006 12:13 pm

Actually, you have it kinda backwards (as usual)


You appear to have either no idea what science actually is about in its totality (did you actually state on this forum that you are a pre-med student???)


in your apparently fevered imagination


Eric, please do refrain from making these kind of comments. These are not at all helpful, and are certainly not going to be effective in winning over BW or anyone else.

We would like to see a level of courtesy in this forum. That goes for BW and everyone else here as well.

But in this case, it seems you have tried to revive an earlier ugly debate, and you have not cited anything from BW (certainly in any recent discussion) which fits your description of him engaging in "indecorus outbursts" or a "serious and disturbing distortion of my previous statements.". All he assumed here about your own previous statements was that "you accuse Baha'is as not being open-minded and not investigating after truth" and this you confirm when you say "There is plenty of "evidence" on this forum that Baha'is are closed minded". Rather, he simply stated his opinion that "Maybe the ones that you were around were a certain way, but you can't generalize it to all Baha'is." This is an opinion rather than a characterization of your words and is also a far cry from your assessment of him that he is "incapable of admitting that the myth that "Baha'is are perfect", or "Baha'i institutions are perfect", or "Baha'i culture" is perfect, is incorrect."

It is fine if you have a difference of opinion about whose experience is more reflective of the Bahá'í community as a whole, but I can see absolutely nothing here which shows BW is distorting your words. Rather, your taking great offense makes it appear as if you are looking for an argument and a justification for correcting him and all of us with your "correct" understanding. As you seem to wish BW to accept about your having a different experience and assessment, maybe you could also admit that not every Bahá'í will have your negative perception or experience.

Please note that my response above is in regards to your tone and specific accusations against another member of our forum and not to your opinions and ideas. As far as the latter go, while as I have stated, I don't feel it is productive (or fair) to be making sweeping generalizations about Bahá'ís and will unfortunately yet perhaps inevitably often draw out argumentation, I for one do most welcome any discussion of general or specific (non-person-specific) experiences which can shed light on an issue for which we may need to improve ourselves and our community environment and hope that Bahá'ís will not feel threatened by your ideas, if you can try to state them with a little more moderation and self-effacement, as a true loyalty to the Faith will not reject but rather seek out a knowledge of areas for improvement.

best wishes,
Brett

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Re: Covenant and fundamentalism (Universal House of Justice)

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Sat Nov 25, 2006 10:32 pm

epierce wrote:You appear to have either no idea what science actually is about in its totality (did you actually state on this forum that you are a pre-med student???), or you are fabricating a ridiculous distortion in order to avoid the real point, which is that the Baha'i teachings are clear that doctinal rigidity, fundamentalism ,etc, is incompatible with Baha'i theology.


I never disagreed with this point ("the Baha'i teachings are clear..."), so I don't know what you're talking about.

epierce wrote:The fact is that you have repeatedly disregarded basic points made by the Universal House of Justice and in the Baha'i writings, and have refused to admit your errors, or apologised for misleading people or for your frequent distortions and insults.


What "errors"? Obviously I have made errors, and I readily admit to them. That you think I made errors is your opinion, and besides that you are vague and frankly I don't know what you're talking about or what you're getting at.

epierce wrote:This is of course a serious and disturbing distortion of my previous statements. What I've done is describe patterns and tendencies in the dominant form of Baha'i culture that I've seen for over three decades in a dozen places across north america as well as in europe. I've talked to somewhere around 50 people, half of whom are Baha'i scholars, that have similar observations, and read material from that many more. I've had numerous friends attacked, usually viciously, by narrow-minded Baha'is that were abusers of authority. The rhetoric used is predictable. I've seen it used in public meetings, as well as behind the scenes. I've seen some of the worst abusers removed from their positions in Bahai administration by the World Center itself after years of complaints from the friends and famlies of those attacked and abused.


The ex-Baha'i "rhetoric" is no less predictable.

epierce wrote:There is plenty of "evidence" on this forum that Baha'is are closed minded, many of your responses provide perfect examples.


Many of my responses are based on my knowledge of the Writings, which while limitied nevertheless try to be in accord or harmony with the Teachings. If I fail in this, then by all means please let me know. But so far all you can say is that there is plenty of "evidence" in my responses that Baha'is are closed minded, which certainly leaves the reader with a sense of vagueness in your posts.

epierce wrote:Make no mistake, I do not think that you (BW) have any idea what I'm talking about


If that's the case, I think I'll be forgiven for having no idea of what you're talking about, as you obviously are not here on this forum to create unity among Baha'is, but rather to distort their intentions, generalize all of them into your categories, and through disunity try to make Baha'is look like they are disunited. If I may ask, why do you post on this forum anyway? Do you try to cover up the real reason you are on the forum by attacking individual Baha'is?

epierce wrote:Since I have no idea who your family members are, I can't comment on the specifics of their "hatred". If they are fundamentalists or evangelicals or conservatives, it is obvious why they would "reject the Faith". Besides that, if they have formed their opinions about Baha'i as a result of conversing with you, I can see why they might have some very negative reactions to it, or at least your presentation of it.


Nice try. These are distant family members who I almost never meet, and had become ex-Baha'is long before I discussed the Faith with them.

epierce wrote:The problem with most of your points on the topic as I see it is that you are incapable of admitting that the myth that "Baha'is are perfect", or "Baha'i institutions are perfect", or "Baha'i culture" is perfect, is incorrect.


Obviously you wouldn't have said that if you had actually looked at my previous posts, including the most recent ones. Now:

The U.H.J. is infallible when all the members are together to decide on certain Baha'i issues. The individuals themselves are not perfect, but the U.H.J.'s decisions are infallible.

I never said N.S.A.s were perfect, and I mentioned this in one of my most previous posts (where I said some N.S.A.s were shut down because of internal conflicts, disunity, etc.).

And also I never said Baha'is were perfect. You are most mistaken in that.

Personally, I'm not going to make any personal attacks (including fabrications) on you as you have done with me, because I'm not going to sink to that low of a level.

This is the Baha'i difference, my friend.


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