Talisman Bahai Archives Feb 8-14, 1996

## 96Feb2

```February 8-14, 1996

---------------------------------------------------------

From: belove@SOVER.NET
Date: Wed,  7 Feb 96 08:33:27 PST
Subject: humor, sex, fuzzy logic.
To: talisman@indiana.edu, "Hannah E. Reinstein"

Dear Hannah/Cary,

The punctuation posting is a real gem. Thanks so much.

I teach a course in communication and I was trying to explain
punctuation to them and this is a perfect teaching tool.

By the way, I've been reading a book on Fuzzy Logic. As a systems
nets, and all that.

As you know, it's about the difference between strict bi-valent
logic, where something is either a or not-a, where the middle is
deliberately excluded and the kind of thinking where the middle is
basically all there really is. It is a logic that involves a large
gray scale.

This fuzzy logic, it is argued, is a more accurate mirror of the way
life really is, than the either/or logic, which mirrors thinking.

(An incidently, does any one here know the relationship between fuzzy
logic and the work of G. Spencer Brown *Laws of Form*?)

The distinction between men and women, male and female, is an example
of old, Aristotelian, bi-valent logic. This new thinking suggests
that there is rather a continuum between male and female and that we
all exist on this continuum.

I had a personal experience of this only yesterday. I am a third or
forth degree black belt in jitterbug dancing and, accordingly, I am
expert in both leading and following, in dancing both the "male" part
and the "female" part.  In my classes here in town, I insist that men
and women learn both sides from the very beginning.  My logic is that
you can't understand smooth and considerate and effective leading
unless you know how to follow and you can't really follow unless you
levels, leading and following becomes much more complex and
interconnected.

The classes are very effective because there is no squabbling. In the
past, when I've taught in the traditional manner, couples would come
and he would only learn to lead and she only to follow and then, in
the class, she would criticize his leading and he would demand that
she follow better.  But in my class, they have to learn a step and
then switch sides and they have to practice on both sides. What
happens is that they become fascinated with the process, spend a lot
of time talking about what happens and comparing notes on the
experience of leading and following and there is no squabbling.

But, I'm on my way to a story about the continuum between the
genders. As a consequence of the success of my classes I began
talking to the gay and lesbian community about offering a similar
class to them: gender free swing dancing. And I am finding that there
is a subtle pressure for me to declare myself as to where I exist on
that continuum.

These are people used to thinking in terms of the continuum, I think.
But really I don't think they are able to think about it without some
feelings of shame and guilt. I'm not sure I am either.

But as I thought about myself, I did feel that I am somewhere in the
middle. Even though I am a committed heterosexual, on the MMPI I have
a very high femininity score, more than three standard deviations
from the mean.  Many men in the helping professions do, but mine is
exceptionally high.

I never had sex with a man but, as I look back on my life, I can see
where the right combination of circumstances could have led to it. I
recognize the capacity within myself.  I think I'm fortunate that I
didn't because it would have made it so much more difficult for me to
arrive at a comfortable understanding of who I am. And that's been a
hard road anyway, in part, probably because so much of me is female
-- if I can speak so imprecisely for a moment.

These are random thoughts of mine, as I try to sort out my position
on sex and gender and as I try to incorporate these ideas about fuzzy
logic and sex.

I address them to you because, as a computer person, I imagine you
know something about fuzzy logic and I know you've given a lot of
thought to gender identity. So I wonder what you might have to say to
me about my story and about the relationship between fuzzy logic and
sexual and gender self definition..

And finally, to the Talisman audience, I don't know whether this
gender identity, mystical self-realization and spirituality but I am
trying to do it in a way that recognizes not only scholarship but
also my deep personal stake in these matters. I think that means that
my contributions tend to be a bit confessional. I worry about the
appropriateness of such musings. But I'm not sure what can come of
spiritual conversations that are not a bit like that.

Thoughtfully, Respectfully yours

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/07/96
Time: 08:33:27

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

From: belove@SOVER.NET
Date: Wed,  7 Feb 96 21:42:23 PST
Subject: FW: Returned mail
To: talisman@indiana.edu

On Wed, 7 Feb 96 07:37:17 PST  belove@sover.net wrote:
>
>On Wed, 7 Feb 96 07:20:57 PST  belove@sover.net wrote:
>>
>>------------Transcript of Session-------------
>>
>>
>>
>>-------------Undelivered Message--------------
>>
>>Date: Mon,  5 Feb 96 08:36:24 PST
>>From: belove@sover.net
>>Subject: FW: Sinaic Imagery
>>To: talisman@indiana.edu
>>X-Mailer: Chameleon V0.05, TCP/IP for Windows, NetManage Inc.
>>Message-ID:
>>MIME-Version: 1.0
>>Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII
>>
>>
>>On Thu, 1 Feb 1996 15:18:35 -0800  SFotos@eworld.com wrote:
>>>Dear friends,
>>>
>>
>>>
>>>And there is no doubt that the male sex drive, with its
derivatives
>
>>of
>>>territoriality and dominance, is a prime motivator in human
>affairs,
>>Some
>>>(WARNING--INFLAMMATORY TERM)  sociobiologists have suggested that
>>most
>>>institutions today are structured to mirror male dominance
rituals,
>
>>power
>>>acquisition and maintenance, gatekeeping functions etc.
>>>
>>
>>
>>This is a highly questionable, incomplete, reductionistic, and
>>accusatory characterization of male  gender roles.
>>
>>I, for one, am not willing to accepts this assertion that
>>territoriality and dominance are part of *male sex drive* with its
>>implications that these attributes, characterized here only in
their
>>most negative connotations, are genetically inherent.
>>
>>I think it is important that we recognize and acknowledge female
>>anger and distrust and criticism of male ways, but I think it is
>>equally important that we do so explicitly and that we not accept
>>these buried, implicit attacks as though they were true.  The
result
>>would be a kind of sexism that is to be avoided.
>>
>>
>>Philip
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>-------------------------------------
>>Name: Philip Belove
>>E-mail: belove@sover.net
>>Date: 02/05/96
>>Time: 08:36:25
>>
>>This message was sent by Chameleon
>>-------------------------------------
>>Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
>>Einstein
>>
>
>-------------------------------------
>Name: Philip Belove
>E-mail: belove@sover.net
>Date: 02/07/96
>Time: 07:37:17
>
>This message was sent by Chameleon
>-------------------------------------
>Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein
>

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/07/96
Time: 21:42:24

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein

=END=

Date: Wed, 7 Feb 1996 22:11:29 -0500 (EST)
From: jwalbrid
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Majnun: Reality checks

I really must--uncharacteristically--agree with my good wife.

1. *Any* sort of an organization is an absolute nonstarter at this
point.  That is the one thing that will not in any way be tolerated.
There is a clear precedent in the Guardian's handling of the New History
Society.  It will just get us all thrown out on our ears, force the
decent people to back the scoundrels, and in all likely push the Faith
back into the intellectual ghetto, much like happened after the expulsion
of Sohrab.  Let's forget it and erase the messages suggesting it.

2. Ditto *Modest Proposal II*.  It didn't work last time and it won't
work this time.  It will just polarize the situation.

3. Ditto direct attacks on individuals.  Leave them to dig their own
graves; they have, after all, staff to help them.  Attacks on members of
the NSA by organized or perceived-to-be-organized agitators, particularly
members of the notorious ex-West LA crowd, will force the House to rally
to the defence of the NSA.

4. Let us remember that we have won three rounds recently: Talisman was
not strangled in its cradle; the NSA seems to have backed down on
attacking David--according to rumor because they feared that Indiana
University would sue them, I am gratified to say; and the NSA is standing
its ground against the House on the issue of the Baha'i encyclopedia.

5. We have hit on a winning strategy, I think:
a) Avoid direct confrontations whenever possible.
b) If attacked, as in David's case, indicate that we are prepared
to stand our ground and make trouble.
c) Get information and ideas into circulation.
d) Keep the heat on whenever it can be done without direct confrontations.
e) Do not allow ourselves to be painted as bad Baha's.
f) Give the powers-that-be a graceful way out of their problems.

They're starting to eat their horses inside the fortress; let's stay
safely in the trenches and not jump up and charge the cannons.  This
means that we need to keep doing what we are doing: no committees,
manifestos, or unnecessary martyrs.  In particular, now is the time to
lay on earnest charm.

And, Nima, as for you, I do not want any more of these inflammatory
statements.  You have no independent clout yet apart from whatever your
family connections might be, and we will need you for the next
generation's fights.  There is no point in your getting thrown out now.
So lay off the manifesto-making and work on your Arabic verb tables, or I
will drop you from Talisman.  What is the 8th form feminine plural
imperative of Q-R-B?

john walbridge

=END=

From: iskandar@ns.moran.com
Date: Wed,  7 Feb 96 23:33:21 PST
Subject: Tarjuman
To: Bahai-Discuss@BCCA.Org

What or where is Tarjuman?
How do I subscribe to it?
Thanks,
Iskandar
-------------------------------------
Name: Iskandar Hai, M.D.
E-mail: iskandar@ns.moran.com
Date: 02/07/96
Time: 23:33:21

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 13:19:50 JST
From: "Stephen R. Friberg"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu, jarmstro@sun1.iusb.edu
Subject: Re: Re: Re: Sexual Imagery not just Male

> > Er ...  What is going on here?
>
> Steve -
> That by using the kind of logic that Jackson was referring to can be used to
> 'prove' that women are by nature 'conservative' and men, 'liberal'.  While
> on the face of it, the arguments appear rational, they require the acceptance
> of some un-stated ideas that are never proven but simply accepted.

Dear Don:

Thanks.  But please be careful about the words you use.  I am afraid
that these types of comments sound exactly like the types of comments
that are used to keep women in their places!

I know you didn't mean that, and that we should be more clear about what
we say.  But, phrasing is important, and not seeming to attack women is
important, too.  I'm worried about backlash here.

The women on Talisman constantly complain about how unfriendly towards
women our attitudes are, and typically leave.  I would like that to
change.  So, if we were to lean more towards a positive assessment
of women, rather than these stereotypical archetypes of women as
maidens, etc., it would be best, I think.  Does this mean offering
a more positive picture of women's characteristics?  I think so.
Should we have to defend such a positive picture?  Not unless we
are supporting a double-standard, which I am worried is the case
here.

were to post more about these issues, it would be nice, I think.

Stephen F.

=END=

Date: Wed, 7 Feb 1996 23:10:11 -0600 (CST)
Subject: re: liberalism and free speech
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Marie L. Procter" , "Talisman"

>Does practicing "radiant acquiesence" mean that we cannot raise questions
>about certain practices of our institutions through the legitimate channels
>available to us, i.e. Feast consultation and recommendations to our
>Assemblies, letters to our esteemed bodies and consultation with
>representatives of the Institution of the Learned.

Dear Marie,

No it does not,  and I feel immensely depressed that you would even
suggest such a thing.  The implication here is that I am the the worst of
Baha'is--Draconian in the extreme.  I have been troubled all afternoon
and evening after receiving this.  I tried to compose an answer to your
question but my strength finally failed me.  Perhaps I can speak of it
another time.

Sometimes words just aren't enough.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Wed, 7 Feb 1996 22:53:37 -0600 (CST)
From: Robert Lee Green
To: belove@sover.net
Cc: Steven Coles , talisman@indiana.edu,
Brooke Rolston
Subject: Re: Welcoming & Affirming Gays

In Selections from the writings of Abdu'l-Baha, Abdu'l-Baha writes,
"Treat everyone with whom you are concerned as a mother, or a father, a
sister or a brother, an uncle or an aunt, or as a child. All your
difficulties will vanish, and you will know what to do."

I had some trouble with this because my family was dysfunctional, and I
was treating people like members of my biological family. Geez what a
mistake :-) grin.  But as Abdu'l-Baha said I, I reconsidered, maybe I
needed to look for a functional family to provide some modeling. Any way
that is part of this story at a later date. I finally chose his family
:-), at least the healthy functional ones :-)

On Tue, 6 Feb 1996 belove@sover.net wrote:

> So I have some confusion here. Do Baha'is really exclude gays. The
> answer is no and yes. "No" as people, as friends. "Yes" as Baha'i's
> if they wish to have a sex life as a gay person.
>

The answer is no. refer to the writings to discover exactly who Baha'is
can exclude. The answer is Liars, Thiefs, and Covenant Breakers. Period.
Sex life has nothing to do with these. Even the removal of rights does
not exclude people in any final kind of way. But may limit types of
participation.

The people who happen to be Baha'is must come to grips with
"unconditional love" for others. Baha'u'llah helps when He says, "Should
any differences arise amongst you, behold Me standing before your face,
and overlook the faults of one another as a token of your love for my
namesake, and this manifest and resplendent cause."

The question did not refer to sex, which is another issue. Baha'is are
commanded to love all people, even the liars, thieves and covenant
breakers whom we may not associate with,with few exceptions. Period.

The degree to which we are able to do this, will in large measure
encourage entry by troops. I post because for a long time, I couldn't
reconcile my place in the community with my understanding of the
communities actions.

It wasn't until I was able to separate the community from Baha'u'llah
that any real change occurred.

When as individual we realize that Baha'u'llah set the standards and only
Baha'u'llah is fit to judge whether we met His standard according to our
capacity. No one else has this privilege. So our answer must be to any
question like this is Baha'is exclude only Liars, Thieves and Covenant
breakers.

While it is true that homosexual expression is forbidden to assume that
an individual who identifies as homosexual is having sexual is
presumptuous, and I wouldn't recommend it.

Presuming usually highlights one's own stereotypes, which may or may not
apply to any given individual. Let us remember when we speak, that many
times the ideas we convey are our own, even if we feel they are inspired
by the writings. We must be careful not to allow personal understandings
to be represented as those of the Baha'is.

And here is my irony. I don't want to have to defend everything I say
with the writings, nor do I want the writings to do all my talking for
me, but I think the writings should inform every post.

It seems to me that this post begins to move us towards the idea of
affirmation, and what is the context which Baha'is can cheerfully and with
good conscious affirm gays. More on that later. Finding an acceptable
middle ground is one of my current grounds.

One the one hand I feel like my hands are tied but the community, and on
the other hand, I recognize a divine call to invite Gay people into the
commuity. For some reason, I seem drawn to those communities which
traditional have not been very welcome in America. Minorities.  Imagine
entry by troops, whole communities transformed by sheer numbers. I want
to invite everyone to the wedding feast announced in the Bible.

>  |
> >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          |
> >                      ------------------------------------------------
> >
>
> -------------------------------------
> Name: Philip Belove
> E-mail: belove@sover.net
> Date: 02/06/96
> Time: 15:15:16
>
> This message was sent by Chameleon
> -------------------------------------
> Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein
>

------------------------------------------------
|  "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=

From: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Date: Wed, 7 Feb 1996 23:49:28 -0500
Message-Id: <960207234925_138792813@emout05.mail.aol.com>
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Ahang  and all ,

With all due respect am I to assume that the proposition that that there is
only *one* voice in the writings of Bahau llah and that it is always
*masculine* is an article of *Faith* and by what scriptural authority should
I *assume* this to be* true* .

Clearly if one assumes that THE MAIFESTATION of GOD is equivalent to
the biological maleness of Mirza Husayn Ali then one could say that their is
only one voice and it is always masculine . This leaves us with at last two
problems 1) It reduces the reality of Divinity to a Nasut level of existence
; the trancendent disappears . This would leave one with the reasonable
asumption that Bahau lah was a neat philosopher but not much more .
2) We could try and resolve this dilemna by invoking a re-worked version of
incarnationism whereby the Divine takes on human form . the probles here is
that we fall into conflict with the Guardain who states:" So crude and
fantastic a theory of Divine Incarnation is as far removed from and
incompatible with the essentials of Bahai belief as are the no less
admissable pantheistic and anthropomorphic conceptions of God."

It seems to me the *Reality* of the Manifestation transcends this
earthly plane - Nasut- and its Eternal or Deathless reality abides in Lahut .
When Bahau llah attempts to convey this Deathless reality to us He clearly
uses *feminine * imagery.  As the earthly level of existence is the one from
which we derive our knowledge of existence - in the first place - Bahau llah
provides us with allegories which reflect our earthly existence. The poles of
this plane are male and female and these correspond to spiritual realities -
Attributes -  which exist in the next dimension - Malakut - which are in turn
emanations of Jabarut which in turn is an emanation of Lahut .- The Station
of the Manifestation .

Bahau llah decribes this station and his - human rational soul - encounter
with God as Beloved in feminine imagery and clearly adopts a feminine persona
for the reality of the MANIFESTATION.  He also uses masculine imagery for
this as well . It is , however, most significant that His experience of the
Beloved  , the relationship of the lover and the Beloved, is cast in feminine
terms .   Now if we can agree that Bahau lah characterizes the Divine Beloved
as the Maid of Heaven - Feminine mode - then it becomes clear that He has
adopted the feminine persona for Himself when he states in Gleanings :" For
whereas in days past every lover besought and searched after the Beloved, it
is the Beloved Himself Who now is calling His lovers and is inviting them to
attain His presence ."

There are numerous other examples of this but this one should suffice
for as Bahau llah might say "the fair-minded."

Why is this adoption of the feminine persona of such significance ?
1)  because this is a truly universal manifestation and as slightly more
than half of the human race is female this revelation must needs address the
spiritual existence of women who constitute this half of a universal humanity
.
Why is that important ?
2) because this half of the human race has been  historically relegated to
a status as something less than fully human .  Bahau llah's adoption of the
feminine persona in the lover -beloved realtionship opens , validates and
*recognizes* the  fully human staus of women and groungs this staus in Theos
- God .
Why is this important ?
3) because if one can exclude , directly or indirectly ,  half of the human
race from God -Talk  then one can always call into question there status as
fully human .  If the Divine Beloved is as fully feminine as it is masculine
then the *sacred * resides in both those realities . And as we all know to
*violate the *sacred* is blasphemous.  This is the worst of sins as it is an
attack upon the Holy Spirit which is an attack upon THE* COVENANT * itself .
Given the level of violence towards women in history and currently I think
the importance of this becomes apparent .  If in unmistabable language Bahau
llah grounds spiritual reality in the feminine as well as the masculine one
oppresses or perpetuates violence towards women at the peril of ones eternal
life.

Now considering that these attributes of feminine / masculine are
present in each soul , irregardless of which biological Temple  within which
it may reside , Bahau lahs utterances regarding the end of conflict or more
stringly that it is "forbidden" take on more force. Those who perpetrate
violence or more generaly injustice towards any human being are endangering
the state of their soul . The ethical significance of Baha u llah adopting a
feminine persona - consider the Wronged one  - ( a station btw which I
consider another example of the feminine persona )  is that women as a group
have been the recipients of horrors shared with men but also ones particular
to their being women . Bahau llah by asdopting the femnine persona redeems
the age old injustices perpetrated against this half of the human race .
This is not to suggest that men have not also been harmed . However it has
not been women as a group who have perpetrated injustice towards men . The
same cannot be said of men .

By adopting a feminine persona Bahau llah identifies with the non
recognition  that has been the lot of women throughout history and this non
recognition parallels the life of the Prophet .  As Im have said before the
"Great Reversal " .

A further example of Bahau lah and the feminine *voice *  which is
literally sprinkled througout the Revelation has to do with the findings of
Carol Gilligan and her associates. She has found that men "tend" to process
moral issues from different perspectives than do women . men tend to use what
she cals an ethic of rights (or justice in her recent work) . Women tend to
do the same on the bais of an ethic of care and compassion ( or relationship
in her recent work .)

Throughout the writings of Bahau llah one finds continual evidence in His
language of this ethic of care / compassion / relationship.  In the best
contemporary sense of language and moral philosophy Bahau llah adopts the
feminine *voice * in His  ethical exhortations and descritptions of reality .
He also uses a masculine voice . That is not at issue si i choose not to
focus on it at the moment . For those who want *specific * examples of Bahau
llah speaking in the feminine *voice * a la Gilligan et al  you will have to
come to Bosch for my BahaMaiden presentation.
OR

in the meantime read Iqan pgs 59- 61 Gleanings pg319 -322 and279 -284 as
wel as285. Seven Valleys esp. valey of love, knowledge and unity and to many
of the Arabic Hidden words for me to comment on at the moment .   Friends ,
the feminine persona and voice of Bahau lah is literally sprinkled throughout
the Writings . Then one would expect that from a universal Manifestation  who
is going to *recognize *  women; and teach both men and women a new and
universal language of *Spirit * which includes and preserves both masculine
and feminine *voices* - and - shows us a world that transcends them both .

I had hoped to elaborate on all this before Bosch but my current economic
situation has talen my mental energires in more pedestrian  channels .
Inshallah in the next few weeks I will get to it more fully . I have been out
of town the past couple of days or would have responded to this query sooner
. :)

warm regards,
terry

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 14:41:41 JST
From: "Stephen R. Friberg"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Stereotyping

Dear Friends:

I note that Friberg can not even cleanse himself.  How dare he criticize
others!

Claiming to perceive stereotypically male responses on Talisman, he
himself offers up this gem: "The women on Talisman constantly complain
. . . ".

Perhaps he should take some of his own medicine!

Yours sincerely,
An anonymous critic.

=END=

Date: Wed, 7 Feb 1996 22:35:25 -0700 (MST)
To: Ahang Rabbani
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: The Tablet of Universe

Ahang jan--

Was this translation the same version of Lawh-i Aflakiyyih you posted mid
last year, or is this a revised one? I still can't get enough of this
particular piece of the Master's.

Nima

**************************************************************
* Paradox is a characteristic of truth. What communis opinio *
* has of truth is surely no more than an elementary deposit  *
* of generalizing partial understanding, related to truth    *
* even as sulphurous fumes are to lightning.                 *
*                                                            *
* --From the correspondence of Count Paul von Wartenburg     *
*   and Wilhelm Dilthey                                      *
**************************************************************

=END=

Date: Wed, 7 Feb 96 21:57 PST
To: "Dan Orey"
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Dear Dr Burl
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>Dear Dr. Burl - is there any truth to the rumor that "Euthanasia" is a
>shortened term for "youth in Asia"?
***
No.  It is a colloquial corruption of "Ethan Asian" -- a Korean
chain store that sells cheap knock-offs of Early American furniture.
***
>parents will be able to send their teenage sons and
>daughters for a year or more away from home? Isn't this what we have the
>Maxwell School for?
***
The Maxwell Baha'i School is where (a) wealthy Baha'is send their juvenile
delinquent children in hopes that wearing a uniform and freezing their
behinds off in British Columbia will bring the kid to some sort of maturity.
This of course, never works. The kids graduate with a degree in chain
smoking, straight edge music, and psychedelic experimentation and then
either go on a year of service to some hell hole in a third world country
which *does* bring them to some sort of maturity, or they just hang out and
get weird in some hippie grotto, crash pad, meth lab, or espresso bar (b)
poor Baha'is with high hopes for their pecious young send them to Maxwell
believing that wearing a uniform and freezing their behinds off in British
Columbia will bring the sweet young thing even closer to Baha'u'llah.
Instead, they get closer to the juvenile delinquents. Think of Maxwell as
Blackboard Jungle with obligatory prayers.

Any further questions, ask Sandy Fotos who is  getting on a plane to track
down her sweet little Helen, a recent Maxwell Graduate, who was last seen
with a Lucky Strike dangling from her lips, having the Last Supper tattood

Dr. Burl sent his daughter to Maxwell and discovered that it cost approx.
500 times more than tuition if you count all the collect calls from your
children complaining that a six-pack of Diet Coke costs \$6.00 in Canada and
the phone call to tell you about it costs \$6.50 and they call you in the
middle of the day collect just to say "I miss you, send money."  Dr. Burl's
daughter did learn a great deal about the Faith while at Maxwell. What I
really wanted her to learn was how to clean her room.  My expectations were
obviously unrealistic.
***
Probably clueless, but tastefully dressed in Sacramento

Yes, that is the Official Moto of the California State Capitol.

Dr. Burl

>

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 05:52:42 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, "QUANTA DAWNLIGHT" ,
belove@sover.net
Subject: RE: Male and female attributes

Manifestation of the Creator/God. Be patient with me. I'm passing through an
androgynous stage. But it's just a phase. I'll grow out of it.

Androgynous persons are those that look like they have aspects of both the
male and female genders. They're inherently confusing to look upon. That
clearly does not apply to the Manifestation or at least to the recent ones for
whom we have historical records. Gender and sex are not the same thing. They
are usually congruent but they don't have to be. Except in the exceptionally
rare case of a true hermaphrodite, a person's sex is part of their genetic
fabric. It cannot be changed in humans even though surgery and medicine can
change some secondary sexual characteristics and the cosmetic functionality of
others. Gender can only be completely understood within a social context.
While a small part of it might be imprinted, most gender behavior is the
result of education and socialization. It has not been absolutely fixed
throughout history. It is even changeable. The Baha'i faith does not teach
that gender or sex is fundamental to the nature of God. The pronouns in
original and also translated scripture are simply linguistic conventions. Does
anyone want to argue that God is a male? Not likely. It is unproveable. God is
unimaginable, not to be comprehended, a pure mystery.

I know people who have adapted the affectation of referring to God as She.
They know it shocks a few people and they enjoy that. It's also
consciousness-raising and not that bad an idea. It knocks people out of their
boxes so it's kind of appealing. If I didn't feel that politically correct
language is so artificial (read: annoying) I might do it too.

How do you determine gender? Have men always had short hair and women long
hair, for example? Of course not. By apparel or color of its fabric? By what
adornment? By what criteria? In what society and what era? All of that is
non-essential.

You said: To refer to Manifestationhood as a state of being, co-existent with
the spiritual reality of a human,  well, that seems to be news.

But I don't understand what you mean by that. Maybe I was fuzzy in my
language. I don't think I said that. I was taught that there are three levels
of creation. Two of them are contingent and one is not. There is the
Creator/God, the Manifestation of God, and the rest of us. We are only
connected by the Holy Spirit. I am only aware of the existence of the highest
level because it has a reflection (Manifestation). It wishes to be known by
way of that reflection. Its reflection is in the form of a unique individual
who can be either biologically male or female. God is sanctified above all
attributes as the prayer says. That tells me that God does not have a
biological sex or a specific gender. Once again, gender is just a way of
grouping a set of characteristics that mostly pertain to males or females in a
particular society. It's meaningless in terms of characterizing God. It serves
no real purpose.

I'm having tremendous difficulty trying to express my ideas. I can't
comprehend how the Manifestation of God can represent only one gender. It
doesn't make any sense. What purpose would it serve? I give up. I'll try again
later. Someone help me here. Dr. Burl? Sandy? Anyone? Help! We must stop
mixing up linguistic conventions with deeper realities. This is lower case and
that is in caps so it means thus and so. The things I've been reading the last
few days!

Hannah

MAMBNT (middle-aged mutant Baha'i ninja turtle)
============
"'Where do you get your ideas?' has always been the question I'm most
confronted with . . . I'm afraid the answer is much more mundane: I don't know
where my ideas come from. I will admit, however, that one key ingredient is
caffeine." -- Gary Larson (FarSide)

----------
From: 	belove@sover.net
Sent: 	Wednesday, 07 February, 1996 7:15 AM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu; QUANTA DAWNLIGHT; Hannah E. Reinstein
Subject: 	RE: Male and female attributes

On Wed, 7 Feb 96 07:43:07 UT  Hannah E. Reinstein wrote:
"Nonetheless, the Manifestation, as Mirror of the
>Divine, has
>no gender and therefore neither does the Holy Spirit, which is the
delivery
>medium of written revelation. Man and Woman do not mean the same
things to
>Baha'u'llah that they do to us."
>

This speaks to a sharp distinction between Manifestationhood and
Humanity.  Such a distinction seemed to be implied by Jesus Christ
but seems to be blurred in popular representations.

Can this be supported by Scripture? I mean the whole thing, that the
Manifestation is separate from the Guy and that the Manifestation is
without Gender.

Also, big difference here between genderless and androgynous. Which
do you mean?

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/07/96
Time: 07:15:21

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 00:41:48 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Baha'u'llah's feminine diction

I think there are many places where Baha'u'llah adopts a self-referential
feminine diction in Arabic (which shows gender in a way Persian does not).

One example that comes to mind is the beginning of the Tablet of Ahmad.
The "nightingale" is actually in Arabic the female Dove of Paradise (hadhihi
warqatu'l-firdawsi), and *She* singeth (tughanni) upon the twigs of the
Tree of Eternity, *She* proclaims (tubashshir) to the sincere ones, and
so forth throughout the first paragraph.  Baha'u'llah here speaks of
Himself with feminine grammar, because of the referent of the female Dove
as the symbol of His Self (Self/nafs is also feminine and when He refers
to His "self" he likewise uses feminine grammar).

cheers   Juan

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 06:08:07 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, belove@sover.net
Subject: RE: humor, sex, fuzzy logic.

For those of you not on my Humor List, here's the punctuation post:

The importance of correct punctuation...

From: Games Magazine (1984)

Dear John:
I want a man who knows what love is all about. You are generous, kind,
thoughtful. People who are not like you admit to being useless and
inferior.
You have ruined me for other men. I yearn for you. I have no feelings
whatsoever when we're apart. I can be forever happy--will you let me be
yours?
Gloria

Dear John:
I want a man who knows what love is. All about you are generous, kind,
thoughtful people, who are not like you. Admit to being useless and
inferior.
You have ruined me. For other men, I yearn. For you, I have no feelings
whatsoever. When we're apart, I can be forever happy. Will you let me be?
Yours,
Gloria

The rest of your thoughtful post I'll answer tomorrow. Too sleepy tonight to
be coherent.

Hannah

The Artist Formerly Known As Cary  :-)

----------
From: 	belove@sover.net
Sent: 	Wednesday, 07 February, 1996 8:33 AM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu; Hannah E. Reinstein
Subject: 	humor, sex, fuzzy logic.

Dear Hannah/Cary,

The punctuation posting is a real gem. Thanks so much.

I teach a course in communication and I was trying to explain
punctuation to them and this is a perfect teaching tool.

More tomorrow... same Bat-time. Same Bat-station.................whoosh......

=END=

Date: Wed, 7 Feb 96 22:10 PST
To: "Dan Orey"
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Dear Dr Burl
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>Dear Dr. Burl - is there any truth to the rumor that "Euthanasia" is a
>shortened term for "youth in Asia"?
***
No.  It is a colloquial corruption of "Ethan Asian" -- a Korean
chain store that sells cheap knock-offs of Early American furniture.
***
>parents will be able to send their teenage sons and
>daughters for a year or more away from home? Isn't this what we have the
>Maxwell School for?
***
The Maxwell Baha'i School is where (a) wealthy Baha'is send their juvenile
delinquent children in hopes that wearing a uniform and freezing their
behinds off in British Columbia will bring the kid to some sort of maturity.
This of course, never works. The kids graduate with a degree in chain
smoking, straight edge music, and psychedelic experimentation and then
either go on a year of service to some hell hole in a third world country
which *does* bring them to some sort of maturity, or they just hang out and
get weird in some hippie grotto, crash pad, meth lab, or espresso bar (b)
poor Baha'is with high hopes for their pecious young send them to Maxwell
believing that wearing a uniform and freezing their behinds off in British
Columbia will bring the sweet young thing even closer to Baha'u'llah.
Instead, they get closer to the juvenile delinquents. Think of Maxwell as
Blackboard Jungle with obligatory prayers.

Any further questions, ask Sandy Fotos who is  getting on a plane to track
down her sweet little Helen, a recent Maxwell Graduate, who was last seen
with a Lucky Strike dangling from her lips, having the Last Supper tattood

Dr. Burl sent his daughter to Maxwell and discovered that it cost approx.
500 times more than tuition if you count all the collect calls from your
children complaining that a six-pack of Diet Coke costs \$6.00 in Canada and
the phone call to tell you about it costs \$6.50 and they call you in the
middle of the day collect just to say "I miss you, send money."  Dr. Burl's
daughter did learn a great deal about the Faith while at Maxwell. What I
really wanted her to learn was how to clean her room.  My expectations were
obviously unrealistic.
***
Probably clueless, but tastefully dressed in Sacramento

Yes, that is the Official Moto of the California State Capitol.

Dr. Burl

>

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

From: SFotos@eworld.com
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 00:58:21 -0800
To: burlb@bmi.net
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Deeeer Dr. Whatevah

Burl wrote:
----------------------------- Begin Original Text
-----------------------------

The Maxwell Baha'i School is where (a) wealthy Baha'is send their juvenile
delinquent children in hopes that wearing a uniform and freezing their
behinds off in British Columbia will bring the kid to some sort of maturity.
This of course, never works. The kids graduate with a degree in chain
smoking, straight edge music, and psychedelic experimentation and then
either go on a year of service to some hell hole in a third world country
which *does* bring them to some sort of maturity, or they just hang out and
get weird in some hippie grotto, crash pad, meth lab, or espresso bar.

>snip<

Any further questions, ask Sandy Fotos who is  getting on a plane to track
down her sweet little Helen, a recent Maxwell Graduate, who was last seen
with a Lucky Strike dangling from her lips, having the Last Supper tattood
----------------------------- End Original Text -----------------------------

Yes,  I too spent enough to build an entire Arc terrace on Maxwell tuitions.
The only good thing was that it was less than the international school here.

Meanwhile I'm thinking of getting a tatoo myself.

Signed,
Angst is not enough

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 02:51:06 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Baha'i & the Perennial Philosophy

Talizens--

Recently when I made the claim that the Baha'i Faith was no more than
Sufism and esoteric Shi'ism universalized, I seem to have rattled certain
sensibilities. The only person who truly understood what I was alluding
to was, of course, my soul-brother in Omaha, Terry. Mark also understood
what I was talking about with his reference to my *metalogic*.

Now what does "universalized" mean in my context; what is the universal
level I am talking about, phenomenologically? According to the
Perennialists (Guenon, Coomaraswamy, Schuon, et al), universalism
pertains to the inner, esoteric and vertically timeless dimension of
spiritual truth, as the outer, exoteric to a particular manifestational
_form_ occuring horizontally in historical time, as it were. In other
words, there is, what the perennialists call, the Primordial Tradition
(esoteric) (Baha'u'llah's "...Ancient Faith of God, Eternal in the Past,
Eternal in the Future...") which historically or horizontally permutates
like so many lights refracted through a prism (exoteric) deriving from
the One light. Dispensational norms and laws are the exoteric; the
dharmic kernel and eternal metaphysical truth at the heart of all the

Concomitantly, there are certain inner archetypal features to the
exoteric manifestational form of which are highlighted in each religion:
i.e. notions of redemption, grace, transcendece and immanence, chosen
people, covenant, three-in-one, etc. Now according to us perennialists
the inner dynamic of progressive revelation entails the following: That
each new dispensation in turn necessarily exoterize what was previously
esoteric while interiorizing the previously exoteric and transforming it.
Schuon says for example, that:

What characterizes esoterism to the very extent that it is absolute, is
that on contact with a dogmatic system, it universalizes the symbol or
the religious concept on the one hand, and interiorizes it on the other;
the particular or the limited is recognized as the manifestation of the
principal and the transcendent, and this in its turn reveals itself as
immanent. Christianity universalizes the notion of "Israel" while
interiorizing the Divine Law; it replaces circumcision of the flesh by
that of the heart, the "Chosen People" by a Church that includes men
every provenance, and outward prescriptions by inward virtues, all of
this having in view, not obediance to the Law, but the Love of God and,
in the last analysis, mystical union. These principles or these
transpositions could hardly have been unknown to the Essenes, and
possibly other Jewish initiates, but the originality of Christianity is
that it made a religion of them and sacrificed them to Mosaic formalism.
(Frithjof Schuon, _Esoterism as Principle and Way_ Perennial Books
(London: 1990), p. 37).

Now take Islam. Metaphysically Islam exotericizes the inner meaning of
the mystery of the trinity (which in itself is a highly esoteric doctrine
but is exotericized as a creed) by insisting on the absolute tawhid
(unity) of God while also positing His necessary immanence: i.e. "...we
shall show them Our signs in the horizons and in themselves..."
"..nothing is like unto him.." "...closer to you than your life-vein..." etc.
In Sufism, which as far as all of us perennialists are concerned is one
of the two penultimate forms of *quintessential Islam* (the other being
Twelver Shi'ism) the universal message of the Quran is taken to its
ultimate realization, namely through *taslim* or *Islam*
(surrender/submission) to the Real (al-Haqq). As such this
surrender/submission is existential (wujudi) in scope and not merely
confessional (the fundamental limitation of exotericism as a way of
life); gnosis (ma'arifa/irfan) is what is sought in this way of being and
not merely dogmatic belief (i'tiqad) -- not even faith (iman) works but
tasting (dhawq) is sought for since faith is also limited by its
unidimensional form -- faith in-itself can *only* capture one possible
form or object of belief at a time.

The existential nature of submission/surrender in Sufism means that it is
universal, and simultaneously universalizing of Islam as such: i.e. "My
heart can take on any form: a meadow for gazelles; for the idols sacred
ground, the Tablets of the Torah, the Scrolls of the Quran...etc" (Ibn
`Arabi, eleventh poem of the _Tarjuman al-Ashwaq_). Therefore in this
scheme all paths lead to the One; faith and infidelity are the same (that
is, when you've reached the summit); and all sanctifying paths are true
since there is *nothing but* the *Presence of Being* or tawhid.

Shi'ism is slightly a different phenomenon and manifests another
quintessential form of Islam, namely salvation. The function of Shi'ism
is fundamentally christic in nature since its very raison d'etre is
salvific: i.e one must know the Imam of ones age.

Anyway...this post is getting too long, I've probably bored you all to
sleep, but this is what I mean about the Baha'i Faith being universalized
Sufism and esoteric Shi'ism -- I am strictly speaking on the level of
archetypes and using a standpoint epistemology. A promise: if you can all
wait that long, the perennial aspect of the Baha'i world-view will be
fully dealt with in my article for Babi & Baha'i Studies Volume 10:
Mysticism, Metaphysics & Cosmological Perspectives.

Nima

**************************************************************
* Paradox is a characteristic of truth. What communis opinio *
* has of truth is surely no more than an elementary deposit  *
* of generalizing partial understanding, related to truth    *
* even as sulphurous fumes are to lightning.                 *
*                                                            *
* --From the correspondence of Count Paul von Wartenburg     *
*   and Wilhelm Dilthey                                      *
**************************************************************

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Thu,  8 Feb 96 06:51:57 PST
Subject: apologies
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear all,

Sorry but for some reason I was receiving messages that the mail I
sent was being returned undelivered and I've re-posted a number of my
letters. And now it appears that people are getting some of the
messages. I don't want it to appear like I'm nagging.

I said, I don't want it to appear like I'm nagging.

Love,

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/08/96
Time: 06:51:57

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 09:19:31 -0500 (EST)
From: jwalbrid
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Apology

Friends:

I inadvertantly sent out a private flame out over Talisman.  It was
intended for a couple of individuals and was not very temperate anyway.

It would be a much welcome sop to my injured dignity if you would all
forget I ever wrote it, erase it from your systems, and think of me as I
am when I am not feeling dispeptic.

This plea for indulgence applies particularly to those I particularly
offended.

Yours awkwardly,
john walbridge

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 07:54:59 -0700 (MST)
From: Eric Indiogine
To: "K. Paul Johnson"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Borg and the Baha'is

Interesting posting Paul!

On Wed, 7 Feb 1996, K. Paul Johnson wrote:
> latest scholarship.  Am getting my feet wet with Marcus Borg's
> Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time.  He makes four positive
> assertions about the historical Jesus that tend to align him
> with Baha'u'llah, and two negative assertions that definitely
> put him at odds with what Baha'is have perceived him to be:
>
> 1. The historical Jesus was a *spirit person*, one of those
> figures in human history with an experiential awareness of the
> reality of God.
> 2. Jesus was a *teacher of wisdom* who regularly used the
> classic forms of wisdom speech (parables, and memorable short
> sayings known as aphorisms) to teach a subversive and
> alternative wisdom.
> 3. Jesus was a *social prophet,* similar to the classical
> prophets of ancient Israel.  As such, he criticized the elites
> (economic, political and religious) of his time, was an
> advocate of an alternative social vision, and was often in
> conflict with authorities.
> 4. Jesus was a *movement founder* who brought into being a
> Jewish renewal or revitalization movement that challenged and
> shattered the social boundaries of his day...
>
> Well, all these four characterizations resonate with aspects of
> Baha'u'llah's life, and to the extent that they fit, I'm
> perfectly happy with Baha'u'llah.  BUT:

So far, so very good.  My becoming Bahai was stimulated by Biblical
research. It is a long story, which I will spare you. I would like to
disagree with your two following points:

> 1. Jesus was nonmessianic in his self-understanding, said
> nothing about being the Messiah or Son of God in some special
> sense.

That should not be a great problem for us.  I think personally that we
could make an even stronger case for Baha'u'llah being the Messiah. He
was also of Davidic descend and His coming to the Holy Land was closely
intertwined with the national restoration of Israel.  Indeed the Bahai
World Center with it's Holy Places would practically not exist were it
not for the State of Israel.

> 2. Jesus was noneschatological, not expected the coming of the
> Kingdom of God as an earth-shattering event.  The growing
> scholarly consensus to this effect is a recent phenomenon.

I see no problem here either.  We Bahais indeed believe that the Kingdom
of God started its appearance in 1844AD and that it is a gradual
unfolding of events.

> Since Baha'u'llah was not only messianic and eschatological but
> firmly insistent on seeing Jesus in this light, if the scholars
> are right they have pulled the rug out from under the Baha'is.

I do think that you can make these statements about Baha'u'llah without
giving us some evidence.  Personally I have not seen but confirmations to
the Faith from Christian scholarly research.

Bye,

Eric Indiogine (sindiogi@nmsu.edu), Dept. Civil, Agricultural,
and Geological Engineering, New Mexico State University,
Las Cruces, New Mexico, U.S.A.

## True loss is for him whose days have been ##
## spent in utter ignorance of his self ##
-* Baha'u'llah, Words of Wisdom #21 *-

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 23:23:40 JST
From: "Stephen R. Friberg"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, friberg@will.brl.ntt.jp
Subject: ibn al Arabi, questions for Nima

Dear Nima:

Do you remember the books that you suggested to me to read when I visited you
in Albuquerque?  I just checked what I bought, and was delighted and
surprised that I have Chittick's "The Sufi Path of Knowledge!"
Anyway, the complete list is below:

Claude Addas, "Quest for the Red Sulphur: The Life of Ibn Arabi,"
(Islamic Texts Society, Cambridge, 1993).
William C. Chittick, "The Sufi Path of Knowledge" (SUNY Press,
Albany, 1989).
Majid Fakhry "A History of Islamic Philosophy, 2nd Edition,"
(Columbia University Press, New York, 1983).
Toshihiko Izutsu, "Creation and the Timeless Order of Things," (White
Cloud Press, Ashland, Oregon, 1994).
Roy Mottahedeh, "The Mantle of the Prophet," (Pantheon, New York,
1985).
Seyyed Hossein Nasr, "Three Muslim Sages," (Caravan, New York, 1964).

I found William C. Chittick's "Imaginal Worlds: Ibn al Arabi and the Problem
of Religious Diversity" (SUNY, Albany, 1994) last week in a Tokyo bookstore
(Kinokuniya).  So far, it's my favorite, as it addresses many themes I
consider to be important.  Could you comment on some of the points that
Chittick in his introduction makes about Ibn Arabi's thought?

The diversity of our world's religions and ethnological backgrounds makes
acceptance of diversity very important.  One of Ibn Arabi's major
contributions, according to Chittick, is his enthusiastic embrace of
diversity.

Nima, would it be correct to say that al Arabi viewed diversity itself, be it
in thinking, philosophy, religion, or culture, as a gift of God?

Chittick notes that religious pluralism, religious freedom, and cultural
diversity can cause problems, and that the "perception of difference,
diversity, and even antagonism is only intensified by the academic study of
religion."  The bewilderment caused by this diversity "is accentuated by the
great variety of methodological approaches that ... make important
contributions to our understanding of religion's nature, but are firmly
rooted in the experience of modernity undergone by the West.  ...  modern
scholarship -- in contrast to traditional Islamic scholarship -- does not
presuppose an ultimate reality that unifies all of existence, a clear purpose
to human life, a moral dimension to both human activity and the natural
world, the divine origin of religion, or the truth of scripture."

In contrast, ibn al Arabi "... acknowledges the validity of every mode of
human knowing, and at the same time he recognizes the limitations of every
mode.  Thus, he considers every perspective, every school of thought, and
every religion as both true and false."   For ibn al Arabi, rational
investigation and prophetic revelation are both ways of gaining
knowledge.  A third way, "unveiling" (kashf, which I take to be
mystical in character) also is important to his thought.

Nima, there seems to be a very important difference between modern
Does modern scholarship miss or ignore important aspects of the world
because of its rejection of everything but rationality?

Chittick portrays the West as following Averroes, engaged in developing
the kinds of explanations where it is finally discovered that God is
expendable.  The result "has been an ever-increasing fragmentation of human
knowledge, with a total divorce between science and ethics."  Islam, in the
main, followed al Arabi and "the result was a harmony between reason and
spiritual perception.  Muslim intellectuals were rarely able to conceive of
nature without seeing its roots in God. (Nature) cannot be studied without an
investigation of the moral and ethical demands that this rooting entails."

Nima, do you agree with this?

I'm excited by these statements, in part because it is what I have
long thought to be true: the Europeans originally borrowed their
philosophy and science from Islam, but rejected its spirituality,
thus insuring a conflict between science and religion that continues
to this day.   Of course, this raises the next question.  Were ibn
al Arabi's answers *too good*, thus stifling the growth of philosophy
and science in Islamic countries?

Yours sincerely,
Stephen R. Friberg

P.S.  I am beginning to find al Arabi quite to my inclinations, and Chittick
as well!

=END=

From: Alethinos@aol.com
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 10:12:04 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Apology

Dear Mr. Walbridge:

Wrote what?

jim harrison

Alethinos@aol.com

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Thu, 8 Feb 1996 10:56:13 EST
Subject:       I'll be back

Dearest friends,

I must admit that I am on the lower side of life among homosapiens.
I enjoy being with nature these days.  I saw a red cardinal hopping
and skipping on the branches of the oak tree on my back yard the
other day and converse with it from my kitchen window. Yes!! you
little defiant and brave soul, walk on the ice in spite of the cold.
I too need to learn to do that in a spiritual sense. Walk on the icy
faces of cold homosapiens. Hop and skip, tickle their noses and make
them laugh whether they want it or not. Why people have these
lifeless stares at one another these days? Or, am I just noticing it?

We are flowers in one garden. Yeah! wilted and in need of water and
sun! I am tired of knowledge. The roots of the Tree of Life is
flooded. We need the sunshine (love) to come out and let it evaporate
or let the ground soak it down deeper. So, I am tired of words,
words, and words again and again. I am tired of meetings, plans.
I am tired of them all. That's the way I feel right now.
I will not proof read this and I will send it right now.

love, love, love

quanta

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 10:23:58 -0600 (CST)
From: Robert Lee Green
To: "Marguerite K. Gipson"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Welcoming & Affirming Gays

On Thu, 8 Feb 1996, Marguerite K. Gipson wrote:

We are never tested beyond our limits.

------------------------------------------------
|  "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: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 08:18:49 -0800
To: Robert Lee Green
From: margreet@margreet.seanet.com (Marguerite K. Gipson)
Subject: Re: Welcoming & Affirming Gays
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

Hello All,   Gads... Oh, my, oh my...  I just have a question, and I would
like some clarity,--Thanks,  My issue-- is that as a single, female I have a
"law" to abide by.  Called the Law of Chasity.   It not only make perfect
sense-- What man wants a women who has slept with every Tom, Dick, Harry,
George, Jeff etc... and it especially rings true to this day and age of
diseases that can kill--

I certainly do not want a man who has a *history* longer than his bank
account...

but what I am hearing is that for now, I am  a single female, abiding by the
chasity law... but I can *switch* to the other side just to have sex with
another female, and that would make it OK,  because of the *switch*?   Trust
me, ain't no way that will ever happen... I don't care how 'bad' the men
are, or how scarce they become...

I don't think so.

And thru all this, no one has mention any thing about spiritual tests.  We
all have them...  And some are just blessed with the spiritual test of being
'gay' or 'lesbian'.   And that is what they have to deal with, just like
some of us have to deal with other 'tests' going on in our lives.     That
testing gives us strength, growth, renewal, a new 'closer to God' feeling
and what have you...   We are never tested beyond our limits.

I agree with Philip on this  Thank you Philip.

Warmly, Margreet

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 11:45:19 -0500 (EST)
From: Stephen Johnson
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: KI pp.35 - 37

The term "suns" hath many a time been applied
in the writings of the "immaculate Souls" unto the
Prophets of God, those luminous Emblems of Detachment.
Among those writings are the following
words recorded in the "Prayer of Nudbih":+F1
"Whither are gone the resplendent Suns?  Whereunto
have departed those shining Moons and
sparkling Stars?"  Thus, it hath become evident
that the terms "sun," "moon," and "stars" primarily
signify the Prophets of God, the saints, and
their companions, those Luminaries, the light of
Whose knowledge hath shed illumination upon the
worlds of the visible and the invisible.
In another sense, by these terms is intended the
divines of the former Dispensation, who live in
the days of the subsequent Revelations, and who
hold the reins of religion in their grasp.  If these
divines be illumined by the light of the latter Revelation
they will be acceptable unto God, and will
shine with a light everlasting.  Otherwise, they will
be declared as darkened, even though to outward
seeming they be leaders of men, inasmuch as belief
and unbelief, guidance and error, felicity and misery,
light and darkness, are all dependent upon the
sanction of Him Who is the Day-star of Truth.
Whosoever among the divines of every age receiveth,
in the Day of Reckoning, the testimony of faith
from the Source of true knowledge, he verily becometh
the recipient of learning, of divine favour,
and of the light of true understanding.  Otherwise,
he is branded as guilty of folly, denial, blasphemy,
and oppression.
It is evident and manifest unto every discerning
observer that even as the light of the star fadeth
before the effulgent splendour of the sun, so doth
the luminary of earthly knowledge, of wisdom,
and understanding vanish into nothingness when
brought face to face with the resplendent glories
of the Sun of Truth, the Day-star of divine enlightenment.

+F1 "Lamentation" attributed to the Twelfth &Imam.

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Thu,  8 Feb 96 10:38:31 PST
Subject: fem/mas imagery
To: TLCULHANE@aol.com, talisman@indiana.edu

Terry,

I really enjoyed your posting on all the reasons why Baha'ullah might
have used the feminine persona in certain of His writings.
And I was especially interested in your reference to Carol Gilligans
model of ethical thinking.

Two points.

I wonder where you might add Jung's idea of the transcendent function
Let me clarify my question and review what I understand by
transcendent function.

Jung observed that we humans always have a relationship with our own
unconcious mind. He thought that when we are thinking, musing, making
decisions, going about our day, taking account of ourselves, when we
do all those things, it is like there are two entities in our
subjectivity. One entity was our self identity, our ego, our "I," or
our "me."  The other entity was larger and included everything else
inside.  Freud called that entity the id, or the "it," meaning, that
stuff that isn't "me."  Jung called it the anima or the animus.

He was saying that if we experience our "me" as male, then we
experience our "other" as female, and vice versa.

