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USBN #202 December 1947 p3

Regarding your questions: There are only two institutions which are infallible, one is the guardianship, the other the International House of Justice. What the Master desired to protect the friends against was continual bickering and opinionatedness . A believer can ask the Assembly why they made a certain decision and politely request them to reconsider. But then he must leave it at that, and not go on disrupting local affairs through insisting on his own views. This applies to an Assembly member as well. We all have a right to our opinions, we are bound to think differently; but a Baha'i must accept the majority decision of his Assembly, realizing that acceptance and harmony-even if a mistake has been made-are the really important things , and when we serve the Cause properly, in the Baha'i way, God will right any wrongs done in the end.

Baha'is are not required to vote on an Assembly against their consciences. It is better if they submit to the majority view and make it unanimous. But they are not forced to. What they must do, however, is to abide by the majority decision, as this is what becomes effective. They must not go around undermining the Assembly by saying they disagreed with the majority. In other words, they must put the Cause first and not their own opinions.

He, (an S. A. member) can ask the Assembly to reconsider a matter, but he has no right to force them or create inharmony because they won't change. Unanimous votes are preferable, but certainly cannot be forced upon Assembly members by artificial methods such as are used by other societies.

What Baha'u'llah means by chastity certainly does not include the kissing that goes on in modern society. It is detrimental to the morals of young people, and often leads them to go too far, or arouses appetites which they cannot perhaps at the time satisfy legitimately through marriage, and the suppression of which is a strain on them.

The Baha'i standard is very high, more particularly when compared with the thoroughly rotten morals of the present world. But this standard of ours will produce healthier, happier, nobler people, and induce stabler marriages.

– to John Bernard Cornel dated October 19, 1947

[See also which includes John’s letter to the Guardian.

John was on-line when I first got on-line and discussed the background of this letter, which had to do w/ his divorce and his belief that the local Assembly had been conned by his ex-wife. ]

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