Jan 9-13, 1996
Talisman emails received 1/9/96 -------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 08 Jan 1996 22:18:43 -0700 To: Don_R._Calkins@commonlink.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Gordon McFarlane) Subject: Re: email@example.com Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu >> Did anybody NOT get it? >I didn't. >I feel left out.
>Don C Deer Don; I ain't heard nothin' from nobody neither. But I ain't slighted in the least. Seems t' me nobody's capable of divertin' these here itellectshual's on Tallisman from foccusin' on more important matters. I just gotta say that nobody ain't welcome in my nayberhood. LBG's Gord. --- Gordon McFarlane e-mail: MCFARLANE@upanet.uleth.ca Public Access Internet The University of Lethbridge =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 00:15:04 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: "Eric D. Pierce" Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: Re (2): Jonestown & Mossedegh [+ watergate!] Eric-- Thanks for the post and send my regards to your Kirmani friend (my grandfather is actually from a town just a few short miles away -- Rafsanjan). As regards to Mossadegh, I too think the role of the CIA is often exagerated by Iranian expatriates, nevertheless we have the testimony of the chief Agency operations-man, Kermit Roosevelt, in _Countercoup_ and the Shah's telling comments after the coup such that he owed his thrown to Mr. Roosevelt and co. I also agree that religion had a big part to do with the coup, especially since Ayatollah Borujerdi and other religious hardliners in the majlis withdrew out of the National Front, becoming in effect Mossadeq's opposition and thus opening up the field to the royalists and arch-monarchist mullas like Falsafi. However, Mossadeq enjoyed the overwhelming support of most urbanites, contrary to what the Shah and most later analysts have said -- the 1952 mini-revolution which brought him back to power after he had been briefly dismissed by the Shah over the resulting national/international fiasco subsequent to the nationalization of oil is ample testimony to this fact. Mossadegh was by no means a communist, or a fellow-traveller for that matter -- this is myth, pure and simple. Mossadegh was a nationalist liberal-democratic politician through and through and one imbued with the values of the the Constitutionalist Revolution of 1905-9. I highly encourage you to read his autobiography which was recently translated with an introduction by Homa Katouzian. Vested interests such as those belonging to the monarchists and hard-core conservative foreign policy pundits in this country are the ones who have insisted/and are insisting on Mossadegh's "red" connection. There was none, and they know it! He was an aristocrat by birth, for God's sake. They base their evidence on the fact that in Mossadeq's second cabinet some of the important portfolios where given to prominent members of the Tudeh Party. This was nothing more than political maneouvering on Mossadegh's part in order to keep the Tudeh in line, which left to its own devices was out of control and could have possibly started another civil war in the country (remember, the Soviet Republics of Kurdistan & Azerbaijan where still fresh in the memories of the Tudeh and, more importantly, Stalin was still alive although on his last death-throes). Certain elements dispute this evidence by stating that the ultra-right-wing proto-Hizbullah, Fadayeen-i Islam, were just as dangerous, and somewhat popular, as the Tudeh. Maybe...but the Fadayeen-i Islam weren't interested in delivering the country to the Soviets either, thus Mossadegh's delicate position in the whole scheme of things. Btw, the Kangaroo-court convened after the coup which indicted Mossadegh and his right-hand-man, Dr Hussein Fatemi (he was executed), was never able to produce a shred of evidence of any soviet connection -- these were fabrications later made by the Shah and the royalists (see his pitable attempt at producing evidence in _Mission for My Country_ and _Answer to History_). On the Baha'is benefitting from the August 1953 coup d'etat: I seriously doubt it, since the Baha'is still enjoyed an official second-class, nay third-class, status and soon after the coup the shah let loose Falsafi and the religious hard-liners in the military against the Baha'is to divert the publics attention from a pending oil deal the government was making with foreign companies -- although, I guess, the only Baha'is who really benefitted where millionares with previous ties to the court like Habib Sabet (he, btw, helped the Shah during his brief stay in Rome just prior to the coup), later Hojabr Yazdani and others. Pretty interesting stuff... Nima =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 22:39:11 +1300 To: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Robert Johnston) Subject: Re: Secret of Divine Civilization Dear Juan, The passage submitted is undoubtedly part of a work of considerable scholarship, and for this it receives my humble admiration. I'd like to ask a about something in the last part of the passage, and make a comment. At 12:35 AM 9/1/96, Juan R Cole wrote: > `Abdu'l-Baha begins his Secret of Divine Civilization by >praising reason or intellect (`aql) In both the >Qur'an and in Greco-Islamic philosophy, knowledge and the intellect >are prized. Into this >humanist rationalism of the urbane Islamic tradition, the tradition of >Avicenna, Suhrawardi and Mulla Sadra, `Abdu'l-Baha infuses the >nineteenth-century notion of civilizational progress. (1) Humanist rationalism? Please, what exactly is humanist rationalism? (2) 'Abdu'l-Baha actually praises intellect AND wisdom: "Praise and thanksgiving be unto Providence that out of all the realities in existence He has chosen the reality of man and has honored it with intellect and wisdom, the two most luminous lights in either world." Earlier I commented on the opening paragraphs: "[The] power of mind (characterised to intellect and wisdom, which I take to be science/arts and religious values respectively) enlightens the world...." I think the bird's two wings, faith and knowledge, are clearly indicated. Best wishes, Robert. =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 22:58:43 +1300 To: SFotos@eworld.com, email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Robert Johnston) Subject: Re: S.E.I.A.P.M.R.D. & M.M.A-I,& G. At 6:39 PM 8/1/96, SFotos@eworld.com wrote: >Dear friends, > >Don't you think that this post by Terry on Shoghi Effendi is exactly the type >of work which should appear in an e-zine? > And Gordon's, "Myth, metaphor, anti-intellectualism & gender." Robert. =END= From: "Steven Kolins" To: email@example.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 06:58:20 EST Subject: Explaining banshee Dear Folks, I have no earthly idea why someone takes a microphone and asks 200 people what a partner in a private conversation meant with what they said. I always trusted that private means just that private! To explain the matter: English is my second foreign language. I looked banshee in the dictionary and sent a private joke. Little did I know that we all have different understanding what is private. Heaven forbid that talisman be infested with backbiting. So, if you have any questions of me, please ask. Thank you. QUANTA DAWN-LIGHT All I need is Freedom of spirit, Chastity of soul, and Purity of heart. A pov is not even secondary. =END= From: Alethinos@aol.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 08:31:02 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Jim's reforms With the suggestion that Houston etc. have *seen* great success. I would suggest that we could string out a long list of *great successes!!* here; Atlanta, Oregon, California, Florida, N. Carolina, etc, etc, etc. All have flared up to the excitment and hope of all of us, and to great fanfare. All have died away. Reread the message from the House Ridvan 1984. Also, if you read carefully I never said it WON'T happen; I said it will not happen IF we continue down this same road. And phrases that have lost any real meaning such as *rally around* and *give loving support* etc., will not bring success. I submit sir that it is very much like a football game. If the team is down by three touchdowns at the half the last thing the couch wants to spend his precious fifteen minutes doing is needlessly praising the few good things the team has done. Mention them - sure. But the point of the halftime is to discover and correct those elements of the game strategy that are not working - so that victory can be attained. jim harrison Alethinos (sorry for ignoring other messages but AOL is having terrible email problems.) =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 07:38:58 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Marguerite K. Gipson) Subject: RE: Hello all, I have this dear Bahai women friend, who knows the Writings inside out and backwards... Can pin-point to the paragraph almost anything in the Writings..... It is truely amazing what she can do. However, she was head-injured as child... (now an middle-age adult) and not your social butterfly and completely unaware of most day to day *just living* things. Things you and I do without thinking for being normal folks. But she is probably one of the most steadfast believers that I know. Truely amazing. And if she had a computer and an Internet connection. I bet she give the Intellects a run for their money... or at least be on the level to really pick your brain... lol lol At one of the recent conferences I attended,--nothing real big, just us local folks, a group of us realized that the Bahai Faith would be the only place this gal would fit for the simple reason that we have to look at the good qualities a person has and forget the rest... I attended a local church for a while with a friend, and they did not have anyone *challenged* at all, from what I could see. All looked normal. No one in a wheelchair, on crutches,--and not even pregnant! Gad's you go to some large Bahai Function, and tons of preggies there... LOL LOL I asked my friend about the church (small about 40 members) if they admitted *challenged* people. None that he knew of, as he was a member for over 8 years. Strange! And as we have more EBT we could get and will get the whole gambit of our society. Just a thought, Margreet At 12:32 AM 1/9/96 EST, Steven Kolins wrote: >The only person who enabled me to understand the station of >Baha'u'llah with his deep love and awesome knowledge of the >Revelation is a man who was considered mentally-ill and who has been >living in a tipi for years. He was always shunned and treated less >than kindly manner by mind-experts (psychologist, psychiatrists, >family therapists) in our community. It has made me revolt against >this type of people. If found them so engrossed in their ego as >experts that they were failing to attract me to the Faith. But, I owe >my deepening to the underdog, in this case. Mental giants can be >spiritual dwarfs. This is my few pennies worth on the subject. >In fact a few years later, these experts thenselves looked pretty >pathetic, mentally. But, my heart goes out to them. > >Quanta Dawn-LightAll I need is Freedom of spirit, Chastity of soul, and Purity of >heart. A pov is not even secondary. > =END= From: Geocitizen@aol.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 11:32:58 -0500 To: email@example.com Subject: quick note (yes, email problems) Due to AOL having some kind of nasty technical problem, the dates on the talisman messages in my inbox jump from 01/05 to 01/09, and I was able to quickly scan only a few of the messages posted between Friday and Tuesday. Thus my replies will also be quick and to the point, and clustered in this one message. On fascism To Quanta: Nothing in my comments was meant to suggest "we should be thankful because we are not being shot, imprisoned, gassed, etc." (my paraphrase of your characterization of why my comments offended you so very deeply). The pain that Baha'is have experienced because their institutions and communities are immature has been very real, and I make no effort to deny that. I simply object to the statement that anything Baha'i institutions have done is "identical in every dimension to fascism." To Tony: While I appreciate your efforts to praise me, I think it premature to conclude that you and I have reached deep agreement on this issue. You still clearly believe that "identical in every dimension to fascism" is a fair characterization of the beliefs of a significant number of Baha'is, both individually and at institutional levels. I most emphatically do not share this belief. It paints the world in stark colors of black and white: there are those who see the One True Meaning of the Baha'i Faith as a movement to re-spiritualize liberal democracy without changing any of its basic theories about the role of the individual in society, and there are those who have other ideas, and can thus safely be characterized as fascists. This strikes me as an oversimplification. There are conceptions of society which are both *not* liberal-democratic and *not* fascist. Regards, Kevin =END= From: AGhosh@uh.edu Date: Tue, 09 Jan 1996 10:41:31 -0600 (CST) Subject: Re: Jim's reforms To: firstname.lastname@example.org Well, I am not so old a believer to make a list of successes and my experiece is limited to Houston. But from what I can see whenever an effort has died out it is due to: 1. Criticism: of the "on-fire" bahais of so-called "in-active" bahais and 2. Criticism: of the "old-methods" against the "new-methods" and 3. Criticism : of the "new-methods" against the "old-methods". =END= From: "Cary E. Reinstein" To: "Talisman@indiana.edu" , "Member1700@aol.com" Subject: RE: How to be an adult Baha'i? Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 08:33:43 -0800 My analogy was a little weak in the particulars. I was just trying to get across a feeling of respect and appreciation and no more than that. 'member, I'm just a technical writer. Uh oh, if any of you have used any software manuals from my esteemed employer recently, my credibility as a clear communicator will be utterly shot . Hannah ================================= "There are worlds out there where the sky is burning, the seas sleep, and the rivers dream; people made of smoke, and cities made of song. Somewhere there's danger; somewhere there's injustice, and somewhere else the tea is getting cold! Come on Ace, we've got work to do!" -- Dr. Who #7 ------------------------- Ethernet (n): something used to catch the etherbunny ---------- From: Member1700@aol.com[SMTP:Member1700@aol.com] Sent: Monday, 08 January, 1996 10:06 AM To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: How to be an adult Baha'i? I certainly appreciated Hannah's analogy concerning parents/children, etc. However, I feel that the challenge today is to figure out how to be a Baha'i and also be an adult, not a child. The Baha'i community is full of capable and dynamic people who have achieved much in their own right. To regard the community as a collection of children is to ignore that potential. Tony =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 11:42:36 -0500 (EST) From: Juan R Cole To: Robert Johnston Cc: email@example.com Subject: Re: Secret of Divine Civilization On Tue, 9 Jan 1996, Robert Johnston wrote: > > (1) Humanist rationalism? Please, what exactly is humanist rationalism? Just as in Christianity one has the anti-intellectual tradition of Tertullian, rejecting reason and the autonomy of the individual, who is reduced to nothingness before the Revelation, so in Islam Ibn Qudama and others condemned the use of rational tools to approach religion (and even the parts of the world already legislated in Islam by religion). A competing current of thought celebrated the human and the use of reason, seeing these things as gifts of God. Miskawayh and Abu Hayyan at-Tawhidi are examples. Avicenna's philosophy held that a human being by attaining insights into the universals could eventually become "divinized" (muta'allih). Thus, studying philosophy and science was part of a path toward divinization. This idea was continued by Mulla Sadra, the 16th-17th century School of Isfahan and to some extent by the Shaykhis. In 19th century Iran, Tertullianism reigned among the religious classes and even many notables, rejecting reason and humanism in favor of the awful all-reducing power of Quranic revelation. This view led to a rejection of science and technology. `Abdu'l-Baha in SDC is arguing for the goodness and autonomy of Reason. This autonomy is not absolute, but delegated, insofar as individual human reason is ultimately a reflection of the Universal Intellect. But the point is that the intellect can legitimately invent and use the telegraph. (Believe it or not, Shi`ite clergy attempted to forbid the use of such technologies insofar as they were not mentioned in the Qur'an and derived from a foreign unbelieving civilization.) > > (2) 'Abdu'l-Baha actually praises intellect AND wisdom: > > "Praise and thanksgiving be unto Providence that out of all the realities > in existence He has chosen the reality of man and has honored it with > intellect and wisdom, the two most luminous lights in either world." "intellect" here is a translation of "da:nish," which would be better translated "knowledge." "wisdom" is "hu:sh," which means "understanding, judgment, intellect" neither one has any particularly faith-related connotations, though it is certainly true that `Abdu'l-Baha thought religion and Reason were or could be in essential accord with one another (and here he differed from many Shi`ite clerics). One problem is that Mazieh Gail's translation is not very technical, and so can be misleading for anyone who wants to use it for serious philosophical purposes. cheers Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 18:24:04 +0200 (IST) From: Sean Molloy To: Talisman@indiana.edu Cc: Christopher Buck Subject: Re: Shortening the Duration of War Here is a quote about Baha'is hastening the Lesser Peace: 284. Baha'u'llah's Order is the Sovereign Remedy "He cannot urge upon you all sufficiently...the importance of the Baha'is realizing that direct, concentrated and efficiently carried out Baha'i work is not only their supreme duty but the best way they can serve the interest of humanity and hasten the day when at least the Lesser Peace will become a reality. We must always bear in mind that Baha'u'llah's Order is the sovereign remedy, and all other measures...inaugurated by the United Nations or various governments, are in the nature of palliatives, however sound and progressive they may be. We must concentrate on perfecting our characters as individual Baha'is, and on maturing our still embryonic, and as yet improperly understood World Order; on spreading the Message, according to the provisions of the Divine Plan; and on building a tightly knit world-wide Baha'i Community..." (From letter written on behalf of the Guardian to the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States and Canada, May 9, 1947: Principles of Baha'i Administration, pp. 87-88) This is taken from Helen Hornbys "Lights of Guidance". Sean =END= From: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Tue, 09 Jan 1996 12:08:01 EST To: email@example.com Subject: talisman subscribe Please subscribe me back on! Thanks, Sohrab Mogharrabi firstname.lastname@example.org =END= Date: Tue, 09 Jan 96 10:03:01 -0500 From: "Ahang Rabbani" To: email@example.com Subject: Another in place of Baha'u'llah [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] Derek wrote: > Baha'u'llah in one passage warns the people of Iran if they > deal with Him as they dealt with the Bab, Another was ready to > take His place ... I recall seeing this too, but not in English. Could someone please provide citation for English translation? many thanks, ahang. =END= From: AGhosh@uh.edu Date: Tue, 09 Jan 1996 11:26:00 -0600 (CST) Subject: Re: youth conference To: firstname.lastname@example.org I attended the youth conference partly, partly I was teaching in the Amatul-Baha Crusade in the Dallas Area. It was wonderful and second only to my experience in World Congress just after my declaration. However, if you want to channel the energies of youth into teaching. the criticism of the institutions is not the place to start. They do love their NSA and if this word has lost its meaning, may be the Bahai Faith has. Love Arindam =END= From: email@example.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 96 06:42:41 PST Subject: RE: Myth, metaphor, anti-intellectualism & gender. To: firstname.lastname@example.org, Gordon McFarlane On Mon, 08 Jan 1996 18:21:04 -0700 Gordon McFarlane wrote: Yahoooo! Of course it all comes out as in a flood, Gordon, as if you've been storing it up and so much is there. I hope you are writing a book. I hope we hear more and in neater pieces, now that you've done the all-at-once overview. In myth and metaphor I find the unity of the world's religions. I wish as much were an authoritative Bahai teaching. I seems like it sort of is, at least it is an allowable interpretation. Is there any scripture or interpretation to support? More on the stuff about Tahirih. More on the figures which appeared to the manifestations. Thanks Philip ------------------------------------- Name: Philip Belove E-mail: email@example.com Date: 01/09/96 Time: 06:42:42 This message was sent by Chameleon ------------------------------------- Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 12:59:01 -0600 (CST) From: Saman Ahmadi To: talisman Subject: Iran Dear Nima, Eric and All, I once heard a theory that the reason for the U.S.'s more or less hands off policy during the '79 revolution was that it was thought the rising fundamentalist movement in Iran would stimulate similar feelings in the bordering, and pre-dominantly Muslims, Russian provinces and therefore would help destabilize the Soviet government - the U.S. listening posts in northern Iran were a small price to pay. regards, sAmAn =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 14:47:53 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: Talisman@indiana.edu Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Materials... Dear friends-- Sorry to post again; forgot to ask in the last one. Is Browne's _Materials for the Study of the Babi Religion_ still in print? And if so, who's the publisher? Nima =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 14:44:32 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: Talisman@indiana.edu Cc: email@example.com Subject: Nuqtatul-Kaf (Browne's translation) Dear friends-- I'm looking for a copy of Browne's translation of Haji Mirza Jani Kashani's _Nuqtatul-Kaf_ and having a hard time tracking one down. Does anyone know which university library in North America has a copy I can order through the unm i.l.l.? Also, if you can give full bibliographic info, and an OCLC # if possible, I'd sure appreciate it. Thanx! Sorry to those who are getting a multiple copy of this message. Regards, Nima (enjoying a dry 68 degrees farenheit New Mexico "Indian Summer") =END= Date: Tue, 09 Jan 96 15:30:01 -0500 From: "Ahang Rabbani" To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: dirty paper [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] I have a piece of writing in the hand of Quddus (the only extant sheet to my knowledge) and need to "clean" it for publication. The paper used by Him is a bit dark and when its copied the background looks dirty. Someone in my office suggested scanning the text and then cleaning "dirty" background. Can any of the technical folks on Talisman explain what I need to do? thanks for your help, ahang. =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 11:17:03 +1300 (NZDT) To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Robert Johnston) Subject: search machine Talismans, There is an excellent search machine at http://sunsite.unc.edu/bahai-bin/true-seeker.pl Robert =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 11:11:52 +1300 (NZDT) To: Juan R Cole From: email@example.com (Robert Johnston) Subject: Re: Secret of Divine Civilization Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Juan, Behind my interrogation of the absence of a reference to the word Mazieh Gail translated as wisdom is an awareness that in Greek and Baha'i thought (linked through Islamic scholarship) human being are thought of as being essentially ethical and intellectual agents. Aristotle wrote (see partic. N. Ethics) that the human virtue (spirit, we might say) is intellectual and ethical; and 'Abdu'l-Baha (in BWF, p. 283) said: "Regarding the 'two wings' of the soul: These signify wings of ascent. One is the wing of knowledge, the other of faith..." Using John's view that religion (faith) is primarily a source of ethical teachings, the similarity of the Greek and Baha'i viewpoints is more easily seen. "Wisdom" spins on ethical considerations: "The essence of wisdom is the fear of God, the dread of his scourge and the apprehension of His justice and decree." I feel that your statement rather too easily ignores the TWO realities mentioned by 'Abdu'l-Baha. Obviously I have no problem with Mazieh Gail's viewpoint. At the very least she has supplied "something"! ;-} The Greek conception of rationality incorporates both realities. Best wishes, Robert. =END= Date: Tue, 09 Jan 96 16:12:27 CST From: Milissa Subject: Re: Nuqtatul-Kaf (Browne's translation) To: Sadra Cc: email@example.com Hi Nima Sadra-- Wanted to let you know that the KSU library owns a copy of this book, which I have borrowed in the past. Your library should have no problem borrowing it for you through Interlibrary Services! Your friend, Milissa firstname.lastname@example.org =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 11:35:42 +1300 (NZDT) To: "Steven Kolins" , email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Robert Johnston) Subject: Re: Explaining banshee Dear Quanta, I do not carry in my heart any desire to turn an innocent mistake centering on a desire on my part of correct my error and to acknowledge your helpfulness in this into a colourful display of public acrimony. I hereby tell the WHOLE UNIVERSE that I am sorry I upset you. Very sorry ;-} Best wishes to Ruth. In friendship, Robert. =END= From: email@example.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 96 10:45:05 PST Subject: humility, forgiveness, etc. To: firstname.lastname@example.org Cc: email@example.com, Jim Blake <firstname.lastname@example.org>, email@example.com This is a long posting. I'm trying to work out personal issues, spiritual issues, Talisman issues and the anwers to all the world's problems. So, to those of you who bear with me, in advance I thank you. I'm going to talk about humility, how it connects to forgiveness, how they both connect to spirituality, what that connection tells me about the nature of spiritual issues, and what all of that tells me about my relationship with certain of the friends, and also about some of the Talismanic complaints about the institutions. One day, when my daughter was 11 and sick and tired of hearing me explain how she should behave, she declared her room off limits to me and to remind me to stay out, she put up a sign, "No adults Aloud." It was a double message. As a new Bahai, I've run into more experienced Bahai's tell me that I was not allowed to protest against their action in "that tone of voice." Therefore, I've welcomed all the Talisman protests about not being allowed to protest, not being allowed to question the actions of the institutions, and at not being allowed to think and speak critically without fear of censure or punishment. Now I want to argue for the other side. I know that, when things don't go my way and I don't get what I want, in my own remarkably adult, articulate, witty and sophisticated mature style, I can throw a hell of a trantrum. Although I hate admitting it. But this is what I was talking about in my last posting when I talked about the double humiliation of feeling wronged and then being wrong for making for a fuss. I should know better. After all, if you are being wronged, why feel humiliated, isn't it enough to just feel wronged? It's a pride thing. It's a guy thing.Humiliation seems to be a deep part of the program to further my spiritual development, the unpleasant way I seem best to aquire humility. "You can't "do" humility," is what Jame Hillman said, meaning that you couldn't just decide to be humble, that it was a deeper quality than that. But I'm still trying to find the middle way to think about this. Both sides seem to feel wronged. So maybe the Dialogue Team did get out of line. (I'm just saying this for the sake of making another point, okay? ) And maybe the letter to the NSA didn't show quite the degree of love, honor and respect the house was due. And maybe in my pain I have been really But But.But. Who am I to expect ordinary wronged ones to act like The Most Wronged One? I think a lot about forgiveness. I whine that there isn't enough in my world. And rarely do I acknowledge that I could be one of the responsible for increasing the level of forgiveness in my corner of the world, whatever I think forgiveness is. I think, forgiveness is what keeps people from over-correcting. That's an engineering definition, as in, "this is a very forgiving car to drive." Forgiveness means you don't have to worry about occassionally over-reacting. It means you can make a lot of little mistakes and still things go smoothly. It is something that dampens your sensitivity, without dulling your sensitivity. Forgiveness works like shock absorbers do in a car. Stick with me now, this metaphor is not as far fetched as you think and not as mechanical either. There are subtleties I'm trying to articulate. The main one is that there is a multi-level reality to forgiveness. Forgiveness is something that happens at a higher level than ordinary responsiveness. In a car, your suspension system works on two levels. The first level is the springs. Springs give you something in between the wheels and the frame. That way, when you hit a bump the wheels give, the axle doesn't break.The springs absorb the shock. Why then do you need something called "shock absorbers"? It is because, in the two level system the springs absorb the shock to the wheels and the shock absorbers absorb the shock to the springs. If your car doesn't have shock absorbers, every time you hit a bump the car sproings uuuup and then dooown, then uuup and dooown, then uup and doown and finally up and down -- and all the while it is slightly out of control.This additional layer of responsiveness smooths everything out. So if you say, it has a very forgiving suspension system it means that it handles a lot of big bumps without a lot of perturbance. In engineering, a systen that is "forgiving" is one that corrects itself without over-correcting. Go one more metaphor with me so I can show you this double level thing. An automatic pilot automatically turns on whenever you are 10 degrees off course. So if you drift off course to the left, the pilot turns the wheel and holds it turned until you are ten degrees off to the right at which time the pilot corrects in the other direction and you go back and forth, never really on course, always correcting and then over-correcting your previous error. This is an unforgiving auto-pilot. To built a forgiving one, you'd need a second system to monitor the first and when the second system sees the first one osccilating, it slows down the correcting actions of the first system. That's how forgiveness works. Bam! you get hit. Youch! you respond. But you don't hit back and you don't run. Your forgiveness allows you to do two things, to react, but also to do more than just react. So now I'll repeat what I said a few paragraphs earlier. Forgiveness means you don't have to worry about occassionally over-reacting. It means you can make a lot of little mistakes and still things go smoothly. It is something that dampens your sensitivity, without dulling your sensitivity. And now, back to the main theme. I do expect the institutions to be more forgiving than the rest of us folks. My protest is that occassionally I don't think they are forgiving enough. And when they are not forgiving enough, I suspect not enough humility. And further, I expect the infallible ones to be perfectly forgiving. And finally, humility and forgiveness do co-exist at this second level. And I suspect that this second level (wheverever it is) is where spirituality exists relative to worldly and political matters, which I would put at the first level. And so all this is a way for me to work out my position on The Bahai Who Wronged Me, and the Bahai Institutions whom my friends say wronged them. Where I sympathize with Steve, Tony, Juan and others who continue to bring out this wrongs associated with the Encyclopedia, the letter to the NSA, Dialogue and so on,-- and where I sympathize with me -- is that I agree that all of us were probably entitled to treatment that carried more humility, forbearance, tolerance, resiliance, and forgiveness. And where I don't sympathize is where I feel that I ( And I can only speak for myself here) also needed to demonstrate more humility, sympathy, forbearance, tolerance, resiliance and, yes, forgiveness. Feedback will be appreciated. Philip ------------------------------------- Name: Philip Belove E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: 01/08/96 Time: 19:36:30 This message was sent by Chameleon ------------------------------------- Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 15:44:25 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: Saman Ahmadi Cc: talisman Subject: Re: Iran > I once heard a theory that the reason for the U.S.'s more or less > hands off policy during the '79 revolution was that it was thought > the rising fundamentalist movement in Iran would stimulate similar > feelings in the bordering, and pre-dominantly Muslims, Russian > provinces and therefore would help destabilize the Soviet government - the > U.S. listening posts in northern Iran were a small price to pay. Yes, and this was one among many reasons why the Soviets invaded Afghanistan at the end of 1979 -- a bad decision and the beginning of the end for the Soviet empire. Regards, Nima =END= From: AGhosh@uh.edu Date: Tue, 09 Jan 1996 17:13:36 -0600 (CST) Subject: Re:resurrection and renewal To: email@example.com regarding this book I wanted to add an interesting parallel. The Guardian recommended the use of Koran by Sale for gaining a good understanding of Islam. Now Sale's book as I can see treats Muhammad almost as an "impostor". Still it did not deter the Guardian from using its excellent historical analysis. Abbas's book is almost reverent compared to Sale's. Love Arindam =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 16:08:05 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: Milissa Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: Nuqtatul-Kaf (Browne's translation) Milissa, I don't think Browne's _Materials..._ is the same as his translation of _Nuqtatul-Kaf_, they're separate works as far as I know. Browne's _Nuqtatul-Kaf_ is a spurious early history of the Babi movement, the text of which was interpolated by the Azalis. Are you sure it's in _Materials.._? Nima =END= Date: Tue, 09 Jan 96 16:24:39 CST From: MBOYER%UKANVM.BITNET@cmsa.Berkeley.EDU Subject: Re: Nuqtatul-Kaf (Browne's translation) To: Sadra Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Hello again Nima-- sorry I forgot to tell you the bib info on Browne's book! the original 1918 edition is OCLC # 253540 a reprint was made in 1961 OCLC # 5253907 You can tell your librarian that the Kansas State Library's code is: KKS OCLC listed several other libraries, but I do know that K-State will lend their copy out, while I don't know about the others. Happy reading and hope this helped! Milissa Boyer email@example.com =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 17:33:26 -0500 (EST) From: jwalbrid To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: `aql/intellect Juan: If Baha'u'llah is describing Mirza Husayn Khan Mushir al-Dawlah as "a`qal az sa'irin," I think this tells you that "zuhur-i `aql dar kull" needs to be understood as political prudence rather than some more metaphysical concept of "reason" or "intellect." john walbridge =END= From: email@example.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 96 09:42:29 PST Subject: FW: Quddus as 3rd To: firstname.lastname@example.org Holy Moly! This is gorgeous. What does the line about America mean? On Mon, 08 Jan 1996 23:56:33 +0100 (MET) Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl wrote: >Re Three Manifestations: >this bit from Tablets of `Abdu'l-Baha 678-10 may be relevant. > > >O thou who art attracted by the Fragrances of God! > > Give thanks unto God for having revealed unto thee, >in visions, the mysteries of His Kingdom and for having >strengthened thee to attain certain revelations which >show thine utmost attraction and constancy unto this >great Cause. > Verily, the three birds are the three holy souls. The >one on the right is His Holiness the great Bab, the one >on the left is His Honor the Khudoos, the glorious >soul, and the great bird in the middle is the Greatest >Name. The light shining from the Supreme Horizon >is the Beauty of El-Abha. These birds descended from >an infinite height and the nearer they came to earth the >more their majesty and glory became manifest. All nations >were promised by a sure promise and were awaiting >with anxiety and longing the coming of the Promised >One. The two birds accompanying the great bird in >the center signifies that the Bab and His Honor the >Khudoos were both under the wings of the Greatest >name. As those birds descended and their shadows extended >vertically over the expectants, as the sun approacheth >the zenith at noontide, at this time thou hast >seen a majestic being in the form of man upon the back >of the huge bird in the center. This person in the >human form is the "divine station" mentioned in the >Bible: "Let us make man in our image after our likeness." >And the divine lights were reflected from the >reality of the Greatest Name. Although this station >is far from the minds and understandings, yet its lights >are apparent, its rays reflected and its brilliancy manifested >throughout the universe. > The white garments signify holy dignity and a station >sanctified from color, i.e., free from the universal >conditions and material qualities. That luminous countenance, >manifested in beauty, signifieth that the divine >lights shone forth from the human form, which were >reflected and descended upon thee, dazzling the eyes of >those who were perceiving it as the sun dazzles the >eyes of those who try to look upon it. That divine form >manifested itself in America and entered the great >Temple which shall soon be constructed therein. > ------------------------------------- Name: Philip Belove E-mail: email@example.com Date: 01/09/96 Time: 09:42:30 This message was sent by Chameleon ------------------------------------- Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein =END= Date: 9 Jan 96 15:29:02 U From: "Dan Orey" Subject: Results- 1st Interplanetary To: firstname.lastname@example.org Cc: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, SKDapoz@INDYVAX.IUPUI.EDU, email@example.com, SFotos@eworld.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com GatorMail-Q Results: 1st Interplanetary Auction re: 1st Interplanetary Auction / Guatemala Girl's Project Dear Talisfriends - Please accept my apologies for the tardiness in sharing news re:Talisman's 1st Interplanetary Auction. The mail moves slow and I was able to obtain a couple of Greatest Names. First the news, then the details: 1 - I received a number of Greatest Names so anyone offering greater than 70.00 US can have one. 2 - there were eight individuals in three countries who responded with a total of $906.00 US being pledged.This comes out to almost 7 months of funding, and will really help. If you folks who pledged will contact me I will share with you the way to - safely - send funds. And I can send you your BRILLIANTLY COLORFUL Greatest Name! 3 - If others care to donate to the Girls Literacy Project in Highland Maya Guatemala you may send me an e-mail and I will gladly share the stats on how to do so. I am really proud of our effort, and I can safely assume that the good folks in Central America will be most gratified, as well as extremely grateful to all of you who helped-out! This certainly shows that Talisman's deeds are commensurate to our words! In loving service - Daniel Orey (firstname.lastname@example.org) =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 18:43:05 -0500 (EST) From: jwalbrid To: Sadra Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu, email@example.com Subject: Re: Nuqtatul-Kaf (Browne's translation) Browne did not translate Nuqtatu'l-Kaf, although I think there is a list of divergences in his translation of Tarikh-i-Jadid. john walbridge On Tue, 9 Jan 1996, Sadra wrote: > Dear friends-- > > I'm looking for a copy of Browne's translation of Haji Mirza > Jani Kashani's _Nuqtatul-Kaf_ and having a hard time tracking one down. > Does anyone know which university library in North America has a copy I > can order through the unm i.l.l.? Also, if you can give full > bibliographic info, and an OCLC # if possible, I'd sure appreciate it. Thanx! > > Sorry to those who are getting a multiple copy of this message. > > Regards, > Nima (enjoying a dry 68 degrees farenheit New Mexico "Indian Summer") > =END= From: Alethinos@aol.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 19:06:08 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Jim's reforms Dear Mr. G: You are not reading my posts. You are reacting to problems that occurred in Houston and assume that I am in the same line as the *troublemakers*. I suggest a few more questions and a closer reading of the posts. jim harrison Alethinos@ao.com =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 19:02:42 -0500 (EST) From: Juan R Cole To: jwalbrid Cc: email@example.com Subject: Re: `aql/intellect John-jan: There are two places where Baha'u'llah relates the advent of al-`aql/intellect to the end of royal absolutism. The first is the Tablet of Salman, Akka, circa 1868; the other is an untitled Tablet of the late Akka period. The Tablet of Salman speaks of the end of the monarchies as a sign of the advent of "intellect." The second speaks of actual present advent of intellect as a grounds upon which royal absolutism should be tossed in the dustbin of history. In both instances, al-`aql has almost apocalyptic and abstract overtones. I don't think the oral comment to Samandari (which may or may not be reported in exact words) can define the entire semantic field here. cheers Juan On Tue, 9 Jan 1996, jwalbrid wrote: > Juan: If Baha'u'llah is describing Mirza Husayn Khan Mushir al-Dawlah as > "a`qal az sa'irin," I think this tells you that "zuhur-i `aql dar kull" > needs to be understood as political prudence rather than some more > metaphysical concept of "reason" or "intellect." > > john walbridge > > =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 16:06:45 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Doug Myers) Subject: Re: Jim's reforms AGhosh@uh.edu writes: >Well, I am not so old a believer to make a list of successes and my experiece >is limited to Houston. But from what I can see whenever an effort has >died out it is due to: >1. Criticism: of the "on-fire" bahais of so-called "in-active" bahais >and 2. Criticism: of the "old-methods" against the "new-methods" >and 3. Criticism : of the "new-methods" against the "old-methods". > In other words, Disunity? Doug Myers firstname.lastname@example.org "Nothing survives but the way we live our lives." JB =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 17:15:51 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: Talisman@indiana.edu Cc: email@example.com, Masumian@mail.utexas.edu, Noorbakhsh.Monzavi@hibo.no Subject: Reuters 1/9/96 (fwd) > 'IRAN' STORIES >Transmission date: 96/01/09 > 1. 15:27 RAFSANJANI AIDE LAUNCHES MODERATE IRAN WEEKLY > 2. 13:46 IRAN SENDS CONDOLENCES ON MITTERRAND'S DEATH > 3. 12:40 IRAN FOREIGN MINISTER IN AFGHAN TALKS IN PAKISTAN > 4. 10:54 U.N. ENVOY EXAMINES FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION IN IRAN > 5. 07:43 IRAN FOREIGN MINISTER LEAVES FOR PAKISTAN > 6. 04:44 KHARTOUM TRADE FAIR REOPENS AFTER SEVEN YEARS > >=START= XMT: 15:27 Tue Jan 09 EXP: 5 :00 Fri Jan 12 > > > Rafsanjani aide launches moderate Iran weekly > TEHRAN, Jan 9 (Reuter) - A close aide of Iranian President Akbar Hashemi >Rafsanjani has launched a weekly magazine critical of parliament's conservative >majority ahead of Iran's general elections in March. > In its first issue published this week, the magazine Bahman blasted Islamic >conservatives who control parliament for seeing ``their election rivals as >opponents of the revolution, of the state and of any religious government.'' > ``Either we take a such a narrow view...and so every day more people get >off the train of revolution...Or we could adopt a view based on common aspects >so that all groups and individuals could...participate,'' wrote Bahman director >Ataollah Mohajerani, who is vice-president for parliamentary and legal affairs. > Bahman, named after the Iranian month when the February 1979 Islamic >revolution took place, also criticised tough new rules guiding book publishing >adopted a few months ago after hardliners blasted earlier regulations as too >lenient. > It published a caricature showing a man holding a book up as a shield >against oncoming arrows in one hand and throwing his pen in retaliation. > Mohajerani, 41, has been a close aide of Rafsanjani and a long-time >contributor to the daily Ettelaat. He caused an upproar in 1990 by calling in >his column for direct talks with the United States and had to take back his >proposal. > Elections to the 270-seat Majlis, or parliament will be held on March 8. > >=END= > >=START= XMT: 13:46 Tue Jan 09 EXP: 3 :00 Fri Jan 12 > > > Iran sends condolences on Mitterrand's death > NICOSIA, Jan 9 (Reuter) - Iran has offered condolences to France over the >death of Francois Mitterrand, during whose presidency ties between the two >countries were once broken. > President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani sent a message to French President >Jacques Chirac saying: ``While expressing condolences, we wish prosperity and >success to the friendly nation of France.'' > ``We stress our desire to consolidate cooperation between the two >countries,'' added the message, quoted by Iranian television, monitored by the >British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). > In 1987 ties between Tehran and Paris were broken for almost a year over a >spate of bombings in France directed against French support for Iraq in its >1980-1988 war with Iran. > >=END= > >=START= XMT: 12:40 Tue Jan 09 EXP: 2 :00 Fri Jan 12 > > > Iran foreign minister in Afghan talks in Pakistan > (Adds talks in Pakistan, changes dateline) > ISLAMABAD, Jan 9 (Reuter) - Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati >held talks with Pakistani officials on the Afghan conflict on Tuesday soon >after arriving for a two-day visit, Pakistani officials said. > They said Velayati and Pakistani Foreign Minister Assef Ahmad Ali also >discussed bilateral relations and the regional situation. > No details of the talks were immediately available. > Earlier, the state-run Tehran radio said Velayati and Pakistani officials >would also review joint investment projects such as a gas pipeline between the >two countries. > Tehran has been concerned about the rise of Afghanistan's Taleban Islamic >militia that seeks to overthrow President Burhanuddin Rabbani. > Iranian media have accused Pakistan of setting up the militia and Saudi >Arabia of funding it. Both countries deny the charges. > The Taleban accuses Iran of backing Rabbani and said last week that it had >rejected a Tehran offer for mediation. Tehran also denies the charge. > Velayati will go on to Bombay on Thursday for three days of talks with >Indian businessmen and officials. > His visit to Islamabad follows one by Iran's deputy foreign minister >Alauddin Borojardi last month for talks both sides said were aimed at evolving >a common approach to help bring peace to Afghanistan. > Both Pakistan and Iran helped Afghan mujahideen guerrillas in their war to >end Soviet occupation in the 1980s and played host to about five million war >refugees. > Islamabad has often expressed doubts about the legitimacy of President >Rabbani after he disregarded U.N. deadlines to hand over power to a neutral >council last year and while most of the country is ruled by his opponents. > But Borojardi said last month Tehran recognised Rabbani's government as >legitimate while it represented Afghanistan at the United Nations and the >Organisation of Islamic Conference. > The Taleban militia has been besieging Kabul since October and has refused >to make peace with Rabbani until he agrees to step down. > >=END= > >=START= XMT: 10:54 Tue Jan 09 EXP: 0 :00 Fri Jan 12 > > > U.N. envoy examines freedom of expression in Iran > By Sharif Imam Jomeh > TEHRAN, Jan 9 (Reuter) - A U.N. human rights envoy is visiting Iran to >chart the country's respect for freedom of expression, Iranian media and >diplomats said on Tuesday. > State-run Tehran radio said Abid Hussain, United Nations Human Rights >Commission's special rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression, met >Iran's judiciary head Ayatollah Mohammad Yazdi who said Western human rights >organisations should not use their own standards to judge other states. > ``Western countries and human rights organisations cannot use their >own...norms to evaluate all nations without considering their cultures, values, >and intellectual foundations,'' Yazdi was quoted by the radio as telling >Hussain. > He also said the rise in the number of Iranian publications after the 1979 >Islamic revolution was proof Iran respected freedom of expression but >underlined the importance of expressing the right opinion. > ``Islam does not put limitations on...individuals expressing correct >opinions,'' added Yazdi. > Iran has been repeatedly criticised by international human rights bodies >and Western journalists organisations for violating freedom of expression and >press liberty. > Hussain told Reuters he would try to wrap up his visit by Thursday but >declined to give further details about his mission. > Diplomats said Hussain, who is from India, arrived in Tehran at the weekend >and has also been meeting writers, journalists and opposition figures. > Dariush Foruhar, an outspoken critic of the government and leader of the >small secular Iran Nation Party, told Reuters he was scheduled to meet Hussein >later on Tuesday. > The newspaper Akhbar said Hussain met Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar >Velayati on Monday. > It was the second visit by a U.N. envoy since one in 1991 by Salvadorean >jurist Reynaldo Galindo Pohl, the Commission's former special representative on >Iran who criticised human rights violations in the Islamic republic. > Abdelfattah Amor of Tunisia, the Commission's special rapporteur on >religious intolerance, visited Iran in December after Tehran said it no longer >objected to such visits as long as the envoys' reports reflected the truth. > Diplomats said Maurice Copithorne of Canada, who replaced Galindo Pohl last >year, has not yet received an invitation from Iran to visit the country. > The Geneva-based Commission's investigators, some of whom examine broad >themes and others who concentrate on individual countries, have to be invited >by governments before they can make any trips. > >=END= > >=START= XMT: 07:43 Tue Jan 09 EXP: 7 :00 Fri Jan 12 > > > Iran foreign minister leaves for Pakistan > TEHRAN, Jan 9 (Reuter) - Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati left >on Tuesday for a two-day visit to Pakistan to discuss the Afghan conflict, >state-run Tehran radio said. > It said Velayati would meet Pakistani officials to review joint investment >projects such as a gas pipeline between the two countries. > Tehran has been concerned about the rise of the Taleban Islamic militia in >Afghanistan. Iranian media have accused Pakistan of setting up the militia and >Saudi Arabia of funding it. > Velayati will go on to Bombay on Thursday for three days of talks with >Indian businessmen and officials. > >=END= > >=START= XMT: 04:44 Tue Jan 09 EXP: 4 :00 Fri Jan 12 > > > Khartoum trade fair reopens after seven years > KHARTOUM, Jan 9 (Reuter) - Khartoum's international trade fair has reopened >after a gap of seven years, with 120 local companies and 100 foreign firms from >20 countries taking part. > The countries include Iran, Pakistan, Jordan and Kenya and the goods on >display include vehicles, garments and foodstuffs. > Speaking at the inauguration by President Omar Hassan al-Bashir on Monday, >Finance Minister Abdalla Hassan Ahmad said the fair was not only a commercial >gathering but ``a reflection of the depth of relations between the >participating countries.'' > The minister, quoted in the government newspaper al-Sudan al-Hadith on >Tuesday, said it showed Khartoum had broken out of the siege imposed by Western >countries opposed to Sudan's pro-Islamist government. > The fair will last until January 22. > >=END= > > =END= Date: Tue, 09 Jan 1996 17:35:36 -0700 To: Talisman@indiana.edu From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Gordon McFarlane) Subject: Freefall ( Myth, metaphor,etc.) Phil said: >Yahoooo! >Of course it all comes out as in a flood, Gordon, as if you've been >storing it up and so much is there. Gord: (not stored exactly, just dammed and damned by skeptical looks and "This is all quite intriguing, but let's focus on more important and urgent administrative matters" type remarks. I'm grateful to Talisman for allowing me to release some water from the headpond.) >I hope you are writing a book. >I hope we hear more and in neater pieces, Gord: "Oh, for the wonder that bubbles into my soul, I would be a good fountain, a good well-head, Would blur no whisper, spoil no expression." Alas, it is an odd book indeed, certainy not a "neat piece" or a scholarly one. But oh ye men of Talisman - ponder this: I remember reading a passage in the Dawnbreakers prior to my enrollment in the Faith, where, Siyyid Kazim asked Shayk Ahmad - "What is the word that the Qaim shall utter, that shall put the Kings and rulers to flight?" Shayk Amhad answered (I paraphrase) "If that word will put the Kings and rulers to flight - what makes you think you can bear to hear it." I also noted in the footnotes that Shayk Ahmad and Siyyid Kazim applied Kabbalistic interpretations to the Quranic writings regarding the Qaim. Is that correct? Baha'u'llah reveals that word: "The He has now been made manifest in the I". Of course this means Baha'u'llah is the bearer of the Revelation of God. But, metaphorically, could it also mean that the "Divine Name" has been restored? I know nothing of Hebrew. Can any one here tell me if there is a connection between the Hebrew letter "Vau" and the "I", or if the statement that "the manifestation of the He final on earth would be in espousal with Vau, but there is a separation in the present order until that which now hinders shall be taken out of the way", relates in any way to "The He has now been made manifest in the I" PLEASE - SOMEONE HELP ME ON THIS - I'M IN OVER MY HEAD. In view of the two quotes I posted previously: 1. "Though it be forbidden to separate the Heavenly Bride and Bridegroom, even in thought, it is this which has come to pass by reason of the sufferings of Israel, with who Shekinah was destined to endure even from the beginning. . . . the Holy One will remember Israel, meaning he will remember his covenant, which is the Shekinah" (Waite) 2. "The Word has indeed become man. But not until the Word becomes woman, will the world be saved." and, in view of the Hidden word which states "The mystic and wonderous Bride, hidden ere this beneath the veiling of utterance, hath now, by the grace of God and His divine favour, been made manifest even as the resplendent light shed by the beauty of the Beloved. I bear witness, O friends! that the favor is complete, the argument fulfilled, the proof manifest and the evidence established. Let it now be seen what your endeavors in the path of detachment will reveal. In this wise hath the divine favor been fully vouchsafed unto you and unto them that are in heaven and on earth. All praise to God, the Lord of All Worlds. (Hidden Words) And the audacious statement attributed to Tahirih, "I am the word which the Qaim shall utter." Spoken at the conference at Badasht which appears to have been orchestrated by Baha'u'llah and the most significant event of which was Tahirih's appearance and the consequent bruhaha it elicited. And the dual use of the title "Qurratu'l-'ayn" in some of the writings, And the comment and warning by Abd'u'l Baha which preceeds the "Tablet of the Holy Mariner". Why does Abd'u'l Baha preface this most difficult and Mystical of tablets the way he does, and yet offer so little explanation. It is an ever unfolding metaphor. In the Tablet of the Holy Mariner we read that the "The maid of heaven looked out from her exalted chamber . . . And with her brow signed to the Celestial Concourse . . . Flooding with the light of her countenance the heaven and the earth. . . . And as the radiance of her beauty shone upon the people of dust, . . . All beings were shaken in their mortal graves . . . She then raised a call which no ear through all eternity hath ever heard, And thus proclaimed: "By the Lord! He whose heart hath not the fragrance of the love of the exalted and glorious Arabian Youth, Can in no wise ascend unto the glory of the highest heaven. She summons one of her handmaidens and commands her to "Descend into space from the mansions of eternity" and "turn unto that which they have concealed in the inmost of their hearts". She says . . . "Should thou inhale the perfume of the robe from the Youth that hath been hidden within the tabernacle of light by reason of that which the hands of the wicked have wrought, . . Raise a cry within thyself that ALL the inmates of the chambers of Paradise that are the embodiments of the eternal wealth may understand and hearken. Alas, when the favoured damsel descends, in all her adorning, to inhale the fragrance of faithfulness - she finds if not, from these "idle claimants". What are we to make of this? How are we to "study" it? by contextualizing it? I've reached one conclusion (at least for the time being) after reading this numerous times and allowing the metaphor to unfold. That is - we'd better "feminize" our scholarship. Metaphor to metapor; mystery to mystery; world without end, amen. Another talismanian who responded to me privately wrote; "How about this: Abdu'l-Baha refers to Adam as a Manifestation. The knowledge of good and evil comes from the Revelation. Eve gave the fruit of this tree to Adam. Isn't this similar to the heavenly maiden coming to Baha'u'llah in the Siya-Chal? It makes sense to me. LBG's and Best wishes Gord. --- Gordon McFarlane e-mail: MCFARLANE@upanet.uleth.ca Public Access Internet The University of Lethbridge =END= From: "Eric D. Pierce" To: email@example.