The was in important way Jung build on the initial insights from
Freud. Freud started thinking of the "other," as alien, and
de-personalized, an "it," or "id." For Jung, the other was personal
and an entity that you could come to know and love, a "She," or a
"He." Also, the other was vast and extended beyond our individual
lives into the collective life of our genus, our species and perhaps
our planet. And yet, at the same time, our Other was a Living
Presence we could come to love and would have to come to love and
eventually marry.

And here I wonder how I might understand the inner maidens of
Baha'ullah's Manifestation, if I also understand these ideas from
Jung.  For example, would Jung's theory  predict that, were a
Manifestation to be a female, then the messenger and voice and
imagery She would speak would be Male?  Is this a totally impudent
question?  (I still say that the next Manifestation will be a
Couple.)

But moving on.

The marriage of the I and the Soul produces a third being.  According
to Jung this new form is the goal of spirituality. When the Inner
Male and the Inner Female unity a new entity emerges, a transcendent
one.

the four essences of subjectivity were balanced and harmonious, a
fifth essence arose, a quint-essence. The quintessence was a
manifestation of spirituality.

I suspect that all this has something to do with the current thread
on the feminine and masculine imagery but I'm not sure how to trace
it from here.

Love

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/08/96
Time: 10:38:31

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Thu,  8 Feb 96 10:06:19 PST
Subject: RE: Male and female attributes
To: talisman@indiana.edu, QUANTA DAWNLIGHT ,
belove@sover.net, "Hannah E. Reinstein"

On Thu, 8 Feb 96 05:52:42 UT  Hannah E. Reinstein wrote:
of the
>Manifestation of the Creator/God. Be patient with me. I'm passing
through an
>androgynous stage. But it's just a phase. I'll grow out of it.
>

Hannah, it's been years since I was reading in this area but, as I
remember, androgyny was said to be a phase one grew into, a kind of
fulfillment in which it was possible to identify with what is
commonly called "both masculine and feminine sides."  In more
ordinary language that might mean that, as a man, in maturity you
begin to feel comfortable acting in ways that  you used to avoid
because they were feminine.  And also, as a woman, you begin to feel
comfortable acting in ways you eschewed because you considered them
to be "masculine." So, in the old days in the United States when sex
roles were more rigidly deliniated than now, a mid-life or later man
might freely delight in fussy over grandchildren and in being very
"motherly" toward them. Or he might delight in nursing his wife
through a bad cold.  And an older woman might take delight in
building a business or being a tough bargainer.

Androgyny meant that you would be free to realize parts of yourself

It wasn't merely a matter of outward appearances.

>Androgynous persons are those that look like they have aspects of
both the
>male and female genders. They're inherently confusing to look upon.
That
>clearly does not apply to the Manifestation or at least to the
recent ones for
>whom we have historical records.

Clearly Manifestations are a Sacred Mystery and I don't know what we
can learn from them as far as this matter is concerned. I suspect we

Gender and sex are not the same thing. They
>are usually congruent but they don't have to be.

Also this idea of congruency or non-congruency is, I now suspect, a
misleading idea. I'm not yet sure what is a better way to think about
it.

Except in the exceptionally
>rare case of a true hermaphrodite, a person's sex is part of their
genetic
>fabric. It cannot be changed in humans even though surgery and
medicine can
>change some secondary sexual characteristics and the cosmetic
functionality of
>others.

The point I'm raising here is that sex, even sex definition, the hard
wired part, is not clearly either this or that. Even sex definition
has a fuzzy boundary in the physical world. It is interesting to some
and unfortunate for others that the human community is so intolerant
of these gray areas.

...snip...

>You said: To refer to Manifestationhood as a state of being,
co-existent with
>the spiritual reality of a human,  well, that seems to be news.
>
>But I don't understand what you mean by that. Maybe I was fuzzy in
my
>language. I don't think I said that. I was taught that there are
three levels
>of creation. Two of them are contingent and one is not

.... Here, Hannah, is where I am raising this question about fuzzy
logic. But maybe I need to ask it to a broader audience.

If all the material and biological world, the Nasut, if you will show
fuzzy boundaries.  If there are no sharp either/or boundaries in the
world we live in, if all boundaries are semi-permeable, why would we
assume that the levels of manifestationhood are any different?

It's a big question.

>I'm having tremendous difficulty trying to express my ideas. I can't

>comprehend how the Manifestation of God can represent only one
gender. It
>doesn't make any sense. What purpose would it serve? I give up. I'll
try again
>later. Someone help me here. Dr. Burl? Sandy? Anyone? Help! We must
stop
>mixing up linguistic conventions with deeper realities. This is
lower case and
>that is in caps so it means thus and so. The things I've been
>few days!
>
>Hannah
>
>MAMBNT (middle-aged mutant Baha'i ninja turtle)
>============
>"'Where do you get your ideas?' has always been the question I'm
most
>confronted with . . . I'm afraid the answer is much more mundane: I
don't know
>where my ideas come from. I will admit, however, that one key
ingredient is
>caffeine." -- Gary Larson (FarSide)
>
>----------
>From: 	belove@sover.net
>Sent: 	Wednesday, 07 February, 1996 7:15 AM
>To: 	talisman@indiana.edu; QUANTA DAWNLIGHT; Hannah E. Reinstein
>Subject: 	RE: Male and female attributes
>
>
>On Wed, 7 Feb 96 07:43:07 UT  Hannah E. Reinstein wrote:
>"Nonetheless, the Manifestation, as Mirror of the
>>Divine, has
>>no gender and therefore neither does the Holy Spirit, which is the
>delivery
>>medium of written revelation. Man and Woman do not mean the same
>things to
>>Baha'u'llah that they do to us."
>>
>
>
>This speaks to a sharp distinction between Manifestationhood and
>Humanity.  Such a distinction seemed to be implied by Jesus Christ
>but seems to be blurred in popular representations.
>
>
>Can this be supported by Scripture? I mean the whole thing, that the
>Manifestation is separate from the Guy and that the Manifestation is
>without Gender.
>
>Also, big difference here between genderless and androgynous. Which
>do you mean?
>
>Philip
>
>
>
>-------------------------------------
>Name: Philip Belove
>E-mail: belove@sover.net
>Date: 02/07/96
>Time: 07:15:21
>
>This message was sent by Chameleon
>-------------------------------------
>Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
>Einstein
>
>

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/08/96
Time: 10:06:20

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A. Einstein

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 12:35:00 EWT
From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
Subject: apology
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear friends,

John and I became engaged during Ayyam-i-ha in 1972.  We were married 3 months
later, according to Baha'i law.  After so many years of marriage I believe that
two people, while perhaps being extremely different in temperament and style,
are never quite separate individuals.  Though John and I are opposites in so
many respects, still we are oddly a continuation of one another as well.

And so, I feel a need to write today regarding John's posting to Talisman in
which he, so very uncharacteristically made accusations against people and said
such inflammatory things that we both are left blushing with shame.  He
mentioned certain people by name - people of whom he is extremely fond.  These
individuals posted him privately with some concerns - a couple of others joined
into a conversation.  These individuals were at a point where they were
terribly distressed by certain things.  They were ventilating and in a way
which should have done no one any damage whatsoever.

Alas, John did not take their words in the proper spirit and, instead of being
a careful, patient listener, he shouted back.  And then he made the fatal
mistake of posting to Talisman instead of to the individuals involved.

As I said last week, our beloved son was hospitalized on an emergency basis.  I
have noticed a pattern with John that, during a crisis, he is fine.  However, a
few days afterwards, he does something totally out of character - usually
losing his temper.  I think this is what happened today.  Our life was becoming
increasingly stressful before this occurrence, but John's illness took him over
the brink.

John is mortified by this outburst and told me that he is considering retiring
from Talisman.  Perhaps this is not a bad idea.  I know I should let John write
his own messages.  However, I felt a need to say something myself.  He is so
very upset by this incident that I felt I needed to intervene.  Love, Linda

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 09:22 PST
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Baha'i & the Perennial Philosophy
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

"Christianity universalizes the notion of "Israel" while
>interiorizing the Divine Law; it replaces circumcision of the flesh by
>that of the heart, the "Chosen People" by a Church that includes men
>every provenance, and outward prescriptions by inward virtues, all of
>this having in view, not obediance to the Law, but the Love of God and, in
the last analysis, mystical union. These principles or these
>transpositions could hardly have been unknown to the Essenes, and
>possibly other Jewish initiates, but the * originality of Christianity is
>that it made a religion of them and sacrificed them to Mosaic formalism.*
>(Frithjof Schuon, _Esoterism as Principle and Way_ Perennial Books
>(London: 1990), p. 37).
>
Christianity made a religion of them, but Jesus never did -- this is one
more example of the corruption of religion.  This view, historicaly the
"second attack" -- the election of Israel has been transferred to the Church
-- directed against the synagogue was aimed at the Holy Scriptures
themselves; specifically against all the passages of the Torah which teach
the election of the nation of Israel. God states quite clearly : "Ye shall
be Mine own treasure among all peoples; for all earth is Mine; and ye shall
be unto Me a kingdom of priests and a Holy Nation" (exod. 19:5-6) To this
summons is joined a condition: "if ye will hearken unto My voice indeed, and
keep my covenant."  The most immediate course for the polemic of the Church
was to demonstrate that this condition had been broken by the sins of
Israel. Israels expulsion from the Land of Promise, her dispersion and
wretched estate were clearly an expression of divine rejection. The apostle
Paul never tires of declaring God's wrath has come upon them at last.  This
connection of the cruxifixtion of Jesus with the rejection of the Jews and
the transfer of Israel's election to the Christian Church as the legitimate
heir determined by God is stated as an item of dogma by all the Church
fathers and brought foreward in numerous disputations by Christian
theologians of the Middle Ages as a threatening argumentum ad hominum, and
held as a present day doctrine of the Church -- much to the perpetual dismay
of Jews who get real fed up such misrepresentation of Holy Scripture.
*The Christians do not have the right to interpret scripture contrary to the
sense of the words in order to "prove" the REJECTION of Israel, and in this
manner claim Election for the Church. What is revealed is revealed, and God
is a God of truth. It is written in the Torah: "And yet for all that, when
they are in the land of their enemies, I will not reject them, neither will
I abhor them, to destroy them utterly, and to break my Covenant with them;
for I am the Lord their God." (Lev. 26:44)  That is the point: punishment,
yes -- but not rejection.* That suffering would come upon Israel was
predicted by the prophet Isaiah: "I have tried thee in the furnace of
affliction."  The destruction of the Temple and the dispersion among the
gentiles have their point of origin in the election, and are encompassed
within the Divine Plan.
Were it true that the Church has become Israel, it would be the Christian
Church that returned to the Holy Land and you would have a Christian State
in Israel.  It is "a monstrous farce: to pull the Old Testament out from
under the Jews with the contention that it contains nothing but Christian
doctrine."

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 08:40:59 -0900
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Dear Dr. Uncle Derek

Recently, someone on Talisman indicated that he had pushed some hot
"bottoms."  What are these hot "bottoms?" Are these used in Sufi literature,
or any other mystic manuscript?

Regards,
Mystic wan'a'be

=END=

Subject: Re: Apology
To: jwalbrid@indiana.edu (jwalbrid)
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 12:48:48 -0500 (EST)
From: "Donald Zhang Osborn"
Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu

> I inadvertantly sent out a private flame out over Talisman.  It was
> intended for a couple of individuals and was not very temperate anyway.
>
> It would be a much welcome sop to my injured dignity if you would all
> forget I ever wrote it, erase it from your systems, and think of me as I
> am when I am not feeling dispeptic.
>
> This plea for indulgence applies particularly to those I particularly
> offended.
>
> Yours awkwardly,
> john walbridge

John & all, Allah'u'Abha!  If the "private flame" you refer to was the
Majnun... message, then I too must apologize for replying to it publicly
(unless perchance I misaddressed the cc to Talisman, which I do sometimes when
in a hurry).  I only now saw your apology.  Usually I'm more deliberate in

Yours even more humbly, Don Osborn

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 10:47:50 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Speech vs Behavior: The Heart of the People
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Talisman"

Dear Talismanists,

Dear Talismanists,

I recently composed a response to Professor Cole's "power and
anti-liberalism" that was met with a great deal of misapprehension.  It
seems that because I recommended another course of action (radiant
acquiescence), other than one conceived as traditional parliamentary
opposition, free speech, and freedom of the press I am not viewed as
being  in favor of a serious solution, to the problems facing Baha'is, in
their communities, and in regard to their institutions.  I would also
briefly state that in regard to human rights my position is:  that at
this stage in man's development, I do favor, as a general rule, absent
the Baha'i Administrative Order those rights prescribed in the UN
Declaration of Human Rights.  Rights as we perceive them NOW are defined,
for the most part, as "unrestrained".  I favor a reformulation of rights
with a heavy emphasis on CIVILITY as opposed to the kind of "free for
all" that takes place in America.  I believe, however, the debate will
evolve towards, responsibilities, further down the road, as humanity
recognizes that rights are not a panacea for humanities problems.  If
they were, America would be a much better place to live, and its
government would be a great deal more effective.

IOW,  I am for the progress we have made so far  (Western Democracy), but
I envision something far grander at a later stage (The Most Great Peace),
that need not be predicated NECESSARILY on rights  (as some insist) AS WE
UNDERSTAND THEM TODAY.

It is quite possible, and from my view quite probable that a change in
human behavior  (the human heart) and peoples regard for human dignity,
personhood, and the concept of the "heart of the people" as opposed to
the "will of the people" must make the idea of rights much less of a
burning issue on this globe.  It will take Baha'is who are serious enough
about Baha'u'llah's message (not their own desires) to take the steps
that He has outlined, internalize His teachings, AND BEGIN THE PROCESS OF
SPIRITUAL TRANSFORMATION.  Unfortunately, most of those who have been
successful in achieving some momentum in this area leave their
communities and go elsewhere--usually outside this country. IMHO, the
best of us are sent to fight the spiritual battle on soil other than our
own.  Another part of the problem seems to be that the Baha'is have done
so little to get their act together that people WHO DO NOT CLAIM to be
Baha'is are doing the vast majority of the good work, while the majority
of the Friends (myself included) lay about on their "couch of
heedlessness" caught in the grip of the laxity of discourse and other
forms of distraction.  If anyone doubts what I'm saying let them look to
their own hearts and not to me for an explanation.  This is something the
NSA doesn't tell us and perhaps should.  But they have tender hearts also
and probably could not bear the look of hurt that would appear in the
eyes of the Friends!

It has been suggested to me that the failings of our NSA can be ascribed
to a lack of  free input from the believers at large.  That it is time
for open criticism because the NSA's policies have failed and it is time
to rethink their policies so progress can be made.   Actually I believe,
as I said before, that it is related to an unspoken apathy that has
gripped the believers, not some strange ossification the has overtaken
the NSA. The believers are discouraged at the slow growth of the Faith
over the last 15 years but I don't believe that this can be laid at the
doorstep of the NSA.  That is the easy answer.  Let the leaders assume
the responsibility for the peoples failure.  I AM NOT SAYING THAT OUR
LEADERS or rather our institutions should not share in the responsibility
of the apparently dismal progress the Faith has been making in America;
because they are the people too!  But there are a lot more of us (Baha'is
at the local level) than NSA members.  The Friends discouragement needs
an explanation, but the facts seem too cruel.  I wonder when the
believers will start to shoulder the responsibilities of this Cause.
They seem to want rights, they want to clean out the "Tories", but say,
"don't ask me to serve on a committee, I've got too much to do as it is."
Just let me play the blame game.  That will fix things right up.

I have just exercised my right to speech and I pray that I have not
indulged in an excess of it.  Forgive these words from my heart if they
seem harsh because they are aimed, as much at me, as at anyone else.
I've done all, and more of than these wrongs--much more--so dear friends,
consider these words as coming from a prisoner--one locked in the dungeon
of self--saying do not do as I have done.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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, 8 Feb 1996 10:56:28 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: frlw@midway.uchicago.edu, Masumian@mail.utexas.edu,
Noorbakhsh.Monzavi@hibo.no
Subject: Reuters 2/7/96 (fwd)

>    'IRAN' STORIES
>Transmission date: 96/02/07
>  1. 15:48 IRANIAN ACCUSED OF KILLING FAMILY UNDER SUICIDE WATCH
>  2. 15:47 IRAN NUCLEAR POWER PLANS INCLUDE 80 PROJECTS-PAPER
>  3. 12:13 MORE THAN 5,300 SIGN UP TO RUN FOR IRAN PARLIAMENT
>  4. 09:38 IRAN ANNOUNCES AMNESTY ON ILLEGAL ARMS
>
>=START=   XMT: 15:48 Wed Feb 07  EXP: 5 :00 Sat Feb 10
>
>
> Iranian accused of killing family under suicide watch
>    LOS ANGELES, Feb 7 (Reuter) - An Iranian immigrant accused of killing his
>wife and six children in a fire he is alleged to have deliberately started in
>his flat was under a jail suicide watch on Wednesday, authorities said.
>    Jorjik Avenasian, 40, who emigrated to the United States from Iran with his
>family last year, was expected to be arraigned in court on seven charges of
>murder on Thursday.
>    Police say he set fire to the one-bedroom family flat in suburban Glendale
>early on Tuesday morning then fled the scene. He went first to his sister's
>house and then to the offices of a Persian-language daily newspaper, Asre
>Emrooz.
>    According to that newspaper, Avenasian said he started the fire out of
>jealousy because he believed his wife, Suzana, was having an affair with
>another man. He said the fire was only meant to hurt his wife and he had not
>intended to kill anyone.
>    Avenasian's children were between the ages of four and 17.
>    According to television and newspaper reports, Avenasian tried to stab his
>wife to death when the family was still living in Iran three years ago and
>spent several months in jail for that offence.
>    He was arrested last November for allegedly beating one of his children and
>was ordered to undergo counselling.
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 15:47 Wed Feb 07  EXP: 5 :00 Sat Feb 10
>
>
> Iran nuclear power plans include 80 projects-paper
>    TEHRAN, Feb 7 (Reuter) - Iran is working on 80 projects in the field of
>nuclear power plants construction, a newspaper said on Wednesday.
>    ``A total of 80 projects related to building and completing atomic power
>plants are under way to provide the country's electricity needs by using atomic
>energy,'' the daily Salam said.
>    The newspaper, quoting the Iranian news agency IRNA, said the projects were
>in the fields of civil, mechanical and electrical engineering and had advanced
>17.86 percent in the first six months of the Iranian year that began on March
>21, 1995.
>    It said the projects were towards the construction of a nuclear power
>station in Bushehr and an ``Esteqlal (Independence) atomic power plant.''
>    But a spokesman of Iran's national Atomic Energy Organisation told Reuters:
>``There must be a mistake, we do not have any Esteqlal atomic power plant.''
>    Iran has an \$800 million contract with Russia to complete a nuclear power
>plant in its Gulf port city of Bushehr.
>    Washington has opposed the Bushehr deal, saying Tehran might use the
>technology to develop nuclear weapons. Moscow has said the project was of a
>peaceful nature and in line with international law.
>    Iran denies the U.S. charges and says its nuclear installations are
>regularly inspected by the International Atomic Energy Agency.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 12:13 Wed Feb 07  EXP: 2 :00 Sat Feb 10
>
>
>    TEHRAN, Feb 7 (Reuter) - More than 5,300 candidates, including 305 women,
>are registered to run in elections in March for Iran's 270-seat parliament,
>local media said on Wednesday.
>    The daily Akhbar said the clerical Guardian Council was screening the 5,359
>candidates and would rule on their qualifications by Saturday.
>    A total of 782 of them have registered to run in the March 8 elections for
>30 seats in Tehran, while 45 people are contesting five seats designated for
>    Tehran radio said 34.6 percent of the candidates were university graduates,
>including 5.6 percent with doctorate degrees, and five percent studied at
>theology schools.
>    About 10 percent did not give their education and the remainder had primary
>or secondary schooling.
>    Election officials have accused unnamed candidates of trying to buy votes
>with gifts of cash or carpets, by distributing food or through ``the effective
>support of certain ladies,'' and warned that such candidates would be barred,
>the daily Abrar said.
>    Guardian Council spokesman Ayatollah Mohammad Emami Kashani said on Tuesday
>candidates would be screened for their belief in Islam, the Islamic form of
>government including the principle that it is headed by a supreme spiritual
>    Critics, ranging from nationalists and liberal Islamists to radical
>clerics, have warned that the conservative Council might use its power to
>disqualify candidates on political grounds.
>    Conservatives who were earlier poised to maintain their majority in
>parliament are expected to be challenged by centrist candidates supporting the
>liberal economic reforms of President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 09:38 Wed Feb 07  EXP: 9 :00 Sat Feb 10
>
>
> Iran announces amnesty on illegal arms
>    TEHRAN, Feb 7 (Reuter) - Iran has announced an amnesty for people convicted
>on illegal weapons charges and granted a grace period for others to turn in
>arms, Tehran radio said on Wednesday.
>    Iran's Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei approved the order, which
>covers those charged with weapons possession or arms smuggling and gives others
>six months to hand over unlicensed weapons to authorities, the radio said.
>    It said the amnesty was granted to mark the anniversary of Iran's 1979
>Islamic revolution. It did not say how many people it covered. The order
>followed a previous amnesty in 1983.
>    Large amounts of arms and ammunition fell into civilian hands in the
>revolution and during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war.
>    Several Iranian tribal populations and other ethnic groups, such as the
>Kurds and the Baluchis, have traditionally been armed and occasional clashes
>are reported between government forces and armed rebels or drug smugglers.
>    In one such clash on Tuesday, police seized 3,264 kg (7,180 lb) of opium, a
>rocket launcher and three rockets from smugglers in the southeastern
>Sistan-Baluchestan province which borders on Afghanistan and Pakistan, the
>Iranian news agency IRNA said.
>    A security official in the province said last month that 300 ``bandits''
>had surrendered to authorities since last March.
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>
>

=END=

Date: Thu, 08 Feb 96 12:13:01 -0500
From: "Ahang Rabbani"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: transliteration fonds

[This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII]

My apologies to take bandwidth with this question, but do any of
the esteemed members have information on transliteration fonts
for WordPerfect (for Windows)?  I have no problem with slanted
accent over "a", "i" and "u", but need help with (1) the dot
under as in "h.", "H.", "S.", "Z.", etc., and (2) line under as
in "_sh_", "_ch_", etc.

If anyone is in touch with Baha'i-tech (is that the right name?)
could you forward this note to them as well?

With many thanks in advance, ahang.
rabbana@bmoa.dnet.dupont.com

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 14:21:42 -0500 (EST)
From: Jonah Winters
To: Ahang Rabbani
Cc: talisman
Subject: transliteration fonts

Dear Ahang et al. Ahang asked "Do any of the esteemed members have
information on transliteration fonts for WordPerfect (for Windows)?"

May I draw your attention to the academic transliteration font called *New
World Transliterator* developed by our own Chris Buck. I only use this on
Mac, but I assume (?) that Chris has a PC-compatible version, as well.

If you want more info on this, you could check out a review of it by Kevin
Reinhart in the Dec. 1993 MESA Bulletin.

Last I heard, NWT was selling for \$50 US. And hey, the more you buy, the
better supported Chris will be in finishing his dissertation and the

-Jonah

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Jonah and Kari Winters
33 Endean Avenue / Toronto, Ontario / M4M-1W5 / (416) 461-3527

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 23:13:55+030
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: dpeden@imul.com (Don Peden)
Subject: fiminine/masculine

Androgyny meant that you would be free to realize parts of yourself

It wasn't merely a matter of outward appearances.

>Androgynous persons are those that look like they have aspects of
both the
>male and female genders. They're inherently confusing to look upon.
That
>clearly does not apply to the Manifestation or at least to the
recent ones for
>whom we have historical records.

Gee, guys, I always thought that was called menopause!

Love,

Bev.

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 23:14:30+030
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: dpeden@imul.com (Don Peden)
Subject: hot bottoms

Recently, someone on Talisman indicated that he had pushed some hot
"bottoms."  What are these hot "bottoms?" Are these used in Sufi literature,
or any other mystic manuscript?

Regards,
Mystic wan'a'be

Only in erotic passages where there is a great deal of emotion being expressed.

=END=

From: "K. Paul Johnson"
Subject: Compassion vs. Purity
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 16:21:33 EST

Having finished Marcus Borg's book last night, I'm reflecting
on its implications about Cayce, the Theosophists, and the
Baha'is.  Of all the characterizations of Jesus which draw
scholarly consensus, none is more widely agreed upon than this:
Jesus explicitly and subversively challenged the prevailing
purity ethos of his culture with a compassion ethos.  Incident
after incident, story after story attests to this.  The purity
or holiness way of imitatio dei is "be ye therefore holy as God
is holy."  In Jesus's time and place, this meant observing
ritual purity regulations about food, sex, associations, etc.
Women, gentiles, lepers, tax-collectors, etc. etc. were
impure.  When Jesus said "be ye *compassionate* (a better
translation than merciful, which implies looking down on
someone) even as God is compassionate," he was taking a familar
formula and turning it upside down.  Etymologically, compassion
derives from "womb" and this "be womblike even as God is..."
Also, the term Jesus used for God wasn't just "Father" but
quite intimate and informal and more like "daddy" or "papa"--
which shocking in cultural context of respect for YHWH.

I won't go into all the illustrations of this theme, but for
example, "it's not what you put in your mouth than can defile
you, but what comes out" and "was the sabbath made for man..."
and hanging out with women, and touching lepers, and having
large meals with all manner of people--- every day in every
way, Jesus was saying "I reject your whole culture of purity
and taboos."

The title is really appropriate:  Meeting Jesus Again for the
First Time.  This is a Jesus I really like better than Baha, or
Buddha, or you name it... and Borg brought his distinctive
liberationist ethos home to me.  The Good Samaritan story is
one of the strongest.  Since the man in the ditch might have
been dead, and to touch him would make the Pharisee impure,
this was a reason that it took a Samaritan to come help him.

Cayce comes out smelling like a rose, in terms of catching on
to the basic truth about who Jesus really was as evaluated by
contemporary scholars.  Contemporary Theosophists, alas, have a
purity culture rather than a compassion culture.  The secret
inner sanctum group enforces vegetarianism, teelotaling,
nonsmoking, etc. on premises of all Theosophical properties--
even though the Society per se has no such regulations--
because the Esoteric Section does, and they would be
contaminated if other people ate meat or smoked or drank around
them.  More importantly, Theosophists are obsessed with
doctrinal purity, what's Theosophy and what isn't, etc. much
more so than with feeling "womblike" toward non-Theosophists.

Baha'is, however, IMO come off even worse based on this
measurement.  The letter from the House about gays, for
example, reeks of purity ethos and lacks anything more than a
perfunctory nod toward compassion.  Baha'i culture is
purity-obsessed in the extreme, from women's prayers being
related to their monthly cycle, to women contaminating the
House and therefore not being allowed on it (deny it till
you're blue in the face-- that's the root problem), to
grotesque anxiety about "spiritual contagion" by covenant
breakers.  Except for some nice comments re compassion from Baha'u'llah and
plenty of respite from `Abdu'l Baha, the purity-obsession of
Baha'i culture starts with the Bab wanting to burn all the
non-Babi books and continues down to the House's proud

Therefore, it is difficult in the extreme, in light of Borg's
interpretation of Jesus-- which is that of a scholarly
consensus-- to imagine him coming back to reinstate the very
thing that he devoted his entire life to attacking and
undermining.

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 17:07:27 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: "K. Paul Johnson"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Compassion vs. Purity

Aw, c'mon Paul.  You can fault Baha'is if you like for a "purity"
complex, but you cannot fault Baha'u'llah.

Shi`ite Islam is pervaded by concerns for ritual purity (najasat).  I've
annoyed ulama by shaking their hands, which meant they had to then go do
purifying ablutions.  A lot of Iranian Baha'is can tell you horror
stories about being treated as the objects of fear of ritual pollution in
Iran.

One of the major points of the Ridvan Declaration was Baha'u'llah's
abolition of the concept of ritual impurity.  Everything is now pure from
his point of view, and this is explicit in the Aqdas.

At no point does he indicate that women's exemption from some ritual
duties during menstruation has anything to do with ritual impurity.
Those with bad PMS are after tired and in discomfort.  Likewise,
Baha'u'llah urged non-association with Azalis, not because they were
ritually impure, but explicitly in order to avoid conflict and contention.

If your point is that Baha'is have not absorbed this teaching of
Baha'u'llah, that is possible.  However, Baha'u'llah every bit as much as
Jesus put compassion first and denied the saliency of ritual pollution.

cheers   Juan Cole, History, Univ. of Michigan

=END=

From: SFotos@eworld.com
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 14:05:36 -0800
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Dire warning for Dr. Burl

Hey there Dr. Burl,

You are in deep trouble!

pleased that such misinformation was posted on a Baha'i discussion list and
asked me to set things straight (and mentioned something about Dr. Burl
getting a life).

Helen has been a vegan for the past two years. FYI, a vegan takes no drugs,
eats no animal products, doesn't even wear leather or drink coffee or tea,
and certainly doesn't smoke. As she says, "tell him that there's no such
thing as a vegan cigarette."

Helen is working for the Sierra Club and attending Central Community
college. She is not in any sort of trouble and is doing very well. Any
remarks made to the contrary on this list are the result of Dr. Burl's deep
confusion...

As a mom, I'm proud of her and the way she is taking charge of her life.

Sandy Fotos

>
>Any further questions, ask Sandy Fotos who is  getting on a plane to
>track down her sweet little Helen, a recent Maxwell Graduate, who
> was last seenwith a Lucky Strike dangling from her lips, having the >Last

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 17:00:30 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Jesus and Baha'u'llah, pt. 2

"Behold the Man" by Juan R.I. Cole, pt. 2

Jesus' Arrest and Trial
The seventh-century Meccans boycotted the Prophet
Muhammad and his followers, then attempted but failed to have him
assassinated, and finally fought a series of battles with him, which they
lost.  He thus avoided ever having been arrested or tried by them.  The
Bab, on the other hand, as we have seen, was both imprisoned and
tried.  Baha'u'llah suffered imprisonment twice, in Tehran in 1852, and
in Acre in 1868-70, as well as being exiled and often kept under virtual
house arrest during much of his life, though he never received a proper
trial.  The story of Jesus' arrest and trial therefore had many
resonances with the lives of the Bab and Baha'u'llah.
In one of his meditations Baha'u'llah says his eyes were
"cheered" by the tribulations God had decreed for him, and he recalls
the scene of Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane, after the last supper
and shortly before his arrest by the High Priest, paraphrasing Mk.
14:36: "He Who was Thy Spirit (Jesus), O my God, withdrew all alone
in the darkness of the night preceding His last day on earth, and falling
on His face to the ground besought Thee saying, `If it be Thy will, O
my Lord, my Well-Beloved, let this cup, through thy grace and
bounty, pass from Me.'  By Thy bounty, O Thou Who art the Lord of
all names and the Creator of the heavens!  I can smell the fragrance of
the words which, in His love for Thee, His lips uttered . . ."
(Baha'u'llah 1971b:192-193; 1981:130-131).  Here, Baha'u'llah sees in
Jesus' simultaneous plea for relief and expression of resignation to the
will of God an archetypal spiritual attitude, which he himself shared.
Jesus' arrest and trial is a scene to which Baha'u'llah repeatedly
adverts in his writings.  It may be that it reminded him of the Bab's
own trial in Tabriz, when the young heir apparent Nasiru'd-Din Mirza
claims to be the Mahdi and then declared him devoid of religion (that
is, an infidel).  In that trial, the mujtahids or Muslim jurisprudents
represented the hierocracy, whereas the heir apparent personified
secular power, and it was the clergy who issued the legal opinion
(fatwa) that allowed the Bab's blood to be shed, while the government
of Nasiru'd-Din carried it out two years after his succession to the
throne (Amanat:385-400).
The Gospel accounts differ on the details of Jesus' arrest and
trial.  The Synoptics tend to depict a convocation of the Sanhedrin, or
council of rabbis, but it has been pointed out that there are several
difficulties with this scenario.  The Sanhedrin would not have met at
night (as in Mark and Matthew, which have it meet yet again after
daybreak), and would not have met on Passover, and certainly not at
night on Passover.  In addition, that body lacked authority to try
capital crimes, since Jerusalem was directly ruled by the Romans at
that point.  The Sanhedrin trial scene, it has been argued, must be seen
more as early Christian theology (Jesus was condemned for religious
rather than political reasons) than as history.  The more likely account
is that of John (18:3-28), who has Jesus taken from the garden of
Gethsemane by a mixed group of Jewish "officers" and Roman soldiers
to the house of Annas (a Jerusalem notable and the father-in-law of the
Jewish High Priest Caiaphas).  After his triumphal entry into
Jerusalem, Annas and Caiaphas appear to have been distressed over
the possibility that Jesus was a rebel or bandit who might be planning
to lead a zealot-style revolt against the Romans.  His answers did not
assuage their fears, so he was taken first to the house of Caiaphas and
then delivered to Pilate so that Roman justice might be imposed on
him, since he had done nothing for which he could be sanctioned by
the Sanhedrin (Fredriksen:116-120).
In the Book of Certitude, Baha'u'llah draws on the Synoptic
accounts of the trial, emphasizing the manner in which Jesus retained
his sense of divine authority as the Son of Man even in the midst of his
humiliating questioning:  "Similarly, call thou to mind the day when the
Jews, who had surrounded Jesus, Son of Mary, were pressing Him to
confess His claim of being the Messiah and Prophet of God, so that
they might declare Him an infidel and sentence Him to death.  Then,
they led Him away, He Who was the Day-star of the heaven of divine
Revelation, unto Pilate and Caiaphas, who was the leading divine
(a`zam-i `ulama) of that age.  The chief priests were all assembled in
the palace, also a multitude of people who had gathered to witness His
sufferings, to deride and injure Him" (Baha'u'llah 1970:132-133;
1980a:102-103).  When pressed to say who he is before the High
Priest Caiaphas, Baha'u'llah observes, Jesus replied: "Beholdest thou
not the Son of Man sitting on the right hand of power and might?" (a
paraphrase of Mk. 14:61).  Baha'u'llah is struck by Christ's bold
declaration of power at a time when he was to all appearances
completely vulnerable (Baha'u'llah 1970:133; 1980a:103).  The
Synoptic image of the faithless crowd at the public trial of Jesus
appears elsewhere, as well.   When, in 1879, the leading Muslim
jurisprudents of Isfahan condemned to death for their faith two
Baha'u'llah wrote a powerful denunciation of this act.  He asked
Shaykh Muhammad Baqir, whom he branded "the Wolf," "Art thou
happy to see the abject and worthless as thy followers?  They support
thee as did a people before them, they that followed Annas, who,
without clear proof and testimony, pronounced judgment against the
Spirit" (1988:210; 1980b:129).
In other passages, Baha'u'llah appears to draw more on John's
depiction of the High Priest and his father-in-law interrogating Jesus in
the latter's home.  Baha'u'llah recalls the opposition met by Messengers
of God such as Muhammad and Jesus, writing, "Consider the
Dispensation of Jesus Christ.  Behold, how all the learned men
(`ulama') of that generation, though eagerly anticipating the coming of
the Promised One, have nevertheless denied Him.  Both Annas, the
most learned among the divines (`ulama') of His day, and Caiaphas, the
high priest (aqda al-qudat), denounced Him and pronounced the
sentence of His death" (1976:83; 1988:237).  In the original it is clear
that Baha'u'llah powerfully identifies Jesus' persecutors with the
Muslim clergy of his own day, calling the rabbis "ulema" (the word for
Muslim learned men of religion) and making Caiaphas a "qadi" or
Muslim court judge.
In his Most Holy Tablet, written for the Christian community,
Baha'u'llah recalls this theme again: "call thou to mind the one who
sentenced Jesus to death.  He was the most learned of his age in his
own country, whilst he who was only a fisherman believed in Him"
(Baha'u'llah 1988:10; 1980b:4; Sours 1990).  There appears to be a
shift of emphasis in Baha'u'llah's imagery relating to the trial, from a
depiction in the Babi-period Book of Certitude of a large gathering of
Jewish rabbis in the Sanhedrin who condemned Jesus (after the
Synoptic Gospels), toward a focus in the Baha'i period in Acre on
Caiaphas and Annas as the chief villains of the piece (the Johannine
version).  This shift may reflect the changing relationship of Baha'u'llah
to the Shi`ite clerics.  In the early 1860s the Babi community of which
he formed a part had been violently and massively suppressed by the
joint action of the Shi`ite clergy and the state, partially in response to
the perceived militancy of the Babis.  In forming the new Baha'i
religion from 1863, however, Baha'u'llah imbued it with a peaceful
ethos, and while Baha'is continued to be persecuted there was nothing
like the clashes that occurred in the Babi period.  In some communities
it appears that Shi`ite clergymen were either sympathetic to the ideals
of the Baha'is or at least willing to look the other way.  Still, powerful
clerics such as Shaykh Muhammad Baqir and his son Shaykh
Muhammad Taqi Najafi in Isfahan persecuted Baha'is on several
occasions, scapegoating them relentlessly.  The Johannine account of
Jesus' trial, which placed blame for his condemnation primarily on the
Chief Priest and his family rather than on the entire Sanhedrin, could
be evoked to signal the wickedness of a few top clerics rather than
attacking the general run of Shi`ite learned men.  In addition,
Baha'u'llah appears not to mention Pilate after the early 1860s, placing
most of the blame on the High Priest, and this emphasis may reflect his
desire to effect a rapprochement between the Baha'i community and
the Qajar state in Iran.  In any case, the narrative of the arrest and trial
of Jesus certainly helped legitimate the incarcerations and examinations
suffered by the Bab and Baha'u'llah.
Jesus' Crucifixion
Because Baha'u'llah endorses the New Testament text as
authentic, he accepts the reality of the crucifixion, unlike most Muslim
thinkers.  The general Muslim unwillingness to admit that Jesus was
crucified before bodily ascending into heaven is rooted in Qur'an
4:155-158, which castigates the Jews for "slaying the Prophets without
right" and for their saying, "`We slew the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary,
the Messenger of God'--yet they did not slay him, neither crucified
him, only a likeness of that was shown to them."  Much controversy
centuries.  Some have alleged that the phrase shubbiha la-hum, "a
likeness was shown to them," shows that the Qur'an accepted the
doctrine of the Gnostics that someone other than Jesus mounted the
cross in his stead, or that it accorded with the Docetists, Christian
heretics who denied that Jesus had a physical body.  Medieval Muslim
commentators developed a Borges-like "substitutionist" theory, saying
that someone else was mistakenly arrested and crucified in Jesus'
stead; some suggested that it was Judas Iscariot himself.  As B. Todd
Lawson has underlined, the medieval exegete and theologian Fakhru'd-
Din ar-Razi rejected the substitutionist theory as intrinsically unjust
and unworthy of God (Lawson 1991; cf. Ayoub 1980).
Docetism in the Qur'an is unlikely.  The Qur'an is nothing if not
realistic about physical reality, and it at one point criticizes local
Arabian Christian sectaries (Docetists or Gnostics?) for denying that
Jesus and Mary ate food (5:75).  It also affirms that Jesus was mortal
and died (19:33).  A less literal interpretation of shubbiha la-hum
would be "it was made to appear to them [the Jews] thus."  Several
plausible interpretations have been advanced along these lines.  It
might mean that God hardened their hearts by allowing them to think
they had succeeded in having Jesus killed, when in fact his spirit is
immortal.  After all, the Qur'an forbids Muslims to say of the martyrs
that they are dead:  "Nay, they are living, only you are not aware"
(2:154).  This interpretation would fit with a later phrase in the
passage, "and they slew him not of a certainty--no indeed; God raised
him up to Him."  Or it might mean that they were not the actual agents
in his death, rather the Romans were, and some Medinan Jews and
their predecessors were under an illusion when they took credit for and
boasted of this accomplishment (Parrinder 105-121; Robinson:106-
141; Lawson 1991).
Some Muslims adhered to a minority view that accepted the
reality of the crucifixion and passion.  This was true of the tenth-
century Isma`ili Shi`ite group, the Brethren of Purity, authors of the
influential Epistles (Rasa'il).  They argued that only Jesus' human
nature (nasut) was crucified, and mentioned biblical details such as
Jesus being offered vinegar on the cross.  Sufi mystics also often
suggested that it was only Jesus' human form that was crucified,
whereas his aspect as Spirit was received by God into heaven, and that
the Qur'an meant only to deny the death of the Spirit (Robinson:56-57,
184; Jandi:495-512)).  In a less analytical vein, Persian poets
sometimes referred to Jesus and his cross, appearing to accept the
symbolism of the passion in their imagery (Ariyan).
In the Surah of Blood (Surat ad-Dam), written in Edirne
around 1866, Baha'u'llah represents the eternal Logos that was
manifest in each of the Manifestations of God as lamenting its
treatment through the millennia.  It speaks of Pharaoh's persecution of
Moses as well as the Imam Husayn's death and decapitation at the
hands of the forces of Yazid the Umayyad.  This Logos figure, as
Jesus, apostrophizes God, saying, "Thou didst lift Me up upon the
cross (arfa`tani ila as-salib)," an acknowledgment that God's will
permitted the crucifixion (Baha'u'llah 1976:89; 1892-1978, 4:9).  In
the Book of Certitude, Baha'u'llah clearly speaks of Jesus having been
"persecuted and killed" (idha' va qatl) by his opponents (1980a:103).
Baha'u'llah affirms not simply the fact of Jesus on the cross, but
agrees with Paul in seeing the passion as redemptive.  In one passage,
he discerns a similarity among the stories of sacrifice of Abraham,
Jesus and the Imam Husayn.  God's command to Abraham to sacrifice
his first-born had as its purpose "to sacrifice him as a ransom [fida'i]
for the sins and iniquities [`isyan va khataha] of all the peoples of the
earth" (Baha'u'llah 1976:76; Ishraq-Khavari 1971-73, 7:77; cf. Cole
1993).  He says that because of its treatment of the Prophets of God
and His chosen ones all humankind deserves to perish (halakat), but
that God's invisible and loving grace (altaf) has protected it from
retribution.  The persecution of the prophets is thus both an occasion
of collective sin and an occasion of grace, since the sacrificed holy
figure ransoms humans from the bondage of their sins.  "This same
honor [maqam], Jesus, the Son of Mary, besought the one true God . .
. to confer upon Him" (ibid.).  Since Shi`ite Islam possessed an
elaborate theology of redemptive sacrifice centered on the martyrdom
of the Imam Husayn, it was easy enough for Baha'u'llah to meld that
On the other hand, neither Islam nor the Baha'i faith accepts the idea
of original sin, so that humankind is here redeemed, not from Adam's
lapse, but from the historical guilt of having tortured and killed the
Messengers of God.  Another cause for which Jesus is said to sacrifice
himself is the coming of the Day of God, that is, the world-historical
turning-point represented by Baha'u'llah's own advent.  In the Surat as-
Sultan written in the early Acre period for the Baha'is of Sultanabad,
Baha'u'llah depicts Jesus upon the cross, confusedly noticing blood
upon his tunic and being questioned and taunted.  The dove of holiness
then informs him of what will befall Baha'u'llah (al-ghulam) when he
arises in the station of Christ's return, and it is at that point that Jesus
cries out and departs from this world, ascending to the presence of
God (Baha'u'llah in Ishraq-Khavari 1967:193-194).
In a letter to a Christian clergyman of Istanbul, perhaps a
member of the Eastern Orthodox church, Baha'u'llah connects the
crucifixion with sacrifice and with human advancement.  He writes,
"Know thou that when the Son . . . [al-Ibn] yielded up His breath to
God [sallama ar-ruh], the whole creation wept with a great weeping.
By sacrificing Himself, however, a fresh capacity was infused into all
created things.  Its evidences, as witnessed in all the peoples of the
earth, are now manifest before thee.  The deepest wisdom which the
sages have uttered, the profoundest learning which any mind hath
unfolded, the arts which the ablest hands have produced, the influence
exerted by the most potent of rulers, are but manifestations of the
quickening power released by His transcendent, His all-pervasive, and
resplendent Spirit" (Baha'u'llah 1976:85-86; 1892:93).  Jesus' passion
is here identified as the motive force behind Christian civilization, the
unseen source of human advance.  On the one hand, this passage
evokes something like the Eastern Orthodox image of Jesus as the
Cosmic Christ, as Pantocrator, the Ruler of All (Pelikan:57-70).  On
the other, Baha'u'llah as a nineteenth-century thinker innovates in
linking the redemption gained by the cross to ideas such as civilization,
progress, and the arts and sciences.  Christ not only saved individual
souls, but engendered by his teachings and self-sacrifice an entire
civilization.
Why does Baha'u'llah accept the crucifixion?  Christian feelings
about and images of the crucifixion come closer to the religious
sensibilities of Shi`ites than they do to those of most Sunnis.  But even
most Shi`ites, despite their passion plays for Imam Husayn, rejected
the idea that Christ died on the cross.  A more relevant event might be
the execution of the Bab.  Most Muslims thought the paradigmatic
prophet was Muhammad, a successful Prophet-Statesman who died of
old age in the capital of the incipient state that he created, and this
image may have made it difficult for them to concede that Jesus could
be summarily killed.  Babis, on the other hand, knew very well that a
Manifestation of God could be so cruelly treated, since they daily lived
with the outrage at Tabriz.  Indeed, the passion of Christ helped jusfify
the passion of the Bab.
I have found only one reference in Baha'u'llah's writings to the
resurrection of Christ.  In a poetic passage, Baha'u'llah depicts himself
as having adorned the cross in his previous manifestation as Christ,
saying that he has now risen from the dead (Ishraq-Khavari 1982:148).
In short, he assimilates the resurrection to the second coming.  In
accord with his symbolic approach to the miracle stories in the
Gospels, he apparently understood the resurrection narratives in
Matthew and Luke as a spiritual event in the lives of the disciples
rather than as a physical reality.  This is certainly the interpretation of
his son and successor, `Abdu'l-Baha, who may well have received it
from his father (1981:103-105; 1983:76-78).  Baha'u'llah does refer to
Christ's ascension into heaven, but seems to use it as a symbolic
manner of talking about his death upon the cross.  In the Book of
Certitude, he says of the authorities' actions toward Jesus: "They at
last heaped on His blessed Person such woes that He took His flight
unto the fourth heaven" (Baha'u'llah 1970:133; 1980a:103).  In Islamic
lore, Jesus was supposed to inhabit the fourth (sometimes the third) of
the seven heavens until his return at the end of time (Robinson:94).  In
the Surah of Sultan Baha'u'llah depicts Jesus upon the cross as
severing himself from this world and "ascending" into the divine
presence (Ishraq-Khavari 1967:193-194).
The difference between the major Muslim treatments of Jesus'
arrest, trial, crucifixion and death and Baha'u'llah's could not be more
stark.  Baha'u'llah's Jesus equivocates in Gethsemene, boldly replies to
Annas and Caiaphas, is delivered to Pilate, and is crucified to the death
on Easter Friday.  His weary soul is raised up to God from the cross.
Few Muslim accounts indeed go so far or accord so intimately with
aspects of New Testament texts.  Like modern Christian liberals,
Baha'u'llah sees the Resurrection not as a bodily but as a spiritual
event, an existential realization in the disciples.

Paraclete and Parousia
The New Testament writers, and most Christians ever since,
did not think the drama of Jesus ended with the ascension to his
Father.  He was expected to return.  The return (Gr. parousia) of
Christ is probably the Gospel theme to which Baha'u'llah himself most
frequently adverts.  Since Baha'u'llah's idea of time is the gyre, the
spiral combining recurrent cycles and upward progression, Jesus' life is
unique from one point of view but subject to the Eternal Return from
another.  There is a sense, he argues, in which the advent of each
subsequent Manifestation of God (Muhammad and the Bab) represents
a "return" of Christ.  Of Muhammad, he says:  "in the Dispensation of
the Qur'an both the Book and the Cause of Jesus were confirmed.  As
to the matter of names, Muhammad, Himself, declared: `I am Jesus.'
He recognized the truth of the signs, prophecies, and words of Jesus,
and testified that they were all of God.  In this sense, neither the
person of Jesus nor His writings hath differed from that of Muhammad
and of His holy Book, inasmuch as both have championed the Cause
of God, uttered His praise, and revealed His commandments.  Thus it
is that Jesus, Himself, declared: `I go away and come again unto you.'
[John 14:28].  Consider the sun.  Were it to say now, `I am the sun of
yesterday,' it would speak the truth" (Baha'u'llah 1970:20; cf. Buck;
Lawson 1987:342-343).  In his Gems of the Mysteries, Baha'u'llah
quotes John 16:5-7 about the Counsellor or Comforter (Gr. paraclete)
who, Jesus promised his disciples, would come once he himself had
departed (Baha'u'llah 1890-1978, 3:11-12; cf. Lambden forthcoming).
These verses were very popular among Muslim apologists, who saw in
them a prediction of Muhammad's coming.  On the one hand,
Baha'u'llah confirmed that Jesus gave them glad-tidings of a prophet
who would come after him, appearing to confirm that Muhammad was
the paraclete.  On the other hand, in Baha'u'llah's cyclical schema of
the Eternal Return, the Counsellor would come again and again, first
as Muhammad, then as the Bab.  This figure becomes another way of
referring to the spiritual return of Christ (Ishraq-Khavari 1971-73,
4:65; Lambden 1983:45-47; Buck).  In the Book of Certitude,
Baha'u'llah presents a long excursus on the minor apocalypse from Mt.
24:29-31, which enumerates the signs that will accompany his
eschatological return, showing the symbolic ways in which the Bab's
Many Muslims expected that after the advent of the Mahdi (a
descendant of the Prophet who was expected to arise at the end of
time to fill the world with justice after it had been filled with tyranny),
Jesus would return shortly before the Resurrection Day.  Muslim lore
even contains numerous miraculous acts and adventures that the
returned Christ will undertake (Parrinder:122-125; Robinson:78-105).
Mahmoud Ayoub has translated a particularly interesting Sufi
interpretation of the return of Christ, by Isma`il ibn Mustafa al-Haqqi,
which says of Jesus:  "He shall return in the end to be a sign for the
hour (`ilm li's-sa`ah, that is, the Day of Resurrection [Q. 43:61]) . . .
[For in this] is [the Islamic dispensation's] great ennoblement, in that it
will be closed by a prophet-messenger who will be subject to the
shari`a [divinely-revealed Law].  Both Jews and Christians will believe
in it [that is, Islam].  Through him (Jesus) God will renew the age of
prophethood for the community (umma).  He shall be served by the
Mahdi and the men of the cave.  He shall marry and beget children.
He shall be one of the community of Muhammad as the seal of his
awliya' [saints] . . . For the Spirit of Jesus is the manifestation of the
Greatest Name, and an effulgence of divine power . . ." (Haqqi in
Ayoub 1980:121).  In a gloss on Qur'an 2:86, the Bab says the "clear
signs" God bestowed on Jesus are a reference to his future co-advent
with the Islamic promised one.  He identifies Jesus or the Holy Spirit
that aids him as "the noblest of the partisans of [the first Shi`ite Imam
or successor to the Prophet] `Ali" (the Bab in Lawson 1987:484-485).
The Bab gradually revealed himself to be the Mahdi, and
prophesied the coming of "He Whom God shall make Manifest."
When Baha'u'llah asserted, from 1863, that he was the promised one
prophesied by the Bab, he was as a result claiming to be the spiritual
return of Christ.  The idea of past holy figures "returning" (raj`at) was
a doctrine of Shi`ite Islam, not so very different in conception from
Jesus' own assertion that John the Baptist had been the return of the
Prophet Elijah.  In Baha'u'llah's Tablet to Queen Victoria, he wrote,
"all that hath been mentioned in the Gospel hath been fulfilled.  The
land of Syria hath been honoured by the footsteps of its Lord . . ."
