Posted by Marie Lortie (22.214.171.124) on August 19, 2002 at 08:28:38:
One of the more complex and emotional issues for married Baha'is is the process of divorce. The booklet issued by the UHJ on this subject is very clear; its implementation by local LSAs differ, and its interpretation by specific persons seeking divorce is often in great variance. It is a case of culture conflict; that is, the interpretation of what seems to me to be one of the most straightforward texts - on divorce - varies from country to country, from region to region, from person to person.
I am more aware of fraudulent Years of Patience than honest ones; where couples backdate their alienation to obtain a Baha'i divorce sooner than later. That is one example of misapplication. There are dozens of other collusions between couples in agreement for Baha'i divorce and their LSAs.
Many LSAs do not have professionals to assist during the year of patience; others are worse because the person in charge of supervising the year is totally unequipped for such a task.
Given that an absolute edict for the granting of a year of patience is "to make every effort, every extraordinary effort to reconcile, that there be no sexuality during the year, that there be no sexuality with another person during the year", I do not think I know of one couple that has followed these rules perfectly.
Therefore, we come to a quandary: since in these cases - where some small or great "wrong" has been committed during the Year of Patience, is the granting of the Baha'i divorce, as presented to God, a divorce. And then, when one or both partners re-marry within the Faith, having committed sins and lies and decpetions to obtain their divorce, is their new marriage sanctified? Not that I can read the mind of God, but I can ask for guidance here, as this issue is especially troubling to a few divorced and re-married Baha'is I know personally.
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