The nature of "planning" and the role plans play in the Bahá'í concept of governance and human progress; four broad categories of guidance that Shoghi Effendi used when overseeing global plans; 'functional components' of his planning efforts.
About: This article first briefly explains the nature of "planning" and the role plans play in the Bahá'í concept of governance and human progress. The Bahá'í Faith is perhaps the most "planning-oriented" of all the major religions. Historical reasons explain the Bahá'í orientation toward plans, and the article will suggest a few of these reasons as well as indicate several ways in which Shoghi Effendi could be called a "planner." The second major part of this article describes four broad categories of guidance that Shoghi Effendi used when overseeing three global plans and suggests ways that Shoghi Effendi's example offers practical lessons for others who must plan for their lives, their communities. or their organizations. The article draws these lessons from an examination of letters and cables that Shoghi Effendi wrote concerning global plans. The methodology of this part of a larger overall research project is to examine the plan-related writings of Shoghi Effendi in relation to three global plans initiated in the last phase of his life and to compare these findings with more general knowledge about the planning process, as interpreted through the academic planning literature and the author's experience. This article will explain the overall categories or 'functional components' that can be used to categorize planning components of Shoghi Effendi's efforts during three global plans.