(1967:33; 1968:131).  In his letter to the Pope, Baha'u'llah says that
"He, verily, hath again come down from Heaven even as He came
down from it the first time.  Beware that thou dispute not with Him
even as the Pharisees disputed with Him (Jesus) without a clear token
or proof" (1967:83; 1968:73).  Similar statements are scattered
through Baha'u'llah's writings (1988:11; 1980b:4-5; cf. Lambden
1993).
The complex figurative treatment of Jesus' return in
Baha'u'llah's writings, depending as it does upon ideas such as cyclical
sacred time, the return of personality-attributes, and the more mystical
traditions of Islamic eschatology, has perforce been treated very briefly
here.  It is clear, however, that for Baha'u'llah Jesus Christ possessed
an eschatological and not merely a historical significance.  He is a form
of the Eternal Prophet, returning again and again through the upward
gyre of sacred history.

Jesus and the New Testament are important for Baha'u'llah for
many reasons, some explicit and some implicit.  Among the latter is the
way in which references to Jesus and the Gospel helped to relativize
the Islamic heritage.  For a new religion to emerge from Islam, with its
dense, millennium-old traditions and highly elaborated religious
scholarship was as difficult as for a moon to escape the gravity of its
planet.  Taking the New Testament seriously helped put Islam in
perspective, as one religious civilization among many.  Although the
Qur'an itself depicted Muhammad as only one among the messengers
of God, subsequent Muslim tradition tended to contain a fully fleshed-
out image of the Prophet while reducing the previous envoys to thin
stereotypes.  Baha'u'llah cites and quotes the New Testament to evoke
the rich texture of Jesus' life as revealed in the Gospels.  The French
linguist Saussure suggested the metaphor of the chessboard for some
kinds of linguistic change, arguing that when one piece changes
position, it completely reconfigures the board, affecting all the other
pieces.  I would argue that the insertion of the New Testament into
Arabic and Persian discourse functions in a similar manner, causing
other texts, including the Qur'an, suddenly to look very different.
Baha'u'llah blends together the various sources about Jesus' life
available to Muslims by accepting the authority of the existing New
Testament and interpreting the other sources in light of it.
Not only does an engagement with New Testament texts allow
Baha'u'llah to relativize Islam, but it also provides him with an
opportunity to reach out to Christians as friends and even potential
converts to his religion.  Baha'u'llah's good relations with Christians in
Edirne and in the Acre-Haifa area to some extent derived from his
obvious openness to and respect for the Christian scriptures, an
attitude that contrasted with that of most local Muslim leaders.  He
especially emphasizes his assertion that he is the spiritual return of
Christ in his letters to Christians (Buck unpublished; cf. Buck 1986;
Momen 1992).   Nevertheless, this use of the New Testament for
missiological purposes post-dates Baha'u'llah's extensive citations of it
to Muslim interlocutors in Baghdad, and so reaching out to Christians
cannot have been his primary motivation in turning to these texts.
Baha'u'llah also refers to Jesus in order to make sense of the
setbacks faced by Babis and Baha'is.  Jesus' harried life of self-denial
and radical iternancy are implicitly seen as similar to the imprisonments
and exiles of the Bab and Baha'u'llah.  Caiaphas and Annas are
gradually focused on as the chief source of opposition to Jesus, and
are depicted as analogous to the Muslim learned men and judges of
Qajar Iran.  Baha'u'llah conceived of himself as a prophet teaching
wisdom, as a conduit for the irruption of divine grace and energy into
the world, as a founder of a new, global civilization, and he depicted
Jesus in the same terms.  Jesus' Gospel was held by Christians to
abrogate the complex ritual and other laws of Judaism, just as
Baha'u'llah abrogated much Islamic and Babi law in favor of a simpler
religion based on a few broad ethical principles.  Passages such as the
Minor Apocalypse could be employed to help naturalize the messianic
and eschatological motifs in Iranian culture, bolstering Babi-Baha'i
claims that the advent of the End-Time and of the promised one could
occur in normal history as a spiritual rather than physical apocalypse.
Finally, the theme of redemptive sacrifice, so powerful in Shi`ite Islam,
was reinforced by the New Testament, providing a doubly strong basis
upon which to understand the execution by firing squad of the Bab and
the exiles, imprisonment and humiliations inflicted on Baha'u'llah.
For triumphalist Muslims with the image of the conquering
Muhammad in their minds, the shattered corpse on the square in
Tabriz and the ignominious imprisonment of Baha'u'llah in the
Ottoman barracks of Acre stood as arguments against the truth of the
Babi and Baha'i religions.  But these outrages were after all no more
damning than the scandal of the cross, the notoriety of which had not
prevented the emergence of Christianity as the world's most successful
religion.  Thus, Baha'u'llah strongly and explicitly affirms the historicity
of the crucifixion and death of Christ, despite the overwhelming
consensus against it among exegetes of the Qur'an.  Baha'u'llah was
clearly steeped in the esoteric Shi`ite and Sufi literature that most
often, within Islamic culture, acquiesced in the historicity of Jesus'
execution.  Aspects of Christian theology, especially the idea of the
Logos, and the divinity of Christ, resonated well with the esoteric
Shi`ite and Sufi background of Baha'i theology, and if taken in a
generic sense as applicable to all the High Prophets, helped justify Babi
theopathic language.  In keeping with Baha'u'llah's figurative approach
to Jesus' miracles, he sees even Christ's predictions of his own advent
or parousia to refer not to cosmic events but to an allegory of Eternal
Return, a return of the attributes and not of the essence, so that
Muhammad, the Bab and Baha'u'llah are all in some sense cyclical
returns of the Christ-spirit, all equally fulfilling in a symbolic manner
the dire omens of the minor apocalypse.   The final image of Jesus in
Baha'u'llah's writings is as the Prisoner of Acre in western Galilee.

*I am grateful for their comments on this paper to Christopher Buck,
Seena Fazel, Khazeh Fananapazir, Stephen Lambden, Todd Lawson,
Michael Sours and Robert Stockman.

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 16:58:18 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Jesus and Baha'u'llah, Pt. 1

Since Jesus and Baha'u'llah have come up here, I thought the friends
might enjoy reading a paper I have written on the image of Jesus in
Baha'u'llah's Writings.  This is a shortened and "academized" version of
a longer piece I hope will go in a book.  It has been almost accepted in
a prominent Religion journal, and it is the editor who is responsible
both for the shortening and for the academizing; but if he publishes it
I'll forgive him.  I'm sorry that I cannot provide the references owing
to format problems.  This is about to be published, in addition to my
author's copyright, so it should not be published or quoted at length
without my permission.

cheers   Juan Cole, History, Univ. of Michigan

BEHOLD THE MAN:
BAHA'U'LLAH ON THE LIFE OF JESUS*

JUAN R.I. COLE

In the view of the nineteenth-century Iranian prophet,
Baha'u'llah (1817-1892), the major world-religions were founded by
"Manifestations of God" (sing. mazhar-i ilahi), theophanies who
mirrored forth the names and attributes of God on the human plane.
These previous divine Manifestations included Moses, Jesus,
Muhammad and the Bab in the West, and Zoroaster and the Hindu
figures in the East.  Jesus of Nazareth was important for Baha'u'llah in
a number of ways, and he cited the New Testament occasionally.  Such
references were rare among Muslim thinkers, who, on the whole,
regarded the New Testament text as unreliable and corrupt and found
its language about Jesus incompatible with the Qur'an and Muslim
theology.  Why did Baha'u'llah break with this Muslim tradition of
excluding the actual Bible from religious discourse?  I will look for the
answer to this question in three areas.  First, I will examine the lessons
that might have been learned from the Judeo-Christian experience for
the founder of a new, post-Islamic religion.  Second, I will look at the
way in which many of Baha'u'llah's references to Jesus are
characterized by presentism, insofar as he invokes Christ to illuminate
a contemporary situation within Babi-Baha'i history.  Third, I will ask
what the implications were of Baha'u'llah's approach to Jesus for his
relations with Middle Eastern and Mediterranean Christians.
The position of Christians and Christianity had changed
enormously in Iran during the first half of the nineteenth century.  The
encroachments of the Russian and British Empires, their concern with
the welfare of local Christians, the establishment of missionary schools,
and some Iranian Christians' own involvement in commerce with
Europe, all set this community apart.  In consequence, some educated
Iranians took a new interest in the history and doctrines of Christianity,
and even some clerics investigated the religion in order to refute
visiting missionaries such as Henry Martyn (Algar:82-102, Aryan:92-
95).  As a nineteenth-century Persian from a Shi`ite culture, Baha'u'llah
inherited a number of images of Jesus, from the Qur'an, from the
Persian Sufi mystics and from Shi`ite texts, as well as from nineteenth-
century Arabic printings of the New Testament.  These perspectives
had been seen by many Muslim authors as incompatible, and their
juxtaposition raises many thorny questions.  How did Baha'u'llah
navigate his way among diverse sources to create a new intertextuality
(a new set of texts read against one another)?  What were his views of
the seminal events in Jesus' life?
The Babi movement began in 1844 in Shiraz, Iran, with the
special divine calling as the "Bab" or intermediary between God and
humans; ultimately he asserted that he was the Mahdi or promised one
of Islam.  The Bab was ultimately arrested for heresy and imprisoned
in fortresses in Iran's northwest.  In 1848 at Tabriz, he was examined
by the Shi`ite clergy in the presence of the heir apparent and declared a
heretic worthy of death.  The Bab revealed his own holy book, the
Bayan, to supplant the Qur'an, and laid great stress on the coming of a
further messianic figure after him, "He whom God shall make
manifest."  In 1850 the Iranian state had the Bab executed at the public
square in Tabriz, in the wake of outbreaks of violence between Shi`ites
who rejected the Bab and the 100,000 or so who had accepted him.  In
1852 a cabal of Babis in Tehran attempted to assassinate Nasiru'd-Din
Shah (r. 1848-1896), but failed.  The shah launched a nationwide
pogrom against the Babis that left thousands dead and drove the
religion underground.  Among those arrested at this time was Mirza
Husayn `Ali Nuri, known as Baha'u'llah, an increasingly prominent
Babi leader and thinker from a noble background.  Found innocent of
involvement in the plot, he was nevertheless exiled to Baghdad.  There
in 1863 Baha'u'llah declared himself the promised one of the Bab, and
of all religions.  In the same year the Ottoman government brought
him to Istanbul, then rusticated him to Edirne in Rumelia.  In 1868 he
was further exiled to the pestiferous city of Acre (`Akka) on the coast
of Ottoman Syria, where he lived until his death in 1892.  Baha'u'llah's
main teachings focused on the unity of the world religions, and the
need for world unity, collective security, and peace.  His community in
Iran grew by the 1890s to between 50,000 and 100,000, in a
population of 8 or 9 million, most of them apparently artisans,
merchants and members of the new middle class, though village
peasants were also represented.  The Baha'i faith, has since spread to
virtually every country in the world and numbers some 5.5 million
adherents in the mid-1990s (Cole 1992; Smith; Smith and Momen).

The Authenticity of the New Testament
Although there has not been one monolithic Muslim approach
to the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament, most Muslim thinkers
have been so convinced that these texts were corrupted (Ar. tahrif)
after the advent of Islam that they have been loathe to refer to them.  It
seems clear, as Hava Lazarus-Yafeh has argued, that exact quotation
of biblical texts is extremely rare in medieval Muslim writing, and that
Arabic translation of the Bible . . . can we understand this strange
phenomenon" (113).  Yet Baha'u'llah did accept the authenticity of the
extant New Testament.  Why?  Before attempting to answer this
question, let us examine the issue in Islam.
The Prophet Muhammad (d. 632) was familiar with oral
Christian traditions, and the Qur'an retells the stories of the birth of
John the Baptist and of Jesus, perhaps working from Syriac Christian
folk motifs (which emphasize the Lucan nativity narratives), and
possibly from extra-canonical infancy Gospels (Robinson:15-22).  The
Qur'an speaks of the revelation given to Jesus as the Injil, an Arabic
word derived from the Greek euangelion ("good news"), praising it as
full of guidance and light and as a confirmation of the Torah (Q. 5:49-
50).  Muslims who believe in the corruption of the text do not identify
the Injil praised in the Qur'an with the New Testament, which they
believe distorted (Parrinder:142-151).  Still, there is evidence that the
Qur'an itself employs the word Injil to indicate the New Testament
text, since it instructs the Christians to judge according to what God
has revealed in the "Gospel" and speaks (7:156) of it as being
"written" (maktub an) and "in their possession" (`indahum).
Once an Islamic state and civilization had been established, the
majority of Muslim scholars rejected the existing manuscripts of the
New Testament, along with those of the Hebrew Bible, as inauthentic
and textually corrupt.  This doctrine depended upon an interpretation
of the Qur'an, which says "Some of the Jews pervert words from their
meanings . . . twisting with their tongues and traducing religion"
(4:46).  Most Muslim authors construed such verses to mean that the
Jews (and by analogy Christians) actually changed the text of the
Bible.  A minority of great scholars, such as Tabari and Ibn Khaldun,
suggested that this corruption of the text referred solely to how it was
read and interpreted, not to tampering with the written words
themselves.
nineteenth century, when for the first time Protestant missionaries had
Bibles printed and distributed (Bible in Arabic 1833; Saliba).
Baha'u'llah championed the minority view by upholding the textual
integrity of the Bible in his Book of Certitude, written at Baghdad in
1862 for a member of the prominent Afnan merchant family, an uncle
of the Bab, Sayyid Muhammad Afnan Shirazi (Baha'u'llah: 1970,
1980a; Collins; Buck).  He notes that most Muslim clergymen dismiss
the Bible as textually corrupt, but he insists that the Qur'an referred
only to changes in law and custom introduced by the post-exilic Jews,
for instance, ceasing the biblical practice of stoning adulterers.  He
adds,  "Can a man who believeth in a book, and deemeth it to be
inspired by God, mutilate it?  Moreover, the Pentateuch hath been
spread over the surface of all the earth, and was not confined to Mecca
and Medina, so that they could privily corrupt and pervert its text.
Nay, rather, by corruption of the text is meant that in which all Muslim
divines are engaged today, that is the interpretation of God's holy
Book in accordance with their idle imaginings and vain desires"
(Baha'u'llah, 1970:86; 1980a:67).  To believe in both the Bible and the
Qur'an was seldom attempted, and that Baha'u'llah did so profoundly
affected his image of Jesus.  The Qur'an remains a touchstone for
many of Baha'u'llah's references to Jesus, despite his familiarity with
and willingness to cite the Gospels themselves.  It now functions as a
sermon-like commentary, however, supplementing New Testament
perspectives rather than displacing them altogether.
Baha'u'llah makes it clear that he did not find the mainstream
Muslim theory of textual corruption plausible on rational grounds.
What other, unstated, motivations might he have had?  At this point he
Most Iranian Christians were Armenians or Nestorians, and they had
not become Babis nor did these local Christians ever show much
interest in the Baha'i faith, unlike Iranian Jews and Zoroastrians, who
converted in substantial numbers.  The Book of Certitude was
addressed to a Shi`ite Muslim.  Still, the New Testament was
potentially important for the new religion in a number of ways.  Its
eschatological emphasis on Christ's return and the clearly symbolic
nature of Jesus' parables and prophecies resonated powerfully with
Shi`ite esotericism and expections about the rise of a divinely-guided
Mahdi and the return of Jesus at the End-Time.  In constituting a
largely spiritual document that was held by Christians to have
abrogated a law-oriented Torah, the New Testament offered
Baha'u'llah a model for moving away from the the emphasis on Islamic
law (shari`ah) that pervaded urban, literate Shi`ite culture, as well as a
precedent for abrogating such an elaborated legal code.  The emphasis
on redemptive suffering in the New Testament, centering on a
prophetic figure, justified the combination in the Babi-Baha'i
movement of two strains of Shi`ite spirituality that had been separate:
Reverence for Muhammad as the founder of the dispensation and
conviction that mourning the Prophet's martyred grandson Husayn was
redemptive.  Folk Shi`ism taught that merely weeping for Imam
Husayn (d. 680) was enough to ensure one's entrance into paradise
(Fischer 1980: 13-27; Chelkowski).  Jesus' passion opened up the
possibility that the site of redemption could be a prophetic figure and
so helped justify and infuse with meaning the martyrdom of the Bab
and the imprisonments of Baha'u'llah.  Of himself, Baha'u'llah wrote,
"The Ancient Beauty hath consented to be bound with chains that
mankind may be released from its bondage, and hath accepted to be
made a prisoner within this most mighty Stronghold that the whole
world may attain unto true liberty" (1976:99; 1984:71).

Jesus' Early Life and Career
Let us examine how Baha'u'llah deals with the major events
and themes in the life of Jesus.  Baha'u'llah refers to the virgin birth in
his Book of Certitude, in the course of an argument for the humanity
of past holy figures.  The uncle of the Bab had inquired as to why the
Bab, if he were truly the Mahdi or promised one of Islam, had failed to
establish his sovereignty.  In reply, Baha'u'llah says that most holy
figures of the past had been subject to worldly humiliations, pointing
to Moses's flight after being accused of murder, and calling attention
to Mary's predicament when it became known that she was with child.
"Likewise," he writes, "reflect upon the state and condition of Mary.
So deep was the perplexity of that most beauteous countenance, so
grievous her case, that she bitterly regretted she had ever been born"
(Baha'u'llah 1980a:44-45; 1970:56-57).  As hinted in the Qur'an
(19:22-28), the nativity is here not a sentimental Christmas tale, but a
social scandal that plunges the young mother into despair.  Yet her
faith and steadfastness are rewarded, since her son was made a prophet
by God.
As for Jesus' birth, Baha'u'llah cites it in connection with his
argument that the advent of each Manifestation of God has been
marked both by celestial phenomena such as the appearance of a
comet or star and by a symbolic "star" in the form of a charismatic
human precursor.  The archetype for this conjunction of celestial and
human signs is clearly the nativity story.  Baha'u'llah, quoting Matthew
2:2, speaks of how the star was followed to the realm of Herod, to
Bethlehem, by some Zoroastrians (majus). Baha'u'llah's Iranian
audience may have felt this showed their forebears' involvement with
the Nativity (Baha'u'llah 1970:64; 1980a:49-50).
Baha'u'llah maintained that each major Manifestation of God
was also preceded by a precursor who had attained the mystical state
called by the Sufis the "perfect person" (insan-i kamil).  In the Babi
religion, the harbingers were Shaykh Ahmad al-Ahsa'i (d. 1826) and
was foreseen by such seekers as the Zoroastrian Ruz-Bih, who became
known as Salman.  John the Baptist played this role in Christianity.
of divine knowledge and understanding--it was Yahya [John], son of
Zechariah, who gave unto the people the tidings of the Manifestation
of Jesus" (Baha'u'llah 1970:64; 1980a:44-45).  He quotes Qur'an 3:39,
"God announceth Yahya to thee, who shall bear witness unto the
Word from God, and a great one and chaste," explaining that the
"Word" here is Jesus himself.  He then quotes Mt. 3:1-2 on John the
Baptist's preaching in the wilderness of Judea.
The Book of Certitude was written in 1862, a year or so before
Baha'u'llah declared himself to be the messianic figure, "He whom God
shall make manifest," foretold by the Bab.  Baha'u'llah went on to
found his own religion, and in 1873 revealed a new, concise book of
laws.  The Bab was considered both by Babis and Baha'is an
independent Manifestation of God who had revealed a legal system,
and some Babis found it difficult to accept that it should have been
abrogated so soon.  At this point, the relationship between John the
Baptist and Jesus took on a new resonance for Baha'u'llah and his
followers, since John was recognized in Islam as an independent
prophet (Parrinder: 48).  That John and Jesus could appear so closely
together suggested that there was nothing anomalous in sacred history
about two Manifestations of God having been contemporaneous.  In
one passage, Baha'u'llah says that the son of Zechariah began
performing baptisms by immersion and preaching repentance because
the kingdom of heaven was at hand, quoting Mt. 4:11.  He points out
that John admits that Jesus is mightier than he, despite their being
contemporaries, though the Baptist does so allusively since Jesus' own
mission had not yet been made manifest.  He glosses "he who is
coming after me" as "he who shall manifest himself after me."  He then
cites Mt. 4:13 on John's baptism of Jesus.
Baha'u'llah points out that baptism originated with John and
was his teaching, which the Christians adopted and carried on, and it
appears that his point here is Baha'is are hardly innovating in
continuing some Babi practices.  He says that the fragrance of these
days (the simultaneous appearance of two Manifestations of God) also
wafted in those, for the Bab also foretold the coming of his
contemporary, Baha'u'llah (Ishraq Khavari 1971-73, 7:228-229).
Elsewhere, Baha'u'llah says that John the Baptist, like the Bab, came to
prepare the people of the world for his successor (Baha'u'llah 1892:95-
96; cf. Crossan: 237-38).  Other Babis appear to have criticized
Baha'u'llah for moving too slowly in supplanting Islamic and Babi law,
and here, too, he appealed to the example of Jesus, saying that even
relatively late in his preaching career he only abrogated some laws of
the Torah, as a kindness to Jews who would otherwise find it
impossible to accept him, and that if he had begun with such
abrogations, his crucifixion would have occurred much earlier
(Baha'u'llah 1890-78:6,102).
Baha'u'llah believed that a friction developed between the
followers of Jesus and John,  and that it was paralleled by the rancor
felt toward the Baha'is by the tiny minority of Babis who did not
accept Baha'u'llah.  He writes,  "They that have turned aside from Me
have spoken even as the followers of John (the Baptist) spoke.  For
they, too, protested against Him Who was the Spirit (Jesus) saying:
`The dispensation of John hath not yet ended; wherefore hast thou
come?' (Baha'u'llah 1971a:157; 1982:102)."  New Testament scholars
have also suggested that a certain amount of tension developed
between John's followers and those of Jesus, based on Jn. 3 and 4; that
a Baptist sect existed in its own right is indicated by Acts 18:24-28.
The Mandaean or "Sabean" sect of Iraq, a Gnostic group, gave some
honor to John the Baptist in order to fit into the Islamic legal
framework of a "People of the Book" with their own prophet.  It is not
impossible that Baha'u'llah came into contact with them (and with the
sentiment he paraphrases above) while living in Baghdad
(Fredriksen:24-25; Drower).
The narratives of Jesus' birth and baptism inevitably contained
within them implicit legitimations of the Babi break with Islam and the
Baha'i evolution out of Babism.  As read in an Islamic culture, which
expected a succession of messengers of God, they underlined that God
was ever ready to speak again to his covenantal communities, but that
such a new advent always risked scandal (the virgin birth) and
succession conflicts (as between the followers of the Baptist and the
Christians).  Baha'u'llah employs images of Jesus' birth and baptism in
a presentist fashion to help make Babis and Baha'is of the nineteenth
century comfortable with aspects of their own history.  Just as the
relationship between John the Baptist and Jesus was complex, with
Jesus acknowledging his being from God by accepting baptism from
him, but later expressing approval of only some aspects of John's
teachings, so the relationship between the Bab and Baha'u'llah is one of
both recognition and abrogation.

Jesus' Teachings and Miracles
Baha'u'llah cites Jesus as an example of a Manifestation of God
who lacked material riches and honors.  As noted, the uncle of the Bab
was perplexed by his nephew's lack of sovereignty, just as many Jews
in the time of Jesus found it difficult to accept a crucified Messiah.
Baha'u'llah points out that a number of holy figures revered by Shi`ite
Muslims suffered afflictions in this world, and that even the grandson
of the Prophet Muhammad, the Imam Husayn, was brutally martyred
by the Umayyad government in A.D. 680 when he attempted to lead
an uprising against it.
As a result of Jesus' itinerant style of life and his disdain for
worldly goods (e.g. Mk. 10:21, Mt. 10:9-10), Sufi mystics in Islam
saw him as the perfect ascetic.  Many sayings of such a tenor were
attributed to him or adopted into Sufi and esoteric Shi`ite literature
from Christian ascetics, among whom they circulated orally (King;
Nurbaksh; Ayoub 1976).  It has been suggested that a few of these
Arabic logia or sayings may actually preserve extra-canonical material
valued by the early Eastern churches.  Baha'u'llah occasionally quoted
these Sufi narratives about Jesus, retelling, for instance, the story of
how Jesus and his disciples came upon a dead dog.  While the others
recoiled at the smell, Jesus found something good to say about the
creature, admiring his white teeth (Baha'u'llah in Ishraq-Khavari 1971-
73, 8:128; Nurbaksh:98-100).  With regard to Jesus' self-effacing
mode of life, Baha'u'llah cites another such Sufi anecdote, wherein
Jesus says, "My bed is the dust, my lamp in the night the light of the
moon, and my steed my own feet.  Behold, who on earth is richer than
I?" (Baha'u'llah 1970:130-131; 1980a:100-101).  Jesus is implicitly
invoked as a justification for the Bab, who, like the man from
Nazareth, became penniless and was arrested once he proclaimed his
mission.
Neither the Qur'an (57:27) nor Baha'u'llah approved of
monasticism, celibacy and seclusion from society.  Indeed, Baha'u'llah
calls upon the Christian monks of his day to issue from their cloisters
and marry (Baha'u'llah 1988:60; 1980b:32).  He therefore rejects the
image of "Jesus as monk" prevalent in medieval Europe, and depicts
this ascetic bent in Christ as a result of persecution rather than simply
of choice (cf. Mt. 8:20); (Pelikan: 109-121).  He wrote, "Reflect how
Jesus, the Spirit of God, was, notwithstanding His extreme meekness
and perfect tender-heartedness, treated by His enemies.  So fierce was
the opposition which He, the Essence of Being and the Lord of the
He wandered continually from place to place, deprived of a permanent
abode" (Baha'u'llah 1976:57; 1984:45).  Jesus' asceticism is
interpreted, not as a commitment to self-mortification, but as a "radical
itinerancy" forced on him by the political and ecclesiastical authorities
of his day (cf. Crossan: 346).  Again, there is a parallel with the Bab,
who had to flee to Isfahan and was exiled to Mah-Ku and Chihriq.
But this passage is also evocative of Baha'u'llah's own life, for he, too,
after his arrest in 1852, suffered a series of exiles and persecutions that
deprived him of "a permanent abode."  Like Jesus, Baha'u'llah was
known for his meekness and tender heart, his advocacy of peace and
harmony.  That Jesus was subject to such victimization despite his
exalted station as "Lord of the visible and invisible (malik-i ghayb va
shuhud)" helped explain how Baha'u'llah, the promised one of the ages,
could have suffered similarly.
Jesus nevertheless possessed a spiritual sovereignty.  This is
apparent for Baha'u'llah in the Synoptic story of the healing of the
paralytic, wherein Jesus cures a man and says his sins are forgiven,
which Luke reports to have provoked cavilling from Pharisees.  Jesus
in reply asks if it is easier to heal one paralyzed or to pronounce sins
forgiven "that ye may know that the Son of Man hath power on earth
to forgive sins." (Lk. 5:17-26).  This story has been cited, Baha'u'llah
says, so that the reader "will comprehend the inner meaning of
sovereignty and the like, spoken of in the traditions and scriptures"
(Baha'u'llah 1970:133-135; 1980a:103-104).
Late in his life, Baha'u'llah argued that the sort of sovereignty
Jesus possessed did not conflict with civil authority.  Jesus' position on
the relationship of his followers to the Roman empire, as reported in
the Synoptics and generally interpreted by nineteenth-century
Christians, was increasingly appealing for Baha'u'llah as he founded a
new religion in the Middle East.  He worked to have the Baha'i faith
accepted, along with Judaism, Christianity and Zoroastrianism, as a
minority religion under the Shah of Iran's rule.  To do so, he had to
convince the state that he had no plans to promote a Babi-style
theocracy, but rather accepted the validity of the civil state.  In this
regard, he pledged to Nasiru'd-Din Shah that Baha'is would recognize
the legitimacy of his government (though he did not offer to give way
on matters of principle, such as the Baha'i belief in the need for
constitutional and parliamentary rule), and he cited in support of this
position Mk. 12:17, "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's,
and to God the things that are God's."  He points out that in fact,
Caesar could not have come to the throne against God's will in any
case.  He supports this verse with Qur'an (4:59), "Obey God and obey
the Apostle, and those among you invested with authority," which he
says refers first of all to the Imams and then to secular rulers.  On this
theme, Baha'u'llah also quotes the Apostle Paul's (hadrat-i Bulus-i
Qiddis) Epistle to the Romans (13:1-2), "Let every soul be subject to
the higher powers . . ." (Baha'u'llah 1971a:89=91; 1982:60-61).  Later
Christian exegetes often interpreted Jesus' saying about Caesar and
Paul's epistle as urging Christian quietism; this could be a means of
finding acceptance, e.g., in the Roman Empire (in contrast to the Jews
who revolted in the late 60s, provoking harsh Roman reprisals).
Again, the position of the Baha'is in the nineteenth-century Middle
East was very similar.  Just as Christians were dogged by their
relationship to rebellious Jews, so Baha'is were often blamed for the
turmoil of the earlier Babi period.  It should also be noted here that
Baha'u'llah's willingness to cite the Epistle to the Romans as
authoritative is even more remarkable than his acceptance of the four
Gospels, since Muslims most often saw Paul as a corruptor of
Christianity and importer into it of Hellenistic ideas.
Despite his references to such stories as the healing of the
paralytic to demonstrate Jesus' spiritual sovereignty, Baha'u'llah rejects
a purely literal interpretation of miracle stories about Christ in the
Gospels and in the Qur'an (e.g. 3:49, 5:110).  He is concerned, not in a
positivist fashion with what really happened, but with what the
scriptures intend by such anecdotes, and interprets Jesus' miracles as
symbolic of his spiritual impact.
We testify that when He came into the world, He shed the
splendor of His glory upon all created things.  Through Him
the leper recovered from the leprosy of perversity and
ignorance.  Through Him, the unchaste and wayward were
healed.  Through His power, born of Almighty God, the eyes
of the blind were opened, and the soul of the sinner sanctified.
Leprosy may be interpreted as any veil that interveneth
between man and the recognition of the Lord, his God.  Whoso
alloweth himself to be shut out from Him is indeed a leper,
who shall not be remembered in the Kingdom of God, the
Mighty, the All-Praised.  We bear witness that through the
power of the Word of God every leper was cleansed, every
sickness was healed, every human infirmity was banished.  He
it is Who purified the world.  Blessed is the man who, with a
face beaming with light, hath turned towards Him (Baha'u'llah
1976:86; 1892:93).
In keeping with this figurative approach to hermeneutics or
interpretation, Baha'u'llah in his Book of Certitude shows great interest
in the idea of the kingdom of God as a present reality rather than as an
eschatological idea, and in Jesus' symbolic uses of words such as "life"
and "death."  He argues that the Resurrection Day itself may be
identified as that kingdom of God, and that it is not a historical,
concrete event at the end of linear time but rather a symbol for the
spiritual awakening that is provoked by the advent of any new
Manifestation of God.  He supports this view with reference to Jn. 3:7,
"Ye must be born again," and Jn. 3:5, "Except a man be born of water
and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God."  Thus,
birth, life, and death are figurative references to humankind's
existential responses to the new theophany.  "The purport of these
words," he says of the passages quoted from the Gospel of John, "is
that whosoever in every dispensation is born of the Spirit and is
quickened by the breath of the Manifestation of Holiness is of those
that have attained unto `life' and `resurrection' and have entered into
the `paradise' of the love of God."  Likewise, those who reject the new
Messenger of God are spoken of as "dead" and consumed by "fire."
He also cites Lk. 9:60, where Jesus tells his disciple, whose father is
that scripture employs the word "death" symbolically rather than
literally.  The point is that the "resurrection" of the "dead" refers to the
infusion into deadened souls of the new spiritual vigor of faith and
certitude (Baha'u'llah 1970:118; 1980a:90; Nurbakhsh:84).
Baha'u'llah's Jesus is primarily a teacher of Wisdom rather than
a miracle-worker, and his teachings about the kingdom of God force
him to be constantly on the move because they provoke the ire of the
Establishment.  Jesus' teachings and his emphasis on parables and
figurative uses of words helped legitimate a number of Baha'i
principles.  Among the most urgent tasks facing the Babi-Baha'i
preachers in Iran was to convince Muslim interlocutors that the signs
of the last days mentioned in the Qur'an and the sayings of the Prophet
and the Imams should be read figuratively rather than literally.  Jesus'
parables, and figurative use of ideas such as "death," provided models
for this apologetic task.  His ascetic existence and itineracy provided
an alternative model for prophecy from that of the wealthy and
powerful Prophet Muhammad at the end of his life.  And the politically
quietist interpretation that could so easily be put upon the principle of
rendering unto Caesar provided the Baha'is with a new, non-theocratic
model for their relationship to the state.

To be cont'd

=END=

From: "K. Paul Johnson"
Subject: Re: Compassion vs. Purity
To: Juan R Cole
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 17:28:30 EST
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

According to Juan R Cole:
>
> Aw, c'mon Paul.  You can fault Baha'is if you like for a "purity"
> complex, but you cannot fault Baha'u'llah.

Well, it starts off not too well with the Bab, gets
considerably better under Baha'u'llah, improves dramatically
under `Abdu'l Baha-- and then starts backsliding.  I see Shoghi
Effendi as strongly oriented to purifying the Baha'i community,
for example of Theosophists-- but of anyone else who wasn't
"pure" Baha'i.
>
> One of the major points of the Ridvan Declaration was Baha'u'llah's
> abolition of the concept of ritual impurity.  Everything is now pure from
> his point of view, and this is explicit in the Aqdas.
Like homosexuality, alcohol, marijuana?
>
> At no point does he indicate that women's exemption from some ritual
> duties during menstruation has anything to do with ritual impurity.

I'm not saying he preserves these vestiges consciously or
deliberately-- but that they continue because his broom does
not sweep thoroughly enough.

> Those with bad PMS are after tired and in discomfort.  Likewise,
> Baha'u'llah urged non-association with Azalis, not because they were
> ritually impure, but explicitly in order to avoid conflict and contention.
>
> If your point is that Baha'is have not absorbed this teaching of
> Baha'u'llah, that is possible.  However, Baha'u'llah every bit as much as
> Jesus put compassion first and denied the saliency of ritual pollution.

As always, I bow to your superior knowledge of Baha'u'llah and
limit my comments to what I perceive of Baha'u'llah "as
filtered through the Baha'i culture."

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 16:26:23 -0700 (MST)
To: Burl Barer
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Baha'i & the Perennial Philosophy

Dear Uncle Burl--

I happen to be one-half jewish background myself (and the part that
counts, I might add: on my mothers side) so I fully comprehend your angst at
the anti-semitic theology of Church Christianity. However Schuon is *not*
saying what Paul or the Church fathers were saying. He's merely looking
at the issue from the point of view of transformed symbolism. That's all
he's saying. In fact Schuon concedes (in _Transcendent Unity of
Religions_ & _In the Face of the Absolute_) that in it's own spiritual
universe Israel is very much the elect of God.

The the question of continuity is an interesting one. Perhaps we can have
a thread on the relationship of Judaism to Christianity from a Jewish
perspective. I'm all for it. Mark Foster could help in this regard.

Yours,
Nima

**************************************************************
* Paradox is a characteristic of truth. What communis opinio *
* has of truth is surely no more than an elementary deposit  *
* of generalizing partial understanding, related to truth    *
* even as sulphurous fumes are to lightning.                 *
*                                                            *
* --From the correspondence of Count Paul von Wartenburg     *
*   and Wilhelm Dilthey                                      *
**************************************************************

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 18:41:47 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: "K. Paul Johnson"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Compassion vs. Purity

Paul:

You quoted me

>
>> [Cole:] One of the major points of the Ridvan Declaration was
>> Baha'u'llah's abolition of the concept of ritual impurity.  Everything is
>> now pure from > his point of view, and this is explicit in the Aqdas.

and then replied to this effect:

> [Johnson:]  Like homosexuality, alcohol, marijuana?

In Middle Eastern law, acts can be forbidden for *various* reasons, and
these differ from community to community and act to act.

For instance, in Sunni Islamic law, alcohol is forbidden because it dulls
the mind and robs it of intellect.

In Shi`ite law, alcohol is forbidden because it is ritually impure (lots
of other things are ritually impure, as well, many of them, like
shellfish, in common with the halakhah or Jewish law).

The Baha'i Faith in this regard is more like Sunni Islam than Shi`ism
(something remarked on by `Abdu'l-Baha, who compared it to the Shafi`i
school according to one Ottoman friend).  That is, in the Baha'i faith
alcohol is forbidden, not because it is ritually impure, but because it
ill behoves humans to rob themselves of their God-given intellect and put
themselves in a state where they might act immorally.  Baha'u'llah
forbade opium for the same reason; he did not mention marijuana, but the
Universal House of Justice has extended to prohibition on mind-fogging
substances to it by analogy.

Jesus, by the way, also forbade acts such as fornication.  Forbidding a
behavior, i.e. enacting a law, does not necessarily involve declaring the
act or its object ritually impure.  It can sometimes simply involve
declaring the act improper  :-)

I haven't read Borg's book.  But it sounds to me as though his
description of Jesus would come very close to what I know of Baha'u'llah.
Except, of course, that Baha'u'llah was as concerned with global,
civilizational salvation as with personal salvation.

cheers   Juan

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 15:25:22 -0900
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: subscribe

Welcome to the Baha'i Development Forum!

This e-mail discussion group, the 'Baha'i Development Forum', with the
Baha'i Computer and Communications Association (BCCA). It's focus is on
social and economic development issues, ideas and projects. The forum is
open to all individuals interested in Baha'i development issues, but is
especially oriented to professionals working in the development fields.
Initially only Baha'is are being informed of this forum, but it is also open
to interested professionals who are not Baha'is. To join, send your name

"O Son of Spirit!  Noble have I created thee, yet thou hast abased
thyself. Rise then unto that for which thou wast created."
--  Hidden Words, Arabic #22

The address of the new forum hopes to set the tone of the discussion,
where the basic noble and spiritual nature of man can be recognized. We
hope to use the 'spiritual principles' or 'human values' as a basis for
solving the problems humanity is facing. As the Universal House of Justice
wrote, in A Vision of World Peace, "The essential merit of spiritual
principle is that it not only presents a perspective which harmonizes with
that which is immanent in human nature, it also produces an attitude, a
dynamic, a will, an aspiration, which facilitate the discovery and
implementation of practical measures."  This describes the goal of Baha'i
Development Forum at Noble-Creation@bcca.org.

We hope that the Baha'i Development Forum can serve as a discussion forum
for the writings on the subject of social development, acknowledging that
societies are made up of individuals whose personal spiritual development
is at the heart of all social dynamics, but that the emphasis is less on
personal spiritual development and more on "social" i.e. group, community,
social systems, and its components. The focus is on using the
dynamic principles of the Faith to : 1. Build a new society in which
everyone's welfare and well-being is assured.   2. Alleviating some of the
pain of the transition from one society to another.

We hope to talk about transformation and transition in very practical
terms, including issues such as equity and justice, as well as educational
systems and curricula, health systems and the qualities of physicians in a
new world based on service, etc...  We hope that in fulfilling the
above two points (transition and transformation) we could offer
opinion/advice (concrete), be a resource (share books, and information),
debate methodology and the theories which underpin development programs
today, offer career advice to young people considering a service
profession, etc... all in the spirit of the Faith and using the letters of
the House and OSED as guide as well as the Writings themselves.

Again, we would like to welcome you to the Baha'i Development Forum and
encourage you to contribute to creating the type of forum that will be
useful to you!

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 19:33:29 EST
Subject: News

Technician NCSU Volume 76, Number 54--February 7, 1996

(Headline) Research grants cost student dollars---

*A recent study revealed that federal research grants drive up
student's tuition. --- By Stephen Kiehl, NorthWestern U.

"The federal research grant has long been a sought-after commodity
at universities, but a recent University of Rhode Island study has
concluded that these grants also drive up tuition for students...."

******************
Another perfect example of how vested interests and bureaucracy
has its own monstrous life like Frankenstein. In search of knowledge
not for its own sake, but for the sake of supporting its addiction
to \$\$\$\$\$\$.

quanta

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 17:03:52 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Fwd: Dire warning for Dr. Burl
To: talisman@indiana.edu

---- Begin Forwarded Message
Subject: Dire warning for Dr. Burl
Sender: owner-talisman@indiana.edu
Precedence: bulk

Hey there Dr. Burl,

You are in deep trouble!
*Well that is nothing new for my friend.

was not
pleased that such misinformation was posted on a Baha'i discussion list
and
asked me to set things straight (and mentioned something about Dr. Burl
getting a life).

*My dear Sandy
I am given to understand there is a new and untrue rumor that your
sweet vague child is a founder member of the Maxwell Hells Angels Club.
Dr. Burl as your daughter well knows own daughter attended Maxwell.

Helen has been a vegan for the past two years. FYI, a vegan takes no
drugs,
eats no animal products, doesn't even wear leather or drink coffee or
tea,
and certainly doesn't smoke. As she says, "tell him that there's no
such
thing as a vegan cigarette."
You should tell your daughter the enrollement last week UCSC was a girl
who is a vegan.
Helen is working for the Sierra Club and attending Central Community
college. She is not in any sort of trouble and is doing very well. Any
remarks made to the contrary on this list are the result of Dr. Burl's
deep
confusion...

As a mom, I'm proud of her and the way she is taking charge of her
life.

Sandy Fotos
I suspect we would not get to adulthood without our mothers being proud
of us especially when we do not deserve it.

>
>Any further questions, ask Sandy Fotos who is  getting on a plane to
>track down her sweet little Helen, a recent Maxwell Graduate, who
> was last seenwith a Lucky Strike dangling from her lips, having the
>Last

=END=

From: coleman@olimp.irb.hr
Date: Fri, 09 Feb 1996 02:02:47 MET-DST
To: TALISMAN@indiana.edu
Subject: Dialogue, argument and quarrels

The previous message I sent to Talisman, which was my first debut, met some
interesting remarks, encouragements and criticisms. The criticisms were on
the wavelength of "don't argue, it's not nice!" or "no one can do much to
critique Buddhism since there is little in the Baha'i Faith on i{t" and
"We heard all this before; there's nothing new that can be added."
Well, dear friends, if I may call you that, as aphysicist who is used to
constructive "arguments" that accomplished much in theoretical physics over
many years, I would say that for a physicist not to "argue" would be his or
her professional death. Unfortunately, argument bears a negative connotation
with many people. There are arguments that are constructive usually. Ther
there are quarrels that are called arguments, but there is a difference.
Baha'is have much to learn about consultative procedures that where clashes
of opinions bring out sparks of truth. Have you experienced many significant
sparks in your consultations. We physicists could very well serve as a model
for constructive consultation. Read "Brighter Than A Thousand Suns", a true
Gottingen University to the Manhattan Project to the placing of man on the
moon. In this book, the science writer brings out , for example, the excite-
ment of non-physicists gathering around the physicists discussing the ideas
experiencing the fascinating constructive arguments over the atomic structure.
Down the Halls of Brookhaven or out in Los Alomos you could either be engaged
in or watch other physicists excitingly discuss their clashing opinions from
which many sparks of truth can come.
Should I quit Talisman because of the "negative" criticisms. Bruce ab and
I are coming to a critical mass in our arguments, which is primarily, contrary
to the critiques, dialogue ( a conversation between two or more people). Ingrid
does not want us to transport our G-ETHICS "debates" to myTalisman or any
other forum, it seems. My laSt request before I unsubscribe to G-ETHICS or
Talisman is to allow Bruce and I to develop this "critical mass" of
arguments . If no one wants to hear what promises to become an exciting
dialogue of arguments (based primarily on Buddhist concepts not Baha'i
concepts - except insofar as they are material) then we'll "bug off" . It
might be of interest to some of you that I think both Bruce and I are
starting to learn something from each other or at least to independently
investigate the profound realities of the other guy's religious views. So,

With Loving Baha'i Greetings
Dr. Jack Coleman, Croatia

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 17:26 PST
To: SFotos@eworld.com
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Dire warning for Dr. Burl
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>Hey there Dr. Burl,
> Helen is working for the Sierra Club and attending Central Community
>college. She is not in any sort of trouble and is doing very well. Any
>remarks made to the contrary on this list are the result of Dr. Burl's deep
>confusion..

Oh, I never said she was in trouble, nor did I say the Lucky was

Actually, I have met Helen and she is a sweet, kind, polite person...at
least she was polite to me, but it may have been pity for a confused old man
such as myself.  However, as my daughter plans on visiting Helen in Seattle
in March, I am compiling a list of bail bondsman.

Dr. Burl

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 14:04:44 JST
From: "Stephen R. Friberg"
To: "K. Paul Johnson"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Compassion vs. Purity

Dear K. Paul:

Come on!  You're just trying to be provocative, aren't you?
Are you *really* after a serious dialogue?

Yours, Steve

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 05:24:01 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: "Marguerite K. Gipson"
Subject: RE: Welcoming & Affirming Gays

I recently posted the following article on Soc.Religion.Bahai. Most of it is
old news here but I feel that the key words are really at the end of the
article, namely, "Let's stop sounding like Pat Robertson and sound more like
'Abdu'l-Baha." And to paraphrase someone else: "I can't define bashing but I
know it when I see it." And friends, it's getting very tedious.

Here's my post:

The Universal House of Justice did, in fact, make a brief comment on the
subject of transsexuality:

A number of sexual problems, such as homosexuality and trans-sexuality
can well have medical aspects, and in such cases recourse should
certainly be had to the best medical assistance.

16. From a letter of the Universal House of Justice to an individual
believer, January 12, 1973; cited in Messages from the Universal
House of Justice, 1968-1973, pp.  110-111; also cited in LG, #1222,
p.  365.

As Alma explained, there is now an increasing amount of research that
points to prenatal causes of transsexuality also sometimes called gender
dysphoria.  There is little controversy over this because it affects
very few individuals unlike the issue of homosexuality and its painful
nature vs. nurture debate.  I can't comment on the topic of
homosexuality for lack of knowledge.  The Universal House of Justice has
written a detailed statement about the Baha'i position on that topic.
It's up to individual Baha'is to decide how to work that position out in
their own lives.  It is not the mission of any Baha'i to tell people how
to live or how to practice their faith.  The letter from the House is
compassionate and clear.  Whether it will be moderated at some future
time is pure speculation and a useless exercise in my view.

I have written in another forum that the issue of homosexuality is a far
greater test for the Baha'i community than it is for the individual
homosexual.  There are said to be millions of homosexuals in the United
States alone.  When we, as Baha'is, pick and choose who we shall teach
and who we shall condemn, it will be a tragic day indeed.  That would
also violate the clear intention of the letter from the House.  I urge
anyone who doubts this to reread the letter.

I am a Baha'i transsexual who has moved across the gender line, I would
like to compliment Alma on her clear and objective description of this
syndrome.  I have a great deal of fear that the strong homophobia and
judgmental attitude that characterizes this forum and some of the Baha'i
community will cause individual Baha'is to confuse these issues and
associate transsexuality with homosexuality.  They are, in fact,
unrelated.  Discussing this in great detail is beyond the scope of this
forum.  In my own life, I uphold the principle of chastity and that
strengthens and confirms me on the path that I've taken.  No Baha'i
institution has an administrative interest in what I'm doing and in fact
they are very supportive.  Some individuals, however, have become
distant and barely polite due to their discomfort, lack of knowledge,
and dare I say, lack of ability to internalize some of the teachings
about how we behave toward other souls.

I rarely read this newsgroup because of the frequent repetition of
topics and because of the increasing frequency of what many outsiders as
well as Baha'is take to be judgmental or narrow-minded posts.  I would
ask people to be concerned about their own behaviors and to actively
teach the Faith.  If they were teaching instead of preaching they would
have no time to waste on these divisive issues.  Homophobia is no
different from racism which has been identified as the most challenging
issue of our time both for Baha'is and those whom it seeks to embrace.

It seems presumptuous and unwise to write an FAQ on the topic of
homosexuality.  That implies that the Universal House of Justice and the
Guardian were somehow unclear in their writings.  The letter from the
House should be sufficient.  Certainly such a task should not be
undertaken without the explicit approval of a Baha'i institution.  And
why is it necessary at all?  Do we have FAQs about drugs, racism, crime,
child abuse and such?  They're not controversial are they or are they
just far less important?

Let's stop sounding like Pat Robertson and sound more like 'Abdu'l-Baha.

With Baha'i love,

Hannah R.

----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of Marguerite K. Gipson
Sent: 	Thursday, 08 February, 1996 8:18 AM
To: 	Robert Lee Green
Cc: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	Re: Welcoming & Affirming Gays

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 04:55:35 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, "QUANTA DAWNLIGHT" ,
belove@sover.net, belove@sover.net
Subject: RE: Male and female attributes

But in my case, androgyny is entirely superficial and just a matter of
appearance. I'm moving across the line to where I belong organically as well
as spiritually. I'm in a medically and psychologically supervised program to
change my sex. The programs follows well-established standards of care and
treatment. Admission to it is rigorous and difficult. Relying on experts and
doctors is the right thing for me as a Baha'i to do. The change doesn't happen
overnight. So, at this early stage, I look ambiguous. It's hard for people to
tell what I am. At work, no one is concerned about it because I work in such a
unique place. So, while my opening statement was a little whimsical, it was
also accurate.

Interlude: I write my posts in this forum to enhance understanding of gender
issues from a point of view that this or any other audience will rarely
encounter, that of a transgendered Baha'i. My posts have no particular
authority about them but they are, hopefully, a little stimulating. Believe
me, I'm very unaccustomed to sharing any of this. Willingness to share this
experience is a very recent development.

I'm not one of those people who in mid-life "got in touch with his feminine
side." I've never been out of touch with it. My so-called masculine behaviors
were learned and simply constituted a masquerade. I always knew who and what I
was but I didn't take action before. Now I am. I had to learn not to hide it
and not to be ashamed of it. Not to fear the consequences of being discovered.
Not to loathe the essence of my nature but to celebrate it and be thankful for
it. My behavior hasn't changed and it won't. <>

I'd like to suggest that we can view gender and sex conceptually as a classic
RGB color chart. The red, green and blue primaries are in three circles
forming a cloverleaf pattern. In the center where they overlap, the
combination produces white light. Gender is one circle. Biological sex is
another. I feel that spirit is the third circle and the overlapping area
represents harmony and completeness. We can represent anyone by the same
visual metaphor but the amount of overlap has extreme variance. Just as the
primary colors that comprise white light have indefinite boundaries and
contain within their spectral areas a vast number of related hues, so do sex,
gender and spirit. I can't explain it any other way. I'm suggesting an image
for meditation.

You mention that people are often intolerant of sexual or gender variances
that they don't understand. Sometimes they are more than that. They are
violent and dangerous. I've already experienced some of that but don't wish to
discuss it here. I'm not on a safe path by any means or at any level. It was
not a choice for me but a matter so fundamental as to be worth any risk or any
cost. I was acutely aware of my sex/gender incongruence as early as age five.
In the immortal words of Jessica Rabbit: "I'm not bad. The cartoonist just
drew me this way."

I've written simple fuzzy logic code at work and studied it a little but it's
not my area of professional expertise. Although the technical literature on it
is esoteric, it's a very important area of research. I don't have enough
knowledge of the technology or theory to make a useful comment.

'and then the day came when the risk
to remain tight in a bud was
more painful than the risk
it took to blossom."         --Anais Nin

Hannah,

----------
From: 	belove@sover.net
Sent: 	Thursday, 08 February, 1996 10:06 AM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu; QUANTA DAWNLIGHT; belove@sover.net; Hannah E.
Reinstein
Subject: 	RE: Male and female attributes

On Thu, 8 Feb 96 05:52:42 UT  Hannah E. Reinstein wrote:
of the
>Manifestation of the Creator/God. Be patient with me. I'm passing
through an
>androgynous stage. But it's just a phase. I'll grow out of it.