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 16:47:20 PST8PDT Subject: (Baha'i in S. Africa, 2nd hand) Re: differentiation of lifewor Greetings Blessed Ones, > Date sent: Sat, 6 Jan 1996 13:24:11 -0500 (EST) > From: Juan R Cole > To: firstname.lastname@example.org > Subject: differentiation of lifeworlds ...snip > Talisman has been hard to turn into anything other than a set of > discontinuous conversations. But maybe it would benefit if the old > Dialogue columnists took on specific responsibilities to occasionally > post in their specialties short essays. The Baha'i Faith and the > environment. The Baha'i Faith in post-apartheid South Africa. ... Juan: Dude! Unbelievably awesome post as usual. Some local Baha'is went on a trip to S.Africa last year that was organized as a Baha'i Women's Travel Teaching project. I have been to a couple of informal debriefings where the local Baha'is showed their videos and networked with Baha'is and other friends. They are open to *constructive* criticism about Baha'i stuff, and have been amongst the numerous leading legitimizer-facilitators of local/regional racism healing workshops. One does administration in the remedial public high schools in the disadvantaged community. She said (paraphrase) that with the exception of 1 energetic and really cool "native" NSA member, the S. African national community is dominated by whites and affluent persian refugees that are scared shitless about initiating teaching of "diverse peoples". They were so freaked out by aparthied for so long, that they can't make any sort of major change now that it is starting to go away. The Women's Travel Teaching project (mostly African American women) was the FIRST travel teaching project ever in S. Africa. She said in spite of repeated requests by project members to get into the country, their chaperons tried to trap them in endless non-teaching activities and socializing for weeks, and that finally the project participants had to tell the national chaperons "no more tadik, we are going to go see the people". They took off escorted by the 1 native NSA member, and had some amazing experiences. The CCs supposedly later chastized the S. African admin for not suporting the project better. In the country, the hostility of tribe against tribe was a real eye opener, as was the general chaos, including politics. She had a slightly naive notion before she went that S. Africa was going to be a post-apartheid quasi-utopia and that some sort of black solidarity would suffuse the project. Even though they went to public squares and schools to sing Baha'i songs and talk about the Faith, they were astounded by the emotional withdrawal of *all* the people, white or black. The idea of empowered black women publicly and courageously giving praise and talking about a popular global message of spirituality and hope was simply alien and *stunned* the polite people in various venues. I got the feeling that as far as general society goes, no one there expects anything to work in the end, apartheid or no. They say the youth movement is key, Biko's loss appears to be so very huge, and the less said about Winnie the better even though people will *have* to talk about her. God help us for not starting to get on with building a better world sooner than we have. Any contacts regarding the feasibility of making fund contributions for next year's project expenses should probably be directed to the LSA of Citrus Heights, California. If you want me to get more info about the project, let me know. EP ps, any corrections are appreciated. =END= Date: Tue, 09 Jan 96 19:08:28 From: "Stockman, Robert" To: email@example.com Subject: Maturity of House of Justice I think I agree with Sen here; it depends on how one defines "maturity." Since the word implies the House at some point was "immature," which could be misunderstood, I'm not sure I like the word. But I think the House's powers have clearly evolved. Here are some ways: 1. Experience. Any body gains experience and institutional memory over time. This is especially important to remember when one considers there was not much transition when the House was established, or at least less transition than if the Guardian had lived to serve on the House. 2. Increased size of the staff. Mr. Nakhjavani is fond of saying when he was elected to the House of Justice the Statistics Department was one drawer in his filing cabinet and the Research Department was another drawer. Now the House has a staff of 500. Obviously it can do a lot more with that much more information and resources at its fingertips. Improved communication with the world also helps a lot too. 3. Consider the House's communications since 1963. In 1968 they issued a compilation of Baha'u'llah's messages to the kings. In 1978 or so, they issued a compilation of Shoghi Effendi's messages in *Call to the Nations.* Both times they asked the Baha'i world to distribute these compilatins widely. In 1986 they issued the Peace Statement--the first statement to the world that the House itself wrote--and asked that it be distributed. This seems to suggest growing confidence by the House in its own ability to speak. The House, as it were, is finding its voice. The messages it has been producing since 1980--among them the Social and Economic Development message and the Individual Rights and Freedoms message--are far more complex and challenging than anything it produced earlier, with the possible exception of the Constitution. As for the metaphor "body of Christ," I personally would apply it to the entire Administrative Order, not to the House. Baha'is partake in this "body of Baha'u'llah" every Ridvan when they elect. This makes elections the "Baha'i eucharist." Considering that elections can be--should be--a mystic act, this strikes me as appropriate. -- Rob Stockman =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 18:38:00 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: Talisman Subject: The Guardian re: Hitler Hello, dear ones. Recently one of the friends pointed out that in a letter dated 11 February 1934 written to a member of the NSA of Germany, the Guardian's secretary wrote on his behalf: "There is nothing more contrary to the spirit of the Cause than open rebellion against the governmental authorities of a country, specially if they do not interfere in and do not oppose the inner and sacred beliefs and religious convictions of the individual. And there is every reason to believe that the present regime in Germany which has thus far refused to trample upon the domain of individual conscience in all matters pertaining to religion will never encroach upon it in the near future, unless some unforeseen and unexpected changes take place. And this seems to be doubtful at present." (The Light of Divine Guidance, Vol. I, p. 54) This statement seems to support the view that the Guardian did not appreciate the significance of the threat the German government posed to the German Baha'i community. That is, that despite Shoghi Effendi's assertion that he was "infallible in the protection of the Cause," he badly missed the mark -- on no less a matter than the rise of Hitler! I have read the entire letter in question (it is posted separately) and I want to point out the following. 1. The letter is addressed to a member of the German NSA, and as the Guardian's secretary states at the outset, not only to the entire NSA, but "through them to all the followers of the Faith in Germany." The Guardian directed and anticipated widespread distribution of this letter. It would not have been unreasonable for him to assume that the German government would itself read the letter. 2. The stated purpose of the letter is "to guide our German National Assembly in their efforts to safeguard ... the interests of the Faith..." The purpose of the letter, by its terms, was to protect the Faith from a threat the Guardian perceived. 3. I think that the letter, taken as a whole indicates that the Guardian was extremely concerned about the future of the German Baha'i community. The very date of the Guardian's letter indicates the gravity of the situation. The letter is dated barely 11 days after the original letter from the German NSA member. It is typical to find that the Guardian's responses were not sent for weeks, even months after an inquiry. Here, he felt this matter required his immediate attention. An 11-day turnaround, including transit from Germany to Haifa in 1934, was swift. 4. If the Guardian wasn't worried, why would he send a letter to the entire German Baha'i community guiding them as to how to act in the event that their "inner and sacred beliefs" were to be violated by their government? Rather, he stated that this letter provided the Guardian's "views on the present conditions in that land, and particularly in their relation to the nature and scope of the Baha'i activities of our German believers." 5. The Guardian was fully informed of the "present conditions" in Germany. In fact, fully 7 months previously, in a letter dated 16 May 1933, the Guardian had written through his secretary: "Dear Dr. Muhlschlegel: The Guardian ... does sincerely hope that the reports we receive here about the sentiments rampant in Germany are untrue to fact, that it is a regeneration of the people rather than a retrogression towards a dead past. Because whatever we say of Germany, we have to admit that its people are endowed with a spiritual vitality quite superior to many other races." [The Light of Divine Guidance, Vol. I, p. 47] 6. The letter specifically informs the German Baha'i community how to conduct itself "should the authorities in Germany decide to-day to prevent the Baha'is from holding any meeting or publishing any literature." I submit that a reading of the full text of the letter shows that the Guardian was fully alive to Hitler's threat not only to the German Baha'is, but to the whole world. The purpose of the letter was to awaken the German Baha'is to that threat, and to guide them when the threat materialized. He informed them of what aspects of the Faith could be compromised when government edicts interfered with the activities of the Faith, and what aspects would justify the Baha'is defying their government. I suspect that the intended audience for the particular sentences in question, was the German government itself. We have other examples of where the Head of the Faith knew that the government might read his writings. For example, in the Surah of Blood, where Baha'u'llah identified the persecutors of the previous Prophets, He did not name His own persecutors. It is not unreasonable to infer that He did so for the protection of the Cause. Taking into consideration the state of affairs at that time in Germany; and the Guardian's reference to the rise of nationalism in that country; and the swiftness of his reply to the NSA member's letter; and the content of the Guardian's reply letter; and his specific references to the protection of the Cause, and to the German government's future interference in Baha'i activities; I think that it is a fair reading of the portion of the Guardian's letter in question, that it is a discreet and diplomatic assertion to the government of the rights of the German Baha'is to practice their religion. I personally think this was an admonition to the German government: "And there is every reason to believe that the present regime in Germany which has thus far refused to trample upon the domain of individual conscience in all matters pertaining to religion will never encroach upon it in the near future, unless some unforeseen and unexpected changes take place. And this seems to be doubtful at present. " As the Guardian wrote, he is "infallible in protection of the Faith." And I believe that a full reading of his letter abundantly demonstrates that guidance. Brent =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 18:42:17 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: Talisman Subject: Guardian re: Hitler, #2 11 February 1934 Dear Baha'i Brother, I am charged by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of Jan. 30th as well as for the enclosed pamphlet containing the address delivered by Herr Hitler on Oct. 14th, 1933, on the subject of Germany's attitude towards peace, all of which he read with deepest care and sustained interest. He wishes me to convey to you and to all the members of your German National Assembly and through them to all the followers of the Faith in Germany his views on the present conditions in that land, and particularly in their relation to the nature and scope of the Baha'i activities of our German believers. At the outset it should be made indubitably clear that the Baha'i Cause being essentially a religious movement of a spiritual character stands above every political party or group, and thus cannot and should not act in contravention to the principles, laws, and doctrines of any government. Obedience to the regulations and orders of the state is indeed, the sacred obligation of every true and loyal Baha'i. Both Baha'u'llah and Abdu'l-Baha have urged us all to be submissive and loyal to the political authorities of our respective countries. It follows, therefore, that our German friends are under the sacred obligation to whole-heartedly obey the existing political regime, whatever be their personal views and criticisms of its actual working. There is nothing more contrary to the spirit of the Cause than open rebellion against the governmental authorities of a country, specially if they do not interfere in and do not oppose the inner and sacred beliefs and religious convictions of the individual. And there is every reason to believe that the present regime in Germany which has thus far refused to trample upon the domain of individual conscience in all matters pertaining to religion will never encroach upon it in the near future, unless some unforeseen and unexpected changes take place. And this seems to be doubtful at present. For whereas the friends should obey the government under which they live, even at the risk of sacrificing all their administrative affairs and interests, they should under no circumstances suffer their inner religious beliefs and convictions to be violated and transgressed by any authority whatever. A distinction of a fundamental importance must, therefore, be made between spiritual and administrative matters. Whereas the former are sacred and inviolable, and hence cannot be subject to compromise, the latter are secondary and can consequently be given up and even sacrificed for the sake of obedience to the laws and regulations of the government. Obedience to the state is so vital a principle of the Cause that should the authorities in Germany decide to-day to prevent the Baha'is from holding any meeting or publishing any literature they should obey and be as submissive as our Russian believers have thus far been under the Soviet regime. But, as already pointed out, such an allegiance is confined merely to administrative matters which if checked can only retard the progress of the Faith for some time. In matters of belief, however, no compromise whatever should be allowed, even though the outcome of it be death or expulsion. There is one more point to be emphasized in this connection. The principle of obedience to government does not place any Baha'i under the obligation of identifying the teachings of his Faith with the political program enforced by the government. For such an identification, besides being erroneous and contrary to both the spirit as well as the form of the Baha'i message, would necessarily create a conflict within the conscience of every loyal believer. For reasons which are only too obvious the Baha'i philosophy of social and political organization cannot be fully reconciled with the political doctrines and conceptions that are current and much in vogue to-day. The wave of nationalism, so aggressive and so contagious in its effects, which has swept not only over Europe but over a large part of mankind is, indeed, the very negation of the gospel of peace and of brotherhood proclaimed by Baha'u'llah. The actual trend in the political world is, indeed, far from being in the direction of the Baha'i teachings. The world is drawing nearer and nearer to a universal catastrophe which will mark the end of a bankrupt and of a fundamentally defective civilization. From such considerations we can well conclude that we as Baha'is can in no wise identify the teachings of Baha'u'llah with man-made creeds and conceptions, which by their very nature are impotent to save the world from the dangers with which it is being so fiercely and so increasingly assailed. The Guardian hopes that these brief explanations will be sufficient to guide our German National Assembly in their efforts to safeguard and promote the interests of the Faith, and that through them they will be given a new vision of the Cause and a fresh determination to carry forward its message to the world at large. With greetings and best wishes to you and to all the friends in Germany,... [From the Guardian:] Dear and valued co-worker: I wish to add a few words in loving appreciation of your strenuous, your intelligent and devoted efforts for the spread and consolidation of our beloved Faith. May the Almighty bless your endeavours, deepen your understanding of the essentials and requirements of our beloved Cause, and enable you in these difficult and challenging days to promote its interests and consolidate its institutions, Your true brother, Shoghi (The Light of Divine Guidance, Vol. I, pp. 53-56) =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 19:44:21 -0600 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Bruce Burrill Subject: The Future of God's Faith Huh? Is this the problematic msg that is being talked about? >Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 01:40:08 +0100 >Subject: The Future of God's Faith >To: email@example.com >From: nobody@REPLAY.COM (Anonymous) >Organization: RePLaY aND CoMPaNY UnLimited >XComm: Replay may or may not approve of the content of this posting >XComm: Report misuse of this automated service to > > > >Concerning these times, Baha'u'llah wrote: >"Oppression will enveop the world, and following a universal convulsion, >the sun of justice will rise from the horizon of the unseen realm." >(Advent of Divine Justice, p. 81) >"The world is is travail, and its agitation waxeth day by day, its >face is turned towards waywardness and unbelief.Such will be its >plight, that to disclose it now would not be meet and seemly. >Its perversity will long continue. And when the appointed hour is >come, there shall suddenly appear that which shall cause the limbs of >mankind to quake.Then, and only then, will the Divine Standard be >unfurled, and the Nightingale of Paradise warble its melody." >(Baha'u'llah, Gleanings,pp. 118-119) >The term Sun of Justice and Nightingale of Paradise refer to a coming >Manifestation of God. The term unseen realm refers to the realm of >the Holy Spirit, and the Divinve Standard refers to the Word of God. >These are terms discussed in the Kitab-i-Iqan and elsewhere in the >writings of the Bab and Baha'u'llah. > >Most Baha'is believe that the 1000 years prophecy mentioned in the >Kitab-i-Aqdas begins in 1852, 1863, or 1892--although no date was >ever given for its beginning by Baha'u'llah, Abdul'Baha, or Shoghi >Effendi. However, Shoghi Effendi inferred that a Manifestation could >appear at any time, as recorded by his wife, Ruhiyyih Khanum, Hand of >The Cause, in the Baha'i News, May, 1958: >"The Guardian said to some of the pilgrims, during the last year and a >half or two years, something very strange. He said there are two >Plans: the long term eternal Plan of Almighty God for mankind on >this planet; that is the Plan that has the Prophets of God, the Adamic >Cycle and all of the Great Manifestations of God, like Christ, and >Muhammad, Buddha, Zoroaster, and Moses and so on, bringing us to this >day with the Bab and Baha'u'llah. This is the Mighty Plan of God, >educating humanity and bringing the Kingdom of Heaven on earth on this >planet. He said this is the Plan of God, it goes forward in >mysterious ways, we do not always understand its workings. > Then he said, we have the Divine plane, which is being carried >forward by the Baha'is in the form as we know it; first the two >Seven-Year Plans, and then this Ten-Year Plan--the World Crusade which >we are now engaged upon and part of which has passed. > The Guardian said, who knows, maybe this Great Plan of God will >interfere in the other Plan." > >It is clear that if the Great Plan of God, which is the coming of a >Manifestation, interferes with the present Baha'i Teaching Plans, >then we must confidently expect a Manifestation to appear soon. >We know this to be the Revelation of the Greatest Name, which >in Arabic is BHA', composed of three letters. The Bab said he was the >B (Ba) of the Greatest Name (see Selections from the Writings of >E.G. Browne, by M. Momen, p. 215) and Baha'u'llah said that He was >the H (Ha) of the Greatest Name (se Kitab-i-Iqan, 1954 edtion, > p. 261--Glossary, and in the Seven Valleys and the Four Valleys, > 1952 edition, footnote p. 56). The Third Letter, the A (Alif) is >yet to appear, and when He appears the Revelation of the Greatest >Name will be completed. The 1000 years will begin at that time. > >For further information, write: >Baha'i, P.O.Box 172, Eckert, CO, 81418. U.S.A > > > > > > > > > =END= From: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Tue, 9 Jan 96 18:53:45 PST Subject: Humility and Forgiveness To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com Dear friends, A few further thoughts on the multi-level nature of forgiveness and humility. And, begging your indulgence, I do hope this sort of musing is appropriate for Talisman. It does relate to spiritual matters and I would appreciate some feedback. I am trying to put these ideas into a coherent form to publish and having this audition group to really helps. When I write I try to imagine the Talisman group as a wise audience. I have so much respect for you all. But moving ahead. In this section I'm going to make connections between my ideas about what forgiveness is and brain anatomy. And then I'm going ask about correspondences between brain functioning and spirituality. First a summary. I had said that forgiveness is a form of meta thinking. It is a level up from reacting. It is a form of thinking about feelings. I used the analogy of how shock absorbers dampen the reactions of springs. I also used the analogy of automatic pilots and how they include meta levels of systems, each higher level monitoring and regulating the responses the the level below. Now, about Brain anatomy. Daniel Goleman, Ph.D., who covers psychology for the New York Times, has written a book called Emotional Intelligence in which he talks about the importance of the emotions and their ability to "guide us in facing predicaments and tasks too important to leave to the intellect alone." In discussing what he calls "the basic architecture of mental life," he says that our patterns of emotional behavior are rooted in the "basic neural circuitry of mental life," a "biological template for emotional life" that has remained unchanged for the last 50,000 human generations. So clearly, it has some survival value. I call attention to the biological architecture because, in its functioning, it lines up with the double level process I was describing earlier in my analogy between forgiveness and automobile suspension systems. Just as in the automobile suspension system, and as in automatic pilots there is one system that does the immediate responding and then a second system that modulates the first, so too in the brain. First an overview of brain architecture. The human brain can be thought of a three part organ. The first part is the core, the deepest, most sheltered part, the brain stem, the part closest to the spinal cord that controls basic functions like breathing and metabolism. Here is the ancient survival-oriented brain whose architecture we share not only with mammals, but also with reptiles. No emotions here, just routines and functions. Emotions come with the next layer, the layer that appeared with the early mammals. It circling the reptilian core and accordingly is named the "limbus," latin for "ring." Parts of the limbus are connected to the sense of smell and are called the "rhinencephalon." Smell is the earliest sense used for the basic survival decision: " Eat it, avoid it, or mate it? "an array so basic it's humorous. The limbus contains an almond shaped structure called, "the almond," but in Latin, of course: the "amygdala. Here is how Dr. Goleman describes it's importance: "if the amygdala is severed from the rest of the brain, the result is a striking inability to guage the emotional significance of events....Life without the amygdala is a life stripped of personal meanings." Crowning the limbus is the "new brain, the neocortex, the big folded lobes that are all we see in the brains in the jar in the Frankenstein movie. These lobes are where sensory signals are processed into thought forms, where the pattern of impulses on the optic nerve gets shaped into "things" we "see," where sounds become "words," where thoughts get thunk. Now the amygdala has a relationship with the neocortex, but it also does it's own thinking, a more primitive thinking than cortical thinking, but faster and therefore, with more survival value. It can make us react before we think. It is why we "DUCK!!" first and then ask: "What was that?" When it has a chance, the neocortex "thinks" about the messages from the amygdala and modifies them. And the way it does is most exquisite and balanced. The neocortex has two lobes. The right frontal lobe supports the strong negative actions related to fear and aggression and the left frontal load inhibits them. Acting together, they strength here and hold back there and like a shock absorber controling a set of springs, dampening the action, making it steady, harmonizing emotion and thought, keeping everything in control. So, going back to the original argument, brain architecture also seems to suggest this multi-level analysis of emotions with the raw emotions being the more immediate responses and the refining ones being the more "spiritual" more modulating ones. Forgiveness, then, in my analysis, would be a manifestaion of the neo-cortical activity. I'm not sure where to go from here. We could analyze it further, I would think that we could also test it out by interviewing brain injured people. So I leave here is with this question: If forgiveness can be understood as a meta response to emotions, and if basic emotional responses are refined by high level, self reflective, mediating brain functions, then how would we fit into this model a spiritual quality like detachment? Good night for now And, if you've stayed with me, thank you. Philip ------------------------------------- Name: Philip Belove E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: 01/09/96 Time: 18:53:45 This message was sent by Chameleon ------------------------------------- Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein =END= From: "Steven Kolins" To: email@example.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 21:29:19 EST Subject: Frames of Mind Message from Quanta: Howard Gardner, Author of Frames of Mind created a model of multiple intellect, as follows not necessarily order of importance. 1) Language intellect 2) Musical intellect 3) Kinesatic intellect 4) Logi/mathematical intellect 5) Visual intellect 6) Intra-personal intellect 7) Inter-personal intellect Based on this model and the reference to intellect in the Writings, my understanding is that "intellect" is universal. Each human being may possess varying degrees of the seven categories. Therefore, if someone with greater capacity in language intellect perceive those with greater capacity in kinesatic (dancer, athlete, etc.) intellect, less intelligent, would they be anti-intellectual? QUANTA DAWN-LIGHT All I need is Freedom of spirit, Chastity of soul, and Purity of heart. A pov is not even secondary. =END= From: AGhosh@uh.edu Date: Tue, 09 Jan 1996 20:51:35 -0600 (CST) Subject: Jim's reforms, Houston, Youth Movement and Musings To: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Jim, God forbid I would consider someone who loves Bahaullah as a troublemaker. I am only relating some wonderful events which have occurred in Houston, which transformed the lives of many youths like me and how the wise experienced souls like you can help the youth find their way of service. The efforts in Houston has not died. It was like a match that lighted the first grass, which could not take the heat and burned away. But it sent a few sparks around which kindled some other grass which are simmering and ready to light again in far-flung areas of the country like San-Diego, Seattle and Dallas. Maybe they will burn away too which will send a few more sparks around and finally when the fire is on everyting will be aflame. Basically Houston was a proof-of-concept experiment that entry-by-troops methods painstakingly developed by Dr. Muhajir, Dr. Ahmadiyyah and others work as easily in the United-States as it has worked in other parts of the world. In fact when I was reading the history of large-scale-growth in Columbia it did not differ much from what happened in Houston. Believe me any of the youths like me who has been blessed with the shared moments and leaderships by such teachers as Naina Featherston etc. and the experience of complete strangers saying within five minutes I believe, I have always believed, I am a Bahai are not going to give up teaching no matter what comes in their path. I have met all the youths who passed across Houston during this period in the conference and their heart burns bright and they are ready to take up the challenge. But they also know that right or wrong without the assembly's love or guidance they cannot achieve anything: however immature they are. So if you would desire to help the youth come let us be aglow with the fire which flows from heart to heart. Why not burn away your sorrows with the bright light which shines from the faces which say I believe. Nothing is lost as Naina so painstakingly instilled among us. Everytime you utter the name of Bahaullah a bubble bursts around the souls which are veiled even they seem to reject you. We are living in great times. Why be miserable when we can wing our flight to glory which is rightfully ours. Love Arindam =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 15:59:50 -0900 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Robert Johnston) Subject: SDC 10: "A man should pause and reflect and be just." Talismans, What better summary of the meaning of the contemplative life than these few words -- " A man should pause and reflect and be just..."? Robert. SDC 10 A man should pause and reflect and be just: his Lord, out of measureless grace, has made him a human being and honored him with the words: "Verily, We created man in the goodliest of forms" (Qur'an 95:4. ) --and caused His mercy which rises out of the dawn of oneness to shine down upon him, until he became the wellspring of the words of God and the place where the mysteries of heaven alighted, and on the morning of creation he was covered with the rays of the qualities of perfection and the graces of holiness. How can he stain this immaculate garment with the filth of selfish desires, or exchange this everlasting honor for infamy? "Dost thou think thyself only a puny form, when the universe is folded up within thee?" (The Imam Ali) Were it not our purpose to be brief and to develop our primary subject, we would here set down a summary +P20 of themes from the Divine world, as to the reality of man and his high station and the surpassing value and worth of the human race. Let this be, for another time. =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 19:00:48 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Marguerite K. Gipson) Subject: Coming of Age in the New Millenium Wow, Fooled ya! I bet you thought I had some hot topic... Well, I do I was out surfing ( I still say it should be spelled serfing) the NET and ran across this address to the Virtual Classroom http://horizons.org/campus/ I saw there the subject title, being taught by a Unitarian Minister Class number #781. And I have a question, There is going to be a class on "Intro to Qabalah" Can someone give me a reader's digest version... sounded mystical... class number #731 oh, to register, its Register@Horizons.org and its free... Warmly, Margreet =END= [end of 1/9/95 session] Talisman emails received 1/10/96 --------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 22:36:35 -0500 (EST) From: jwalbrid To: Bruce Burrill Cc: email@example.com Subject: Re: The Future of God's Faith On Tue, 9 Jan 1996, Bruce Burrill wrote: > Huh? > > Is this the problematic msg that is being talked about? > Yes. John Walbridge > > >Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 01:40:08 +0100 > >Subject: The Future of God's Faith > >To: firstname.lastname@example.org > >From: nobody@REPLAY.COM (Anonymous) > >Organization: RePLaY aND CoMPaNY UnLimited > >XComm: Replay may or may not approve of the content of this posting > >XComm: Report misuse of this automated service to > > > > > > > >Concerning these times, Baha'u'llah wrote: > >"Oppression will enveop the world, and following a universal convulsion, > >the sun of justice will rise from the horizon of the unseen realm." > >(Advent of Divine Justice, p. 81) > >"The world is is travail, and its agitation waxeth day by day, its > >face is turned towards waywardness and unbelief.Such will be its > >plight, that to disclose it now would not be meet and seemly. > >Its perversity will long continue. And when the appointed hour is > >come, there shall suddenly appear that which shall cause the limbs of > >mankind to quake.Then, and only then, will the Divine Standard be > >unfurled, and the Nightingale of Paradise warble its melody." > >(Baha'u'llah, Gleanings,pp. 118-119) > >The term Sun of Justice and Nightingale of Paradise refer to a coming > >Manifestation of God. The term unseen realm refers to the realm of > >the Holy Spirit, and the Divinve Standard refers to the Word of God. > >These are terms discussed in the Kitab-i-Iqan and elsewhere in the > >writings of the Bab and Baha'u'llah. > > > >Most Baha'is believe that the 1000 years prophecy mentioned in the > >Kitab-i-Aqdas begins in 1852, 1863, or 1892--although no date was > >ever given for its beginning by Baha'u'llah, Abdul'Baha, or Shoghi > >Effendi. However, Shoghi Effendi inferred that a Manifestation could > >appear at any time, as recorded by his wife, Ruhiyyih Khanum, Hand of > >The Cause, in the Baha'i News, May, 1958: > >"The Guardian said to some of the pilgrims, during the last year and a > >half or two years, something very strange. He said there are two > >Plans: the long term eternal Plan of Almighty God for mankind on > >this planet; that is the Plan that has the Prophets of God, the Adamic > >Cycle and all of the Great Manifestations of God, like Christ, and > >Muhammad, Buddha, Zoroaster, and Moses and so on, bringing us to this > >day with the Bab and Baha'u'llah. This is the Mighty Plan of God, > >educating humanity and bringing the Kingdom of Heaven on earth on this > >planet. He said this is the Plan of God, it goes forward in > >mysterious ways, we do not always understand its workings. > > Then he said, we have the Divine plane, which is being carried > >forward by the Baha'is in the form as we know it; first the two > >Seven-Year Plans, and then this Ten-Year Plan--the World Crusade which > >we are now engaged upon and part of which has passed. > > The Guardian said, who knows, maybe this Great Plan of God will > >interfere in the other Plan." > > > >It is clear that if the Great Plan of God, which is the coming of a > >Manifestation, interferes with the present Baha'i Teaching Plans, > >then we must confidently expect a Manifestation to appear soon. > >We know this to be the Revelation of the Greatest Name, which > >in Arabic is BHA', composed of three letters. The Bab said he was the > >B (Ba) of the Greatest Name (see Selections from the Writings of > >E.G. Browne, by M. Momen, p. 215) and Baha'u'llah said that He was > >the H (Ha) of the Greatest Name (se Kitab-i-Iqan, 1954 edtion, > > p. 261--Glossary, and in the Seven Valleys and the Four Valleys, > > 1952 edition, footnote p. 56). The Third Letter, the A (Alif) is > >yet to appear, and when He appears the Revelation of the Greatest > >Name will be completed. The 1000 years will begin at that time. > > > >For further information, write: > >Baha'i, P.O.Box 172, Eckert, CO, 81418. U.S.A > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 12:00:35 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: Talisman@indiana.edu Cc: Noorbakhsh.Monzavi@hibo.no, Masumian@mail.utexas.edu, email@example.com Subject: Reuters 1/8/96 (fwd) > 'IRAN' STORIES >Transmission date: 96/01/08 > 1. 14:34 FIRE SWEEPS THROUGH TEHRAN BAZAAR > 2. 13:58 IRAN POLICE RAID 110 HOMES, SEIZE BANNED TV DISHES > 3. 09:40 CHINA ASSURES IRAN ON NUCLEAR COOPERATION > 4. 09:08 IRAN'S VELAYATI TO VISIT INDIA THIS WEEK > >=START= XMT: 14:34 Mon Jan 08 EXP: 4 :00 Thu Jan 11 > > > Fire sweeps through Tehran bazaar > TEHRAN, Jan 8 (Reuter) - A fire swept through Tehran's old bazaar district, >gutting a number of stores, local newspapers said on Monday. > The daily Kayhan said firemen from three stations fought over an hour to >put out the blaze and prevent it from spreading to neighbouring shops in the >old market's narrow streets. > A fire department official, quoted by the daily Resalat, estimated damage >caused by the fire on Saturday at 1.5 billion rials ($500,000 at the official >exchange rate). > He said the cause of the fire was being investigated but criticised shop >owners for ignoring fire safety rules. > In December, a huge blaze gutted 150 stores in an old garment district in >Tehran and injured three firemen. > ($1-3,000 rials) > >=END= > >=START= XMT: 13:58 Mon Jan 08 EXP: 3 :00 Thu Jan 11 > > > Iran Police raid 110 homes, seize banned TV dishes > TEHRAN, Jan 8 (Reuter) - Iranian police raided 110 houses in Tehran and >seized banned satellite television equipment used to watch ``corrupting'' >Western programmes, a local newspaper said on Monday. > The daily Kayhan said police had obtained court orders to search the houses >last week after screening neighbourhoods in east Tehran to pinpoint violators. > Last April, Iran ordered all satellite television equipment to be >dismantled after banning them earlier last year to combat what it termed a >Western cultural invasion. > Residents said some of the estimated 250,000 dish owners had in the past >few months put them back up on the roof, often camouflaging them as air >conditioners and other equipment. > Under the ban, illegal users of satellitee dishes face fines of three >million rials ($1,000 at the official exchange rate) and confiscation of the >equipment. > >=END= > >=START= XMT: 09:40 Mon Jan 08 EXP: 9 :00 Thu Jan 11 > > > China assures Iran on nuclear cooperation > TEHRAN, Jan 8 (Reuter) - China will continue its nuclear cooperation with >Iran, a senior Chinese official said on Monday during a visit to Tehran, >state-run Tehran radio reported. > ``China will continue its cooperation with Iran on the peaceful use of >nuclear energy within the framework of regulations set by the International >Atomic Energy Agency, and considers this a principled and correct policy,'' >First Deputy Foreign Minister Tian Zengpei was quoted by the radio as saying. > The United States has pressed China not to proceed with a deal to help Iran >build two small 300-megawatt nuclear power stations in Iran's Khuzestan >province near the Iraqi border. > U.S. officials said in September Beijing had assured Washington the deal >would not go ahead, and Chinese officials later said China had ``suspended for >the time being'' the reactor sale. > It was not clear if Tian meant that the deal would go ahead after all and >the radio gave no further details of his remarks made during talks with Iranian >Deputy Foreign Minister Alaeddin Boroujerdi. > Boroujerdi was quoted as saying: ``Iran will continue its principled >long-term policy of expanding cooperation with China and the two states' ties >will grow based on the huge potentials of the two countries.'' > Iran has said negotiations over the site, price and schedule for the deal >were still in progress. > Washington accuses Iran of sponsoring ``state terrorism'' and argues Tehran >might use the technology it obtained from China to develop nuclear arms. > Iran denies the charge and says its nuclear programme is strictly peaceful. > >=END= > >=START= XMT: 09:08 Mon Jan 08 EXP: 9 :00 Thu Jan 11 > > > Iran's Velayati to visit India this week > NEW DELHI, Jan 8 (Reuter) - Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati >will arrive in India for a three-day visit on Thursday, an Indian foreign >ministry spokesman said on Monday. > He said Velayati would hold talks with External Affairs Minister Pranab >Mukherjee in New Delhi and later go to Bombay to take part in the centenary >celebrations of the Confederation of Indian Industry, the nation's leading >business club. > Diplomats said the two foreign ministers would discuss the situation in >Afghanistan. They oppose the rise of the Taliban movement against the Kabul >government. > A multi-billion dollar gas pipeline deal and preparations for India's >proposed transit trade through Iran to Central Asian countries would be high on >the agenda, they said. > Velayati has not hidden his support for India's ruling Congress party in >previous general elections. > There is considerable speculation about whether Moslem Iran will directly >or indirectly express its support for Prime Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao's >government. > Rao badly needs the support of Indian Moslems, who form about 12 percent of >the country's population, to mount any serious campaign for a second term in >office in elections he has said will take place in April. > REUTER > >=END= > =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 21:40:01 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: applying teachings On Sat, 6 Jan 1996 Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl wrote: > you posted a message on the policy of non-interference in > government which contained two quotes from WOB on the topic > of 'the power of the House to infallibly apply the Teachings.' > The first, which you cited in full, was from p 145, but it refers to > an *authority* to apply 'His legislative ordinances', not to any > infallibility in doing so. The second which you referred to was > on pp 19-20, but at least in my edition (1980 reprint of the 1974 > 2nd revised edition) this again does not refer to infallibility in > applying the teachings. > I submit that the topic should be 'the power of the House > to apply the Teachings - right or wrong'. There is an abundance of quotes in the writings referring to the NSA's and LSA's in that fashion; but I can think of none referring to the Guardian or the House in that manner (that we obey because it/he is the authority, but that does not carry a guarantee of infallibility.) I have only recently understood that some view the authority of the House as having a wider scope than the guidance the House receives. I am now trying to understand the intellectual basis, and the basis in the Texts and interpretations, for that view. My own view is that in those areas of non-infallibility -- the Guardian identified some specifically -- the Guardian made clear that the believer was free to obey or not, as these were merely his suggestions. Therefore he not only declared the matter as outside of the scope of his infallibilty, but of his authority to command that the believers obey. I do feel that the scope of infallibility and the scope of authority are coterminous. But I am not sure myself what texts are available on the subject. There were not many reflective comments by the Guardian on his infallibility. Brent =END= From: TLCULHANE@aol.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 23:47:21 -0500 To: email@example.com Subject: re: Jim's reforms Dear Arindam , I do appreciate your enthusiasm ! I must say that I think you may have missed the point of Jim's message . While he is perfectly capable of speaking on his behalf I feel it necessary to point out that Jim is suggesting that until ther believers really confront the message of Shoghi Effendi to this country the enthusiasm kindled in Houston is likely to be much like being all dressed up for a party with no place to go . Are the believers in Houston and elsewhere ready to tackle the hard work of rooting out the pervasive materialism in the midst ? a cancerous secularism ? an inveterate racialism ? If not what we will have in the end I fear wil be a Bahai gloss on New Age spirituallity which for whatever it has indicates a pathetic lack of recognition of the tragic in human life and does not and can not sustain people for the long struggle towards personal and colective transformation. As for rallying around the Admimnistrative institutions. I became a Bahai 24 years ago in the midst of a significant youth movement entering the Faith . There was enthusism galore . The NSa was given standing ovations in Oklahoma City and St Louis . The issue is not the NSA pro or con .One of our greatest traps it sems to me is to confuse spiritual redemption and transformation with Administrative identities . I understand the consolidation work is lagging in Houston . That has always beem the case . As a salesman i can tell you the EASY part of the process is the sale i.e. the declaration . The hard psrt comes in creating "meaningful " involvement for all those involved, the long term coperation , mutual aid and reciprocity spoken of by the Master. That has to be something greater than a perpetual motion evangelizing machine . What do you propose for the new declarents ? How many of them are staying involved ? I bet not many on a percentage basis . If all we have to offer people is another version of a tent revival and saying I believe not much will come of all the wonderful sentiments and energies you have described . We seem to think it is about signing on and assigning committee work . That is community = administration . My guess is there are more "inactive Bahais out there who could be fruitfully resurrected with an emphasis on worship services and all the work and ecstasy associated with that experience and in developing the dependencies of the House of Worship devoted to the "disinterested service to mankind" e.g. charitable sevice than all the new believers who have "declared in Hiuston or anywhere else in this country in the past several years. I will be impressed when a community tells me that they have constructed a House of Worship and hold Daily worship services that a majority of the community attends . No excuses for work schedules and all those other committments . This would send a more powerful message than anything I know that Bahais are serious about a different way of life . All the I believe stuff is not much of a big deal . And we should not fool ourselves into thinking so . Without the above mentioned activities i cant for the life of me figure out what al these new believers are going to do - attend "deepenings forever ? I do not mean to rain on your parade as an end in itself . I have been where you are more than once . I am interested in a vast increase in the "presence" of the Faith in America. I do not believe that will happen - and I think that was Jims point - until the Bahais take seriously Shoghi Effendi and begin the hard work of ridding ourselves of the evils within our own community and then assailing them without . Until we do it there is nothing beyond words to offer and the world has plenty of words . As Baha u lah says "let deeds not words be your adorning." If you have examples of this hard work being undertaken PLEASE tell me . I would like to learn of nothing better and there would be little that would thrill me more. So let me put my monet where my mouth is for suggestions : 1) Build a house of Worship - not a Bahai center - and have the believers do it . 2) Hold daliy worship services with music - in the morning 3) Identify the human needs of the Bahai community , there social and economic concerns for thenmselves and their children and organizt the first dependency of the House of Worship . 4) Once 3 has been done extend the benefit of the communities response to the city in which you live . 5) Consult and consult really consult about what service activities ar most meaningful to the believers and for whjich there are pressing needs in your city that have a clear spititual component. If anyone is not sure have then refer to Abdul Baha in Selections p .3 "Soon will your swiflty passing days ."if noone is sure where to begin . 