How do your present the Bahai faith?

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NolF
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How do your present the Bahai faith?

Postby NolF » Thu Oct 20, 2005 9:57 am

How would you present the bahai faith briefly, to a person who doesn't know much or anything about it, in about 30sec to 1 minute?

Ie. The Bahai Faith was found in Iran in 1844. The founder of the Bahai Faith is Bahá'u'lláh. As a Bahai I beleave in equality of men and women etc...

Baha'i Warrior
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Re: How do your present the Bahai faith?

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Thu Oct 20, 2005 11:58 am

well that depends on who you are talking to. if you are talking to a women (especially one that is for women's rights, etc.), you might want to emphasize the equality of men and women principle. if you are talking to an African American, you might want to tell him about the equality of the races. a scientist, harmony of science and religion, etc. and also, if you know what the other guys religion is, that makes a difference. 'Abdu'l-Baha says that we should learn proofs and go out and make use of them when teaching. this is why it's important to study the Koran and Bible, then study the Kitab-i-Iqan (according to Shoghi Effendi, possibly the most important book Baha'u'llah wrote), Some Answered Questions, etc.

So maybe give a brief intro (also including that the Baha'i Faith is the second most widespread religion if you want, that fact emphasizes our diversity), some important dates, and some memorized quotes, because you can give someone all the proofs in the world, but the Word of Baha'u'llah will have an impact on their soul, as opposed to just their mind. but another thing to keep in mind is that 'Abdu'l-Baha said that we should let the other person empty his cup. so you may want to say a little about your religion, then ask him about his beliefs (this way you learn more about him and can think of what to say next). also, this way it doesn't look like you're imposing your beliefs on him. you can talk about progressive revelation, mentioning that we believe in the past Messengers of God. this way they don't have to feel like they are abandoning their religion or their Holy Book.

as to a general intro, here is a good example of one:

http://terraces.bahai.org/bahai.en.html


so again, how you introduce the Faith really depends on the person you are talking to. you want to relate the Faith in some way to him. for example, if you are talking to someone from India, you can tell him about the lotus temple. chances are if he lived in India he visited it—it's frequented more than the taj mahal; those are statistics.

hope that helps a bit


—Warrior

majnun
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i dunno

Postby majnun » Fri Oct 21, 2005 2:24 am

Dear Nolf:

to answer your question:

I don't know. And may i ask you:

Do you think that in one minute anybody can trigger
or wake a genuine spiritual interest in another person
who's brain has been either sleeping or whirling around
for years ?

I think no tricks, no massive arguments can do this in one minute or so.
And how can we present our personal views on this,
without distorting the message a bit ? It is a touchy subject, how
to speak about it. May i suggest, to talk about it with a voice
of "milk".
I mean that what convinced me that it was a superb track,
may not convince others easyly. Many internal resistors were
gradually crushed in me, and this is an "ongoing" process.

When i was studying the Qur'an years ago, most people asked me,
defiantly: gimme a line of text that will convince me. I did not know
what to answer, because each religion is a vastness for the one who is
immerged in it, that it hardly can be reduced to a few sentences.

An honest dialog on spirituality and on new religions, more than a minute,
may induce a spiritual thirst in someone who is not aware of his actual state, but with this dialog, he can secretly wish to enjoy the ease and harmony some bahai people transmit simply by the way they are.

I dont know if there is a perfect manner on how to invite somebody to
a greater well-being, if not by simply living it, litterally before his eyes.

I remember a sentence of Surah al-ashab (the companions) where
the "teacher to be" is told by Baha'u'llah: lift up the veil carefully, but if you feel a clamor (contrary winds), close the opening of the bottle (stop talking).

Can an highly experienced psychologist really help a person he sees for a first time, in one or two minutes ? I doubt it. Some friends (members) suggested that we should wear a little insignia or a special suit. What do you think ? Should not we be all about the same "color" ?