>

Hannah, it's been years since I was reading in this area but, as I
remember, androgyny was said to be a phase one grew into, a kind of
fulfillment in which it was possible to identify with what is
commonly called "both masculine and feminine sides."  In more
ordinary language that might mean that, as a man, in maturity you
begin to feel comfortable acting in ways that  you used to avoid
because they were feminine.  And also, as a woman, you begin to feel
comfortable acting in ways you eschewed because you considered them
to be "masculine." So, in the old days in the United States when sex
roles were more rigidly deliniated than now, a mid-life or later man
might freely delight in fussy over grandchildren and in being very
"motherly" toward them. Or he might delight in nursing his wife
through a bad cold.  And an older woman might take delight in
building a business or being a tough bargainer.

Androgyny meant that you would be free to realize parts of yourself

It wasn't merely a matter of outward appearances.

The point I'm raising here is that sex, even sex definition, the hard
wired part, is not clearly either this or that. Even sex definition
has a fuzzy boundary in the physical world. It is interesting to some
and unfortunate for others that the human community is so intolerant
of these gray areas.

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 21:31:48 -0800 (PST)
From: Steven Coles
To: TALISMAN@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Dialogue, argument and quarrels

Steven S. Coles,  MS applied physics
Seattle, Washington State, U.S.A.

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 03:40:51 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, belove@sover.net
Subject: RE: apologies

Well, there you go. I send out email messages and later I get an ugly return
message with scores of addresses and codes telling me that my message wasn't
delivered. But sometimes it's a lie! The first lesson we learn at
Microsoft--my esteemed employer--is this: NEVER trust a computer! You have to
watch them constantly. Now, people you can trust. People tend to employ
straight line logic, act with predictable consistency, do exactly what they're
told, never tire, and never disappoint. But computers are a different story.
You can't trust the little stinkers .

Hannah

The Artist Formerly Known As Cary  :-)

----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of belove@sover.net
Sent: 	Thursday, 08 February, 1996 6:51 AM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	apologies

Dear all,

Sorry but for some reason I was receiving messages that the mail I
sent was being returned undelivered and I've re-posted a number of my
letters. And now it appears that people are getting some of the
messages. I don't want it to appear like I'm nagging.

I said, I don't want it to appear like I'm nagging.

Love,

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/08/96
Time: 06:51:57

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 03:20:18 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, "Juan R Cole"
Subject: RE: Baha'u'llah's feminine diction

Thank you! I knew intuitively that this was true. Now we have a clear and
beautifully documented example. There are probably hundreds of such examples.
Keep posting these gems. An understand of gender at a deep level can only
enhance us all spiritually. Such an understanding has nothing in common with
popular perceptions.

Gratefully,

Hannah

veni, vidi, velcro - I came, I saw, I stuck around

----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of Juan R Cole
Sent: 	Wednesday, 07 February, 1996 21:41 PM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	Baha'u'llah's feminine diction

I think there are many places where Baha'u'llah adopts a self-referential
feminine diction in Arabic (which shows gender in a way Persian does not).

One example that comes to mind is the beginning of the Tablet of Ahmad.
The "nightingale" is actually in Arabic the female Dove of Paradise (hadhihi
warqatu'l-firdawsi), and *She* singeth (tughanni) upon the twigs of the
Tree of Eternity, *She* proclaims (tubashshir) to the sincere ones, and
so forth throughout the first paragraph.  Baha'u'llah here speaks of
Himself with feminine grammar, because of the referent of the female Dove
as the symbol of His Self (Self/nafs is also feminine and when He refers
to His "self" he likewise uses feminine grammar).

cheers   Juan

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 21:33:13 -0800
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: carmen@ucla.edu (Carmen Mathenge)
Subject: Re: Sex, Relative Truth, and Video Terminals
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

At 06:33 AM 1/30/96 UT, Hannah E. Reinstein wrote:

>However I did state that any test so profound
>must be a Divine bounty of some kind.

Dear Hannah,

I can't even imagine what it must be like to have such a test as you
describe, but I'm in awe of anyone with a faith so strong as to be able to
make the above statement while in the midst of it!

With loving Baha'i greetings,
Carmen
99999999999999999999999999999999999999
Carmen Mathenge
Lawndale, California, USA
99999999999999999999999999999999999999

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 21:53:24 -0800 (PST)
From: Steven Coles
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Dire warning for Dr. Burl

What's to compile?  Bail bondsmen are listed on pages 281 through 285 of
the Seattle yellow pages.

But hey!  How many cities have a combination nautical chart, Native
American art, and Baha'i book store?  Mike Harris's is located at 6270 NE
Bothell Way, Seattle, WA  98155.

Steven S. Coles
Seattle, Washington State, U.S.A.

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 22:50:18 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: frlw@midway.uchicago.edu, Masumian@mail.utexas.edu,
Noorbakhsh.Monzavi@hibo.no
Subject: Reuters 2/8/96 (fwd)

>    'IRAN' STORIES
>Transmission date: 96/02/08
>  1. 13:18 IRAN SAYS U.N. RIGHTS ENVOY FREE TO VISIT PRISONS
>  2. 12:10 PAKISTAN, IRAN SEE PROGRESS TOWARDS AFGHAN PEACE
>  3. 09:04 IRAN'S LEADER SAYS ISRAEL IS AN ARTIFICIAL STATE
>  4. 06:51 PAKISTAN AND IRAN DISCUSS AFGHAN PEACE EFFORTS
>
>=START=   XMT: 13:18 Thu Feb 08  EXP: 3 :00 Sun Feb 11
>
>
> Iran says U.N. rights envoy free to visit prisons
>    TEHRAN, Feb 8 (Reuter) - A U.N. envoy due to investigate human rights in
>Iran next week will be free to visit prisons and courts, a senior official said
>in remarks published on Thursday.
>    ``There are no restrictions on the visit of human rights officials and they
>may visit each and every Iranian prison and talk to the inmates,'' deputy head
>of the Judiciary Hossein Karimi told the English-language daily Iran News.
>    Maurice Copithorne, the U.N. Human Rights Commission's special rapporteur
>on Iran, is due to begin a six-day visit to the country on Saturday.
>    ``Mr Copithorne may also visit any Iranian court, and we are ready to
>provide all necessary facilities to make his job easy,'' Karimi, a Shi'ite
>Moslem Cleric, told the newspaper.
>    ``We want just one thing from Mr Copithorne: that he should view the events
>in Iran without being biased and report the facts,'' he added.
>    In December, two other United Nations human rights experts were invited to
>Iran for the first such visits by U.N. investigators for four years.
>    U.N. bodies have repeatedly accused Iran of widespread human rights abuses,
>but Tehran officials have rejected the criticisms saying they were based on
>biased reports or on lack of knowledge about Islamic principles on which Iran's
>laws are based.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 12:10 Thu Feb 08  EXP: 2 :00 Sun Feb 11
>
>
> Pakistan, Iran see progress towards Afghan peace
> (Releads with Iranian comment, meeting with Bhutto)
>    By Raja Asghar
>    ISLAMABAD, Feb 8 (Reuter) - Senior Pakistani and Iranian officials held
>talks on Thursday on how to restore peace to Afghanistan and both sides
>reported progress.
>    Pakistan's top foreign ministry official Najmuddin Sheikh said after
>meeting Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Alaeddin Boroujerdi that they had agreed
>to stay in touch.
>    Boroujerdi arrived in Islamabad after spending two days in Afghanistan
>meeting several leaders, including President Burhanuddin Rabbani in Kabul and a
>leading rival, former prime minister Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, in the eastern town
>    ``Rabbani has expressed his willingness to relinquish power and my talks
>with Afghan leaders in Jalalabad focused on how and to whom power should be
>transferred,'' Boroujerdi, quoted by the official APP news agency, said after
>meeting Pakistani officials.
>    He also briefed Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto on his talks with
>    Sheikh told reporters that he had discussed with Boroujerdi whether Afghan
>representing all political and ethnic groups.
>    ``I would not say there was a great air of optimism, but slowly there was
>some progress towards a solution and we agreed to continue our discussions,''
>he said.
>    Boroujerdi has visited Afghanistan several times in recent months and was
>    His current visit coincided with one by northern Afghan opposition warlord
>General Abdul Rashid Dostum, who arrived for talks with Pakistani leaders on
>Wednesday.
>    Sheikh said after meeting Dostum that the former communist general said he
>was ready to join any settlement that envisaged a broad-based government to
>replace Rabbani.
>    Sheikh said Iran and Pakistan agreed on the need for a representative
>legitimacy of Rabbani's government.
>    He said Iran maintained that it would deal with whoever was in power in
>Kabul while Pakistan saw ``some merit'' in the Afghan opposition argument that
>    Iran has been trying to mend ties between Kabul and Islamabad, badly
>strained since demonstrators sacked the Pakistani embassy in the Afghan capital
>in September.
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 09:04 Thu Feb 08  EXP: 9 :00 Sun Feb 11
>
>
> Iran's leader says Israel is an artificial state
>    TEHRAN, Feb 8 (Reuter) - Iran's supreme leader said on Thursday that Israel
>was an artificial state and that Tehran's opposition to it was the basis of
>Western enmity towards the Islamic republic.
>    ``The government and the people of Iran believe that the existence of
>Israel is false and artificial,'' Ayatollah Ali Khamenei was quoted by
>    ``In fact, there is no nation called Israel, rather Zionist leaders, acting
>solely on racism, have gathered some people from around the world and set up a
>made-to-order state in order to occupy Palestine,'' Khamenei was quoted by the
>    ``The opposition of the Iranian government and people to what is under way
>in the Middle East under the guise of peace (is) the basis of the enmity by
>Arrogance (the West) against the Islamic state (Iran),'' Khamenei told a
>gathering of Air Force commanders and personnel on the occasion of Iran's Air
>Force Day.
>    ``We believe that what is under way in the Middle East is not peace in its
>true sense, but an accord to oppress a nation (Palestinians),'' he said.
>    The United States imposed a trade and investment ban against Iran in June,
>accusing it of trying to develop nuclear arms and of sponsoring terrorism,
>including by backing Palestinian groups opposed to the peace accords with
>Israel.
>    Iran has condemned the peace agreements between Israel and the PLO as a
>sell-out, but said it only gave political support to Islamic Palestinian groups
>opposing the accords.
>    Tehran has also denied other U.S. charges, saying they were motivated by
>Washington's opposition to the existence of an independent Islamic government
>in Iran.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 06:51 Thu Feb 08  EXP: 6 :00 Sun Feb 11
>
>
> Pakistan and Iran discuss Afghan peace efforts
>    By Raja Asghar
>    ISLAMABAD, Feb 8 (Reuter) - Pakistani and Iranian officials held talks on
>Thursday on how to restore peace in their war-shattered neighbour Afghanistan,
>officials said.
>    Pakistan's top foreign ministry official Najmuddin Sheikh said after
>meeting Iran's deputy foreign minister Alaeddin Boroujerdi that both sides had
>agreed to stay in touch.
>    Boroujerdi arrived in Islamabad earlier after spending two days in
>Afghanistan for separate talks with several leaders, including President
>Burhanuddin Rabbani and one of his main rivals, former prime minister Gulbuddin
>Hekmatyar.
>    Sheikh said he had discussed with Boroujerdi whether Afghan leaders were
>ready to ``move towards the idea of a broad-based government'' representing all
>political and ethnic groups.
>    ``I would not say there was a great air of optimism, but slowly there was
>some progress towards a solution and we agreed to continue our discussions,''
>he said.
>    Boroujerdi has visited Afghanistan several times in recent months and was
>    His current visit coincided with one by northern Afghan opposition warlord
>General Abdul Rashid Dostum, who arrived for talks with Pakistani leaders on
>Wednesday.
>    Sheikh said after meeting Dostum on Thursday that the former communist
>general had said he was ready to join any settlement that envisaged a
>    Dostum was also due to discuss the Afghan crisis with Prime Minister
>Benazir Bhutto and President Farooq Leghari.
>    Sheikh said Iran and Pakistan agreed on the need for a representative
>legitimacy of Rabbani's government.
>    He said Iran maintained that it would deal with whoever is in power in
>Kabul while Pakistan saw ``some merit'' in the Afghan opposition argument that
>    Iran has been trying to mend ties between Kabul and Islamabad, badly
>strained since demonstrators sacked the Pakistani embassy in the Afghan capital
>in September.
>    Pakistan said last week the Afghan government had sent an apology and a
>compensation offer in an effort to meet Islamabad's conditions for reopening
>its mission in Kabul.
>    Sheikh said the Rabbani government's position remained unclear. ``We are a
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>
>

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: "Hannah E. Reinstein" , talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Fri, 9 Feb 1996 01:35:13 EST
Subject:       talking in the dark

Dear folks,

When Dr. Walbridge gets me on board. I'll know what's going on and
make more sensible remarks. At least I hope.

Thank you for sending cc of your post regarding this issue.
My most simplest thoughts on the gender issue is this. There are only
humanqualities. These qualities can be expressed through anyone
regardless
of male and female. For instance, my stepfather was one of the most
gentle, caring and kind person who would change my little sister's
diapers give them baths ( I am 18 and 21 years older than both) and
take them for a walk. Children adore him. Whereas my mom was more of
a disciplinarian. I remember how my husband used to get up in the
middle of the night on several occasions and ask me to nurse the baby
because he heard her moving around. He was sleepless for a week
after Ayla and I got home. He was so attentive and worried. I think if
he could, he would have nursed her. He too had those maternal
instincts.

Most of what we see in the world today in terms of male and female
identification is a result of cultural environment. Religion has
tremendous influence in this area as well. Read the Genesis. Do you
see anything about a woman's name after Eve? It is only after seven
generations of Eve that women's name are mentioned.
Weren't there any women around until Zillah and Adah? How did Eve
feel about her son killing another son? Did she not have a daughter?
Why only male descendants are mentioned and listed carefully?
I always wondered and asked and got no answers, but angry and strange
looks from men and women alike. It was like pushing the wrong button
of a programmed robot.
Hannah, thanks for sharing such intimate
thoughts so courageously. You will be remembered as a Baha'i pioneer
in this area in the future. I sense your freedom. God bless.

love,
quanta

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 01:46:39 -0500 (EST)
From: Jonah Winters
To: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Two (?) Genders

Dear Hannah et al.,
When it comes to discussing human behaviours and
self-understandings, be they learned or inherent, I understand the
possibility of there being a gender spectrum.  But how would you relate
this with a notion of duality such as the Taoist in which relatively
clear-cut dualisms are both the fabric of the universe and as well the
motive force behind creation, change, and dissolution?
Or, is it perhaps improper and misleading for me to try to
approach a subject based on internal experience with a
philosophico-analytical analysis of ontology?
If it is off-base to discuss such an experiential awareness of
gender philosophically, then that sure undercuts the standard write-off
response we Baha'is give when we explain to non-Baha'is why homosexuality
is "against nature" according to the writings (Aqdas p. 223), doesn't it?

Randomly, -Jonah

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Jonah and Kari Winters
33 Endean Avenue / Toronto, Ontario / M4M-1W5 / (416) 461-3527

=END=

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 96 23:25 PST
To: Steven Coles
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Dire warning for Dr. Burl
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>What's to compile?  Bail bondsmen are listed on pages 281 through 285 of
>the Seattle yellow pages.
>
>Swell! Now, you might pick a nice tatoo parlour for SFotos -- she is
honestly getting a tatoo after Bosch. In fact, perhaps she will be inspired
to have something mystical tatood on her spiritual self -- such as a
likeness of Sherman.

BB

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Thu, 08 Feb 1996 23:01:20 +0100 (MET)
Subject: from Sonja-feminism is beautiful
To: talisman@indiana.edu

From Sonja

Quanta,
When I read that you equated racism with femininism, I laughed but
only briefly, because I identify with feminism as strongly as I do being
a Bahai.
Feminism like the Bahai Faith is about creatng equality, and like the
Bahai Faith there are many ways and types of people involved.

So I don't know what you think Feminism is, but perhaps it might be
an idea to accept the definition/perspective that an insider gives it,
much like not judging a definition of the Bahai Faith that a Jehovah's
Wittness might give.
Feminism 1. the principle that women should have political, economic,
and social rights equal to those of men. 2. movement to win these
rights. (Collins Concise English Dictionary)

Quanta, have a look in your dictionary if you don't believe me.

I'd even go as far as to say that anyone who geniunely believes in
equality and is striving to achieve this is a feminist. When people
(usually women by the way) tell me that it's not Bahai to be a
Feminist, if I can, I explain that damning Feminism weakens any
progress towards equality. It's pure intolerance, just like damning
Bahais for having differing ways of thinking or working, just because
their interpretations are not what we expect.

feministically (where I can't say femininally-'cos it's not as easy to
identify-but I'll save gender and sexually for when I have more time)
yours,
Sonja

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 01:18:57 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: technical assistance needed

Talizens--

Sorry to take up bandwidth with this question, but my manual here might as
well be in 8th c. BC Babylonian :-) It's not making any sense.

without a Windows program. The communications software I'm using is
Quicklink II. My printer (HP Desk Jet) does seem to want to work. What am
I doing wrong?

Nima

**************************************************************
* Paradox is a characteristic of truth. What communis opinio *
* has of truth is surely no more than an elementary deposit  *
* of generalizing partial understanding, related to truth    *
* even as sulphurous fumes are to lightning.                 *
*                                                            *
* --From the correspondence of Count Paul von Wartenburg     *
*   and Wilhelm Dilthey                                      *
**************************************************************

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Thu, 08 Feb 1996 23:05:39 +0100 (MET)
Subject: affirming/accepting homosexuals
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Re: the question of how a practising homosexual could be accepted
in the Bahai Faith.

The Sept 95 letter from the Universal House of Justice that was
recently posted in response to your first question was posted on
Talisman some months ago and then there was a discussion ranging
from treating homosexuality as something undesirable (the view in the
Sept. letter) to looking at what Baha'u'llah actually said (he wrote of
sex with boys as shameful) and seeing how these two views related in
the light of other teachings in the Bahai Faith such as universal
equality, a value of diversity, balancing science with religious views,
etc., along with speculation with what Baha'u'llah's intention could have
been.
There is no clear view in the sense that while the UHJ letter clearly
treats homosexuality as undesirable, for some Bahais such as myself,
this goes against the principle of equality, (this is in talking about
homosexuality within the same limits as for heterosexuality - so I am
not talking about sex per se but sexual orientation) as I do believe
sexuality is something that is such a powerful influence that no one can
really determine whether it is nature or nurture.
Why I say that it goes against the principal of equality, has nothing to
do with sex, but intolerance. And sad to say, that means homophobia
exists in the Bahai Faith.
So in short, I am sure any homosexual would be welcomed but they
will be in for some difficult times, if they encounter Baha'is who
believe that homosexually is a deformity. But I believe any homosexual
who is a Bahai is an absolute blessing, just as Dan is, because it helps
us to work at how does the Bahai Faith become a religion for all.
Sonja

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 09:50:43 +0100
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: lundberg@algonet.se (Zaid Lundberg)
Subject: subscribe

=END=

Date: Fri, 09 Feb 96 07:00:05
From: "Stockman, Robert"
Message-Id: <9601098238.AA823878005@usbnc.usbnc.org>
aw515@freenet.carleton.ca, cxe5@musica.mcgill.ca, diessner@lcsc.edu,
dmalouf@nmu.edu, hatcher@chuma.cas.usf.edu, momen@northill.demon.co.uk,
cbuck@ccs.carleton.ca, seena@castle.ed.ac.uk, ABSCOMM@usbnc.org,
wcol@loc.gov
Subject: New World Order in Baha'i Perspective Conference

Dear Friends:

Here is a report about the Institute for Baha'i Studies' recent
conference on the New World Order.

-- Rob

------------------------------------------------------------------

The Institute for Baha'i Studies sponsored a conference on
"The New World Order in Baha'i Perspective" January 26-28. Eleven
talks were given over the weekend that focused on three broad
themes. The audience numbered fifty.
"Interdependence and the New World Order" was the theme of
the conference's Saturday morning session. Holly Hanson presented
the conference's keynote address on "The Implementation of
Interdependence," which noted that Baha'u'llah's world order is
not new simply because it is global; earlier "world orders" were
comprehensive on a regional scale. Rather, the world order of
Baha'u'llah is new because it is both world-encompassing and
characterized by justice. Following Hanson's paper, Augusto
Lopez-Claros talked by videotape on "Interdependence,
Cooperation, and the Emergence of Global Institutions," exploring
the economic integration caused by the transportation and
communications revolutions and the political integrative forces
that have resulted.
"The Theory and Practice of Organizing Internationally," the
conference's second theme, dominated presentations on Saturday
afternoon and evening. Michael L. Penn spoke about "The World
Order of Baha'u'llah and the Future of International Relations,"
exploring the ideological underpinnings of the "realist" and
"idealist" perspectives on world order and noting that the world
order of Baha'u'llah satisfies the most important concerns and
pessimisms of the "realists" while giving practical expression to
the lofty vision of humanity's future articulated by the
idealists.
Manooher Mofidi spoke about "Post Cold-War Reflections on
the Theory and Practice of Collective Security," tracing the
excitement and despair engendered by collective security efforts
in the Persian Gulf, Bosnia, and Somalia, and offering a
reconceptualization of national sovereignty based on the Baha'i
teachings. Brian Lepard discussed "The Prospects for a Permanent
United Nations Military Force: Lessons from the U.N.'s First
Fifty Years," delineating the various approaches to establishing
a permanent U.N. force and the controversies they have created.
The afternoon was completed by Jaleh Dashti-Gibson's talk
about "Collective Sanctions After the Cold War: A Harbinger of
the Lesser Peace?" which contrasted the pessimism commonly
characterizing scholarly assessments of the value of sanctions
with the positive assessment of them in the context of the Baha'i
teachings on collective security.
Saturday evening, Keith Christian Jensen, by videotape,
discussed "Taxation and Voluntary Sharing: Current Considerations
for Funding the United Nations--Some Thoughts with a Baha'i
Perspective," summarizing various proposals that have been made
for funding United Nations activities and considering some of the
characteristics of the huququ'llah that might avoid their
difficulties.
Saturday evening concluded with a lively discussion about
encouraging more Baha'is to prepare themselves to engage fellow
Baha'is and non-Baha'is with substantive examinations and
discussions of the many aspects of world order. Many suggestions
were made for a second conference on world order in January 1997.
"The New World Order and the Individual" was the focus of
the Sunday morning presentations. Jeff Gruber's paper "Language
in the New World Order" described the natural evolution that will
emergence of a single universal language that will embody
humanity's full linguistic heritage. Constance Chen spoke about
"The New Family: The Role of the Father, the Role of the Mother,"
stressing the principle of equality in the creation of Baha'i
families. Sunita Gandhi's "Moral Education: Building the
Foundation of the New World Order" described the City Montessori
School in Lucknow, India, the world's largest private school, and
how it has applied Baha'i principles in its curriculum and
administration. The program closed with Robert McClelland's
"Citizenship in the New World Order," which explored the changes
in the conceptualization of state citizenship that would be
necessary for a concept of "world citizenship" to develop.
Service was seen as a key ingredient in both types of
citizenship.
All the presentations stimulated lively discussions. A
program booklet that includes abstracts of the papers is
available from the Institute for Baha'i Studies for \$3.00 (send
the request to the Institute at the Baha'i National Center,
Wilmette, IL 60091; the check should be made out to the "Baha'i
Services Fund"). The papers are being considered for publication
in future issues of *World Order* magazine.

=END=

From: "K. Paul Johnson"
Subject: Re: Compassion vs. Purity
To: "Stephen R. Friberg"
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 9:19:55 EST
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

According to Stephen R. Friberg:
>
> Dear K. Paul:
>
> Come on!
Where?
You're just trying to be provocative, aren't you?
> Are you *really* after a serious dialogue?

This presents an either/or:
a. motivation is to be provocative
b. motivation is to start a serious dialogue

to which I can only respond with
c. none of the above

because the motivation had nothing to do with intended impact
on readers and everything to do with expressing an immediate,
enthusiastic "aha!" reaction to a book that has really stirred
me.

I got off theos-l so as not to get embroiled in either provocations or
serious dialogues with Theosophists while trying to focus on writing about
Cayce.  Left Talisman for related reasons, plus the lack of
digest option and high volume.  Got back on because was told in
email about discussions that would interest me.  Maybe that was
a mistake.

But try to picture where I'm at right now.  Have just joined an
ARE Study Group, for the third time in 20 years, and feel right
at home and totally engaged.  Find in ARE (the Association for
Research and Enlightenment) a spiritual organization that has
no emphasis on imposing rules, explicit as in Baha'i or
implicit as in Theosophy.  That has no posturing of "we're so
much holier (Baha'i) or wiser (Theosophy) than the rest of
the world."  That has no administration abusing power and
causing hard feelings around the world.  That is not obsessed
with drawing lines of what is and is not acceptable thought.
While making this connection, I am writing a book
about Edgar Cayce, who I frankly find more fascinating and
appealing than either Baha'u'llah or Blavatsky, my two previous
main spiritual mentors.  Have no Cayce list or newsgroup to
vent my enthusiasm with/to.  The form the "aha!" experiences
take is very often, "Aha! Here's a level of meaning that I
never found in Baha'i or Theosophy" or "Here's a way in which
Cayce is a more reliable spiritual guide" etc.

Think of my posts as bulletins from the front rather than
attempts to either provoke or engage serious discussions, and
you'll have a better sense of what is happening here.

Peace.

=END=

From: "Hollinger, Richard"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Fri, 9 Feb 1996 10:18:45 EDT
Subject:       Preface to Diary

Some time ago, someone asked that I post the preface to the Diary of
sent this introduction, written by my wife, Sandra Hutchison, with
some research assistance from me, to Talisman under separate cover.

Richard

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 07:35:13 -0800 (PST)
From: Steven Coles
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Tattooless in Seattle

Not my expertise, but:

I'm not sure what the point is.  Except on eyelids & noses, Seattle
tattoos don't show until late May in warm years.  Most tattoo parlors in
the Seattle area are in military-dominated areas (Tacoma) or
alcohol-dominated areas.  One exception comes to mind.  The Lake City
neighborhood has a parlor next door to a Persian grocery rumored to have
Sufi leanings and just across the street from a very good Indian
restaurant.  Even this "better"  neighborhood is walking distance from 2
places where young ladies derive income by revealing their tattoos (on
bluish skin with mossy patches).  Seattle may not be the optimum place to
get a tattoo.  Dr. Burl, I must insist that you sample Seattle's tattoo
services yourself before recommending a place for young ladies.  Even
after witnessing Tapestry's performance, I can't imagine a tattoo show at
a fireside. Really, (water resistant) Face painting makes more sense in
Seattle.  (Oh heck.  Maybe my Alzheimer's is just causing attacks of age
discrimination, sexism, & prudishness.)

Steven S. Coles
Seattle, Washington State, U.S.A.

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 07:47:28 -0800
To: MARK REDDY <74542.2114@compuserve.com>,
Lance Hurt <76102.663@compuserve.com>,
"Faye L. Gooden" <74463.1052@compuserve.com>,
Habib Riazati <76101.3361@compuserve.com>,
Lucinda Chavez <75023.3214@compuserve.com>,
Carol Brooks , talisman@indiana.edu
From: nightbrd@humboldt1.com (Doug Myers)
Subject: Ken Myers

O MY FRIENDS!
Have ye forgotten that true and radiant morn, when in those
hallowed and blessed surroundings ye were all gathered in My presence
beneath the shade of the tree of life, which is planted in the all-glorious
paradise?  Awe-struck ye listened as I gave utterance to these three most
holy words:  O friends!  Prefer not your will to Mine, never desire that
which I have not desired for you, and approach Me not with lifeless hearts,
defiled with worldly desires and cravings.  Would ye but sanctify your
souls, ye would at this present hour recall that place and those
surroundings, and the truth of My utterance should be made evident unto all
of you.
(Baha'u'llah, Persian Hidden Words, # 19)

Dear Friends,

Kenneth Myers passed beyond the veil of this existence during the night.  He
went easily in his sleep.  He is now walking with his Lord and his beautiful
bride of 53 years, Rhoderoi.

Nothing survives but the way we live our lives.  He led his life in an
exemplery fashion.  He was the consimate father, husband, and Baha'i ---
what more can one say?

Doug Myers
nightbrd@humboldt.com
"Nothing survives but the way we live our lives."    JB

=END=

From: "Mark A. Foster"
Subject: A Recent Posting
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 10:07:15 -0600 (CST)

To: talisman@indiana.edu

Talismanians -

Without mentioning any names, there was a posting made to the list a
couple of days ago on Talisman which gave the appearance that there is
some sort of Talisman inner circle who are involved in some sort of a
conspiracy to implement a special agenda on the Baha'i community.

portion of the letter (obviously intended for Majnun, the list which
gave birth to Talisman, which I had no idea still existed in any form).
However, because of John's and Linda's subsequent letters, I decided
against it. Instead, I just decided to ask a couple of questions: What
is all of this about? Is Talisman a "missionary outreach" of Majnun?

To the Light,

Mark (Foster)

___
* UniQWK #2141* The manifested Unity of God emanates in His creation's diversity

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 08:01 PST
To: "K. Paul Johnson"
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Compassion vs. Purity
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>>Think of my posts as bulletins from the front rather than
>attempts to either provoke or engage serious discussions, and
>you'll have a better sense of what is happening here.
>
> Thanks for the tip -- a little disclosure goes a long way towards
fostering understanding.
>Burl
>

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

From: "Hollinger, Richard"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Fri, 9 Feb 1996 10:15:56 EDT
Subject:       Preface to Diary of Agnes Parsons

PREFACE

In 1912, `Abdu'l-Baha `Abbas (1844-1921), recently liberated
by the Young Turk's Revolution from his forty-year long
confinement in the prison city of Akka, set sail for America.
He came, in the twilight of his years and on the eve of world
war, to promulgate universal peace, a central teaching of the new
religion for whose cause he had been imprisoned and at whose head
he stood: the Baha'i Faith. During his sojourn in the United
States, poets and leaders of thought sought his counsel in
private interviews, and seekers of all races and classes attended
his public talks. Journalists, struck by his charismatic
personality and by the modernity of his teachings, described him
as a "Prophet from the East" and an "Apostle of Peace."
For the small community of his American disciples, however,
`Abdu'l-Baha's  visit had a significance far beyond that ascribed
to it by an eager public and in the newspaper reports of the day.
A few American Baha'is had been able to make the arduous and
costly journey to the Holy Land to attain his presence, but for
most, `Abdu'l-Baha's visit to their country offered a first and
probably an only opportunity to meet the leader of their faith,
the one appointed by its founder, Baha'u'llah, to be the
interpreter of his teachings after his passing. `Abdu'l-Baha's
presence amongst them fired the imaginations of the Baha'is about
the teachings they had embraced as he, "the Perfect Exemplar"
of those teachings, demonstrated first-hand their application to
daily life.
But the fealty of the American Baha'is to `Abdu'l-Baha was
inspired by more than a recognition of his station. To them, he
was "the Master" -- a loving teacher who had nurtured them from
afar through scores of letters and a Christ-like figure about
whom they had heard numerous tales from returning pilgrims to the
Holy Land. In fact, many of the early American believers believed
that he, not Baha'u'llah, represented the return of Jesus as
prophesied in the New Testament, and it took numerous
reiterations to disabuse them of this notion: his only station,
he told them, was the station of servitude and the name he wished
to be called by was `Abdu'l-Baha -- the "Servant of Baha."
Today `Abdu'l-Baha's travels in the United States hold an
unrivalled place in the spiritual heritage of the American Baha'i
community. This legacy is honored by the reverence paid to the
places associated with his travels, some of which have become
sites of regional pilgrimage, and by the ardent study of the
transcripts of hundreds of talks he delivered during his sojourn
in America. Another way in which this legacy is celebrated is by
the frequent repetition of anecdotes about `Abdu'l-Baha's
encounters with the diverse array of people he taught and
counselled in the course of his journey. In fact, so important a
place do such stories hold in the collective imagination of the
American Baha'i community that they have taken on a life of their
the Master.
In such tales we often encounter a larger-than-life `Abdu'l-
Baha, a figure who belongs more to legend than to history. Yet
clearly, it is imperative to situate the events of `Abdu'l-Baha's
visit to America within their historical context, if we are to
understand their true significance. For example, `Abdu'l-Baha's
warnings about the outbreak of a world-shaking conflagration,
reiterated throughout his Western journeys, take shape as an
ominous foreshadowing when compared to then current views of the
Balkans' conflict, and his message of peace, equality, and
justice  acquires further cogency when set against the important
political events and social trends of the day, such as the U.S.
presidential campaign of 1912 and the movements for peace,
women's suffrage, and racial harmony.
Nor does `Abdu'l-Baha's journey of peace appear in its truly
epic proportions without reference to the turbulent history of
the religious movement in which he was a central figure. Not
unless we know the something of saga of religious intolerance
that consigned `Abdu'l-Baha to exile and lifelong imprisonment,
can we fully appreciate, in all its dramatic power, the mise-en-
scene created by the placing of an aged eastern sage, a man who
had never in his life faced a public audience, before a
congregation of two thousand of the Jewish faithful at a
synagogue in San Francisco for the purpose of asserting the truth
of the prophetic missions of both Jesus and Muhammad.
`Abdu'l-Baha's visit to America acquires another kind of
frame and a further richness when set against the personal
experiences of the people he encountered--people whose lives
intersected, however briefly, with his. Even the most devoted
Baha'is, including those who travelled with `Abdu'l-Baha, were
with him only for short periods of time. The Master's numerous
social engagements and obligations made extended contact with him
almost impossible. Moreover, the daily responsibilities of life
inevitably pulled the Baha'is out of `Abdu'l-Baha's orbit and
back into their own individual worlds of experience. However, the
records kept of such daily experience provide for us today a
illuminating context for the study of the impact of `Abdu'l-
Baha's historic visit on American Baha'is and their
contemporaries.
Like pilgrims' notes, diaries and memoirs of the Master's
travels in the America possess the limitations common to all
historical accounts. Consequently, they are not infallible
records of `Abdu'l-Baha's words or even objective descriptions of
what happened. Neither are they comprehensive in their
documentation of `Abdu'l-Baha's activities. Still, they are
important historical documents which provide a useful framework
for understanding some of the talks recorded in The Promulgation
of Universal Peace and other publications. Moreover, they provide
information about certain daily aspects of`Abdu'l-Baha's journeys
about which we would otherwise know little.
Such accounts also have significance as inspirational
literature. Much like the gospels of the New Testament, which
recount the events of the ministry of Jesus, accounts of `Abdu'l-
Baha's activities during his sojourn in America tell us what his
words and actions meant to those who witnessed them. Although
such accounts may well contain historical inaccuracies, they form
an intriguing body of sacred stories, stories in which those who
had the privilege of coming into the Master's presence render
their experiences  of an event which, according to Shoghi
Effendi, the Guardian of the Baha'i Faith, marked the
"culmination" of and was "the greatest exploit" associated with
`Abdu'l-Baha's ministry -- his journey to the West.
The publication providing the most thorough documentation of
`Abdu'l-Baha's tours of Europe and North America is Kitab-i
Badayi`u'l-Athar written by Mahmud-i Zarqani, a member of the
Master's entourage. Usually referred to in English as "Mahmud's
Diary," this day-by-day account of the Master's travels appears
to have been written after the author had returned to the Near
East and is probably not, therefore, a diary in the true sense of
the term. And although collectively they constitute an
important body of source material against which to gauge the
accuracy of Zarqani's  account, other diaries documenting
`Abdu'l-Baha's American journeys, such as those by Ella Cooper,
Shahnaz Waite, Juliet Thompson, Mariam Haney, and Juanita Storch,
generally coverthis day-by-day account of the Master's travels appears
to have been written after the author had returned to the Near
East and is probably not, therefore, a diary in the true sense of
the term. And although collectively they constitute an
important body of source material against which to gauge the
accuracy of Zarqani's  account, other diaries documenting
`Abdu'l-Baha's American journeys, such as those by Ella Cooper,
Shahnaz Waite, Juliet Thompson, Mariam Haney, and Juanita Storch,
generally coverly coverits publication. The result is a quasi-
literary work in which experience is distilled and shaped, a work
perhaps more revealing of the sensibility of its author, an
artist living in the bohemian milieu of early twentieth-century
Greenwich Village, than it is informative of the specific details
of the Master's activities in America.
By contrast, Mrs. Parsons' diary gives the reader a lucid
and relatively unembellished account of `Abdu'l-Baha's daily
activities during the more than five weeks she spent with him in
Washington, D.C., and in Dublin, New Hampshire. Agnes Parsons had
made a pilgrimage to `Akka in 1910, at which time she had
obtained a promise from `Abdu'l-Baha that he would stay in her
home, if he came to America. `Abdu'l-Baha made three visits to
Washington, D.C.: from April 20 to 28, from May 8 to 11, and from
November 6 to 11. During the first visit he kept his promise by
staying at Mrs. Parsons' home, and during the subsequent visits
he held meetings there regularly. `Abdu'l-Baha also visited Agnes
Parsons' summer home, Day Spring, in Dublin, New Hampshire from
July 25 to August 15.
Because of the length of time Mrs. Parsons spent
with`Abdu'l-Baha, her diary is one of the most important American
sources relating to his visit. It is more extensive than any of
the unpublished accounts of `Abdu'l-Baha's travels in the United
States, and, with the exception of the journal of Juanita Storch,
it is closer to a true diary than anything in print. However, it
should be noted that this publication is based on a handwritten
copy of the original diary made by Leona Barnitz, who served as a
secretary to Mrs. Parsons in the late 1910's and 1920's; that
this copy was lightly edited for style and annotated with margin
notes, probably by Mrs. Parsons herself; and that in a least
one place in the diary, part of the original account seems to
have been deliberately omitted when it was copied. Moreover,
aware that she was recording important historical events, Mrs.
Parsons may have made a conscious effort to speak in a public
voice in her diary in anticipation that someday others would read
her account.
Agnes Parsons (1861-1934) was a wealthy Washington socialite
with a family to whom she was devoted and a wide circle of
prominent friends, a list2p of whose names would have read as a
social register of the capital at the time. Her outlook and
concerns were firmly rooted in the conservatism and elitism of
the capital city's upper classes. Her social location, like that
of Juliet Thompson, had an impact both on `Abdu'l-Baha's visit
and on the record that was kept of it. In Dublin and in
Washington, D.C., Agnes Parsons introduced `Abdu'l-Baha to
politicians, artists, writers, professors, and other leaders of
thought. Their encounters with the Master are documented here, as
are his meetings with Baha'is in these places.
If it is important to know that `Abdu'l-Baha met with
influential thinkers, it is equally important to recognize that
such encounters did not compose the totality of his visit.
`Abdu'l-Baha's meetings with persons of social prominence
dominate the pages of this diary because these were what Mrs.
Parsons witnessed and what she felt were most significant. But
`Abdu'l-Baha also spoke with the servants in the households of
the prominent figures he visited and held meetings with the poor
and the working-classes during his American travels. The reader,
therefore, should be aware of the limitations of this account and
should not view it as a complete record of `Abdu'l-Baha's visits
to Washington, D.C. or to Dublin, New Hampshire. Rather, the
diary of Agnes Parsons should be seen as an important source
which must be supplemented by other accounts of the Master's
visits to these places if a complete and accurate picture is to
be formed.
At the time Mrs. Parsons wrote her diary, Washington, D.C.
was home to the most diverse Baha'i community in North America:
it had within its fold the largest group of African-Americans,
and virtually all social classes, from the working poor to the
social elite, were represented in it. As part of the American
south, Washington, D.C. was also a city in which racial
segregation was a fact of life, and it was on the issue of racial
equality that `Abdu'l-Baha was most uncompromising during his
visit to America. On one occasion, which is mentioned briefly in
this diary,`Abdu'l-Baha shocked some of the white socialites
present by insisting that Louis Gregory, an African-American
Baha'i and lawyer, be seated next to him at a society
luncheon. In such a milieu, the Baha'is found it challenging
to comply with `Abdu'l-Baha's instruction that they should hold
racially-integrated meetings. Even locating a public site for a
community dinner honoring`Abdu'l-Baha proved difficult, since no
hotels in the city would allow an integrated meeting.
Beneath the concern of Washington's upper classes to uphold
long-standing social conventions regarding racial segregation
were deep-rooted prejudices not easily overcome. Even Mrs.
Parsons' husband once commented to `Abdu'l-Baha that he wished
all the blacks would return to Africa, to which the Master wryly
replied that such an exodus would have to begin with Wilber, the
trusted butler of the Parsons household. While Mrs. Parsons
herself would not have harbored such sentiments, having accepted
the Baha'i teaching on the oneness of humanity, her social
position would have made it extremely difficult for her to accept
African-Americans as persons with whom she could have social
relations as equals, and it may also have made her reluctant to
advocate racial integration, even within the Baha'i community.

On this subject, the silences of this diary are perhaps
more telling than what is recorded. For example, there is
scarcely a mention of any of `Abdu'l-Baha's talks at the homes of
Andrew Dyer and Joseph Hannen, both of which were sites of
racially integrated meetings for the Washington, D.C. Baha'i
community, or at African-American venues, such as the
Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church, presumably
because Mrs. Parsons did not attend most of these events. Such
activities were not part of the social world in which she lived.
It is remarkable, then, that `Abdu'l-Baha subsequently chose
Agnes Parsons to spearhead the Racial Amity campaign initiated by
the Baha'i community and as remarkable that she transcended her
social milieu in order to carry out this mandate.
Dublin, New Hampshire is the other location in which the
events of Mrs. Parsons' diary take place. Originally an
agricultural village near Monandock, the mountain romanticized by
its mention in the writings of Emerson and Thoreau, by the late
1870's Dublin had become a popular rustic resort for Bostonians
who boarded during the summer months with local farmers. By the
turn-of-the-century, Dublin had become well established as a
summer resort, and an artist's colony had begun to emerge there
as painters, writers, academicians, and patrons of the arts
acquired homes in and around the village.
Attracted to the quiet atmosphere and natural splendor of
the region, the well-known naturalist painters George DeForest
Brush (1849-1921) and Abbot Handerson Thayer (1855-1921) had
relocated to Dublin in 1899 and in 1901 respectively, the latter
drawing to the town art students who came to work under his
tutelage. Those who owned or rented summer homes in Dublin
included Isabella Steward Gardner (1840-1924), a well-known
patron of the arts from Boston; Joseph Linden Smith, a sculptor
who taught at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts School; and Raphael
Pumpelly, a geology professor at Harvard and a famous world-
traveller, who once entertained `Abdu'l-Baha in his Dublin
Dublin, a list of whose names would read, as one historian has
observed, like "a Who's Who of turn-of-the-century America."
By the time `Abdu'l-Baha visited Dublin in 1912, therefore,
the town had evolved into an artists' colony and fashionable
summer resort. Dublin was a place where the worlds of Agnes
Parsons and Juliet Thompson intersected. Here the artist could
come into contact with high society and vice-versa as bohemian
and socialite alike sought refreshment and renewal amidst the
beauty of the New England countryside. It was in Dublin that
`Abdu'l-Baha met with some of the most important intellectual and
cultural figures of the day, and the contacts he made there
undoubtedly provided entrees into social networks that were drawn
upon in arranging the subsequent segments of his journey.

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Thu,  8 Feb 96 23:11:08 PST
Subject: RE: Dialogue, argument and quarrels
To: TALISMAN@indiana.edu, coleman@olimp.irb.hr

Check your chewing gum and razors at the door and argue away. I'll be
watching from my bunker.
Argue away.

On Fri, 09 Feb 1996 02:02:47 MET-DST  coleman@olimp.irb.hr wrote:

>                 With Loving Baha'i Greetings
>        Dr. Jack Coleman, Croatia

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/08/96
Time: 23:11:08

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 08:32:49 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Fwd: Re: Dire warning for Dr. Burl
To: talisman@indiana.edu

>What's to compile?  Bail bondsmen are listed on pages 281 through 285
of
>the Seattle yellow pages.
>
>Swell! Now, you might pick a nice tatoo parlour for SFotos -- she is
honestly getting a tatoo after Bosch. In fact, perhaps she will be
inspired
to have something mystical tatood on her spiritual self -- such as a
likeness of Sherman.

BB

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************
Steven Coles unaware of the extent of the service offered at Bosch trys
to compare the famous rainy city with ourselves at Bosch. We have
Native American Art, the first Baha'i Bookshop/Cafe on the planet,
better espresso, caffe lattes etc than you can get from that other
coffee place "Barbats' or something which you see everywhere.Naturally
Burl we are offering tattoing just for the Mystic types at the
conference. Bobo as well as Sherman tattos are to be made available.
Sandy is looking for a Japan style tatto I understand.
John Walbridge it is rumored is thinking of requesting 'I am
persecuted by Linda let me sleep in my bed'. Talismanians rally to
John's aid everybody send Linda an E'Mail begging her to allow john
back in his bed. It is no place for our List owner sleeping under the
stairs just because he forgot to record that silly TV program that was
months ago. DR. Burl what do you think is right that John has to sleep
under the stairs I know you have experience in these matters unlike
myself.Your best Friend DR. Uncle Derek

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Fri, 9 Feb 1996 13:11:06 EST
Subject:       dietary + experiences

Dearest talismanians,

I wanted to share the results of my dietary experiments in the last
year. Just before the Fast last year, I began to avoid salt, meat,
sugar, caffeine and animal fats like they were poison. I ate food as
much as possible in its freshest and original state. UNPROCESSED! I
suffer from chronic back problems, bursitis of right shoulder,
carpal tunnel syndrome and chronic tendonitis, digestive track
disorder, and chronic pain of the right arm as an

occupational problem. After three weeks on this regiment, I felt like
a new person. I felt the difference in my voice, (I love singing) my
muscles, my mind it was awesome. No pain anywhere in my body.

While on this diet I read three books two of which I lend to someone
and have no idea where they are now. Anyway, the names were "Food
Mind and Mood" "Back to Eden" "Seven Golden Rules Plus one".
I also avoided commercial TV and news, and watched only Mind Extension
University Programs and PBS programs. I also used a trampoline to do
the exercises in Samuel West's book called "lymphesizing".
Including in this self created program was cleansing of the digestive
track with methods used from Jethro Kloss's Back to Eden.
At the time even if I wanted to I could not entertain a single
negative thought. It was like a miracle. Just as Jethro said.
I drank a 16 oz. glass of water with a few drops of fresh lime juice
right after I woke up every morning. I also took some vitamin and
protein supplements along with algea. I drank freshly squeezed
vegetable and fruit juices. Nothing in the bottle or cans.
I also ate alot of tofu and other soybean products.
I maintained this regiment until I came back from home in October.
Then, being separated from my folks and the possibility of not seing
them ever again set in and I began to feel a deep depression. I did
not care what I ate, what I watched. I just simply did not care about
anything, anymore. The results are that now I feel terrible again, in
body, mind and spirit. I believe strongly that we are being poisoned
with the conventional diet slowly and surely. We are encouraged to
drink caffeine in order to function in the work-place, unnaturally,
of course to support someone's profit addiction too.

It breaks my heart to see young people eating so unhealthy and
smoking cigarettes and drinking soda and killing themselves slowly.
They lost their natural taste for healthy food and have been addicted
through clever consumer psychology tricks to unhealthy eating habits.

I am going back to my smart eating program again. Fast is
approaching and this is a great time for it. I'll let you know of the
results.

lovingly,
quanta

=END=

From: Member1700@aol.com
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 13:16:10 -0500
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Dialogue, argument and quarrels

Dear Jack:
I cannot imagine anyone on Talisman having anything against argument.
That is virtually all we do.  If anyone didn't like that, they wouldn't be
here.
I have not seen all of the criticisms that you received, but the ones that
I have seen did not tell you that you were not being nice.  Rather, they
attacked your arguments as arrogant and unfounded.  That is quite different.

In my view, as an example, Baha'is carry no brief whatsoever to tell
Buddhists what their religion teaches or should teach.  Nor does it make any
sense--morally or academically--to recast historical Buddhism in Baha'i
categories.  I find such an attempt as unacceptable as it would be for
Buddhists to tell Baha'is what we believe (or should believe) on similar
grounds.
But, of course, that is just my view.  You can take it for what it's
worth.  If you feel that your dialogues with Bruce are constructive--well, go
ahead.  Just know that there are some Baha'is who disagree with you as
strongly as he does.

Tony

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 12:52:27 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Continuing Dialogue with Bruce B.

>Date: Mon, 05 Feb 1996 21:52:53
>To: coleman@olimp.irb.hr
>From: Bruce Burrill
>Subject: Re: Continuing Dialogue with Bruce B.
>
>Jack Coleman,
>
>questions, and I hope you will attempt to answer each. Onnce these are
>
>1] > "In the Sutta Pitaka, in Chapter XX" <  Do you know what
>"Chapter XX" of the Sutta Pitaka is?
>
>2] > '"All created things perish...All created are grief and pain".' <
>Do you know what the Sanskrit/Pali word is for "created?" Do you
>know if "created" is an appropriate translation of whatever word it
>might be?
>
>3] > 'In the Udana, v. 81, Buddha says: "O monks,, an unborn,
>unoriginated, uncreated, unformed. Were there not, O monks, this
>unborn, unoriginated, uncreated, unformed, there would be no escape
>from the world of the born, originated, created, formed..."' <  Do
>know the context of this passage? And can you discuss each of the "un"
>words as they appear elsewhere within the Pali texts and tell us what
>they refer to?
>
>4] > "Yet people remember the Messengers but forget the messages.
>The symptoms affecting Buddhism are to be found in all the other
>ancient Faiths." <  I gave you a lengthy discussion of how the message
>of the Buddha was very carefully preserved, but you have only implied
>with no justification that somehow the Buddha's message was lost. How
>do you know that the Buddha's message was lost; how do you know that
>the monks and nuns have not kept the spirit and letter of the Buddha
>alive?
>
>5] > "He states in the Digha-nikaya, I. 235. (Tevijja Sutta)" <  Have
>you actually read the full text of the Tevijja Sutta?
>
>6] > 'But Buddha is not reserved about claiming to know the way to
>Brahma. He states: "the Tathagata (Buddha) knows the straight path that
>leads to a union with Brahma. He knows it as one who has entered the
>world of Brahma and has been born in it."' <  There a number of
>discourses in the Pali texts that deal with this subject, have you read
>them? Do you know by what adjective the Buddha characterizes the goal
>of union with Brahma?
>
>7] > "This eternal Reality, whether we call it the Unmanifest
>Brahma, or the Uncreated, or the Supreme, or the Absolute, the
>Essence or God, reveals Itself to Buddhas Who are perfect mirrors
>reflecting Its truth (Dharma)." <  Do you know what the Buddha
>claimed as being the source of his enlightenment?
>
>8] > 'In the Majjhima-nikaya, 1. 137-140 and other passages, Buddha
>unequivically refutes any denial of the Essence: "And as all things
>originate from one Essence' <  Yes or no, have you read the
>Majjhimanikaya I 137-140?
>
>9] > '"And as all things originate from one Essence, so they are
>developing according to one law, and they are destined to one aim,
>which is Nirvana."' <  Is this an actual Buddhist texts?
>
>10] > "You wouldn't believe that Baha'u'llah is Omniscient as is
>Buddha." <  What did the Buddha say about claims of omniscience
>
>11] > '"This, Vasettha, is a synonym for the Tathagata: Dhamma-body
>and again Brahma-body, and again Dhamma-become and again Brahma-
>become."' <  Do you know that the words tathagata and buddha are
>also used by the Buddha to refer to the enlightened follower?
>
>12] > "Buddha is also referred to in the texts as the Self-Existent,
>the Blessed One, the Universal Mind." <  And you cite this text, and
>give a careful exegetical discussion of its techincal terms?