6) Then systematically begin doing the results of 5 above . Then I bet you will see believers "inactive "ones come out of the wood work and you will see new believers get involved and stay involved and the enthusiasm you exhibit will become contagious and infect all sorts of people around you who will want to know who are these people that do such things with such energy and love and reverential awe. Oh yes and do not , do not , confuse any of these activities with forming a "committee" These are activities asociated with the House of Worship not the Administrative institutions . let the administrators earn there keep by seeing that the resources human and financial are there to accomplish these ends . if they wont- hey- elect new ones that will . Then maybe LSA's wil begin to speak to the world about justice and bear the prophetic "witness' to the world and address the powerful about a new world that I am convinced Bahau llah intended them to do. And let me know what happens ! warm regards , Terry =END= From: Dave10018@aol.com Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 23:32:27 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com Subject: Re: Humility and Forgiveness Phillip, according to an article in the Hartford Courant this morning, the November issue of the American Journal of Cardiology contains an article about research which shows that cultivating deliberately the feeling of "deep appreciation" is highly beneficial for the heart, and stressing the beneficial effects of positive emotions on the heart, and its links to emotional systems in the brain. This research can be accessed at http://www.webcom.com/hrtmath everyone, i will be putting in my 2 cents again soon. aol email is driving me to distraction! david taylor =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 21:48:12 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: Member1700@aol.com Cc: Talisman Subject: Samandari memoirs Having beat my wife to the mailbox, and hoarded the new Kalimat book of Tarazu'llah Samandari's memoirs, I want to thank Kalimat for their typically good job of publishing and editing an attractive book. Samandari possessed a lion heart. Tony, good job on the introduction. It reminded me of my own experiences with the Hands. I heard that the Guardian directed Samandari to write his memoirs, and that they filled several volumes. This was a tantalizing taste, but brief. Any indications that more memoirs exist, or will become available? Also, a question. In one of His Tablets (Ishraqat? Kalimat-i-Firdawsiyyih?) Baha'u'llah states that "Samandar and the son of Samandar" were present. Does this refer to Tarazullah? I assume not, because he was present in the Holy Land only during the last months of the lifetime of the Manifestation, and I was under the impression that those Tablets were revealed some years earlier. Did Samandar have another son / Tarazullah a brother? Brent =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 08:24:07+030 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Don Peden) Subject: forgiveness Dear Phillip: Thank you for your metaphor of the shock absorbers. I am not sure that I am understanding all the "roles" represented in your analogy. Please let me explain what I am seeing, and it may become clearer what I am getting at. What you have described is a system of dealing with a bump by an integrated unit. By this I mean that the shock absorber and the car are part of the same unit. They are dealing with an "interuption" caused by an external object...something outside that unit. The job of the shock absorber is to cushion the blow and correct the response for the unit. In the Faith, are the Institutions outside the unit, or part of it? Are the individual believers part of the unit or an external force? What I would suggest is that the problem lies in how to get the unit to work together. =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 08:23:53+030 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Don Peden) Subject: methaphors/healing Dear Gordon: I use to "live" in the land of metaphor, riding on a mount of pure response to shimmering images, seeing possibilities and promise in every senerio, and weaving a world of promise and unity from all sources of metaphor. New metaphors were welcomed in and invited to share in the endless pot of sustanance. Every time I read the writings, my heart would overflow with...something...call it response...in childlike wonder. There was no problem of teaching, acting, or moving myself from one point of being to change whatever I did, fine tuning my actions to be in harmony with my response. My heart was the check point, often encouraging me to do something that logic denied...with amazing results. That response would be able to reverberate throughout our community as people would pick up those reflected rays and reflect them back and to each other. It did not come from me, but from the mirror of my response. It felt like the natural way to be a Baha'i, and it felt dynamic. Then, through various experiences with the mortal world of the Baha'i community and its earthbound vision, through the "couldn't, shouldn't, wouldn't, can't" world of limited vision, I lost my faith, and I lost the ability to dream, or to believe in the dream. The final cord snapped when I thought that the institutions of the N.S.A. and Universal House themselves had ceased to be the anchor from which to fix my dreamings. Fortunately, this proved to not be true, (and this allowed a healing of sorts to start) but not before the passage of a lengthy, painful time where we had felt totally alienated and cut off. The insistence of putting the Faith in a box and dealing with marketing strategies censored the methaphors and squeezed the life out of the dream. For an artist, this is worse than terrible. I have submitted to the knowledge that I can't reject Baha'u'llah (a realization come too through "head" arguments on talisman), and, therefore, by default am still a Baha'i, but I have not been able to dream...to see the vision in the metaphors anymore. Therefore, I have not prayed beyond reciting a few lines and hoping for a recognition to be sparked in my heart, because for me, prayer is very much the connecting cord to the vision. Frankly, not being what would be classified as an intellectual, I do grow weary sometimes of the lively debates and arguments, the hot flashes of defeniveness, and the abrasion of "attack" mode often found on talisman, but it is okay. That is the world of the intellectual. Universities breed it, minds grasp it, and it is a marvellous stone on which to hone the sharpness of thinking rational skills. Dissection, slice by slice of images, metaphors, law, rules, parameters, and ideas, are one way of approaching truth. But it does not feed the heart. It is also not where I live as an artist. Realizing that I can not deny the Faith in my life has been a probable all time low in my life. If I could flush it out and ignore it, it would be a relief to not have to deal with it. But I can't. I know that. Add that to tests such as Don and I have never faced before, we can only come to one conclusion, that in order to deal with the outer tests, we need to sort ourselves out inside. Time to throw open the nine temple doors of the heart, and air the place out...let the birdsong enter, and the quiet meditative presence replace the hurt and the pain. There is another posting about a path of healing from Henry Miller....very welcome! Perhaps the gift we are hoping for. But I can not approach the faith through my head...it is not in me. I can see the concepts, I can admire the passion behind the argument, I can see the logic, and I can stand outside it and look at it analytically. I'm just not part of it. This approach does not touch my heart...I am not an intellectual. I have a brain and it works well, but I don't take a lot of joy from argument and defence of ideas. Your posting is one of the few which has caused a small ember to glow. A small light...and my heart swoops to it like a moth, attracted beyond any reason, and hungering for yet another glimmer. I don't understand it, but I am grateful. As Oliver Twist said, "More, please!" Love, Bev. =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 07:46:23 IST From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Stephen Karnik) To: email@example.com Subject: Subscribe subscribe talisman firstname.lastname@example.org =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 22:52:39 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: jwalbrid Cc: email@example.com Subject: Re: messages from firstname.lastname@example.org On Mon, 8 Jan 1996, jwalbrid wrote: > I have gotten a couple of queries about an e-mail message from > "email@example.com". This obviously is an account designed to forward > e-mail messages in a way that makes the sender anonymous. The message I > got was not addressed to Talisman, which leads me to suspect that some > lurker sent the message to active participants in Talisman but not to the > list itself. Did anybody NOT get it? I didn't. > As for the content, it was evidently from a follower of Jamsheed Ma'ani, > an odd covenant-breaker (Is there any other kind these days?) who claims > to be a third Manifestation of God on the grounds that the word "Baha" > has three letters in Arabic. Does anybody know anything more about this > man and his group than I do? One of the sharp-eyed friends on Talisman does; he can post on this if he wants to. I note that the P.O. Box of firstname.lastname@example.org is in Eckert, Colorado. This is in the same telephone area code as the Covenant breaker John Carre. Carre, according to my Talisman friend, used to be a follower of Jamshed Ma'ani. Carre's daughter (name not known) married into the Ma'ani family. The question in my mind is, is the maiden name of Michelle Ma'ani, Michelle Carre? I have not been able to determine this. However, I find evidence in her posts to s.r.b. that her views are consistent with John Carre's: (That though Jamshid Ma'ani is no longer viewed as a Manifestation of God, a new one is coming.) Michelle Ma'ani posted these views on s.r.b. and insinuated the same on Talisman, in the guise of questioning seeker, and later as wounded seeker. My protection A.B.M. said that if memory serves him correctly, she was the person responsible for a number of mailings to LSA's in Colorado and northern New Mexico promoting this view. So: I think Michelle Ma'ani is this nobody person; I think she promotes the same views as have been attributed to John Carre, a declared Covenant breaker; I think it entirely possible she is Carre's daughter; and these "nobody" posts, like Michelle Ma'ani's, don't pass the smell test. =END= Date: Tue, 09 Jan 1996 23:08:17 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Gordon McFarlane) Subject: Re: The Future of God's Faith Now that everybody's read what nobody wrote can somebody tell me why everybody's so upset. Why, anybody should see that nobody's simply misinformed. Gord. --- Gordon McFarlane e-mail: MCFARLANE@upanet.uleth.ca Public Access Internet The University of Lethbridge =END= From: Member1700@aol.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 01:28:59 -0500 To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: Samandari memoirs Yes, Mr. Samandari wrote his full memoirs--the story of his life-- of which the new Kalimat book is just a taste. Only a few pages, really. But, I do not think that there are any plans to translate or publish the full thing. It has never been published in Persian, either. Maybe someone else knows about the reference in the Ishraqat. I don't. Shoghi Effendi asked all of the old believers, and especially the companions of Baha'u'llah to record their memoirs. There are a large number of unpublished manuscripts, as Ahang has informed us. Hope Kalimat gets a crack at them one day. Warmest, Tony =END= From: Member1700@aol.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 01:45:23 -0500 To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: Nuqtatul-Kaf (Browne's translation) Hey, guys! Browne did not translate Naqtatu'l-Kaf at all. He published the original Persian as a part of the Gibb Memorial Series, I believe. Anyway, there is no translation of the text. There is a long English introduction, and another one in Persian--by a different author, if I recall. Neither is this a spurious history, but a real early document. (Or rather, two early documents, probably by different authors.) Balyuzi has a lot to say about it in his book E. G. Browne and the Baha'i Faith. But, MacEoin's analysis in his book on Sources of Babi Doctrine and History (Brill) is the really excellent work on the subject. Anyone interested in the book should read both discussions. Warmest, Tony =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 22:44:55 -0800 From: email@example.com (DEREK COCKSHUT ) Subject: Nuqtatul-Kaf Browne Translation . To: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Talismanians . Browne did not publish a full English translation .He had this early history of the Faith publish by Brill < Leiden > in 1910 ,it was part of an academic series done in the name of a Cambridge student .The full text in Persian was published with a long commentary by Browne . However it is now believed Muhammed Qazvini formulated much of the commentary . The Nuqtatul-Kaf claims to be the work of Haji Mirza Jani Kashani . This of course would not be possible due to his martyedom in 1852 . This book and Tarikh-i-Javid both claim to be based on the old and orginal work of Haji Mirza Jani Kashani . He of course was the first believer in the Bab from Kashan .The Bab stayed in his house . He had three brothers two of them became Babis . One of the two later followed Azal the other was the one who Baha'u'llah revealed the Tablet of the Companion for . Kindest Regards Derek Cockshut =END= From: Member1700@aol.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 02:05:42 -0500 To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: Between democracy and fascism Well, Kevin, I am afraid that we agree again. Sorry! There certainly is a lot of space between liberal-democratic traditions (which are by no means monolithic, in any case) and fascist theories of state and government. I have no interest in painting the world in black and white to fit either theory. And it is quite possible that any future Baha'i state will fall somewhere in between. But, that is not what I was concerned about. I was simply noting that some popular Baha'i ideas about the Administrative Order and the future Baha'i world commonwealth are identical in theory to fascist conceptions of government and should be rejected. I cited examples. After all, the liberal-democractic tradition is explicitly praised and recommended in the Writings of Baha'u'llah and 'Abdu'l-Baha, while fascist conceptions are not--and in fact are denounce by Shoghi Effendi. So, why do we find the former so distasteful and the latter so tantalizing? Well, go figure. Warmest, Tony =END= Date: Tue, 9 Jan 96 23:53 PST To: email@example.com (Gordon McFarlane) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Burl Barer) Subject: The Bride Cc: email@example.com Gordy's recent post brought this story to mind: The distraught young woman came to Rabbi Israel, the Maggid of Kozhintz. "Rebbe, help me," she said. "My husband has deserted me!" "Why did he leave you?" asked Rabbi Israel. "He says that I'm ugly," said the woman. "And what do you say to that?" asked the Rabbi. "Rebbe!" cried the woman. "Under the wedding canopy I was beautiful in his eyes. Suddenly, I am ugly?" Rabbi Israel lifted his eyes to the heavens; "Master of the Universe! When you wed us at Mount Sinai we were beautiful in Your eyes. So what happened? Why have You turned Your face from us?" Burl ******************************************************* Order MAN OVERBOARD, the new book by Burl Barer today! ******************************************************* =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 01:04:58 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: "Marguerite K. Gipson" Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: The Qabbalah in a nutshell! Dear Marguerite Gipson and illustrious talizens-- The following post I've put together from some of the notes I've taken over the past few years from my readings of Gershom Scholem and Leo Schaya on the Kabbalah, and a short paper comparing the Kabbalah & Isma'ilism I've neglected to finish, so there could be some mistakes and misintepretations on my part. I hope this is what you're looking for, Marguerite, and I highly recommend you read Schaya's book _The Universal Meaning of the Kabbalah_ and any work by Gershom Scholem. The word "Qabalah," "Cabalah" or "Kabbalah" is used in different, sometimes misleading, contexts by contemporary New Agers. Basically, Kabbalah is Jewish esoterism and the word is Hebrew meaning "tradition" or, literally, "recieved." Originally the Kabbalah was one streak within Jewish thought emphasizing spirit over law, ecstatic feeling as against reason and intellect in regard to matters of faith -- much like the early antinomian Sufis in Islam (i.e. Bayazid Bistami, Hallaj, Nuri, et al). Early Kabbalah is said to have attracted a specific spiritual "type," what the late Henri Corbin, taking his cue from Dante and the Rennaissance Neoplatonists, in relation to Islamic mysticism, has dubbed the *fidele l'amour*. However, it was much later that the term "Kabbalah" came to be applied to a specific set of mystical/esoteric doctrines developed in Judaism from the time of Philo of Alexandria to the 14th century AD, and especially with regard to the collection of books written in support of these ideas -- which I'll get to in a minute. While today Hasidism (one school of contemporary Orthodox Judaism) has incorporated, nay subsumed, much of the Kabbalah into its overall ethos, in much earlier times the orthodox where vehemently opposed to precisely what they now accept as a valid manifestation of Jewish praxis. The Essenes, for example, a heterodox group Jesus of Nazareth is said to have belonged to at one point in his early career by certain radical, contemporary Dead Sea Scroll scholars, were proto-Kabbalists, as were the prophets Solomon (the Solomon of the apocryphal "Songs"), Enoch, Elijah, Elisha and possibly Daniel. The doctrines of the Kabbalah are thoroughly Neoplatonic in orientation, especially of the pagan religious, post-Plotinian variety (i.e. Iamblichus & Proclus). But it was essentially through interaction with the Sufis, and possibly Isma'ilis, that a more mature, theosophical Kabbalism came to be developed by the 14th century -- some have even claimed influence by the apophatic Christain Neoplatonism of Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite and his interpretor, John Scotus Eriugena (there is no doubt that some form of cross-fertilization was occuring). These doctrines include one of emanation from a transcendent Godhead (known as _En Sof_) to the world, mediated through the _Shekinah_ (the Divine Grace or Light, which is the archetypal Feminine Nature and analogous to the Plotinian "nous" or Divine Mind) and, next, a group of celestial souls or spheres, the _sefiroth_. These _sefiroth_, the harbingers of the infinite divine, light of the Shekinah, are so many intellects emanated by the Divine Feminine producing and directing creation. In tandem with the sefiroth, on the next level below, there are a pleroma of angels and demiurges who facilitate man's communion with Shekinah and, ultimately, the Godhead. Some schools of Kabbalah argue for the eternality of the world of creation and allegorize the creatio ex nihilo account of the Book of Genesis. Kabbalists believe in metempsychosis and an understanding of "sin" as separation from the Divine Ground of Being; the path of perfection and its culmination is nothing more than overcoming this spiritual, ontological separation. The prototype of all spiritual experiences is seen as that of the the prophets Elijah, with his burning chariot, and Enoch in his mystical ascent to the Throne of God. In the texts of the Kabbalah and Kabbalistic interpretations of the Book of Genesis, Adam is identified as the primordial, cosmic man (Adam Kadmon) from which the human being is derived. This primordial Adam is androgynous and does not reflect the distinctions of male and female here on this gross, material level below. Hence, the human being is posited in this scheme as being a microcosm of the macrocosm, a mini-universe as it were. This notion of Adam as the celestial prototype of mankind harkens back to explicit doctrines of the Sufis and especially those of the theosophical Sufism of Ibn `Arabi (see the first chapter of the _Fusus al-Hikam_, for instance). Some peculiar ideas that show up in the Kabbalah include doctrines relating to the dualisms of right and left, male and female, up and down, light and darkness, purity and impurity, hot and cold, black and white, etc.: everything in the universe is a syzygy (a two-in-one), which characterizes the underlying harmony of all things in the cosmos. Others include the use of special amulets and talismans, numbers and letters with special significance (a form of pythagorean gematria & numerology is practiced in the Kabbalah), divination and the casting of lots, the changing of ones name in times of danger, illness, or for reasons of spiritual penance, levels of initiation and much more. Noteable representatives of the early to late medieval school of Jewish Kabbalah include Aaron ben Samuel (9th century AD), who is said to have brought an early permutation of high medieval Jewish mysticism into Europe from the Middle East, and an important Andalusian Rabbi of the early twelfth century, Moses ben Nahman. The Kabbalah developed almost unhindered as an integral part of Jewish life and thought by the Muslim rulers in Twelfth Century Muslim Spain -- some Kabbalists where possibly even admitted and initiated into the Islamic Sufi orders of the Maghreb --, and the systematizer of this era being one Ibrahim ibn Samuel Abulafia, also known as an exponent of Avicennan peripatetic philosophy. Moses Maimonides, the author of the important _Guide for the Perplexed_ and the chief Jewish Avicennan, is usually not associated with the Kabbalists. However, certain of his views (like his more dynamic version of Averroes' implied "double-truth" idea) strongly suggest Kabbalistic leanings. The Rennaissance figures where Isaac Luria (the originator of the modern system) and Ha'im Vital (the successor of Luria and an alchemist of note). There is some speculation about the possible Kabbalist connection of the visionary-prophet, Michel de Nostradamus, as he was of Jewish extraction, while outwardly a practicing Catholic -- he was almost excommunicated by Church authorities on more than one occasion for holding heterodox views, especially in regard to the nature of his prophecies. Eighteenth century representatives where Israel ben Elizer Ba'al Shem Tov, the founder of Hasidism, and his successor Baer of Meseritz. For a few centuries now there has been marked opposition between the Kabbalists and Talmudists. More recently, however, there seems to have been some kind of rapproachment between the two camps. Some fundamentalist and millenarian oriented Jewish groups and leaders in the twentieth century, such as the late quasi-Messiah figure of Brooklyn, Rabbi Schneerson, and other more political groups within Israel itself have invoked/and are invoking the Kabbalah as a legitimate source of Jewish identity and a means of opposition to Israeli establishmentarian secularism. Certain Rabbis, who are advocates of the Kabbalah, are currently under investigation by Israeli authorities for their role in endorsing the assassination of the late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin last October. Not withstanding, however, there are and have been more liberal, and somewhat apolitical, modern exponents of the Kabbalah such as the late Gerschom Scholem (a member of Carl Jung's "Ascona circle", and friend to the late Henri Corbin, Toshihiko Izutsu, Joseph Cambell and Mircea Eliade) and the follower of the Traditionalist school of Rene Guenon & Frithjof Schuon, m'sieu Leo Schaya). The chief, primary texts of the Kabbalah include 1) an esoteric, allegorical commentary on the Pentateuch composed in Aramaic, possibly written by many hands, including that of Moses ben Shem Tob de Leon (1250-1305), known as the _Zohar_ (The Book of Glory); 2) a text on numerology, gematria, the symbolic nature of the Hebrew letters and divine emanation, composed sometime in the late 6th century AD, the _Sefer Yesira_; 3) a commentary on the Book of Genesis arguing for the eternity of the world and the primordial matter, attributed to one Isaac the Blind (the 13th century?), the _Sefer hab-Bahir_; 4) the _Hekhaloth_, a commentary on the two parts of the _Book of Enoch_, composed by Solomon ben Elisha (13th century?); 5) a text dealing with the preparation of talismans and amulets, _The Book of Raziel_; 6) _Shi'ur Koma_, a text discussing the dimensions, levels and members of the Godhead, and 7) _Gilgulim_ a list of the lives of transmigrated spirits. It is interesting to note that the number _seven_ plays an important role in the esoterism of the Kabbalah, as the 7 primary texts should indicate. Perhaps there is some kind of as yet unexplored connection with the Isma'ilis. After all, the major developments in Kabbalah occur during the time span of medieval Islamicate when the Isma'ili Fatimids where the rulers and patrons of key areas of North Africa -- Egypt in particular, where a sizeable Jewish community is known to have flourished. Regards, Nima =END= From: "Marc Lustig" To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 10:15:54 +0000 Subject: (Weitergel.) The Future of God's Faith Dear Folks: Yesterday I got the following message in my mailbox. The author of this message seems not to accept the UHJ as the unfallible institution. If there is really a prohpet to come "very soon" then the UHJ would inform the worldwide community, wouldn't it ? Has anyone also received this ? Can you give any comment ? BTW: I just resubscribed today so possibly this has been discussed already. Thanks. Marc ------- Weitergeleitete Nachricht folgt ------- Date: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 06:52:39 +0100 Subject: The Future of God's Faith To: email@example.com From: nobody@REPLAY.COM (Anonymous) Organization: RePLaY aND CoMPaNY UnLimited Concerning these times, Baha'u'llah wrote: "Oppression will enveop the world, and following a universal convulsion, the sun of justice will rise from the horizon of the unseen realm." (Advent of Divine Justice, p. 81) "The world is is travail, and its agitation waxeth day by day, its face is turned towards waywardness and unbelief.Such will be its plight, that to disclose it now would not be meet and seemly. Its perversity will long continue. And when the appointed hour is come, there shall suddenly appear that which shall cause the limbs of mankind to quake.Then, and only then, will the Divine Standard be unfurled, and the Nightingale of Paradise warble its melody." (Baha'u'llah, Gleanings,pp. 118-119) The term Sun of Justice and Nightingale of Paradise refer to a coming Manifestation of God. The term unseen realm refers to the realm of the Holy Spirit, and the Divinve Standard refers to the Word of God. These are terms discussed in the Kitab-i-Iqan and elsewhere in the writings of the Bab and Baha'u'llah. Most Baha'is believe that the 1000 years prophecy mentioned in the Kitab-i-Aqdas begins in 1852, 1863, or 1892--although no date was ever given for its beginning by Baha'u'llah, Abdul'Baha, or Shoghi Effendi. However, Shoghi Effendi inferred that a Manifestation could appear at any time, as recorded by his wife, Ruhiyyih Khanum, Hand of The Cause, in the Baha'i News, May, 1958: "The Guardian said to some of the pilgrims, during the last year and a half or two years, something very strange. He said there are two Plans: the long term eternal Plan of Almighty God for mankind on this planet; that is the Plan that has the Prophets of God, the Adamic Cycle and all of the Great Manifestations of God, like Christ, and Muhammad, Buddha, Zoroaster, and Moses and so on, bringing us to this day with the Bab and Baha'u'llah. This is the Mighty Plan of God, educating humanity and bringing the Kingdom of Heaven on earth on this planet. He said this is the Plan of God, it goes forward in mysterious ways, we do not always understand its workings. Then he said, we have the Divine plane, which is being carried forward by the Baha'is in the form as we know it; first the two Seven-Year Plans, and then this Ten-Year Plan--the World Crusade which we are now engaged upon and part of which has passed. The Guardian said, who knows, maybe this Great Plan of God will interfere in the other Plan." It is clear that if the Great Plan of God, which is the coming of a Manifestation, interferes with the present Baha'i Teaching Plans, then we must confidently expect a Manifestation to appear soon. We know this to be the Revelation of the Greatest Name, which in Arabic is BHA', composed of three letters. The Bab said he was the B (Ba) of the Greatest Name (see Selections from the Writings of E.G. Browne, by M. Momen, p. 215) and Baha'u'llah said that He was the H (Ha) of the Greatest Name (se Kitab-i-Iqan, 1954 edtion, p. 261--Glossary, and in the Seven Valleys and the Four Valleys, 1952 edition, footnote p. 56). The Third Letter, the A (Alif) is yet to appear, and when He appears the Revelation of the Greatest Name will be completed. The 1000 years will begin at that time. For further information, write: Baha'i, P.O.Box 172, Eckert, CO, 81418. U.S.A. ********************************************************* Marc Lustig University of Duisburg, Germany Dept. for Social Sciences and Philosophy E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org FAX +49 (203) 288520 Moderator - List Manager ...keep your secret thoughts pure... ('Abdu'l-Baha) ********************************************************* =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 02:57:01 -0500 From: "Ahang Rabbani" To: email@example.com Subject: Samandari memoirs [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] It memory severs, it was Abdu'l-Baha who instructed Tarazu'llah Samandari to maintain a detailed daily diary of his activities and this he did every single day of his life. He had large notebooks in which he recorded the details of his travels, conversations, peoples he met, meetings attended, reports sent, etc, etc. At some point, believe during Shoghi Effendi's time, he started sending each completed notebook to Haifa for the Guardian's information and safekeeping. These are all kept at the Mansion of Bahji, in so-called Mirza Abu'l-Fadl's room -- at least used to be there when I served in Haifa. Vahid Rafati, who had spend a couple of weeks cataloging them, used to say they are a treasure house of history. I believe the entire collection is over 130 volumes, each a few hundred pages long of dense writing. Charles Mason Remey's collection, which I believe stands over 250 volumes, is of different character in a sense that he kept all his correspondence, pictures, etc., whereas Samandari is mostly straight forward diary. At any rate, between the two of them, we have nearly 400 volumes of history of east and west. Regarding Brent's query, I believe its Mr. Samandari's father, Shaykh Kazim, who is being mentioned by Baha'u'llah. His uncle, Nabil-i Akbar (not to be confused with Nabil-i Qa'ini or Nabil-i Zarandi) was a very important figure of the early days and was present at Fort Tabarsi battle. The so-called Quddus' letter, which is very famous among the Persians, I maintain, is not by Quddus and is written by this uncle of Jinab-i Samandari. (A detailed discussion outlining my theory soon to be published.) regards, ahang. =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 11:45:33 +0000 (GMT) From: Robert Parry To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: impress your theological friends; impress yourself Esteemed colleagues...for your ruminification...and light relief. This was posted to the postmodern-christian email group i`m on. Never again need you be at a loss for words in the company of theologions. Inculcate adoration or scatter the tiresome! regards robert parry DO-IT-YOURSELF IMPRESSIVE THEOLOGICAL CONSTRUCTS Compose 10,000 impressive sentences. Select a phrase from each column to form statements which sound profound. Column A Column B Column C Column D ----------------- -------------- -------------- -------------- 1 A formal analysis 1 the meaning of 1 is further 1 the relevant will quickly show major elements compounded by dynamics of that considering Luke-Acts. 2 From an 2 the linguistic 2 imposes 2 the ramifications exegetical point consideration smothering of consensus- of view constraints upon building. 3 Although Moltmann 3 a structural 3 necessitates that 3 the clarity of does not state it dynamic urgent the sociological in so many words, analysis consideration dimensions. the implication be made of is clear that 4 There can be no 4 the 4 adds 4 the unfortunate doubt that eschatological considerable faux-pas of structure urgency to neo-orthodoxy. 5 Based upon 5 the homiletic 5 calls into 5 any attempt to interdisciplinary problem question introduce considerations historical analysis. 6 In the last 6 a liturgical 6 must give way 6 an emphasis on analysis perspective to dogmatics. 7 From a strictly 7 the introduction 7 orients the 7 undue reliance on theological view of gnosticism serious scholar derivative point toward materials. 8 Most scholars 8 the underlying 8 provokes an 8 global seem to have question examination of perspectives. forgotten that 9 Under the guise 9 an ahistorical 9 tends toward 9 excessive use of of liberalism stance the 19th century frameworks. 0 One might say 0 a need to 0 drives us to 0 a soteriological master the data consider point of view. Those who have not yet mastered theological conversation will find this guide invaluable in conversing with peers and authorities. Simply think of any 4-digit number (say, 6518) and read off the similarly numbered phrases from columns A, B, C, and D. (For example, 6518 is "In the last analysis, the homiletic problem is further compounded by considering global perspectives.") Never mind what it means; just use it and watch the way you bring conversation to a halt. You can compose profound reports by using varied number combinations. As you become more proficient in its use, you may wish to experiment with varying the column sequence, e.g. , BACD, CBAD, etc. These advanced configurations are not recommended for beginners, however, requiring as they do sophisticated dexterity with punctuation. _________________________________________________________________ =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 13:07:30 +0000 (GMT) From: Robert Parry To: TALISMAN@indiana.edu Subject: an interesting text on divine figures Some of you may be familiar with the text "The World`s Sixteen Crucified Saviours or Christianity Before Christ" (6th Ed.) by Kersey Graves, 1875. It`s a fascinating narrative of some 35 divine-prophet characters sharing a similar phenomenology to the `life` and `death` of Christ. I`ve only just accessed it and have not had a chance to assess it. I thought at first it was one of those cepuscular late 19th c. tomes of automatic writing but it seems it isn`t and the author is in fact trying to deny Christianity`s uniqueness. There are the usual accounts of Chrishna (sic) and Budha Sakia (sic) as well as Muhammad (and Zoroaster). But of more than passing interest are the narratives of, among others, Salivahana of Bermuda!!!, Crite of Chaldea and Zulis of Egypt. I would be more than happy to pass this across to any interested Talismanian. I should warn you it is 806K but it looks a delightful read. regards one and all. Cyfarchion o Gymru. robert parry =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 14:39:54 +0100 To: Talisman@indiana.edu From: Peter Loehndorf Subject: nobody@REPLAY.COM (Anonymous) Cc: email@example.com I just got it, too! (Where did they have my email-address from?) - That reminds me sone 15 years back, where all (!) German LSA's got a copy of *Hermann Zimmer: A Fraudulent Testament devalues the Bahai Religion into Political Shogism* (BTW a stupid title for a book), Waiblingen/Stuttgart 1973 and other material. At that time there was only one mystery: Where did that old guy obtain the latest LSA-addresses from? - It was speculated - without results - that there must be someone from inside the Faith - in a promiment position (because this person had access to the mailings-lists) - , who *sells* information to Mr. Zimmer. At that period the Bahai mailing list was kept as a secret. NOBODY had access! At that time a was secretary of some National Bahai Commitee, and there was no chance for me at all to get access to the list. I had to phone for each address. I had better called Mr. Zimmer for he was in possession of all updated lists of German Bahais... To make it short: Where has Mr. Nobody got my address from? - Any idea??? Cordial greetings: Peter Fax +49-2803-8209 =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 09:00:01 -0500 From: "Ahang Rabbani" To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Gleanings II [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] Now that the World Centre is engaged in formulating details of the Four Year Plan, I like to put forth the suggestion that a selection from the Writings of Baha'u'llah be prepared as an objective of the forthcoming Plan. There is a Tablet from Abdu'l-Baha in Ma'idih-i Asimani, vol. 9, where He cautions against publishing Tablets too quickly and says that dissemination of Writings must correlate with spiritual development of the community. In light of this guidance, I suggest such a publication is propitious as during the past 4 decades we have benefited only from "Tablet of Baha'u'llah, revealed after the Kitab-i Aqdas", and more recently, "The Kitab-i Aqdas". There seems to be a significant need to publish additional Writings of Baha'u'llah in a near future as I believe the community has already absorbed these and is ready to expand its spiritual horizon. I further respectfully recommend that the published Kitab-i Aqdas be used as a model for such an undertaking in a sense of: 1. participation of wide-range of Baha'i scholars in both selection and translation process; 2. inclusion of substantial annotation elucidating obscure passages; 3. preparation of a detailed index; 4. use of the full Text of Tablets (as opposed to segments as in the Gleanings). I'm raising this suggestion for the collective consideration of Talisman. In the event that folks felt this suggestion worthy of submittal to the Supreme Body at this time, then I suggest we respectfully write a letter over the name of those Talismanians wishing to support such a recommendation. Therefore, here are options available to you to write back either directly to me or to the group: a. I think this a bad idea; b. I recommend such and such upgrades to this suggestion, but do not wish to add my name to the letter sent to World Centre; c. I recommend such and such upgrades and wish to add me name to the letter; d. I have no upgrades but add my name; e. Leave me alone! love, ahang. =END= From: "Lora McCall" To: email@example.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 10:30:03 CST Subject: Jim's reforms & Terry's plan Dear All -- For anyone who missed Terry's post re: Jim's reforms, here's a recap. I am watching and participating in the process he's advocating, and can attest to its validity. Until we are ready to honestly and courageously tackle the hard work of rooting out the pervasive materialism, cancerous secularism, and inveterate racialism in our midst (Terry's words), we will not be able to bridge the gap between the Baha'i community and the world community. And this, we must do. Otherwise, there's nothing to give to the world. No amount of enthusiasm -- no matter how sincere and well-meaning -- can "sustain people for the long struggle towards personal and collective transformation." It just isn't going to happen. National, ABMs, Hands, even the House can't do this for us. That's the corporate/ecclesiastical model. It doesn't work! It will never work. Let's get on with it. Terry's Suggestions for a Plan: 1) Build a House of Worship - not a Bahai center - and have the believers do it. 2) Hold daily worship services with music - in the morning 3) Identify the human needs of the Bahai community, their social and economic concerns for themselves and their children, and organize the first dependency of the House of Worship. 4) Once 3 has been done, extend the benefit of the community's response to the city in which you live. 5) Consult and consult! Really consult about what service activities are most meaningful to the believers and for which there are pressing needs in your city that have a clear spiritual component. If anyone is not sure have them refer to Abdul Baha in Selections p 3 "Soon will your swiftly passing days," to help you begin. 6) Then systematically begin doing the results of 5 above. Now, if anyone thinks this is a big ego trip for Terry, please think again. Where do you imagine that he gets all this stuff? -- From Baha'u'llah!! [ No, I don't mean he has an 800 number to God like some TV evangelists claim they have] :) I mean that he reads, prays, ponders, thinks, meditates, studies ... Oh, wait a second, we're ALL supposed to do those things, too. So, this isn't about waiting for a brilliant plan to descend upon us from above; it's about owning this Faith and making it work within ourselves and in our communities. We each have a unique constellation of gifts and talents to bring with us to the table. So, bring yours! This is a democracy! No more excuses. Now that I sound a little like a TV evangelist myself, let's get busy! --- Lora McCall, Budding Radical Democrat =END= From: "Cary E. Reinstein" To: "firstname.lastname@example.org" Subject: TOTD: Sig line found while surfing Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 08:52:26 -0800 "The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding." -- Justice Louis Brandeis =END= From: TLCULHANE@AOL.COM Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 09:27:56 -0500 To: email@example.com Subject: re: maturity and eucharist Dear friends , Rob had writtten that he thought a sense of "eucharist" would be the participation in the Body of Bahau llah and that the Bahai candidate for "eucharist would be elections for administrative insitutions at Ridvan . I must admit to not having considered this as eucharistic . Growing up in a conservative Roman Catholic household my sense of the eucharist is a little different . The body of Christ as eucharist was a participatory event in which one could experience the Presence of God ; Nima's reference to Ibn Arabi and the "Presence of Being". This , as a symbolic act, was a portal into a world that was infused with God's grace. To participate in the event was to be bathed in that Grace. It was a numinous affair ; the presence of the "Holy". mysterium tremendum. " As Bahau llah might say it is the blessing conferred at the hour of dawn when one is "occupied with His remembrance" and has directed " his steps to the Mashriqu l Adhkar" to "listen to the verses of God." In so doing we participate in " those worlds that can neither be expressed in words nor intimated by allusion." I guess my candidate for a Bahai "eucharist" is the gathering for prayer at the House of Worship. Perhaps it is a different sense of what comunity is all about . Mine , for better or worse has little to do with administration as an end in itself which is what the experience of eucharist is - an end in itself. Come to think of it I have had a few eucharistic experiences as a Bahai and I can not imagine any better one at the moment than Lora Mc Call chanting the Halih , Halih in the House of Worship -- loudly -- (to use the silently , softly , loudly formulation that Jackson gave us a couple of days ago .) That is to experience the body of Baha u lah, the Haykal . warm regards , Terry =END= From: Member1700@aol.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 12:28:17 -0500 To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: Nobody Well, having finally seen the "nobody" post, it seems to me quite certain that it is coming from John Carre (who is a Covenant-breaker) or someone associated with him. It does not appear to me that he wrote the post himself, since he is usually a little more long-winded than that. But, the arguments are certainly his. He is very fond of that quotation from Ruhiyyih Khanum, which she obviously intended to refer to the passing of the Guardian, but which he takes to mean the coming of a new manifestation of God. It is possible, by the way to receive the e-mail addresses of everyone on Talisman through a request to Majordomo. Anyway, this whole position that Carre takes that a Manifestation of God is about to appear soon, but he hasn't appeared yet, strikes me as rather silly. Just what are we supposed to do about that, anyway? I think that it reflects Carre's frustration at having followed the wrong claimant twice now (Remey, Ma'ani) and wanting to maintain his position, but not follow anyone else further into the wilderness. Poor thing. Maybe we should pray for him? Warmest, Tony =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 10:55:01 -0500 From: "Ahang Rabbani" To: "Stephen Bedingfield" , firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: RE: Twin Holy Birthdays [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] Dear Stephen, I think the reason that folks did not reply to your note is because there is very little to add to your excellent tabulation. But as you've asked, here is my 2 cents and I'm putting it on Talisman perchance others may offer corrections. I have a recollection that there is a restriction from the Guardian on celebrating the Twin Holy Birthdays on lunar basis, pending legislation from the House on the whole question of Baha'i calendar. Someone with REFER can perhaps confirm this, but if not, then I say its well worth asking the World Centre. What I can add to your table is: 1. Basically your "East" and "BWC" columns will be identical as all observances in the Holy Land follow the practice of the Baha'i community of Iran. 2. Declaration of the Bab is on Lunar basis in East and BWC. 3. Ascension of Baha'u'llah is always on Solar basis, since the date of it is "70 days past Naw-Ruz". Since Naw-Ruz is on solar basis so is Ascension of Baha'u'llah. 4. Martyrdom of the Bab is on Lunar basis. (Could one of the World Centre people please confirm this, either privately or publicly? But I'm 99.9% certain its Lunar basis in the East.) 5. Day of Covenant is always on Solar basis, because Abdu'l-Baha said its observed as the farthest point away from Baha'u'llah's Ascension, ergo Solar and fixed on Nov 26th. 6. Ascension of Abdu'l-Baha is observed on Solar basis everywhere. (The rule of thumb is that an event is observed on Solar basis unless specifically ordained otherwise.) Incidentally, the legislation of the House on the question of Baha'i calendar is a relatively complicated thing requiring among other things decision on Baha'i meridian and the spot serving as the Baha'i point for spring equinox. I favor Shiraz. This year, God willing, my family will celebrate the Twin Holy Birthdays at the Holy Land. best wishes, ahang. =END= From: "Steven Kolins" To: email@example.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 13:01:50 EST Subject: WOMEN LEAD with their hearts You shall never know who I am or what I mean But I will be good health to you nevertheless..... -Walt Whitman , 'A WHITE PAPER-Women lead with their hearts' and here how you can access on cyberspace http://www.webcom.com/hrtmath/IHM/Articles/WWP/WWP1.html QUANTA DAWN-LIGHT All I need is Freedom of spirit, Chastity of soul, and Purity of heart. A pov is not even secondary. =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 10:41:21 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (DEREK COCKSHUT ) Subject: RE Youth , reform and the future. To: email@example.com Dear Talismanians . There was a recent thread asking about the Dallas youth conference and the attitudes from it . At Bosch last weekend we had the annual College Club weekend . Most of them had been at Dallas . Let me tell you we have to be very proud of our Baha'i youth . I sat there listening to how they have changed their majors to be of more service to mankind . How nothing is too much to do for this Cause and they intend to make a difference . So watch out USA Baha'i Community they are coming and you better enjoy the ride . By the way one person commented the youth love the NSA , yes they do and the House of Justice . They seem to think the problem of low growth and community development is at the Local level . How strange I agree with them in that. Kindest Regards Derek cockshut =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 11:00:55 -0800 To: Sadra From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Marguerite K. Gipson) Subject: Re: The Qabbalah in a nutshell! Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu Just wanted you to know that there are lessons on this... Over the Internet... To obtain a Class Calendar and enrollment details, send e-mail to Calendar@Horizons.Org - or enroll for classes instantly by visiting our virtual campus on the World Wide Web: http://horizons.org/campus/ At 01:04 AM 1/10/96 -0700, Sadra wrote: >Dear Marguerite Gipson and illustrious talizens-- > > The following post I've put together from some of the notes I've taken >over the past few years from my readings of Gershom Scholem and Leo >Schaya on the Kabbalah, and a short paper comparing the Kabbalah & >Isma'ilism I've neglected to finish, so there could be some mistakes and >misintepretations on my part. I hope this is what you're looking for, >Marguerite, and I highly recommend you read Schaya's book _The Universal >Meaning of the Kabbalah_ and any work by Gershom Scholem. > > =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 13:22:11 -0600 (CST) From: Saman Ahmadi To: talisman Subject: Re: Gleanings II Dear Ahang, c. with a minor suggestion: in the event that the Tablet is a response to questions from someone, that the questions be published as well (though in most cases these are not available). regards, sAmAn =END= From: "Marc Lustig" To: email@example.com (Burl Barer), firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 20:18:39 +0000 Subject: Re: (Weitergel.) The Future of God's Faith > >Dear Folks: > > > >Yesterday I got the following message in my mailbox. > > > This letter, which several of us received, is from a Covenant Breaker > who, the last we heard, has yet to have a follower, all though he is working > on it. Study the Will and Testament of Abdul Baha for the Master's > admonitions concerning violators of our Holy Covenant. Thanks. Not that I'm interested, but does someone know his/her name ? Marc ********************************************************* Marc Lustig University of Duisburg, Germany Dept. for Social Sciences and Philosophy E-Mail: email@example.com FAX +49 (203) 288520 Moderator - List Manager ...keep your secret thoughts pure... ('Abdu'l-Baha) ********************************************************* =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 14:50:37 EWT From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu Subject: Iran, the Eucharist, etc. To: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Saman, Nima and anyone else who is interested in the Iranian thread - I think you are buying into Iranian conspiracy theories. The U.S. didn't "do more" during the 1979 revolution because a) Jimmy Carter was president and he wasn't one to send in the troops and b) because there really wasn't anything the U.S. could do, even if there had been a more militaristic president in power. The Shah made up his mind that he wasn't going to continue to carry out a war against his own people. His decision to leave seems to have been his own - not that of the U.S. government. Rob's and Terry's comments about "the eucharist" both interested me and made me a bit uneasy. Like my fellow ex-Catholic Terry, I too felt that associating the concept of the eucharist with anything administrative was off the mark. The fact that the idea even entered someone's mind was a bit startling. It made me wonder - once again - if there could ever be a shared notion of what constituted a spiritual communal life - at least in the American Baha'i community. In my opinion, Terry is absolutely correct that Baha'i communities should be building mashriqu'l adhkars. The Baha'is have gone on long enough meeting in drab dreary centers or in each other's homes. I fear that the American Baha'i community is going to develop a self image of a group of co-religionists who sit in living rooms together and read from books. Perhaps it has already done so and, therefore, there has been no pressure on the central institutions to break out of this mold. The sterility that comes with no having a house of worship means that there is no place to become spiiritually rejuvenated. I still love going into a church or a mosque (a real one - not these American style mosques that really are just the equivalents of Baha'i centers) to feel a sense of awe. A building constructed as an expression of one's devotion for God is a wondrous thing. Of course, coming from a Catholic background, I don't think that such a building should be at all simple. It should be as grand and glorious as possible, both inside and out. The challenge here, of course, is being able to come to terms with people such as Rob Stockman who wouldn't agree at all with me about what constitutes proper Baha'i architecture. The other problem with not having a house of worship - and one where there are regular care takers - is that there can never be an activity that does not involve the initiative and effort of individuals. Now, to most Baha'is that probably does not seem so bad. After all, we are told that we should exert ourselves, etc. However, there comes a point - and I think it is reached quite early - when people don't wish to have to exert so much energy to feel spiritually enriched. If there were a house of worship in a community, then the believers could simply gather there, enjoy the spiritual and communal experience. One person would not be responsible for organizing an event, cleaning house, preparing food, cleaning up, etc. Instead, people could gather in "God's house" removed from the profane, mundane world. As for other issues, I do not have time now to write about this myself, but I w ould like to see comments on the issue of the Guardian's attitude towards Nazi Germany. This is an issue that has bothered me a great deal. Do others have thoughts on it? Linda =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 14:49:00 -0600 (CST) From: Saman Ahmadi To: talisman Subject: Re: Iran, the Eucharist, etc. Dear Linda, You wrote: > Dear Saman, Nima and anyone else who is interested in the Iranian thread - I > think you are buying into Iranian conspiracy theories. The U.S. didn't "do > more" during the 1979 revolution because a) Jimmy Carter was president and he > wasn't one to send in the troops and b) because there really wasn't anything > the U.S. could do, even if there had been a more militaristic president in > power. The Shah made up his mind that he wasn't going to continue to carry > out a war against his own people. His decision to leave seems to have > been his own - not that of the U.S. government. I agree with your points but, and this is purely conjecture on my part, there were probably military leaders in the Shah's army that could have been used by the U.S. to doing something - what, I am not exactly sure. There are other wider conspiracy theories: that Iran was developing too fast and the Shah was not being manipulated as effectively as when he was placed in the throne at 17. The Shah was saying that the Oil will not last forever and the price must be higher. This has already gone way off anything related to the Faith - but it is interesting! regards, sAmAn =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 14:33:54 -0600 (CST) From: Robert Lee Green To: Cheshmak A Farhoumand Cc: "email@example.com" Subject: Amatu'l-Baha Teaching Crusade Sorry that this has taken so long to get posted, but here it is. This is the nine general proposals the several communities, 28 assemblies agreed to when we started to learn about Houston's teaching successes. They have been edited a little to be specific to our concerns but those editions should be obvious, because they are city names. Some of the items have been changed by decision of the individual I-ACTS, but these are the general guidelines which we began with. Entry By Troops 1. Entry By Troops A. We move that we begin the entry by troops process. B. We move that entry by troops according to this process be named the Amatu'l-Baha Teaching Crusade, for at least one year. C. We move that the process of entry by troops be in collaboration with the Addison, Carrollton, Coppell, Denton, Flower Mound, Lewisville, and The Colony Spiritual Assemblies, and the following groups Aubrey, Argyle, Decatur and Highland Village. 