Pilgrimage

All research or scholarship questions
hihellowhatsup
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Pilgrimage

Postby hihellowhatsup » Wed Nov 17, 2004 8:31 pm

I kinda want to know about Baha'i pilgrimage in general; how, where, when, etc. Is Baghdad or Shiraz an option, considering the situation there? Are we allowed to make pilgrimage to holy places associated with other religions, such as Mecca, Jerusalem, Bethlehem, etc.?

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Wed Nov 17, 2004 9:34 pm

I kinda want to know about Baha'i pilgrimage in general; how, where, when, etc.


You should contact your National Spiritual Assembly about this, as they should have this information. It is for Haifa and Akka/Bahji in Israel. There is usually a several year waiting period at least. It is only for certain months in the year.

Is Baghdad or Shiraz an option, considering the situation there?


No, although you are right that they otherwise would be, as Baha'u'llah mentions them as places of pilgrimage. Perhaps Baghdad could be if things stabilize more in the future...Shiraz is definitely not an option for now either.

Are we allowed to make pilgrimage to holy places associated with other religions, such as Mecca, Jerusalem, Bethlehem, etc.?


Given the situation and the misunderstandings propagated in the Arab world about Baha'is, Mecca might not be advisable for visits. Talk to your National Assembly...

However, in any case, we would not undergo the rites of pilgrimage for any other religion besides our own, since that would compromise the independent status of our Faith. That is different than visiting and respecting other religion's Holy Places, which circumstances permitting, we can do.

If one is visiting Israel, it should be possible to visit Jerusalem and Bethlehem. In fact, there is even an unauthenticated statement attributed to Shoghi Effendi that Baha'is ought to show their love for the past Prophets, such as Jesus, by visiting Their holy places when going on pilgrimage to Haifa and 'Akka.

Dawud
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Postby Dawud » Wed Nov 17, 2004 11:02 pm

Mecca is only open to Muslims. A Baha'i intent on visiting would have to lie about his religion, which the Baha'i religion does not allow (other forms of Shi'ism do).

Besides Jerusalem, other "Baha'i-friendly" pilgrimage spots include the birthplaces of Krishna (Vrindavan, India) and Buddha (Lumbini, Nepal).

India has many other important pilgrimage spots connected with Hinduism (of which Banaras / Varanasi is most famous), Buddhism (I suggest Sarnath, which is near Varanasi, and Bodhgaya in Bihar), Sikhism (chiefly Amritsar, in the Punjab--but check the political situation first), and Jainism. A number of Muslim sites are here too, such as the tomb of Muhammad Chishti in Agra. These have no particular connection with Baha'i tradition, however.

China has five traditional Taoist holy mountains, which are easy enough to visit. You could also go to the several Buddhist holy mountains, or to Lhasa and Mt. Kailash in Tibet (which is within China's political borders).

For Islam, there's also Rumi's tomb in Konya, Turkey. Information on Christian pilgrimage sites should be easy to come across. I recommend Mount Athos (men only) in Greece.

hihellowhatsup
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Postby hihellowhatsup » Wed Nov 24, 2004 9:36 pm

India has many other important pilgrimage spots connected with Hinduism (of which Banaras / Varanasi is most famous), Buddhism (I suggest Sarnath, which is near Varanasi, and Bodhgaya in Bihar), Sikhism (chiefly Amritsar, in the Punjab--but check the political situation first), and Jainism. A number of Muslim sites are here too, such as the tomb of Muhammad Chishti in Agra. These have no particular connection with Baha'i tradition, however.




I'm sorry...are Sikhism and Jainism part of the Baha'i list of revealed religions? Sikhism was founded after Baha'u'llah, and Jainism is disgustingly idolatrous....also phallic worship involved.

Bye! :D :D :D

Dawud
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Postby Dawud » Thu Nov 25, 2004 2:19 am

No, Sikhism and Jainism are not on the list of religions whose founders are officially recognized as prophets. This would tend to interfere with the notion of a thousand-year prophetic aeon. (The Sikh gurus came after Muhammad, and Mahavira was a contemporary of Sakyamuni Buddha.)

However, I do believe that some authoritative pronouncement or other (Shoghi Effendi? UHJ?) said that despite this, Sikhism at least should be respected. Probably the statement was meant to apply to other, similarly historic religions. (Anybody remember what this is I'm remembering?) I assumed, perhaps foolishly, that a Baha'i would be interested in consorting in a spirit of friendship etc. with some of these other religions too.

The Jain religion is more similar to Buddhism than to anything else. By "phallic worship" you seem to have in mind Shaivism, which is a sect of Hinduism, though sexual imagery occurs in other religions (including, I add mischieviously, yours). It's not so wicked as it sounds.

Yes, Jain followers worship images. So do Hindus and Buddhists. Most Christians venerate (subtle distinction) icons and images, or otherwise employ them in worship. Even Jews and Muslims turn out to have images in their faiths, just of a different kind: the Qa'aba. The Torah. Arabic and Hebrew letters. etc. Does your wall have an image of Abdul-Baha on it, by any chance? Yes, I know, but again-- it's a subtle distinction.

MWaldie
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Postby MWaldie » Thu Nov 25, 2004 10:43 am

Hi,

I have not looked into Jainism all that much but from what I see it is more related to Hindu then Buddhism and either way it has beautiful followers.

Sihkism is a very beautiful practice for the most part. As well as Sufism which Bahaullah quoted Rumi or seemed to quite often. Amazing kowledge and insight is recognized in the Bahai faith. And carries a lot of respect since there is only one God, this words surely came from him. Thee are so many places to LEARN from. We do not need to agree to learn from things.

I am not sure if this 1000 year mark is taken out of context a bit. I understood it to mean that this dispensation would last at least 1000 years for another manifestation would come. Not having anything to do with past dispensations. Or with seers and people of great understanding.

And philosophies are almost always to me divinely charged if truth flows out of them from a firm grounding in God's faith. The Bahai faith is the first with a covenant, making off shoots and true schisms impossible to uphold. That was not the case in past dispensations. From my understanding.

I would LOVE to visit those places and pay my respects to those amazingly powerful people and places.

Mat

Guest

Postby Guest » Thu Nov 25, 2004 9:15 pm

The Jain religion is more similar to Buddhism than to anything else. By "phallic worship" you seem to have in mind Shaivism, which is a sect of Hinduism, though sexual imagery occurs in other religions (including, I add mischieviously, yours). It's not so wicked as it sounds.


What are you talking about???? :?: :?: . I think you might have my religious beliefs confused. Im a Baha'i. What sexual imagery do we venerate? I truly believe you were grossely misinformed.

Does your wall have an image of Abdul-Baha on it, by any chance? Yes, I know, but again-- it's a subtle distinction.


No, it dosen't. I don't believe in the veneration of images of any kind.

Bye :) :) :)

dawu d

Postby dawu d » Fri Nov 26, 2004 5:48 am

An article on erotic symbolism in Baha'u'llah's writings, from this very site:

http://bahai-library.com/unpubl.article ... egory.html

Buddhism and Jainism are two Indic religions which arose at approximately the same time and place. Therefore they resemble one another in many important respects. The distinction between these and Hinduism (or the sects we recognize today as Hindu) came later, and the main criterion was that Hindu sects / schools of philosophy accept the authority of the Vedas, while the "heterodox" schools (Buddhism, Jainism, materialism) do not. Nevertheless, many Hindus hold that Buddha was an avatar of Vishnu (some say he taught atheism in order to trick atheists into worshipping God, in the form of himself!), and many more are inclined to respect other religions and their founders regardless.


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