>
>Before we can talk any further here or elsewhere, I would really like
>you to honestly answer each of these questions
>
>Bruce B
>

=END=

From: alma@indirect.com
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 12:02:29 -0700
To: "Mark A. Foster" , talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: A Recent Posting

Dear Mark,

I appreciate your shorter signature -- it saves paper for those who print
Talisman email.

But, sigh, I wonder why you feel it is necessary to pursue any of this on
Talisman.  I applaud your decision not to ask detailed questions.  But when
that missent message it seems to me it would be in the Baha'i spirit to do
so, to not add to the tests he is having now because of this.

You have recently announced two email lists of your own and have stated that
you don't consider them as replacements for Talisman (I don't have that
email any more so this is from memory) and I took you at your word.  And I
wish you success with those lists though at the moment I do not have the
time to devote to subscribing to either of them.  But I note that both these
lists have restrictions on discussion which you feel appropriate,
restrictions which are not on Talisman. And imperfect, suspicious soul that
I am, I wonder if your intent in asking the questions you do is to discredit
Talisman -- perhaps to the point that such an open list is no longer allowed
to be available to us.  If that is  the case, I wonder that you consider the
Baha'i Faith so fragile that it cannot allow people to openly discuss
matters.  And if it is that fragile, I wonder why I -- or you -- would want
to be a part of it.

A not very peaceful,
Alma

At 10:07 AM 2/9/96 -0600, Mark A. Foster wrote:
>To: talisman@indiana.edu
>
>Talismanians -
>
>    Without mentioning any names, there was a posting made to the list a
>couple of days ago on Talisman which gave the appearance

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 12:54:25 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels

>Date: Fri, 09 Feb 1996 00:33:01
>To: The Bridge Across Consciousness
>From: Bruce Burrill
>Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
>
>Jack Coleman,
>
>I think you need to post your reply to me on Talisman. I would be very
>interested in hearing other Baha'i responses to what you've written, none
>of which surprises me in the least.
>
>books. Now, you know my opinion of these books because I sent you
>a private message about them. Let me repeat some of what I have said
>
>_____________________
>
>The two books you mentioned by Jamshed Fozdar, I am quite with
>a small commercial firm, and the second, BUDDHA MAITRYA
>AMITABHA HAS APPEARED, by the Baha'i Publishing Trust of
>India. I have read both very carefully, tracking down every reference he
>used to Buddhist texts, both in the Pali (which I read) and Sanskrit
>(which I can muddled with), and to the English sources which Fozdar
>used. What I found was not simply a matter somebody presenting a
>position with which I disagreed. I found that his source material
>consisted of essentially only five books, one from which he quotes
>extensively is a highly out of date "anthology" written in 1894. Given
>what is now available in English translation (and what was available
>during his penning of these books), his scholarship is less than barely
>adequate. Fozdar, who arrogantly dismisses modern scholars as well as
>Buddhists themselves as not having the correct knowledge of Buddhism
>and the Buddha, sets out to tell us all what the Buddha really taught, and
>he does this -- and I can certainly demonstrate this in detail -- by
>plagiarism, misrepresentation, distortion, and in both books passing off
>as Buddhist scriptures stuff in over 20 instances that, though it serves his
>purposes, is clearly not genuine Buddhist texts but was written in 1894
>by Paul Carus. Carus, the book's (the Gospel of the Buddha) author,
>carefully lists the source of each passage. There are a number of
>passages identified as "EA," "explanatory addition" -- that is, bridge
>material written by Carus. Fozdar takes this clearly marked EA material
>and passes it off as actual Buddhist texts with citation from the Buddhist
>canon. It also worth noting that Carus imposes on Buddhism in this
>work his own monistic philosophy, and it is in this "EA" material that
>this most evident.
> _________________________
>
>Let us take a further look at Fozdar "scholarship." You quote:
>
>"And as all things originate from one Essence, so they are developing
>according to one law, and they are destined to one aim, which is
>Nirvana."
>
>And you follow Fozdar in his BMA as saying this is from the "Sanskrit
>Dhammapada." Fozdar in his GOD OF BUDDHA on page 131 simply
>cites the source as "SDP V." This quote comes from Paul Carus'
>GOSPEL OF THE BUDDHA, and in his "Table of Reference" he gives
>the source as "SDP, v." Unfortunately, however, SDP is not in Carus'
>"list of abbreviations." Looking in the various Sanskrit "Dhammapadas"
>there is nothing in form or content that can be found that resemble this
>quote. Looking elsewhere in Carus' "Table of Reference," we find a
>number of sources listed in this manner: "SDP, vii[SB, xxi, p. 172]."
>The bracketed material is part of the quote. "SB" is listed by Carus as
>the SACRED BOOKS OF THE EAST, and volume xxi is H. Kern's
>_P_undarika, so SDP, and page 172 puts us in chapter seven, so SDP,
>vii.
>
>Now, following this when we look in the fifth chapter of Kern's
>translation of the _Saddharmapundarika_, SDP, v, in the Sacred Books
>of the East we do find on page 121 "one essence":
>
>"I am he, Kasyapam who, knowing the law [dharma] which is of but
>one essence, viz. the essence of deliverance, (the law) ever peaceful,
>ending in Nirvana, (the law) of eternal rest...."
>
>A few words are the only commonality the Carus passage has with the
>_Saddharmapundarika_, and this is an excellent example of Carus
>altering the meaning of the texts he was using to put forth his own
>vision of things. What meaning Fozdar draws from the Carus passage
>may reflect what Carus had in mind, but it has nothing to do with what
>the text actually says. Fozdar's citation of "Sanskrit Dhammapada" for
>SDP is a fabrication.
>
>Nor is there anything remotely resembling Carus' "originating from one
>essence" in the Majjhimanikaya I 137-140.
>
>So the bottom line here is that when I asked if the "one essence" passage
>was a legitimate Buddhist text, it is not, but you didn't know that. You
>simply and obviously do not know Buddhism well enough to make any
>sort of meaningful comments, and you are unwittingly passing off as
>being Buddhist texts, thanks to Fozdar, stuff that is not.
>
>In reading through your msg, which I'll be happy to go through in
>detail, it is obvious that you are doing no more than parroting Fozdar.
>You have not read the texts in question expect in Fozdar's wretched
>books, which are full of distortions.
>
>> "it was not only the discipline or dharma that led Him to
>enlightenment (Buddhahood) but an exaltation from the Absolute" <
>
>Would you care to cite your source for this? Please do, because I would
>love to show just how totally incompetent Fozdar "scholarship" is, and
>his use of the passage from the Diamond Sutra is an excellent example.
>
>Also, maybe we should discuss Fozdar's claim that the Buddha
>prophesied that a "Twin Miracle" will arise to teach the new dharma.
>Should we take a look at how Fozdar completely ignores the
>grammatical structure of the sentence involved to comes to this brilliant
>conclusion?
>
>I'll pick up the rest of your msg over the next couple of days.
>
>Bruce B
>

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 13:04:35 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: A Recent Posting
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Mark Foster" , "Talisman"

>    Without mentioning any names, there was a posting made to the list a
>couple of days ago on Talisman which gave the appearance that there is
>some sort of Talisman inner circle who are involved in some sort of a
>conspiracy to implement a special agenda on the Baha'i community.
>
>portion of the letter (obviously intended for Majnun, the list which
>gave birth to Talisman, which I had no idea still existed in any form).
>However, because of John's and Linda's subsequent letters, I decided
>against it. Instead, I just decided to ask a couple of questions: What
>is all of this about? Is Talisman a "missionary outreach" of Majnun?

Dear Mark.

Who or what is Majnun?

I can only imagine that there is enormous suspicion raised by that
posting.  Descriptors such as "scoundrels" and " Leave them to dig their
own graves" which seem only applicable to the NSA appears very
unfortunate.  If the only way for Baha'is to climb out of the
"intellectual ghetto" is to show forth such sentiments I think I prefer
the ghetto.  I wasn't going to say anything on this subject--but in the
spirit of free speech I decided to do so.

I would still maintain that John has a right to his view and I see that
he has decided not to press it publicly which I feel is the right course
of action.  And I don't feel he should experience any condemnation for
expressing it--as his wife, Linda, so graciously expressed--the family
was under a great deal of pressure--due to a diabetic child.  As a Father
of three, myself,  I can certainly sympathize and only wish a struggling
family all my Baha'i love and concern and hope for their future.  And to
Linda, whom, I've been admiring from afar the time is drawing near for
our meeting.  see you at Bosch.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 12:55:25 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels

>Date: Fri, 09 Feb 1996 12:49:52
>To: The Bridge Across Consciousness
>From: Bruce Burrill
>Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
>
>
>Jack Coleman,
>
>I ask you: 'Do you know what "Chapter XX" of the Sutta
>Pitaka is?'
>
>And you reply: > 'In one of our books, Chapter XX is called "The
>Way". It starts out with: "The best of paths is the Eightfold;...".' <
>
>Which is to say you haven't the foggiest idea of what you are talking
>about. The Sutta Pitaka is _not_ divided into chapters. And this has to
>do with how well you really understand Buddhism. It certainly does
>appear that you have engaged in an independent investigation of the truth
>of what Buddhism is; rather, you are unquestionably taking Fozdar with
>all his serious mistake as being the answer. Fozdar is not.
>
>I ask you: 'Do you know what the Sanskrit/Pali word is for
>"created?" Do you know if "created" is an appropriate translation
>of whatever word it might be?'
>
>And you reply: > 'The Max Muller translation is used. In another
>reference to created things or creatures, in the Sutta-Nipata there is a
>hymn to love in which the word "creatures" is used many times: "May
>creatures all abound in weal and peace; may all be blessed with
>peace always; all creatures weak and strong, all creatures great
>and small; creatures unseen and seen, etc." In our book,
>"creatures" are "created things". What does yours say?' <
>
>In other words, you are unable to answer my questions. You are making
>a heavy duty assumption that because the words "created" and
>"creatures" are used in a very old translation that you can then assume
>that a "creator" is justifiably implied. One would think that if you are
>going to draw such an important conclusion, you would have a little
>more substantial evidence to support your position, such as what the Pali
>words are that are translated as "created" and "creature,"and that they
>are aptly so translated and showing that they do, in fact, imply a creator.
>Relying on out of date and inadequate translations of single words is
>hardly a basis for determining that a "creator" in implied by these
>translations.
>
>The bottom line here is that you are unable to give an answer to my
>question as to what word (_kata_, to make) is translated as "created,"
>because you obviously do not know, and you cannot argue that created
>is an appropriate translation. Your conclusions drawn upon this
>translation are invalid.
>
>Try "May all _beings_ abound in weal...." Creature is an inappropriate
>translation.
>
>You further go on: > 'Also, in the Udana, v. 81, the Buddha says:
>"There is, O monks, an unborn, unoriginated, uncreated, unformed.
>Were there not, O monks, this unborn, unoriginated, uncreated,
>unformed, there would be no escape from the world of the born,
>originated, created, formed..."' <
>
>I asked you if you know the context of this passage, and I asked you if
>you know how each of the "un" words is used, and again you did not
>
>The introduction to the whole of the Udana 80 passage clearly states
>that it is a discourse about nirvana, not some "Absolute." You seem
>quite unaware that "unborn (ajatam), unoriginated (abhutam), uncreated
>(akatam, better translated as unmade), unformed (asankhatam)" are used
>elsewhere in either these forms or in variations as defining words for
>nirvana. You quote this passage but really you give no discussion of it
>or its elements, but you do give us what Fozdar says, even with his
>misspelling of Siddhartha, as if this will somehow support your
>contention that it refers to an Absolute, a god. All we need do is look
>at one word to see that what is going on here.
>
>The word _asankhata_, "unformed/unconditioned," is of central
>importance, and its significance in the Buddhist texts is very easily seen.
>Sankhata means conditioned, compounded or formed--that is, it is that
>which is 'put-together." The idea of created is inappropriate for this
>word, and in a technical sense it is that which is put together by the
>conditioning of greed, aversion and delusion. In the Samyutta Nikaya III
>87 we find:
>
>"Why does one say 'conditions' [_sanhkara_: the volitional conditions
>of greed, hatred and delusion]? Because they condition the conditioned
>[_sankhata_]."
>
>The _a_ in Pali as in asankhata is a privative and functions something
>like a minus sign (-), and its translation is dependent upon its context.
>
>So to further illustrate, in the S.N. IV 251 and IV 321 we find:
>
>"That which is the destruction of greed, hatred and delusion is nibbana."
>
>In S.N. IV 359 and S.N. 362 we find:
>
>"That which is the destruction of greed, hatred and delusion is
>_asankhata_."
>
>That is to say, it is the freedom from the conditioning of those three
>unwholesome factors, and clearly nirvana and asankhata are equivalent
>terms. We can also arahatship, the state of being fully enlightened and
>is a word used both for the Buddha and his enlightened disciples,
>defined as being free from greed, hatred, and ignorance. Also, we find
>in the Itivuttaka 57:
>
>"Whoever frees himself from the passions of greed, hatred, and
>ignorance, they call him, one who is self-developed, made divine
>(_brahma-bhuta, lit: become brahma), well gone (tathagata), awake
>(buddha), one who has left fear and hatred, and one who has let go all."
>
>To further illustrate I shall quote a sutta from the Itivuttaka, 37-8, which
>contains the central section of Udana 80.
>
>.  This said by the Blessed One, the Worthy One, was heard by me
>. in this way: "Monks, there is freedom from birth, freedom from
>. becoming, freedom from making, freedom from conditioning.
>. For, monks if there were not this freedom from birth, freedom from
>. becoming, freedom from making, freedom from conditioning,
>. then escape from that which is birth, becoming, making, conditioning,
>. would not be known here. But, monks, because there is freedom from
>. birth, freedom from becoming, freedom from making, freedom from
>. conditioning, therefore the escape from that which is birth, becoming,
>. making, conditioning is known."
>. This meaning the Blessed One spoke, it is spoken here in this way:
>.    That which is born, become, arisen, made, conditioned,
>.    And thus unstable, put together of decay  and death,
>.    The seat of disease, brittle,
>.    Caused and craving food,
>.    That is not fit to find pleasure in.
>.
>.     Being freed of this, calmed beyond conjecture, stable,
>.    Freed from birth, freed from arising, freed from sorrow,
>.    Freed from passions, the elements of suffering stopped,
>.    The conditioning [of greed, hatred and delusion] appeased,
>.    This is ease [bliss].
>.
>.  This meaning spoken just so by the Blessed One was heard by me in
>.  this way.
>
>As we have seen, a careful look at what the Pali texts say does not
>Unformed/unconditioned, arahatship, brahma-bhuta, tathagata, buddha,
>nirvana are all equivalent words, defined very much in the same way.
>And it can be shown with the other "un" words that they refer to
>nirvana, to arahatship, to freedom from the conditioning of hatred, greed
>and ignorance. There is no god, no creator being talked about here.
>
>Bruce B
>

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 20:37:53 +0100
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
From: Loni.BramsonLerche@ping.be (Loni Bramson-Lerche)
Subject: Re: transliteration fonds

Dear Ahang,

It is as easy as "ABC" (and that is saying a lot as my
husband says I am a disaster around a computer, every-
thing seems to go wrong when I start working).

Go to Format.  Go to Typesetting.  Go to Overstrike.
In the overstrike box type the letter you want on top
(say "h").  Move the cursor to the small arrow in the
box.  Click the mouse and do not let go; still holding
down the mouse button, slide the cursor to subscript.
Now you can let go of the mouse.  Type in your period.
Press ok and "voila".  Please note that this only
works in certain fonts.

To make your life easier, do this as a macro.  To make
your life even easier, do it in QuickCorrect.  I have
deleted all the words supplied in QuickCorrect and
put in all the transliterated Baha'i words I need.
This way I do not have to bother bringing down the
macro menu.  I just type my personal abbreviation and
QuickCorrect types in the rest.

To put the line underneath, just press the "u" button
on the tool bar before you type the letters you want
underlined.  When you have typed in all the letters
you want underlined, then press the "u" button again.

Sincerely,

Loni Bramson-Lerche

>[This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII]
>
>
>My apologies to take bandwidth with this question, but do any of
>the esteemed members have information on transliteration fonts
>for WordPerfect (for Windows)?  I have no problem with slanted
>accent over "a", "i" and "u", but need help with (1) the dot
>under as in "h.", "H.", "S.", "Z.", etc., and (2) line under as
>in "_sh_", "_ch_", etc.
>
>If anyone is in touch with Baha'i-tech (is that the right name?)
>could you forward this note to them as well?
>
>With many thanks in advance, ahang.
>rabbana@bmoa.dnet.dupont.com
>
>
>
>

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 13:57:27 -0600 (CST)
From: "Mark A. Foster, Ph.D., Sociologist of Religion"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: A Recent Posting

Dearest Alma -

I am saddened that you feel that I have it in, so to speak, for Talisman.
I enjoy the list immensely and pray for it - as I do for the two lists I
run myself, for the Baha'i section I lead on CompuServe, for the Baha'i
chats I conduct on America Online, and for another Baha'i list which I
co-moderate. To me, that is the Baha'i way. There is no rivalry in the
Kingdom of God. We are all trying to serve at the Threshold of our
Glorious Lord to the best of our abilities.

Working for the demise of any Baha'i project would represent, IMO, an
extraordinary attachment to the kingdom of names and attributes and an
attempt at self-glorification. As we all know, in the overall scheme of
things, we are all unworthy. There is no one who merits, even in small
measure, the tremendous blessings which God has graced the world through
the Revelation of Baha'u'llah.

However, inevitably, we will differ as to how best to be of service. That
is, as I see it, the function of Baha'i consultation - an empirical
demonstration of the Baha'i metaphysic of unity in diversity in action.
That, as I mentioned in a recent post, is my understanding of the reality
of democracy. It is so each one of us may have her or his say. However,
the truth does not come from any one of us. It is the product of the love
which is manifested through the unity of diverse voices.

When I read of conspiracies and agendas, it is not so easy to dismiss it.
Saying that one should forget is not easy. Forgive, yes. No one has the
right not to forgive another. It is a simple recognition of the bounty of
God. That posting confirmed some things that I had been feeling (and that
I had heard). Therefore, it was, for me, particularly significant. It has
nothing to do with who posted what. That is not important, and I
intentionally chose not to focus on personalities or on the specific
issues or topics that were raised in that letter.

To the Light,

Mark (Foster)

=END=

Date: 9 Feb 96 10:59:57 U
From: "Dan Orey"
Subject: FWD>Response to E-mail rec.
To: talisman@indiana.edu

GatorMail-Q                   FWD>Response to E-mail rec.Feb
A friend in Canada just fowarded this to me and asked that I share it with
Talisman. It pretty much summs up my fears, that the UHJ message is now out and
being shared at higher and higher circles. As well to date there have at least
three people of the former GBF IUS have withdrawn from the Faith. To say that
my heart is breaking is less than accurate.  - Daniel

----------

from a seeker or fomer Baha'i, I was unclear,

[Quote] "Thank you for the material on the Baha'is. Many years ago I was
connected with them but then I could see that they were so caught up in
Baha'u'llah that they had lost sight of what he was about. Now from
reading the material which you have sent me I see they are even more
entrenched in the word for word archives that they have lost the sense of
the spirit which dwells in him. I separated from them because of their
stance on gays. The material you sent puts them on the same level as the
Chriatian Fundamentalists holding on to old records and words which were
appropriate for another time and are not relevant for our time. The need
to hold on to the past is a very distructive act which imprisions them
within walls of separation. Separation is the greatest and most intensive
violation of spiritual law.

"You ask what I think. I think the Baha'i group is stuck and I see no
glimmer to get unstuck. In other words, I see no movement. I see also
denial of the changing dynamic of the universe..." [End quote]

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 12:53:19 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels

>Date:         Fri, 9 Feb 1996 03:17:01 MET-DST
>Sender: The Bridge Across Consciousness
>From: "Dr. Jack Coleman"
>Subject:      Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
>To: Multiple recipients of list BRIDGE-L
>
>We are glad to se e Bruce Burrill on BRIDGE-L. We just got back from a trip
>to another country and are reading some of the responses to our postings,
>including yours, Bruce. I tried to define the proper distinctio{ between
>Dialogue, Arguments and Quarrels. Only insofar as our arguments, in the right
>sense of the word, are not quarrels, it is possible that we are not only
>engaging in constructive dialogue but maybe coming to a "critical mass" of
>understanding, perhaps. As you will notice in the following, the arguments
>in the sense of constructive critiques of "y{ur (your model) versus my
>model of reality is not hopefully distasteful to you or anyone. Secondly,
>these arguments are primarily based on the Buddha's sayings rather than what
>Baha'u'llah has said. So, if you please, I'm coming over to your "camp", your
>"territory", since you reject the arguments from Baha'i sources. I am
>publicly displaying these responses to your questions since I feel rather or
>not we continue in our constructive arguments with an audience or not is
>entirely up the responses, positive or negative, of others on BRIDGE-L.
>   By the way, this is my second debut on BRIDGE-L. qI hope we have found
>the "right" arena to continue with our dialogue, arguments but hopefully,
>no quarrels nor insults.   Here's my latest and maybe my last message, all
>depending:
>
>Introduction: The following questions and answers to questions
>Bruce Burrill posed form an interesting dialogue that should be
>shared with the friends.
>
>Bruce: Before I actually respond [to] your missive, let me ask you
>several questions, and I hope you will attempt to answer each. Once
>these are answered I can respond to your msg. Before we can talk
>any further here or elsewhere, I would really like you to honestly
>
>Jack: Wherever there is a creation, there is a Creator. You can not
>have a creation without a Creator.
>
>Bruce: Of course, but then that assumes that the universe is a
>creation.
>
>Jack: Even Buddha speaks (from modern and probably misinterpreted
>texts) of created things.
>
>Bruce: The Buddha does not speak of created things!
>
>Jack: In the Sutta Pitaka, in Chapter XX", Buddha proclaims: "All
>created things perish...All created things are grief and pain.."
>In the Dhammapada, v. 374, the Buddha states: "The man who is free
>from credulity, who knows the Uncreated, who has severed all ties,
>who ...., is  exalted among men."
>
>Bruce: [Question 1] Do you know what "Chapter XX" of the Sutta
>Pitaka is?
>
>Jack: In one of our books, Chapter XX is called "The Way". It
>starts out with: "The best of paths is the Eightfold;...".
>
>Bruce: [Question 2] Do you know what the Sanskrit/Pali word is for
>"created?" Do you know if "created" is an appropriate translation
>of whatever word it might be?
>
>Jack: The Max Muller translation is used. In another reference to
>created things or creatures, in the Sutta-Nipata there is a hymn to
>love in which the word "creatures" is used many times: "May
>creatures all abound in weal and peace; may all be blessed with
>peace always; all creatures weak and strong, all creatures great
>and small; creatures unseen and seen, etc." In our book,
>"creatures" are "created things". What does yours say?
>
>Jack: (continuing) Also, in the Udana, v. 81, the Buddha says:
>"There is, O monks, an unborn, unoriginated, uncreated, unformed.
>Were there not, O monks, this unborn, unoriginated, uncreated,
>unformed, there would be no escape from the world of the born,
>originated, created, formed..."
>
>Bruce: [Question 3] Do know the context of this passage? And can
>you discuss each of the "un" words as they appear elsewhere within
>the Pali texts and tell us what they refer to?
>
>Jack: As Gautama states: "The man who is free from credulity, who
>knows the Uncreated, who has severed all ties, who has put an end
>to all occasions, who has renounced all desires, he, indeed, is
>exalted among men." In the environment of a multitude of man-
>created gods and superstitious rituals, Gautama Buddha stressed
>that truth is not easily perceived; that there is an Absolute
>beyond the world of the born, originated, created, formed to which
>deliverance exists; that if it were not for this Absolute, there
>would be no escape from the dependent world. That which is beyond
>this world is without form and without suffering. What is dependent
>moves; this Absolute is independent and beyond change or movement
>(for it is "uncaused"). It is with this Absolute, this Eternal
>Reality, that Siddharta teaches us of the unreal nature of the
>world and admonishes us to free ourselves from its entanglements.
>     What attributes He attached to the Uncreated, the
>Unoriginated; His definition of the Eternal requires an analysis
>within the context of Buddha's origins, if their meaning is to be
>clear to us. That He did acknowledge the Eternal and cleared the
>path to It, by sweeping away the overlain growth of centuries of
>blind beliefs and rituals, so that human beings with clearer vision
>and renewed vitality may approach "It" to gain an assurance of
>immortality for their souls.
>
>Bruce: It would be very foolish to think that the Buddha in his 45
>years of teaching was not concerned with the preservation of his
>message.
>
>Jack: Of course, He must have been concerned. So were all the other
>Prophets. Yet people remember the Messengers but forget the
>messages. The symptoms affecting Buddhism are to be found in all
>the other ancient Faiths.
>
>Bruce: [Question 4] I gave you a lengthy discussion of how the
>message of the Buddha was very carefully preserved, but you have
>only implied with no justification that somehow the Buddha's
>message was lost. How do you know that the Buddha's message was
>lost; how do you know that the monks and nuns have not kept the
>spirit and letter of the Buddha alive?
>
>Jack: Sorry, Bruce, you misunderstood. I have not implied nor
>stated that "somehow Buddha's message was lost"! His Message was
>endowed with the authority of the Eternal, the Unoriginated, the
>Causeless Cause, however one may define the undefinable. Buddha
>language of the Brahmins. As He said in the Dhammapada, v. 100,
>"Better than chanting a thousand words in a dead language
>[Sanskrit] is one soothing word in the vernacular."
>     The original teachings of all the prophets and philosophers,
>unless recorded by their authors, the hand of time erases human
>memory with far greater ease than it effects physical objects. The
>meaning of a teacher's words are soon altered by the student's
>understanding and the unconscious, or even deliberate, attempts to
>suit them to an ever-evolving society. Lacking a system of
>infallible interpretation of the founder's original teachings, a
>mechanism established by the founder himself and accepted by his
>followers as infallible, still divisions and differences inevitably
>appear in every organization involving human understanding.
>Buddhism was no exception to this tragedy which befalls every
>Faith. In the absence of any authentically verifiable writings of
>the Buddha Himself and also of an infallible mechanism to interpret
>such teachings, His religion, like the Faiths gone before and
>others yet to come, was cleft with schisms soon after His passing.
>By the close of the first century after the Buddha's death,
>different schools of thought as to the original meaning and purpose
>of the Buddha's teachings and others soon developed. True,
>Buddhism's early history was a constant toil to maintain its
>integrity from the penetrations of a greatly encrusted Hinduism
>from whose body the new Faith had sprung.
>     To avoid becoming a part of the Hindu preoccupations with a
>multitude of personal and semi-human gods, Buddha relegated them to
>an empirical order within His world view by describing them as
>angels or spirit-beings. Thus we do not find in Buddhism the
>standard anthropomorphic concepts of God as "Creator" or "Father"
>or "Beloved", for these are intimate symbols created by the mind of
>humans for
>ry nature
>the "Unknown" and the Absolute cannot be familiar. Buddha's aim was
>to assert the concept of the Supreme beyond definition while also
>become substitutional foci for worship and supplications.
>
>Bruce: You claim that there was confusion over what the Buddha
>meant is an arrogant as it is ignorant of the history of Buddhist
>ideas.
>
>Jack: Then, let's take an example of this alleged confusion, Bruce.
>Your claim of `atheism' attributed to the Buddha's doctrine seems
>to dwell only on His tirades against the Hindu pantheon of
>anthropomorphic deities. The far-fetched assertions of the Brahmins
>in His day claimed all sorts of affiliations with the Absolute and
>proclaimed detailed knowledge concerning Its nature, Its form and
>Its dictates. They constantly confronted the Buddha who stood
>opposed to such anthropomorphic concepts of the Absolute or Brahma
>that the Brahmins and the masses held at His time. His
>vituperations were clearly directed against those vain imaginings,
>to such all too human gods. His distaste strengthens for us His
>affirmation of the Absolute - the Unmanifested Brahma of the
>Upanishads, as He states in the Digha-nikaya, I. 235. (Tevijja
>Sutta): "What do the Brahmins say of Brahma? Is his mind full of
>malice, sloth or pride?" "No, sir!" said Vasetta. The Holy One
>said: "The Brahmins cling to the five things leading to worldliness
>and yield to the temptations of the senses."
>
>Bruce: [Question 5]  Have you actually read the full text of the
>Tevijja Sutta?
>
>Jack: Why? Would you like me to quote what I read? It's long.
>
>Jack: (continuing)  It is evident that the Buddha is discrediting
>not the Unmanifest Brahma, the Absolute or God, but only those
>forms and attributes of Brahma concocted by the Brahmins to assert
>their superiority over the masses through their claims to
>characterize the Supreme. But the Buddha is not reserved about
>claiming to know the way to Brahma. He states: "the Tathagata
>(Buddha) knows the straight path that leads to a union with Brahma.
>He knows it as one who has entered the world of Brahma and has been
>born in it."
>
>Bruce: [Question 6] There a number of discourses in the Pali texts
>that deal with this subject, have you read them? Do you know by
>what adjective the Buddha characterizes the goal of union with
>Brahma?
>
>Jack: Unfortunately, we are living here in a war-torn country and
>don't have access to everything we would like. Of course, if you
>would either E-mail or send to us all the Pali texts that deal with
>this subject, we would be more than delighted to read them all.
>Croatia. Naturally, we would reimburse you for any books you would
>send. Just mark the package "Educational Material".
>
>Jack: (continuing) This eternal Reality, whether we call it the
>Unmanifest Brahma, or the Uncreated, or the Supreme, or the
>Absolute, the Essence or God, reveals Itself to Buddhas Who are
>perfect mirrors reflecting Its truth (Dharma).
>
>Bruce: [Question 7] Do you know what the Buddha claimed as being
>the source of his enlightenment?
>
>Jack: It may be argued by some, and perhaps correctly so, that in
>the light of what He was to claim, i.e., the uniqueness of His
>kind, it was not only the discipline or dharma that led Him to
>enlightenment (Buddhahood) but an exaltation from the Absolute, and
>that He only went through the gamut of penances and vigils in order
>to demonstrate to His disciples and friends that the ascetics and
>savants of His day were howling up the wrong tree and that
>enlightenment (Buddhahood) was a world apart, a destined event.
>Thus we view Buddha as a recurring manifestation of the Omniscient
>and Almighty. He showed that the six years in the forest practicing
>Hindu ascetics as futile in achieving the goal of transcendental
>enlightenment and for turning the wheel of Dharma. These practices
>faded into nothingness before the simplicity and power of the Truth
>that He had so dramatically beheld and that He desired "to give
>light to those enshrouded in darkness, and to open the gate of
>immortality to men." (Majjhima-nikaya, v. 26) Yet in the eyes of
>five of His original disciples, He had failed miserably in His
>attempts at mastery over His body and therefore forfeited every
>claim to allegiance from them. But Kondanna, one of them, told the
>others they were blind. But their belief in Hindu asceticism was
>too deeply ingrained for them to protest that Gautama, Who had
>failed before when He had His body under control, was hardly the
>one Who should be preaching to them now that He so freely catered
>to His physical needs. He responded to their scorn by setting forth
>basic precepts of His religion, preserved in the
>Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta.
>
>Jack: (continuing)  In this following and other passages (e.g.,
>Majjhima- nikaya, 1. 137-140), Buddha unequivocally refutes any
>denial of the Essence: "And as all things originate from one
>Essence, so they are developing according to one law, and they are
>destined to one aim, which is Nirvana. Nirvana comes to thee,
>Kassapa, when thou understand thoroughly and when thou livest
>according to the understanding, that all things are from one
>Essence...
>
>Bruce: [Question 8] Yes or no, have you read the Majjhimanikaya I
>137-140?
>
>Jack: Why do you ask? The above quote on the Essence came from the
>Sanskrit Dhammapada, v., not the Majjhima-nikaya. Do you want this
>quote yours?
>
>Jack:(repeating for question 9) Buddha continues: "And as all
>things originate from one Essence, so they are developing according
>to one law, and they are destined to one aim, which is Nirvana."
>
>Bruce: [Question 9] Is this an actual Buddhist texts?
>
>Jack: As mentioned above, this is a partial quote from the Sanskrit
>Dhammapada. Would you like a full quote?
>
>Bruce: [Question 10] What did the Buddha say about claims of
>
>Jack: Chapter XIV of the Sutta Pitaka, entitled: "The Buddha - The
>Awakened" starts out: "He whose conquest cannot be conquered again,
>into whose conquest no one in this world enters, by what track can
>you lead him, the Awakened, the Omniscient, the trackless?" We have
>seen more statements, but don't have time now to track them all
>down. Omniscient, of course, means all-knowing, having all
>knowledge enabled by the reception of Divine Truth.
>
>Jack:(continuing) In the Digha-nikaya, III.84, Buddha gives a clue
>to the paradox facing Buddhist atheist and non-atheist exponents:
>"This, Vasettha, is a synonym for the Tathagata: Dhamma-body and
>again Brahma-body, and again Dhamma-become and again
>Brahma-become."'
>
>Bruce: [Question 11] Do you know that the words tathagata and
>buddha are also used by the Buddha to refer to the enlightened
>follower?
>
>Jack: While it is easy to see that we could not have any "Buddhism"
>unless a Buddha had revealed it, we must bear in mind that "Buddha"
>is not the name of a person but designates a type. "Buddha" in
>Sanskrit means someone who is "fully enlightened" about the nature
>and meaning of life. Numerous "Buddhas" appear successively at
>suitable intervals. One most important facet of our premise, that
>the Buddha, like Krishna, Christ and the other Prophets, was also
>inspired and endowed with His own mission by the Supreme Creator,
>rests on the fact that Buddhism clearly does not consider itself to
>be the record of the sayings of one man who lived in northern India
>about 500 B.C. His teachings are represented as the uniform result
>of an oft-repeated manifestation of spiritual reality into this
>world. The names of 24 of these Buddhas who appeared previous to
>Gautama have been handed down to us, and in a period of thousands
>of years, when the true message of Gautama is forgotten, and people
>will have strayed far from the path of salvation, a new Buddha will
>arise to again open the door of Nirvana to humanity. He will be
>called "Maitreya Buddha," which means the Buddha whose name is
>"Kindness".
>     Of course, the Surangama Sutta talks about "perfect Arhats,
>firmly established in the Divine Life, distinguished for their
>superiority to all worldly influences, having perfectly mastered
>all human knowledge...Besides there were countless Pratyeka
>Buddhists [but not fully enlightened Buddhas], all of them Arhats".
>This particular Sutta may be puzzling and amusing to a Western
>philosopher. Just as we are all made in the image of God, we are
>also made in the image of Buddha. In this sense, all of us possess
>the nature of a Buddha. But there is so much dust (prejudices) on
>the mirrors of our souls, we cannot reflect much of the Light of
>Buddha. We should distinguish ourselves, however, from that of the
>Perfect Buddha. It seems that the right view from which to see the
>Perfect Buddha, according to His own words, would be to see Him as
>one of the "Fully Enlightened Beings," continuously manifesting
>themselves for the guidance and salvation of humanity as the "Fully
>Omniscient Teachers of mankind." A continuity of Buddhas or divine
>Messengers, or by whatever name you may wish to identify these
>great spiritual suns, becomes clearer, as is stated in
>Milindapanha, p. 285: "there is no distinction between any of the
>Buddhas...for all the Buddhas are exactly the same as regards
>Buddha-dhammas."
>
>Jack:(continuing) Buddha is also referred to in the texts as the
>Self-Existent, the Blessed One, the Universal Mind."
>
>Bruce: [Question 12] And you cite this text, and give a careful
>exegetical discussion of its technical terms?
>
>Jack: Yes, Bruce. First we all know that Buddha is referred to as
>"the Blessed One" so profusely in the texts that we assume there's
>no contest here. (If you can't find them, we will give you endless
>citations.) The Surangama Sutra states: "The Master said to me:
>`All the Buddhas and all sentient beings are nothing but Universal
>Mind, besides which nothing exists. This Mind, which has always
>existed, is unborn and indestructible...
>     This Universal Mind alone is the Buddha and there is no
>distinction between the Buddha and sentient beings, but sentient
>beings are attached to particular forms and so seek for Buddhahood
>outside it...
>     The Buddha is directly before them, for this (Universal) Mind
>is the Buddha and the Buddha is all living beings. It is not the
>less for being manifested in ordinary beings, nor is it greater for
>being manifested in the Buddha. [Note: This corresponds precisely
>to Baha'u'llah's statements in the Tablet of Wisdom. Have you read
>it? It also corresponds to the rather long message on primary
>matter sent some time ago that you dismissed as "discredited neo-
>Platonism". Universal Mind equates to the Will of God, the Command
>of God, the Word of God, the Uncaused Cause. And the soul is of the
>same substance as the Universal Mind. Furthermore, as a theoretical
>physicist, I equate this Universal Mind with primary matter, which
>after all, is spiritual, not material at all, and has all the
>Attributes and Names of God. Mind you, it is not equated with God
>in Essence, the Unknown, the Ancient One, but with the Word, the
>Command, the Will of God.]...
>     This pure Mind, Source of everything, shines on all with the
>brilliance of Its own perfection, but the people of the world do
>not awake to it, regarding only that which hears, feels, and knows
>as mind. Because their understanding is veiled by their own sight,
>hearing, feeling, and knowledge. they do not perceive the spiritual
>brilliance of the original substance [that I call primary matter].
>If they could only eliminate all analytical thinking in a flash,
>that original substance would manifest Itself like the sun
>ascending through the void and illuminating the whole universe
>without hindrance or bounds...
>     If students of the Way desire to become Buddhas [in the
>Nirvana sense], they need not study anything of the Dharma
>whatsoever. They should only study how to avoid seeking for or
>clinging to anything. If nothing is sought, the Mind will remain in
>its "unborn state" and, if nothing is clung to, the mind will not
>go through the process of destruction. That which is neither born
>nor destroyed is the Buddha.'"
>     An example of Buddha being referred to as the Self-Existent:
>From the Lankavatara Sutra on Nirvana and its entrance, the Hymn to
>the Buddha of Infinite Compassion and Wisdom reads: "Homage to the
>Self-Existent! Wonderful His many works, .... Everlasting,
>unlimited, and which cannot be surpassed."
>
>Addendum: When the battle against the belief in the powers of the
>gods of Hinduism became the dominant passion of the early champions
>of Buddhism, they found it beyond the scope of their cosmogony to
>form a true understanding or even an appreciation of the allusions
>by the Buddha concerning the Universal Mind, the Self-Existent, the
>Un-Create or the Causeless Cause, [See Udana, 80-81], devoid of
>shape or size. Instead these Buddhist "fundamentalists" felt it
>safer to predicate their philosophy on an abundance of rules,
>leading to an unimaginable condition of bliss, the attainment of
>which was determined by a limited causality of discernable and
>explainable causes and effects, forever turning human actions into
>their resultant effects ad infinitum, but without a clue to the
>real origin of this causality (Karma) and, therefore, devoid of the
>finally congealed into the fallacious doctrine to ignore and
>eventually deny the belief in an all-pervading, omniscient and
>omnipotent Cause for the whole scheme of things, physical and
>metaphysical - a fallacy in which the Buddha could have had no
>part. We have no proof as to the time this rejection of a supreme
>and absolute Reality congealed within early Buddhism, or when it
>became transformed into a belief in a nebulous state of bliss,
>Nirvana, which itself was never acknowledged by the Buddha as the
>ground of all things. The words of the Buddha about an underlying
>Reality refer to an Entity, "Unoriginated," "Unborn," and not to
>the state of bliss, Nirvana, or non-craving ("there is O monks a
>state where...there is an end to sorrow"). Yet, it is possible that
>those most interested in giving prominence to and even conceiving
>this Buddhist credo of non-belief in the "Absolute" might have been
>the Brahmins themselves. Seeing the simplicity of the Buddha's
>doctrine and its dynamic appeal to the masses, they realized only
>too well the danger to their own priestly authority. They
>recognized the "advantage" of attaching to the Buddha's nascent
>doctrine that one label, the categorical denial of the existence of
>god, which would ensure its rejection by the large mass of people.
>This is precisely the fate Buddhism experienced in the land of its
>birth. It should be no surprise to note that the denial of the
>existence of the Supreme or the Absolute - God - is, together with
>the rejection of the Soul, the main aspects of Buddhism to have
>been "clearly understood" and exploited by the Brahmins.
>     The notion that the Buddha did not believe in a Creator is
>further exacerbated in recent times by many a so-called authority
>on Buddhism, especially among western writers, jumping into the
>arena of explaining the Buddha's teachings, oblivious of the
>identity of the Buddha's psyche with the concepts embedded in the
>philosophy and religion of Hindu India. Prisoners of their own
>Judeo-Christian concepts of an anthropomorphic God, these western
>writers rush in to analyze and describe what they imagine to be the
>essence of the Buddha's doctrine. In an almost clinical atmosphere
>of isolation, where the phenomenon of the Buddha and His teachings
>appear to them as some detached and alien event, severed from its
>frame of reference and uprooted from the soil of its physical and
>psychological birth. Such analyses and expositions of the Buddha's
>teachings, by most if not all western scholars, has resulted in the
>production of deformity. They did not gain a clearer understanding
>of the spiritual and the practical application of the great
>religions of the East, each and all predicated on the belief in the
>existence of an "Unoriginated" and incomprehensible "Causeless
>Cause" periodically manifesting "Itself" to the world of creation
>as an extension of the evolutionary process of the rational soul.
>Such attempts at showing Buddhism as a uniquely different
>phenomenon, devoid of an underlying Reality, results in the
>invention of an oddity within the structure of Religion, completely
>opposite to the foundations of Buddhism and Religion in general.
>     Efforts by ideologies and "isms" such as humanism, atheism,
>agnosticism, etc. to "draft" the Buddha as "champion" or "chairman"
>of their movements have failed. None of these have shown any
>capability for converting their "panaceas" into practical cures for
>the ills of the human race. Already fragmented among themselves,
>such movements are powerless to meet today's challenges.
>     Alternatives articulated by some western philosophers on the
>concept of the Primal Being vacillated between a anthropomorphic
>God and an inanimate super-cause effecting total cosmic mechanisms.
>Although at first unconcerned about the existence of the mind
>within our cosmos, some physicists are now beginning to recognize
>that the realm of pure Mind, infinite and unanalyzable, seems to
>demonstrate Its presence through intelligible laws governing all
>physical and spiritual existence. The Buddha not only declares the
>existence of such a Mind as the underlying Reality but also
>acknowledges It as "the ground of being," from which physicists
>realize creation must emanate. The Buddha gave It no name or form.
>This Supreme Being can never be known except through Its names and
>attributes. The unlimited set of Its Names and Attributes
>Baha'u'llah equates with the Will or Word of God, the Uncaused
>Cause, the Universal Mind. How otherwise could "truth" exist that
>reflects the Essence if the "Unborn, Unoriginated, Uncreated,
>Unformed" did not exist? If this "Uncaused Reality" did not exist,
>how could there be a Buddha to show humanity's heart the path to
>the abode of the Eternal?
>

=END=

From: KCentolell@aol.com
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 15:22:38 -0500
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Talisman

Have tried to subscribe through Majordomo, great difficulty
Thank you.

=END=

Date: 9 Feb 96 10:59:57 U
From: "Dan Orey"
Subject: FWD>Response to E-mail rec.
To: talisman@indiana.edu

GatorMail-Q                   FWD>Response to E-mail rec.Feb
A friend in Canada just fowarded this to me and asked that I share it with
Talisman. It pretty much summs up my fears, that the UHJ message is now out and
being shared at higher and higher circles. As well to date there have at least
three people of the former GBF IUS have withdrawn from the Faith. To say that
my heart is breaking is less than accurate.  - Daniel

----------

from a seeker or fomer Baha'i, I was unclear,

[Quote] "Thank you for the material on the Baha'is. Many years ago I was
connected with them but then I could see that they were so caught up in
Baha'u'llah that they had lost sight of what he was about. Now from
reading the material which you have sent me I see they are even more
entrenched in the word for word archives that they have lost the sense of
the spirit which dwells in him. I separated from them because of their
stance on gays. The material you sent puts them on the same level as the
Chriatian Fundamentalists holding on to old records and words which were
appropriate for another time and are not relevant for our time. The need
to hold on to the past is a very distructive act which imprisions them
within walls of separation. Separation is the greatest and most intensive
violation of spiritual law.

"You ask what I think. I think the Baha'i group is stuck and I see no
glimmer to get unstuck. In other words, I see no movement. I see also
denial of the changing dynamic of the universe..." [End quote]

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 13:07:46 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Baha'i in Iran sentenced to death for apostasy.
To: talisman@indiana.edu
To: Bahai-st@jcccnet.johnco.cc.ks.us
To: SBirkland@aol.com
To: lwalbrid@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
To: barney@leith.demon.co.uk

Dear Friends
I have just received offical word that a Baha'i in Iran has been
sentenced to death for treason on the grounds of apostasy. The moment I
receive the actual name and further details I will post.
I believe prayers are required.
Loving Regards
Derek Cockshut

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 14:04:58 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Hope (fwd)

Dear Talizens--

Terry asked that I forward this private message to Talisman.

Nima

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 11:52:55 -0500
From: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Subject: Hope

Dear Nima ,

Lest we despair in the face of seemingly intractable  conditions
remember hope .  remember that those who perpetrate injustice  , especially
those within the Bahai community are answerable to Bahau llah . We need to
remember the apocalyptic prophet and tradition . Those injustices and those
people Baha u lah says "are not of me "and "I am quit of them."
The Cause of God is more than the Bahai community. This is the minor
plan of God ; there is also the major plan . The contrast betwen major and
minor is significant . Minor by its nature is less than the whole , it does
not encompass the entirety of the whole or mystically the *One *. In a
holographic way it mirrors or reflects the whole , the *One* .As such it
mirrors both the Siyah Chal and the Ridvan of humankind.  I think it is this
dialectic that is such a challenge for Bahai's ; it is the challenge of Bahau
llah . How to create a religious community that can model to the world and
mirror to the *One* the reflection of its own Beauty without succumbing to
the numbing nihilism of the world or degenerate into a triumphalist vision -
a kind of fundamentalism - which reduces the world and its people to the
minor plan of God .

It means speaking of spiritual impoverishment both wothin and without the
Bahai community if we would be a model of anything to anybody . It means
joining hands with all our brothers and sisters both within and without the
Bahai community and letting them know they are not alone. It means healing
the age old divisions of race , and class and gender - and offering people
the possibility of hope and courage . It means grounding that hope in a
profound recognition of the Siyah Chal and Ridvan that are refelected in the
very life of the Prophet. It means embracing a universal rather than
sectarian  understanding ; embracing the Prophetic mission -of salvation and
redemption and conversion . It means diagnosing and transcending the awful
disease of nihilism  which eats at the human soul the way alcoholism and drug
addiction eat away the body . It means combining the ethic of justice with
the ethic of care and love. it means not being swayed by the powerful
"traditional defenders of religious orthodoxy without " or of being deterred
by the "neferious elements " within the community ; those who would betray
the prophetic witness of Bahau llah  for their own ends or who confuse the
Cause of God with the Bahai community and the Bahai community with
administration.  It means holding out Hope to all those who have and will
suffer from the spiritually and socially devastating effects of life
organized around "market values ".  It means being the bearers of hope that
their are those who still believe in the Promise and will commit to the
creation of a community based on the non market values of love and justice
and solidarity. This means a spiritual and cultural renaissance that holds
out the hope that we can establish a community based on those non -market
values both within and without the Bahai community. It means joining hands
with all those who have the same hope .

The *Hope * i am speaking of is neither naive nor optimistic . Hope is
the recognition of the potential for good and for evil in the human condition
and still affirming the desirability and indeed the possibility of a world
centered on non market values ; on the affirmation that human beings can
still transform their condition .  Hope is believing in spite of the evidence
- and watching the evidence change . Hope is holding out the hand of healing
and love to those opressed  and not denying  but recognizing their pain .
Hope is holding out the hand of justice and reconciliation to those who have
oppressed and  not ,denying but recognizing their injustices.

Hope is grounded in the act of *Remembrance* and not forgetfulness.
Hope says to those wronged ones we know and have not forgotten  and it says
to those wrong doers we know  and will not forget .  And it says to both we
still believe - we still have Faith .  Hope says come let us build a
community in which "Force is the servant of justice " , in which
administration is the servant of community and a community which is grounded
in the worship - the love and justice - of the One True God .

warmest regards and love ,
Terry

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 16:35:12 -0500
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
From: mlp@sover.net (Marie L. Procter)
Subject: Apology re: free speech and liberalism

Dear Richard and All,

A thousand apologies for my impulsive post  to your thoughtful  remarks
about  power, anti-liberalism and free speech.  I'm not sure why I chose to
respond to this particular thread on Talisman - perhaps because I have been
troubled for many years by my perception of a conservative stream our
of these thoughts to life.

I am deeply sorry that you took my remarks about radiant acquiescence to
mean that I thought that you were only interested in a strict code of laws
to be followed.  Please pardon me for the distress this brought to your
soul.   I sense from rereading a number of your posts that you have a deep
love, nay passion,  for the Faith and are well-equipped to challenge
interpretations and assertions that strike a dissonant chord. Your insights
and comments on the issue of human rights, liberalism, democracy and free
speech, for example, were especially interesting (and provocative?)  to me.
If I may pick up the thread again, I would like to comment on the notion,
if I understand you correctly,  that in the New World Order there will no
longer be a need to guarantee our "rights" because humankind will have
reached a stage of maturity where they will be a given. It strikes me that
the insistence on laws guaranteeing our rights is possibly a reflection of
our fear that without them, those who are prone to "evil" will, in fact,
usurp them.  It certainly seems to have been the case throughout history
including the present day.  I truly believe that EVIL does not exist as a
force in the universe, but that  human beings and the institutions they
manage have great capacity to do evil when their hearts are turned from the
Light of Divine Teachings.   Even when our hearts are turned towards the
light, we are not free from error, misjudgment, obstinacy, recalcitrance,
negligence and disobedience.  These qualities affect the way we administer
the affairs of the Faith as well as the quality of our lives.  This, to me,
explains the deep concern many have with the importance of guaranteeing
human rights during this Age of Transition.

I, too,  pray that we will get on with process of spiritual transformation
and smooth the way for a grander system of governance based on the "heart
of a people" as opposed to the "will of the people" where the issue of
guaranteeing ones "rights" will be less of a burning issue.  I like this
emphasis on "heart" as the basis for doing the right thing towards one's
fellow man because it puts more attention on the subjective feelings of
compassion, forgiveness, mercy and understanding.  "Will," on the other
hand,  seems to place more emphasis on, steadfastness, persistence,
determination, force, justice, and objectivity.  IMHO we need a lot more
heart in our undertakings, but we also need "will"  to get things done.
Baha'u'llah emphasizes both.  The balance is crucial, as I am sure you
would agree.  Thank you for bringing up these and so many other fine points
in the continuing dialogue of "burning"  issues that concern our Faith.

BTW, I never thanked you for your lovely welcome to my introduction.  I
learned a little about YOU from a recent visit to your homepage.  It's
beautiful!  Do you have a way of keeping track of how many times people
have visited?

In anticipation of future cordial exchanges,  Marie

=END=

From: SFotos@eworld.com
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 13:28:17 -0800
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Dr. Burl's secret

Dear Talismans,

Yes. All is finally revealed about the cryptic Dr. Burl.  The keen analytical
mind of Steven Coles has identified the noted Dr's secret craving.

>Dr. Burl, I must insist that you sample Seattle's tattoo
>services yourself before recommending a place for young ladies.

Steven, this is *exactly* what Dr. Burl wants; this explains his many
obsessive posts about tattoos on innocent others.

One can only imagine what design the Dr would choose....

Signed,
Fearful at the thought

**************************

Buy MULTIMEDIA LANGUAGE TEACHING edited by Sandra Fotos.
Alta Books.