2. Teaching Teams A. We move to have a full time teaching team comprised of 3-5 members including a team leader. B. We move to have full time teaching team members for a minimum of one month. C. We move to have available a deputization fund for full time teachers. D. We move to deputize full time teachers for $300.00 per month. E. We move not to deputize part time teachers. F. We move to have the full time teaching team start in Lewisville for 6 months. 3. Center and Housing A. We move to rent a Baha'i Center prior to the Inauguration weekend 6-8 weeks from now. B. We move to rent a Baha'i house or houses for the full time teachers. 4. Inter-Assembly Council for Teaching A. We move to appoint an Inter-Assembly Council for Teaching (I-ACT), comprised of at least three members of each Assembly involved. B. We move that each assembly select its own liaisons to the council. C. We move that the responsibilities of the I-ACT will be to carry out the major decisions of the Assemblies with regards to entry by troops under the Amatu'l-Baha Teaching Crusade. D. We move that the I-ACT have executive power to act on major decisions of the Assemblies regarding entry by troops under the Amatu'l-Baha Teaching Crusade. E. We move that all members of the Assemblies are encouraged to join, consult, and vote at any of the meetings held by the I-ACT. F. We move that groups and isolated believers be included as members of the I-ACT. G. We move that Assemblies openly and whole-heartedly support the decisions of the I-ACT. 5. Teaching Institutes A. We move to initiate teacher training institutes, which all teachers must attend before joining the Amatu'l-Baha Teaching Crusade on a full time or part time basis. We move to allow no exceptions to this rule. B. We move to have teacher training institutes each Sunday from 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. C. We move to have the purpose of the teacher training institutes be as follows: 1. to spiritually prepare the teachers 2. to orient them with the process of entry by troops D. We recommend that the Spiritual Assembly of Garland be sponsor of preparation and organization as well as the selection of the site for the teacher training institutes. 6. Consolidation of New Believers A. Nightly Metings 1. We move to have nightly meetings at Baha'i center and provide children activities also. 2. We move that nightly meetings consist of Baha'i video programs, slide presentations, formal classes, as well as individual consolidation for new believers. 3. We move that a nine-part new believers deepening be used as the basis for deepening new believers who come to the centers. 4. We move that nightly meeting be prepared in advance and publicized in flyers which the teachers hand out to new believers. B. Weekend Institutes 1. We move to have three-hour weekend institutes, using the Core Curriculum as the basis, be held each Saturday and Sunday for new believers and their children. 2. We move that the purpose of the weekend institutes be to give more detailed understanding of the faith to new believers. 3. We move that I-ACT appoint a Core Curriculum trained individual to organize the weekend institutes for new believers and their children. 4. We move to have the weekend institutes announced in a flyer to be given to every new believer. C. Monthly Institutes 1. We move to have a 2-day institute for new believers monthly. Particular effort to encourage new believers to attend these monthly meetings. 2. We move to have the monthly institutes in an area free from distractions. 3. We move that the Spiritual Assembly of _________ be in charge of organizing and preparing the monthly institutes. D. Home Visits 1. We move that visiting new believers at home be an integral part of consolidation, teachers should offer new believers this option. E. Initial Follow-up 1. We move that the initial teacher must recontact new believers within 48 hours after enrollment. 2. We move that after the initial follow-up by the teachers and introduction to other community members, the Assembly and the community be in charge of continued consolidation of new believers. F. New Believers 1. We move that we set the goal of having at least 10% of the new believers become teachers. 2. We move that teachers offer new believers the opportunity to join teaching efforts as soon as possible. G. Mass Media 1. We move that we use mass media, such as nightly cable programming, for consolidation, between 6-9 months from now. 7. Literature and Library A. Pamphlets 1. We move to give each seeker at least one pamphlet. 2. We move to initially order 10,000 pamplets for the I-ACT area. B. Booklets 1. We move that the teachers have the following booklets: a. Words of God b. Small prayer book c. On Becoming a Baha'i C. Bookstore 1. We move to stock the Baha'i center with all the writings of the Bab, Baha'u'llah, Abdu'l-Baha and Shoghi Effendi that are in print, as well as other selected books. D. Enrollments Cards 1. We move to order 2,500 enrollment cards E. Red Teaching Booklets 1. We move to order 500 copies of the Red Teaching Booklet. 8. Coordinating Office A. We move to open and Entry By Troops Coordinating Office. B. We move that purpose of Entry By Troop Coordinating Office include: 1. Recruiting full time and part time teachers 2. Coordinating and assigning full time teachers 3. Working with the Assemblies to select team leaders and team members. 4. Ordering materials, pamphlets, flyers, etc. on behalf of the I-ACTs in the Metroplex. 5. Supervising and working closely with the Consolidation Coordinator. 9. Expenses A. We move to establish an entry by troops ear marked fund to cover fixed and monthly expenses. Fixed expenses are not include in our long range budget, because most of them are one time, start up cost. 1. Baha'i Center Deposit $750.00 2. Repairs ? 3. Utilities Deposits ? 4. Furnishing the Center ? B. We move to include Monthly expenses in our long range budget, because we must be able to sustain them and monitor our financial health. 1. Baha'i Center rent $750.00 2. Housing Rents ? 3. Utilities ? 4. Full time teacher deputizing $900.00 5. Transportation ? 6. 1000 Monthly pamphlets ? 7. 1000 Monthly booklet ? 8. 1000 Monthly flyers ? 9. Entry By Troops Coordinating Office $300.00 per I-ACT 10. Miscellaneous ? Some of the expenses we have not had to deal with yet, and others I don't have access to here. In any event, these motions provide impetus for action. But should not be considered anything more than a bunch of suggestions which the friends in different parts of the world have found very attractive :-) ------------------------------------------------ | "O SON OF SPIRIT! | Robert Green | My first counsel is this: Possess a pure, | rlg0001 | kindly and radiant heart, that thine may | @jove.acs.unt.edu | be a sovereignty ancient, imperishable | | and everlasting." - Baha'u'llah | ------------------------------------------------ =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 13:14 PST To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Burl Barer) Subject: Re: Iran, the Eucharist, etc. >Linda, overcome with visions of lovely Eastern Washington architecture wrote: >In my opinion, Terry is absolutely correct that Baha'i communities should be >building mashriqu'l adhkars. The Baha'is have gone on long enough meeting in >drab dreary centers or in each other's homes. Burl says: Ok. How does a community of 18 adults with meager finanacial resources get a House of Worship? Pay for it? Maintain it? Lets get real and realistic. In our community we have enough small kids that we cannot have childrens classes in someone's kitchen. This is a small town with limited venues available. The LSA approached the Congregational Church about us renting their fellowship facility. The pastor was cool about it, but the congregation nixed the idea because they didn't want to appear to be affiliated with Baha'is (yeah, guess that would be a pretty rude insult). Hearing of our plight, the local Jewish community graciously offered us use of their lovely community center as long as we kept the kids from going into the Temple part and unraveling the Torahs. Then some of the local Baha'is said "Oh No! People will think we are affiliated with Jews!" Oy! There is obviously a pecking order in minority religions and anti-semitism exists in the Baha'i community. Burl ******************************************************* Order MAN OVERBOARD, the new book by Burl Barer today! ******************************************************* =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 16:36:48 EWT From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu Subject: Tony, I need to reach you To: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Tony, I tried to reach you with your private e-mail address, but could not get through. Could you e-mail me. That way I only have to press the "r" key. I can usually manage that. Linda =END= From: Mark Walter Salata Subject: unsubscribe Talisman To: email@example.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 16:58:17 -0500 (EST) please unsubscribe Talisman firstname.lastname@example.org =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 17:11:33 -0500 (EST) From: Richard Vernon Hollinger To: Saman Ahmadi Cc: talisman Subject: Re: Iran, the Eucharist, etc. On Wed, 10 Jan 1996, Saman Ahmadi wrote: > > I agree with your points but, and this is purely conjecture on my > part, there were probably military leaders in the Shah's army that > could have been used by the U.S. to doing something - what, I am > not exactly sure. I seriously doubt it. I once discussed this with one of the senior officers of the American embassy, who said the Brezenski had, in fact, directed them to seek the intervention of the Army (he said the embassy kept getting contradictory directives from the National Security Advisor and the Secretary of State--the latter, of course, having *de juris* authority in these matters). They had met with the leadership of the military, who, to a man, opposed intervention, believing that the revolution was a *fait acomplis* and that such a move would threaten the integrity of the army. They probably feared--and rightly, if they did--that the rank-and-file soldiers could not be trusted to follow orders if they were called upon to suppress anti-government demonstrators. The popularity of the revolutionary movement insured the neutrality of most of the military, and allowed the overthrow of the government with comparatively little armed struggle--compared, at least to the rural revolutions that had taken place in the decades prior to this. I don't really buy into the theory that the revolution came about because the Shah and his US allies were too soft. Early on in the revolutionary movement, the military intervened in a number of instances (first in Tabriz, as I recall), when local authorities refused to fire on unarmed demonstrators. And thousands of unarmed Iranians were killed in the attempts to suppress this movement. The key to its success, in my opinion, is that despite these acts of repression, the movement continued to grow This, I think, has a great deal to do with the centrality of martyrdom in Shi'i popular culture, which meant that many Iranians were willing to risk their lives for a cause they felt to be just. I suppose the US could have intervened militarily to prevent the overthrow of the government, but it would have resulted in a horrible bloodbath. Richard > > There are other wider conspiracy theories: that Iran was developing > too fast and the Shah was not being manipulated as effectively > as when he was placed in the throne at 17. The Shah was saying that > the Oil will not last forever and the price must be higher. > > This has already gone way off anything related to the Faith - > but it is interesting! > > regards, > sAmAn > > > =END= From: Dave10018@aol.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 17:32:20 -0500 To: LORA_M@meddeans.creighton.edu, email@example.com Subject: Re: Jim's reforms & Terry's plan Yes! It seems to me that we tend to get nowhere because we expect to be led by our administration which provides a kind of minimal leadership while waiting(whether deliberately or not) for --us-- to take the initiative. Think of the admistrative order as a kind of zen master-(as popularly conceived) posing impossible riddles and then waiting patiently to whack us when we get it wrong, rather than showing us what to do. We need to try, in spite of all the discouragement! Other thoughts, but i just wanted to take a moment to be positive! if things keep going the way they are on aol at the moment, i will be showing up from compuserve--a stopgap on the way to an internet provider. david taylor =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 14:51 PST To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Burl Barer) Subject: WWW Did someone say there is an htp:///www address related to Talisman? What is it? I wanna go look at it. Burl PS: I thought any house or room where Baha'is meet for prayers is House of Worship -- I've seen a quote to that effect...anyone got it handy? ******************************************************* Order MAN OVERBOARD, the new book by Burl Barer today! ******************************************************* =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 15:14:13 -0900 To: "Eric D. Pierce" , "K. Paul Johnson" , firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Arsalan J. Sadighi) Subject: Re: Jim's reforms & Terry's plan In my opinion, the problem is a lack of communication between the institutions and the body of believers. I doubt very much that when a friend is elected to any of the institutions of the Faith he or she immediately changes colours and decides to do his or her utmost to harm the Faith. I feel that the most precious constant thread amongst us is that we love His Cause and we want to the best we can. I am convinced that the members of the institutions also want the best for the Faith. The members of these institutions (in this case the National Spiritual Assemblies) work very hard, sacrifice far beyond what is observable, and are under constant pressure from the House, the Teaching Center, and sometimes the counsellors to get the job done. I am sure they very much appreciate any individual initiative as long it does not cause disunity within the community. I do believe that we are all in this together. We can not separate ourselves from the bodies that are supposed to guide us. We fail if they fail, they fail miserably if the believers do not sincerely believe in them, love them, and respect the institutions. Reform, if necessary, must come from within the institutions, as long as we have been able to communicate our longings to them. Loving Baha'i greetings, Arsalan > >It seems to me that we tend to get nowhere because we expect to be led by our >administration which provides a kind of minimal leadership while >waiting(whether deliberately or not) for --us-- to take the initiative. Think >of the admistrative order as a kind of zen master-(as popularly conceived) >posing impossible riddles and then waiting patiently to whack us when we get >it wrong, rather than showing us what to do. > >We need to try, in spite of all the discouragement! > >Other thoughts, but i just wanted to take a moment to be positive! > >if things keep going the way they are on aol at the moment, i will be showing >up from compuserve--a stopgap on the way to an internet provider. > >david taylor > > Arsalan J. Sadighi P.O. Box 23076 Juneau, AK 99802-3076 (907) 463-4668 Residence (907) 465-5776 Business (907) 463-4648 Residential Fax (907) 465-3450 Business Fax =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 19:10:08 -0500 (EST) From: jwalbrid To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Iranian conspiracies Conspiracy theories are very much part of the Iranian mentality. The Shah died believing that the Revolution was ordered by the US and the USSR working together. He thought Mossadegh was a British agent. His father, Reza Shah, thought the crown prince (i.e., the last Shah) was a British agent. Various people think that Khomeini was a British agent. And, of course, there are always the Freemasons, the Baha'is, Alexander the Great and the Hellenists, the Crusaders, etc., who are linked in various sinister ways to oppose the forces of light. john walbridge =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 17:09:26 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: The `79 Revolution Linda jan and others-- I don't see how I'm buying into a conspiracy theory. I agree the U.S. had its hands tied during the revolution, and thus couldn't really do anything tangible to protect its interests, and that the events of 78-79 where a popular uprising against a brutal dictatorship. So, I'm not one to buy into a BBC/CIA conspiracy like most of my fellow expatriates, so I agree with Richard Hollinger. On the other hand, this is the Cold War era we're talking about and the US did attempt, and perhaps to a certain level of success as well, to use events in Iran to its own benefit against the Soviet Union, thus the Soviet Invasion of Aghanistan. Btw, the late Soviet foreign minister, Andrei Gromyko, partially admits this in his last book before he died. Richard, you need to read General Robert Dutch Huyser's book _Mission to Tehran_ about the supposed neutrality of senior Iranian military officers (it's not that they were neutral, so much as ambivalent and plagued by indecision). As a side note, Richard, a segment of the military did in fact revolt against the new revolutionary situation: the Imperial Guard Command corps and senior Air Force officers at the Dushan Tappe military base planned and tried to carry out an aborted coup d'etat. The revolt was put down immediately by the combined forces of the Peoples Mujahideen Organization, Fadayeen-i Khalq, The Confederation of Iranian Communist paramilitary units, Revolutionary Guards, an ad hoc "Peoples" contingency force sent from Tehran and average run-of-the-mill people who happened to be in the area at the time and armed by the former. On the American side: It's a well known fact that most liberals in the establishment here were not in the least bit happy with the chummy attitude taken by Johnson, Nixon and Ford with regard to the Shah, and that as far as the new administration was concerned in `77, things would change -- Gary Sick says this in his book. Once the crisis came, Carter, a southern liberal, wasn't exactly forthcoming in saving the Shah's proverbial "chest-nuts out of the fire," regardless of his later-to-prove-embarrasing New Years eve 1977 speech in Tehran (the famous "...Island of stability in a sea of troubles..." and "...our natural ally..." speech). Furthermore, I don't believe it was so much the case that the Shah didn't wish to carry out a war against his own people, and that is why he left; I seriously doubt noble sentiments were at work. After all, what did he care, he brutally suppressed a massive, popular revolt in the early 60s, unleashed the army against the Baha'is in the mid-50s, then the Kurds (and Baluchis, if I remember correctly) in the early 70s, and don't forget 1953. The Shah was a highly unstable and flackey personality; he pulled the same stunt back in 1953 when he left the country for a few days in protest against Mossadeq. No, Shapour Bakhtiar's specific condition in becoming the "National-Reconciliation" Prime Minister was that "His Majesty" (alA-hazrat homAyoonee ShAhanshAh AryAmehr) leave Iran for an unspecified period of time -- a "long vacation" is what the Shah himself called it in his press conference. Needless to say the Shah's goose (as well as Bakhtiar's) was cooked when he actually agreed to this, but he had no real choice in the matter either. A final side note: a Regency Council was set-up headed by the Queen, Farah Diba, in absentia and she was planning to return and facilitate the step-to-power of her son, Reza, when events took over. Regards, Nima p.s. Btw, as far as conspiracy theories go, I find it mighty peculiar that a 1977-78 best-seller fictional suspense novel, _The Crash of `79_ (can't remember the author), predicted the fall of the Shah almost to the year. =END= From: "Steven Kolins" To: email@example.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 19:16:57 EST Subject: intuitive intellect/leading by heart Dear Bev, Your post touched my heart. Here is excerpts from the article Women lead with their hearts, by Doc Lew Childre "Some groups react to group negativity by taking a "mind stance." An example would be, "We don't have to be wimps anymore, let's talk about some project we can do." This can divert energy from the complaints and moaning, but also a calloused heart which doesn't nurture anyone...More people are realizing that solutions will require opening the heart. As social stress mounts, politicians, community leaders, and individuals are demanding a return to heart values and now there is scientific evidence why... These heart qualities must be felt and actualized. It's not just sufficient to just talk about them or make them religious or political slogans to generate wholeness power... study conducted by Dr. Clemens Kirschblaum at the University of Trier in Germany showed that men who turn to women for psychological support are helped dramatically, while there's little or no change when men turn to other men. The same study found that women's blood pressure falls when they pour out their emotions to other women, but their stress levels rise when they confide in a husband or boyfriend. Women and men are different, but it's power of the heart that can bring men and women to a balanced understanding of the differences.... Men tend to be more absorbed in structures and plans.... TALISMAN PROVES THE POINT!! lovingly, QUANTA DAWN-LIGHT P.S I posted the http:// earlier. In fact, someone else gave another article about humility/forgiveness and its effect on heart, I think.All I need is Freedom of spirit, Chastity of soul, and Purity of heart. A pov is not even secondary. =END= From: "pesky feller" To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 16:37:28 PST8PDT Subject: aggregated population distribution per community Cc: email@example.com Hi, I thought this discussion thread originally started with reference to the 4 year (mass expansion) plan issues. How did small non-growing or slow-growing communities get thrown in? Does anyone have the stats on the population distribution of local Baha'i communities (in USA, and/or other countries)? In other words per country, something like: ......................... Baha'i headcount: ......................... electable adult population % of country # communites per community (LSA or group) ------------ ------------ ---------------------------- a1.......... a2.......... 1-8 b1.......... b2.......... 9-29 c1.......... c2.......... 30-99 d1.......... d2.......... 100-499 e1.......... e2.......... 500-999 f1.......... f2.......... 1000 or more ------------ ------------ 100% ### total ............ count of ............ communities where a2, b2, ... f2 are the unknown data values and a1, b2, ... f1 are the % of communities in that population range for the country. ("electable" or "adult" can mean whatever you want it to.) If the numbers are available at finer granularity, send them in and I'll do the aggregate breakdown and percentages. Any suggestions for other aggregate groupings will be appreciated. If the numbers aren't available for the USA, for fun (?!?) everybody send me or the list your guesses, and I'll compile them. Thanks, Eric D. Pierce (PierceED@csus.edu) Data Janitor Cal. State Univ., Sacramento > Date sent: Wed, 10 Jan 96 13:14 PST > To: firstname.lastname@example.org > From: email@example.com (Burl Barer) > Subject: Re: Iran, the Eucharist, etc. > >Linda, overcome with visions of lovely Eastern Washington architecture wrote: > >In my opinion, Terry is absolutely correct that Baha'i communities should be > >building mashriqu'l adhkars. The Baha'is have gone on long enough meeting in > >drab dreary centers or in each other's homes. > > Burl says: > Ok. How does a community of 18 adults with meager finanacial resources > get a House of Worship? Pay for it? Maintain it? Lets get real and > realistic. In our community we have enough small kids that we cannot have > childrens classes in someone's kitchen. This is a small town with limited > venues available. The LSA approached the Congregational Church about us > renting their fellowship facility. The pastor was cool about it, but the > congregation nixed the idea because they didn't want to appear to be > affiliated with Baha'is (yeah, guess that would be a pretty rude insult). > Hearing of our plight, the local Jewish community graciously offered us use > of their lovely community center as long as we kept the kids from going into > the Temple part and unraveling the Torahs. Then some of the local Baha'is > said "Oh No! People will think we are affiliated with Jews!" Oy! There is > obviously a pecking order in minority religions > and anti-semitism exists in the Baha'i community. > If the Baha'i community had 1% of the cultural richness and intellectual tradition of the Jewish community I would be very happy. It's snack time, maybe I'll have a bagel. Bye. > Burl > > ******************************************************* > Order MAN OVERBOARD, the new book *not about mashriqu'l adhkars* by Burl Barer today! > ******************************************************* > :):):):) =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 16:18:01 -0500 From: "Ahang Rabbani" To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Fadil-i Mazandarani [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] I'm pleased to report that very significant steps are being taken at certain quarters to commence the process which will culminate, God willing, in publication of Fadil's works in the course of next several years. Its premature, however, to discuss the details at this time (nor do I really know everything) but be assured that very exciting things are happening. Some of the friends on Talisman have forwarded some of the postings on this thread to their friends, which is fine. However, some of these other people have started a campaign of their own in support of Fadil. As an example, I just learned that the NSA of Canada was approached about publishing some of Fadil's work, etc. As such, I want to explain, and please spread the word to others, that its best not to become over-zealous with this effort and in fact to cool it. If a perception is formed in certain corridors that an organized campaigned is formed, this will most certainly reflect negatively on everyone's intend and may even result in further delays in publication of his writings. So, please tell those you've been forwarding these postings that: Everything is working out beautifully and to rest assured that the institutions of the Cause are now positively engaged in the process. You see, Talisman can do a lot good .... I just want to make sure we don't undo it... best regards, ahang. =END= From: TLCULHANE@aol.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 19:49:25 -0500 To: email@example.com Subject: re: eucharist Worship etc. Dear Burl , here is how a community of 18 adults with meager financial resources does it . Omaha is a community of about 24 adults and we are in the process of doing it . 1) You begin to save money and put it into an irrevocable trust that cannot be spent on anything else. 2) You look for a rental facility - which you have been doing - and if the Jewish Community Center will rent to you wonderful . If folks have a problem with being identified with Jews tell them to get over it and see the Aqdas with its Divine command to "consort with the followers of all religions in friendliness and fellowship. 3) Have the communtiy take a long hard look at its enrollments over the past 10 years and why most of the children as youth have a difficult time identifying with the Faith - Dereks youth group notwithstanding . This means giving people permission to really explore why they are Bahais and what really matters to them. Ask parents what it is that they want for their children and then invest in it at home rather than everywhere else . 4_ Buy land for the House of Worship . 5) watch the level of enrollments slowly but surely increase as Bahais start to focus on manifesting their committment to a place - not any place - but the place they live . That means no longer devaluing those who do not go off on interntional piooeer trips but instead are praised for doing the hard daily work of building a local community and being committed to a place. 6) get together with neighboring communities and pool resources to build a House of Worship and community center . I am not familiar with Eastern Wash. but I am sure there must be additional Bahais within say a 50-60 mile radius =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 15:14:33 -0900 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Robert Johnston) Subject: SDC 10: "They take no pride in gold and silver" Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Talismans, Despite an absence of clear and explicit support from the Holy Texts, the Guardian, and the House, our dear Ahang has said this dispensation has been blessed with three Manifestations of God. It seems, now, that even he feels that he is not right. His own letter of today states: "This year, God willing, my family will celebrate the Twin Holy Birthdays at the Holy Land." These matters are sometimes a bit confusing. I can think of one place where Baha'u'llah identifies with the Imam (Husayn?) who died and was decapitated on the plain of Karbila. Perhaps Quddus' relationship was similar. Mark Foster, no doubt, has a good explanation this, but, IMV, the unity must be levels other than that/those of "Manifestationship". Remember that Baha'u'llah was also a "human being". Differentation between Manifestations and other beings centres on things like the fact that Manifestations of God, uniquely, bring a new "Book" and inaugurate new universal religions. The Imams and Quaddus did neither. In the following SDC passage, the exalted stations are listed in descending order... Notice the emphasis 'Abdu'l-Baha places on the incompatibility of leadership and excessive desire for material gain. Robert. SDC 10 The highest station, the supreme sphere, the noblest, most sublime position in creation, whether visible or invisible, whether alpha or omega, is that of the Prophets of God, notwithstanding the fact that for the most part they have to outward seeming been possessed of nothing but their own poverty. In the same way, ineffable glory is set apart for the Holy Ones and those who are nearest to the Threshold of God, although such as these have never for a moment concerned themselves with material gain. Then comes the station of those just kings whose fame as protectors of the people and dispensers of Divine justice has filled the world, whose name as powerful champions of the people's rights has echoed through creation. These give no thought to amassing enormous fortunes for themselves; they believe, rather, that their own wealth lies in enriching their subjects. To them, if every individual citizen has affluence and ease, the royal coffers are full. They take no pride in gold and silver, but rather in their enlightenment and their determination to achieve the universal good. Next in rank are those eminent and honorable ministers of state and representatives, who place the will of God above their own, and whose administrative skill and wisdom in the conduct of their office raises the science +P21 of government to new heights of perfection. They shine in the learned world like lamps of knowledge; their thinking, their attitudes and their acts demonstrate their patriotism and their concern for the country's advancement. Content with a modest stipend, they consecrate their days and nights to the execution of important duties and the devising of methods to insure the progress of the people. Through the effectiveness of their wise counsel, the soundness of their judgment, they have ever caused their government to become an example to be followed by all the governments of the world. They have made their capital city a focal center of great world undertakings, they have won distinction, attaining a supreme degree of personal eminence, and reaching the loftiest heights of repute and character. =END= From: "Steven Kolins" To: email@example.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 21:32:56 EST Subject: women's intuition. cont. ------- Forwarded Message Follows ------- Date sent: Wed, 10 Jan 96 21:25:18 -0500 Subject: Returned mail: Host unknown From: MAILER-DAEMON@unity.ncsu.edu (Mail Received- cont. "Women's intuition is not just an old wives' tale. It's inner power, once women knew how to access it with continuity. This increases magnetic effectiveness, particularly in a male-dominated environment. Power doesn't just come from an increase in ego drive. It comes from developing the power of your whole system, especially the power of your heart... Heart intelligence supplies balanced ego strength and allows more of your individual spirit to come "on line" ... HEART POWER IS THE CONDUIT FOR REAL SPIRIT TO MANIFEST IN ANY AREA >>>The problem is that women can't come on line through taking a "mind stance." That's having a goal in mind of what changtes are needed and fighting your way to achieve that goal. That's just more of the same male-dominant approach. It's been tried and many women are weathered and worn and torn... AS WOMEN LEAD WITH THEIR HEARTS, THEY'LL HELP PAVE THE WAY FOR OTHERS.' http://webcom.com/hrtmath/IHM/Articles/WWP/WWP2.html ---Doc Lew Childre, 'women Lead with their hearts Thanks for being there dear Sister Bev Quanta Dawn-Light All I need is Freedom of spirit, Chastity of soul, and Purity of heart. A pov is not even secondary. All I need is Freedom of spirit, Chastity of soul, and Purity of heart. A pov is not even secondary. =END= From: "Mark A. Foster" Subject: maturity, embodiment To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 20:33:01 -0600 (CST) To: email@example.com Hi, Sen - Please excuse the delay in responding. I just returned from a three-day conference at Central Missouri State University. I agree with you that we all change our viewpoints. It is a part of spiritual maturity. And, like you, I have also noticed that the House of Justice has become more direct and, perhaps, relaxed or confident, in its messages over the past thirty-three years. My point was that, as I see it, the fact that the House is more operationally "mature," as indicated by the the creation and development of its various support agencies (such as, the Research Dept. and the International Teaching Centre), does not seem to me to imply that their decisions would necessarily be "better," in the sense of more infallible (which is, of course what we were talking about). The reason for my statement was that you had indicated that you did not think that the House's message on "Individual Rights and Freedoms" represented the best in the Teachings (if I understood you correctly). While I would expect to see the House produce messages contextualized to the stages in the *multilinear* (Julian Steward) or *specific* (Marshall Sahlins and Elman Service) evolution of the Faith and its institutions throughout the Baha'i world, I do not, personally, see the House becoming more infallible (or truthful without error) - which is what you appeared to be saying. From my POV, the House's and the Guardian's infallibility represents the power of the Covenant channeled into the dynamics of a particular situation or context. The variability of decisions is necessary, since it reflects the power of the House to adapt to changing and diverse situations. It also means that decisions are rendered based on the House's information. However, I would be hesitant to say that because information may, from a material standpoint, be "incomplete" that, somehow, the decision was lacked validity. We have no way of knowing whether a decision which may, using our own mental faculties, be deficient in factual accuracy could, if followed, be used nonetheless to the glory of Baha'u'llah's Kingdom. Therefore, I have difficulty with *purely* rational explanations of the House's decisions, i.e., truth versus error, as in the Edenic tree of the knowledge of good and evil. As I see it, the ripening of the Tree of Life, a characteristic of this Dispensation, has freed us from such dualistic thinking. Regarding the point both you and Rob Stockman have made about the body of Baha'u'llah being the general body of believers (as the church, or eklesia, was the body of believers in Christ), I would obviously agree with you. Without getting into too much additional speculation on my part, my feeling is that the House, as the Collective Center of the Baha'i World Community, represents that body in protypical form. But I would rather leave it at that, since I am really giving only an opinion and have no objective "proof." S>'Alethology' has me stumped: not in my dictionary at all. S>Would it be related to Greek alytheia? Yes. That is the root. Alethiology, not a particularly common word, is the branch of logic dealing with truth statements. Regarding the BUPC: I was the one who speculated that the nobody post might have been from them. I have seem Jensen's organization from time to time on the two online services where I work as a Baha'i, and the message seemed like one which the BUPC, with its unique brand of esotericism, would have written. However, it now appears that it was instead connected with Carre or the Ma'anis. Warm greetings, Mark * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *Mark A. Foster, Ph.D., Sociologist of Religion (Structuralist) * *Sociology, JCCC, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, KS 66210-1299 U.S.A. * *Past President (1995), Kansas Sociological Society * *Founding President., Two-Year College Sociological Society * *Academic Director (and Kansas Dir.), Foundation for the Science of Reality * *Board of Directors (and Talent), Tektite, Ltd. (Religion Films Production) * *Phones: 913/469-8500, ext.3376 (Office) and 913/768-4244 (Home) * *Fax: 913/469-4409 Science of Reality BBS: 913/768-1113 (8-N-1; 14.4 kbps) * *Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com (List Co-Moderator) * * 72642,3105 (Staff, Three CompuServe Religion Fora) UWMG94A (Prodigy)* * Realityman (America Online Ethics and Religion Forum Remote Staff) * *Home Pages: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/Science_of_Reality * * http://home.aol.com/Realityman (Note: The Web is Case-Sensitive)* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ___ * UniQWK #2141* The manifested Unity of God emanates in His creation's diversity =END= From: "Mark A. Foster" Subject: Future of God`s Faith To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 20:33:13 -0600 (CST) To: email@example.com Sadra wrote to Talisman@indiana.edu: S >It is possible that this message was forwarded by a representative of a S >group that is based -- or used to be -- right here in Albuquerque, New S >Mexico. There is a Persian gentleman who lives in Rio Rancho (a city S >adjacent to Albuquerque) who claims to be a Manifestation of God -- I S >can't remember either his name or the name of his group. Apparently he S >was one time invloved with the Ekcankar people and later had some kind of S >a profound mystical (or delusionary) experience at the Temple in Wilmette S >which induced him to make his claims to divinity. He says he is the next S >Manifestation after Baha'u'llah. S > S >Mark, I remember you and I were talking about this guy on the phone one S >time. Do you know anything more about him? Nima - I spoke with him on the phone several times. He was an Iranian engineering student, from a Twelver Shi'ih background, in the Ph.D. program at Mississippi State University (the place where I received my Ph.D. in sociology). According to his book ("scripture"), _THOTH_ (The Holiest of the Holies), he believed that Baha'u'llah was the eighth Avatar and that he, Maitreye (not to be confused with the Indian fellow, supposed living in London, whom Benjamin Creme writes and speaks about through his Tara Foundation), was the nineth. He also felt that Albuquerque would become the New Jerusalem (perhaps a twist on LDS doctrine). However, I doubt that the nobody posting was from him. Oh, BTW, I thought that your essay on Qabalism was brilliant. Blessings, Mark * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *Mark A. Foster, Ph.D., Sociologist of Religion (Structuralist) * *Sociology, JCCC, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, KS 66210-1299 U.S.A. * *Past President (1995), Kansas Sociological Society * *Founding President., Two-Year College Sociological Society * *Academic Director (and Kansas Dir.), Foundation for the Science of Reality * *Board of Directors (and Talent), Tektite, Ltd. (Religion Films Production) * *Phones: 913/469-8500, ext.3376 (Office) and 913/768-4244 (Home) * *Fax: 913/469-4409 Science of Reality BBS: 913/768-1113 (8-N-1; 14.4 kbps) * *Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com (List Co-Moderator) * * 72642,3105 (Staff, Three CompuServe Religion Fora) UWMG94A (Prodigy)* * Realityman (America Online Ethics and Religion Forum Remote Staff) * *Home Pages: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/Science_of_Reality * * http://home.aol.com/Realityman (Note: The Web is Case-Sensitive)* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ___ * UniQWK #2141* The manifested Unity of God emanates in His creation's diversity =END= [end of 1/10/96 session] Talisman emails received 1/11/96 ------------------------------------------------------ From: "Eric D. Pierce" To: firstname.lastname@example.org, Bahai-Discuss@bcca.org Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 19:05:52 PST8PDT Subject: Re: Decentralization Help - talisman email compilation Hi, I now have a compilation of the October 1995 talisman decentralization thread if anyone wants a copy of the file for their archives. Please specify if you want "plain text", PC wordperfect version#?, binhex, .zip, uudecode, lingerie remnants or whatever. Please note the file size is 194,988 Kilobytes, which for comparison will fill more than half an old style double density floppy diskette. Bahai-Discuss@BCCA.Org people that are not subscribers of talisman please send a request to the list so that the authors of the messages in the compilation can give me authorization to distribute them to you. EP technobabbler ps, BTW burl, is eastern washington architecture those funky geodesic domes with little springy head bobbing thingamagiggers like some long haul truckers have (but of buckminster fuller) in each leaky triangular window for earthquake prediction? Just wondering! ----------------------------------------- Volume in drive N is SYS Volume Serial Number is EED4-7CD9 Directory of N:\DOCUMENT\PERSONAL DECENTRZ TXT 194,988 01-09-96 6:44p 1 file(s) 194,988 bytes 16,277,504 bytes free ------- Forwarded Message Follows ------- Date sent: Tue, 9 Jan 1996 18:28:14 -0500 To: "Eric D. Pierce" From: email@example.com (Olinga Abbott) Subject: Re: Decentralization Help >Howdy! > >I have some archives of talisman email messages that >contained analysis of the decentralization proposals that >were put forward by the USA NSA. Please let me know if it >would be of use for me to compile them for you. The overall >tone was intelligent but not necessarily balanced, and >critical of the institutions and "administrative elites". > >I didn't hear the discussion about decentralization at my >local Distric Convention, I think a letter from the USA NSA >was read there. There also might be letters from the USA NSA >to LSAs about decentralization that I haven't seen or heard >since it has been difficult for me to attend feast on a >regular basis for the last few years. > >Best Wishes, > >EP > >> Date sent: Mon, 8 Jan 1996 00:01:37 -0800 >> To: "Eric D. Pierce" >> From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Marguerite K. Gipson) >> Subject: Decentralization Help > >> Hello Eric, I do not know if you are on Bahai Discuss.. But I thought I >> would pass this along to you.... Since you do have some views on this... >> >> Thanks, Margreet >> >> >> >To: "Baha'i Discuss" >> >Date: Sun, 7 Jan 1996 18:45:54 -0500 >> >X-Sender: email@example.com >> >From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Olinga Abbott) >> >Subject: Decentralization Help >> >Precedence: bulk >> > >> >I have been invited along with some other Baha'is to consult >> >with the US NSA the second weekend of January about >> >decentralization. Unfortunately I know very little about the >> >subject in a Baha'i context and would like to receive input. >> >Warm regards, >> >Olinga K. Abbott >> > >> >> > > Eric, I would like to receive your e-mail messages. Thanks. Olinga =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 22:15:35 -0500 (EST) From: Richard Vernon Hollinger To: Sadra Cc: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu, email@example.com Subject: Re: The `79 Revolution On Wed, 10 Jan 1996, Sadra wrote: > plagued by indecision). As a side note, Richard, a segment of the > military did in fact revolt against the new revolutionary situation: the > Imperial Guard Command corps and senior Air Force officers at the Dushan > Tappe military base planned and tried to carry out an aborted coup > d'etat. The revolt was put down immediately by the combined forces of the > Peoples Mujahideen Organization, Fadayeen-i Khalq, The Confederation of > Iranian Communist paramilitary units, Revolutionary Guards, an ad hoc > "Peoples" contingency force sent from Tehran and average run-of-the-mill > people who happened to be in the area at the time and armed by the former. > I am aware of this incident. However, in comparison with the extended internal warfare that characterized other revolutions, such incidents were of little significance, and did not decide the outcome of the struggle. The Iranian revolution, despite the thousands of deaths that occured as it unfolded, was not decided by armed struggle, though the internal power struggles that came in its aftermath were, in large measure. I would argue that 1978-79 revolution presented a new paradigm for revolutionary movements: massive, urban, unarmed demonstrations with virtually all social classes participating and other primarily non-violent means of defying the government such as strikes. The latter, curtailing the funds on which the Shah depended, were certainly a more direct threat than the small opposition groups who engaged in military actions. This model of revolution, btw, has subsequently been tried elsewhere, such as the Phillipines, and China. Oh well, I suppose Talisman is not the place to carry on this discussion, so I promise not to engage in a long discourse about conspiracies and revolutions... Richard =END= From: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 17:16:05 PST Subject: Re: Iran, the Eucharist, etc. To: email@example.com, Burl Barer On Wed, 10 Jan 96 13:14 PST Burl Barer wrote: This is a small town with limited >venues available. The LSA approached the Congregational Church about us >renting their fellowship facility. The pastor was cool about it, but the >congregation nixed the idea because they didn't want to appear to be >affiliated with Baha'is (yeah, guess that would be a pretty rude insult). >Hearing of our plight, the local Jewish community graciously offered us use >of their lovely community center as long as we kept the kids from going into >the Temple part and unraveling the Torahs. Then some of the local Baha'is >said "Oh No! People will think we are affiliated with Jews!" Oy! There is >obviously a pecking order in minority religions >and anti-semitism exists in the Baha'i community. > >Burl Burl, this story can't possibly end on this sour a note. This is the most amazing story. It is funny, in some sort of dark way. Needs is some weird racial slurs to complete it. On the other hand, another voice in my head wants to just say, very Jewishly, "VAHT ARE YOU PEOPLE CRAZY OR SOMETHING!" The voice with the Guru accent wants to say, " Oh yesz, another bootifool occazion vor zpriritual dewelopment." I'm still working on my Persian voice. > >******************************************************* > Order MAN OVERBOARD, the new book by Burl Barer today! >******************************************************* > > ------------------------------------- Name: Philip Belove E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: 01/10/96 Time: 17:16:05 This message was sent by Chameleon ------------------------------------- Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein =END= From: Hannah Elaina Reinstein To: "'talisman'" Subject: RE: dirty paper Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 19:58:21 -0800 Dear Ahang, High-end photo editing programs such as Corel Draw 5.0 or 6.0 and Adobe = Photoshop 3.0 have the ability to filter visual noise out of the = background of a bitmapped image. In Adobe, it's called a scratch filter. = If I were to scan an old photographic print or a soiled or folded piece = of paper I could use the scratch filter to cleanup the image. I have = most of the high-end programs that are used to edit scanned images on my = home PC workstation. A technical explanation of the process won't be = interesting to most of this audience but I'll be glad to give you more = information offline as well as tips on scanning. FYI, many chain quickie = print type outfits will scan items for you for a very modest price. Once = you have scanned the image, I can cleanup the file for you if you like. = We can discuss desired scan resolution and other details offline and = save bandwidth. Please feel free to contact me. Hannah ---------- From: email@example.com on behalf of Ahang Rabbani Sent: Tuesday, 09 January, 1996 12:30 PM To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: dirty paper [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] I have a piece of writing in the hand of Quddus (the only extant=20 sheet to my knowledge) and need to "clean" it for publication. =20 The paper used by Him is a bit dark and when its copied the=20 background looks dirty. Someone in my office suggested scanning=20 the text and then cleaning "dirty" background. Can any of the=20 technical folks on Talisman explain what I need to do? thanks for your help, ahang. =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 22:07:25 -0600 (CST) From: Saman Ahmadi To: talisman Subject: Re: Iranian conspiracies Dear John, You wrote: > Conspiracy theories are very much part of the Iranian mentality. The > Shah died believing that the Revolution was ordered by the US and the > USSR working together. He thought Mossadegh was a British agent. His > father, Reza Shah, thought the crown prince (i.e., the last Shah) was a > British agent. Various people think that Khomeini was a British agent. > And, of course, there are always the Freemasons, the Baha'is, Alexander > the Great and the Hellenists, the Crusaders, etc., who are linked in > various sinister ways to oppose the forces of light. > Sounds like a good start for Oilver Stone's next movie! regards, sAmAn =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 21:21:55 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: Richard Vernon Hollinger Cc: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu, email@example.com Subject: Re: The `79 Revolution > I am aware of this incident. However, in comparison with > the extended internal warfare that characterized other revolutions, such > incidents were of little significance, and did not decide the outcome of > the struggle. Richard, I'm surprised you say this. I remember quite vividly the bloody skirmishes that occured in Tehran between the army, police units, demonstrators & MKO/FKO guerilla units (granted, I was only 7 years old at the time). One cannot conclude that these were of little significance and did not decide the outcome of the struggle. Some of the events leading up the actual overthrow of the regime were quite bloody indeed. The massacre at Jaleh Square in September 1978 only happened to be the one major event headlined by foreign correspondents. I submit to you that there was three major phases to the Iranian Revolution: 1) _the active fight against and final overthrow of the Pahlavi regime_ (this period extends to roughly 10 years when radical elements within the 2nd National Front, elements of the decapitated Tudeh & Mehdi Bazargan's Freedom Movement [Nehzat-i Azadi] -- itself a faction of the second NF -- split and found organizations such as the Mujahedeen-i Khalq, Peoples Fedayeen and the Confederation of Iranian Communists. These groups conduct a ten year long guerilla war of attrition against the regime. Note: the clergy and a little known Ayatollah by the name of Khomeini (although the imam is calling for the regimes overthrow ever since 1963) do not enter the picture until well into the 1977-78 period of this phase); 2) _the subsequent internal power struggle_ (this period begins with the 1979 April referendum, the suppression of a peaceful protest march by women against veiling in late spring, the closing of the Azadegan newspaper by Hizbollah thugs in the summer and the national fiasco and outcry over details of the IRI constitution. The MKO are the first group that put themselves in opposition to Khomeini's vision of a theocratic Iran, a massive demonstration of 50,000 people is viciously put down in the summer of 1980, and slowly but surely a bloody civil war ensues between the forces of the Mujahedeen and the Islamic Republican Party -- the major phase of this extends up to mid-1983. Next, the Fedayeen, who had initially supported Khomeini, goes underground in 82, their revolt in Gilan is quickly suppressed, the party splits and the leaders go into exile. The Tudeh and other lesser left-wing & liberal nationalist groups are one and all proscribed by the regime, it's leaders are all imprisoned, and the political landscape becomes increasingly dominated by the Khomeinist clergy); 3) _Consolidation of the IRI dictatorship_ (1983 to present; the 8 year war with Iraq gives the IRI the perfect opportunity to capitalize). The final phase is collapse, which is the phase we're currently in right now. Also, if extended internal warfare is a criteria for a revolution then the Russian Revolution of 1917 (the March revolution, that is, and not the Bolshevik coup d'etat in October) cannot be called a real revolution. Neither could the French, for that matter. The only revolution that was marked by a protracted internal conflict in the pre-modern period was Oliver Cromwell's war and victory against King Charles. Regards, Nima =END= From: Member1700@aol.com Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 23:46:06 -0500 To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: Twin Holy Birthdays Ahang-Jan: We are grateful for your futher information regarding the Baha'i calendar. Regarding the Martyrdom of the Bab, it is indeed celebrated on a lunar basis by the Baha'is of Iran, and it is fixed at a certain number of days (I forget how many. Is it three?) before the beginning of Ramadan, the Muslim month of fasting. This corresponds to the day of the Bab's martyrdom in 1850, with regard to Ramadan. Warmly, Tony =END= Date: 10 Jan 96 21:56:55 U From: "Dan Orey" Subject: FYI - conference / longish To: firstname.lastname@example.org Cc: mloring@NMSU.Edu, JGalata@aol.com, email@example.com, Muhtadia@aol.