page 244 is intentionally blank
A major purpose of this book is to provide a means by
which the messages of the Universal House of Justice can be
more easily studied by the Bahá'í community. The settings
for such a study might be a local deepening class or Bahá'í
school, a summer school, or personal study. Rather than
trying to create one course outline that might or might not fit
such a wide range of settings, this appendix provides a list of
activities and questions which can be adapted by a facilitator
or individual for developing study classes. The activities or
questions could be assigned to participants to research for
presentation and discussion within a group study session.
1. Create a timeline covering the period from 1983 to 1992.
Position the major events and transitions indicated in the
messages of the Universal House of Justice on that timeline.
If possible, use resources such as old news magazines (from
a library) to add major world events to your timeline.
2. Create an outline of each letter as you read it. Individuals
can compare their outlines in a group study. Collectively, an
outline of all the letters and/or the compilation (in part II)
could be created that would identify the major themes raised
and describe the significant points of each theme.
3. What major themes of the letters, other than those included
in part II, could you identify? Create a compilation of these
topics from the letters provided in the book and other messages
of the Universal House of Justice.
4. Review messages published since Ridván 1992 and analyze
the information presented in light of the major themes
presented in part II. What themes are further developed?
What new themes, if any, are raised?
5. Review the writings of the Guardian (and possibly
Bahá'u'lláh and 'Abdu'l-Bahá) on the major themes from the
letters identified in part two of the book. Compile the references
for discussion in a group session.
6. Research the writings to identify passages that describe the
unfoldment of future events. Relate these passages with
extracts from the letters of the Universal House of Justice in
order to gain a better understanding of how the Faith and the
world are evolving. (Compare, for example, the Guardian's
description of stages in the unfoldment of the Faith in The
Advent of Divine Justice
, page 15, and Messages to the Bahá'í
, page 155, with the House of Justice's description in
this book of our emergence from obscurity.)
7. Select one of the major themes identified in part II for
in-depth study and discussion. Ask "What can I/we do to act on
the guidance of the Universal House of Justice?" Develop a
plan and put it into action.
What has been the result of the persecutions of the Bahá'ís in
What is the relationship of the persecutions of the Iranian
believers to social and economic development? to the responsibilities
of youth? to the proclamation of the Faith? to the
Faith's emergence from obscurity? to our involvement in
peace? to external affairs activity? to the expansion of the
What has the Universal House of Justice called upon the
believers to do in response to the sacrifices of the Iranian
What is the significance and meaning of the Faith's "emergence
What is the relationship between our emergence from obscurity
and our involvement in the life of society?
What are some examples of the Bahá'í world community's
emergence from obscurity?
What responsibilities have been thrust upon the Bahá'í world
as a result of our emergence from obscurity?
Describe what is meant by the process of integration and
disintegration? What is the relationship of these twin processes
to the major and minor plans of God? (You may wish
to refer also to the writings of the Guardian in your consideration
of these questions.)
What guidance has the Universal House of Justice offered as
the means for ensuring our safe passage through the violent
period of disintegration currently engulfing humanity?
What is the relationship between the twin processes of integration
and disintegration with the "three collateral processes"
described by Shoghi Effendi? (See the Ridván 1989 message
and Messages to the Bahá'í World
, pp. 73-75.)
What are some of the indications described by the Universal
House of Justice of the processes of integration and disintegration?
What are some of the forces related to the disintegrative
Describe the organic unfoldment in the Cause of the process
of social and economic development.
What is the role of the National Assemblies in social and
economic development? What is the role of the grassroots?
What is the relationship between social and economic development
and the teaching work?
Compare and contrast the guidance of the Universal House
of Justice in social and economic development with that of its
guidance on the Bahá'í community's involvement in the life
of society. For example, what activities constitute social and
economic development? What activities and challenges represent
our involvement in the life of society? What is the
relationship between the two — and what are the points of
What is the relationship between involvement in the life of
society and the teaching work?
What challenges and opportunities face this generation of
What qualities of youth enable them to play a special role in
service to the Cause at this time?