***************************

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 14:56:30 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Bruce Burrill" , "Talisman"

Dear Bruce,

I know another edition is of Mr. Fozdar book is about to come out,  If
you believe his book is of such a nature perhaps you would like me to
supply you with his address and phone number.  I'm a personal friend of
his and perhaps you would like to make these charges to his face, rather
than fouling the air on Talisman with backbitting.

I'm sure you are well meaning but I believe you have broken the code of
the list.

Richard

>
>>Date: Fri, 09 Feb 1996 00:33:01
>>To: The Bridge Across Consciousness
>>From: Bruce Burrill
>>Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
>>
>>Jack Coleman,
>>
>>I think you need to post your reply to me on Talisman. I would be very
>>interested in hearing other Baha'i responses to what you've written, none
>>of which surprises me in the least.
>>
>>books. Now, you know my opinion of these books because I sent you
>>a private message about them. Let me repeat some of what I have said

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: "Dan Orey" , talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Fri, 9 Feb 1996 16:47:49 EST
Subject:       Re: FWD>Response to E-mail rec.

Dear Dan,

very dear friend who was in Japan for awhile teaching ESL who is gay.
I truly love him like a son. And we had very deep and honest
discussions about the issue. He does not live here anymore.

One thing that pained me was a life that is condemned to celibacy
without choice. A heterosexual person has a choice to be celibate,
but homosexual one does not. This bothered me alot when he and I
spoke about it. So, when we speak of chastity for the heteros it is
different in that they may get married and be recognized as a couple.

Here in Raleigh N.C. a progressive Baptist Minister with whom I
served on Interfaith Committee on Human Relations married a gay
couple and there was an uproar in town. Mahan Siler is a wonderful
man and I respected him alot. I do not know the couple who got
married, but I have other gay friends who may someday. How do you

love,
quanta

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 23:51:30+030
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: dpeden@imul.com (Don Peden)
Subject: unfortunate messages

>    Without mentioning any names, there was a posting made to the list a
>couple of days ago on Talisman which gave the appearance that there is
>some sort of Talisman inner circle who are involved in some sort of a
>conspiracy to implement a special agenda on the Baha'i community.
>
>portion of the letter (obviously intended for Majnun, the list which
>gave birth to Talisman, which I had no idea still existed in any form).
>However, because of John's and Linda's subsequent letters, I decided
>against it. Instead, I just decided to ask a couple of questions: What
>is all of this about? Is Talisman a "missionary outreach" of Majnun?

Me thinks you are seeing spooks under the bed.

Love,

Bev.

=END=

From: KCentolell@aol.com
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 17:12:31 -0500
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: subscribe

for information, sent previous note to you, having difficulty trying to
subscribe to Talisman.  We are Baha'i family in Aliso Viejo, California.
Kathy Centolella and ruie Mullins, 16 Timberland, Aliso Viejo, CA 92656

=END=

Date: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 16:41:36 -0500 (EST)
From: Mary E Wylie
Subject: Re: Baha'i in Iran sentenced to death for apostasy.
To: DEREK COCKSHUT
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu, Bahai-st@jcccnet.johnco.cc.ks.us, SBirkland@aol.com,
lwalbrid@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu, barney@leith.demon.co.uk

Prayer said:

"In the Name of God, the Lord of overpowering majesty, the All-Compelling.
. . . . . He maketh victorious Whomsoever He pleaseth, through the
potency of His behest. . . .
. . Verily, Thy protection over all things is unfailing."
. . . . . the Bab
U.S.Prayerbook pp.133-135
("the original of this  prayer for protection is written in the Bab's own
hand, in the form of a pentacle.")

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Fri, 09 Feb 1996 23:22:13 +0100 (MET)
Subject: Ashchi backgrounder
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Thanks for more of Ashchi, Ahang.
Here is some homework from me

Re Shahr-Banu, the daughter of the late Aqa Mirza
Muhammad-Husayn, who was intended for `Abdu'l-Baha, there is
a cross-reference in Munirih Khanum, Memoirs and Letters,
[Kalimat] p 24f, where Sayyid Mihdi Dahiji is reported as
saying:
...One day when the Blessed Beauty was in the outer
rooms of the house, as he paced about he said, "Aqa
Sayyid Mihdi, last night I had a strange dream. I dreamt
that the face of the beautiful girl in Tehran, whose hand
in marriage we have asked from our brother Mirza Hasan
for the Most Great Branch, gradually became darkened
and indistinct. At the same time, another girl appeared
with a luminous face and a luminous heart. I have chosen
here for the Most Great Branch."
A footnote there refers to the obstruction of this match by Aqa
Mirza Rida-Quliy-i Nuri, with a reference to Baha'u'llah: The
King of Glory, pp 342-44 (which I don't have). Would somebody like to check
King of Glory and see how it matches with the passage below?

Baha'u'llah refers to this proposed match briefly, and blames the
obstruction on one of his sisters, not on Aqa Mirza Rida-Quliy-i
Nuri:
However, Our late brother Mirza Muhammad-Hasan's
daughter - upon him be the glory of God and His peace
and His mercy  - who had been betrothed to the Most
Great Branch (Abdu'l-Baha) was taken by the sister of
this Wronged One from Nur to her own house, and from
there sent unto another place.  Some of Our companions
and friends in various places complained against this, as it
was a very grievous act, and was disapproved by all the
loved ones of God.  How strange that Our sister should
have taken her to her own house, and then arranged for
her to be sent elsewhere! In spite of this, this Wronged
One remained, and still remaineth, calm and silent.
(Epistle to the Son of the Wolf, page 170)

Rida-Quli is referred to by Baha'u'llah in at least one place
Subsequent to Our separation in the Land of Ta (Tihran),
We ceased to meet Mirza Rida-Quli, Our brother, and no
special news reached Us concerning her.  In the early
days we all lived in one house, which later on was sold at
auction, for a negligible sum, and the two brothers,
Farman-Farma and Hisamu's-Saltanih, purchased it and
divided it between themselves.  After this occurred, We
separated from Our brother.  He established his residence
close to the entrance of Masjid-i-Shah, whilst We lived
near the Gate of Shimiran. (Epistle to the Son of the
Wolf, pages 169-170)
It is not clear to me whether this is estrangement or simply
setting up separate households. Shoghi Effendi refers to this
brother being in the Siyah-Chal:
In the village of Takur, at the bidding of the Shah, the
property of the inhabitants was pillaged, Haji Mirza
Rida-Quli, a half-brother of Baha'u'llah, was arrested,
conducted to the capital and thrown into the Siyah-Chal,
where he remained for a month, ... (God Passes By, page
199)
and one wonders how he came to released so rapidly.

Ustad Isma'il: there's a chapter on him in Memorials of the
Faithful, pages 29-32, according to which he became known
throughout Tihran as a pillar of the Baha'is. It became dangerous,
and he departed for Iraq, where he lived in poverty.
"He had recently taken a bride, and loved her beyond
measure.  Her mother arrived, and by subterfuge, obtained
his permission to conduct the daughter back to Tihran,
supposedly for a visit.  As soon as she reached
Kirmanshah, she went to the mujtahid, and told him that
because her son-in-law had abandoned his religion, her
daughter could not remain his lawful wife.  The mujtahid
arranged a divorce, and wedded the girl to another man.
ever, only laughed.  "God be praised!" he said.  "Nothing
is left me on this pathway.  I have lost everything,
including my bride.  I have been able to give Him all I
possessed."
When Baha'u'llah departed from Baghdad, and traveled to
Rumelia, the friends remained behind.  The inhabitants of
Baghdad then rose up against those helpless believers,
sending them away as captives to Mosul.  Ustad was old
and feeble, but he left on foot, with no provisions for his
journey, crossed over mountains and deserts, valleys and
hills, and in the end arrived at the Most Great Prison. ...
By stealth, he approached the Fortress and went in, but he
was exhausted, spent.  He remained for some days, and
came into the presence of Baha'u'llah, after which he was
directed to look for a lodging in Haifa.  He got himself to
Haifa, but he found no haven there, no nest or hole, no
water, no grain of corn.  Finally he made his home in a
cave outside the town.  He acquired a little tray and on
this he set out rings of earthenware, and some thimbles,
pins and other trinkets.  Every day, from morning till
noon, he peddled these, ...  Then he would go home to the
cave and content himself with a piece of bread.  He was
always voicing his thanks, always saying, "Praise be to
God that I have attained such favor and grace; that I have
been separated from friend and stranger alike, and have
taken refuge in this cave.  Now I am of those who gave
their all, to buy the Divine Joseph in the market place.
What bounty could be any greater than this!"
Such was his condition, when he died.  Many and many a
time, Baha'u'llah was heard to express His satisfaction
with Ustad Isma'il.  Blessings hemmed him round, and
the eye of God was on him.  Salutations be unto him, and
praise.  Upon him be the glory of the All-Glorious.

There is a briefer account in God Passes By, pages 187-188,
which appears to collapse some details:
Another pilgrim, Ustad Isma'il-i-Kashi, arriving from
Mosul, posted himself on the far side of the moat, and,
gazing for hours, in rapt adoration, at the window of his
Beloved, failed in the end, owing to the feebleness of his
sight, to discern His face, and had to turn back to the
cave which served as his dwelling-place on Mt. Carmel -
an episode that moved to tears the Holy Family who had
been anxiously watching from afar the frustration of his
hopes.
Here he comes from Mosul, but 'turns back' to his cave, which
may be a sign that two different narratives have been combined.
And on this occassion does not attain the presence, although
`Abdu'l-Baha says he did.

this not unimportant bit part:
He [Baha'u'llah] transferred His residence to the house of
Izzat Aqa, in which He continued to live until His
departure from Adrianople.  It was in this house, in the
month of Jamadiyu'l-Avval 1284 A.H. (Sept. 1867) that
an event of the utmost significance occurred, ...  A certain
Mir Muhammad, a Babi of Shiraz, greatly resenting alike
the claims and the cowardly seclusion of Mirza Yahya,
succeeded in forcing Siyyid Muhammad to induce him to
meet Baha'u'llah face to face, so that a discrimination
might be publicly effected between the true and the false.
Foolishly assuming that his illustrious Brother would
never countenance such a proposition, Mirza Yahya
appointed the mosque of Sultan Salim as the place for
their encounter.  No sooner had Baha'u'llah been informed
of this arrangement than He set forth, on foot, in the heat
of midday, and accompanied by this same Mir
Muhammad, for the afore-mentioned mosque, which was
situated in a distant part of the city, reciting, as He
walked, through the streets and markets, verses, in a voice
and in a manner that greatly astonished those who saw
and heard Him.
Baha'u'llah's arrival, soon returned, and informed Him that
he who had challenged His authority wished, owing to
unforeseen circumstances, to postpone for a day or two
the interview. (God Passes By, pages 168-169)

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sen McGlinn                           ph: 31-43-3216854
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: Fri, 9 Feb 1996 17:32:57 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Apology re: free speech and liberalism
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Marie L. Procter" , "Talisman"

>BTW, I never thanked you for your lovely welcome to my introduction.  I
>learned a little about YOU from a recent visit to your homepage.  It's
>beautiful!  Do you have a way of keeping track of how many times people
>have visited?
>
>In anticipation of future cordial exchanges,  Marie

I must beg your forgiveness, as I have a bad heart condition,  and my
response to you was quite inadequate.  But even though I am only 43 I
just don't seem to have the energy and stamina that I did before my heart
attacks.  My wife tells me that I am also more irritable!

I do get a lot of visitors but I have to go to a log file in my personal
internet account to see what the tally is.

I completely understand your concerns with human rights.  I'm a well
travelled individual--and I've seen what can happen with countries less
fortunate in their legal systems.  I've spent a lot of time in Latin
America as a Baha'i where the military dominates everything!  It's scary!
In Mexico, for example, just being in a car accident means a trip to
jail--guilty or innocent.  I had a motorcycle there once and some people
ran a red light and I ran into them in one of those circles where you
have multiple streets converging like spokes on a wheel.  Everyone just
ran off when the police approached--I did too!  No one wants to go to a
Mexican jail!  I could have tried "radiant acquiescence" but that was 20
years ago when I was a young punk Baha'i.  (Laughter).

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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=

[end of 2/9/96 session]

---------------------------------------------------------

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 03:22:55 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, "Carmen Mathenge"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: RE: Sex, Relative Truth, and Video Terminals

Please don't be in awe of me. It took me over 30 years to figure this out.
That's one heck of a long time!

I hope and pray that nobody can imagine what it's like. Who would want to know
exactly how it feels to be alienated from their own body and everything about
their social facade from early childhood onward? I've tried to portray it in
my visual art because I certainly can't do it in words. My art never shows
angst however. If it does even slightly, it's certainly not conscious or
literal anyway. It shows transcendent flight, radiance, and images of birth
and rebirth. That's all it ever attempts to portray.

Possibly the only words that might summarize the whole experience are: "it's a
prison." Isadora Duncan once said: "If I could say it with words, I wouldn't
be dancing it."

It's good to be free now. And it's incredibly reaffirming and strengthening to
feel the support of my Talisman sisters and brothers. Instead of me, be in awe
of my first Baha'i teacher, Sandy Fotos. She was the one who saw the
well-hidden light in a scrawny, radical, hippie wannabe in Berkeley many years
ago. In my heart I've thanked her for telling me about Baha'u'llah nearly
every day of my life. Any tiny ability that I have to endure or do anything
useful or creative comes from Baha'u'llah. And that's because there was
someone good enough and motivated and selfless enough to teach me his message.

Hannah
-----------

The Artist Formerly Known As Cary  :-)

----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of Carmen Mathenge
Sent: 	Thursday, 08 February, 1996 21:33 PM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	Re: Sex, Relative Truth, and Video Terminals

At 06:33 AM 1/30/96 UT, Hannah E. Reinstein wrote:

>However I did state that any test so profound
>must be a Divine bounty of some kind.

Dear Hannah,

I can't even imagine what it must be like to have such a test as you
describe, but I'm in awe of anyone with a faith so strong as to be able to
make the above statement while in the midst of it!

With loving Baha'i greetings,
Carmen
99999999999999999999999999999999999999
Carmen Mathenge
Lawndale, California, USA
99999999999999999999999999999999999999

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 03:47:10 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
Subject: RE: technical assistance needed

Nima, I'd like to help but I need more information. You can send it to me
they simple ASCII or are they full of control characters or non-alphanumerics?
Because if they are, those characters could be confusing your printer. Do you
have the correct print driver. Or, if working from the command line, are you
issuing the correct print or copy commands? Is the file word-wrapped and does
it contain form feeds? There are lots of other possibilities as well. On
simple text files all you need to use is the copy command to print it.

As we say in Redmond where I work: Windows Rules,

The carbon unit known as Hannah

----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of Sadra
Sent: 	Friday, 09 February, 1996 0:18 AM
To: 	Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	technical assistance needed

Talizens--

Sorry to take up bandwidth with this question, but my manual here might as
well be in 8th c. BC Babylonian :-) It's not making any sense.

without a Windows program. The communications software I'm using is
Quicklink II. My printer (HP Desk Jet) does seem to want to work. What am
I doing wrong?

Nima

**************************************************************
* Paradox is a characteristic of truth. What communis opinio *
* has of truth is surely no more than an elementary deposit  *
* of generalizing partial understanding, related to truth    *
* even as sulphurous fumes are to lightning.                 *
*                                                            *
* --From the correspondence of Count Paul von Wartenburg     *
*   and Wilhelm Dilthey                                      *
**************************************************************

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 04:03:39 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: "Jonah Winters"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: RE: Two (?) Genders

We Baha'is may have far too many standard write-offs.

I don't think that your suggested approach is off-base. Personally, I'm not
convinced that clear-cut dualisms explain Creation. In fact, the last metaphor
I presented was a trinity. As I don't understand Taoist philosophy, I suggest
that there are many people on this alias who are better qualified to comment.
I don't know how to relate the concept of a gender spectrum with a dualistic
philosophy. My posts are simply experiential and intuitive. That limits them

Different strokes for different folks.

Hannah
------------
She travels by night, the sun is her moon.  A creature without memory of the
half life of human existence. Only the anguish of a split second at sunrise
and at sunset when they can almost touch...but not. Always together, eternally
apart.  And as long as they both shall live. I am sorrow. -- from the movie

----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of Jonah Winters
Sent: 	Thursday, 08 February, 1996 22:46 PM
To: 	Hannah E. Reinstein
Cc: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	Two (?) Genders

Dear Hannah et al.,
When it comes to discussing human behaviours and
self-understandings, be they learned or inherent, I understand the
possibility of there being a gender spectrum.  But how would you relate
this with a notion of duality such as the Taoist in which relatively
clear-cut dualisms are both the fabric of the universe and as well the
motive force behind creation, change, and dissolution?
Or, is it perhaps improper and misleading for me to try to
approach a subject based on internal experience with a
philosophico-analytical analysis of ontology?
If it is off-base to discuss such an experiential awareness of
gender philosophically, then that sure undercuts the standard write-off
response we Baha'is give when we explain to non-Baha'is why homosexuality
is "against nature" according to the writings (Aqdas p. 223), doesn't it?

Randomly, -Jonah

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Jonah and Kari Winters
33 Endean Avenue / Toronto, Ontario / M4M-1W5 / (416) 461-3527

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 04:51:49 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
Subject: RE: talking in the dark

I think that you understand the subject of gender perfectly.

Hannah
----------
My most simplest thoughts on the gender issue is this. There are only
human qualities. These qualities can be expressed through anyone
regardless of male and female.

Most of what we see in the world today in terms of male and female
identification is a result of cultural environment. Religion has
tremendous influence in this area as well.

love,
quanta

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 00:03:44 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels

Richard C. Logan,

> "I know another edition is of Mr. Fozdar book is about to come out,
If you believe his book is of such a nature perhaps you would like me
to supply you with his address and phone number.  I'm a personal friend
of  his and perhaps you would like to make these charges to his face,
rather than fouling the air on Talisman with backbitting." <

It doesn't take much in going through Fozdar's present books to see that
they are at best incompetent. A very basic example is that in both books
each there is over 20 examples of Fozdar passing off material as
Buddhist texts that clearly are not, and there is no way one could explain
this away as an honest mistake.

I would say this to his face, but why don't you get him online, either
directly or indirectly. Confronting Fozdar with his failings would better
be served by a written exchange, allowing each to carefully formulate
his statement and response. And I can't of a better forum that Talisman.

Bruce

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Sat, 10 Feb 1996 01:10:46 EST
Subject:       seasons

There is another season
upon us very soon,
with all its beauty
in full bloom.

May all the hearts
and minds connect,
in cyberspace via internet.
This is what God hath meant,
when He allowed us to have it.
************
At times I wonder if this swift connection is a replacement of what we
lost that which was naturally within the soul. The holographic
spiritual connection. The true vision which is lost. Then only to be
restored by machines. Should I be joyous, or should I weep? I don't
really know. Yes! it is wonderful to hear, to see the faces and
sounds of people all over the world. But, if I know One, truly know
One, then I would have known them all. God, forgive my ignorance.

lovingly,
quanta

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 01:17:38 -0500 (EST)
From: Cheshmak A Farhoumand
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear friends, a friend and i are looking for the source of a powerful
quote of Baha'u'llah's which is on the first page of "The Proofs of
Baha'u'llah's Mission". It is the only verse in the whole book which is
not footnoted. It reads: "God is My witness, O people! i am come to you
with a Revelation from teh Lord, your God, the Lord of your fathers of
old. Look not, O people at the things ye possess. Look rather at the
things God hath sent down unto you. THis, surely will be better for you
than the whole of creation ...What would it profit man, if he were to
fail to recognize the revelation of God? ...If thou deniest Me, by what
proof canst thou vindicate the truth of theat which thou dost possess?

Cheshmak

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 01:23:39 -0500 (EST)
From: Cheshmak A Farhoumand
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear friends, can someone please confirm something for me? When the
Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) passed away, it is said that Hazrat-i-Fatima was so
distressed that the angel Gabriel appeared to her and revealed words of
comfort. It was thougth that those words will become known to man with
the return of the Manifestation of God ( i think i read all this in God
Passes By, and i remember hearing it in Baha'i class). Then i remember
reading that Baha'u'llah has explained that The Hidden Words are those
words revealed by the angel Gabriel to Hazrat-i-Fatima.

Can someone please elaborate on this most fantastic and interesting point

Greatly appreciated.

Cheshmak Farhoumand

=END=

From: Dave10018@aol.com
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 01:41:34 -0500
To: TLCULHANE@aol.com, talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Islam & ethnocentrism

Well said,Terry!

of course, this notion of "newness" in religion or art or anything involving
any sort of human language runs into all sorts of logical difficulties if
posited as an absolute. for instance, a "new" message in a "new" language, if
such a description were taken to be absolute, could by definition be
comprehensible to exactly no one!  the reason for art as for religion is that
"old" truths must continually find fresh embodiments.

lots of good stuff on talisman these days!  I know i am way behind on the
threads i've been trying to comment on  and new threads have developed very
close to my heart. i will be dreaming of bosch while i beg in boston.

catching up on old posts,

dave t.

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 02:25:51 -0500 (EST)
From: Jonah Winters
To: Cheshmak A Farhoumand
Cc: talisman
Subject: HW / Book of Fatimah

Dear Cheshmak,
I'm afraid that I can't take the time at the moment to track down all
the relevant quotes and citations. I'm sure that others will do so. For
now, let me summarize: Academic consensus, and even much "partisan" Shi'i
consensus (e.g. Tabataba'i and Husain Jafri), is that this text is
mythical.  'Abdu'l-Baha, too, admits that it did not really exist. But, as
a myth, it was well-known that Gabriel delivered words of consolation
to Fatimah. There is actually a fascinating variety of definitions of this
"book," some sources saying that the Book of Fatimah was a short
collection of aphorisms, others that it was the entire "Imami" Quran of
17,000 verses (2 1/2 times the length of the Quran!). Its fame thus
resided, not in its real existence (it was occulted in 874 with the
Greater Occultation and ceased to exist on the earth), but in what I guess
we could call a trope of the existence of esoteric knowledge. So by calling
His book "The Hidden Words,"  Baha'u'llah was using a title instantluy
familiar to Shi'is.

**	Also, and this hasn't been explored yet in our discussions: Only
the Qa'im will have the hidden texts. For Baha'is, only the Bab was the
Qa'im. So what is Baha'u'llah doing with the Qa'im's books ???   **

I do hope that others provide specific sources so that I don't
have to! :-) In the meantime, let me list three works that do discuss the
Book of Fatimah. First, Diana Malouf examines in considerable detail
possible historical precedents (or lack thereof) of the Hidden Words in
her dissertation on "Tranlsation Norms of the Hidden Words..." Write to me
privately if you want info on how to get this book. Two, a book was
released in 1994 called _The Divine Guide in Early Shi'ism_ by
Amir-Moezzi. This is, to my knowledge, the most complete discussion
available in English on the topic of early esoteric Shi'i texts, their
content, and their historicity. Third, if you want still more sources, I
did a paper on the "Shi'i Quran" and could send you my bibliography. Many
articles discuss the Book of Fatimah.

Sincerely, Jonah

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Jonah and Kari Winters
33 Endean Avenue / Toronto, Ontario / M4M-1W5 / (416) 461-3527

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 01:09 PST
To: Jonah Winters
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: HW / Book of Fatimah
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>
>**	Also, and this hasn't been explored yet in our discussions: Only
>the Qa'im will have the hidden texts. For Baha'is, only the Bab was the
>Qa'im. So what is Baha'u'llah doing with the Qa'im's books ???   **
>
All books are His. Baha'u'llah is the Bab and the Bab is Baha'u'llah.

Burl

PS: I am the Walrus.

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 14:17:14 +0100 (MET)
Subject: hope
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Talismanians
I am going - very uncharacteristically - to cite the message I am responding
to because it is SO good and SO important that everyone should read it
twice:

> Hope is grounded in the act of *Remembrance* and not forgetfulness.
> Hope says to those wronged ones we know and have not forgotten  and it says
> to those wrong doers we know  and will not forget .  And it says to both we
> still believe - we still have Faith .  Hope says come let us build a
> community in which "Force is the servant of justice " , in which
> administration is the servant of community and a community which is grounded
> in the worship - the love and justice - of the One True God .
>
>  warmest regards and love ,
>      Terry
>

enough said

Sen
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sen McGlinn                           ph: 31-43-3216854
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, 10 Feb 1996 14:17:55 +0100 (MET)
Subject: rights and beyond
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Richard,
rights may not be sufficient to create a more truly human society,
but they may be a pre-requisite. Is there not an analogy with
international law? - on the one hand the fundamental basis for
world order is to be shifted from national sovereignty to the
principle of the oneness of humanity, and on the other hand there
is a principle of collective security to punish aggressors.
Disarmament is encouraged, but unilateral disarmament would be
foolish. Citizen's rights, and our rights as members of the Baha'i
community are analogous: we hope that hearts will be
transformed to the point that legal rights need never be
summoned up because we will be functioning on the level of
inter-personal relational justice. But legal rights remain as a more
basic, and more fundamental safeguard, just as the option of
punitive war to restrain the aggressor cannot be set aside. It
would be the hight of foolishness to imagine, however far-going
the spiritual transformation of the world may be, that no persons
or no individuals will ever refuse to engage in the intimate and
selfless dialogue which is required for relational justice.

In any case, I rather think we are stuck with rights:
The heavenly Jerusalem is none other than divine
civilization, and it is now ready.  It is to be and shall be
organized, and the oneness of humankind will be a visible
fact.  Humanity will then be brought together as one.
The various religions will be united, and different races
will be known as one kind.  The Orient and Occident will
be conjoined, and the banner of international peace will
be unfurled.  The world shall at last find peace, and the
equalities and rights of men shall be established.
Promulgation of Universal Peace p 102

to paraphrase an influential source,
human rights are not only necessary but inevitable.

Sen

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sen McGlinn                           ph: 31-43-3216854
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, 10 Feb 1996 14:18:35 +0100 (MET)
Subject: buddhis debates
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Jack,
I am not interested in following the Buddhism debates in detail,
simply because I decided to concentrate on understanding the
middle-eastern religious traditions: one has to measure one's own
limited capacities and not try to embrace the whole ocean in a
thimble. But, so long as the subject line shows clearly what is
being discussed, I am not obliged to follow the discussion just
because it is on Talisman. The discussion would appear to be
bearing fruits in terms of your own understanding, and that is a
necessary starting point.
BTW - in simple terms for the non-expert - is Fozdar's
book really terrible? I had a brief look at it once, and didn't buy
because it had the 'look-and-feel' of quakery. It gave the
impression in fact that the author might not be too bright, but
this could also be because it doesn't follow the forms of western
expect arguments to be couched. How would you rate it for
content, imagining that you are a publisher's referree asked to
give an opinion?

Sen

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sen McGlinn                           ph: 31-43-3216854
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, 10 Feb 1996 14:35:50 +0100 (MET)
Subject: lights of guidance quote
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Can someone who has lights of guidance look up for me
a letter from the Guardian or a secretary to the effect
that dancing is not appropriate in the Hazirat'ul-Quds,
and type it up? I'm working on a compilation of the 'dancing'

thanks
Sen

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 14:54:01 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
Subject: RE: seasons

Quanta wrote:

"At times I wonder if this swift connection is a replacement of what we
lost that which was naturally within the soul. The holographic
spiritual connection. The true vision which is lost. Then only to be
restored by machines. Should I be joyous, or should I weep?

I love email. At work my colleagues and I rely on it heavily. It's faster than
paper and, if done well, is very effective for communicating intellectually.
Talisman, for example, has several email gurus. Those are the gifted people
whose messages are so well-written, clear, and effective that we marvel at
them even if we disagree with their content. That's the bright side of
cyberspace.

Yesterday I received an email at work that read only: "Free for lunch in 30
mins? Sched+ me. S." The person who sent me the message was across the hall.
She's a dear friend and wasn't even particularly busy at the time. Thanks to
our network technology, it arrived less than a minute after she sent it. What
she did is an accepted custom. But consider this vignette. It hints at a dark
side of what we've accomplished with technology. Cyberspace offers so much
more used to a dehumanizing lack of eye contact, voice inflection, and touch.
It may be swift but it isn't a true connection. It's a world of the
half-light. It isn't good enough. It isn't warm. How soon will the cruel
visions of Gibson's Mona Lisa Overdrive and Neuromancer reveal themselves not
as fiction but as prophecy? And frighteningly accurate ones at that.

And what about cyberspace chat and IRC? It's where the alienated and the sad
go because no one in real life will hug them any more. It's a world of
separation. We are not writing glowing runes on the screen. No. It's
impersonal graffiti on the human heart. It's spiritual and emotional
vandalism. Once I surfed on AOL and Compuserve because I had no real life any
more. I found a landscape with way too many predators and pretenders. It was
an image of Hell. Anyone who has ever been on AOL can confirm this by simply
looking at the names of the member rooms. It's repellent for the most part.
It's the Times Square, the San Francisco Tenderloin district, the spiritual
Bowery, the very end of the earth, Bradbury's Abyss, Gibson's Sprawl. It's the
NYC Union Square where crazy people without faces carry their end of the world
signs.

Acckk! What ever got me started on this negativity? I'll be good now. 'nite.

Hannah
-------------------------------
She travels by night, the sun is her moon.  A creature without memory of the
half life of human existence. Only the anguish of a split second at sunrise
and at sunset when they can almost touch...but not. Always together, eternally
apart.  And as long as they both shall live. I am sorrow.

**************************
Buy the WINDOWS NT RESOURCE KIT an inspiring part of which was written by our
very own Hannah Reinstein (under her old name).
gripping
drama of TCP/IP parameters, network performance tuning, and net server
installation
will hold you breathless with excitement and suspense until the very end. DO
IT NOW!

***************************

----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT
Sent: 	Friday, 09 February, 1996 22:10 PM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	seasons

There is another season
upon us very soon,
with all its beauty
in full bloom.

May all the hearts
and minds connect,
in cyberspace via internet.
This is what God hath meant,
when He allowed us to have it.
************
I don't
really know. Yes! it is wonderful to hear, to see the faces and
sounds of people all over the world. But, if I know One, truly know
One, then I would have known them all. God, forgive my ignorance.

lovingly,
quanta

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 09:04:05 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re:  Dialog, Argument ect.
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Talisman"

Dear Bruce,

You evidently don't see the point!

One doesn't condemn another in their absence.  Charges of plagarism
against Mr. Fozdar raise the level of harm you are doing.  I'm in no
position to defend a longtime friend from these accusations.  But what
truely puzzles me is the cavalier manner in which you destroy another's
reputation  and honor as a person.  I understand you call yourself a
Baha'i--but even if you don't you could have still properly critiqued his
work with the same effectiveness without mudslinging.

Mr. Fozdar, like many in his age group, is not sophisticated in the area
of telecommunications or computers for that matter, as such he would be
unable to answer these charges online or even to be aware of them unless
I bring them to his attention.  My heart sinks at the though and I will
not do it.  If you want to write or call him I would be will to assist
you and nothing more.

Perhaps you feel it is the proper thing, in the context of our uncivil
society to attack anothers character, in front of hundreds of list
members--but I ask you as a personal favor and a  brother not to do this.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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, 10 Feb 1996 10:04:47 -0500 (EST)
From: jwalbrid
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Ayyam-i-Ha

Dariush Lamie asked that I post the article written for the Baha'i
Encyclopedia about Ayyam-i-Ha.  I am happy to do so, although it is not
terribly long.

john walbridge

*******

Ayya'm-i-Ha': The Intercalary Days

The Ayya'm-i-Ha', literally `the days of H', are the four or five
intercalary days inserted before the last month of the Baha''i' calendar.
Since the nineteen months of nineteen days in the Badi'` calendar would
yield a year four and a quarter days shorter than the solar year, some
additional days are needed to complete the solar year of 365 or 366 days.
The Ba'b did not specify where the additional days were to be placed. In
the Kita'b-i-Aqdas Baha''u'lla'h instructed that they be celebrated
before the month of `Ala'', the last month of the Baha''i' year and the
month of fasting, and that they not be included within any month. He
further specified that they during the Ayya'm-i-Ha' the Baha''i's should
`provide good cheer for themselves, their kindred and, beyond them, the
poor and needy, and with joy and exultation to hail and glorify their
Lord, to sing His praise and magnify His Name' (KA, para. 16). The
Ayya'm-i-Ha' are thus celebrated with parties, meetings, dinners,
gift-giving, as well as giving to charity, `good deeds' and the like.
There is a specific prayer for the Ayya'm-i-Ha'.
The numerical value of the letter ha' or `H' is five, so the term
may literally mean `the five days'. Ha' is also an abbreviation of huva,
Arabic for `He', referring to God. Thus Baha''u'lla'h refers to these
days as `manifestations of Ha'' -- i.e. sacred days. Finally, Ha' is
associated with the names of both the Ba'b and Baha''u'lla'h -- ba'b
having a numerical value of five and ba' and ha' being the root letters
of Baha'.

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Fri,  9 Feb 96 18:16:54 PST
Subject: Re: FWD>Response to E-mail rec.
To: Dan Orey , talisman@indiana.edu,
QUANTA DAWNLIGHT , 748-9178@mcimail.com

On Fri, 9 Feb 1996 16:47:49 EST  QUANTA DAWNLIGHT wrote:
>Dear Dan,

A heterosexual person has a choice to be celibate,
>but homosexual one does not. This bothered me alot when he and I
>spoke about it. So, when we speak of chastity for the heteros it is
>different in that they may get married and be recognized as a
couple.  Of course, they will never become Baha'is.

This is such a vexing issue.  I declared my faith as a Baha'i knowing
full well my profound discomfort with this issue and I said to
myself, "thank God, I don't have to deal with this one. This one
doesn't touch me."  And now, the more I start caring about the
condition of people in the world, the more this one hurts.

I am grateful to those of you he keep bringing it up.

Quanta, I am surprised to hear you join in. Not that I had any ideas
about it or you in relationship to this topic before. Just that your
voice enriches the harmonies for me.

I guess I'd like to add my confusion to the discussion. I haven't
tried to sort this out in a while.

I am an AIDS volunteer, these days. I've always liked gay men.
Perhaps this is a comment on the homophobia of American society, but
I like men who have so much heart toward other men. I don't like the
eroticism, but I like the loving and the passion, a certain open
hearted quality that I don't find readily available elsewhere. --
Although I am finding it in certain men's gatherings. There is
something very warming about connecting with other men because and
only because we are men and therefore there must be SOMETHING that we
share. Again, this may be an American Guy Thing.

But back to my other point. There really is something about the
eroticism that I'm not comfortable with. I'm thinking about the
erotic posters on the walls of my friends' apartments and offices,
and the general quality of the graphics. It may be that it feels to
like a kind of high taste pornography. Although this sentence only
begs the question.

Maybe it is a frustration that women must feel sometimes toward men.
It's as though I want to be able to love men really intensely,
easily, passionately and even physically without it being sexual and
without having to put out a lot of energy marking boundaries.

I can't get it much clearer than this at this time. I'd love to hear
feedback on this comment. For me this emergeance of sexuality in a
way that interferes with love is the only thing that I myself can
directly observe that comes close to me seeing what the Guardian saw
when he clearly declared homosexual activities as .... as... what
word to use?  A mild one: "not allowed."

So. Those of you who say that this position taken by the Guardian is
Truth, let me ask you. What do you see in your heart that supports
it. I've tried to answer from my heart.

Philip

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/09/96
Time: 18:16:54

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 10:56:23 EST

This morning the sky is Carolina blue. The grass is showing off its
chlorophyl to the sun. "Come on now, we got work to do. The
Spring is upon us and I got to photosynthesize. Oh! thank goodness
for the snow and ice, for they killed off all the bugs. The water
helped to soak deep down the soil all the nutrients, for my
roots to pick them up and send up to the leaves, via the stems
through and thorough."

I looked at the branches of the crabbapple tree in the front yard.
There are these little buds waiting to come through. I am amazed
how all this happens after all that ice and snow.
There is a book about multiple stresses on plants. It talks about
how they survive. I must read it again. Life is beautiful.

quanta

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 10:10:37 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: rights and beyond
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: , "Talisman"

>rights may not be sufficient to create a more truly human society,
>but they may be a pre-requisite.

I do agree with you, although, I prefer the word "process" in a
teleological sense to explain where we are going in a "truly human
society". But what I have been writing about is what I consider to be an
excessive concern with "rights" which I feel will not get us where we
want to ultimately go.  It is very hard to express this in a context that
everyone can understand because all have a different take on how
rights--or really--the unspoken problem--the LACK of rights effects them.
What I am saying is that for the Baha'i in this dispensation injustice
is not bad per se since the edge of persons character and perceptions can
be sharpened upon the blunt instrument of tyrannical behavior.  This I
blelieve is the purport of Baha'u'llah's characterization of the "Wronged
One".  I can't see how anyone could deny that the Master and also
Baha'u'llah overcame injustice on a daily basis by being true humans and
gaining the respect of their contempories.  This example is how we will
finally achieve justice.

When we treat each other with a HIGHER understanding the effects ripple
throughout the planet.  It seems to me that the main business of those
working outside of the Faith is to insure human rights for everyone, with
of course, the strongest encouragement of the Baha'i World Community; and
the main agenda of the Baha'is is to assist in the development of the
world order of Baha'u'llah by internalizing his teachings.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 11:20:07 EST
Subject: double messages

I am getting same messages twice. Is there any problem?

love,
quanta

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 12:13:32 EST
Subject: Re: FWD>Response to E-mail rec.

Dear Phillipp et all,

I just got this message and here is my impromptu reply.
When you say "Guardian" and "Truth" you are limiting the discussion.

I will respond only as a human being not as someone who has
registered their name under a certain religious group. So, do we have
an understanding that I am just anybody on this planet without any
label on my beliefs etc. at this moment? If so, here are my
struggling  thougths and feelings on the issue.

1) The pictures you speak about. I feel absolutely nauseated
to see the body parts of human beings displayed anywhere (for
pleasure? give me a break!!) I had to risk of losing my only parttime
job when I scolded a student for viewing
pornographic material in the lab on cyberspace. I asked him if this
was a class related project he said "no, it is for my pleasure" then,
I said, "you turn off that machine right now and go to your home for
about me and I was ready for a good fight in the whole system.
I am small statured, but can be very scary at times as I was told
This was a very heterosexual guy who harassed women by his pleasure.
But, he said nothing and left the room almost immediately. Cowards
only fight from behind the scenes. I have no idea what will happen.

2)The love between men/women - men/men -women/women
. I cannot relate to this at all.
I love people, just people. There are some men whom I love with whom I can
sleep in the same bed without thinking about sex. There are women
whom I love and sleep in the same bed without thinking about sex.
When I was in Adrionople last Fall I was visiting my cousin (three
years younger than I). She told her husband that she was going to
sleep with me while I was visiting as we did in childhood.
I have pictures and may post them on talisman later on. We have pictures
sleeping on the floor bed on a futon embraced like two little puppies.
When I show them to my American friends I feel their puzzling thoughts.
It is strange to me. I am labeled as a heterosexual female homosapien. So, what?

3)When I registered myself under a religious group I did not know all
the details of rules and regulations. I did not ask what they thought
of homosexuals, heterosexuals etc. etc. You say you knew what you got
into. Well, good for you. I was ignorant. All I knew was that here is
a religious group who believes in the unity of all people. They sang
beautiful songs. I was totally attracted to their displayed
diversity. First time I encountered a large group of them was in a little
town called Washington N.C. in 1971 a cold December night. I got
there after 3-4 hour drive with someone from the group. When I
entered the large room full of people I saw an old black man playing
the blues, a long bearded jewish fellow called "the dancing bear"
dancing to the tunes. I cried. I was so touched with this picture.
I read some books. But, books don't tell me much, people do.
I know, I am not supposed to be influenced by people, but the by the
Word. So, I am human. People do influence my feelings. I would not
have signed the card, if I had bad feelings as a result of people.

4)About homosexual marriage. There are times, I feel the current
fight for homosexual rights is the reminder of "true liberty is the sign
of the animal". But, then again, isn't heterosexual rights the same
way? Why can they  have rights  to be together and
homosexuals can't? Why should I be imposed to see heterosexual
behaviors publicly without the same type of protest railed against
the homosexuals? Aren't heteros being animal like too?
So, it boils down to the phrase, "we are all spiritual beings in human
bodies struggling to be divine". Frankly, until I die I will not know
what that means either. I get glimpses of it sometimes and wish I
could just sail on into the other worlds. But, I am a prisoner of my
heterosexual, female homosapien existence at this time.
That is my response from the heart.

love,
quanta

>So. Those of you who say that this position taken by the Guardian is
>Truth, let me ask you. What do you see in your heart that supports
>it. I've tried to answer from my heart.

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 11:47:16 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: hope
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: , "Talisman"

Dear Sen,

>> Hope is grounded in the act of *Remembrance* and not forgetfulness.
>> Hope says to those wronged ones we know and have not forgotten  and it says
>> to those wrong doers we know  and will not forget .  And it says to both we
>> still believe - we still have Faith .  Hope says come let us build a
>> community in which "Force is the servant of justice " , in which
>> administration is the servant of community and a community which is grounded
>> in the worship - the love and justice - of the One True God .
>>
>>  warmest regards and love ,
>>      Terry

>>

I know I have no place in this, and I have the greatest respect for a
person's sense of injustice, as such, I will treat with this only on an
abstract level.  I would argue neither positive nor negative.  Being a
Baha'i, IMHO, is a product of the *third*.   As Baha'is we cannot expect
the kind of world we want without embodying it within ourselves.  We may
think we are the good guys and others are the bad guys.  If we are, in
fact, the oppressed--then it behoves us to show forth those qualities
that will effect a change in the other.  This can never be accomplished
without *suffering*.  It has struck me for a long time, that this
(suffering) is the last thing my American co-religionists want to do (me
included of course).  If one trys to "arise and struggle" as the Master
has called for us to do, and open our hearts to those around us it
becomes so painful that we cannot bear it and we retreat from each other
in anger and hurt and then at the last--apathy.

I hear so much about the problems of the Baha'is and their administration
and I have said all of these things myself at one time or another.  But
it seems to me, what I am hearing is:  "I can't stand the pain!"  The
problem is we must, and whether we like it or not *Humanity* is going to
go through the pain of this "child birth" and the better we prepare for
it the less troubled it will be.

Of course,  I'm only a man, and although I have fathered three children
and been at my wifes side three times I cannot claim to grasp the
significance of such a pain.  But nevertheless, we are still partakers
and brothers and sister in pain.  IMHO, If we could only see pain as an
opportunity to set things aright--within ourselves and others we could
begin to actualize the teachings of Baha'u'llah.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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, 10 Feb 1996 12:33:15 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: "Richard C. Logan"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: rights and beyond

Richard:

I have never been able to understand statements by Baha'is (and we have
heard them more than once) that there is an "excessive" concern with
"rights" on Talisman.

First of all, people have *too few* rights, and the rights they have are
often stolen from them, all around the world.  The rights mentioned in
the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which has been endorsed by the
Universal House of Justice, are notable by their lack of implementation.
Bosnian Muslims shot down and buried in mass graves by Serbian thugs did
not have freedom of religion or conscience or speech.  The Baha'i who is
waiting on death row in Iran does not have his right to freedom of
religion and conscience and speech recognized by President Rafsanjani.
Over a billion Chinese labor under a repressive one-party state.  Ken
Saro-Wiwa was executed in Nigeria for protesting environmental pollution
by Nigerian and American petroleum concerns.  An Egyptian intellectual
has recently been ordered divorced from his wife because he announced
himself an agnostic and the judge took that as apostacy, requiring
annulment of his marriage to a Muslim woman.  Even in the United States,
workers' rights to organize unions or to go on strike without being
replaced by scabs have been seriously eroded.  Rights of indigenous
peoples in Brazil have been denied by big ranchers, and those who
protested have often been killed.

We all need *more* of an emphasis on human rights, not less.  If the
Baha'i Faith cannot offer the world's thirsty masses this essential
message, they will go elsewhere to find it.  Ironically, any keyword
search under "rights" in the major Baha'i scriptures (*especially the
writings of `Abdu'l-Baha) turns up enormous numbers of passages on the
goodness, need for and enumeration of human rights.  But for some reason
the mainstream Baha'i "political culture" tends to ignore these passages.

Baha'is have a lot of internal housekeeping to do before we are in a
position, as a community, to stand for human rights worldwide.  As far as I
can tell, Baha'is have almost no rights within the structure of current
uncodified, so that the fiat of a Baha'i institution often passes for
"law."  One member of the current NSA of the US in particular appears to
relish brandishing the threat or reality of withdrawal of administrative
rights for so much as looking at him cross-eyed. While I respect the NSA
and invest a great deal of hope and thanks in many of its activities, I
do not respect this individual, whom I consider a major embarrassment to
the Faith, and I pray every spring the friends will finally have the good
sense to turn him out of office.  Partially because of such individuals,
Baha'is' freedom of speech and conscience is highly curtailed, and you at
one point even seemed to deny the saliency of individual conscience.
Current Baha'i practices are not a "higher stage" *beyond* liberal rights;
they are a primitive stage in the evolution of the Faith in which we have
not yet achieved the rights guaranteed Baha'is by their own scriptures.
(We could start by reading *Secret of Divine Civilization* more often
than inevitably incomplete compilations such as *Lights of Guidance*.
Having a Baha'i bill of rights adopted into NSA by-laws, and having a
written-down legal code that defines what acts are prosecutable, would
both be rather useful).

I wish you would put your considerable intelligence, warm-heartedness and
devotion at the service of improving the human rights situation inside
the Faith and outside it, rather than always saying
illiberal things that bolster the (highly unsatisfactory) status quo.

cheers   Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 12:59:17 EST
Subject: (Fwd) Re: dietary + experiences

I am forwarding a post which I shared with one individual on
talisman. The person asked if I had to spend more \$ on food etc.

Hello there...,

No, I spent less. But, economizing has alot to do with personal
effort and local conditions. We are blessed in this area with plenty
fresh fruits and vegetables.  I often buy them at reduced prices.
I am an avid spend-thrift shopper. I also ate only one meal a day.
In between I munch on an apple, carrot etc. I did not count calories.
I am only 4'9" inches tall and weigh about 115 lbs. used to be only
95. So, I don't require as much to keep alive. I kept thinking that
I was eating to be alive and not to be entertained by food.

I made a note on my refrigerator with bold and large letters
MY STOMACH IS NOT A TOXIC WASTE DUMP
NOR, AN ANIMAL GRAVE YARD!
The issue is to change one's attitude towards what we eat. When you
are convinced that somethings are poisonous, you can't touch them.
Essentially, I thought of myself as a flower.  I need water,
fresh air and good nutrients in proper amounts. I only ate when
I was really hungry. My view was that I needed food to keep my
cells alive and to keep my temperature at 98.6. Now, if I were a
stove would I stuff it with wood and set it on fire? No! it will
blow up with combustion. So, I said, I will put enough food
to keep my body at a certain temp. See! it was just a way of
trying to convince my brain first with all sorts of rationalization
which may sound a bit odd at first, but it worked.
--On a few occasions I deliberately violated my own rules. Boy! did
I feel the consequences next morning with a bad taste in my mouth,
rapid heart beat, fatigue, pain in joints, confusion etc. etc. etc.

Every morning when I got up, I drank a warm (room temp) glass of
water with a few drops of fresh lemon/lime juice. This is an Eastern
custom by the way. To clean up your system before putting anything in
it. We have so much treasure of knowledge from the diverse elements
in our communities.

Then, I jumped on the trampoline a little. I kept breathing slowly and at each
exhalation I
recited "bad thoughts out" and at inhalation "good thoughts in".
I hope this impromptu response helps to get the ideas across.
I wish you and your loved ones a good health. Please check out
some books from the library on these subjects. They helped me.

love,
quanta

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 13:06:22 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: anatomy of antiliberalism

I continue with my precis of Stephen Holmes' *Anatomy of Antiliberalism.*

After de Maistre, he treats Carl Schmitt, a prominent German intellectual
whose work began being influential in the 1920s during the Weimar
Republic in the wake of the end of the German monarchy.

Schmitt attacked parliamentary government as overly indecisive and prone
to grant concessions to enemies.  He declared the Weimar constitution a
capitulation to foreing influence.  It was, he said, "a standard-issue
English suit."  [Compare Baha'u'llah's 1891 declaration in the Tablet of
the World that the best form of government is that of the people in London].

Schmitt argued that autocratic state power is good and necessary because
it can impose internal peace on a society that would otherwise fall into
intractable disputes between irreconcilable enemies.

He rejected the liberal belief that social conflicts could be moderated
and worked out peaceably.  Liberals, he said, see conflicts as 1)
conflicts of interest, 2) conflicts of ideas, and 3) conflicts of
ultimate values.  The liberal resolution of these conflicts is as
follows:  You solve conflicts of interest with compromise and negotion;
you solve conflicts of ideas by rational discussion; and you solve
conflicts of ultimate values by privatizing religion.  [I think all these
"liberal" approaches to conflict resolution are in fact compatible with
the Baha'i faith, but Schmitt rejects them all].  Schmitt insists that
this account is naive and that liberal techniques cannot deal with truly
intractable ethnic and other conflict.

He attacks peace and pacifism as the values of bourgeois shopkeepers,
values that might prevent Germany from ever getting a fair deal in the
international arena.

He severely critiques individualism.  He was also concerned about moral
flabbiness; he worried about "the general economization of spiritual
life," and about the disappearance of earnestness, decisiveness and manly
honor.  He valued "order" highly, as well as national pride, manly
triumph over moral weakness, and a sense of the seriousness of human
existence.  Liberals, he complained, had weakened their government to
protect individual goods such as private property.

Liberals, he said, placed too much confidence in the rule of law, the
free market, and the inevitable triumph of truth in open discussion.
Sometimes, he argued, one needs a strong leader who can make a snap
decision decisively.  [What Schmitt overlooks is that absolute rulers
often make *foolish* snap decisions;  the Young Turk officers took the
Ottoman Empire into war against Britain, France and Russia in WW I on the
side of the Germans, which destroyed the empire and left its people in
colonial bondage; Hitler opened up a second front during WW II with the
Soviet Union.  Duh.]

Schmitt says true democracy should lie in the psychological
identification of the ruled with their rulers.  Democracy, he says, has
no need of competitive elections.  The secret ballot destroys the
emotional unity characteristic of true "democratic" government.
*Opposition, dissent, party competition, distrust of public officials,
voluntary citizen groups organized around political issues, a free press
critical of government policy, and protests by outvoted minorities are
all liberal and *undemocratic.*  He declares in the 20s that therefore
fascist Italy and bolshevik Russia are actually more truly democratic
than are liberal regimes, insofar as they achieved an emotional fusion of
rulers and the ruled.  Liberal consititutionalism, with its "banal"
separation of powers, aimed to rule out such a fusion.

Schmitt in the 1930s began to identify the sources of the liberalism that
was in his view weakening Germany as the German Jewish community.

By the mid-1930s and through the War, Schmitt became a Nazi.
Coincidence?  I don't think so.  This is where antiliberalism ultimately

cheers   Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 14:00:08 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: George A Gary
Subject: RE: Digging the Buddha

p 234 Kitab-i-Aqdas NOtes: quotes shoghi Effendi as saying that
Baha'u'llah is to the Hindus the reincarnation of Krishna; to the Buddhists
the fifth Buddha."

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 12:48:44 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: rights and beyond
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Juan Cole"
Cc: "Talisman"

>I have never been able to understand statements by Baha'is (and we have
>heard them more than once) that there is an "excessive" concern with
>"rights" on Talisman.