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, Kkonline@aol.com GatorMail-Q FYI - conference / longish To My Talsiamn Brothers, Sisters, Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins - Thought you might be interested, I have been invited as a gay Baha'i to participate, see paragraph 4. We are not alone! - Daniel -------------------------------------- Here's a precis of the conference as it's being described now: "The Belfry, the Lutheran/Episcopal campus ministry for UC-Davis and the Sacramento campuses, recently was notified that it is one of two finalists being considered to host a national conference for up to five hundred participants that will be funded by the Philip N. Knutson Endowment, on The Church and Human Sexuality. If the conference is awarded to The Belfry (the decision will be made on February 1st), the conference will be held on the campus of the University of California, Davis Thursday evening, September 5 through Saturday morning, September 7, 1996. "The Knutson Foundation's original call for funding requests stipulates that 'the first conference will address human sexuality and the Church from a broad-based perspective to encourage dialogue and promote respect, dignity and courageous awareness among Christians.' The planning committee that is working with The Belfry on this project have expanded the concept to include interfaith representation as well as a broad spectrum of Christian denominations. "The suggested conference title is 'S E X : CAN WE TALK? A Colloquium on Human Sexuality and American Religious Institutions.' This points to the critical issue: how to promote lively, open, healthy dialogue on human sexuality, first within and then beyond the religous community. The conference itself will be organized in such a way that this kind of communication will be both modeled and practiced. "In nearly every religous community there are sexuality issues that divide the community and impede its efforts to minister to the world around it. Thus, one indicator of the success of this conference will be that it assists some religious communities to deal more openly and sensitively with these divisive issues as a first step toward community wholeness and health." BTW, Mel White, former speechwriter for Falwell, Ollie North, etc. is asking to be a part of the conference. Want to consider a piggy-back appearance at CSUS on Monday, September 9th? Seems like something that the department might like to sponsor, along with the GLB grRobertson. Then, on Gay Pride Sunday, June 27, 1993, Mel White was installed Dean of the Cathedral of Hope Metropolitan Community Church in Dallas, Texas, with 14,000 congregants, the nation's largest gay-lesbian congregation. After almost 3 decades of counseling and "anti-gay" therapy including prayer, fasting, exorcism, and electric shock, Mel White was able to reconcile his Christians, to confront the misleading anti-gay rhetoric of the religious right, and to launch his own fight for justice and understanding for gay and lesbian Americans. On January 1, 1995, Dr. White was appointed national Minister of Justice for the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches, the only Christian denomination with a primary outreach to gays and lesbians. The Reverend Elder Troy Perry, founder of the U.F.M.C.C., and its Board of Elders, asked Dr. White to represent the denomination's 300 churches as a full-time volunteer in the current nationwide struggle on behalf of justice for all who suffer, gay and non-gay alike. With his experience in theology and media, Dr. White is uniquely qualified for his new position. While completing his B.A. degree at Warner Pacific College (1962) and his M.A. degree in communications at the University of Portland (1963), Mel produced and hosted a weekly NBC television series, "The World of Youth" (1959-1964). While working on his Ph.D. in communications and film at U.S.C.(1965), Mel won a Rockefeller grant to begin a doctorate in religious studies as well. Mel completed his doctorate at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, where he also served for more than a decade as a professor of communications and preaching. In 1973, Mel was appointed Senior pastor of Pasadena's First Covenant Church. In 1965 Mel founded Mel White Productions, Inc. and in the next 20 years produced 53 prize-winning motion picture and TV documentaries. Since 1972, Dr. White has also written 16 books, 9 of them best-sellers including David, the story of David Rothenberg, the child burned by his father (a 1988 NBC movie of the week with Bernadette Peters) and A Gift of Hope: The Tony Melendez Story, a July, 1989, HarperCollins release, condensed in the June, 1989, issue of Reader's Digest. After post-graduate studies in communication at U.S.C., U.C.L.A., and Harvard, Dr. White wrote a syndicated column using motion picture and television reviews to explore the spiritual side of modern media (Eternity and Faith at Work magazines). He has served as consultant to major film studios including Warner Bros. ("The Mission") and Universal Studios ("Cry Freedom"). From the beginning of his career in media, Mel has searched for stories that would inspire and inform the struggle to be human. He directed documentary film crews in Vietnam during the last years of the war, documenting the spiritual dimensions of that conflict on its victims. Mel has produced and directed television specials in Africa, Asia, South and Central America His book, Margaret of Molokai, is the story of the last leper to leave the Kalaupapa peninsula and a fascinating analogy for the current AIDS crisis. Mel's Aquino (Word Books, 1989) is the biography of Ninoy and Cory Aquino, the martyr and the president, and the amazing spiritual story of the People's Revolution in the Philippines. During their first 30 months as gay, Christian activists, Dr. White and his partner, Gary Nixon, have traveled to 36 states, speaking, organizing, lobbying, confronting extremists, meeting the press and protesting injustice. After spending almost three years in the front lines of this war being waged against homosexuality and homosexuals by the radical right and after a year-long study of his nonviolent resistance heroes - especially Gandhi and King - Dr. White is writing Storming The Gate, A Gay Christian Discovers Soul Force, Mel's sequel to Stranger at the Gate. "Across this country," Mel explains, "our gay brothers and lesbian sisters are the victims of a tidal wave of intolerance, discrimination, and violent crime flowing directly out of the anti-gay rhetoric and politic actions of the radical right. We Christians, gay and straight alike, must take our stand to help end that suffering. The "soul force" principles of Gandhi and King will guide us on that journey to justice." After Dr. White's 22 day fast in the Virginia Beach City Jail, Pat Robertson visited him in jail, heard White's plea and went on the air to say clearly that he "abhorred the growing violence against gay and lesbian people." "Pat Robertson is not our enemy,' White said later. "He is just another victim of misinformation like we all have been. In the spirit of Jesus, Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. we must go on believing that Pat and the others can change." Dr. White has dedicated his life to that ministry of change. "Until this nation accepts God's gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered children as full members of the human family," White explains, "we must go on telling that truth in love, whatever it might cost us." =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 00:08:24 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: Talisman Subject: RE: Twin Holy Birthdays On Wed, 10 Jan 1996, Ahang Rabbani wrote: > I have a recollection that there is a restriction from the > Guardian on celebrating the Twin Holy Birthdays on lunar basis, > pending legislation from the House on the whole question of > Baha'i calendar. The reference to this is in one of the Guardian's letters in Volume One of "The Light of Divine Guidance," the Guardian's letters to Germany and Austria. Both volumes are available by FTP from the computer in Haifa set up by the House for this purpose. If anybody is interested I will post detailed instructions for obtaining these books, so you can download them and have them on diskette. Brent =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 1996 23:01:28 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Doug Myers) Subject: Manifestation and Prophets of God Dear Talismanians, On Jan. 10 Robert wrote: >These matters [3 Manifestations -dm] are sometimes a bit confusing. I can think of >one place where >Baha'u'llah identifies with the Imam (Husayn?) who died and was decapitated >on the plain of Karbila. Perhaps Quddus' relationship was similar. Mark >Foster, no doubt, has a good explanation this, but, IMV, the unity must be >levels other than that/those of "Manifestationship". Remember that >Baha'u'llah was also a "human being". Differentation between >Manifestations and other beings centres on things like the fact that >Manifestations of God, uniquely, bring a new "Book" and inaugurate new >universal religions. The Imams and Quaddus did neither. > >Robert. I don't know if this is the quote Robert is thinking about, but I have been deeply moved since I first read and studied it. "Praise be to Thee, O Lord My God, for the wondrous revelations of Thy inscrutable decree and the manifold woes and trials Thou hast destined for Myself. At one time Thou didst deliver Me into the hands of Nimrod; at another Thou hast allowed Pharaoh's rod to persecute Me. Thou, alone, canst estimate, through Thine all-encompassing knowledge and the operation of Thy Will, the incalculable afflictions I have suffered at their hands. Again Thou didst cast Me into the prison-cell of the ungodly, for no reason except that I was moved to whisper into the ears of the well-favored denizens of Thy Kingdom an intimation of the vision with which Thou hadst, through Thy knowledge, inspired Me, and revealed to Me its meaning through the potency of Thy might. And again Thou didst decree that I be beheaded by the sword of the infidel. Again I was crucified for having unveiled to men's eyes the hidden gems of Thy glorious unity, for having revealed to them the wondrous signs of Thy sovereign and everlasting power. How bitter the humiliations heaped upon Me, in a subsequent age, on the plain of Karbila! How lonely did I feel amidst Thy people! To what a state of helplessness I was reduced in that land! Unsatisfied with such indignities, My persecutors decapitated Me, and, carrying aloft My head from land to land paraded it before the gaze of the unbelieving multitude, and deposited it on the seats of the perverse and faithless. In a later age, I was suspended, and My breast was made a target to the darts of the malicious cruelty of My foes. My limbs were riddled with bullets, and My body was torn asunder. Finally, behold how, in this Day, My treacherous enemies have leagued themselves against Me, and are continually plotting to instill the venom of hate and malice into the souls of Thy servants. With all their might they are scheming to accomplish their purpose.... Grievous as is My plight, O God, My Well-Beloved, I render thanks unto Thee, and My Spirit is grateful for whatsoever hath befallen me in the path of Thy good-pleasure. I am well pleased with that which Thou didst ordain for Me, and welcome, however calamitous, the pains and sorrows I am made to suffer." (Baha'u'llah, "Gleanings", pp. 88-90) This prayer was also published in "Baha'i World Faith", pp. 31-32, and is of such importance that Shoghi Effendi quotes it in The Dispensation of Baha'u'llah in "The World Order of Baha'u'llah", pp. 118-119, a letter that, IMHO, is His consumate summation of the Faith. The Dispensation letter is the what I give to those who have a basic understanding of the Faith and now want find out what It is all about. In my understanding, Baha'u'llah is identifying Himself with many Holy Souls who have preceded Him in suffering and service to God. Included are Abraham, Moses, Joseph, John the Baptist, Christ, Imam Husayne, the Bab, and of course Baha'u'llah mentions Himself. The inclusion of Manifestations with what are Holy Souls, but not Manifestations confused my until I read: "The Prophets 'regarded as One and the same person' include the Lesser Prophets as well, and not merely Those Who bring a 'Book'. The station is different, but they are Prophets and Their nature thus different from that of ours." (From a letter written on behalf of Shogh Effendi to an individual believer, Feb. 8, 1949, "Lights of Guidance", 2nd ed., p. 498, # 1673) In reading the discussion on the three Manifestations I am convinced that Quddus is certianly to be included in this Honorable Company. Doug Myers email@example.com "Nothing survives but the way we live our lives." JB =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 00:14:10 -0700 To: Sadra From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Gordon McFarlane) Subject: Re: The Qabbalah in a nutshell! Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu Dear Sadra: I enjoyed reading your brief essay on the Qabbalah. I don't know if you've read my "freefall" post where I asked: "Can any one here tell me if there is a connection between the Hebrew letter "Vau" and the "I", or if the statement that "the manifestation of the He final on earth would be in espousal with Vau, but there is a separation in the present order until that which now hinders shall be taken out of the way", relates in any way to Baha'u'llahs revelation of "the word which shall put the kings and rulers of the earth to flight" as "The He has now been made manifest in the I" (and the other quote by William Postel) In your study of the traditions of the Qabbalah have you looked at any of the correlations between those traditions and the writings of the Bab and Baha'u'llah - particularly relating to the exile of the Shekinah and her restoration in the Covenant of Baha'u'llah. ie. the Hidden word "The Mystic and wondrous Bride, hidden ere this beneath the veiling of utterance hath now . . . been made manifest . . . the favour is complete etc. This is something that I was very interested in during my immediate pre-Baha'i days when I was experiencing extreme spiritual agitation and reading a lot of Baha'i writings at the same time that I was struggling through Aurthur Waite's "Holy Kabbalah, Gershom Scholem's commentaries on the Zohar and Sepher Yetzira etc. (I have not read anything by Leo Schaya, could you please give me a title and publisher.) Waite, as you may know, is a rather pretentious sort, but as Kenneth Rexroth puts it, "At last the absurd rituals he uses to say the simplest things come to endear him to you, like the wen on grandmas's nose." At any rate,after I enrolled in the Faith, I was discouraged from pursuing this sort of stuff and couldn't find anyone to talk to that was interested (except for a fellow of Jewish background who was here briefly one summer working with the Four Worlds Development Project). It seemed peculiar to me because when I was a non-Baha'i attending firesides regularly and asking all sorts of bizarre, peculiar and often rude questions, the Baha'is seemed to be very interested in my line of inquiry. It seemed as though once I had signed that card I was being told - "now that you're one of us, stop asking stupid questions and get to work!" I still pursue it in isolation because, as you would have gathered from my previous posts, I am fascinated and inspired by the metaphors of the Kabbalah, which I find, in many cases to be not only consistent with, but also, help me unfold many of the Baha'i metaphors. I would like to hear more from you as it seems you have gone into this in a little more depth than I. Thank you. LBG's, Gord. ". . . The Word has indeed become Man, but not till the word has become Woman will the world be saved. . . . then will reason be reconciled with Faith, and understand, explain and govern the sacred excesses of devotion". William Postel --- Gordon McFarlane e-mail: MCFARLANE@upanet.uleth.ca 919 11th Sreet South Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada T1J2P7 (403)327-2987 =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 00:27:15 -0800 From: email@example.com (S Lieberman ) Subject: The Guardian re: Hitler To: Talisman@indiana.edu Dear Brent, Linda and anyone else interested in the subject. I have often also pondered about the letter of 11 February 1934 published in Lights of Divine Guidance, not only concerning Shoghi Effendi's attitude towards the rise of Hitler, but also because it contains some very interesting comments which indicate that there can be circumstances when it is the moral obligation of a Baha'i to disobey a government. In connection with his attitude towards Hitler, it is interesting to note that in 1933, Hitler made a number of his more famous "Peace Speeches" (Friedensrede) in which he declared that Germany had no ambitions towards other European nations, and that they were prepared to completely disband their military and weapons in a non-agression pact. Many of the leading British newspapers (including The Times of London) and the BBC felt that Hitler should be taken at his word. It is possible that based on the information available to him, Shoghi Effendi could have been influenced by the optimistic assessments of Hitler (he subscribed to The Times from the time of his days in Oxford until the end of his life (Priceless Pearl, p.24)). However, based on all of the Guardian's other warnings, it is clear that he had repeatedly been preparing the Baha'is for a global conflict, and he undoubtedly knew that Germany would be a major contributor. "Oh banks of the Rhine..." The October 14th speech from Hitler, which was sent to the Guardian by Dr. Muhlschlegel, announced that Germany was withdrawing from the League of Nations and the Disarmament Conference, (he implied that Germany was going to rearm) and warned that German troops were prepared to fight if the League of Nations imposed sanctions. It is hard to believe that Shoghi Effendi didn't have a good idea that the not-too-distant future would be a disaster for Germany. I also agree with Brent that he was instructing the Baha'i community how to react under what were potentially extremely grave circumstances. What has always been most interesting to me about this letter is the following statement: "...For whereas the friends should obey the government under which they live, even at the risk of sacrificing all their administrative affairs and interests, [***they should under no circumstances suffer their inner religious beliefs and convictions to be violated and transgressed by any authority whatever.***] (emphasis added). A distinction of a fundamental importance must, therefore, be made between spiritual and administrative matters. Whereas the former are sacred and inviolable, and hence cannot be subject to compromise, the latter are secondary..." from Steve... "come fly the airline that's uniting the world....come fly our friendly skies..." =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 01:27:39 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: The Qabbalah in a nutshell! Dear Gordon-- I shall reply to your post soon, but for now here's the title and publisher of Leo Schaya's short book on the Kabbalah you requested: _The Universal Meaning of the Kabbalah_ (translation of "Homme et L'absolu la Kabbale"), Allen & Unwin (London: 1971). I'm not sure if the book is still in print or not, but in case it isn't, I know of a niffty book distributer of traditionalist esoteric titles out in Ghent, New York who I'm pretty sure has it: _Sophia Perennis et Universalis_ Rd. 2, Box 223 Ghent, NY 12075 Tel: (518) 672-4323 Fax: (518) 672-5242 You also might want to check out some of their other titles. For instance, I recently got my self a great tome of quotes, thematically spliced, from mystical, religious authors & scriptures of all the sacred traditions (Vedanta, Kabbalah, Sufism, Christain esoterism, Native American and other indigenous religions, Taoism, the Bible, Upanishads, etc.): _A Treasury of Traditional Wisdom_ (ed.) Whitall N. Perry, Quinta Essentia (Cambridge: 1991). Ask for James Wetmore (he's the director) and tell him I recommended Sophia Perennis to you. Best regards, Nima Hazini =END= From: SFotos@eworld.com Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 02:29:27 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: humility & forgiveness-neurolinguistically On Jan 9, Philip wrote; >>... brain architecture also seems to suggest this multi-level analysis of emotions with the raw emotions being the more immediate responses and the refining ones being the more "spiritual" more modulating ones. Forgiveness, then, in my analysis, would be a manifestaion of the neo-cortical activity. >>So I leave here is with this question: If forgiveness can be understood as a meta response to emotions, and if basic emotional responses are refined by high level, self reflective, mediating brain functions, then how would we fit into this model a spiritual quality like detachment? -------------------- Philip asks: Where, neurobiologically speaking, are our spiritual virtues and qualities? A few years ago, sociobiologists investigated an evidently genetically determined behavior pattern they called the "altruism gene." This referred to acts of self-sacrifice in various species-- including humans. Such behavior was interpreted as evolutionarily favored because it conferred survival advantages on members of the population in which it appeared (although not necessarily on the carrier!). For example, we can read in the papers about bystanders who, instantly and without thinking, leap into rivers and attempt to pull out drowning people, losing their own lives in the process. This argument suggests to me that virtues and spiritual qualities are encoded in genetic material--within the cortex--and I'd like to elaborate on this from a neurolinguistic perspective since I see language to be a key to spiritualization for most people. There are two presently competing view of brain organization regarding language learning: (1) The cognitive argument that languages are learned distributively--there are no dedicated brain mechanisms for different linguistic domains. We learn languages like we learn any other skill, through practice. (2) The generative argument--coming from the great linguist Noam Chomsky's Universal Grammar concept--that we are hardwired to learn languages, possess an innate form of linguistic knowledge which is activated by the environment and that specific linguistic modules exist in the human brain--a "language organ", if you like. Empirical evidence seems to support the second argument up through puberty. And, through studies of brain-damaged individuals, the left brain hemisphere has been determined to be the site of linguistic specialization (In case there are any linguists around, I'd better add that the modular nature of recent linguistic theory suggests that linguistic knowledge is distributed in various locations, with redundancy, and that associative learning mechanisms can account for much language learning, so the situation is not as uncontroversial as I've just outlined) This point has been raised previously on Talisman and several list members have posted on brain bilateralism--that linear processes such as language, logic and mathematics are located in the left lobe and holistic, intuitive processes in the right. It may well be that "spiritual modules" exist, distributed through the right lobe. These would be specialized brain mechanisms comprised of innate spiritual qualities and virtues (such as Philip's detachment)--ready to be activated through personal effort and environmental influences. If this is so, then imagine the consequences of going against our genetic programming. We are designed to be spiritual beings; when we are not then we suffer greatly. Imagine someone who couldn't understand or speak a language--how much would be missing from that person's existence. In the same way, if we don't develop our innate spiritual nature, we will be as miserable as a flightless bird--something which is not doing the main thing it was designed to do. Maybe this is why that particular metaphor was used by 'Abdu-l-Baha to describe flawed human conditions. Best, Sandy Fotos =END= From: JMSwtlk@aol.com Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 06:03:22 -0500 To: email@example.com Subject: unsubscribe Talisman please unsubscribe Talisman =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 96 16:59:37+030 Message-Id: <9601111359.AB28877@imul.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Don Peden) Subject: forgiveness >The explanation makes some sense now. Yes, I agree that often one party >needs to be more forgiving than the other due to different levels of >understanding or information. All true. Good. But the discovery that was new and important to me was that forgiveness itself was a higher level reality than simple responsiveness. And I began to think that all these spiritual qualities are part of this same higher level. The language dissolves in my hands when I try to talk about it, but I think there is a great difference between say, having feelings about something, and then, on the higher level, having feelings about the feelings we are having. It is at this meta level where forgiveness happens, and I suspect it is also where humility happens. I don't know yet about compassion. Detachment is another matter entirely. Dear Philip: This raises yet another question...if an individual (or institution) is able to "stand outside" one set of emotions or reactions and respond with another set of decisions about how to inform and direct the reactions, is this the "shock absorber" part? And at what stage do both become integrated again, as they must if you are truely to have unity of the decision. For example, say a spouse is confronted with the situation of infidelity on the part of their partner. On one level, you have a set of reactions...hurt, anger, etc. On the next level, this detached part of the individual looks at the situation, and tells the person..."forgive, learn from the experience, and get back to the every day living of job/family/etc". Now, is this response coming from their higher self, noble as it might be, or is it a panic reaction trying to stuff jack back in his box and make things like they use to be...and of course they never can be because there has been a tremendous breach of faith, hurt, and betrayal, and both people have changed drastically because of the experience. What happens when the person hastily allows their higher self to dictate a response, masks any true reaction, and burys it under the guise of forgiveness? Do you think it will just go away, or transform itself into some martyr status, or what? Or is it going to fester and raise it's ugly head some time in the future as stress and unfinished business. Is this really the meaning of that spiritual self, or are we taking a spiritual reality and trying to make it fit into our North American style of dealing with emotions (which is usually to deny them expression, or to control our environment so that our expression will look appropriate)? What I am getting at with this senerio is the idea that although their can be a "second" self, or "higher level" of response, it is critical that honesty is its guide, or you can end up talking yourself into hasty responses which might be inappropriate in the circumstances, and actually prevent growth by masking important issues which need to be dealt with. I have chosen this senerio because it would present a dilemma for the individual...it is not a situation which you have no control over, such as a death of someone close to you, and you just have to work through. It is a situation which is highly emotionally charged, and you have many choices you can make...your choice will be based on spiritual awareness. In the same way, we get very emotional about our faith, our relationships between ourselves and others in our faith, and the relationships between ourselves and the institutions which represent our faith. This is not a "take it or leave it" kind of set-up. You are dealing with slices from the heart...felt betrayal, feelings of abandonment, etc. To rise "above" these emotions and "cushion" the response and put into action something which will bring it back to normal quickly may not be to the benefit of the individual or community, even if it makes people in the community feel better that the status quo is "intact" and "restored". For me, this is where the confusion enters with the analogy of the car. People and communities, unlike cars, perhaps, can benefit from bouncing along out of control for a stretch to see if there are new parameters we can reach, and new levels for what is "acceptable". Too much "control" can also provide a mask for something which needs to be examined, dealt with and transcended. On the other hand, the higher self could pull the responsive self along to a different level of understanding and reaction, if this process of honesty is honoured. So, is the spiritual act in the forgiveness, or is it in the process of honestly searching through the motives informing the act of forgiveness, or are they part of the same process? Would humility result from the recognition achieved through this honest examination of motives that we are sometimes motivated by reactions less that spiritual, even though they have a "spiritual" mask? And what about the role of boundaries? Do individuals have a right to set a "boundary" for their own spiritual protection? If an institution stomps all over a person's spirituality, does the individual have the right to declare boundaries to an institution? They can with an individual, but can they with an institution? And if they do set such a boundary, at what point does that become "disobedience"? Does the institution have the right to set boundaries for itself? Should those boundaries be respected, or are they not allowed to have boundaries because of our ideas of public office inherited from our political system? Is it appropriate to attach present political values to a "spiritual institution", or are we simply regarding our institutions as political identities? If we view them in a political light, where does spirituality come in? And yes, the infallibility being present in the act of learning through decisions making, and even the right to make mistakes and learn from them, has a certain validity in my mind. I'm sure there are many opinions on this. However, I don't see how we can avoid it. We have the writings, but we will bump our noses many times before we work out how to apply them, and then it will change anyway...it is all relative. Even the Universal House of Justice sometimes decides to defer a decision, because either they do not have enough information, it is not timely, or it is not clear to them how the writings are meant to be applied. And if they legislate something for today, it may be changed in future due to changing circumstances. This indicates a process to me rather than a fixed linear truth. This is one thing I feel sure of. (And because it is the one thing I feel sure of, the Great Cosmic Mushroom will probably decide this is the one thing which will be swept from under my feet...just to keep me moving and not allow me to get too attached to any one place in my head.) Love, Bev. =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 10:00:29 -0500 (EST) From: Richard Vernon Hollinger To: Sadra Cc: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu, firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: The `79 Revolution On Wed, 10 Jan 1996, Sadra wrote: > > Richard, I'm surprised you say this. I remember quite vividly the bloody > skirmishes that occured in Tehran between the army, police > units, demonstrators & MKO/FKO guerilla units (granted, I was only 7 > years old at the time). One cannot conclude that these were of little > significance and did not decide the outcome of the struggle. Some of the > events leading up the actual overthrow of the regime were quite bloody > indeed. Well, I guess this is why history is often regarded as an art rather than a science. Ultimately one must make such assessments by asking conter-factual questions that cannot be answered. In this instance, what would have been the result if such skirmishes had not taken place? In my view, the revolution would still have occured, this for several reasons: 1) the regime had lost any pretense of legitimacy and could rule only by force 2) the revolutionary movement was so popular that the army could not be effectively used to repress it--there were instances of soldiers being brought into to suppress a demonstration, who defected and joined the opposition; the elite units loyal to the Shah could not, by themselves, keep the Shah in power; 3) the government could not control the flow of information, and hence could not curtail the movement through censorship--the BBC, as is well-known to conspriacy theorists, announced in advance the times and places of demonstrations; the new media technologies could not be centrally controlled, so literature and audio tapes could be repoduced and distributed; 4) the strikes and massive demonstrations showed that Shah had lost the ability to govern. So, where do armed skirmishes fit in this scheme of things? I would say that they represent a rather small part of the revolutionary movement. They may have been critical to the success of the revolution--who can say, for sure?--but in my judgment they were not. The only revolution that was > marked by a protracted internal conflict in the pre-modern period was > Oliver Cromwell's war and victory against King Charles. I, of course, had in mind examples such as Vietnam, Algeria, China, and Nicaragua, all from the modern period. Richard > > Regards, > Nima > > > =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 96 16:59:23+030 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Don Peden) Subject: RE: forgiveness >Return-Path: >X-UIDL: 821333806.001 >Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 14:02:50 PST >From: email@example.com >Subject: RE: forgiveness >To: firstname.lastname@example.org, Don Peden , email@example.com > >Dear Bev, >I am thoroughly enjoying this exchange but I wonder, Shouldn't this >be shared with Talisman? If you wish, (and it's okay with me), you >may post this reply along with your original message. >Thanks, > > > >On Wed, 10 Jan 96 21:21:45+030 Bev Peden wrote: >>Dear Philip: >> >>The explanation makes some sense now. Yes, I agree that often one >party >>needs to be more forgiving than the other due to different levels of >>understanding or information. > > >All true. Good. But the discovery that was new and important to me >was that forgiveness itself was a higher level reality than simple >responsiveness. And I began to think that all these spiritual >qualities are part of this same higher level. The language dissolves >in my hands when I try to talk about it, but I think there is a great >difference between say, having feelings about something, and then, on >the higher level, having feelings about the feelings we are having. > >It is at this meta level where forgiveness happens, and I suspect it >is also where humility happens. I don't know yet about compassion. > >Detachment is another matter entirely. >> >>The question of infallibility is a can of worms, isn't it? > >Yes. yes. > > > Is it the system >>which is infallable, or the institution? > >This is a whole topic, and one loaded with paradox. Systems are >generally assumed to be something like "infallible" when seen as a >whole. That is why family therapists say that individual family >members may be behaving perversely, but when their behavior is seen >from the point of view of the needs of the whole system, their odd >behavior makes perfect sense. This kind of thinking goes beyond cans >of worms to, perhaps, barrels of monkeys or pits of snakes, >depending... > >> Does an institution get to grow >>through its own process of decision making, > >Does an "infallible" system get to grow through its own process of >decision making. Doesn't growing involve trying things out and making >mistakes? What does this tell us about infallibility? > > > > >> or does that get lost when they >>are engaged on the front of learning through decision making while >fighting >>a rear guard of non-support and non-cooperation? Would support and >>co-operation help an institution work through the consequences of >decisions >>faster and help raise the level of collective wisdom in a community? > Or >>does co-operation and support just end up helping the status quo >exist >>longer than it should? When to support and when to object...when to >submit >>to the will of the group decision, and when to stick to your guns as >an >>individual...all part of the dialogue and learning process of >community. No >>fixed answers, just a lot of new questions. > > >wonderful questions. > > >> >>On a lighter note, is this the petrol that makes the car go? And >who is in >>the drivers seat? >> > >Right! > > > >> >>Love, >> >>Bev >> > >Thanks. >------------------------------------- >Name: Philip Belove >E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org >Date: 01/10/96 >Time: 14:02:51 > >This message was sent by Chameleon >------------------------------------- >Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. >Einstein > > > =END= From: Alethinos@aol.com Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 11:05:02 -0500 To: email@example.com Subject: Re: Between democracy and fascism Before we start saying that the Central Figures supported *liberal-democratic* concpets we had better re-read two things. The first is John Dunn's WESTERN POLITICAL THEORY IN THE FACE OF THE FUTURE, an excelent look at what the West really has of such *values* and what it does not. It is an excellent lil' book. Secondly we should re-read INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS. jim harrison Alethinos@aol.com =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 11:13:49 -0500 (EST) From: Chris Filstrup Subject: Re: Gleanings II To: Ahang Rabbani Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org c. I recommend that in addition to full-text translations the House also authorize publication of the originals in the same or companion volume. This would help Baha'i scholars, especially the second tier who know some Arabic and Persian but lack good personal libraries. It would also encourage Baha'is to study Arabic and Persian. And of course publication of the original texts would benefit Persian Baha'is. Presently, access to original texts is way too limited. The Faith is 150 years old, and the community is plenty ready for a published canon. Chris Filstrup AUL/Collections Services 202/994-1370 Gelman Library fax: 202/994-1340 George Washington University email@example.com Washington, DC 20052 =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 10:25:58 -0600 (CST) Subject: Re: FYI - conference / longish From: "Richard C. Logan" To: "Dan Orey" , "The suggested conference title is 'S E X : CAN WE TALK? A Colloquium on Human Sexuality and American Religious Institutions.'... Will Joan Rivers Be there? Sorry I couldn't help myself. Richard Richard C. Logan firstname.lastname@example.org Maintain HomePape "The Baha'is of Lubbock" http://rampages.onramp.net/~nineteen/ +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ How manifold are the truths which must remain unuttered until the appointed time is come! Even as it has been said: "Not everything that a man knoweth can be disclosed, nor can everything that he can disclose be regarded as timely, nor can every timely utterance be considered as suited to the capacity of those who hear it." --Gleanings from the writings of Baha'u'llah +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ =END= From: email@example.com Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 09:24:01 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com Subject: Re: Humility and Forgiveness Dear Phillip, An interesting article. Personally I see things differently. Judgement is reserved to God. If I cannot judge, then I have nothing to forgive. I can only accept. Admittedly this is a goal but I find that I am moving closer to it. Doubt if this will help you with your paper but I wanted to share it with you. In peace and with Baha'i love, Alma To tread the path of Love Alma Engels Is no mere game. firstname.lastname@example.org For only one Out of many thousands Can persevere in His Love. (Tahirih) =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 10:28:24 -0600 (CST) Subject: RE: Twin Holy Birthdays From: "Richard C. Logan" To: "[G. Brent Poirier]" , "Talisman" > If anybody is interested I will post >detailed instructions for obtaining these books, so you can download them >and have them on diskette. Yes! please do so. Richard Richard C. Logan email@example.com Maintain HomePape "The Baha'is of Lubbock" http://rampages.onramp.net/~nineteen/ +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ How manifold are the truths which must remain unuttered until the appointed time is come! Even as it has been said: "Not everything that a man knoweth can be disclosed, nor can everything that he can disclose be regarded as timely, nor can every timely utterance be considered as suited to the capacity of those who hear it." --Gleanings from the writings of Baha'u'llah +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 11:58:39 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (LuAnne Hightower) Subject: Gleanings II Allah-u-Abha, Ahang. Sounds like a great idea. How would gathering signatures for such a proposal not be interpreted as the very thing which you seemed to discourage in your posting regarding Fadil? Also, any prognosis on translation of your work on Quddus into English? And last but not least, saw your class on Islam in Louhelen's catalog - any hope of the same at Green Acre? Hoping... Warm Regards, LuAnne =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 11:06:29 -0600 (CST) Subject: Re: SDC 10: "They take no pride in gold and silver" From: "Richard C. Logan" To: "Robert Johnston" , Cc: Robert writes: >These matters are sometimes a bit confusing. I can think of one place = where >Baha'u'llah identifies with the Imam (Husayn?) who died and was = decapitated >on the plain of Karbila. Perhaps Quddus' relationship was similar. Mark >Foster, no doubt, has a good explanation this, but, IMV, the unity must be >levels other than that/those of "Manifestationship". Remember that >Baha'u'llah was also a "human being". Differentation between >Manifestations and other beings centres on things like the fact that >Manifestations of God, uniquely, bring a new "Book" and inaugurate new >universal religions. The Imams and Quaddus did neither. It is difficult to say anything definitive about these things, but in = my estimate, it seems clear from "The Dawnbreakers", which isn=B9t = authoritative but was reviewed, as I understand it, by Baha'u'llah = himself, that Quddus revealed Writing's just as Isaiah and Jeremiah = did. From the behavior of Mullah Husayn towards Quddus (at the Siege = of Fort Tabarsi) after reading some of these Writings one cannot help = but conclude that His station (Quddus), at that time, was not far = from that of the Bab himself. Additionally, in my humble judgment, Jesus the Christ did not bring a = "Book" as did Moses and Muhammad, nor did He even have Writings as we = normally view it. Although, He did have Teachings that revolutionized = the world and He did have a Revelation and He did inaugurate a new = dispensation. Richard Richard C. Logan firstname.lastname@example.org Maintain HomePape "The Baha'is of Lubbock" http://rampages.onramp.net/~nineteen/ +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ How manifold are the truths which must remain unuttered until the appointed time is come! Even as it has been said: "Not everything that a man knoweth can be disclosed, nor can everything that he can disclose be regarded as timely, nor can every timely utterance be considered as suited to the capacity of those who hear it." --Gleanings from the writings of Baha'u'llah +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ =END= From: email@example.com Date: Thu, 11 Jan 96 11:22:16 PST Subject: RE: humility & forgiveness-neurolinguistically To: firstname.lastname@example.org, SFotos@eworld.com, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org On Thu, 11 Jan 1996 02:29:27 -0800 SFotos@eworld.com wrote: >On Jan 9, Philip wrote; > Thanks for picking up this thread, Sandy. Were you in Boston at ABS? I seem to remember meeting you there. >>>... brain architecture also seems to suggest this multi-level analysis of >emotions with the raw emotions being the more immediate responses and the >refining ones being the more >"spiritual" more modulating ones. Forgiveness, then, in my analysis, would >be a manifestaion of the neo-cortical activity. > >>>So I leave here is with this question: If forgiveness can be understood as >a meta response to emotions, and if basic emotional responses are refined >by high level, self reflective, mediating brain functions, then how would >we fit into this model a spiritual quality like detachment? >-------------------- > >Philip asks: Where, neurobiologically speaking, are our spiritual virtues and >qualities? > >A few years ago, sociobiologists investigated an evidently genetically >determined behavior pattern they called the "altruism gene." This referred >to acts of self-sacrifice in various species-- including humans. Such >behavior was interpreted as evolutionarily favored because it conferred >survival advantages on members of the population in which it appeared >(although not necessarily on the carrier!). For example, we can read in the >papers about bystanders who, instantly and without thinking, leap into rivers >and attempt to pull out drowning people, losing their own lives in the >process. > >This argument suggests to me that virtues and spiritual qualities are encoded >in genetic material--within the cortex- Actually, I think this impulse would be located in the Amygdala, but I don't know how to check this out immediately. Amygdala driven responses over-ride thinking, happen before reflective thinking. I'm not sure what the implications are of this distinction at this point in the conversation, but it's probably worth noting. -and I'd like to elaborate on this >from a neurolinguistic perspective since I see language to be a key to >spiritualization for most people. This point would support the idea that the process of spiritualization is something in the neo-cortex. And it also suggests that there is some relationship between spiritualization and consciousness. > >There are two presently competing view of brain organization regarding >language learning: > >(1) The cognitive argument that languages are learned distributively--there >are no dedicated brain mechanisms for different linguistic domains. We learn >languages like we learn any other skill, through practice. > >(2) The generative argument--coming from the great linguist Noam Chomsky's >Universal Grammar concept--that we are hardwired to learn languages, possess >an innate form of linguistic knowledge which is activated by the environment >and that specific linguistic modules exist in the human brain--a "language >organ", if you like. >Empirical evidence seems to support the second argument up through puberty. >And, through studies of brain-damaged individuals, the left brain hemisphere >has been determined to be the site of linguistic specialization (In case >there are any linguists around, I'd better add that the modular nature of >recent linguistic theory suggests that linguistic knowledge is distributed in >various locations, with redundancy, and that associative learning mechanisms >can account for much language learning, so the situation is not as >uncontroversial as I've just outlined) >This point has been raised previously on Talisman and several list members >have posted on brain bilateralism--that linear processes such as language, >logic and mathematics are located in the left lobe and holistic, intuitive >processes in the right. It may well be that "spiritual modules" exist, > distributed through the right lobe. These would be specialized brain >mechanisms comprised of innate spiritual qualities and virtues (such as >Philip's detachment)--ready to be activated through personal effort and >environmental influences. From Philip: (Philip's detachment is not terribly exemplary -- and he acknowledges the need for more personal effort), but never mind that. Your idea is that specific spiritual virtues are in localized areas of the brain. And why not. The brain is a complex organ of highly specialized subsystem. As work with aphasic patients demonstrates, there are areas for recognizing speech which are separate from areas for creating speech. It is possible for a brain injured person to be able to name something he sees with his left eye but to be unable to name it when he sees it with his right eye. I'm not sure that I can follow the move from specific virtues to spirituality per se but I think there is something to what you are getting at. Did you get to your point about language and spirituality? I think I missed it. > >If this is so, then imagine the consequences of going against our genetic >programming. We are designed to be spiritual beings; when we are not then we >suffer greatly. Imagine someone who couldn't understand or speak a >language--how much would be missing from that person's existence. In the same >way, if we don't develop our innate spiritual nature, we will be as miserable >as a flightless bird--something which is not doing the main thing it was >designed to do. Maybe this is why that particular metaphor was used by >'Abdu-l-Baha to describe flawed human conditions. > > >Best, >Sandy Fotos > > > > > > > > > ------------------------------------- Name: Philip Belove E-mail: email@example.com Date: 01/11/96 Time: 11:22:16 This message was