What specific responsibilities has the Universal House of
Justice called Bahá'í youth to fulfill at this time in history?
What is the relationship of the role of youth in service to the
Cause and the theme of emergence from obscurity? of social
and economic development? of teaching? of involvement in
the life of society?
Basically, the Universal House of Justice made three appeals
involving funds from 1983 to 1992 — one in January 1984, one
in August 1987, and one in November 1991. Describe the
pattern of the community's response to the appeals. What
was the context of the appeal made by the House of Justice?
What did the House of Justice ask for? How did the community
respond? How did the House of Justice then react?
What priorities did the Universal House of Justice set for the
use of Funds in 1984? How had those priorities changed by
What is Huqúqu'lláh? What is the relationship between
Huqúqu'lláh and the Bahá'í Fund?
What is the attitude of the Bahá'í teachings toward material
means? What is the relationship between material and spiritual
What are some of the distinctive features of the law of
What is meant by the Fourth Epoch of the Formative Age?
What other Ages have been defined by the Guardian — and
what do they represent? What are some of the accomplishments
that will make the Formative Age?
What developments led to the inception of the Fourth Epoch?
What are the characteristics and objectives of this epoch?
What were the major objectives of the Six Year Plan? What
were the significant international goals of the Plan?
What was the major theme of the Six Year Plan, according to
the Universal House of Justice? How were Bahá'ís directed to
address this theme?
What were some of the accomplishments of the Plan noted by
the Universal House of Justice?
How did the Universal House of Justice measure victory in
Describe the maturation of the following institutions in light
of the messages of the Universal House of Justice: the institution
of the learned, the national assemblies, the local
assemblies, and the Feast.
Describe the characteristics of the maturity that the institutions
are being encouraged to attain.
What is meant by a "unity of diversity of actions?" Why is it
important and what is its relationship to the maturity of
How is adherence to principle related to the maturation of
What is meant by collaboration between the two arms of the
administration? What are the complimentary functions of
What appeals have the Universal House of Justice addressed
to the individual teacher in the years 1983-1992?
How does the Universal House of Justice describe the nature
of teaching? How can individuals achieve greater levels of
success in teaching?
What is the relationship between teaching and transformation?
Describe the characteristics of the more mature approach to
teaching called for by the Universal House of Justice in its
messages since 1983.
What are the stages described by the Guardian that will lead
to mass conversion? What is the role of the Bahá'í community
in achieving this goal?
In 1987, the Universal House of Justice indicated that the
"stage is set for universal, rapid and massive growth of the
Cause of God." In 1988, it noted a "new paradigm" of opportunity
for further growth. What was the result of the House
of Justice's subsequent appeals to meet this challenge? What
is our current status? What are the challenges that lie ahead?
What has been the role of the International Teaching Centre
in the current stage of execution of the teaching work?
In what ways did the operation of God's Major Plan act to
create possibilities for new developments in the teaching
field? What steps were taken to seize these opportunities?
What were the results of these efforts?
What are some of the specific challenges facing the American
Bahá'í community that were mentioned by the Universal
House of Justice? What advice or directions has the Supreme
Body given to meet these challenges?
Describe the historical process of the development of the Arc
on Mount Carmel as the World Centre of the Faith. What
projects are involved with the completion of the Arc? What
has been accomplished on these current plans to date?
What is the relationship between the development of the Arc
and the teaching work? the Arc and the maturation of the
institutions of the Faith? the Arc and our involvement with
peace? the Arc and the release of spiritual power?
What — according to the writings of the Guardian — is the
significance of the development of the Arc on Mount Carmel?
What is the purpose of the Holy Year? What two major events
mark the Holy Year? What is the purpose of these events?
What is meant by the "spiritual celebration" which is to mark
the Holy Year?
How are the themes of reflection, reconsecration, and action
addressed by the Universal House of Justice in relation to the
What are the significant aspects of the Person and Mission of
Bahá'u'lláh that we are to focus on and convey to humanity
during the Holy Year? How are we to prepare ourselves to
accomplish these tasks? What actions are we to undertake to