Dear Juan,

What do you have to gain by this sophistry?

Normally I would refrain from answering in this fashion--but you seem =
to have the need to be "so right" and the other "so wrong" that you =
misconstrue and exaggerate, like a typical politician, everything the =
other is saying.  Get off your soap box unless your running for =
office!  I have truly grown weary of this.  Petulant is the word I =
would use for this type of discourse.  You act as if I was never =
aware of injustice in the world!  You have simply abandoned any sense =
"braininess" just calm down.  I have said what it is I can say.  If =
you have no interest in the "transformative" process of the Baha'i =
faith that is up to you.  However,  I feel it is an important topic =
that has a bearing on the things you want to talk about.  So you =
disagree.  I accept that.  Do you?  All I ever meant by an excessive =
emphasis on rights was its (rights) euphemistic usage as a covert =
criticism of the institutions and the accusation that Baha=B9is are =
not concerned with human rights.  I take it as a given that every =
Baha=B9i is intimately concerned with that issue, and I take personal =
umbrage at the suggestion that any of us on this list are not so =
concerned.

I can even anticipate your thoughts.  Next you will say--"I have hurt =
your feeling so that is why you are now replying so"--and the =
implication is:  "there was little merit in your response."  Nothing =
could be further from the truth.  I'm simply concerned about you and =
all Baha'is and everyone on this planet.  I really think it =
ridiculous on your part that I or any other Baha'i should have take a =
back seat to you as a *Humanist*.  Are we in a contest to see who is =
more concerned about the masses?  At this point I can see no other =
motive on your part that would justify this outburst of unexplainable =
indignation.  I guess I must have touched in you a nerve that is raw =
and has been raw for some time.  I am not responsible for whatever it =
is that has made you so bitter.  At least I cannot share a major =
portion of the burden.  The Master spent decades in prison--suffered =
the most hideous indignities--and recommended all the things I have =
presented.  I have never denied any of the liberal aspects of the =
Faith.  I simply gave every Baha'i credit for understanding these =
things in the first place.  You apparently do not.  Apparently, you =
think, you really know about these things and others do not. You to =
my knowledge have experienced a slight fraction of the sufferings of =
the Master,  but feel compelled to teach us about the suffering of =
the people of this world.

Why don't you try to meet my ideas head on as I have done with yours, =
instead of resorting to demagoguery and bombast.  It is really =
unworthy of a man of your obvious culture and intelligence.  I am not =
in a competition here I'm in a consultation. So I would ask you in =
the future--and NOT "for my sake" but for everyone else's to try and =

>I have never been able to understand statements by Baha'is (and we have
>heard them more than once) that there is an "excessive" concern with
>"rights" on Talisman.
>
>First of all, people have *too few* rights, and the rights they have are
>often stolen from them, all around the world.  The rights mentioned in
>the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which has been endorsed by the
>Universal House of Justice, are notable by their lack of implementation.
>Bosnian Muslims shot down and buried in mass graves by Serbian thugs did
>not have freedom of religion or conscience or speech.  The Baha'i who is
>waiting on death row in Iran does not have his right to freedom of
>religion and conscience and speech recognized by President Rafsanjani.
>Over a billion Chinese labor under a repressive one-party state.  Ken
>Saro-Wiwa was executed in Nigeria for protesting environmental pollution
>by Nigerian and American petroleum concerns.  An Egyptian intellectual
>has recently been ordered divorced from his wife because he announced
>himself an agnostic and the judge took that as apostacy, requiring
>annulment of his marriage to a Muslim woman.  Even in the United States,
>workers' rights to organize unions or to go on strike without being
>replaced by scabs have been seriously eroded.  Rights of indigenous
>peoples in Brazil have been denied by big ranchers, and those who
>protested have often been killed.
>
>We all need *more* of an emphasis on human rights, not less.  If the
>Baha'i Faith cannot offer the world's thirsty masses this essential
>message, they will go elsewhere to find it.  Ironically, any keyword
>search under "rights" in the major Baha'i scriptures (*especially the
>writings of `Abdu'l-Baha) turns up enormous numbers of passages on the
>goodness, need for and enumeration of human rights.  But for some reason
>the mainstream Baha'i "political culture" tends to ignore these passages.
>
>Baha'is have a lot of internal housekeeping to do before we are in a
>position, as a community, to stand for human rights worldwide.  As far as =
I
>can tell, Baha'is have almost no rights within the structure of current
>uncodified, so that the fiat of a Baha'i institution often passes for
>"law."  One member of the current NSA of the US in particular appears to
>relish brandishing the threat or reality of withdrawal of administrative
>rights for so much as looking at him cross-eyed. While I respect the NSA
>and invest a great deal of hope and thanks in many of its activities, I
>do not respect this individual, whom I consider a major embarrassment to
>the Faith, and I pray every spring the friends will finally have the good
>sense to turn him out of office.  Partially because of such individuals,
>Baha'is' freedom of speech and conscience is highly curtailed, and you at
>one point even seemed to deny the saliency of individual conscience.
>Current Baha'i practices are not a "higher stage" *beyond* liberal =
rights;
>they are a primitive stage in the evolution of the Faith in which we have
>not yet achieved the rights guaranteed Baha'is by their own scriptures.
>(We could start by reading *Secret of Divine Civilization* more often
>than inevitably incomplete compilations such as *Lights of Guidance*.
>Having a Baha'i bill of rights adopted into NSA by-laws, and having a
>written-down legal code that defines what acts are prosecutable, would
>both be rather useful).
>
>I wish you would put your considerable intelligence, warm-heartedness and
>devotion at the service of improving the human rights situation inside
>the Faith and outside it, rather than always saying
>illiberal things that bolster the (highly unsatisfactory) status quo.
>
>
>cheers   Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan
>

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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, 10 Feb 1996 12:51:21 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re:  Dialog, Argument ect.

Richard C. Logan,

> "Perhaps you feel it is the proper thing, in the context of our uncivil
society to attack anothers character, in front of hundreds of list
members--but I ask you as a personal favor and a  brother not to do
this." <

Proper thing to do? Which is really a question for you. Fozdar's book
is a very uncivil, aggressive effort that disparages Buddhism and its
followers:

"the knowledge and practice of His [the Buddha's] Dharma have indeed
disappeared from the lives of His followers"

there is no longer "any true reverence or honor accorded to His Dharma
through pure and stainless deeds."

the Dharma is "overlain with the brambles of superstitious rites, narrow
Dharma's true aim"

"empty chantings and yellow robes linger on, the spirit is no more."

and on and on and on. Shall I quote more? Who is Fozdar? He
obviously does not know the relevant Buddhist languages. A primary
source he uses is an out of date and highly colored anthology written
1894, which is a totally inappropriate source for any serious study of
Buddhism. His exegesis can only be called inventive, ignoring anything
contrary to his point, ignoring the classical understandings of the
technical terminology, and in one very important passage, he ignores the
grammatical structure of the sentence in question. Here is a man who
not knowing either Pali or Sanskrit, without acknowledgement, changes
translations of texts made by others. I already mention his passing off
as Buddhist texts that which clearly is not Buddhist texts.

As for plagiarism, albeit the scope is quite minor, particularly in
comparison to his other sins, it is nonetheless there. On page 240 of
BMA Fozdar has four footnotes. Fozdar's footnote 3 is verbatim the
footnote 7 on page of 47 of Edward Conze's BUDDHIST TEXTS
THROUGH THE AGES. Fozdar's footnote 4 reads:

"These offenses (parajika) which are four for monks and eight for nuns
constitute the first and most important class of offenses. For monks they
are offenses of chastity, stealing, murder and lying as regards their own
mental and spiritual prowesses. The penalty for any of these offenses is
expulsion from the Samgha with no possibility of reinstatement."

Footnote 8 in Conze's book reads:

"These parajika offenses (four for monks, eight for nuns) constitute the
first and most important class of offenses. For monks they are offenses
of unchastity, stealing, murder and lying in the particular sense of
claiming to have advanced further in mental and spiritual attainment than
is really so. The penalty for committing any of these offenses is
expulsion from the Order with no possibility of reordination."

The first thing that comes to notice is that I did not know chastity could
be an offence, but these footnotes are not the only place that Fozdar
should have cited his source, but did not.

> "But what truely puzzles me is the cavalier manner in which you
destroy another's reputation  and honor as a person." <

There is nothing cavalier in what I am doing. I take very seriously what
I see as an attack upon Buddhism. I have very carefully looked at the
arguments put forth, how they are structured and most importantly how
they are supported by the texts that Fozdar presses into service to further
his thesis. If Fozdar's honor and reputation are a concern, he should
have thought of that before he wrote what he did the they way he did.
What kind of honor is there in passing off as Buddhist texts material that
clearly isn't?

And rather than take my word for it, I can show how you can see this
for your self. Do you have Fozdar's GOD OF BUDDHA? And can you
get a copy of Paul Carus' GOSPEL OF THE BUDDHA? Carus' book
is still in print, and it is likely your public library has it. Let me know
when you get then I'll tell you what to look for. It is really quite
obvious.

> "If you want to write or call him" <

Writing is more appropriate.

> "One doesn't condemn another in their absence." <

I have to wait for Fozdar to be present before I can give a critique of his
work? I don't think so.

> "I understand you call yourself a Baha'i--but even if you don't you
could have still properly critiqued his work with the same effectiveness
without mudslinging." <

A Baha'i? Not in this lifetime. I have slung no mud. My criticisms have
been blunt, but I feel justifiably so, and there is nothing that I have said
that cannot be carefully backed up with careful analysis of Fozdar has
written.

I am sorry that this is upsetting for you, but Fozdar, quite frankly, has
put himself into this rather unfortunate position.

Bruce B

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 11:02 PST
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Maxwell

Just in case someone thinks I have negative feelings or thoughts about
Maxwell School -- I really don't.  My daughter, despite a few unpleasant
moments (what high school student doesn't have a few of those?) loved
Maxwell, met some wonderful people such as Sandy's daughter, Helen, who
remain her good and valued friends to this day.
As for the graduation event last year: My Jewish mother, Lutheran in-laws,
and fundamentalist niece all attended and all loved it! It was tasteful,
thoughtful, brilliantly produced, and a true joy.   More than anything,
Maxwell needs prayerful support and  financial endowments. As it is, they
seem to me to be compelled to take any kid, no matter what their
"condition", as long as the folks can write a check. So, they do get a few
troubled youth that they are not equiped to deal with -- but Maxwell was not
designed to replicate Father Flannigan's Boy's Town ("There is no such thing
as a bad Baha'i") but is simply a private school under the NSA of Canada
providing a decent education in a positive environment for kids of any race
or religion.  I only wish my daughter had four years of Maxwell instead of
only two.

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

From: KCentolell@aol.com
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 14:06:55 -0500
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Hello to Talisman

Dear Baha'i Friends,

As suggested in Maori etiquette,(am a new Talisman subscriber) and responding
with Hello and a brief history of my Baha'i family. I come from a family of 6
brothers and sisters (all but one Baha'is).  My mother (ruie Mullins) and I
live with my family (Ralph, Rachel & Matthew) in Aliso Viejo, California.  We
have been Baha'is for 26 years. My husband, Ralph, is a landscaper by
profession (Centolella Landscaping) and I spend most of my time raising the
family and coaching a Little League Girl's softball team.  My mom, is with us
temporarily, while working as a marketing and advertising/public relations
director for an event company in Southern California.  She is seriously
considering China as her next venue and if any of you have any thoughts, or
have been there as a pioneer or traveler, I know she would love to hear from
you.I guess that's about it...glad to be on the list.  Warmest Baha'i
greetings to everyone.

=END=

From: "Eric D. Pierce"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Sat, 10 Feb 1996 11:34:34 PST8PDT
Subject:       dis' the guests?/ Re:  Dialog, Argument ect.

Hi,

As I recall, Bruce Burrill is not a Baha'i. He investigated
the Faith many years ago, and has had various contacts with
Baha'is, and in recent years especially on the internet. He
is a Buddhist, and was INVITED AS A GUEST to talisman last
summer by Mark Foster to discuss Buddhist/Baha'i issues in
a manner that was hoped to be more in depth than on other
internet forums.

He is perfectly within his rights to critique Baha'i authors
who "do violence" to the theology of Bruce's religious tradition.

Is anyone else getting sick of the tit-for-tat personality BS
while they wait for the discussion to get substantial?

EP

> Date sent:      Sat, 10 Feb 1996 09:04:05 -0600 (CST)
> Subject:        Re:  Dialog, Argument ect.
> From:           "Richard C. Logan"
> To:             "Talisman"

> Dear Bruce,
>
> You evidently don't see the point!
>
> One doesn't condemn another in their absence.  Charges of plagarism
> against Mr. Fozdar raise the level of harm you are doing.  I'm in no
> position to defend a longtime friend from these accusations.  But what
> truely puzzles me is the cavalier manner in which you destroy another's
> reputation  and honor as a person.  I understand you call yourself a
> Baha'i--but even if you don't you could have still properly critiqued his
> work with the same effectiveness without mudslinging.
>

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 12:30:34 -0700 (MST)
From: "[G. Brent Poirier]"
To: Talisman
Subject: Sinaic Imagery

Let's see if I can be a bit milder.  Sen wrote:

erotic imagery, and I'm at a loss to understand what you are saying. You
say that you enjoyed the overall theme and content of the paper, so I
assume that you are not simply shocked at the idea that Baha'u'llah
employed erotic imagery . . . "

Brent responds:

I can see that I was not clear.  I certainly do not object to saying that
there is sexual imagery in the Baha'i writings.  One of the most important
passages in Shoghi Effendi's writings uses the image of "mystic
intercourse" (WOB 144) to convey an essential aspect of the authority of
the Administrative institutions founded in the Master's Will.  Nor did I
have a problem with the explanations regarding the veils, etc.  Much of
that discussion was based on summarized, but untranslated, portions of the
Tablet of the Deathless Youth.  However, this portion was actually
translated, thus giving it greater impact:

"When the gates of Paradise swung wide and the Holy Youth
came forth, Lo! in His hand was a serpent plain!  Rejoice!
This is the Deathless Youth, come with a gushing spring."

The imagery of the serpent and the spring were not further discussed;
however, the placement of these images provided an impact that I found
sickening.  Whatever other sexual or erotic imagery there may be in the
Text;  whatever sexual tension is in Sufi or Baha'i Writings; to present
this particular passage as erotic imagery does not do justice to the
Manifestation of God.

My *sole* intended objection was the inclusion of the passage quoted
sexual imagery.  Due to some last-minute editing and re-shuffling of the
order of my comments which I did, my posting seemed to intend a broader
objection to any reference whatever of the Tablet of the Deathless Youth
in an essay  on sexual imagery.  This was not my intention.

As you know, when Moses went up to the Mount and received the Ten
Commandments and returned to the Israelites, His face shone, so He wore a
veil in the presence of the people.  He removed the veil only in the
presence of God, on the mountain-top.  Baha'u'llah presents Himself as the
Voice of God, as the Burning Bush, as the One who Conversed with Moses.
The removal of the veil on the face of the Bab in this passage, seems to
me much more a hearkening back to Moses removing His veil in the presence
of God -- moreso than a wedding night scenario.  However, I was not
shocked at the view that the removal of a veil might also intend to recall
an intimate, spousal setting.  As I said, I rather enjoyed the overall
posting.

I have come to anticipate a higher quality of prose from John, i.e., with
more respectful tone.  I would count his contribution to the Baha'i
Encyclopedia on prayer, for example, as a model of thorough, clear, and
objective Baha'i writing.  I feel that including the above passage in the
context presented, does not portray the Manifestation he loves in an
appropriate light.

John is also entitled to better treatment from me.  Baha'u'llah says that
every situation has an apt remark.  I have seen a recent book by a Baha'i,
who suggests that if you haven't found the apt remark of the moment,
better to stay silent.  I rushed the moment, and spoke from revulsion and
accusation, rather than from a more centered place.  While my revulsion at
the imagery as presented remains; I am not entitled to hurt the friends of
God, so, John, I apologize for inflicting that pain.

Now, John, please reconsider inclusion of that portion of the Tablet in
your essay.  The fact that you included it but did not comment on it,
indicates *at least* that you were tentative about it.  Not commenting on
it provided some "plausible deniability," perhaps.  The Manifestations
were not men of excess.  As you and Linda have noted, none of your
research into Baha'u'llah's life indicates the slightest sexual
impropriety on His part.  As you also know, the enemies of Baha'u'llah
accuse Him of just that, to discredit Him.  Is it not possible that you, a
devoted follower, one with a university position and established
credentials, are providing them with support for their tittering
accusations?

My objections do not rest with the possible reaction by the public, or the
enemies.  If the posting were to always remain in-house, I would still
state that this is highly inappropriate.

Thanks for listening.
Brent

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 20:45:57 +0100
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
From: Loni.BramsonLerche@ping.be (Loni Bramson-Lerche)
Subject: Teacher Training Handbook

Would anyone have a copy of the *Child Education Teacher
Training Handbook* prepared by the Baha'i National
Education Committee (rev.ed. 1979)?  If so, please let
me know at my personal e-mail address.  Thank you.
Sincerely, Loni Bramson-Lerche

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: "Talisman"
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 14:49:49 EST
Subject: Re: rights and beyond

The proof of the pudding is in the eating!
The proof of the loving is in the caring!
The proof in the caring is in sacrificing!
The proof in sacrificing is .........???????

Show me now, what you care about human rights?
What do you do and not what you just think?

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 15:13:04 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: lua@sover.net (LuAnne Hightower)
Subject: various

Thanks once again, Ahang and Juan for your continued bestowals of tablets,
articles and the like.  They are food for my soul.  Unfortunately, I only
get to check the mail every few days, as most of Habib's (my husband's) work
is on the computer, and have difficulty finding much time to respond at all,
let alone to commit to engaging in continued dialogues on the Iqan, Aschi
and the like.  Nonetheless, I feel blessed to be able to have access to the
fruits of you labours, and feel deep gratitude for you generosity.  What's
left of my brain also seems to be melting a bit with every day of this
pregnancy, and I must admit that I seldom feel up to the task (Cop out:  I'm
just a singing massage therapist who's prone to occasional outbursts.).

On 2/9/96, Marie wrote:

I would like to comment on the notion, if I understand you correctly,  that
in the New World Order there will no longer be a need to guarantee our
"rights" because humankind will have reached a stage of maturity where they
will be a given. It strikes me that the insistence on laws guaranteeing our
rights is possibly a reflection of our fear that without them, those who are
prone to "evil" will, in fact, usurp them.  It certainly seems to have been
the case throughout history
including the present day.  I truly believe that EVIL does not exist as a
force in the universe, but that  human beings and the institutions they
manage have great capacity to do evil when their hearts are turned from the
Light of Divine teachings.   Even when our hearts are turned towards the
light, we are not free from error, misjudgment, obstinacy, recalcitrance,
negligence and disobedience.  These qualities affect the way we administer
the affairs of the Faith as well as the quality of our lives.  This, to me,
explains the deep concern many have with the importance of guaranteeing
human rights during this Age of Transition.

LuAnne responds:

Yes, Marie!  Your posting touched me deeply.  This, to me is the purpose of
the Mashriq.  This is why the developmnet of our communities' devotional
lives is so crucial.  This is what I find somewhat disturbing in the
postings that continually point to administrative reform as the necessary
ingredient in changing the course of the Faith in America.  When we
individually and collectively become more connected through acts of worship
and devotion to the Source of our being, we naturally become less attached
to our personal stake in any given issue.  Until we become utterly convinced
of our absolute dependence upon His Mercy, His Guidance, His Knowledge and
come to trust this without question, we can never hope to begin the journey
to reunion.  But we must be willing to die a thousand deaths along the way.
We are called to repeatedly sacrifice the bits and pieces of our egos' whims
and desires, to leave behind all our ideas about what we know, descend into
valley after valley of tests and challenges, the inner ones, before we can
begin to fathom the facets of the Gem that the Blessed Beauty has bestowed
upon us.  We cannot gloss over this part of the journey and wholeheartedly
embrace the social vision that this Most Great Revelation embodies.  This is
the reversal that happens between Baha'u'llah and the Maiden.  The Feminine
Principal becomes the active agent, and Baha'u'llah, the receptacle.  In the
dialogue between them, She admonishes Him when He strays from that state of
receptivity into His presumptions about Who She is.  This is each of us in
the context of our relationship with the Manifestation.  It requires our
consistent self-honesty about how we are relating to Him.  It isn't pretty
work, but we've got to do it.  Are we allowing ourselves to be shaped by
Him, or attempting to shape Him to fit our vision?  The answer to this in
the heart of every believer.  That reminds me of a Sufi ilahi (everything
does....)

ONLY THE HEART

There's a gem within the mountain.
There's a drop that holds the ocean.
Only the heart can see it, only the heart can see it, only the heart can see.
Be the drop that holds the ocean, only the heart can be.

Be the light from a melting candle.
Light another if you're able.
Only the heart can see it, only the heart can see it, only the heart can see.
Be the light from a melting candle only the heart can see.

Non-existence hid its treasure
In the lover's inmost center.
Only the heart can see it, only the heart can see it, only the heart can see.
Non-existence hid a treasure only the heart can see.

Longwinded with a short attention span,
LuAnne

=END=

Date:        Sat, 10 Feb 96 15:22:12 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: re: dialog, arguments and quarrels

2-10-96 Re the critical assessment of "The God of Buddha" etc. I agree
with Richard that it would qualify as adhomenin, which I understand is a
breech of code. The specific criticisms I think were acceptable, but the
accusations of plagiarism, etc. etc. were definitely not, and not
supported by the specific criticisms offered. It seems the critic did
not recognize his comments as slanderous or as backbiting, but the House
of Justice and the Writings themselves have a lot to say about the
choice of words - written or spoken. Perhaps the critic, who has
obviously done his homework in other respects, may want to reconsider
his statements in the light of these before they lead to
something hurtful to the Faith. Perhaps the defendants will give him a
moment to reconsider before it escalates out of control as these
things often do if not checked.

One point I would like to offer, is that many of the scholars of the
nineteenth century were very learned and inspired, and being less
influenced by the dominant academic models (which can be called
essentially materialistic) currently popular, their work and
translations are often more insightful and inspired than more
modern scholars in some cases in my opinion. In other words more
recent is often not either better or more scholarly.
Just a thought. rick h.

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 12:45 PST
To: belove@sover.net
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: FWD>Response to E-mail rec.
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

Belove posted:
> A heterosexual person has a choice to be celibate,
>>but homosexual one does not.

saying "have sex with someone right now or I pull the trigger"?
How about we turn it around: A homosexual person has a choice, but a
heterosexual person does not. Who agrees?  If my spouse leaves the house for
a trip to visit family in Norway, is the family cat in danger? The next door
lady? The next door gentleman? The boy who delivers the newspaper?
The love between friends and the love between lovers is the *same love*
-- only the expression differs (Abdul Baha).  It is simply that expressing
love intra-gender via sexual acts is inappropriate behaviour,  that's all.
No matter how fine and dandy and honest and delightful that love may be, you
are notified by the manufacturer that the machinery is not to be operated
that way. Now shoghi effendi says that we don't know if occasional misuse of
the equipment voids the manufacturer's merciful warranty or not -- he says
we should hope for mercy but not count on it, or words to that effect.
There is nothing against love, affection, dediation, friendship, unity, life
or any of those things in our Faith -- we have simply been asked to not have
sex with folks of the same gender even if we want to. And if we are, or want
to , and do so, we are supposed to not be resigned to this as a perpetual
condition (unlike the perpetual virgin).
We are not expected to *not*  "desire" "want" "prefer" for our "self" things
contrary to the instructions from the Creator -- we are expected to do our
best to not *act* on those specific "wants."  There are people in my part of
the country  who love animals and people who *love* animals -- love is
appropriate to both, the "love act (sex)" is inappropriate. Which reminds me:

A duck walks into his regular pharmacy and asks for a box of condoms.
The pharacists says "want me to put these on your bill?"
To which he replies: "I'm not that kind of duck."

Margee Gipson made an excellent point when she recently asked in words
similar to these:
If I am a heterosexual Baha'i woman, I am expected to be chaste. But if I am
a lesbian Baha'i woman, is it suddenly supposed to be OK for me not to be
chaste?

If homosexuals have "no choice" then a lesbian woman has no choice and I am
far more "pro-choice" than that scenario allows. women without choice does
not sound feminist,  humanist, or accurate  to me at all.

Burl - confused in cow country where spiritual men have been known to
entertain angelic hefers unaware

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 13:49:28 -0700 (MST)
From: "[G. Brent Poirier]"
To: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: lawyers

Sen, I entirely missed your earlier post about lawyers.  Send it and
I'll  try to respond.
Brent

=END=

Date: 10 Feb 96 12:58:16 U
From: "Dan Orey"
Subject: Genders Smenders
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: DWA100F@eagle.cc.odu.edu, gjertsen@harborside.com,
103275.1472@compuserve.com, slynch@interserv.com,
JFMALARET@ucdavis.edu, gwatts@freenet.edmonton.ab.ca,
steve.zakharias@m.cc.utah.edu

Jonah  and the His Amazing Technicolored Talismans -

I no longer see things as gay or straight, true or false, yes or know type
answers. I see life as a long essay or portfolio. As a mathematician I often
see things in light of ven diagrams and bell curves and the like.... so forgive
me.

A while back Masters and Johnson did some very important work that demonstrated
that sexuality is a continuum. There some that are at both extremes of the
curve - one being 100% homosexual, and the other 100% heterosexual, most of us
are somewhere in between.

Its been my feeling that those having the most difficulty with me and my
(I'll use the Spanish term here) _trozo_ chunk of all it in each of us. What
the Baha'i community is just beginning to recognize is that each of us has a
little bit of homophobia, heterosexuality, and homosexuality inside of us. Its
my feeling (and my experience) that the most vehemently anti-gay sentiments are
being expressed out of fear. Its horrifying to recognize our inner feelings,
thoughts, desires, and its easier to condemn them than to confront them. I see
that changing, and Talisman is a prime example.

What I really find exciting here, is the people who are willing to discuss
accepting me and my friends. There is a faint, apology growing here. What many
of us pray for is a change in climate - global warming.

Let me describe what I think should be considered. And the honorary as well as
card carrying homosexuals may want to chime in, with their perspectives.

I look forward to a Baha'i culture that encourages, REALLY encourages those
around them to investigate the Faith. Right now I think we pick and choose who
we teach, because for one reason or another we recognize that certain folks of
capacity maybe either a) cause problems, b) be a problem, c) cause us to change
or confront our own and community's failings, or d ) all of the above.

In the future, I can see a gay or lesbian being attracted to the Faith, because
we are honest and apologetic, just as are my MCC, Catholic, Episcopalian,
Presbyterian, and Lutheran friends are to their seekers. We should and do
answer their questions, but should so in light of an honest apology - one that
recognizes the confusion we have over this issue. But one that says, we want
and need you, because our community will not be complete with out the complete
perspective that you will bring to the table. No judgment, no condescension,
just unconditional love.

In my experience, what makes the Baha'is "different", not better, yet! is that
we recognize reality as somewhat relative. Our honesty never ever waivers, it
always presents the Faith and its teachings as they are - BUT, it could the
seeker know that in this case we are in a growth mode, and that we cannot grow
unless we have  their honest, and open perspective. Our job as Baha'is is to
create a safe, loving and nurturing environment where this will occur, because
if we do not, someone else will, actually is do it for us. And it is happening
here in California, at a pace that frightens me.

This is why I really appreciate  Mary K's recent posts - they reflect exactly
what I had hoped and prayed for. In teaching my glbt (gay. lesbian, bisexual
and transgendered) friends I need not apologize for the writings, we need only
be honest - that we need those folks here, and that it won't  be easy - but hey
glbt's understand difficulty, what they need is unconditional love.

Personally I have every bit of faith that this dilemma will be resolved in a
way that will absolutely amaze us all in our gray haired retirement! The youth,
as they grow up, and into places of responsibility and influence will begin to
see that they miss their gay & lesbian, bisexual, transgendered, or Black, or
Latino, or smart, or creative or who ever  friends, and will demand that we
create a place for them here. They will demand it because we need it.

I am more than just one part of me - I  am unique mixture of all my experiences
- I am a white male from a red neck little hill billy town in southern Oregon
who grew up to go to college and found about a lot of things - one and most
importantly that there was this thing called Baha'i - I was never the same
again. This hill billy was transformed - because he was forced to interact with
people that he wouldn't have interacted with had he stayed home, and pursued a
career in the timber industry - suddenly he met good people from Iran, South
America, all over - and this transformed him. He interacted with the  writings,
and began to see the world differently, and realized that he was different. He
saw a glimpse of something so different, yet felt it missed something.

I am so very grateful to Baha'u'llah for these gifts! Now all I ask is that all
you good people from all over the world QUIT bashing your gay and lesbian
children, friends, and family and invite them in to sit at the table and be
loved by us, just like we love you! Until we really do this, we will not be
complete, we won't be able to offer what it is that we are meant to be!

Please, now  turn you hymnals to hymn number 345 _I gotta a place up inna that
kingdom, ain'ta dat good news?_

Your bruised, bludgeoned, but still standing brother,  Daniel Orey

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 15:50:21 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: "Richard C. Logan"
Cc: Talisman
Subject: Re: rights and beyond

Richard:  Nope, sorry, it won't wash.

1)  Your reply to me was intemperate and emotional.  My message simply
reviewed the case for an *emphasis* on rights.

2)  You accused me of various illegitimate motivations and cast
aspersions on my character.  I have never done that with you.

3)  On Talisman, you cannot say things like there is an over-emphasis on
rights and that we should blame ourselves for what is wrong rather than
the administration, and expect not to be challenged.  Since the
administration sets policies, and in many instances runs roughshod over
individual rights, why is it again that we should blame ourselves for this?

4)  This business of throwing a tantrum and tearing down other people
when they politely disagree with your postings does not become you.  Nor,
I am afraid, will it protect your ideas from scrutiny or discussion.
Good try, though.

:-)

cheers    Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 21:14:14 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: "Talisman list - MSNINET"
Subject: Words of the Wise re: Gender

If nature puts a burden on a man by making him different, it also gives him a
power.
--The half man-half woman that Lame Deer spoke with, quoted in Tinselled
Bucks, by Maurice Kenny, in Living the Spirit, ed. Will Roscoe, p. 30.

Every day we do gender. The way we look, act, dress, talk, walk, wear our
hair, think about ourselves, and communicate with others comprises our gender
schema. Gender is one of the most common rituals, performed daily. It is also
one of the most effective means of social control.
--Blurb for MacKenzie's Transgender Nation, Fall Releases, publications by
IFGE, Fall94

Because it is such a powerful force in the world today, the Western
Judeo-Christian tradition is often accepted as the arbiter of "natural"
behavior of humans. If Europeans and their descendant nations of North America
accept something as normal, then anything different is seen as abnormal. Such
a view ignores the great diversity of human existence.
This is the case for the study of gender. How many genders are there? To a
modern Anglo-American, nothing might seem more definite than the answer that
there are two: men and women. But not all societies around the world agree
with Western culture's view that all humans are either women or men. The
commonly accepted notion of "the opposite sex," based on anatomy, is itself an
artifact of our society's rigid sex roles. Among many cultures, there have
existed different alternatives to "man" or "woman."...
--W.L. Williams, "The Spirit and the Flesh: Sexual Diversity in American
Indian Culture," p.1.

The emphasis of American Indian religions, then, is on the spiritual nature of
all things. ... The spirit of one thing (including a human) is not superior to
the spirit of any other. ... The function of religion is not to try to condemn
or to change what exists, but to accept the realities of the world and to
appreciate their contributions to life. Everything that exists has a purpose.
One of the basic tenets of American Indian religion is the notion that
everything in the universe is related. ... In all of these polarities, there
exist mediators. The role of the mediator is to hold the polarities together,
to keep the world from disintegrating. Polarities exist within human society
also. The most important category within Indian society is gender. The notions
of Woman and Man underlie much of social interaction and are comparable to
[i.e.: represent] the other major polarities. ...
The mediator between the polarities of woman and man, in the American Indian
religious explanation, is a being that combines the elements of both genders.
... Many Native American religions accept this phenomenon in the same way that
they accept other variations from the norm. ...
--W.L. Williams, "The Spirit and the Flesh: Sexual Diversity in American
Indian Culture," p. 21.

I figured out that the reason i have such a hard time in relationships with
the opposite sex, is that i haven't found it yet.
--Jemanio Fisher, When a Tree Falls..., p. 5.

Males have a lot of trouble not looking at breasts.
What is worse, males cannot look at breasts and think at the same time. In
fact, scientists now believe that the primary biological function of breasts
is to make males stupid.
--Dave Barry, Life Goes On, Bra, in West, 27 Feb 94, p. 23

I don't see why people can't just be friendly to people without requesting
ideological visas to travel from one sexual orientation to another.
--Spaz, in The Bloated Tick, v6#4

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 12:50 PST
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Fwd: Things of great scientific importance (fwd)

Thought you folks might like this:
BB
>>> Subject: Things of great scientific importance
>>>
>>> >From a contest sponsored by OMNI Magazine.
>>>
>>> GRAND PRIZE WINNER:
>>> When a cat is dropped, it always lands on its feet, and when toast is
dropped, it always lands with the buttered side facing down.  I propose to
strap buttered toast to the back of a cat; the two will hover, spinning
inches above  the ground.  With a giant buttered cat array, a high-speed
monorail could easily  link New York with Chicago.
>>>
>>> RUNNERS-UP:
>>> #1  If an infinite number of rednecks riding in an infinite number
>>> of pickup trucks fire an infinite number of shotgun rounds
>>> at an infinite number of highway signs, they will eventually
>>> produce all the worlds great literary works in Braille.
>>>
>>> #2  Why Yawning Is Contagious:  You yawn to equalize the pressure on
people's  ear pressures, so they must yawn to even it out.
>>>
>>> #3 Communist China is technologically underdeveloped because they have
no  alphabet and therefore cannot use acronyms to communicate ideas at a
faster rate.
>>>
>>> #4  The earth may spin faster on its axis due to deforestation. Just as
a figure skater's rate of spin increases when the arms are brought in close
to the body,  the cutting of tall trees may cause our planet to spin
dangerously fast.
>>>
>>> HONORABLE MENTIONS:
>>> #1  Birds take off at sunrise.  On the opposite side of the world, they
are  landing at sunset.  This causes the earth to spin on its axis.
>>>
>>> #2 The reason hot-rod owners raise the backs of their cars is that it's
easier to go faster when you're always going downhill.
>>>
>>> #3  The quantity of consonants in the English language is constant.  If
omitted in one place, they turn up in another. When a Bostonian "pahks" his
"cah," the lost r's migrate southwest, causing a Texan to "warsh" his car
and invest in "erl wells."

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 17:11:01 -0500 (EST)
From: Jonah Winters
To: "[G. Brent Poirier]"
Cc: Talisman
Subject: Re: Sinaic Imagery

Thanks Brent, for exxplaining what specifically you found disturbing.

"When the gates of Paradise swung wide and the Holy Youth came forth, lo!
in His hand was a serpent plain! Rejoice! This is the Deathless Youth,
come with a gushing spring."

And you said "the placement of these images provided an impact that I found
sickening."

If I may, Brent, it never, EVER occured to me that this excerpt could
refer to an image neither of us is explicitly mentioning.  May I venture
to guess that it is very, very unlikely that, if we have that image, we
are understanding the text. I do not get that impression from reading
*either* John's article *or* the original tablet he posted in full, and,
had you not pointed it out, I doubt that I ever even would have noticed
that misreading. I can see why you termed it "blasphemous!"

Other interpretations, anyone? Perhaps the snake is Aaron's rod/snake,
and the gushing spring is Kawthar?

-J

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Jonah and Kari Winters
33 Endean Avenue / Toronto, Ontario / M4M-1W5 / (416) 461-3527

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 16:03:28 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Rights:  as they are
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Talisman"

Dear Talismanists,

Neither a Piece of paper, a Contract, a Declaration, a Constitution, a
Tradition nor indeed,  institutions, in and of themeselves, in my humble
estimate, can garrauntee rights or justice in this world. There will
never be a Super Hero, Cop, Prince, or some other figment of our
imaginations who will rush in at every moment and solve every injustice.
This being so, as a hard fact of existence, there must be a higher
purpose and meaning to distressing events in every humans life.  I have
previously referred to injustice as an opportunity for spiritual
advancement--that certainly seems to be in consonance with Baha'i
teachings.  The recognition that it is incumbent upon every individual to
show forth the qualities enshrined in the "Names of God"  and the
inculcation of these attributes into every human being is the surest
safegard of human rights.  All of these things are fundamentally
contingent upon the good will and at a higher level upon the good hearts
(Wisdom) and behavior (Justice) of the people.

There are no permanent political solutions to sociological problems.
They persist and fester and refuse to go away.  There can be stablization
for a period through political solutions but the Divine Physician must be
brought in to effect a permanent cure.  Everyone has a role to play in
this effort, however,  it will not happen by itself.  Bosnia is an
excellent example of this. The UN was powerless to effect a solution.  It
took the leadership of America [ Spiritual Destiny of America(although
lamentably late upon the scene, mostly due to the apathy and post Viet
Nam syndrome)] to galvanize the forces and effectuate some momentum.  It
was neccesary as it will sometimes be to use force.  But force is not a
real solution,  it may be neccesary and appropriate, yet wounds still
remain.  The animosity of one generation is passed on to the next.

People in this country, I believe, have reached a point where partisanism
has become indigestible.  We see a debate raging in this country over
"Family Values" (Conservatives) and "Rights"  (liberals) that parallels
the debate in some sense between Juan and myself.   Except I am not
saying  "One and not the other"  I am saying, in fact,  neither ( Rights
and the Institutions).  I simply have not found the ability to express my
vision.  If I were to express a less vague position I would say Both and
neither or simply both (Independent Moderate).

People in this country have also found that even with the most extensive
legal system, most garraunteed rights, largest police force, most jails,
most powerful military, near highest if not highest standard of living,
most lawyers, doctors, hospitals, millionaire/billionaires, oldest
continuous republic of global standing, most admired constitution and on
and on;   they are not safe in their homes, can be denied medical
treatment without money, molested as children, kidnapped, mugged, drafted
and sent to Viet Nam, subjected to racism,  railroaded into Jail,
oppressed with every henious "ISM" one can imagine, Gay bashed, Iranian
bashed, be shot on the street, sued into the stone age, (I hope I didn't
leaver anything important out) and every other calamity that flesh is
heir to.  Now finally ask,  "Is human behavior an issue in this?"  Adding
as many rights as one can ever imagine will not change any of that.  What
I'm calling for is the true respect of human rights which is embodied in
Baha'i behavior.

Rights in the final analysis require great maturity on the part of people
before their efficacy can be fully appreciated.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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, 10 Feb 96 22:19:01 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
Subject: No Pain, No Gain

Dearest Talizens,

I can't add anything deep to this discussion. I'm deeply uncomfortable with
eroticism and I won't even think about male/male sex. I'm sorry but it would
make me squeamish. It's a limitation of mine, not a judgment on anyone else.
For example, some foods make me squeamish but I don't tell anyone else not to
consume them. Different tastes, different backgrounds, all natural, just
diverse. We all sit happily at the same table and share our joy at the
richness and variety of the banquet. In my posts about gender and also those
about the genuine welcoming of *all* people into the faith, I've never
mentioned anything about sex. It isn't my business anyway. I have my own
problems. Even if I cared about sex--and I don't--the meds that I'm taking
would make it totally impossible. So I'm lucky. Chastity isn't an issue for
me. I have bigger issues than that. You should all take what I'm saying as
purely a personal view. As I said, I'm a lucky one now. Given my life, it's

What about when s-e-x was an issue? And don't I feel for people who think
they're "condemned" to a chaste life? Well, here Hannah reveals a different
side of herself. I honestly believe that the spiritual nourishment from the
Creative Word is so rich and so life-affirming, so vital, that it's worth any
sacrifice whatsoever. It's worth any physical deprivation. It's worth it just
to be setting a pattern for future civilization. It's worth martyrdom if it
should ever come to that. It can have no price. Why on earth would we put up
with anything as uncomfortable as fasting, for example, if the TEMPORARY
discomfort of doing it didn't lead directly to peace of mind, and finally,
euphoria? I suggest that fasting is uncomfortable but not unnatural. In fact,
it's a higher kind of nourishment. So is obedience to those laws that are
obviously literal such as chastity. From self-discipline and obedience to the
Creator, there flows unimaginable joy. Where are our ultimate priorities?

This line of thinking seems to be leading me back to an old topic: what of the
Letter? Can the Universal House of Justice have deeper motives than are
apparent to us on the surface? Maybe they are being guided to protect the
Faith somehow. Maybe science and contemporary liberal thinking have nothing at
all to do with their motivation at this time. Might not the One who guides
them see farther than we do? Does the Mirror of the Creator suddenly love some
of us less than others? That's an untenable thought. Maybe our self-interests
and everyday concerns are smaller than the future of the world in troubling
times. Just maybe. Maybe it's time to start thinking like this: I am in pain
and loss now but I want to live happily forever. Call it pie-in-the-sky or
whatever you want but I'm buying it. It is what we sign up for and it always
comes down to simple decisions after all the arguments and references and
reasoning and shouting and crying. No pain, no gain, says Hannah. I'm no
fundamentalist. I can't even stand them. But I do have my priorities and an
admittedly strong opinion on these matters.

Let's not be confused because some people who drag their old cruddy baggage
into the Faith with them are writing ugly things on s.r.b. and elsewhere. I'm
ignoring the Fundies of all kinds again and am happier as a result.

'and then the day came when the risk
to remain tight in a bud was
more painful than the risk
it took to blossom."
--Anais Nin

Loving and detached,

Hannah
----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT
Sent: 	Saturday, 10 February, 1996 9:13 AM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	Re: FWD>Response to E-mail rec.

. . . The love between men/women - men/men -women/women
. I cannot relate to this at all. I love people, just people. . .

. . . So, it boils down to the phrase, "we are all spiritual beings in human
bodies struggling to be divine". Frankly, until I die I will not know
what that means either. I get glimpses of it sometimes and wish I
could just sail on into the other worlds . . .
love,
quanta

>So. Those of you who say that this position taken by the Guardian is
>Truth, let me ask you. What do you see in your heart that supports
>it. I've tried to answer from my heart.

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Sat, 10 Feb 1996 18:09:05 EST
Subject:       What is going on?

Burl,

A heterosexual does have a right to be married. They don't have to be
married of course, unless you are a poor little girl in a Third
World and your folks marry you off to someone to save their name and
fill up their bank account. If you are not a heterosexual, but
attracted to another human being, you are forced to be celibate, if
your want to be chaste. Isn't that so? Or, am I losing my logic?
I don't know what the future will be like. But, I think God is very
loving and patient while this New baby is born. So can you be, huh!

Dan,

I always told my children that breasts were God's milk bottle for
babies  So, get off of quoting these stupid ideas, aptly labeled.
Otherwise I am gonna be labeled as liar to my grandchildren.

Brent,

I have no idea why you had bring up this stuff which is past now. John
and the family have need our support. How about organizing a prayer
vigil for his son around the globe. That will be worthwhile endeavour.
And I also did not get the same picture you are getting. Time for a
visit to an optometrist!! Take care my friend. Just let go of it.

love,
quanta

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Sat, 10 Feb 1996 18:20:16 EST
Subject:       Re: No Pain, No Gain

Hannah,

I have a dear friend who lives in the woods for the past ten years.
When there is a tornado he is one of the most detached people on
earth. So, I told him not to judge my fears of tornadoes while
he is living in a tipi. I am happy for your sense of detachment while
your are in a tipi too. But, we who live in houses with windows do
have bricks falling on our faces and glasses shaddering on our heads
when there is a tornado. Have mercy! The society in which we are
trying to function as human beings have very abnormal conditions.
Why do you think that Baha'u'llah permit marriage at a very early age
then it is custom in the Western world? Why did the Guardian stated
that financial problems should not be an impediment for early
marriage?  Just throwing some thoughts for your deliberations.
The social, economic and psychological conditions created many
divorces. Why is there so much teenage pregnancy? Think about it
differently, it is not just one thing. There are many intertwined
reasons. I am getting off my soap box. Love you!!
I am getting addicted again. I just left work and came home promising
myself that I will not login and here I am. Got a get ready for the
party.

love,

quanta

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Sat, 10 Feb 1996 18:31:10 EST
Subject:       Re: genders smenders

Dan,

My deepest apologies. It was not you! Sorry friend! Just before
getting off I read the message again and it was Hannah's.
Goodness, I am getting old and not very gracefully huh?
Gotta get off now and get ready. I am gonna teach some folks from our
department how to do belly dancing

love you,

quanta

p.s. I am putting this on talisman you deserve a public apology

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 18:33:57 -0500 (EST)
From: jwalbrid
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Gushing springs

The imagery is from the Qur'anic description of Moses, but I now finally
realize what Brent was upset about.  I confess that Brent's
interpretation of the imagery had not occured to me (quite unexpected
evidence of the purity of my soul), and so far as I know it is not
intended by Baha'u'llah.  It is, at least within the constraint of
translating into readable English, what the text says.

john walbridge

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 14:30 GMT+1300
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Alison & Steve Marshall
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
Cc: "Richard C. Logan"

Richard Logan wrote:
>I know another edition is of Mr. Fozdar book is about to come out,

Bruce Burrill has produced a lot of evidence that Jamshed Fozdar's book
contains sloppy scholarship -- problems that should have been picked up
during Baha'i review, since Baha'i review is meant to be about setting and
meeting standards of accuracy and dignity.

I don't believe that anyone on Talisman has been able to refute Bruce's
charges and it seems to me that the National Spiritual Assembly responsible
for carrying out Baha'i review on Fozdar's new edition should be informed of
the debate about the old edition.

Richard, if you or anyone else can find out which National Spiritual
Assembly is carrying out Baha'i review on Fozdar's book, I'd be happy to
forward Bruce's evidence (with Bruce's permission).

ka kite ano,
Steve

--------------------------------------------------------------
Alison and Steve Marshall
Email:  forumbahai@es.co.nz
90 Blacks Road, Opoho, Dunedin/Otepoti, Aotearoa/New Zealand
--------------------------------------------------------------

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 14:30 GMT+1300
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Alison & Steve Marshall
Subject: Short meditative article on Fasting
Cc: "William P. Collins" <0004705541@mcimail.com>

Bill Collins kindly gave permission for his Forum magazine article on
fasting to be posted to any discussion group:

Fasting: the mercy and grace of God
===================================

by Bill Collins

The pillars that sustain the individual's spiritual life in the Baha'i Faith
are similar to those in Islam and the other world religions. Prayer, fasting
and pilgrimage nourish believers throughout the planet.

These spiritual disciplines are deeply interconnected. They form one
seamless web to impel the believer along the path of growth and maturity.
The fasting period(1) is intimately connected to prayer and pilgrimage. In
the temporary denial of the body's demands, awareness of conversation with
God is heightened. The soul is urged along the roads of a spiritual
pilgrimage that is the inward mirror of the outward voyage each pilgrim
undertakes toward the sacred heart of his or her faith.

There is a Qiblih of the Baha'i world, and there is a Qiblih of the heart.
Each points to the other. The conscious decision to forgo food and drink
reminds the penitent believer that God has commanded this step. The reminder
urges the soul to meditate on the Lord's purposes and to ask the Lord for
guidance. God, through His grace and mercy, furthers the faithful ones on
their journey to the ultimate goal, to "Turn thy sight unto thyself, that
thou mayest find Me standing within thee, mighty, powerful and
self-subsisting."(2)

Baha'u'llah's purpose in ordaining the fast is not to mortify the flesh as
ascetics would do. Neither is it to compel the believer toward self-hatred
and morbidity. Fasting is a symbol, a sign, a reminder of the realities that
surround and transcend the workday existence of our usual petty concerns.

Baha'is often refer to fasting as a law. This description is deceptive; it
risks demeaning the spirit of the fast by confusing it with our current
notion of law as force and compulsion. Baha'u'llah, in His deep wisdom and
mercy, ordains the fasting period without making it a burden. This is not
simply because He has shortened it in comparison to the Christian and
Islamic fasts. He has made fasting a personal obligation, freed from the
constraints and dictatorial possibilities of institutional enforcement.
Fasting is the responsibility of each individual to undertake to the best of
his or her ability, within the requirements of that person's life, work and
circumstances.

Baha'u'llah has commanded exemptions to the fast for those whose health,
physical growth, or safety might be compromised by adherence to it. These
exemptions are as much obligations as is the abstention from food and drink.
The Lord of the Age does not compel us to harm ourselves by excessive zeal
in fasting.

These thoughts come from 27 years of experience as a Baha'i. I once believed
that my own well-being and salvation depended on a punctilious observance of
the most stringent and rigid requirements of Baha'u'llah's commandments.
Such an attitude led to my attempt to fast even when I became ill. I
developed an excessively critical eye toward the attempts of my fellow
believers to observe the obligation, including their use of the exemptions.
The National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of the United States reminded
us in a feast letter that we live in a society in which people "pride
themselves on being bitterly critical in order to justify their conflicts
with others."

I believe that Baha'u'llah's purpose in ordaining the fast goes well beyond
our puny conceptions. It was not to create a law by which to parade our good
works and piety to others, nor a yardstick to condone the judging of others'
sincerity in observance of their private spiritual obligations. Rather, it
is Baha'u'llah's map to the moderate path that He so unfailingly
recommended. He reveals the following in the Kitab-i-Aqdas:

"Lament not in your hours of trial, neither rejoice therein; seek ye the
Middle Way which is remembrance of Me in your afflictions and reflection
over that which may befall you in future. Thus informeth you He Who is the
Omniscient, He Who is aware."(3)

Whether an individual Baha'i is fasting fully, partially or not at all, the
month of Loftiness is a reminder and remembrance. We remember who we are,
with Whom we must converse, to Whom we owe our allegiance, and toward Whom
we must journey. Thus reminded, we see Baha'u'llah standing before us,
always beckoning us forward into the light.

Footnotes:
=========

1. The Baha'i fasting period takes place between March 2-20 inclusive.
During this time, Baha'is do not drink or eat between sunrise and
sunset.

2. Baha'u'llah, Hidden Words of Baha'u'llah From the Arabic No. 13.

3. Baha'u'llah, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, no. 43 p. 35.

Biographical note from Bill Collins:
===================================

I recognised Baha'u'llah through studying His Writings, after several years
of religious search. The first Baha'is I met were those who came to enrol me
in the Faith. That was 1968.

I have a B.A. in French and Russian, an M.S. in Librarianship and an M.S.Sc.
(Master of Social Science), but I do not consider these more than the
fulfilment of customary academic requirements, since I have yet to get the
real credentials that come from the true recognition of God.

I have a wonderful family: a wife who is an artist, and 2 teenage children.
I had the privilege of serving at the World Centre for 13 years, where I was
chief librarian and also a member of a doo-wop group called "The Carmels". I
have a fondness for Sherlock Holmes, Rumpole of the Bailey, science fiction
and the works of Anne Rice.

I am presently Chief of the Cataloguing Division in the Copyright Office of
the United States, which is part of the Library of Congress. I am also
Library of Congress's recommending officer for Baha'i materials.

At the moment, I am considering how to generate a network among Baha'i
librarians. To this end, I recently printed the first two issues of a

Source:
======

Forum: whiti korero o nga Baha'i, vol. 4, no. 2, pages 42-44.