sent by Chameleon ------------------------------------- Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein =END= From: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Thu, 11 Jan 96 09:27:45 PST Subject: RE2: forgiveness To: email@example.com, Don Peden , firstname.lastname@example.org, Jim Blake <email@example.com>, firstname.lastname@example.org Bev, Thank you for this thoughtful response. To be engaged so intelligently around these questions is such a special pleasure for me and would be so under any circumstances. To be so engaged in this amazing internet with me in Vermont and you in... where is it?...somewhere in Africa?.. is that right? ... well,even it's just out of town, it certainly spins my head around. On Thu, 11 Jan 96 16:59:37+030 Bev Peden wrote: >>The explanation makes some sense now. Yes, I agree that often one >party >>needs to be more forgiving than the other due to different levels of >>understanding or information. > > Then Philip said: >All true. Good. But the discovery that was new and important to me >was that forgiveness itself was a higher level reality than simple >responsiveness. And I began to think that all these spiritual >qualities are part of this same higher level. The language dissolves >in my hands when I try to talk about it, but I think there is a great >difference between say, having feelings about something, and then, on >the higher level, having feelings about the feelings we are having. > >It is at this meta level where forgiveness happens, and I suspect it >is also where humility happens. I don't know yet about compassion. > >Detachment is another matter entirely. > And now, Bev comes back with these questions. (Her comments preceeded by the arrow-heads.) > >Dear Philip: > >This raises yet another question...if an individual (or institution) is able >to "stand outside" one set of emotions or reactions and respond with another >set of decisions about how to inform and direct the reactions, is this the >"shock absorber" part? It's good that you put "stand outside" in quotes. The answer to the questions, "Is this the 'shock absorber' part?" is "yes." It's one thing to be totally caught up in the feelings of reaction and quite a better thing to have a larger perspective on one's emotional experience. Emotions move us. They call us to action. They set directions. The amydala takes a reading, makes a judgement on a situation, and activates the hormone system and our body become primed to do something. This happens before we get a chance to think about it. In this respect we are no different than any other mammal. But there is another part that operates separately. There is a part of us that can read our own feelings. This is undeveloped in some people. For example, violent people often need to be taught to recognize their anger. Often they are not able to tell when they are getting angry. They don't "know" they are angry until they've acted. At the other extreme, there are people who are virtuosos at recognizing their emotional responses and can do so in very finely nuanced ways. We expect judges to have this kind of refined evaluative skill. We read movie, art, theater and other critics for their ability to clarify and explain their emotional responses. That, Bev, is how I would respond to your request for clarity on what I mean by the shock absorber part. > And at what stage do both become integrated again, >as they must if you are truely to have unity of the decision. Now, (and thank you again for these thoughtful questions), before going onto your example, let me address this question of unity at the theoretical level. The first answer I think of is that they are always integrated and never not integrated. Let me explain. Every living system is always made of interacting parts. You can't have a living entity that isn't so made. Heart works with lungs to form circulatory system and this system works with other subsystems , nervous system, skeleto-muscular system, endocrine system to form the whole person. The whole person works with other whole persons to form families; families to form communities; communities to nations to species to ecosystems; systems within systems. The little wheels run by faith, the big wheels run by the Grace of God. Forgive me for getting lyrical. Back to your queston. >For example, >say a spouse is confronted with the situation of infidelity on the part of >their partner. On one level, you have a set of reactions...hurt, anger, >etc. On the next level, this detached part of the individual looks at the >situation, and tells the person..."forgive, learn from the experience, and >get back to the every day living of job/family/etc". > >Now, is this response coming from their higher self, noble as it might be, >or is it a panic reaction trying to stuff jack back in his box and make >things like they use to be...and of course they never can be because there >has been a tremendous breach of faith, hurt, and betrayal, and both people >have changed drastically because of the experience. Bev, I know you have more to say on this matter and I'm interrupting here to slow down the flow of your ideas. You have asked THE question, of course. You have produced a perfect example to probe the meaning of this idea of higher and lower level processes. But in the next sentence here, you introduce an idea about the Higher Self that isn't a good descriptor ( I don't think) of the higher self. And that is where the confusion starts. So here is where it happens, I think. >What happens when the >person hastily allows their higher self to dictate a response, masks any >true reaction, and burys it under the guise of forgiveness? First, the guise of forgiveness isn't forgiveness. What you've called the "guise of forgiveness" may be an initial inhibitory response to keep the person from, not stuff Jack back in the box, but from slicing Jack off at the root. This higher self might first just want to inhibit the action and buy time. The lower self, the amydagla/ animal/ survival oriented response always calls for action now. The higher self says "wait. Let me think about this." And the example you've raised, the discovery of infidelity, is an enormously complex issue to think through. It can take months. Meanwhile, at the gut level, there is the call to action. The image that comes to mind here is a scene of a woman I know out walking her dog, alone i the park, and a stranger comes up. There she is, holding the leash, the dog on four alarm alert, hair on end, teeth bared, trying to decide what to do. And this leads to your next question about the woman who'd just learned about the infidelity. Should she hold onto her anger or become a martyr? > Do you think it >will just go away, or transform itself into some martyr status, or what? Or >is it going to fester and raise it's ugly head some time in the future as >stress and unfinished business. The answer is that she doesn't punish the dog, she doesn't deny her anger. She thinks about it. She decides whether she wants to do all the work involved in forgiving. (Actually you've really pushed me into some interesting places with your questions and I'm starting to think that forgiveness, unlike the emotional reflex, requires work, thinking, sorting through and so on. As Scott Peck said in Road Less Traveled, "Love is not a feeling, it is something you do." So too, forgiveness. ) Back to you: Is this really the meaning of that >spiritual self, or are we taking a spiritual reality and trying to make it >fit into our North American style of dealing with emotions (which is usually >to deny them expression, or to control our environment so that our >expression will look appropriate)? > >What I am getting at with this senerio is the idea that although their can >be a "second" self, or "higher level" of response, it is critical that >honesty is its guide, or you can end up talking yourself into hasty >responses which might be inappropriate in the circumstances, and actually >prevent growth by masking important issues which need to be dealt with. > Right. Absolutely. Although it would be interesting to unpack "honesty" in this connection. You seem to mean "honesty" in the sense of not "masking important issues." So that would mean really listening to your feelings, really allowing the amygdalla's particular melody to be heard in the fore-brain. And, I see here that you, in your own way, have been working up to the point I rushed to insert earlier, that this takes time, that "hasty responses" can be self-defeating. >I have chosen this senerio because it would present a dilemma for the >individual...it is not a situation which you have no control over, such as a >death of someone close to you, and you just have to work through. It is a >situation which is highly emotionally charged, and you have many choices you >can make...your choice will be based on spiritual awareness. > >In the same way, we get very emotional about our faith, our relationships >between ourselves and others in our faith, and the relationships between >ourselves and the institutions which represent our faith. This is not a >"take it or leave it" kind of set-up. You are dealing with slices from the >heart...felt betrayal, feelings of abandonment, etc. To rise "above" these >emotions and "cushion" the response and put into action something which will >bring it back to normal quickly may not be to the benefit of the individual >or community, even if it makes people in the community feel better that the >status quo is "intact" and "restored". So true, Bev. In fact, it is just this sort of situation, my relationship with faith, others in the faith and so on, and the related pain and, God, the confusion, that drove me to all this work. I especially like your point about how the call to "rise above these emotions ...to bring it back to normal quickly maynot be to the benefit of the individual or community." It has been difficult for me to acknowledge how long it takes to forgive. Fortunately many in the faith and on Talisman have been very supportive on just this particular matter and have encouraged me to respect my own processes. So there seems to be some lore about this issue. Back to you again. For me, this is where the confusion >enters with the analogy of the car. People and communities, unlike cars, >perhaps, can benefit from bouncing along out of control for a stretch to see >if there are new parameters we can reach, and new levels for what is >"acceptable". Too much "control" can also provide a mask for something >which needs to be examined, dealt with and transcended. > That's quite true. The car analogy has only limited usefulness. It does seem to be a way to talk about the "meta" nature of forgiveness. But a car doesn't learn. Every bump is a new experience. If I were to take the meta levels further, this is what I would have to do. The next level up would be the owner of the car. There are shock absorbers that can be adjusted for different kinds of roads. In those vehicles, if the car is bouncing too much , the owner resets the shocks. That would be the third level. This is how systems work. I'm sure that within humans we work these adjustments at more than three levels. and here again, I've only anticipate your own thinking, as follows: >On the other hand, the higher self could pull the responsive self along to a >different level of understanding and reaction, if this process of honesty is >honoured. > >So, is the spiritual act in the forgiveness, or is it in the process of >honestly searching through the motives informing the act of forgiveness, or >are they part of the same process? Would humility result from the >recognition achieved through this honest examination of motives that we are >sometimes motivated by reactions less that spiritual, even though they have >a "spiritual" mask? This is wonderful, Bev. And some interesting implications I'd like to run by here. I had said that humility isn't something you just decide to do. And, in a wry sort of mood, I'd wondered whether there was a better way to acquire humility other than suffering humiliations. Now, you seem to be suggesting that learning to forgive, the hard work of genuine forgiveness, the willingness to stay in the process of creating forgiveness can produce genuine humility. > And what about the role of boundaries? Bev, Another major topic. I was thinking about this, as well, at about this point in the search. I was thinking about the betrayed spouse. I think one could forgive the betrayor and even love the betrayor, but never again place trust and in "I love you, I wish you well, but I believe I can't trust you again as my spouse, not for too long a time, at least. and I want to go on with my life".---- as being one possible outcome. So here is a form of forgiveness as well as a form of boundary marking. But let's see what you do with it. I think this is your thread and I'll try to follow it: > Do individuals >have a right to set a "boundary" for their own spiritual protection? If an >institution stomps all over a person's spirituality, does the individual >have the right to declare boundaries to an institution? They can with an >individual, but can they with an institution? And if they do set such a >boundary, at what point does that become "disobedience"? > Here, I think we come close to the issues Juan has been talking about in his postings about conscience. And I've been agreeing with Juan, although the matter is complex and I'm not sure all the nuances are well captured. But I think the individual has more than a right, but perhaps even an obligation to set a boundary for his/her own spiritual protection. I think that, if you want to know what someone holds sacred, see what it is they most protect,i.e., where they have set up the most careful boundaries. I love the question about whether an individual has a right to declare boundaries to an institution? I think that when we declare our faith, or accept a baptism, or an initiation, we allow some institution access to our Holy of Holies. But maybe all we really do is agree to the process of allowing access. I tend to think in love-making metaphors here which is probably appropriate, especially the way there is a subtle negotiation of trust in love making and how sometimes lovers are more open to each other than at other times. I think this is a beautiful thread. >Does the institution have the right to set boundaries for itself? Should >those boundaries be respected, or are they not allowed to have boundaries >because of our ideas of public office inherited from our political system? >Is it appropriate to attach present political values to a "spiritual >institution", or are we simply regarding our institutions as political >identities? If we view them in a political light, where does spirituality >come in? > Maybe my ideas about the negotiation of trust and the analogy to love-making are helpful here. I suppose some think about love-making in a political context and talk about conjugal rights and obligations. But that is a very different world from (quoting Paul Simon) Negotiations and Love Songs. >And yes, the infallibility being present in the act of learning through >decisions making, and even the right to make mistakes and learn from them, >has a certain validity in my mind. I'm sure there are many opinions on >this. However, I don't see how we can avoid it. We have the writings, but >we will bump our noses many times before we work out how to apply them, and >then it will change anyway...it is all relative. Even the Universal House >of Justice sometimes decides to defer a decision, because either they do not >have enough information, it is not timely, or it is not clear to them how >the writings are meant to be applied. Bev, it seems that here we reconnect with earlier threads. This idea that the higher, more spiritual functions need time to think things through, to feel all the feelings and all the nuances, to search for guidance. I also want to add something about the role of infallibility in the Negotiation of Love. The closer one gets initially to the Holy of Holies in each of us, the more trust is asked for, the more delicacy is required. So I imagine infallibility has something to do with great loving delicacy and tact. And this is a very different idea about infallibility than the idea of being able to make the correct decisiions. It is an idea about being able to proceed in a correct manner. The zen quote comes to mind, "entering the forest without disturbing a leaf, entering the water without a ripple." And if they legislate something for >today, it may be changed in future due to changing circumstances. This >indicates a process to me rather than a fixed linear truth. "Process." And once again, Bev, I feel like I am thinking right in step with you on these issues. Am I? The short version of the idea is that True Infallibility is manifested in Process and Style more than in Conclusions. So all decisions are perfectly timed. (This by the way relates to some other thoughts about progressive revelation and how, as Baha'ullah has said -- and others as well -- the door can only be open so far and any given time. ) This is one >thing I feel sure of. (And because it is the one thing I feel sure of, the >Great Cosmic Mushroom will probably decide this is the one thing which will >be swept from under my feet...just to keep me moving and not allow me to get >too attached to any one place in my head.) > >Love, > >Bev. > Bev, this had been a profound pleasure for me. Thank you. ------------------------------------- Name: Philip Belove E-mail: email@example.com Date: 01/11/96 Time: 09:27:45 This message was sent by Chameleon ------------------------------------- Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein =END= From: "Eric D. Pierce" To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 10:08:00 PST8PDT Subject: Re: Decentralization Help - talisman email compilation Cc: email@example.com, Bahaifirstname.lastname@example.org Hi Mr. James, I am forwarding your request to the Baha'i email discussion list at email@example.com. If I do not hear of any objections to your request over the next few days, I'll forward the messages with the exception of the ones that I have received specific instructions to excise from the compilation. Apparently there were privacy concerns about distribution of some of the messages to persons outside the talisman subscriber list. EP > Date sent: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 21:48:46 +1100 > From: firstname.lastname@example.org > Subject: Re: Decentralization Help - talisman email compilation > To: "Eric D. Pierce" > Copies to: Bahaiemail@example.com > I would like a copy of the Decentralism file in WordPerfect 6.0a or earlier, > alternatively ASCII Text would do. > > Keith James, firstname.lastname@example.org > PO Box 212, SCOTTSDALE TAS 7260 AUSTRALIA > International Phone/FAX +61 03 522982 > Local Phone/Fax 003 522 982 Mobile 018 135 920 > email@example.com =END= Date: 11 Jan 96 13:11:39 EST From: Steven Scholl <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: Talisman Subject: Ahang's Publishing Proposal Dear Ahang and Company, Wonderful proposal on publishing new translations. In light of the evident thirst for more mystically oriented texts within the community, I suggest that this be explicitly stated in the proposal. Much of the groundwork for moving from provisional to official translations of Baha'i mystical texts has been done by Lambden, Lawson, Cole, Walbridge, Momen, Brown, and others. I will be happy to sign on to any statement and can offer the services of White Cloud Press to such efforts. Best wishes, Steve Scholl =END= From: "Eric D. Pierce" To: email@example.com Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 11:19:33 PST8PDT Subject: sociobiology?/ Re: humility & forgiveness-neurolinguistically Ha Ha! Finally, the opening I was waiting for. A while ago, (during the debate over evolution and homosexuality?) Juan mentioned that he is down on sociobiology. Is anyone besides me interested in asking him to elaborate? Grrrrr Woof Woof! EP > From: SFotos@eworld.com > Date sent: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 02:29:27 -0800 > To: firstname.lastname@example.org > Subject: humility & forgiveness-neurolinguistically ...snip > Philip asks: Where, neurobiologically speaking, are our spiritual virtues and > qualities? > > A few years ago, sociobiologists investigated an evidently genetically > determined behavior pattern they called the "altruism gene." This referred > to acts of self-sacrifice in various species-- including humans. Such > behavior was interpreted as evolutionarily favored because it conferred > survival advantages on members of the population in which it appeared > (although not necessarily on the carrier!). ... =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 11:44:56 -0700 To: " Jean Lali Varqua Elmira" , Talisman@indiana.edu From: email@example.com (Gordon McFarlane) Subject: Ruth Eyford Dear Friends: I received word this morning from Michael Bopp, that Ruth Eyford, died this morning at her home in St. Albert, Alberta at 7:00 after a long courageous battle with cancer. Ruth had served on the National Spiritual Assemlby of Canada and, more recently, as a member of the Auxillary Board. For many years Ruth assisted in the deepening of the believers throughout western Canada and elsewhere. I personally owe her a debt of gratitude for bringing me to a closer understanding of the Faith. The funeral is Saturday at 3:15 pm. Prayers on her behalf, and for her husband Glenn Eyford son Helgi and daughter Thora would no doubt be appreciated. Gord -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- --- Gordon McFarlane e-mail: MCFARLANE@upanet.uleth.ca 919 11th Sreet South Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada T1J2P7 (403)327-2987 =END= Date: Wed, 10 Jan 96 23:50:01 -0500 From: "Ahang Rabbani" To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: various [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] 1. Deepest gratitude to 23 Talismanians who responded with technical instructions on how to clean up the "dirty paper". Suggestions ranged from use of liquid paper to very sophisticated computer equipments used in intelligence gathering! I'll be experimenting with OCR methods this weekend and may bother some of you (off line) with further questions. For now, please accept this note as a THANK YOU to all who responded. 2. Steve Scholl's comments about requesting the House to publish more of the mystical Writings is very close to my own heart and a number of other Talismanians have suggested the same thing in their private notes too. So, will build that into the letter and post a draft for your consideration. 3. LuAnne very insightfully said: > How would gathering signatures for such a proposal not be > interpreted as the very thing which you seemed to discourage in > your posting regarding Fadil? I think one could make a distinction between presenting the House with a *group* suggestion and organizing a campaign to force the institutions into a particular action. Let me explain. I see this proposal as showing the House how we thirst to have more of Baha'u'llah's Writings available generally. But in the case of Fadil, I think it can be perceived as a campaign to force a course of action on the institutions -- which naturally they would push back! I don't know if this make sense or if I explained it clearly, but as an example recall the US 1985 National Convention petitioning the House for the law of Huququ'llah. We are now paying for that... ;-} 4. LuAnne also asked: > any prognosis on translation of your work on Quddus into > English? I have made a commitment to Novin Dustar (Hi Novin!) of Oneworld to, insha'llah, produce an English version in 1996. Am making good progress. love to all, ahang. =END= Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 13:18:43 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Gordon McFarlane) Subject: Ruth Eyford Dear Friends: I received word this morning from Michael Bopp, that Ruth Eyford, died this morning at her home in St. Albert, Alberta at 7:00 after a long courageous battle with cancer. Ruth had served on the National Spiritual Assemlby of Canada and, more recently, as a member of the Auxillary Board. For many years Ruth assisted in the deepening of the believers throughout western Canada and elsewhere. I personally owe her a debt of gratitude for bringing me to a closer understanding of the Faith. The funeral is Saturday at 3:15 pm. Prayers on her behalf, and for her husband Glenn Eyford son Helgi and daughter Thora would no doubt be appreciated. Gord -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- --- Gordon McFarlane e-mail: MCFARLANE@upanet.uleth.ca 919 11th Sreet South Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada T1J2P7 (403)327-2987 =END= From: "QUANTA DAWNLIGHT" To: email@example.com Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 13:59:06 EST Dear Folks, Our server is restored. Alas! everything after November 14, 1995 is lost including the HOMEPAGE! The system had totally crashed and I had no back-up files. That's life! I'll work on the homepage and include Brent Poirier and Sandy fotos picture for your viewing next week. Some beautiful and handsome people here on talisman! You'll see!! Any computer wiz's help with HTML is deeply appreciated. lovingly, =END= [end of 1/11/96 session] Talisman emails received 1/12/96-1/13/96 --------------------------------------------------------- From: TLCULHANE@aol.com Date: Thu, 11 Jan 1996 14:25:05 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Questions on Teaching etc. Dear All , Yesterday there were three comments that I still have not been able to make sense of or translate into a "meaningful " language . 1) Burl had indicated Congregatiobnalists were cool to ther idea of Bahais sharing space, The Jewish community was receptive to the idea of sharing space, one or more Bahais were not receptive to the idea of sharing space with Jews . What is the difference between the attitude expressed by the Congregationalists and one or more Bahais ? 2) Derek commented that a group of youth were going storm America with their love of the NSA and the understanding that the "problem" was local , not national and they were discussuing changing their majors in college to be of more service to humankind .This is the one that really stumps me . He mentioned they were hanging around Bosch after being in Dallas (I am working mightilly to not do a class analysis here ). What is a college major that will allow one to be of service to mankind , contrasted with ones that won't or are of lesser service ? 3) Robert ( I believe) presented a detailed blueprint for teaching in Houston or somewhere. In it he mentioned the recommendation that a goal be 10 percent of the new believers be come active teachers . My concern and question is this . What is the goal for the other 90 percent of those who become Bahai's ? I am truly interested in anyones answers to these questions . Safe to say I have my own . warm regards , Terry =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 11:52:43 -0800 From: email@example.com (DEREK COCKSHUT ) Subject: Mensa with out the N part 3 , Ahmad's fate , Award for List Owner . To: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Talismanians , The question was asked what happened to Ahmad ' the infamous seed of creation ' Annis . Veteran Talismanians will remember he was being sought by the Wild get Ahmad all women's posse in Australia . His near squeaks with the wild mob has captured the hearts and minds of the Aussie Media . The latest development is the Ladies Posse has taken up riding large red Kangaroos . When the 6' 2" Aussie Amazons of the Wild Get Ahamd All Women's Posse said they would break , train and then ride the Roos to hunt Ahmad in the out-back , many people laughed including Ahmad . Now the sight of them mounted on thirty large red Roos waving their banners repent from Seed or you know what Ahmad , is bring tears to many eyes in Australia . Ahmad in the meantime is waiting for the arrival of the 3 ,747 Jumbo Jets full of young ladies wanting to marry the lonely chap . Due to weather conditions the 2 planes from the East Coast of the USA are still waiting on the runway . On one plane fighting broke out due Linda's Shiite Women Rule attack squad getting on board . They thought the flight was going to the Walbridge private airport in Bloomington Ind . When the police arrived to sought out the problem , the combined forces of Ahmad wantees and Linda devotees threatened the poor officers with the old standby . "We are going to debag you now". This cleared the airport of every available policeman . The Police Officer Union in New York is asking for special assistance to get the men over this trauma . Ahmad whom you will recall has never been out with a young lady before is very nervous . He crashed his yellow Ford Capri but has obtained a stretched Mini Minor instead . He has to take out 1451 girls in a 21 day period .Giving him 5 hours sleep each night and 1 hour for food and other calls of nature .He has exactly 15. 63 minutes with each girl , I think Ahmad has a problem . Linda also mentioned she was in chains at Mensa with out the N in DC . Making out this was John's fault , I would point out that Linda each night wore her black and white Shiite Ninja outfit with the black and gold lace at the collar and ankles . She had over this ensemble her Black leather jacket with the chains attached . Sort Hells Angels style with an Eastern twist if you get my drift .Engraved on the back of the Jacket are the letters N.T.M. S. W. R. what does it mean I do not know I suggest we all post Linda and ask the question . John poor soul was locked in the Walbridge hotel room by the mass of Linda's Shiite women followers demanding 'temp 'marriage with him because of John's Arabic Grammar . The hotel room maid was a sweet lady from Cuba called Carina . When she tried to clean and tidy up the Walbridge deluxe Suite she had to fight off Linda's supporters with a feather duster . With crys of get out mi room ,nice hombre no play with naughty girls , she managed to deliver soap shampoo and towels daily . Linda in the meantime was prowling around Washington in her Hells Angel Jacket with the chains on . My dear Friend Burl will be posting what Linda did near the White House . In response to Linda's Statement regarding searchlights and guard dogs at the Mysticism Conference at Bosch . That is purely a defensive response to her threats to get poor David Langness . She has also gone on record saying that her loyal squad of Shiite Women will be attending and are planning to go swinging through our Redwoods . Apparently she is angry with David for not letting her present her new theory ' Meditating under water is the closest you can get to Basra ' Linda has decreed that David is anti-Khass . I asked Sherman about Linda as he took a moment from training the Mighty Bobo . He said John deserves the highest award for staying with her . So am I happy to announce that Professor John Walbridge can place C. G. S. P. after his name for noble services . Welcome John to this noble order . Juan in the meantime is still under sedation because Linda's Wild Shi'ite Women trapped him in the Laundry . They had hoped to use Juan to get John to open the Hotel room door . Juan being a loyal friend had refused to be captured for such a dreadful deed . They poured liquid soap all over him in an effort to make him change his mind and come out . When he would not they sprayed him with yellow paint and then used a hot water hose on him . The result made Juan look like a giant yellow bubble . Linda thinks all this is very funny and is looking forward to visiting England . If she contacts me and promises to be good I might be able to help . But first Linda Walbridge , you had better start being nicer to John . Keeping him locked in the cupboard under the stairs because you want an increase in your dress allowance from $3000 per month to $5000 per month is not right Linda as I am sure everybody will agree . What do you think Burl . Kindest Regards Derek Cockshut =END= From: "Mark A. Foster" Subject: In the News To: email@example.com Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 14:30:58 -0600 (CST) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Juan - Thanks for posting the message on Scientology. Of all the religious groups I have studies, the only one I have had negative experiences with is the late L. Ron Hubbard's Church of Scientology. I personally read, while sitting in one of the upstairs rooms of their Atlanta church, about their policy of attacking, discrediting, and attempting to ruin the lives of anyone who criticizes Scientology - member or not. They call it their "policy of fair game." Several members of the church, including Hubbard's wife, were convicted of various offenses relating to the organization's alleged unscrupulous practices. And, personally, I have, in the recent past, been hounded continually by them. I deliberately did not leave a forwarding address with the post office when I moved from Georgia to Kansas, so that these folks would not follow me here. Personally, for research purposes, I took four of their courses - including two auditor training courses. I found it interesting and somewhat useful. However, I think that the appeal of ridding oneself of "engrams," become "clear," and being free of a "reactive mind" are what get people attracted to either Scientology or Dianetics (now viewed as a specialized type of auditing - in addition to Scientology auditing). Then, the individual discovers how far one has to go. I have a copy of a huge wall chart showing all the levels of development. It just keeps on going. And each level requires more and more auditing. Studies have shown that lower-level auditing, of the sort described in the well-known book, _Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health_, are helpful to many people, but that the higher levels of auditing are essentially useless. While, on one level, I was happy, since I have a civil libertarian view of religion in American society, to see the Church of Scientology get tax-exampt status with the American Internal Revenue Service (the tax-collecting agency of the federal government), I can also empathize with a desire to be protected from them. Although I have met many fine people who were members of this organization, I would, in some respects, agree with the characterization of it as totalitarian. Blessings, Mark * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *Mark A. Foster, Ph.D., Sociologist of Religion (Structuralist) * *Sociology, JCCC, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, KS 66210-1299 U.S.A. * *Past President (1995), Kansas Sociological Society * *Director, Institute for Integral Wisdom [sm] Owner, Baha'i Studies List * *Academic Director (and Kansas Dir.), Foundation for the Science of Reality * *Board of Directors (and Talent), Tektite, Ltd. (Religion Films Production) * *Phones: 913/469-8500, ext.3376 (Office) and 913/768-4244 (Home) * *Fax: 913/469-4409 Science of Reality BBS: 913/768-1113 (8-N-1; 14.4 kbps) * *Email: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org (List Co-Moderator) * * 72642,3105 (Staff, Three CompuServe Religion Fora) UWMG94A (Prodigy)* * Realityman (America Online Ethics and Religion Forum Remote Staff) * *Home Pages: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/Science_of_Reality * * http://home.aol.com/Realityman (Note: The Web is Case-Sensitive)* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ___ * UniQWK #2141* The manifested Unity of God emanates in His creation's diversity =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 96 16:06 EST From: "William P. Collins" <email@example.com> To: Talisman Subject: Universal House of Justice Letter on Homosexuality It was with some consternation that I read the recent Talisman posting about a Baha'i who is withdrawing from the Faith because of the Universal House of Justice's letter dated 11 September 1995 regarding homosexuality (The American Baha'i, 23 Nov. 1995, p. 11). I hesitate to post on this topic, largely because previous postings by me on other Baha'i forums have been misunderstood by some as the expressions of a person who is tainted by adherence to some misguided orthodoxy. In any case, the assumptions that have been made about the Universal House of Justice's letter in this particular instance appear to me to be incorrect. I am dismayed at the deep hurt and fear that this believer feels, because I think it stems not only from an inner state, but also from a misreading of the Universal House of Justice's intent in the final paragraphs of its letter. Every religion, party, organization, group and social organization has some statement of basic principles or teachings upon which that organization is founded. This is no less true of the Baha'i Faith, which has teachings of individual tolerance and of spiritual discipline, of administrative opennes and of institutional administration of justice, of non-interference in private lives along with sanctions for flagrant behavior against the Faith's teachings. We live in a culture in which people seem to believe that it is their right and duty to force social groupings to change principles that appear disagreeable. There is some importance to this in obtaining at least a modicum of justice, witness the efforts to require places of business such as restaurants to provide non-smoking areas. But a restaurant is not founded upon smoking or non-smoking as a philosophical or social principle. In religions, the entire foundation of a spiritual culture is based upon some root principles that are so intertwined that it is impossible officially to relinquish one without crumbling the entire basis upon which the society is built. In the world religions that I know of, the family in which a mother and father nurture children within a sacred and socially supported marriage covenant is absolutely basic and necessary to the foundation of the society that the religions' Founders have envisioned. That family unit is also explicitly and implicitly stated to be the natural unit for the spiritual and psychological health of the individuals within it. What the Universal House of Justice keeps reiterating, based upon the absolutely clear statements of the Central Figures and Guardian, is that chastity, strong marriage and healthy family life are the surest protection for society now and in the future. These are not anachronistic concepts, though I firmly believe that they are being restructured in a more enlightened way in the Baha'i community than in the past religions. The Baha'i Faith, as clearly stated by the Universal House of Justice on a number of occasions, does not seek to pry into the private lives of individuals, nor to treat them with discourtesy, disparagement or bigotry. Homosexuals seem not to have grasped that the "culture wars" now being waged in the United States become very hot when there is a demand for societal approval or sacramental recognition of homosexual acts, and even homosexual unions and families. Neither the Central Figures, nor the Guardian, nor any institution, can become a source of approval for homosexual acts or unions. This is no more possible than that they could support racial separation or recreational drug use. To expect otherwise is to hold oneself under a kind of masochistic self-punishment. I remember once when I was talking to a non-Baha'i social worker about a Baha'i teaching that I had trouble with. Her question to me was, "Since you know this teaching of the Baha'i religion, why did you join it, and why do you remain a member? Why do you think that the collective teachings of your religion should be changed for you?" At the end of its letter the Universal House of Justice refers to "the organized network of homosexual Baha'is." I do not know the extent to which the homosexual Baha'i who is withdrawing is aware of the background here. In the Baha'i community, there have been at least two groups dealing with sexuality issues. One, the Institute on AIDS, Sexuality and Addiction (IASA) of the Baha'i International Health Agency, is open to any Baha'i who agrees to the institute's principles, and it is supported by the professional association, Baha'i institutions, and the Board of Counsellors through its Auxiliary Board members. The particpants in IASA start with the premise that the teachings of the Faith on chastity, homosexuality, alcohol and drug use are not up for change; that the participants are faithful to the Covenant and the guidance of the institutions; and that the Faith's high standards of conduct will be maintained among attendees at conferences. Another group of homosexuals has also been meeting, with the premise that institutions should be petitioned for a change in the Baha'i approach to homosexuality and homosexuals, focused on the assumption that homosexuals cannot change and are being treated unfairly. It is to the latter group, I believe, that the Universal House of Justice refers. The Universal House of Justice, as Head of the Faith, can no more condone an organized group of Baha'i homosexuals who seek an endorsement of their actions and identity, than it could condone a Baha'i Recreational Drug Users Society, or a Baha'i Wine-Drinkers Association. The context of the following statement by the House has thus been misinterpreted, in my view: "...according to the Baha'i Teachings there can be no place in our community for groups which actively promote a style of life that is contrary to the teachings of the Cause." This is not, as far as I can see, to be understood as a blanket statement that there is no place for homosexuals in the Baha'i community. Such a reading is obviously untrue given the number of active Baha'is who have had to deal with homosexuality in their own emotional makeup. The groups to which the House of Justice is referring are those organized by Baha'is to (1) separate themselves from other believers on the basis of identities founded around forbidden acts, and (2) to lobby for a change in the expressly-stated teachings of the Faith on one or more moral issues. In light of the basic underpinning of the family and children as the bedrock of a healthy social structure, it is impossible to see how the Faith's representatives could be induced to state (1) that homosexuality is acceptable or (2) that one or more groups of Baha'is who are seeking to make it acceptable should be encouraged or implicitly condoned. I could go into deeper discussion of the whole notion of homosexual and heterosexual "identity." The notion of sexual identity is a twentieth century construction stemming in part from Freud's 19th-century diagnosis of homosexuality as a "condition." Before then, sexual acts between members of the same sex could be seen as simply a passing phase, a mistake, a non-permanent choice, a sin to repent of, or any number of other ways that were not fixed. The prevailing dogma today is that one has to have a sexual identity; thus, being homosexual or bisexual or heterosexual is somehow a fixed reality with which one has to identify. I think this is a mistaken notion and in time will be seen by all people as a straitjacket to natural human development, as well as a highly divisive and unnatural focus of attention. My main point is that the Universal House of Justice was not making a statement intended to close the Faith to homosexuals. It was making a statement that some teachings are truly fundamental and universal, that they are not simply time-conditioned policies that are to be changed with every social pressure by ideologically and sexually committed people with a lot to say. The House was also saying that an organized community with such basic moral principles cannot officially recognize internal groups that want to press for those basic principles to be changed. Bill Collins =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 12:39:49 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Doug Myers) Subject: RE: Teaching: What it is and is not/chasing our tails: Woodburn >Doug: It might be useful for you to give us a brief history of the whole >thing, as well as what went wrong in your view. > >Juan Dear Juan, Rick, and all Talismanians, Before I begin let me state that these may not be the absloute facts and are my impressions and remberances of hearing and reading about Woodburn and of two and a half days with my friend Richard Hutchins at the Wordburn Baha'i Center. Woodburn is a nice little town of 13,000 with a rural flavor with a mixed population of white, Hispanic, and Ukranian/Russian. As an interesting side note, the owners of the Chinese restaurant Richard and I ate in are a Chinese family who choose to live in Portland and commute each day. The Institute had been started by the LSA of Clackamas County SW several years ago. We all remember the wonderful atmosphere of service to humanity and the teaching of the Faith we heard about and read of in "American Baha'i". This was a real working example of how the Faith could be of help to a group of people and an area. Richard told me that when he arrived in Woodburn the Woodburn Institute was going great guns. It was feeding migrant workers breakfast, giving out free bread, giving English as Second Language classes (ESL), helping people with obtaining drivers liscenses along with other beaurocratic problems, and doing some Baha'i teaching. Richard has pioneered in Bolivia and he was trying to work his way there when he passed though Woodburn. He stayed to help for a while. I'm not sure of the time frame of several events and their relation to each other, but, the Institute moved from its original location to where it is now in a large building on Front Street in the heart of the Hispanic center of town; the person who had been the driving force behind the Institute began to burn out and decided to take a break from the Institute to give the needed attention to her growing children that she had not had time for; and there were some severe personality problems/misunderstandings. With the move the city authorites asked that the Institute not serve meals at the new location. They agreed but continued to do so. One morning several women came in and it was assumed they were there for the ESL class. Half way through the class one of them asks, "When is someone going to tell us about Baha'i?" The various service projects had overshadowed the teaching of the Faith. Also, the free meals had created a negative dependancy situation where people ate breakfast at the Baha'i Center and called themselves Baha'is and ate dinner at the Salvation Army and called themselves Christians. When you are hungery you learn to work the system until it becomes addictive. There was a short period of time when the Center was closed. the people that counted on it for meals and a place to go got the feeling that the Faith is not here to stay --- here by day and gone by night. This brings to mind the old Chinese (?) saying about if you give a man a fish today he eats today, but, if you teach him to fish he eats everyday. The Institute was addressing the symptom but not the problem. Has it happened, there was a great falling away of help for several reasons. The LSA of Clackamas County SW is still picking up the rent, about $500 per month, there is donation of time by a few interested Baha'is from Wood Village, a suberb of Portland, and others in the area. The Assembly that was raised in Woodburn is trying to grow with its responsability of the functioning of the Center (some members speak Spanish, some speak English --- but only two are bilingual). Richard was in the right place at the right time to move into, care for, and coordinate the functions of the Center. He has no gainful employment and is constantly surprised how Baha'u'llah keeps him afloat. He figures that as long as that happens he is meant to be there, though he still wistfully dreams of Bolivia. The Woodburn Baha'i Institute was a beautiful idea , a noble concept, but as so many "helpful" intentions it had hurtful unintended consequences. (My personal prayer has always been: Save me from the person with good intentions.) BUT, all is not lost. If some bilingual Baha'is were to arise and move to Woodburn the crop that has been planted, and there has been much of that, can be harvested. The souls are ready and receptive but it will take time, understanding, willingness to give selflessly of your time to teach and deepen and teach and deepen, etc. There is a vast reservoir of good will with the migrants, business people, city officials, newspapers, etc. There is a lot to build. On thing I learned from this and the BIC statement "The Prosperity of Humankind" is that we *cannot* go into a community with our preconceived notions of what will help them. This *must* be determined by the people who will receive the assistance themselves. I hope this helps give an understanding of the situation in Woodburn and doesn't just muddy the waters. Doug Myers firstname.lastname@example.org "Nothng survives but the way we live our lives." JB =END= From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 21:50:13 +0100 (MET) Subject: infallibility & authority To: email@example.com Brent (Jan 10) asked a good question about the relationship between infallibility and authority: "My own view is that in those areas of non-infallibility -- the Guardian identified some specifically -- the Guardian made clear that the believer was free to obey or not, as these were merely his suggestions. Therefore he not only declared the matter as outside of the scope of his infallibilty, but of his authority to command that the believers obey. I do feel that the scope of infallibility and the scope of authority are coterminous." One objection I see to this is that if authority and infallibility are coterminous, and infallibility is limited to defined sphere, then the Guardian would not have had the authority to do what he did, and the faith would very likely have fallen apart. Let me unpack that: According to the Guardian: The interpretation of the Guardian, functioning within his own sphere, is as authoritative and binding as the enactments of the International House of Justice, whose exclusive right and prerogative is to pronounce upon and deliver the final judgment on such laws and ordinances as Baha'u'llah has not expressly revealed. (The Dispensation of Baha'u'llah, page 58 of the booklet format) From this I take the following: - the legislation of the Universal House of Justice is authoritative and binding (in respect to that which is not expressly revealed). - the interpretation of the Guardian is authoritative and binding (when functioning within his own sphere). Now the authority of the Guardian under the Will and Testament of `Abdu'l-Baha was much wider: The mighty stronghold shall remain impregnable and safe through obedience to him who is the Guardian of the Cause of God. It is incumbent upon the members of the House of Justice, upon all the Aghsan, the Afnan, the Hands of the Cause of God to show their obedience, submissiveness and subordination unto the Guardian of the Cause of God, to turn unto him and be lowly before him. He that opposeth him hath opposed the True One, (Will and Testament p. 11) And clearly this unlimited authority was necessary, for example for Shoghi Effendi to be able to make preparatory steps to elect the Universal House of Justice - which in the broadest sense included his remodelling of the feast, calling for the election of National Spiritual Assemblies, drawing up of teaching plans and so forth. As regards the election of National Spiritual Assemblies, for example, there was nothing in the writings for him to interpret with the exception of one passage which indicated indirect election. But he did arrange for the election of NSAs, for their bylaws to be approved, for them to function as he wanted and so forth, even though there were no texts covering most of this. Are we to take this as bluff? Is he speaking as if he had authority to tell the Baha'is to do this and that, when in reality they would have been entitled to say 'sorry, this is a matter not expressely revealed, so your instructions are not authoritative, and we are going to do it our way'?? I think we can only make sense of this by distinguishing between 'authoritative' and 'authority': the Master gives him unlimited authority in the Faith, but defines a specific function as "the Interpreter [or expounder] of the Word of God", and when the Guardian says that his "interpretation ... is ... authoritative" he is using 'authoritative' as a synonym for 'infallible', or at least in some more narrow and exalted sense than authority in general. Otherwise, how to make sense of his own practice, which clearly was not to limit his authority to interpretation of the Word?? Moreover, he promises that "Neither [the Universal House of Justice or the Guardian] can, nor will ever, infringe upon the sacred and prescribed domain of the other" (The Administrative Order chapter, in 'The Dispensation of Baha'u'llah). But he made a number of decisions which are explicitly in the sphere of the Universal House of Justice. For instance, in Baha'i Administration page 40 he writes that the Local and National Spiritual Assemblies are to be re-elected once a year, at Ridvan, "pending the establishment of the Universal House of Justice" which, when it is established "will have to consider afresh the whole situation, and lay down the principle which shall direct, so long as it deems advisable, the affairs of the Cause." Are we to gloss the previous quote as meaning ["Neither can, nor will ever, infringe upon the sacred and prescribed domain of the other, except perhaps temporarily or in an emergency"]?? It seems to me preferable to consider that the 'sacred and prescribed domain', (and the 'spheres' of these two institutions), refer to areas - kinds of activities actually - in which they may claim the mantle of infallibility, rather than to areas in which they can expect obedience. The latter, as the example of the election cycle shows, could intersect, while the former, according to Shoghi Effendi, are mutually exclusive. So I think there are good reasons for thinking that the authority of the Guardian was much broader than his authoritativeness (which I gloss as equivalent to infallibility). Does the same apply to the Universal House of Justice? Symmetry seems to suggest it, but I can't prove it. One could say that every decision of the Universal House of Justice is by definition legislation on matters not explicitly revealed and so is infallible - except in so far as implicit interpretations of matters which are explicitly revealed are not themselves either binding or authoritative, while the decisions containing these interpretations are binding and authoritative. One could also define legislation narrowly as an act of formal law-making, in which case the Universal House of Justice very seldom legislates (and is seldom assuming the mantle of infallibility), yet the Will and Testament gives it the right to be obeyed anyway. Sorry if this is a little confused. I feel rather as if I trying to see my own nose, because I've lived with these distinctions as basic to the covenant for so long I can't imagine how they appear to someone encountering them for the first time. How about some examples showing how it all looks if you assume that infallibility and authority are coterminous? By the way, I have assumed above that when you say: "I have only recently understood that some view the authority of the House as having a wider scope than *the guidance* the House receives." 