Majnun.
.

NolF
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Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2005 8:49 am

Postby NolF » Fri Oct 21, 2005 2:58 am

majnun wrote:Do you think that in one minute anybody can trigger
or wake a genuine spiritual interest in another person
who's brain has been either sleeping or whirling around
for years ?

I don't think in one minute you going to make a person love the Bahai Faith, but atleast will know something about it, which could lead in further questions etc...


Then i also want to add that, is not a formal presentation of the Faith, but just for example some classmate comes and askes you about the Faith (for example yesterdays which was Holy Day :D ) and since they don't know about it, and their patience would not be longer than 30sec to 1 minute, would be nice to have something to introduce the Faith. However if you recond that 1 minute is to short it can always be longer :). In todays society, mostly with many young teenagers is complicated to awake their spiritual intersts in these way, but since they know a little about it, in further experiences of their life they might do more research and get interested... Although it's not want I'm expecting from them, but just a little notion about in what religion I believe in.

majnun
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Postby majnun » Fri Oct 21, 2005 9:57 pm

.
It is possible.
Maybe a sentence well placed, the right words choosen
by you on that occasion, it may open a door, or touch
that person to the point where the person wish to know
more.
If this occurs, it may also mean that your own
natural undersanding of life has reached a higher level,
and that probably, you live with detachement from current customs,
therefore bypassing the common intellectual barriers.

After 2 years, all this is new for me, and I am still learning.

Majnun.

Baha'i Warrior
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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Sat Oct 22, 2005 2:29 pm

As you know, really our only obligation as Baha'is is to let other people know about the Faith, even if it is just done casually (for example, "Oh yeah, I'm a Baha'i...) If the other person does not ask, "What is a Baha'i?", then that is okay, because you have done your duty. And now it is his responsibility to seek out more information about the Faith, even if he has no interest. I have read somewhere in the Writings that say that your friends and people that were close to you (in this world) will torment you in the next for not telling them about the Baha'i Faith. Something to that affect. Maybe someone could locate that quote? But anyway, it's pretty clear that we just need to get the word out, but it is preferable to select out a few people (close friends) that you will try to make them strong supporters of the Cause of Baha'u'llah, i.e. Baha’is, as the Guardian says we should do. Ideally, you would want to bring someone new into the Faith every year.

Keyvan
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Postby Keyvan » Sat Oct 22, 2005 9:57 pm

it depends on the person. theres no general way.

of course, that is why our critics tend to say that bahais never give them a straight answer sa to our beliefs....because theres no mechanised response such as:

"we believe Jesus is the Son of God and He died for our sins"

or

"we believe there is no God but Allah and Muhammad is His Prophet"


i tend to explain how there have been hundreds of thousands of prophets in the past, all enriching their region or tribe. over time proximity became less relevent and prophets began spanning greater expanses of land, but all of the same source. then i name the most recent that we know of and their area (e.i. Muhammad - middle east, Krishna - the indian sub continent). and explain how they were all built with a mechanism, a prophecy of one that would come and unify the faiths of each land together. that is, not for one expanse of land, but for the whole world itself once and for all, to create a world order under continuing Divine Guidence, healing the world of all ills, and bringing Divine Peace and Justice. i say that is what we believe in, we believe Baha'u'llah was that Promised One, and we are the ones who follow the Divine ordainances and blueprint to build His world order

Andeeve

Short Intro on what Baha'i is

Postby Andeeve » Tue Oct 25, 2005 8:26 am

A few short intros I have heard used or used myself:

The Baha'i faith is a world religion that is working towards uniting the peoples of the world

Baha'is believe that all relgions come from God and therefore each one represents chapters in Gods book of wisdom to humanity

Baha'is believe that the world is one country and mankind its citizens.

Baha'is believe that world peace is inevitable and are working towards this end...

The Baha'i faith is your highest hopes for humanity that previously you thought were impossible to achieve.


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