'the guidance' refers to infallibility. They are not in fact identical, in as much as anyone may have guidance (but not be assured of having it). Our LSAs and NSAs might function differently if they sought guidance more often... [But I hasten to add that guidance may not be 'the right answer': I think of it more normally as the sense that God is with us: leads to a combination of assurance and extreme humility and carefulness, since 'God with us' might be 'God keeping an eye on us' :-)] Sen ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Sen McGlinn ph: 31-43-216854 Andre Severinweg 47 email: Sen.McGlinn@RL.RuLimburg.NL 6214 PL Maastricht, the Netherlands *** When, however, thou dost contemplate the innermost essence of things, and the individuality of each, thou wilt behold the signs of thy Lord's mercy . . ." ------------------------------------------------------------------------ =END= From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 21:51:21 +0100 (MET) Subject: maturity, collective centre, HOW To: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Mark, I guess I've lost the point of the thread, since you say we were talking about being 'more infallible', and I don't remember that. Drat! Guess I'll have to bow out of this one. I'm surprised that you consider the Universal House of Justice as the collective centre. Would you have a reference or reasoning for that? `Abdu'l-Baha uses the term to describe the Manifestation or religion or divine teachings as a collective centre for humanity, and specifically as a term for the House of Worship, as the symbol of the Manifestation and as the place which literally unites people: The purport of this is that the church is a collective center. Temples are symbols of the reality and divinity of God - the collective center of mankind. Consider how within a temple every race and people is seen and represented ... Therefore, it is evident that the church is a collective center for mankind. For this reason there have been churches and temples in all the divine religions; but the real Collective Centers are the Manifestations of God, of Whom the church or temple is a symbol and expression ... (Promulgation of Universal Peace, page 163) Among the institutes of the Holy Books is that of the foundation of places of worship ... in order that humanity might find a place of meeting, and this is to be conducive to unity and fellowship among them. The real temple is the very Word of God; for to it all humanity must turn, and it is the center of unity for all mankind. It is the collective center, the cause of accord and communion of hearts, the sign of the solidarity of the human race, the source of eternal life. Temples are the symbols of the divine uniting force ... (Promulgation of Universal Peace, page 65) ... the Mashriqu'l-Adhkar ... forgeth bonds of unity from heart to heart; it is a collective centre for men's souls. (Selections from the Writings of `Abdu'l-Baha, p. 95) [and check out what `Abdu'l- Baha goes on to say about the effect of a House of Worship here!] I don't recall the term 'collective centre' being used of the House of Justice, which seems rather to be one of the peripheral bodies which circle around the House of Worship, but Shoghi Effendi might apply the term to the House of Justice somewhere: there's a memory niggling in the back of my mind but I can't place it. Any ideas? And more ... WHY are Wilmette and Hofheim and Kampala (to name 3 Houses of Worship with Talismanians in their metaphorical shadows) not the most radiant thriving growing commmunities? (Or are they?) Something presumably to do with 1) building the house of worship first in our hearts, and placing it at the centre of our family and community life 2) building it locally, by and for the users 3) giving permission for all sorts of liturgical experimentation (hidden words rap; siya'l-chal blues; dance of the seven valleys; dervishal whirling; kick back the chairs and all link arms and Haya!) We should have a long look at this WHILE (not before :-)) getting the building underway. And BTW: one of the important building-stones of the House of Worship would be Gleanings II: mystical and poetic writings of Baha'u'llah. Go for it. Sen ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Sen McGlinn ph: 31-43-216854 Andre Severinweg 47 email: Sen.McGlinn@RL.RuLimburg.NL 6214 PL Maastricht, the Netherlands *** When, however, thou dost contemplate the innermost essence of things, and the individuality of each, thou wilt behold the signs of thy Lord's mercy . . ." ------------------------------------------------------------------------ =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 13:51:50 -0800 From: email@example.com (DEREK COCKSHUT ) Subject: RE , Manifestations was Iranian bashing . To: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Talismanians In the discussion that devolved into Iranian bashing . I felt points that Richard Logan made that needed answering were ignored . Did Baha'u'llah always know he was a Manifestation of God . Well the answer to that is a little complex . In the World of the Manifestation which is pre- existent yes He did . In the human context not until the Siyyih-Chal . However there were those who accepted Baha'u'llah as 'He whom God shall make manifest ' in Iraq in 1851 . The Bab clearly as a Higher Prophet knew the unawakened station of Baha'u'llah . So was He aware spiritually prior to the Wondrous Maiden , it could very well be but not in a manner that could be understood as intellectual awareness which does appear to start in the Black Pit in 1852 . The Station of Baha'u'llah , on one level all Manifestations are the same . Yet the actually position and Station of Baha'u'llah is that of : ' the Supreme Manifestation of God .. and all others are servants unto Him and do his bidding ' . Baha'u'llah did not bring another revelation to Mankind He has brought a new cycle or type of Religion . His dispensation which forms part of the new cycle will last for 1000 plus years . All of the religions of the previous cycle were merely preludes to this time . According to our Scriptures the power of the previous cycle , the Adamic cycle , was the Holy Spirit . The power of the new cycle , the Baha'i Cycle , is the Most Great Spirit . The Holy Spirit is only one letter of the Most Great Spirit . The Hadith that the Bab fulfilled says that Knowledge is 27 letters . Using that as a standard the heavenly power released to the world of Man by Baha'u'llah is 27 times greater than before . So what we are part of : is the unfoldment of something radically different in the arena of religion . Baha'u'llah stated that His revelation was revealed in 9 styles or grades < The Bab said His was revealed in 5 styles or grades > . As all religions prior to the Bab had only revealed in total 2 letters of knowledge of the Adamic cycle it is difficult to imagine that the 5 styles or grades the Bab used had been employed previously . The Blessed Beauty states there are 72 meanings for every verse that He revealed . Taking the Kitab-i-Aqdas as an example of a Book that all 9 styles or grades are used the potential in terms of meanings from that one small book alone is almost beyond measurement . For each style can have the eight other styles as secondary levels , each of which are also subject to 72 meanings . You end up with a cubic center of the Faith that radiates a limitless ocean to us all . The Kitab-i-Aqdas has 194 verses including Ishraqat in its primary section . One estimate is that Baha'u'llah revealed in excess of 3 million verses , that takes the understanding of limits out of ones imagination or ability to comprehend . Small wonder Baha'u'llah is the Supreme Manifestation of God , the One who spoke with Moses . I mention this because as Baha'is in our desire to show unity with other religions we frequent miss the point that the Cause of Baha'u'llah is not a replay of before or a simple restatement of eternal truths . I am disturbed that I see individuals attempting to devalue the station of Quddus on the basis of what can only be thought of as ignorance . Ahang is right in all that he has posted on Quddus . When Quddus was at Shaykh Tabarsi as He entered He leaned against the shrine and uttered these words ," The Baqiyyatu'llah will be best for you if ye are those who believe " . That fulfilled the prophecy that is attributed direct to Muhammad " And when the Mihdi is made manifest , He shall lean his back against the Ka'bih and shall address to the three hundred and thirteen followers who have grouped around Him , these words ... " Quddus occupies a unique station in Religion just as the Master does .We need to be open- minded to discover the meaning and significance of His Station as well as Abdu'l-Baha's . On another matter as we have brought up the Station of Baha'u'llah . Juan in a posting on the 'Ode to the Dove ' on Dec 20th stated that verse 17 seems to him an early claim to supernatural knowledge . I would point out that from 1852 Baha'u'llah was in full awareness of His role and knowledge . The development of a Religion is conditioned more on the capacity of those who accept rather than the nature and ability of the Founder . If the Word of God is uncreated and a Manifestation has the call on all that has been and is to come . Then it follows there is no need to claim Supernatural Knowledge . It is so that the Knowledge is there and available . Kindest Regards Derek Cockshut =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 15:56:09 -0600 (CST) Subject: Misunderstandings From: "Richard C. Logan" To: "Talisman" Dear Talismanians, I feel it is important, now, that the dust has settled a little, to = make an attempt at clarifying the remarks I made in a response to Mr. = Robert Johnson. I want to try and make certain there be no lingering = doubts about my sincerity, or cognisance of the integrity, with = regard to my fellow Baha'is who happen to be Iranian by birth and = cultural circumstance, but who are human first. Did Baha'u'llah not = say, "The Earth is but one country and Mankind its citizens"? I = would like to ask--How could anyone conceive that the mere = characterization of something as "Iranian" amounts to an insult. It = might be an earnest compliment. In the light of this, I would like to further preface my remarks by = saying that I am becoming aware of tension between Americans and = Persians that I little suspected previous to writing that stigmatized = message. I became a Baha'i in El Cerrito, California (that precious = =B3Little Hill=B2) near Berkeley. There were Persians in my = community and I had tremendous admiration for them. At first I was = the only youth! One Parsi Baha'i, in particular, used to make the = argument that there was no such thing as Western Music or Western = Philosophy and other Persians in the room politely agreed. I didn't = puff up and say this an insult to all westerners. I laughed, and = appreciated the marvelous way he presented the discussion. I had = only a singular delight in the brilliance and persuasiveness of his = misguided notion. Am I insulting him now by calling his idea = misguided? Nothing could be further from the truth. I'm just saying = I'm not required to agree. I don't believe he would think that was = an insult either. Because we had the discussion many times and he is = one of the dearest and most beautiful friends I have ever had. At = another time it was brought to my attention that one cannot pray = directly to God. An explanation was given to me and I was persuaded = of this concept. As soon as I argued this position at a fireside = later in another community I got reported to my assembly. I was = called before that August Body and a Persian believer laughingly = compared me to the "Sorcerer's Apprentice" who let = the about the station of Quddus, the Omniscience of Baha'u'llah, when He = knew His Mission and His station were discussed at certain deepenings = in Berkeley and other places. I was told point blank that there were = topics known in the East to be true but might cause unease in the = west, so, they were not often discussed. Particularly, after what = had happen to me over the praying issue. During my pilgrimage one = night, within the precincts of the Pilgrim House, I brought up the = question of praying to God to, Hand of the Cause of God, Ali Akbar = Furutan. In full view of all the pilgrims there, he literally = ridiculed the notion that one could pray directly to God, and that we = pray to Baha'u'llah instead. All the westerners that I talked to = took it as extremely informative and thanked me for asking the = question. It seems that the idea went down much better when the = source was a Hand of the Cause. Dear Talismanians: What do you think would happen If someone went = about to Baha'i meetings espousing the idea that Quddus was equal to = Baha'u'llah and the Bab? Probably worse than getting reported to = their Assembly I imagine! NOW, STAY WITH ME! I'm open on this = question but I think the reaction of average western believers would = be catastrophic. STAY WITH ME NOW! I'm not saying anyone here = espoused that idea. I'm saying that from the reaction of Robert = Johnson we can all see that the wrong idea on this issue is bound to = be had. Thus, the circumspect behavior concerning the discussion of = these ideas. Perhaps Ahang would like to test my theory of = "catastrophic consequences" among his fellow Texas Baha'is? I = believe, if my fellow Baha'is of Iranian extraction, were fair they = would acknowledge a certain caution on some topics in front of those = not well grounded in the subtleties of this Cause. That certainly = was the case back in Berkeley--maybe it was only true for there. If = so I apologize again. Now on to clarifying my Post. 1). When I said, " I believe what you are describing is an "Iranian = Outlook" on the question of Quddus." What I meant was--as far as I = could tell this understanding originates from the Iranian friends. = Not many western Baha'is hold this view. I DID NOT say that such a = view was bad. In fact, Ahang supported the view I expressed in my = initial post to Mr. Johnson and called me "right"(in his most recent = response to Mr. Johnson). Furthermore, he cited the two main points = of my post which were Quddus' station was "unique" and "not = understood". In a larger sense, the meaning of the "Iranian Outlook" = is elucidated in my post to Juan Cole entitled "Unraveling = Mysteries" dated 1/12/96. 2). I pointed out to Robert that "I think your reaction to Ahang is = an example of one of the reasons Iranians don't often talk about = these ideas." In other words, I was scolding Robert for his closed = mindedness but I didn't want to say it so baldly as I have here = (sorry Robert for this overt criticism). 3). I supplied this caveat: " Now lets be cautious here-- I 'm not = saying that Iranians in general believe these things--what I am = saying is it seems there are proponents of certain extra-scriptural = concepts." What could be clearer? This language is very careful and = conditional so as to not leave the wrong impression. In conclusion, I believe if my posts on the question of Quddus are = taken as a whole there should be no room for misunderstanding. I = concede, however, there has been and for that I am heartily sorry. Your Baha'i Brother Richard Richard C. Logan email@example.com Maintain HomePape "The Baha'is of Lubbock" http://rampages.onramp.net/~nineteen/ +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ How manifold are the truths which must remain unuttered until the appointed time is come! Even as it has been said: "Not everything that a man knoweth can be disclosed, nor can everything that he can disclose be regarded as timely, nor can every timely utterance be considered as suited to the capacity of those who hear it." --Gleanings from the writings of Baha'u'llah +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 96 15:53:02 From: "Stockman, Robert" To: firstname.lastname@example.org, Saman Ahmadi Subject: Re: Superbowl predictions When is the superbowl, anyway? Why should I care? Who's playing (other than two football teams), and why should I care about that either? --Rob ______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________ Subject: Superbowl predictions Author: Saman Ahmadi at INTERNET Date: 1/13/96 1:31 PM Dear Everyone, I will be rooting for the Houston Oilers. For those dealing in reality: Packers 33 Colts 13 Cowboys 27 Steelers 6 And Packers 17 Colts 3 For proud Iranians: Perspolis 3 TAj 1 (My favorite player was CalAni, #7) take care, sAmAn P.S. Austrialian Rules Football => Talisman with a ball ;-) =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 16:43:05 -0600 (CST) Subject: Re: Spheres of conferred infallibility From: "Richard C. Logan" To: , "Talisman" Tony wrote: >> It seems to me quite clear that the spheres of the Guardian's authority and >> infallibility are not identical. First of all, in the letters that are now >> familiar to all--but which can be reposted, if Juan will be so kind, the >> Guardian very strictly limits the areas of his infallibility to >> interpretation of the text and protection of the Cause. And even here >> infallibility seems to mean only that he must be strictly obeyed by the >> believers. Tony I must say, and please forgive me, your thinking on this matter is decidedly Cartesian and outmoded. By saying these things you completely ignore the aspect of the mystical bond connecting the Bab and Baha'u'llah with the Guardian an the House as it relates to infallibility. Gracious God! Why does one feel the need to pedestrianize such a sublime subject? It has been bandied about here and on the other Newsgroups that the infallibility of the Guardian and the House is "conditional". That their decisions are based on available knowledge. If that's true, then, they are no better than any other governing body or person for that matter. They've merely got the authority, like your school principle, or something. How utterly unsophisticated! This matter of infallibility as described by the Guardian could be characterized, in my humble judgment, as "delimited" that is within certain boundaries, but certainly not as "conditional", unless one drains it completely of mystical content. The operative word here is "Guidance". The members of the House may not even be aware of how they reached a decision. They needn't comprehend how this guidance has taken place or even be aware that it has. Wrong as to the facts decisions (those decisions that appear to be lacking in wisdom) viewed from a higher angle can be the perfect decision as a part of Baha'u'llah's overall plan. This whole notion of conditionality seems an oversimplification to me. Richard Richard C. Logan email@example.com Maintain HomePape "The Baha'is of Lubbock" http://rampages.onramp.net/~nineteen/ +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ How manifold are the truths which must remain unuttered until the appointed time is come! Even as it has been said: "Not everything that a man knoweth can be disclosed, nor can everything that he can disclose be regarded as timely, nor can every timely utterance be considered as suited to the capacity of those who hear it." --Gleanings from the writings of Baha'u'llah +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 96 16:30:01 -0500 From: "Ahang Rabbani" To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: New Baha'i Studies list [This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII] My first posting of the following note bounced but since it was also copies to Mark Foster he has now replied privately and should he choose, he can post his comments for all. ahang. ======================================================= Dear Mark, I've just signed up for the new list, though I will continue to be active on Talisman (my apologies to those who where hoping otherwise! ;-} Your list rules for the new Baha'i Studies list echoes the very ones I proposed for Talisman last February (after I witnessed some low pH institutions-bashing) and veteran Talismanians recall that it flew like a ton of brick! In fact after the discussion and in light of experience, in all fairness, I admit that my proposed rules won't work for Talisman and I'm somewhat skeptical that they will for the new list, but that's obviously your call. Hope you don't mind if we discuss these rules a bit -- although I recognize that you need no such discussion as its *your* list. > 1. To practice the principle of Baha'i consultation. Arguing, > in a negative way, is strongly discouraged. (Although, arguing, > in the sense of presenting reasoned arguments, is desirable.) > Postings should focus on issues and topics - not on > personalities. No flaming (attacking others), gossip, > backbiting, slander, or libel is allowed. And name-calling > (conservative, liberal, fundamentalist, etc.) in any form is > not permitted. We need to remind ourselves that it is through > the clash of differing opinons, not of conflicting > personalities, that we discover truth. Enforcing some of this is easy, e.g., when someone calls someone else "fundamentalist Baha'i", presumably you will write back privately and warn them and then after repeat offense remove them from list. But what about "arguing in a negative way"? Who is the judge of that? Will you be imposing your value system and your notion of what's positive and what negative on others? (Am I arguing "negatively" at the present with you?? What is a negative argumentation anyway?) > 2. Not to criticize the institutions of the Baha'i Faith or > their policies. This is not a "griping" list. Postings should > be positive. How do you define criticism of the institutions? (Now remember I have twice left Talisman solely because of the severe criticism of the institutions so I'm on your side on this one...) But how is this going to be judged on on-going basis? Let me give you an example. I just received a email from someone who strongly counseled me *not* to send the letter about translation of Writings to Haifa because the House just had a conference with the Hands and the Counselors and knew everything! This person then suggested this letter is, therefore, undue criticism of the House. Now, I am sharing this with you only to illustrate that what one person considers to be service to the House another believer from a different perspective views as criticism! So, I ask, how would you define "criticism" and how would you police against it? > 3. Not to question the infallibility of the Central Figures of > the Baha'i Faith, the Guardianship, or the Universal House of > Justice. Certainly, *reverent* attempts to understand the > nature of infallibility are permitted. This is precisely one the the rules that I proposed last Feb and just about the entire Talisman (including the conservative wing ) rejected it because there is no definition for infallibility! So, will you be forcing *your* notion of infallibility on the rest of us? And how does one judge or measure "reverance"? Maybe you can share examples of the right and the wrong way of discussing infallibility? > 6. The list is open and unmoderated. However, all posters > (Baha'is, members of other faiths, or those of no particular > faith) are expected to abide by these rules and to agree to the > list objectives. How do you realistically expect a non-Baha'i (friendly to the Faith or otherwise) to obey these rules including "no criticism" or "obedience to infallibility", etc., when the Baha'is themselves are having problem with them? Again, Mark, I want to emphasize that I personally am delighted with the new list and I look forward to discussions there (though I have not received any postings) but I like to have some clarification up front as to how you intend to enforce these rules. much love and admiration, ahang. =END= From: "QUANTA DAWNLIGHT" To: email@example.com Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 18:23:26 EST Subject: Re: Universal House of Justice Letter on Homosexuality Dear Bill, A superb analysis with simple clarification. We are the victims of the societal conditions who want to change the system to suit individual's need for accepting the status quo within the self. Isn't exactly what goes on in the larger picture? So, how are we going to change the world, when we follow its path of maze where many get lost and unable to exit it? How, are we then to enter the "narrow and straight path"? (Qur'an) ser'ah-tal, mustaqim. I believe that those organizations in our society which change the ancient principles may have some other motives in mind. Power and dollar which spinns the heads 'round and we all fall down. In the long run, as you said things be clear as the noon sun. We are living in testing times, indeed!! lovingly, quanta =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 16:44:58 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: "Stockman, Robert" Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org, Saman Ahmadi Subject: Re: Superbowl predictions > > When is the superbowl, anyway? Why should I care? Who's playing > (other than two football teams), and why should I care about that > either? > > --Rob > Robert jan, this is a big deal for us football fans because one of two teams who hasn't won the SB in a very llloooonnnnggg time is set to win this year and humble those upstart Dallas Cowboys. My vote goes to the Stealers -- sorry Terry jan, now you have both Jim & myself to deal with. Can you believe it, folks, I'm the only lone Albuquerquean who's rooting for a team other than Dallas -- you won't be finding me in any sports bar here in the next week or so; they'd lynch me by my tails ;-) Nima =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 96 08:22 PST To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Burl Barer) Subject: JEWS A recent post mentioned some Baha'is stating mentioning Jews being punished for rejecting Christ but once they become Baha'is..etc etc Maybe this is a distortion of the following quote from Mirza Abul-Fadl: "They [Jews] will never be awakened and restored to their glory and honor except by acknowledging the truth of Christ under the banner of the Covenant of our Lord, El-Abha, and turning unto the Day-Spring of the Lights of His Testament." Restored to glory and honor is interesting. If they became Baha'is, how could they be restored to their glory and honor? Would they now be Baha'is and not, collectively, Jews? Or would they be Jews still? Ask a Baha'i if they want the Jews to become Baha'is and they will certainly say YES. But ask a Baha'i if they want the Jews to cease existing, and the answer will be far different. This is a complex question. Do we want the diverse tribes of native peoples to become Baha'is? Do we want the diverse tribes of native peoples to cease "acting" "living" "worshipping" as native peoples and instead act, live and worship in exact manner to non-native peoples? or vice-versa? I think it may be significant that when a noted Rabbi traveled to attain the presence of Baha'u'llah, the Blessed Beauty instructed the friends to make sure the Rabbi, who had embraced the Faith, knew where to find the Kosher market. Some of the friends were suprised at this, as keeping Jewish dietary laws was no longer a requirement. But, as Baha'u'llah reminded the other Baha'is, it was the Rabbi's preference. There is no Divine Law in the Baha'i faith prohibiting it. That which is not prohibited is allowed, especially if it is something by which one santifies life. thoughts? Burl ******************************************************* Order MAN OVERBOARD, the new book by Burl Barer today! ******************************************************* =END= From: Don_R._Calkins@commonlink.com (Don R. Calkins) To: email@example.com Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: RE , Manifestations was Iranian bashing . > Did Baha'u'llah always know he was a Manifestation > of God . Well the answer to that is a little complex . > In the World of the Manifestation which is pre- > existent yes He did . In the human context not until > the Siyyih-Chal . I assumed that He knew as a human that He was *going to be* a Manifestation, but did not have the characteristics of one until the Siyyih-Chal. Don C He who believes himself spiritual proves he is not - The Cloud of Unknowing =END= Date: Sun, 14 Jan 1996 14:02:47 +1300 (NZDT) To: "Richard C. Logan" , "Talisman" From: email@example.com (Robert Johnston) Subject: Re: Misunderstandings: deep blue devil Dear Richard, Escaping from accusations of anti-Persianism you dealt me a double-death blow, for which I forgive you, because I am in a tolerant mood, and -- as everyone (ask Nima) knows -- am an all-round nice guy... Blow One: >I believe, if my fellow Baha'is of Iranian extraction, were fair they >would acknowledge a certain caution on some topics in front of those not >well grounded in the subtleties of this Cause. Blow two: > In other words, I was scolding Robert for his closed mindedness but I >didn't want to say it so baldly as I have here (sorry Robert for this >overt criticism). My almost final word on this matter is this. Both you and Ahang state that the station of Quddus cannot be known. Is it unsubtle and closed minded to ask that you both be consistent, and not suggest/state that his station is identical to that of the Bab and Baha'u'llah -- that is, Manifestation of God endowed with constancy? Is it possible that you may wish to substitute simplicity and veracity for unsubtlety and narrowness? Robert. =END= From: "Mark A. Foster" Subject: collective centers To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 19:05:06 -0600 (CST) To: email@example.com Hi, Sen - You wrote: S>I guess I've lost the point of the thread, since you say we S>were talking about being 'more infallible', and I don't S>remember that. Drat! Guess I'll have to bow out of this one. I went back and reread my message, and I agree that my use of the term "more infallible" was unclear. What I meant was that, at least as I see it, the House of Justice could be considered as maturing (in the sense that the entire administrative order will mature and ripen), but that I didn't think that maturity should be equated with unconditional truthfullness or infallibility. That is to say, I have not seen any evidence that the House could become *more infallible* - which, to me, would not only be poor grammar , but would be a contradiction in terms. That is what I intended to write. S>I'm surprised that you consider the Universal House of S>Justice as the collective centre. I have a compilation which I put together on this topic at least twenty years ago! I was using the term "collective center" in the general sense of a focal point. See _Tablets of the Divine Plan_, pp.24 and 27. For example: In the contingent world, there are many collective centers which are conducive to association and unity between the children of men. For example, patriotism is a collective center; nationalism is a collective center; identity of interests is a collective center; political alliance is a collective center; the union of ideals is a collective center, and *the prosperity of the* *world is dependent on the organization and* *promotion of the collective centers*. [emphasis mine] - `Abdu'l-Baha, in _Tablets of the Divine Plan_ (the edition I have here), p.24 Re: why these Houses of Worship are not in thriving communities. I suspect that the blessings of such places are often relative to how we respond to them. IOW, they are conditional, not absolute. Warm greetings to you, Mark * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *Mark A. Foster, Ph.D., Sociologist of Religion (Structuralist) * *Sociology, JCCC, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, KS 66210-1299 U.S.A. * *Past President (1995), Kansas Sociological Society * *Director, Institute for Integral Wisdom [sm] Owner, Baha'i Studies List * *Academic Director (and Kansas Dir.), Foundation for the Science of Reality * *Board of Directors (and Talent), Tektite, Ltd. (Religion Films Production) * *Phones: 913/469-8500, ext.3376 (Office) and 913/768-4244 (Home) * *Fax: 913/469-4409 Science of Reality BBS: 913/768-1113 (8-N-1; 14.4 kbps) * *Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com (List Co-Moderator) * * 72642,3105 (Staff, Three CompuServe Religion Fora) UWMG94A (Prodigy)* * Realityman (America Online Ethics and Religion Forum Remote Staff) * *Home Pages: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/Science_of_Reality * * http://home.aol.com/Realityman (Note: The Web is Case-Sensitive)* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ___ * UniQWK #2141* The manifested Unity of God emanates in His creation's diversity =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 19:19:40 -0600 From: "Mark A. Foster" To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Suggestions for Improvement Ahang - Okay. Rather than repost my note to you, I am sending the list information into which I have incorporated many of your useful suggestions. Mark P.S. As was pointed out to me in a private email this morning, the Baha'i Studies list is the second one to spin off from Talisman. (Juan beat me to it .) ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Baha'i Studies List Information Subscriptions/Unsubscriptions: Both of these are automatically handled by a majordomo listserver. x To subscribe (or unsubscribe), send the following command - subscribe (or substitute unsubscribe) bahai-st end To - firstname.lastname@example.org These commands will *not* work if sent to the distribution address (email@example.com). All subscribe/unsubscribe commands must be sent from the account that you wish to subscribe (or unsubscribe) from. Posting Messages: To post a message to the Baha'i Studies list, send it to - firstname.lastname@example.org List Purposes: The fundamental purpose of the Baha'i Studies list is the consultative investigation of truth/reality, using the Baha'i Teachings as its spiritual foundation. This list is a professional research activity of its owner, Mark A. Foster, Ph.D., who is on the sociology faculty of Johnson County Community College. We are using the computer resources of that college. List Objectives: 1. To act as a forum where people of diverse backgrounds can contribute to the knowledge base of our virtual moral community. The Baha'i metaphysic of unity in diversity, as viewed by the list owner, teaches us how truth results from implementing the spiritual technology of Baha'i consultation. 2. To become, potentially, an online institute, a "think tank" (an information resource center) for the Baha'i community, and a spiritual colloquium - a place where, hopefully, we can cooperatively search for answers to specific questions and where the Baha'i Teachings can be applied to concrete situations. 3. To have ongoing threads (continuous email discussions) on a variety of topics related to Baha'i studies, deepening, and Baha'i scholarship. The term "Baha'i scholarship" is used in a general sense to include the scholarly activities of, potentially, all Baha'is and not *only* academic Baha'i scholarship (i.e., the academic application of the Baha'i Teachings to the sciences - physical, biological, behavioral, and social, the humanities, etc.). List Rules: 1. To practice the principle of Baha'i consultation. Arguing, in a negative way, is strongly discouraged. (Although, arguing, in the sense of presenting reasoned arguments, is desirable.) To be more specific, postings should focus on Baha'i studies topics - not on personalities. Consequently, no flaming (attacking others), gossip, backbiting, slander, or libel will be tolerated. And name-calling (conservative, liberal, fundamentalist, fascist, etc.) in any form is not permitted. The list owner reminds list participants that a unity in the clash of differing opinons, and not of conflicting personalities, is the means to discover truth. 2. Not to post messages opposing, or questioning, the actions, policies, or members of a Baha'i institution. Messages stating that a particular administrative decision should be changed, or of trying to find a way to get it reconsidered, are not appropriate on this list. Likewise, discussions of appeals, petitions, suggestions, etc. to administrative bodies, regardless of their nature and possible merit, are contrary to list rules. 3. Not to argue why the Central Figures, the Guardian, or the House of Justice may not be infallible in a particular area(s). The list owner is not *necessarily* saying that such questions have no merit, only that he does not wish to see the Baha'i Studies list get bogged down with this issue. Of course, attempts to better understand the nature of truth or infallibility are acceptable. On the other hand, the list owner does not want people debating the merits of a particular decision on the grounds that it does not fall into a Personage's or an institution's domain of infallibility. 4. To avoid *extensive* quoting from the messages of others. Please quote only as much as is *reasonably necessary* to respond to what someone has written. 5. To keep messages to the point. Chatty messages, small talk, simple "thank you" or "I agree" postings without additional substance, etc. are contrary to the objectives of the list. 6. Not to use subject headings which contain the names of persons (other than the Prophets of God, `Abdu'l-Baha, and Shoghi Effendi). Finally, the list is open and unmoderated. However, all posters (Baha'is, members of other faiths, or those of no particular faith) are expected to abide by these rules and to agree to follow the list objectives. While the list owner is a tolerant person , he reserves the right to remove people from the list who, in his view, after having been cautioned through private email, consistently violate list rules and make our experiences, in this little corner of cyberspace, less than satisfactory. Mark A. Foster, Ph.D., Baha'i Studies List Owner email@example.com =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 96 20:10:41 EWT From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu Subject: a novel situation To: firstname.lastname@example.org This morning I went out to get a prescription filled and didn't return home for four hours. John asked where I'd been. I told him that my hormones had taken over when I saw the "sale" signs in the mall. This evening I tuned into Talisman and saw that the same thing had happened to a whole bunch of other people! Only, the hormones were different and no one went shopping. Instead, Talisman's models of maleness are talking football! I know, Juan, this is all socially conditioned. If I had been raised "properly" I would love football too. I don't know whether to contest you on this issue or not, Juan. I would love to argue that Stephen Jay Gould who is a wonderful writer and scientist is as affected by his political views as anyone I know of. However, we are now faced with this novel situation of you and Robert being on the same side of the fence, while you and I are - well, fencing. Perhaps I should leave well enough alone and let peace reign for awhile. To those of you who are new to Talisman, welcome. You should know that Derek and Burl are really just fictitious characters. They don't really exist. Consequently, everything that is posted over their names is just imaginary. I would ignore it all, if I were you. Linda =END= Date: Sun, 14 Jan 1996 14:23:45 +1300 (NZDT) To: Robert Parry , Alethinos@aol.com From: email@example.com (Robert Johnston) Subject: Re: Packer schmacker Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Robert Parry wrote: >All you American Football fanatics! Haven`t you ever seen or heard how >the Welsh play Rugby Union? Now that`s an experience!!! Huh!!!!??? Once upon a time!!! I mean: is Jonah Lomu from Cardiff or South Auckland? Robert. =END= From: Member1700@aol.com Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 20:25:00 -0500 To: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: Spheres of conferred infallibility Richard: With regard to the decisions of the House of Justice being conditioned on information they receive, I don't think that is an issue which is any longer subject to serious debate. There is a letter from the House of Justice itself, which has been posted and reposted on Talisman a number of times, in which the House explicitly states that it is not omniscient as a body, that it must receive information from the friends, and that it reserves the right (as did the Guardiand) to revise previous decisions on the basis of new information. So, it would seem to me that even the House of Justice would not subscribe to the arguments that you are making about the independence of their decisions from the information they receive. (Besides those of us who have had occasion to actually work with the House of Justice on some matter or another have active experience in seeing this principle at work.) Warmest, Tony =END= From: email@example.com Date: Sun, 14 Jan 96 00:52:00 UTC 0000 To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: left out-- I think Hi gang, Either GEnie mail has been on the fritz for a couple of days or else y'all have been strangely silent... I received no mail yesterday (Friday) and nothing for most of today either (my service started up again with Derek's "MENSA without the N part 3" so at least I didn't miss anything _really_ important ). If anybody feels like forwarding whatever good stuff I might have missed, I'd really appreciate it. Thanks, Leigh =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 17:22:44 -0800 From: email@example.com (DEREK COCKSHUT ) Subject: Bosch Academy Students Notes Economics ,Large File To: firstname.lastname@example.org.Dear.Talismanians I have had to braek the file up into separate parts . please remember these are a studnts notes there was no Lecture notes I personally never use them for classes. Kindest regards Derek Cockshut I will post Islam and the Covenant next if this goes through . Message: 994 To: Nazaninz@aol.com, email@example.com, KWha@aol.com, EWDixon@aol.com, From: ScottP2366@aol.com Subject: Bosch notes Date: Sun, 31 Dec 1995 16:22:31 -0500 --PART.BOUNDARY.0.15913.mail04.mail.aol.com.820444950 Content-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Content-type: text/plain Dear friends, I have been informed that it is much better to send you an ASCII version of the file. Here it is. Scott --PART.BOUNDARY.0.15913.mail04.mail.aol.com.820444950 Content-ID: <email@example.com> Content-type: text/plain; name="BOSCH95.ASC" Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable Notes from Advanced Academy, Bosch Baha'i School, Dec. 23, 1995 to Jan. 1, 1996 = Baha'i Economics: Farhad Sabetan, Dec. 23, 24, 30 and 31, 1995 =0D Introduction (Dec. 23 A. M.) We often hear the phrase "spiritual solution to the economic problem= =2E" It is however, not discussed very much, and he has not actually located the source of this q= uote. As a template for the course, consider four points: = What is economics? = What is the economic problem? = What is the solution? = What is the spiritual solution? = Under 1. and 2., we will discuss the concepts of consumption, produ= ction, and distribution of wealth, laissez faire, supply and demand and the problem of scarcity, = i. e., how to allocate limited resources to satisfy unlimited wants. One thing Farhad shared wa= s that a study has shown that economics graduate students were by far more selfish, more greedy, e= tc., implying that education in economics is contributing to the problem! The rest of the first morning was devoted to a discussion of people'= s questions on various topics. In response to one, certain principles of Baha'i economics were = enumerated: The Guardian in Call to the Nations has said that markets will = be regulated, somewhere in between free and centralized. (Note: also on p. 2= 04 of World Order of Baha'u'llah.) The solution to the scarcity problem will not just be a matter = of technique, nor just spiritual education. It will require both, with education as a= moderating factor to direct the use of techniques. = Huququ' llah is a mechanism to take us from the current society= to Baha'i economy of promoting spiritual development. = Progressive taxation. = Work as worship. Other questions/issues: Derek Cockshut: LSAs will have to begin to care for Baha'i poor, wh= ich means we will have to begin to assess needs. If we don't do it, we become a religion o= f the privileged. The competition encouraged in the Faith, e. g., "vie with each other= in service," is for unlimited resources (world's population), not a fixed piece of pie. 'Abd= u'l-Baha stresses cooperation. Resource allocation will be accomplished better by cooperat= ion. = What is value? (nationalism vs. internationalism) NAFTA, EEU, GATT= are great according to international trade theory, but all values need to be open, = e. g., in NAFTA there is some exchange of goods and services but no exchange of labor. NAFTA was = motivated by politics as a hedge against EEC's power. EEC evolved and developed over = about 45 years. = NAFTA: very short development. Rushed ahead without lots of labor consi= derations. One currency: need to have standards of living, e. g., purchasing power and = productivity relatively balance first. Priority of debts over Huququ'llah: God wants you to pay debts to o= thers before Him. Tomorrow: beginning of economics. Adam Smith, laissez faire. Econ= omics should be based on an individual's choices, without coercion. Supply and demand an= d how the Faith addresses these. =0D (Note: he did an economics 101 synopsis in the afternoon of Dec. 23, cov= ering supply and demand, Adam Smith, laissez faire, etc.) =0D The assumptions of the market model vs. a Baha'i perspective (Dec. 24 A. = M.) The beauty of the supply and demand model is that individuals are ac= ting in their own self- interest. Even contributing to organizations such as United Way is satis= fying you. Selfish interest. = Utility maximization by consumers, profit maximization by producers. Ada= m Smith said that purely out of self-interest, the system works for the benefit of society.= Selfishness results in social welfare. (Recall the problem with this training, e. g., the economics gr= ad students being more selfish than others) One reason that the supply and demand model doesn't always work is b= ecause of mutual or group strategies and interactions. If what you do affects me and vice ve= rsa, this system will break down. Examples: Game theory: strategic behavior, e. g. USA vs. USSR first stri= ke. Congestion/traffic: if you reason that you have no effect on t= raffic, and if everyone else reasons this way, then you'll have a traffic problem. Prisoner dilemma. Two are in separate cells, and they can't co= mmunicate. Who should confess? As an economic example of the latter, consider two producers A and B of s= ome product. If you make a profit matrix wherein each producer has a choice between cooperati= ng and competing, you can then analyze this model under different motivations, assuming quality= is held constant. = . Acting selfishly leads to a certain amount of profit for each, = but the sum of the = two's profits is less than if they had cooperated and shared ce= rtain resources and = economies of scale. . Acting under the principle of mutual reciprocity, i. e., I'll d= o whatever you do, there is the former profit level or the increased profit level with c= ooperation. This is one step better than acting selfishly. . A Baha'i would act for the benefit of mankind. "A" would coope= rate regardless of what B does, and vice versa. They each end up with more profit= =2E This model works very well to describe cartels such as OPEC and toda= y's big corporations after the recent merger wave. Derek gave the example of the history of t= he relationship between the Bosch Bookshop and the Distribution Service. It has evolved from a c= ompetitive one to one of cooperation, to the extent that eventually Bosch may become the western o= ffice of the BDS. Value. What is value in a Baha'i system? He thinks: the more sacr= ifice you're willing to make, the more value it has. Sacrifice can be of money, time, energy, pi= oneering, etc. What is implied is that we have a value system, a priority of values, e. g. = God Family Neighbors Self Economic preference theory says people have these value systems. So at t= he core of economics are normative, not objective, principles, such as = Profit maximization Service A Baha'i value system regarding work: Service Wages Farhad believes that long-tem profitability and service go hand in hand. = Derek related that story of how Bosch and the NSA wondered about volunteers at Bosch, thinking they'd ne= ver get anything from them. Now two-thirds of the staff are volunteers. The House has emphasi= zed the year of service. Regarding values, Derek related that the British economy went bad be= cause they thought a business's purpose was to employ people, not make a profit. Farhad: If service to humanity is the motivation, you don't have to= worry about controlling costs. He related how there is no set limit on the expenses you can clai= m if you work at the World Centre. I gave the example of how in Haifa we used to compete to turn in= the smallest weekly expenses Work is worship. From the original Persian, the word for worship al= so means service, obedience and love. This motivation establishes unity on a group level. = Unity is defined as diverse elements contributing to form a whole, e. g., the human body or an LSA. = Farhad remarked that he doesn't see much sense in body-building, in developing individual musc= les, since each finds its purpose only in the whole. Work is worship is the catalyst for unity. If individuals think onl= y like a manager trying to maximize performance, instead of thinking of the totality, they're separa= te form the whole. Cartels are still separate. In a Baha'i system, no class has preference. In a s= ocialist system, labor has preference. In a capitalist system, capital holders have preference. In= a feudal system, the lords have preference. In a Baha'i system, generality is divine, distinction i= s not good. For example women receiving less money than men. A cartel should serve all of humani= ty by integrating with other companies. Multi-national corporations still lack global perspecti= ve because they use cheap labor elsewhere to bring profits home. Chernobyl affected so many outsid= e of the Soviet Union. = The House of Justice has said that everybody should be treated equally (P= rosperity of Humankind). Measuring a person's well-being in terms of money or needs m= et is not a good indicator of their well-being, nor is it just. Their potential energy is= a good one. If they're spending all of their energy to survive, their well-being is not high. E= xamples were given of how much energy is takes to just survive in India and Africa. Derek feels th= at in the future we will all work less so more can work. How do economists measure/justify the state of the world/social prog= rams? By the Prado (?) Principle, which says that any action is justified if it makes at lea= st one person better and doesn't make anyone worse off. The optimal state is when there's no way = I could give some money to some without taking from someone. When we can make moves that d= on't make someone worse, we need to do that because we're in a sub-optimal state. = Today about four-fifths of the world lives at or below "poverty." If I give money to the one-fif= th that is rich, that is a good move according to this principle. This principle ignores the initial con= dition of the world. You could give money to the poor. In practice, however, it always works the = other way. Baha'is say this is not just. What is the energy need of someone? Is it met? If so= me are undernourished and some are overnourished, Prado(?) says OK, Baha'is say not OK. Baha'is sa= y we may have to lower our standard of living in the West in order to raise the standard o= f living in poor countries. = Proposition 187 shows the potential for conflict when we have to sacrific= e. The latter depends on whether we have a closed system. Are resources limited or unlimited? Th= e Club of Rome economists tend to think they're limited. Others says limitations are re= lative. One woman did a study in 1963 that showed that at that time we had the technology to feed= 10 billion. But if rest of world, for example, consumed paper at the rate we do in US, we'd be out o= f paper in a week. Demand side. Material consumption is not an end in itself. Eating,= etc. are purely instrumental for service. Problem is economists don't tell you what to d= o with the money. We consume purely for consumption: big house, nice car. Consumer sovereign= ty. A macroeconomist's worst nightmare in a capitalist society is for consumpti= on to decrease. The government will spend on defense to get an economy going. It will fuel t= he engine of consumption. Baha'is say the object is not consumption. We consume to s= erve, to contribute. = Huququ'llah helps restore the distinction between needs and wants. = The role of global business: just as in the video "The Global Brain= ," we have to develop enough cells first before consciousness-processing can take over. An ana= logy is the Lesser Peace will mean that the body is complete. It will then need spirit. Baha'i view of future. On the supply side, society's capacity will = go way up (see World Order of Baha'u'llah page 204). On the demand side, we will reduce deman= d from the want level to the need level. So in this sense resources will be unlimited. =0D Huququ'llah (Dec. 24, afternoon) Introduction. How we are going to implement the Baha'i principles. = Huquq. is the foundation of the Baha'i economic system. Divine economy will only occur= when individuals are more divine. Huquq is the path, totally non-coercive. First, the attitu= de on which Huquq depends: = joy, acquiescence. From the compilation on Huquq: see excerpts 4, 9 . = Not permissible without this attitude. See index p. 43 re prohibition against solicitation of it= =2E Purely voluntary, conscientious. He's trying to build the concepts of giving with joy, tru= st, personal responsibility. = "Act not treacherously in the matter of Huquq." Designed to develop us s= piritually. It is no more a matter of money than the obligatory prayer is a matter of enunciating cer= tain words. Huquq is to contributions to the Fund as obligatory prayer is to other prayers. It i= s an obligation. A trust. The money is not yours. The foundation of economics is trust. Huquq is to s= trengthen trust. Excerpt 61: 'Abdu'l-Baha on the concept of Huquq. Everything is a system; as w= e move up to higher kingdoms, this cooperative relationship is more important. Second paragr= aph: everything that you see is dependent on relationship. A la Alfred North Whitehead, the core = of reality is not matter but relationships. PBS Millenium series demonstrated that in the West, o= ur objective is things. In the East, you exchange things in order to relate to each other. p. 22: "= This is the basic principle on which the institutionn of Huququ'llah is established." In other words, = Huququ'llah is designed to strengthen relationships. #75, p. 26: "for relief of the poor, the disab= led, the needy, and the orphans. . ." Questions and Answers/Discussion. You are not entitled to know what= is done with the money. It is not yours. This is trust. You cannot earmark it. Examples. For purposes of illustration, let's say you come up with = $100,000 of total wealth. We then deduct three categories of items. . All the expenses associated with the residential house, e. g., = rent, mortgage, household repairs. . All the needful, necessary expenses. What are needs and what a= re wants? 'Abdu'l- Baha speaks of needs, never wants, certainly not unlimited want= s. The debate exists in economics whether we are motivated by needs or wants.= The point is that needs are different for different people. So how can they be t= he basis of theory of consumption? Here a car and a phone are essential. Other coun= tries impossible to get phone service and a car is a luxury. However, water, air, = food are common needs. A way to give meaning to needs is to say "I need x to d= o y." The more justifiable it is to do something, the more it is a need. Anyt= hing that serves our purpose, to know and to worship God, is a need. A lot of $ to = go pioneering becomes a need. Eating to survive is a need. Driving a Merced= es-Benz so as to have a reliable car for travel teaching is a need. Also, there= is no mention of not having wants. It's just that you'd pay Huququ'llah on it. Que= stion: what about IRAs? Answer: Huquq is calculated on wealth that is liquid. = Re jewelry: you decide if it's a need or a want. If the latter, you can have i= t appraised or sell it and pay 19%. Included in needful are tools of the trade such as co= mputers if your profession requires one. You can give in kind but it then just= s takes the Trustees time to sell things. = . Your debts. The banking system did not exist as recent as 1900= =2E In other countries, you would have to borrow money from your friend, whi= ch is shameful. = The capitalistic okay of debts is just another way to push cons= umerism. = Baha'u'llah, top of page 8: "The settlement of debts is a most= important command set forth in the Book." Re a mortgage: don't consider it a de= bt. Let's say you end up with $20,000. You'd pay $3,800. The rest of i= t, the $16,200 is purified and can be done with as desired. The next time you do the calcu= lation, you subtract $20,000 as purified wealth. = One interesting thing is the threshold. An excess of 19 mithqals of= gold, or 2.2 ounces is required before you can give. This is another mechanism for equilibratin= g wealth. In the West, you could have a monthly surplus in excess of this. In other countries, = someone has to wait twenty years before they can pay. Given this, when do we pay it? It is due as = soon as the minimum is reached again. You pay it when it's convenient, which varies with the in= dividual. Baha'u'llah says if you think you can't afford it, you exempt yourself. It is such a matt= er of conscience, a profoundly private matter. House has said that the friends shouldn't inc= onvenience themselves to pay Huququ'llah. Payment by couples is dependent on family unity being m= aintained. = Huququ'llah was not designed to collect money. Let's say you bought some land for $100,000 in 1960, which is so man= y units of gold (Bayan units). If you then sold it 1995 for $150,000, but this is now a = loss in gold units, then you've had a loss! To be absolutely accurate, you should convert to gold= units. You pay only on whole units of 19 mithqals. = In the compilation, it says that Huququ'llah requires maturity. The= profoundly private nature of it demands it. This maturation is the way we are creating the d= ivine agent, the foundation of the divine economy. Baha'u'llah has referred to its mystical aspect i= n saying that a region is protected by their giving of Huququ'llah. And the bounty follows you thr= ough all worlds. =0D Dec. 30 While the financial needs of the Faith are now great, the giving of = Huquq to the West is more to do with the maturity of the friends in the West. William Hatcher= used the term disciplined autonomy to describe Huququ'llah. It brings discipline around the autono= my of individuals. = (Aside: The Hatcher authors, John and William, are brothers. The House h= as asked the latter to move to Russia, and he is on the NSA there now.) The funds may be a prim= ary source of the mental tests the West must face. We are surrounded by these tests of nee= ding to have certain material things to have certain status. (There is a story of a believer = from Qazvin, in response to a general appeal from 'Abdu'l-Baha, sold his only possession, a mule, and s= ent the proceeds to the Master. He sent a tablet back which opened "O Thou the Competitor of 'Ab= du'l-Baha, It is Enough." Derek then told the story of Nora Crossley, who sold her hair f= or the Temple. The Master was so distressed he sent her his ring. The story is related in S= ome Baha'is to Remember, p. 51. Derek said this ring was later given back to the Faith by her gra= ndson, a non-Baha'i. = Farhad told of the first Jewish believer in Teheran, a Mr. Azizi. He had= something like 12 pennies. He gave 11 of them. The Master said because of this you will b= e infinitely wealthy. He owned whole blocks of shops. At least one of the sons, Jalil, went back = after the revolution even though he knew he was on a wanted list. He brought back precious things = to show he wasn't attached to it. He was martyred. Farhad also told of the Iranian govern= ment's setting up of this false "foundation for the weak" where they supposedly put all of the seiz= ed assets of the Baha'is and others. It is the fifth largest fund in the Middle East! And much o= f it is rumored to go to Swiss bank accounts of Rafsenjani, etc. ) The West has this heavy burden= of materialism. Farhad confirmed that in the last 5 years or so, indeed more America= n friends have given more money for Huququ'llah than the Persian friends. = =0D Dec. 31 Today: the internal inconsistencies of the capitalist system, the d= ynamics of competition. Assumptions of competition: 1. Competition is for some limited resource. = 2. It is assumed that the concept of competition is inherent in human nature, that automatically is= within us. The role of the state is to allow this competition to happen naturally. Any kind of regu= lation is a detriment. In a perfectly competitive model, there are certain assumptions: 1.T= here are numerous, infinite producers and consumers so no one has market power. 2.There is = perfect information. = We all know how much the other is going to charge and how much each other= 's utility is. 3. = There is ease of entry and exit into the market. = Given the law of supply and demand for all the supply and demand of = a farmers' market, what would one producer's supply curve look like. How much should I char= ge? I would have to charge the equilibrium price of the total market. How much should I produ= ce? I would produce the quantity of apples at the point where my cost-supply curve intersects= the equilibrium price. At this point, the profit for the last apple I sell would be zero. All the = apples before that would be sold at a profit. I would therefore maximize my profits. Any extra appl= es produced and sold would be done at a loss. Although markets are never like this. There i= s never infinite producers, perfect info., etc. Milton Friedman says the Hong Kong bazaar (street ma= rket) is like this. The opposite of this is the monopoly system. Now the total supply a= nd demand curve is for one producer. What would you charge? You have to compute your margi= nal revenue curve, which is steeper than the former demand curve. Hence, when you do this, = you would produce less because the MR curve would intersect the supply curve at a lower value. = The price you charge at this quantity is higher because you are higher on the demand curve at thi= s quantity. The internal inconsitency is that this competitive motive that is th= e engine of the whole system is something that no one believes in. As a producer, you'd rather= be a monopolist. It is the law that is preventing you from becoming that. The natural tendency is t= o become a monopolist. = This is why so many companies are only concerned about market share. If = the perfectly competitive market is so natural, there should be some tendency to move t= owards it. The opposite is true. This is why you have the waves of mergers all the time. They ar= e trying to become monopolists. The motives are purely selfish, to maximize profit. Because= selfishness promotes monopolies, we had to bring in competition, e. g., the break-up of AT&T. = Hence we never have equilibrium. There is always a tendency to change. Like war instead of = peace. There is always the tension. There is never a natural tendency towards equilibrium. The= system has to be artificially monitored. There is always a tendency for cartels, for coll= usion. The Baha'i system provides a tendency towards equilibrium because we= say forget about the self. Let's educate everyone to be selfless. Let individuals become= their own regulators, their own police, e. g., Huququ'llah. The argument that we need competition for innovation is not really s= ound. The innovators like Edison, Bell, etc. were altruistic. The companies put engineers and= inventors in a separate world where the environment is ideal, called research and development. T= hey completely separate them from the marketing dept. Like Bell Labs vs. Bell Corporation. = Two models that are in-between these. 1. Monopolistic competition. = Soap: many producers of one thing that is very basic. The products are not very dif= ferent. 2. Oligopolies: = few companies come up with ingenious ways of getting around the laws agai= nst collusion. = Schemes that give the outcome of collusion without talking to each other:= I come as one of the few producers of something. I offer you a fixed price for 30 days. If y= ou find a price lower than this, I will match it. I advertise what I'm doing. Producer B does the = exact same thing; all of these same producers do the same thing, like airlines and their prices. The co= nsumer has no choice. It doesn't matter how many laws we impose, it will always tend towards collu= sion Baha'i approach: what is the economic problem, and what is its solu= tion? Let's assume the problem is supply and demand. Shoghi Effendi in Call to the Nations says= we cannot even dimly visualize the future civilization. So we really cannot imagine how it is= going to be. But we do know the spirit of it. The dominant theme in Baha'i literature is an emp= hasis on selflessness. = Why? Because the World Order is a system where self is not important, un= ity is important. Self is emphasized, but only as a part of the whole. Service. Baha'u'llah has l= eft the motive for a basic unit of production, work. Work is service. In that you develop, you act= ualize your potentiality. = 'Abdu'l-Baha, commenting on his station, said that the ocean is great bec= ause it is at the lowest level. Here is the core of the Baha'i economy. To produce, act to serve= humanity. There is nothing against making profit. It just becomes the means, rather than th= e ends. Serving humanity is the ends. We serve humanity the best at the equilibrium price and qua= ntity, which can be estimated rather than obtained out of a competitive process. Up to the 1950s, nature and economics were separate spheres. Envi= ronmental economics then began: there is a cost of pollution. We still are not unified with= nature; we are not one with it. = The balance with nature should be a constraint, not a variable, in our ec= onomics. We don't just pay the inhabitants of the rain forest for cutting it down. Jeanie gave the = example of wetlands banking. = Edison needed some wetlands to build another cooling pond. Because it wa= s an endangered area, they had to go and purchase another wetlands area for protection by paying the= money to a wetlands bank. = Air pollution credits is similar. A new thing now is transfer of develop= ment credits. It is an interplay between willingness to pay and willingness to receive. Economists believ= e there is a compensation curve. What price will convince you to let me cut these trees? Everythi= ng has a price. Non-coercive exchange. This is treated as a variable, not a moral constraint. The Ba= ha'i system does not operate this way. The House of Justice, the owners of the minerals and resources= , will not be lobbied. There will probably be a team of ecologists to identify the equilibrium of the = Earth. We may be able to keep, for example, the number of trees constant by planting programs. The cons= ciousness of the value of nature and the organic unity of man with nature will be there. Jeanie ta= lked about balancing the environmental and development needs as being a constant need. What is development? What is prosperity? This is the theme he was = developing in the paper presented at ABS, an extension of the economics portion of the Prosperity= of Humankind. It has meant industrialization a la that which occurred in the industrial revolu= tion. This was the major impetus in the Soviet Union. They felt the only way to become a superpow= er was to develop industrially. In certain areas like this where there isn't a lot of fert= ile land, they were forced into militarism. The Soviets had to acquire Eastern Europe to feed themselves= =2E They did, however, have a lot of minerals, which were the raw materials for their industrializati= on, for heavy machinery such as tanks. The World Bank, therefore, adopted this idea and would fund de= velopment if it produced heavy machinery. (Now there is a swing back towards grass roots developm= ent.) This displaces people from the rural areas into the cities in search of higher wages. G= rowth is the goal, without regard for the consequent urban problems. Also we have made the countrie= s dependent on the West so we can exert political power over them. It is called economic imperia= lism or the new colonialism. And you cannot isolate yourselves. The world is interdependent. Saudi A= rabia and Russia are sitting on an ocean of oil. But what can they plant? The principle that man and = women's roles are equalling important can be applied to the global economics. Each country's role wi= ll be important. The problem is that nationalism breeds isolationism. It must be removed and replaced= with a "sane and intelligent patriotism." (The Peace Statement) 'Abdu'l-Baha's vision is that of a village economy, a small unit. J= eanie noted that New York is a bunch of villages. What is good about smallness? There is a book Sm= all is Beautiful. There is a much better network of communication. There is a level of autonomy. T= his is very different thatn independence. Independence breeds selfishness. Autonomy means that I de= termine my own destiny. = Autonomy means I take the responsibility. The paradigm shift to grass ro= ots initiatives means we go somewhere and ask what it is they want. For example, the LSA determines = what the village needs. = They find a group that can help them. That group involves them in the pr= ocess, teaches them how, provides the knowledge base. For example, the learned, the ABMs and assi= stants, are here to share the knowledge base, not to do the work that the community members must al= l do. It is a management role, even teaching them the science of management. Then the project mus= t continue to be guided via spiritual consultation. So that imbalances aren't created, etc. Per= haps networking with adjacent local communities is necessary. Prices will still be there, probably as = a signalling mechanism. The principles are there, the vision is there. Individuals need to work out = the details. Recall that the first requirement of the prisoners' dilemma was communication, then cooperation= =2E Redundancy, such as the 3 major TV networks and the major airlines would be reduced. It will= take advantage of economies of scale, the good part of monopolies, and remove the selfishne= ss. = =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 19:59:21 -0600 (CST) Subject: Re: Misunderstandings: deep blue devil From: "Richard C. Logan" To: "Robert Johnston" , "Talisman" >Dear Richard, > > Escaping from accusations of anti-Persianism you dealt me a >double-death blow, for which I forgive you, because I am in a tolerant >mood, and -- as everyone (ask Nima) knows -- am an all-round nice guy... > >Blow One: > >>I believe, if my fellow Baha'is of Iranian extraction, were fair they >>would acknowledge a certain caution on some topics in front of those not >>well grounded in the subtleties of this Cause. > >Blow two: > >> In other words, I was scolding Robert for his closed mindedness but I >>didn't want to say it so baldly as I have here (sorry Robert for this >>overt criticism). Dear Robert, Don't ever feel I was intimating that you are a "Spiritual Philistine". (Joke) You are obviously a brilliant man and a humble and humorous one to boot. For my own part, all I can say on this issue is--when the "Intellect" fails because it is a very limited tool: 1). One turns to the heart "the seat of God's Mysteries". 2). One places the question, with the full assurance an answer is forthcoming. 3). Receive the answer. One may or may not be able to intellectualize or articulate the answer, but to the measure of one's ability the mystery can be revealed. This is what I firmly believe, and I add this: It is merely my understanding. Richard Richard C. Logan firstname.lastname@example.org Maintain HomePape "The Baha'is of Lubbock" http://rampages.onramp.net/~nineteen/ +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ How manifold are the truths which must remain unuttered until the appointed time is come! Even as it has been said: "Not everything that a man knoweth can be disclosed, nor can everything that he can disclose be regarded as timely, nor can every timely utterance be considered as suited to the capacity of those who hear it." --Gleanings from the writings of Baha'u'llah +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 19:01:30 -0700 (MST) From: Sadra To: email@example.com Subject: Hallaj (a Manifestation *not* endowed with constancy?) Dear Ahang, Juan and talizens-- Pursuant to our discussion of the manifestational (mazhariyat) station of Mulla Muhammad-i Barfurushi, Hazrate Quddus, I have often wondered if there has been any _explicit_ mention of Hussein ibn Mansur al-Hallaj, the mystic-martyr of Baghdad, in the Writings -- I have seen it anywhere. In many ways, IMHO, Quddus is the soul-brother of Hallaj, and I'm sure you, Ahang, would agree to this. The reason I bring this up now is for two reasons: 1) I'm currently re-reading Louis Massignon's magisterial 4 volume study of this great Muslim saint (I finally got my own set and am half-way done with volume 1) & 2) we know `Abdu'l-Baha conferred an exalted station on Mowlana Jalaleddin-i Rumi in the Baha'i dispensation stopping short of actual manifestationhood, so conversely, as Rumi speaks in such an elevated terms about Mansur, I'm assuming the Baha'i Writings -- implicity or explicity, I don't know -- would acknowledge some station for my Sufi hero and Manifestation not endowed with constancy, Hallaj. After all, anyone who has the audacity to proclaim "ana'l-Haqq" (I am the Truth/or God) must occupy some station, no? This would also apply to Abu Yazid-i Bistami's "subhani" (Glory be to me). Would anyone care to dispel or clarify my heretical delusions? ;-) Nima =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 20:25:26 -0600 (CST) Subject: Re: Spheres of conferred infallibility From: "Richard C. Logan" To: , "Talisman" Dear Tony, Your not going to wriggle off that easily! But seriously, we are talking about two different things. I don't have a difference over the need to interact with the institutions and the "humdrum" things you refer to. Permit me to suggest that there may be a higher level that these things operate on unbeknownsed to mortals. Scincerely Richard Richard C. Logan firstname.lastname@example.org Maintain HomePape "The Baha'is of Lubbock" http://rampages.onramp.net/~nineteen/ +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ How manifold are the truths which must remain unuttered until the appointed time is come! Even as it has been said: "Not everything that a man knoweth can be disclosed, nor can everything that he can disclose be regarded as timely, nor can every timely utterance be considered as suited to the capacity of those who hear it." --Gleanings from the writings of Baha'u'llah +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 19:04:03 -0800 From: email@example.com (DEREK COCKSHUT ) Subject: Bosch Academy Student notes Islam ,Large file . To: firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Talismanians More of Scott Phelps's notes Kindest Regards Derek Cockshut Islam: Derek Cockshut, Dec. 25-27 =0D Introduction (Dec. 25 A. M.) About 1000 books were written against Islam before the Qur'an was tr= anslated. Not until the 19th century was any serious study of it made in the West. Of course the= Crusades were incorrectly represented as saving the Holy Land from the infidels. Islam in its early history actually paid for the upkeep of churches and synagogues. The Guardian recommends Rodwell's and Sale's translations because those were the only ones available. Rodwell's is indeed demeaning in its tonation. The bookshop has a translation by Dawood. You can get it with Arabic and English translation together. = Most Moslems say it's only authentic in Arabic and can be offended by English-only translations. Good books: The Venture of Islam (3 vols.), Islam and the West, History of the Arab People. One-sixth of the world's peoples are Moslem. The Qur'an is the most widely memorized book ever. It is entirely from the Prophet, 6363 verses. = Derek then went through a review of the authenticity of the books of= the other religions. = Gospels not decided upon until 3rd or 4th century. Gospel of St. Thomas = left out. Derek feels it is more accurate, not depicting Christ as God incarnate. But Church wanted Him to be. Buddhist original texts have been lost Pali Texts first collection . Baha'is tend to upset Buddhists by insisting on a semitic type of God . Reasonable to assume the Buddha did not need to teach of God in a society that was filled with the concept of the Divine . Nobody knows who started Hinduism. Krishna was one of the possible line of founders. = Moses didn't write the Torah as it records his own birth and disappearance , etc. = Derek then went through a review of the historical record of lack there of of other religions.. = There is no record of Christ. All we know is that this religion suddenly= sprang up in the first century. = Similarly with the record of Moses. Most dates for the origin of other religions are now in doubt and are being studied. However when we compare the historical record of Islam with the story of other religions, there are many parallels, which validate the other religions' stories. The greatest contribution of Zoroastrianism was the most complete teaching about life after death. Also there was a dowry system for women. He then gave the story of the religion of Mani(?) in Iran and Iraq 2nd century ce. =0D Muhammad's early life It was this environment that was Arabia before Muhammad. Many influences from other religions. Large Jewish communities of Arabs. They had been conquered periodically by others, but were nomadic, tribal people who prospered by raiding other tribes. They enjoyed warfare. Between 568 and 572 A.D. Muhammad was born. Mecca by that time had the Kaaba. During the annual four months of sacred truce they would go into Mecca and trade, etc. He was born an illiterate orphan. = This is not a negative, as widely reported in the West. 99.5 % of the world's population was illiterate. There is no proof that Christ was literate. This is irrevelant. Arabic = was the language of poetry, but had not been developed as a written language. The language of commerce was Aramaic. Arabic had not developed as a cultural form, except for the wide fame of poets. This is why the Qur'an takes on a different magic when read aloud. Even in English it retains some of this. A good one to read aloud is called Literal Interpretation of the Qur'an, by A. J. Arberry (Oxford). = Muhammad was orphaned by6 years old. His father died before he was born. His uncle looked after= him. His family was well connected in Mecca but not wealthy . He married a woman 15 years older than him and was essentially her manager,which included trade of camels. =0D The beginning of Islam When Muhammad was about 40, he received the revelation from Gabriel: "Read," which he couldn't. He was frightened and went home to his wife, Khadijih, who said this was from God and you must obey. So she was the first believer. The shorter surihs are from Mecca. Muhammad had practiced the religion of Mecca, which was pagan, with Gods for every day or so it seemed . of the year, with three Goddesses. Allah was the higher God. Tradition held that Abraham and Ishmeal had placed the Kaaba. = One of the claims that dates from that period is that all Arabs are desce= nded from Ishmeal. Once they had to remove the stone for some reason . Possession of it w=ould have meant great power. = Muhammad, before He was the great leader of the religion, worked out a compromise so no one would have to touch it. He achieved the name of Amin or Trustworhty . The business of Mecca was religion, the old one.= The first believers after his wife were Ali, Abu-Bakr, young people and slaves, not greatly respected; they didn't hold property or wives, etc. The tribal concept held that the eldest had all the power and precedence. Early Moslems were greatly persecuted. They weren't killed because of the law of tribal blood revenge,family and tribal honor. So they used to stake them out in the sand, ask = them to change their religion . By putting a stone on the persons chest and wait for him to die by overexposure to the sun, heat, lack of water,etc. This wasn't considered murder. Muhammad was stoned every day on his way to prayers. One day a man who threw stones every day wasn't there. Muhammad inquired and looked after him as he was ill, hoping he would get better. The man as he recovered said why are you doimg this I will only start stonimg you again .The Prophet smiled and said just get well . He loved children and animals. Even when he was the ruler of Arabia he lived in the same house, wore the same clothes and desired to be with the ordinary people. He was reputed to be very handsome, with black hair and very little grey even at his death. Regarding women: polygamy was practiced in the old society . Women were only to have sex with. Men bragged about their prowess. Women bragged about being available. They were items of pleasure. = Polandery also was practiced; a women could have as many husbands as she could. There were no real sexual morals. There was a preoccupation with sex. On a journey, some believers were away so long that they asked Muhammad if they should castrate themselves.The trip was about 3 weeks There was some female infanticide before Muhammad stopped it. Hospitality was king. Even an enemy could demand it if he reached your tent. Persecution became so bad that Muhammad sent about 70 of his followers across the Red Sea to Abbsinya = Then it got worse so Muhammad in 622 left for the 70 mile journey to Medi=na. Tribal leaders had decided to kill him . All of them so no blame could be assigned to any one tribe. The story of that night is recorded, with Muhammad hiding in caves and Ali sleeping= in his bed. This is the Hezira. The arrival in Medina is extremely important. The first mosque was established there, the longest surihs were revealed in Medina etc. One of the first things that Muhammad did was to change the point of=adoration from Jerusalem to Mecca. Derek then discussed the different mosques on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem,the third holiest site in Islam. Muhammad upon arrival also permitted his followers to raid as they were immigrants and had no wealth. This broke the hold that Mecca had = on the country. He then began to make treaties with tribes. He never broke one. People broke ones with Him. In starting a community, He then began to answer questions. He told them for example in detail how to go to the bathroom, how women should take care of themselves during menstruation. Very mundane questions were asked. You can once again pick up on the preoccupation with sex. He also said that what you do in private is between you and God. If you committed adultery, there had to be four witnesses to be stoned. One man kept telling Him what He'd done until he'd challenged the law and had to be stoned. = The burying of female children was stopped with a similar harsh law. Muhammad was trying to get them to take responsibility for themselves. Mullahs are actually not priests but masters of Islamic law. = The treatment of women The Prophet said up to four wives. Women were allowed to keep their own money,inheritance, which was probably higher than mosteverywhere else in the world. He said 100 camels for one woman. A man had to pay to divorce a woman. A woman had value. = A man was responible for the children conceived by him including a slave he had conceived a child with. =You couldn't enslave another Moslem. Muhammad was bringing a stable society. Early in Islam, some groups practiced polandery. The allowance for four wives was applied to women as well, so some women had four husbands. Women were much more equal early on. Veiling came much later. = Harem system came from India. Muhammad never had another wife while Khad=ijih was alive. His later wives were married for either political or humanitarian reasons. One western criticism of Muhammad is that Muhammad put an old friend in the front of a battle in order to m=arry this man's wife. Yes, this man's wife was beautiful and very desirable, the man was put in the front of battle, etc. But, this woman was 59! With the death of her husband, she had no sons who hadn't been killed in battle. = Muhammad was ruler of Arabia; he could have had anyone. By marrying her,=He could take care of the whole family of daughters and grandchildren.The marriage was one of honor and respect to a devoted followerr who fell in battle and had always fought in the front rank Ashia was 9 when Muhammad married her. He didn't sleep with her until she was 12 or 13. 9 was the normal age of marriage. She was allowed tobring her dolls and friends. It was also out of respect and protection as she was the daughter of Abu-Bakr, who was to be the first Caliph and was under a lot of pressure. At= one point He left His wivesfor a month because of their bickering over His visitation schedule with them. = =0D A few stories After Muhammad's followers had defeated a tribe of Jewish Medinians, He asked them to come to Him for judgement over their treachery , but they refused. They said they would accept the = judgement of their kinsman,one of Muhammad's followers who had concluded the orginal treaty with them , and asked that Muhammad sign in agreement to=this. Well theirkinsman decreed that all the males of the tribe be put to death. This is=the source of a claim that Moslems hated Jews. But when Muhammad went back into Mecca, only two known apostates ofIslam were executed. His last great act was His farewell pilgrimage wherein He asked "Hav=e I perfected the religion of God?" He was apparently in very good health, about 70 years old, when suddenly he died. =0D Succession and guidance Upon Muhammad's death, Islam immediately broke into two groups, the =Sunni and the Shi'ih. = There are two stories, one saying that Muhammad last words were incoherent and that therefore the successor was chosen as the eldest believer, Abu-Bakr, Muhammad's great friend. Others say that throughout the farewell pilgrimage, Muhammad referred many times to Ali. Many Sunni scholars say that the first four caliphs were the rightful ones and that the time from the Hezira in 622 to the death of Ali, the fourth caliph, in 662 was the golden age of Islam. Ali was very charismatic, generous, chivalrous, larger than life. He had actually reunited the two branches before he was assassinated. = After this second tragedy, the Sunni were deprived of the divine guidance of the Imamate. = The had to develop the Shariah, the way of being. The four schools of Islamic jurisprudence are based on the six accepted collections of Hadiths. Two of these collections are regarded as the most authentic, Boukhari and Muslim. One of them insisted on three separate confirming sources. Then there is Mishkat, which is a mixture of the two authenticated collections= = All together there are 19 books of Hadiths. The Shi'ihs didn't accept these traditions, although studied by their scholars. They have their own traditions, which come from the Imams. The largest group of Shi'ihs =are those that follow the 12 Imams. The first Imam, also the fourth caliph, was Ali. His son Hasan w=as the second. This group is mainly found in Iraq, Iran and Pakistan. For the most part, all of the Imams were killed by the Sunnis. The martyrdom of Husayn is especially tragic and a day of flagel=lation and mourning,Muvarram. This was the final break between the two branches. When a group of Shi'ihs desecrated the caliphs' graves, they spared only Omar II . The former was= very humble and told his soldiers to enroll people in the Faith. The soldiers weren't because then there wouldn't be anyone to pay taxes as Moslems didn't pay.It is reported He said it is better that you and I toil the fields than to keep people out of the Faith. Omar I was the one who accepted the surrender of Jerus=alem from the Bishop, andwho was also humble. The bishop, when he saw Omar's humble clothes,= said "We are lost," to his aide. = =0D Islam's contributions to the world Moslems were great sponges of past learning and are responsible for modern math, hygiene, = medicine, the first university, within 100 years of Muhammad. For law, they had the Jewish law to build upon. The great architecture of Spain, etc. is Moslem. =0D Law and Belief There are 5 pillars. The first is prayer. The manner of kneeling, etc. was what Muhammad had shown them. They pray five times a day, always at the set time. The=Friday mid-morning prayer was led by the local leader, the Imam Jumih. Imam today means the leader= of a Shi'ih community. The second pillar is fasting. They fast for a lunar month of 28 days, called Ramadan. The hrs. offasting, from when you can tell the difference between black and white threads to when you can't, are longer than from sunrise to sunset. This can be very hard in the summer.= This was difficult for Muhammad to begin; it changed the whole foundation of the Arab society. They were used to sex, food, etc. on demand. The third pillar is pilgrimage, the haj. Everyone is supposed to go and wear the same cloth. This creates a real brotherhood where you can't tell the difference between millionaires and paupers. Malcolm X experienced this true Islam and could have been assassinated for saying the Nation of Islam the latter wasn't true Islam. The fourth is zahat, or the giving of about 2% of your income as alms for the poor. The fifth is jihad, holy war to protect Islam. It has never been declared by anyone duly authorized, such as an Imam. In the true sense it is to wage war on yourself, to purify yourself to become the Moslem you're supposed to be. Wars fought by Islamic nations were ordinary wars of expansion. Islam is reformed tradtionally roughly every 100 yrs. by a revered jurist. This person would have the authority. Because of the independence of these four schools of law, such jurists of law very often went against the Caliphs. Every Moslem was equal before the law. Certainly the average Moslem was much more involved with their religion than the average Christian. This led to a better level of reading and wriitng, an attempt to extend education towards the =people. = =0D Course of Islam The glorious years of Islam were when it was spread from Arabia to Iraq, across North Africa and into Europe. The civilization in Spain and Sicily were very notable in causing the Renaissance. = The Crusades were as well. The Crusades were not , ever caused by Moslems.= The invasion by the Mongols set Islamic civilization back as the Mongols reached all the way into Europe. After they were finally turned back by the Ottoman Turks, and the Mongols became Moslems, their barbarism was tamed. One example of the devastation caused by the Mongols was the turning of Basra from a most feritle area into a salt marsh. The Mongols did this by breaking all the dikes. Shi'ih Islam in Persia was a special problem because the language of the religion, Arabic, was different than the language of the country, Persian. They were reliant on the people who knew Arabic such as the clergy. The religion was hence ripe for exploitation, which is what the clergy did in Persia. = Since the people didn't know Arabic, the clergy were able to manipulate the religion. This is why the Bab and Baha'u'llah were so opposed to the clerics, for what they had done to the religion of God. One of the great contributions of the Persian Moslems was the Sufism. The Sufis who were really the spirit of Islam. They were rebelling against the rigidity of the religion. Typically a Sufi was good at many things. One could be a doctor, a musician, an astrologer, a poet all in one. They had reallybegan to explore the potential of the human mind.In their search for guidance without the benefit of the interpretation of the Imams, the Sunnis were sponges, thirsty for knowledge. They became exposed to Neo-Platonism, that man was the embodiment of God. Mu'tazilism was such an early group that got the ear of the caliphs and claimed to be liberal but were very intolerant in pratice. They felt that Qur'an wasn't the literal Word of God, but that it is the result of interaction between the Word of God. So it could be reinterpreted. However if youdidn't agree with their interpretation, you could be put to death. Ash'arism was an opposite group that felt, like we do, that the Qur'an was the literal, uncreated Word of God. The debate was whether the religion would remain available to the common man (Ash'arites) or just the domain of an elite (Mu'tazilites). = Al-Ghazali, took the Ash'arites' strict definition of the Qur'an, be= came a Sufi and redefined Islam. He blended the two intolerant views into one for the benefit of t=he common people. He is called the greatest Moslem after Muhammad. Derek: no one would disagree with him being at least in the top five. = After this early debate, the intellectual development, the belief mechanisms of the religion then flowered and didn't really decline for a long time. Everything prescribed today about women covering up is the result of the mentality that men are obsessed with sex. They still believe that men have no control over their sexuality, even though the teachings of Mohammed were for the Arabs of that time. This is why they put women in the back of the mosque. They say if we put them in the front, when they bend over men would rush forward and have sex with them. Khomeini wrote a book in the early 1980's wherein he answers a somewhat ludicrous question. Someone had asked him whether, if you were on your roof in an earthquake and fell on your aunt, it was lawful to have sex. He said it was ok! =The book is considered an embarassment by many Iranian Moslems. This illustr=ates the great tragedy, that Islam lost divine guidance. They had the Word of God but since they didn='t have divine guidance. They eventually had nonsensical discussions. When Baha'u'llah condemned things that begin with words and end with words, he meant Islamic jurisprudence, not philosophy in general. There was once a discussion of great importance to try to answer the question of what you were required to do if you came across the urine of an Imam. Urine is considered unclean in the Qur'an but an Imam is by definition a pure being. Such pointless discussions are what Baha'u'llah condemned. There are two people referred to in the Qur'an as failed Manifestations. Salih was one of them. = Derek wants to further research the Persian prophet Mani. It is very a=rrogant to tell native Americans and others that they never had a Manifestation. We believe that every people had one. We just don't know about them. They could have been regional Manifestations. =0D Sufism (Dec. 26) Sufism can't be overemphasized for its contribution to Islam. The founding of it is unsure. = Some think it was Rabia, a woman, who founded it. Rumi is of course famo=us. Rabia was born in Basra around 800 A. D. She was orphaned at 6 years old and sold into slavery into a very harsh household. She broke her arm in her teens, and the master expected her to carry on as before. He then heard her at prayer that night asking for forgiveness that she couldn't serve her master as well. = He was overcome with remorse and gave her a choice between her freedom and becoming one of his wives, a position of honor. She chose her freedom because she felt it would be easier to worship God. = There are stories about her that reflect her saintliness. It is reportedthat she prayed all night with a friend, who then asked what they should do now. She said we ask forgiveness from God for praying all night to Him. Another story is some asked her why she prayed to God . She said it is good to pray .Do you pray out of fear of the next world, or for reward in the next world. However praying to God was reward enough, she said. One of the abiding glories of Iran is the way Persian Sufism was nurtured and blended into Shi'ih Islam. Hafaz, Rumi, etc. were truly great. The Sufis were always concerned withthe eternal, so in tune with God that they felt it was hard to separate themselves or anything in the world from God. Baha'is are in agreement with this. There is the story that Baha'u'llah came across a Sufi who was cooking some meat and the man was asked what he was doing.He said he was cooking God. All of Baha'u'llah's entourage were aghast. Baha'u'llah laughed and sat down and chatted with him. We, too, regard everything we see as an expression of God. We do see limits to human development, however. The lesson in Sufism is that of the result of not having divine guidance. It was a reaction to literalism. But without divine guidance,the Sufis went too far. The Seven Valleys were written in response to what is regarded as the greatest of the Sufi poems, The Conference of the Birds, by Farid ud-Din Attar. One part of this poem contains the same seven valleys Baha'u'llah wrote about. Baha'u'llah was responding to the extreme Sufis who felt they should take union with God, etc. to extremes, to go beyond the bounds of the Qur'an, in order to see if that negative was actually positive for their development. He was saying you must stay within the bounds, within the guidance of the Manifestation. Americans always refer to the Sufi dancing, that of a dervish, was to put your body on automatic so your mind and soul could commune with God more clearly. Rumi would hook his arm around a tree and circle around it before communing with God. There are groups in the US who claim to offer Sufi dancers. This is really entertainment and titillation, not Sufi dancing. One of the great bounties of Islam was the conferring of individual responsibility and the concept that the Faith was for everybody.. The five pillars of faith are similar to ours. There was no clergy with control or powersuch as in Christainity. There were religious teachers. With the individual responsibility to go on pilgrimage, there was a great brotherhood. On the haj, the humblest and the highest all wore the same cloth. We Baha'is need to study Islam to really get the idea that the Faith of God is for everyone. The lowest Arabs were the first Moslems. They conquered the world. =0D Dec. 27 The domed church was the sign of the eastern, Greek Orthodox Church. This was the typical structure of the Byzantine Empire. The cross-shaped church was the sign of the Roman Catholic Church, before the Gothic influence. = Recommended books: 1. The History of Al-Tabari, transl. by John Alden Williams, in some 38 volumes, considered the standard history of Islam, source of much of h=istorical records; 2. Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi, A Commemorative Volume, by the M. I. A. society, he is considered one of the greats; 3. The Life of Muhammad, by Haykal, great stories about the Prophet; 4. Voices of Islam, by John Bowker; 4. The Vision of Islam, by Murata and Chittick; 5.= Islam and the West,by Bernard Lewis; 6. Islam and the West, The Making of an Image, by Norman Daniel, history of the development of the negative image of Islam in the West; 7. The Faith and Practice of Al- Ghazali, transl. by Montgomery Watt; 8. The Koran, transl. by Dawood, wit= h parallel Arabic text,a Penguin Classic---only $19.95!; 9. A History of the Arab Peoples, byb Albert Hourani. Regarding Islam, in response to Derek's question about what we've learned so far, I said I was interested in studying Islam for 3 reasons now: 1. To get their understa=nding that the Faith of God was for all the people, not just certain people, which I think has been a barrier to expansion of the American Baha'i community; 2. To get Islam's sense of submission to the Will of God, of humility, that perhaps many Americans who go from Christianity to the Faith miss out on; 3. I was reminded of the need to read The Conference of the Birds to understand the Seven Valleys. Derek recommended using the Medium Obligatory Prayer to increase one's se=nse of submission. = Koran From the Surih on Women, there is guidance about the number of wives to marry: ". . . if you fear you cannot maintain equality among them, marry one only . . .This will make it easier for you to avoid injustice." Many scholars think Muhammad meant one wife. Many of the marriages were the adoption of orphans. Also in the same surih, there is the rules for inhe=ritance. It would be interesting to compare this with that in the Aqdas. Also there is a very important passage about Islam's commitment to marriage. "If you fear a breach between a man and his wife, appoint an arbiter from his people and another from hers. If they wish to be reconciled God will bring them together again." = This is a teaching we could bring forward directly and use today because the parents have to give consent anyway. Your parents are a part of the contract. They should be a part of trying to save it. = This also argues against the idea that a Moslem man could divorce a woman by saying "I divorce you" three times.without thought =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 20:25:04 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: S Lieberman Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu Subject: Re: The Guardian re: Hitler On Thu, 11 Jan 1996, Steve Lieberman wrote: > In connection with his attitude towards Hitler, it is interesting > to note that in 1933, Hitler made a number of his more famous "Peace > Speeches" Steve, if you have access to a book containing Hitler's speeches, can you look up the one he gave on October 14, 1933, to which the Guardian's letter refers, which had been forwarded to the Holy Land? Can you post a few selections that give the general flavor? In his letter the Guardian acknowledged that the philosophy of Hitler's government, with specific reference to nationalism, was revolting to the friends. He also, later in the letter, used language strikingly similar to a letter [published in Citadel of Faith] which he wrote more than two decades later, where he states that America's effective participation in World War II helped to overthrow Fascism and Nazism which were completely at variance with the universal tenets of the Faith. So it seems to me that upon reading Hitler's speeches, the Guardian sensed that something was not quite right; as Thoreau said in Walden Pond, "like finding a fish in the milk." =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 20:43:03 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: Talisman Subject: Forgiveness In His greatest work, his Will and Testament, 'Abdu'l-Baha revealed this prayer in which He forgave those who put Him through such trials. These sentiments manifest to me new heights of forgiveness: "I call upon Thee, O Lord my God! with my tongue and with all my heart, not to requite them for their cruelty and their wrong-doings, their craft and their mischief, for they are foolish and ignoble and know not what they do. They discern not good from evil, neither do they distinguish right from wrong, nor justice from injustice. They follow their own desires and walk in the footsteps of the most imperfect and foolish amongst them. O my Lord! Have mercy upon them, shield them from all afflictions in these troubled times and grant that all trials and hardships may be the lot of this Thy servant that hath fallen into this darksome pit. Single me out for every woe and make me a sacrifice for all Thy loved ones. O Lord, Most High! May my soul, my life, my being, my spirit, my all be offered up for them. O God, my God! Lowly, suppliant and fallen upon my face, I beseech Thee with all the ardor of my invocation to pardon whosoever hath hurt me, forgive him that hath conspired against me and offended me, and wash away the misdeeds of them that have wrought injustice upon me. Vouchsafe unto them Thy goodly gifts, give them joy, relieve them from sorrow, grant them peace and prosperity, give them Thy bliss and pour upon them Thy bounty. Thou art the Powerful, the Gracious, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting!" (Will and Testament of 'Abdu'l-Baha, Part 2, pp. 18-19) =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 20:46:27 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: QUANTA DAWNLIGHT Cc: email@example.com Subject: Re: your mail On Thu, 11 Jan 1996, QUANTA DAWNLIGHT wrote: > I'll work on the homepage and include Brent Poirier and Sandy > fotos picture for your viewing next week. Hope we're not alone; this is a way of personalizing our communications with one another on Talisman. Please send your photos to Quanta. Brent =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 20:51:18 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: TLCULHANE@aol.com Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Questions on Teaching etc. On Thu, 11 Jan 1996 TLCULHANE@aol.com wrote: "... a group of youth were ... discussing changing their majors in college to be of more service to humankind. What is a college major that will allow one to be of service to mankind, contrasted with ones that won't or are of lesser service?" It is hard for me (other than the obvious ones like tobacco auctioneer and beer salesman) to name occupations that are not appropriate ones for Baha'is to be of service to humanity. This is more a matter of motive than content. =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 20:53:37 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: Ahang Rabbani Cc: email@example.com Subject: Re: various On Wed, 10 Jan 1996, Ahang Rabbani wrote: > > How would gathering signatures for such a proposal not be > > interpreted as the very thing which you seemed to discourage in > > your posting regarding Fadil? > > I think one could make a distinction between presenting the House > with a *group* suggestion and organizing a campaign to force the > institutions into a particular action. I think this is important. I recall that one of the friends had spoken to Steve Birkland, who had suggested trying to come up with some consensus decisions. So there is a right way of approaching this. =END= Date: Sat, 13 Jan 1996 21:10:43 -0700 (MST) From: "[G. Brent Poirier]" To: Doug Myers Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: 7-up Candy Bars and Burl On Thu, 11 Jan 1996, Doug Myers wrote: "What is the spiritual equivalent of chocolate and where can I get some?" #1. Chakra Chips. #2. Chocolate chip cookies are absolute proof of a merciful God. #3. Without repetitions, there are 7 letters in "chocolate." #4. Chocolate chip cookies were invented by a Miss Ivy Templar in Mount Carmel, Illinois in June, 1844. =END= [end of 1/13/96 session]