(c) 1995.  ISSN 1171-9559
90 Blacks Road, Opoho, Dunedin, New Zealand
Ph/fax: 64-3-4737279 (autodetect)
Internet: forumbahai@es.co.nz (Internet)

Back issues of Forum magazine available at \$US5 each. Contact
Marshall Family Publishing for details.

--------------------------------------------------------------
Alison and Steve Marshall
Email:  forumbahai@es.co.nz
90 Blacks Road, Opoho, Dunedin/Otepoti, Aotearoa/New Zealand
--------------------------------------------------------------

=END=

From: Alethinos@aol.com
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 21:07:34 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: The pressing need for maturity & the disc. on rights

It is not an question of whether we need to (greatly) mature as a community.
It is not a question of the fact that there is a good deal of
heavy-handedness on both the local and national levels by those that would
wish to squelch any real discussion.

But it is a very large question of how we go about bringing on these sorely
needed changes. Not only is it a matter of perspective, i.e. do we try to
*revamp* the Faith and make it into some liberal demo-theocracy or do we
really stretch ourselves, as the Central Figures have seemed to exhort us to
do (and recently echoed by Richard Logan) but it is also a matter of
morality. There is little doubt that many here have suffered under various
injustices large and small at the hands of those who inwardly crave power.
But I ask you here - should we stoop to the same level? Should we treat these
mini-tyrants as if they were truly a part of the Old World Order and we the
noble revolutionists galantly marching off to face overwhelming odds? Should
we play the French Underground to the terrible Nazis of Berlinmette? We have
our secret cells and plans, when and where do we plant the bombs?

This has been said so many times here, but it needs saying again. Changes
need to occur. But this way? Did Baha'u'llah and the Master experience living
martyrdom simply for us to throw up a hash of outworn socio-political and
philosophical planks as the *shining jewel* of a 1000 year Faith for all
Humankind? No! There must be and is a better way, a more revolutionary way
and more lasting way. If we only have the very unAmerican ability to see to
the horizon and find enough guts and determination to make our way toward it.

jim harrison

Alethinos@aol.com

=END=

Date:        Sat, 10 Feb 96 22:28:40 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: introductions re new member

Dear friends: The other new subscriber (didn't quite get the name) made
me realize that this etiquette is taken seriously. My name is Rick
Harmsen and I was just curious about talisman and subscribed, and all of
a sudden found 50 plus messages waiting. Not sure I can keep up with
that.

I've been a member of the Baha'i Faith since 1970, and live in Big
Rapids MI with Joyce and our three grown but not grown children. I got
sucked into posting before I had a chance to give this intro. I've
already seen a couple familiar names with whom I've corresponded, and
others I'm familiar with through their publications. I think it will
take a little adjustment, as I don't think I've experienced
communication quite like this. I am pleased to have the opportunity to
benefit selectively from this very dynamic dialog. I look forward to it.
Rick H.

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Sat, 10 Feb 1996 22:47:27 EST
Subject:       What I saw

Do you ever sip down
the last drops of coffee,
while rushing out of house
in the mornings?
Sometimes I do the same,
with my words.
Stroke down the last letters
on my keyboard and run.

While I was away from talisman,
a few posting sent my way,
among them Deathless Youth.
To me it meant,
God opens the doors of understanding
which leads to nearness to Him,
through an Everlasting Being,
The Ageless One everlasting Youth.
From His Mighty Hand
springs forth Knowledge for the Day.
But, it is the "insisting self"
which is called satan,
ignores the Truth,
and chooses this world.
This is what I saw,
and weeped and trembled within.

love,
quanta

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 23:25 EST
From: Dariush Lamie <0007368608@mcimail.com>
To: "talisman@indiana.edu"
Subject: Re.Short meditative article on fasting

-- [ From: Dariush Lamie * EMC.Ver #2.3 ] --

Dear Alison and Steve,

Thank you for posting the article of Bill Collins regarding *fasting*. Allow me
to share with you a tablet of Abd'ulbaha regarding the wisdom of fasting, and I
think Bill Collins will enjoy reading the following as well, and he may
incorporate it into revising his well thought article after reading the
following.

The following is a tablet of Abd'ulbaha  published in Maede-i Asemani ( I do
not know the volume off hand): This is just a summary of the tablet not a
literal translation.

The Divine wisdom in fasting is manifold. Among them :

1) As during those days that the Manifestation of God is engaged in the
revealing of Verses, through excessive occupation and intense attraction there
remains no condition or time for eating and drinking. For example, when His
Holiness Moses went to Mount Sinai and there engaged in instituting the law of
God, He fasted 40 days. For the purpose of awakening the people of Israel,
fasting was ordered for them.

Also, His Holiness Christ, in the beginning of instituting the laws and
teachings, He did not have time to eat for again 40 days. In the beginning the
disciples fasted, but later it was changed.

Likewise, the Koran was revealed in the month of Ramazan, that is why in Islam
during that month fasting became a duty. In the like manner The Bab, in the
beginning of the His Manifestation, He was so busy revealing Verses that passed
days in which He did not eat anything but just some tea.

Likewise, when Baha'u'llah was busy instituting the Teachings and revealing
Verses, He took no food except the least amount.

So, the purpose is that in order to follow the Divine Manifestations of God and
for the purpose of admonition and commemoration of their state, it became
incumbent upon the people to fast during those days.

Further, Abd'ulbaha says that for every sincere soul who has a beloved longs to
experience that state in which his beloved is. If his beloved is in a state of
sorrow, he desires sorrow, if in a state of joy, he desires joy, if in a state
of rest, he desires rest, if in a state of trouble, he desires trouble.

Now, since Baha'u'llah and The Bab fasted many days, being busy with
instituting The Teachings, it became necessary that the friends should follow
that example.

2)  Fasting is a way of remembrance of one's self. It increases our degree of
*spirituality*, and also, make our thoughts to be focused on remembrance of the
Manifestation of God which results with progress of our soul.

3) There are two kinds of fasting: spiritual and physical (material). The
physical fasting is abstenance from eating and drinking, or in other words,
abstanance from material desires. But, the second one which is spiritual is
abstenance from immoral acts and thoughts, and basically try to be more
spiritual. So, the material fasting is the secret of the spiritual fasting.

Lovingly,
Dariush Lamie

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 96 23:40 EST
From: Dariush Lamie <0007368608@mcimail.com>
To: "talisman@indiana.edu"
Subject: Fwd: Re.Short meditative article on fasting

-- [ From: Dariush Lamie * EMC.Ver #2.3 ] --

------- FORWARD, Original message follows -------

Date: Saturday, 10-Feb-96 08:09 PM

From: Dariush Lamie            \ MCI Mail:    (DLAMIE / MCI ID: 736-8608)
To:   talisman@indiana.edu     \ Internet:    (talisman@indiana.edu)

Subject: Re.Short meditative article on fasting

Dear Alison and Steve,

Thank you for posting the article of Bill Collins regarding *fasting*. Allow me
to share with you a tablet of Abd'ulbaha regarding the wisdom of fasting, and I
think Bill Collins will enjoy reading the following as well, and he may
incorporate it into revising his well thought article after reading the
following.

The following is a tablet of Abd'ulbaha  published in Maede-i Asemani ( I do
not know the volume off hand): This is just a summary of the tablet not a
literal translation.

The Divine wisdom in fasting is manifold. Among them :

1) As during those days that the Manifestation of God is engaged in the
revealing of Verses, through excessive occupation and intense attraction there
remains no condition or time for eating and drinking. For example, when His
Holiness Moses went to Mount Sinai and there engaged in instituting the law of
God, He fasted 40 days. For the purpose of awakening the people of Israel,
fasting was ordered for them.

Also, His Holiness Christ, in the beginning of instituting the laws and
teachings, He did not have time to eat for again 40 days. In the beginning the
disciples fasted, but later it was changed.

Likewise, the Koran was revealed in the month of Ramazan, that is why in Islam
during that month fasting became a duty. In the like manner The Bab, in the
beginning of the His Manifestation, He was so busy revealing Verses that passed
days in which He did not eat anything but just some tea.

Likewise, when Baha'u'llah was busy instituting the Teachings and revealing
Verses, He took no food except the least amount.

So, the purpose is that in order to follow the Divine Manifestations of God and
for the purpose of admonition and commemoration of their state, it became
incumbent upon the people to fast during those days.

Further, Abd'ulbaha says that for every sincere soul who has a beloved longs to
experience that state in which his beloved is. If his beloved is in a state of
sorrow, he desires sorrow, if in a state of joy, he desires joy, if in a state
of rest, he desires rest, if in a state of trouble, he desires trouble.

Now, since Baha'u'llah and The Bab fasted many days, being busy with
instituting The Teachings, it became necessary that the friends should follow
that example.

2)  Fasting is a way of remembrance of one's self. It increases our degree of
*spirituality*, and also, make our thoughts to be focused on remembrance of the
Manifestation of God which results with progress of our soul.

3) There are two kinds of fasting: spiritual and physical (material). The
physical fasting is abstenance from eating and drinking, or in other words,
abstanance from material desires. But, the second one which is spiritual is
abstenance from immoral acts and thoughts, and basically try to be more
spiritual. So, the material fasting is the secret of the spiritual fasting.

Lovingly,
Dariush Lamie
------- FORWARD, End of original message -------

=END=

Date: Sat, 10 Feb 1996 23:02:16 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: rights and beyond
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Juan Cole"
Cc: "Talisman"

Juan writes:

>3)  On Talisman, you cannot say things like there is an over-emphasis on
>rights and that we should blame ourselves for what is wrong rather than
>the administration, and expect not to be challenged.

I'm not going to repeat myself again and again on this matter--your
characterization of my intent is inaccurate. I was saying, in reference
to your posts and the various back and forth with a few of the list
members that there was an over-emphasis, and a lack of balance--not on
Talisman, the list itself.  You are the prime mover of the rights
posting.  I believe this all started for me with your post on "Power and
Anti-liberalism".  If memory doesn't fail me we privately discussed this
matter many times.  I, also have several posts you can peruse to gain my
meaning.  Secondly, you expect me to take it as a given that the
administration is to blame.  I can see no reason to do that.  There are
nine people there and many thousands of us--after doing this math I made
my conclusion.

>2)  You accused me of various illegitimate motivations and cast
>aspersions on my character.  I have never done that with you.

What are these terrible aspersions?  That you are very opinionated? I
would say the same of myself.  In this case I simply thought you were
ahead in that race.  And these illegitimate motivations!  My word I said
you seem to consider yourself a superior *Humanist* and you are
competitive.

>1)  Your reply to me was intemperate and emotional.  My message simply
>reviewed the case for an *emphasis* on rights.

"Intemperate" is true and for that I apologize.  But I think you do
yourself too modestly in characterizing your post as having " simply
>reviewed the case for an *emphasis* on rights."

>4)  This business of throwing a tantrum and tearing down other people
>when they politely disagree with your postings does not become you.  Nor,
>I am afraid, will it protect your ideas from scrutiny or discussion.
>Good try, though.

This didn't happen!  And there is nothing "polite" about the following:

> One member of the current NSA of the US in particular appears to
>relish brandishing the threat or reality of withdrawal of administrative
>rights for so much as looking at him cross-eyed.

I ask you, who is doing the tearing down?  Nor are these ideas free from
scrutiny:

> I
>do not respect this individual, whom I consider a major embarrassment to
>the Faith, and I pray every spring the friends will finally have the good
>sense to turn him out of office.

To go any further is pointless.  I'm sorry but somethings I can't let
like sheer revisionism on your part to say so.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 00:36:41 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Tricycle: The Buddhist Review & Rights

I received today in the mail a solicitation for a subscription to a
journal, *Tricycle: The Buddhist Review.*  I must say I am tempted,
though I don't always get time to read the magazines I'm already
subscribed to!  I thought I'd ask others if they knew of the magazine and
what they thought of it.

Also, the self-description of this magazine caught my eye:

"Tricycle is the independent voice of Buddhism in America . . . [It] is
non-dogmatic and non-sectarian . . . Tricycle looks at
our world from a Buddhist perspective.  But we don't offer you simple
doubt.  We investigate controversial issues."

I admired these sentiments a good deal.  And then I got to thinking that
no Baha'i magazine could describe itself in these terms.  There cannot be
an "independent" voice of the Baha'i faith because of a community culture
of control from above and because of mechanisms like prepublication
censorship ("Review").  The typical Baha'i use of the word "Covenant" to
mean "conformism and ultra-orthodoxy" means that the community finds it
difficult to tolerate, much less nourish, a non-dogmatic and
non-sectarian viewpoint.  Difficult questions and controversial issues
are pretty much out of the question.

And that seemed to me a shame.

cheers   Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 01:00:01 -0500 (EST)
From: Jonah Winters
To: Juan R Cole
Cc: talisman
Subject: Tricycle

Dear Juan et al.,
I find Tricycle to be a fine magazine in many respects, and
appreciate its occasional sense of whimsy. But, many times when I read it,
I had a kind of "New Agey" feeling. Now, that's fine, of course, and it is
what some of its subscribers (like my mom) most like about it. But it
isn't the same Buddhism I did my thesis on. It is Buddhism for the West,
if I may say so: often light and responsibility-free, litle dogma and
ritual, many ads for Zen cushions. :-) It isn't the strict and raja-Yoga
oriented doctrine of the ascetic Buddha with and his analytical, focussed,
and shrewd concentration. It is a "nice" magazine. I also think that one
can find in Tricycle a real worry about formulating "engaged" Buddhism;
there seems to be the awareness that this is a very old philosophy which
has the potential to reshape the world, but can't because not enough
people are paying attention to it. There is an interesting tension
between world-reformating versus individual focus... I ramble.

But those are just impressions I give, not well-reasoned opinions.

-J

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Jonah and Kari Winters
33 Endean Avenue / Toronto, Ontario / M4M-1W5 / (416) 461-3527

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 00:13:32 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels

Steve Marshall,

> "Richard, if you or anyone else can find out which National Spiritual
Assembly is carrying out Baha'i review on Fozdar's book, I'd be happy
to forward Bruce's evidence (with Bruce's permission)." <

It is interesting to watch the various responses to my criticisms of
Fozdar. It seems the charge of plagiarism does not sit well others, and
certainly two footnotes does not constitute a huge breech of ethics.
Actually, had the other sins of the book been not as bad as they are I
would not be that concerned about it. (There is another example I can
give of him using without citation a sentence from another book.) Are
these a big deal? Probably not too big of a deal by themselves. What
they are, however, are parts of a whole, parts of a picture. Sloppy
scholarship, lack of respect for the source material and a lack of respect

If you are serious about sending on to the appropriate NSA what I have
to say about Fozdar's work, give me a week to two, and I'll give you
a lengthy, carefully written and documented critique of Fozdar's two
books.

I am gratified and pleased to see Baha'is take seriously my concerns
AMITABHA HAS APPEARED, it was a bit of a shock that such a book

Bruce

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 01:21:26 -0500 (EST)
From: Jonah Winters
To: talisman
Subject: Joke's on me

This one must be for the talisman humor files. I wrote that "There is an
interesting tension between world-reformating versus individual focus..."
I think I've been sitting with my word-processor too long!! (And I didn't
even spell my misspelling right )

:-)

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Jonah and Kari Winters
33 Endean Avenue / Toronto, Ontario / M4M-1W5 / (416) 461-3527

=END=

From: Alethinos@aol.com
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 02:21:51 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Patterns and a future?

It should be quite obvious by now for anyone who has been reading Talisman
that there is a reoccurring pattern. And it has to do with an agenda. Now
that in itself is not such a  surprise, nor is it necessarily a bad thing per
se.

This is a pattern that has been discussed actually. We are all quite familiar
with it. We are seeing it now in the mini-drama between Juan and Richard.
Absent are a number of the other players. Some for obvious reasons. Juan is
up there on the stage now giving solid diction to his part which is wearing,
I am afraid, a bit thin.

I would say that the other role, being filled these past few nights by a
relative newcomer to the stage, Mr. Richard Logan is also one well known to
the audiance. It too is a part of this pattern.

The pattern is of course the continued harping on the war crimes of  Wilmette
and all those even remotely associated (or accused of being so) with that
spot. In the eight or nine months I have been on this list I have not seen
any significant change in the pattern of attack. The same accusations have
been made repeatedly. Please note: I am in no way making a statement as to
the validity of the charges - indeed some if not most may be right on target.
I have been more than forthcoming with my own experiences of censorship and
tyranical behavior. I know it too well.

And I have said repeatedly that this issue - of abuse of power - is not
really _the_ issue at all. Most everyone on the list who has been
contributing knows this has and still is happening. Many of us have
experienced it first hand. There have been gigabits of discussion on ways to
remedy this.

And in all that something curious has unfolded. Another element of the
overall pattern is that immediately after the accusations fly and refly and
re-re-fly a hue and cry is raised. We should storm the Bastille. Baha'u'llah
and Abdu'l-Baha' were solid supporters of the American and British
governments - not just various elements of the constitutions and
democratically operational procedures of those governments, but of the
governments. The Faith is actually supposed to mirror the U.S. government.
The Faith is supposed to adapt itself to liberal-democratic fashions
(whatever they may be at the time.)

Anyone opposed to this is a fascist pig. Well not really a fascist you know.
But like a fascist in a way. Not that we would want to actually call someone
_a_ fascist but they are taking a fascist line sort of. Perhaps unwittingly?
Well not so. But anyone not believing as we do is one, that much is clear,
right?

Now the rest of the pattern is just as obvious. I have not, I should say,
seen anyone, well save a few dear naive souls that have now gone off to
spread the gospel (don't you know) among the heathen of Fresno who have been
singing some Baha'i version of God Bless Wilmette here. Again many here have
acknowledged the critical need for rapid maturity of the Faith. And
repeatedly there has been the suggestion that if we sould come together and
begin a real discussion; a discourse on how to truly change things. The
historonics constantly displayed by those doing the wailing and weeping is
that the only way to really change things is to mimic the Old World Order
pattern: revolt, petition, cast doubt, rail against, etc. Then come the
suggestions that if we were just more like the U.S. government, if the Faith
would just adopt various liberal-democratic ideals and enshrine them all our
troubles would be solved.

This is followed by a refutation of this thought and suggestions that we all
of us explore the unexplored territory of the Faith to forge a New Way. Sure
there are democratic first principles that are valuable. The Central Figures
have pointed them out and the Universal House of Justice has discussed them
in a number of publications. And we are a long way from exhausting all the
jewels of the Old World Order that must be kept and cherished. This has been
repeatedly said also. From this point a true wilingness on the part of those
doing the complaining is needed because to really explore these ideas fully
requires that some degree of unity of thought prevail.

And usually when the pattern reaches this point the Wailers (no reference to
the immortal Bob Marley is intended here) become silent. They wait. The
pattern on Talisman then slips into various other discussions - some of
usually lasts for about ten days to two weeks.

Then the wailing begins again. Any of a number of things can start it.

My question is this: how long are we going to repeat this useless cycle,
waste all this incredible energy when we really could be solving the problem?
When are we going to let go of our petty little agendas which are fueled by
the inability to just let go; to look beyond the damn fools causing the
headaches and realize that they are not the root of the problem - they are
not the disease, they are just another symptom.

How long will the Master have to wait before He sees some real
revolutionaries arise in this land?

jim harrison

Alethinos@aol.com

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 00:01:45 -0800 (PST)
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Salutations,

Forgive me for my unfair use of bandwidth, but this seems to be the best
way to reach this information.

Does any of the dear talismanians happen to have William Hatcher's email or

Thanks and take care.

Safa
think@ucla.edu

=END=

From: Geocitizen@aol.com
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 04:52:25 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: illiberal liberalism

Not long ago, Sen asked me to be more specific in my claim that there are
definite conflicts between Baha'i principle and the body of theory underlying
liberalism (liberalism in the sense of Western liberal-democratic culture,
not that of leftist social-democratic ideology which it most often carries in
popular usage).

It is certainly easy to believe that the Baha'i Writings fully support
liberal theory, simply because of confusion in the usage of words.  Just as
the words "liberalism" and "conservatism" have meanings in political theory
that are completely distinct from what is meant in their incoherent popular
usage, there are likewise numerous words such as "rights" which have
different philosophical foundations in the Baha'i Writings than they do in
the body of liberal culture and law.

A valuable groundwork for exploring these foundational differences has been
begun in some of Jim Harrison's postings, but the recent wrangling between
Juan Cole and Richard Logan over the proper degree of emphasis on rights in
the Baha'i community affords us an opportunity to further examine what these
differences imply.

I think the most important differences between a Baha'i conception of rights
and a liberal conception of rights may lie in the different views the two
systems have of human corruption and perfectibility.

Liberalism views the individual as not only the fundamental unit of society,
but as being the only unit that actually exists.  Family, community, ethnic
group, nation-state, even the human race as a whole do not actually exist in
liberal theory -- they are merely intellectual constructs which individuals
employ for their own self-interest.  These group units owe any existence they
do have to individuals' belief in them and desire that they exist.

In practical experience, of course, humans are communal beings as much or
even more than they are solitary beings -- no newborn infant can survive a
philosophy of "rugged individualism," for example -- but liberalism retains
the core idea of the atomistic individual who wants nothing more than to be
free of all constraints from groups or other individuals.

Hence, "rights" in their liberal foundations are usefully defined as areas of
individual immunity from communal interests, and that is precisely how they
function in any liberal system, no matter how its government mixes its other
elements of democracy, aristocracy, bureaucracy, monarchy, etc.  That is,
rights gain their importance because liberalism views government and
community as necessary evils, which each individual supports only because in
their absence, individual rights would be ground underfoot by the
unrestrained violence of individuals' competition against one another -- the
Hobbesian "war of all against all".  And even in civil society, this state of
conflict does not end, it is simply managed so that its violence is under
control.

Although liberalism views humans as incorrigibly selfish and violent and
corrupt in their seeking of dominance over one another, it views them as
perfectible in their self-interest.  Thus, the ideal state toward which
liberalism strives is one in which individuals realize their self-interest is
best served by adherence to liberal principles, which means minimizing the
degree to which they interfere with each other -- i.e., maximizing their
respect for each other's rights.

In this sense, every liberal ideology views the best government as a
minimalist state.  They greatly differ in where the "minimum" lies, of course
-- for the libertarian, a minimalist state is drastically smaller than it is
for the social democrat -- but they share a tendency to view the securing of
a certain set of rights as the most important task of government, perhaps

Unfortunately, as the Baha'i teachings recognize, human beings are not
perfectible by appeal to their self-interest.  This is where liberalism
defeats itself, for not only does it seek the unattainable as its ideal
state, it does so by encouraging the very tendencies most likely to prevent
its citizens from reaching that state.  Rather than respecting one another's
rights as citizens, persons in liberal cultures tend to constantly fear for
their own rights and press conflicting rights-claims against one another and
against their governments.  (One tangible result of this is an American court
system so choked with a backlog of frivolous lawsuits that many just causes
languish because they have no other avenue for redress.)

The Baha'i Writings call upon governments to treat their citizens justly and
recognize their rights, but do not call upon citizens to lay incessant
rights-claims against their governments and communities.  This does not mean,
as some have feared, that Baha'is must support totalitarianism, or any other
form of tyrannical or exploitive government.

It means, as Richard has tried to point out, that a Baha'i theory of rights
must approach rights from a different foundation than liberalism's.

It means Baha'i principle sees the ideal of human perfectibility not in
self-interest, but in a reciprocated selflessness which achieves what
self-interest strives toward but cannot reach.  (As 'Abdu'l-Baha said:  "The
mystery of sacrifice is that there is no sacrifice.")  It means that Baha'i
communities -- and eventually, governments -- will respect rights not because
humans fear one other, as in liberal societies, but because they love one
another.  It means Baha'is must conceive of government and community not as
necessary evils, but as potential sources of creative empowerment for the
good of all.

It means that Baha'is even now, in less-than-perfect times, must strive to
conceive of rights as something individuals need in order to better
participate in a community of reciprocity and cooperation, rather than as
weapons which individuals need in their practice of politics as the
continuation of war by other means.

(Please note that I use the term "perfectibility" in a Platonic sense of a
tendential nature in which continuous progress is possible, rather than in
the sense of a final perfect state in which one will theoretically come to
rest.)

Such philosophical foundations may eventually support a system that is
basically liberal in its superstructure, such as Terry's Irfan Republic, but
there is little question in my mind that a reworked foundation is needed
before any system can be built that will not contain liberalism's
self-destructive flaws.

Then the noble goals of liberalism will find expression in the real world,
and not just in the hypothetical positions of political theorists.

Regards,
Kevin

=END=

From: Geocitizen@aol.com
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 05:35:07 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: intemperate responses

Esteemed Juan,

you wrote:

>4)  This business of throwing a tantrum and tearing down other people
>when they politely disagree with your postings does not become you.  Nor,
>I am afraid, will it protect your ideas from scrutiny or discussion.
>Good try, though.

Richard's response to you was intemperate, and may even have been a
"tantrum," but what you have written in reply demonstrates that one can be
intemperate and even downright nasty while still remaining quite polite in
one's diction and punctuation.

Perhaps Richard's emotional response has another meaning than the one you
imply.  Perhaps he is simply frustrated with a lack of progress in his
attempts to convey an accurate understanding of his ideas and intentions to
you.  Your implication that he became emotional with a conscious intent to
"protect [his] ideas from scrutiny or discussion" is intemperate, even if you
do put a smiley face two lines below it.  In fact, it may even verge on an
argument ad hominem, though of course I know you did not intend anything of
the kind.

But then, one need not *intend* to step on the toes of one's neighbor to
crunch down on them hard enough to put the poor chap in a good deal of pain.

Regards,
Kevin

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Sun, 11 Feb 1996 06:40:29 EST
Subject:       Thoughts at dawnlight

Thoughts at dawnlight from little quanta.

I've been thinking why I can feel the pain and the sufferings of
others. Why do I so deeply identify with those under-loved (not dog).
It is unimportant for me to know anyone face to face, but I can still
feel deeply their suffering and pain.
Here I am in this world. I could have been a fly, a snail, a blade of
grass, an ant a bird or fish. But, I am a human and there are some
expectations from me, to live in this world.
I fell in love with an Armenian as a young girl. It was expected of
me that I marry a moslem. I lived in a Greek neighbourhood while I was
a nine year old girl. My best friend was Sula. We played together and
laughed together. Our house was near the main Greek orthodox church
by the Golden Horn in Istanbul. Then, came the dreaded night.
September 7, 1955 two days before my youngest brother was born.
I was at a store buying school supplies (children do shop by
themselves  much more in Third World than they do here). I saw
policemen on their horses some commotions on the street. People were
running around frantically. I got so scared and ran home as fast as I
could. My father and uncle were getting ready to go out to the
streets. There was a man and his invalid mother (Greeks) living right
across from our apartment. They were so visible from our window.
People began to throw rocks at their window and I saw him franticaly
taking away his mother from the window away from the rocks.
There was a rumor that moslems were killed in a mosque in Salaniko.
So, people were out to get revenge. My father and uncle came home
with large tall candles taken away from the Orthodox church. They
seem so happy to get them Greeks. There was looting all over town.
Days later, I could no longer play with Sula. My dad made a map of
Cyprus with the turkish flag on it. All the men took drops of blood
from their fingers to paint the map with. Women did not. So, I told
my dad that I wanted him to prick my finger too. He said "you are
girl". So, I went to the kitchen and cut my thumb and showed him the
blood. I was gonna be equal (now I think so). So, they took my blood
too and paint the map. I was proud that I was brave like them.

But, I was so unhappy that I could no longer play with Sula.
Later, in my teenage years I began to question things. If, we
believed in Isa (Jesus) and they believed in Isa, why did we not like
them? It just did not make any sense to me whatsoever. I will not say
what happened. But, I remember in later years, I was told that the
reason I ended up
in America among the heathens is because I was punished for loving
them. See, I feel the pain of prejuice, rejection, unloving spirits
whether they inflict them or being inflicted by it. Whatever the
reason, it is not my place to judge people for who they are. I can
feel the painful effects of their actions deep inside my soul.
But, I still cannot judge them. I cannot identify with those who
willfully inflict pain. But, I can identify with their pain of
remorse.  I feel pain on talisman sometimes too. So, stop the hurt.

love,

quanta

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 15:50:33 +0100 (MET)
Subject: rights and maturity
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Richard,

it seems to me you are wanting to jump to the Most Great Peace
today, to live in the Kingdom of God without laying its
foundations. Yes, individual, social and institutional maturity is
required. But are any of these in any way possible with
institutionalized, and ultimately internalized, guarantees of rights?
Maturity does not just drop from heaven, it emerges from the
exercise of responsibility, which requires freedom to choose,
which requires a right to act autonomously. The right to be
wrong, do it wrong, generally make an unholy mess of things,
and learn from the experience is the foundation of maturity at
every level. And such rights must first be established in
legislation - in the case of the Baha'i administration in procedures
which are binding on assemblies in every case - i.e., they must

Would the setting up of just legislation, in accord
with the Divine laws which guarantee the happiness
of society and protect the rights of all mankind
and are an impregnable proof against assault--would
such laws, insuring the integrity of the members of society
and their equality before the law, inhibit their
prosperity and success?  SDC 14

To do otherwise is like asking the nations of the world to kindly
not press their own interests to the detriment of others, while
they know there can be no repercussions if they do. The nations
will not begin to grow towards real maturity - beyond the stage
of enlightened self-interest which has already been achieved to
some extent - *until* there is a 'binding treaty', a world court,
and a world police force. The same applies to the Baha'i
institutions vis-a-vis the individual: a community reaches a stage
of growth at which neither side can mature further until there is a
written charter for the good ordering of the relationship, a court
to ensure it is carried out, and sanctions to compel *both*
individuals and institutions to provide a little motivation.

If the country were built up, the roads repaired, the
lot of the helpless improved by various means, the poor
rehabilitated, the masses set on the path to progress,
the avenues of public wealth increased, the scope of
education widened, the government properly organized,
and the free exercise of the individual's rights, and the
security of his person and property, his dignity and good
name, assured--would all this be at odds with the character
of the Persian people?  Whatever is in conflict
with these measures has already been proved injurious,
in every country, and does not concern one locality
more than another. SDC 115

`Abdu'l-Baha refuted the arguments of those who said that Persia,
because of the superiority of the Persians, or because it was
within the Cause of God, had no need of the mechanisms of
good order which had proved effective among the westerners.
Cannot the same argument be applied to the Baha'is? If our
administration was set in order so that force is the servant of
justice, if the needs of the poor were recognized, the scope of
education widened (of which more soon), and the free exercise of
the individual's rights and - especially - the *security of his or
her dignity and good name were assured*, could this be at odds
with the character of the Baha'i Administrative Order? Have not
the opposites of these things - the neglect of social engagement,
free scope for maladministration, and the trampling of individual
rights - proven to be injurious to the Baha'i community in every
country where they have occurred?
It strikes me that the question is not whether institutional
guarantees of rights should be incorporated in the Baha'i
Administrative Order, but when? Such a development would be
premature in the Netherlands, where the community is tiny. The
rights exist, of course, but implicitly, without *yet* having an
institutional guarantor, in the form of a written charter and
judicial officers. Juan's point, if I have understood him correctly,
is that the American Baha'i community may well be ready. This
is in one sense a sign of maturity, but it is also true that the light
emerges from the darkest corner: perhaps the pain which the
American community has suffered is the necessary price to
demonstrate the necessity of this new organ in the Baha'i body
politic. No pain no gain.

BTW, did you notice the reference to maturity in the piece I
posted last week - and the association with the reformation of
religion and the working out of the spirit of modernism (a topic
on which Juan will have a great deal more to say in due
course :-D )

This reformation and renewal of the
fundamental reality of religion constitute the true and
outworking spirit of modernism,
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
the unmistakable light of the
world, the manifest effulgence of the Word of God, the divine
remedy for all human ailment and the bounty of eternal life to
all mankind. (Promulgation of Universal Peace, pages 438-439)

Sen
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sen McGlinn                           ph: 31-43-3216854
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: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 09:56:30 -0500 (EST)
From: jwalbrid
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Reality of social units

Re Kevin's comment that in liberal theory only individuals exist and
social units--family, etc.--have no objective existence, it should be
noted that in the usual Baha'i interpretation of progressive revelation,
spiritual laws--i.e., the laws relative to the individual--are thought to
be eternal, whereas social laws are seen as dependent on contemporary
conditions.  If so, social units would seem to have less reality than
individuals.  This makes sense since individuals are tangible, after
all.  (Back in his social historian period, I once irritated Juan by
insisting that social classes did not exist.)

The basic liberal insight, which a lot of the postmodernists agree with,
is that unduly reified social organizations tend to be used on behalf of
the interests of the powerful.  The point of rights theory is to give the
individual some recourse against the interests of the group or of the
ruler.  I think the lesson of the last century of democracy in America is
that a tolerable society requires rights guaranteed by law and duties
primarily imposed by religion.  If the fundamental basis of duties is
government, you get states like the Communist countries--i.e., the state
is founded by idealists and looks good on paper, but in practice it
grinds the individual underfoot.  If you don't have duties imposed by
religion or something else voluntary, you get a situation where every
individual is always trying to maximize his own interests without regard
to the larger interests of society--television run for advertisers on the
basis of ratings, for example, and no-fault divorce.

In short, individuals are protected from oppression by good laws, but
their characters are built by voluntary adherence to religion or the
equivalent.

John Walbridge

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 08:29:01 -0500
From: "Ahang Rabbani"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Fozdar

[This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII]

Bruce,

You wrote:

> It seems the charge of plagiarism does not sit well others, and certainly
> two footnotes does not constitute a huge breech of ethics. Actually, had
> the other sins of the book been not as bad as they are I would not be
> that concerned about it. (There is another example I can give of him
> using without citation a sentence from another book.) Are these a big
> deal? Probably not too big of a deal by themselves. What they are,
> however, are parts of a whole, parts of a picture. Sloppy scholarship,
> lack of respect for the source material and a lack of respect for the

It's been many years since I read Fozdar and am not a big fan (not
so much because of his book, but rather my focus on other things),
but I like to comment on your charge by cautioning against
possibility of imposing western scholarship values on Fozdar where
it may not be appropriate to do so.  Fozdar while trying to emulate
western style of scholarship (endless miles of footnotes, careful
source citation, protection against plagiarism, etc.), comes from a
culture where such concerns did not dominate their writings.  I'm
not an expert on Indian scholarship but in the middle eastern
literature, it is perfectly acceptable to find quotations from
another writer without any footnote, even large chunks of books are
quoted without naming the earlier author or his scholarship.  For
that matter, none of the classics has a single footnote and vast
majority have no source citation.  Therefore, the whole concept of
"footnoting" and plagiarism is foreign to ME's classical writing
(and to a large degree even to the modern works).

The idea of being "original" in writing is a western invention of
post-Romantic period.  In ME, one honors the earlier favorite,
great writers or artists by quoting or emulating their work and
this is not looked down as "sloppy scholarship", to the contrary,
the writer is honoring his audience by implying that his readers
are learned enough to know the sources, as well as honoring the
writer(s) being quoted.  The Central Figures of Baha'i Faith have
used this approached extensively, namely, quoting without
referencing from previous Sacred Literature or literary works.

Again, I don't know if the Middle Eastern practices may be extended
to India and Fozdar's generation, but wanted to point out that his
practice is very much norm in the middle east and Baha'i Sacred
Scripture and there is nothing "unethical" about it.

Having said all of this, while I don't know Jamshid Fozdar
personally, I know enough of him to know that he is a truly
remarkable man with unusual dedication to betterment of the world.
His contributions to his community will be remembered long after
he is passed from the scene.  As such, I for one would be very
hesitant to mar the name of this great humanitarian just because he
missed a footnote.

best regards, ahang.

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 09:42 CDT
From: Robert Moldenhauer
Subject: THanks, but one correction
To: JWALBRID@indiana.edu, TALISMAN@indiana.edu

John,

Thanks for the nice article, there is only one erro that I can see.  He is
Arabic is "huwwa," there is no way to spell "huva" in Arabic, the letter "v"
just doesn't exist in Arabic, it only exists in Persian!

Dariush Lamie asked that I post the article written for the Baha'i Encyclopedia
about Ayyam-i-Ha.  I am happy to do so, although it is not terribly long.
john walbridge
*******
Ayya'm-i-Ha': The Intercalary Days

The Ayya'm-i-Ha', literally  the days of H', are the four or five intercalary
days inserted before the last month of the Baha''i' calendar.  Since the
nineteen months of nineteen days in the Badi'  calendar would yield a year four
and a quarter days shorter than the solar year, some additional days are needed
to complete the solar year of 365 or 366 days.  The Ba'b did not specify where
the additional days were to be placed.  In the Kita'b-i-Aqdas Baha''u'lla'h
instructed that they be celebrated before the month of  Ala'', the last month
of the Baha''i' year and the month of fasting, and that they not be included
within any month.  He further specified that they during the Ayya'm-i-Ha' the
Baha''i's should  provide good cheer for themselves, their kindred and, beyond
them, the poor and needy, and with joy and exultation to hail and glorify their
Lord, to sing His praise and magnify His Name' (KA, para.  16). The
Ayya'm-i-Ha' are thus celebrated with parties, meetings, dinners, gift-giving,
as well as giving to charity,  good deeds' and the like. There is a specific
prayer for the Ayya'm-i-Ha'.

The numerical value of the letter ha' or  H' is five, so the term may
literally mean  the five days'.  Ha' is also an abbreviation of huva, Arabic
for  He', referring to God.  Thus Baha''u'lla'h refers to these days as
manifestations of Ha'' -- i.e. sacred days.  Finally, Ha' is associated with
the names of both the Ba'b and Baha''u'lla'h -- ba'b having a numerical value
of five and ba' and ha' being the root letters of Baha'.

*--------------------------------------------------------------------------*
|  Robert C. Moldenhauer            Archaeologist (Middle East)            |
|  Computer Programmer              Water Resource Management Specialist   |
|  Wisc. Dept. of Natural Resources +1 (608) 264-8971                      |
|  101 South Webster St., Box 7921  RMoldenhauer@macc.wisc.edu (internet)  |
|  Madison, Wis 53707 U.S.A.        RMoldenhauer@wiscmacc      (bitnet)    |
*--------------------------------------------------------------------------*
Certe, Toto, sentio nos in Kansate non iam adesse!

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 09:57:36 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Patterns and a future?
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: , "Talisman"

Dear Jim,
Thank you!  I t is very lonely to say the things you said--the moderate
view doesn't seem to have many supporters on Talisman.  Perhaps this is
so because "Intellectuals"  for the most part are ingrained in a liberal
democratic view that fears the banning of "Huckleberry Fin" and  "The
Catcher in the Rye", and a host of other inequities.  These kinds of
problems are very real and exist within the Baha'i community along with
many other things.  Members of our forum are contending that liberal
democracy IS the Baha'i Faith. I JUST DON'T THINK, AT THIS POINT, I CAN
VALIDATE, THE SIGNIFICANCE THAT SOME PLACE ON THESE QUESTIONS (LIBERAL
DEMOCRATIC VALUES) AS THEY PERTAIN TO THE BAHA'I FAITH.  The idea that
the NSA was going to shut down this forum, I believe, was unlikely, if
analyzed.  As one can see--here we are discussing what we feel is
pertinent.  We are not sparing anyone--but in my view some bounds have
been crossed.

The idea that the Baha'i Faith offers a "New Way" as Jim tersely put it
is scriptural beyond any dispute.  Yet if the mass of Baha'is don't even
know the names of their NSA members how are we really to test the
efficacy of anything on an administrative level?  At this point, the
fetus of the Baha'i world order should be treated with great care and
love.  Prayers should be said for it.  Words of noble encouragement
offered.  If a young lady found that the fetus within her was being
diagnosed as growing improperly she would not become critical of it, or
blame it, or say cruel things about it.  She would take steps through
love and nurture and sustain it.  She would seek the highest advise to
bring about its healthy birth.  I know--because I married such a woman.
I believe were are all in agreement about our ultimate aims.

PS  I  am rereading "The Secret of Divine Civilization"

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: "Mark A. Foster"
Subject: Reality of social units
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 10:00:57 -0600 (CST)

To: talisman@indiana.edu

John -

The position advocated by Emile Durkheim, which has been ignored by
some of his detractors, is that *both* the group and the individual are
real. Although he believed that society, through its collective
conscience (or consciousness), has a real existence, and he chided those
sociologists whom he felt had psychologized sociology, he was also, as a
good post-revolutionary Frenchman, concerned with preserving individual
freedom. Therefore, Durkheim recognized the strengths of both social
nominalism and social realism.

Conceived of this way, although individuals exist, they are
*dependent* on, not *independent* of, the social structure. IOW, the
collective conscience (the social facts of *morality*) constrains our
behavior, but it does not completely determine it. For this reason,
Durkheim was concerned that society becomes neither too integrative
(altruistic) nor too disintegrative (egoistic) and neither too
regulatory (or fatalistic) nor too free of regulation (anomic). Each
semester, when I try explaining this concept to my Introduction to
Sociology and Social Problems students, they have great difficulty with
it - until I give them some illustrations.

To the Light,

Mark (Foster)

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 10:42:40 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Reality of social units
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "John Walbridge" , "Talisman"

>The basic liberal insight, which a lot of the postmodernists agree with,
>is that unduly reified social organizations tend to be used on behalf of
>the interests of the powerful.  The point of rights theory is to give the
>individual some recourse against the interests of the group or of the
>ruler.  I think the lesson of the last century of democracy in America is
>that a tolerable society requires rights guaranteed by law and duties
>primarily imposed by religion.  I

Dear John,

Thank you for the gracious lesson in civics,  but I think, possibly,
unbeknownced, you are preaching to the converted or further those who
have grown up in this very fight you speak of.

I, for one, opposed the war early on in Vietnam and there was a lot of
discussion on the rightful way it was to be stopped--in fact we hardly
spoke of anything else.  Growing up in Berleley and seeing the Free
Speech Movement first hand was an education in itself.  I stood on
Telegraph Avenue as Mario Savio made a speech while running for mayor.  I
saw the tanks and light artilary that blocked the entrance to the
University.  I remember the struggle of Lenny Bruce.  I knew members of
the "Diggers" and one whom I taught the Faith to who later became a
Baha'i.  I remember the firing of Clark Kerr by the board of regents.  I
remember Caesar Chavez and the "grape boycott".  I was the only caucasian
person along with another who also became a Baha'i to defend and then
join the Black Student Union in my high school. I had acquantances in the
weather underground and one friend who will remain nameless had her
picture in the post office as part of the FBI's ten most wanted list, in
connection with revolutionary activities, for at least a decade and I
still don't know what happen to that wonderful soul.  In other words,  I
understand brother!

We are for the most part on this forum--artists, intellectuals,
concerned citizens, ex-hippie revolutionaries, educators and essentially
members a a higher literate class of whom the Master has said, "...the
honor and distiction of the individual consist in this, that he among all
the world's multitudes should become a source of social good." (The
Secret of Divine Civilization p. 2).

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Sun, 11 Feb 96 19:35:24+030
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: dpeden@imul.com (Don Peden)
Subject: unsubscribe

Dear Friends:

Due to committments, I can no longer spend the time reading all the
postings.  When things settle down for us a bit, I'll give a listen.  Thanks
for allowing me to participate,

Love,

Bev.

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 11:53:23 EWT
From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
Subject: various things
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear friends,  thanks for all the warm messages regarding our son John.  I am
happy to report that he is managing quite nicely.  He is taking the whole thing
in stride and following his diet and schedule quite meticulously.  As he told
his nurse, "at least I had a happy childhood."   Now, if I may brag for a
moment - he just came home from Indianapolis last night where he and his high
school team competed in the Academic Decathalon State Tournament.  His team won
so they are going off to Atlanta in April for the national competition.  He has
won the gold medal for best in his class.  Not bad for a kid who just got out
of the hospital.  Of course, John is the one who takes after his father.
Nathaniel inherited my genes exclusively.  Consequently, when reports about him
appear on Talisman they will sound more like Derek and Burl's accounts of my
behavior at conferences.

I am back on Talisman but have not been able to follow it very closely.  I do
want to comment on the debate about Fozdar's book on Buddhism.  Reading Bruce's
comments and his excerpts from the book, I felt I recognized the style of this
book only too well.  It sounds like the type of thing that certain people with
scholarly pretensions write about Islam and Muslims from time to time.  These
books often become very popular because Muslims are a group that we are allowed
to hate - especially Arabs.  So, if we can find someone to help us justify our
antipathy for these dirty, icky people whom we don't understand, then we
applaud him.  Sorry, I have no patience for such books or for such authors.  As
for this guy being on Talisman when his book is attacked, that is nonsense.
Book reviews - some of them scathing - are published all the time.  The author
isn't on the airwaves then to refute the criticism.  He can defend himself in
writing through an appropriate forum.  If this guy couldn't take the heat, he
shouldn't have written such a book.  If he had to write, he should have written
a cook book.

As for the issue of human rights, I don't think it is a matter of saying that
individual Baha'is are not concerned with humanity.  It is that we as a
religious group have not stood up and stuck our necks out for the rights of
human beings.  We haven't been vocal on this topic except when it concerned
Baha'is.  I heard an interesting feature on the radio yesterday afternoon about
Catholicism in South America.  The Church is losing ground there fast since the
Pope squelched the liberation theology movement.  The Church is being
associated with the rich and the poor are becoming Protestants!  (I take refuge
in God!)  I don't see how we can be much influence in this world if we seem to
be supporting the status quo.  The status quo is not working for the betterment
of the world at Linda

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 09:10:32 -0800 (PST)
From: David M Simmons
To: Juan R Cole
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Tricycle: The Buddhist Review & Rights

On Sun, 11 Feb 1996, Juan R Cole wrote:

> Also, the self-description of this magazine caught my eye:
>
> "Tricycle is the independent voice of Buddhism in America . . . [It] is
> non-dogmatic and non-sectarian . . . Tricycle looks at
> our world from a Buddhist perspective.  But we don't offer you simple
> doubt.  We investigate controversial issues."
>
> I admired these sentiments a good deal.  And then I got to thinking that
> no Baha'i magazine could describe itself in these terms.  There cannot be
> an "independent" voice of the Baha'i faith because of a community culture
> of control from above and because of mechanisms like prepublication
> censorship ("Review").  The typical Baha'i use of the word "Covenant" to
> mean "conformism and ultra-orthodoxy" means that the community finds it
> difficult to tolerate, much less nourish, a non-dogmatic and
> non-sectarian viewpoint.  Difficult questions and controversial issues
> are pretty much out of the question.

Juan,
Isn't Buddhism trying to regain a foothold by making itself
appealing to the West? Wouldn't this be the same for any other "world
religions"?
The Baha'i Faith, on the other hand, is only just emerging from
obscurity and struggling to maintain some sort of cohesion and unity. Our
unity of thought and undertakings is still feeble, globally, as we are
spread so thin. The Covenant helps to maintain a unity of thought and
undertakings. There is a balance here just as we need a balance
throughout the world.
I believe we are very much conditioned by our culture and this is
still very much reflected in our Baha'i communities and as individuals.
Accusing the Faith of not measuring up to our cultural mindset does not
benefit the Faith, and accusing the use of the "Covenant" as a way to
control others is unfair. Plenty of Baha'is are out there asking
Aren't we still at the stage where presenting the Sacred Writings
as representative of the Faith is preferable to magazines with opinions

cheers
David Simmons
Rogers High School, poorest one in Spokane County, WA

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 96 2:14:59 JST
From: "Stephen R. Friberg"
To: "Dan Orey"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu, DWA100F@eagle.cc.odu.edu, gjertsen@harborside.com,
103275.1472@compuserve.com, slynch@interserv.com,
JFMALARET@ucdavis.edu, gwatts@freenet.edmonton.ab.ca,
steve.zakharias@m.cc.utah.edu
Subject: Re: Genders Smenders

Dear Dan:

Great posting!  You've got it correct, I think.

Steve F.

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 11:27:01 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Fozdar

Ahang Rabbani,

> 'Again, I don't know if the Middle Eastern practices may be
extended  to India and Fozdar's generation, but wanted to point out that
his  practice is very much norm in the middle east and Baha'i Sacred
Scripture and there is nothing "unethical" about it.' <

> 'Having said all of this, while I don't know Jamshid Fozdar
personally, I know enough of him to know that he is a truly
remarkable man with unusual dedication to betterment of the world.
His contributions to his community will be remembered long after
he is passed from the scene.  As such, I for one would be very
hesitant to mar the name of this great humanitarian just because he
missed a footnote.' <

I have read works by other Indians of Fozdar's generation, but they
were scholars and I think that may be the difference. I am well aware
of the cultural and time differences concerning the question of
plagiarism. And I'll grant that the in comparison with the bulk of the
book the plagiarism is minor, not only the two footnotes, but as I look
at the material again three others on pages 239-40 from the same source.
It may not be that big of a deal by itself, and it may not be that big of
deal in terms of cultural differences, and it may not be that big of a deal
at all, but as I said it is, albeit a small part, a part of a picture.

What is a big deal -- a very big deal -- which I would have a very hard
time accepting as an acceptable cultural difference is his passing off as
Buddhist text material that isn't. And as one looks at the material in
question, what is most important is that there is no way that he could
have not known what he was doing. This is not insignificant material,
either in the amounts and in the import for Fozdar's arguments.
However you cut it, this is dishonest.

Now, Fozdar may be a good parent, nice to his dog, generous with his
talents and resources for the betterment of the Baha'i community and
beyond, but in as much as there are those who take Fozdar's books
seriously trying to understand Buddhism and Baha'i he has done damage.

Bruce

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 11:43:37 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: rights and maturity
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: , "Talisman"

> But are any of these in any way possible with
>institutionalized, and ultimately internalized, guarantees of rights?
>Maturity does not just drop from heaven, it emerges from the
>exercise of responsibility, which requires freedom to choose,
>which requires a right to act autonomously. The right to be
>wrong, do it wrong, generally make an unholy mess of things,
>and learn from the experience is the foundation of maturity at
>every level. And such rights must first be established in
>legislation - in the case of the Baha'i administration in procedures
>which are binding on assemblies in every case - i.e., they must

Dear Sen,

I'm sorry you feel I'm such a dunderhead,  and think I'm some other
person you know who thinks this way.  I'm just not that guy.  I've been
unsuccessfully trying to explain this.  But it is seems if I don't adopt
the orthodox view of Talisman I must be that guy.  I can see you feel
you've got this figured out.  I'm withholding judgment on many things you
consider settled.  If you find that troubling I don't know what to do
about it.  As I grew as a Baha'i I realized that it was better for me to
keep an open mind, weight the facts very carefully, pray about them, put
questions to my heart, be as sincere as possible, see the other point of
view and attempt to through a phenomenological process to develop an
evolving understanding.

I also feel it is incumbent upon me as a serious Baha'i to resist to a
certain extent the understandings of others in a wise and gracious manner
due to Baha'u'llah's statement:

"The best of all things in My sight is Justice;  turn not away therefrom
if thou desirest Me, and  neglect it not that I may confide in thee.  By
its aid though shalt see with thine own eyes and not through the eyes of
others, and shalt know of thine own knowledge and not through the
knowledge of thy neighbor."  ( Hidden Words #2 Arabic)

I have consistently defended a persons right to their understanding for
this very reason.  On the other hand,  I believe it very important to  I
try to (and I put the emphasis on TRY) and see, as much as I can, in the
message of the other person; because no matter how much I may disagree,
everyone has something to add to the other persons understanding.  In a
way this may also seem dangerous, since a little knowledge is a dangerous
thing.  But I believe if we follow the Master's example we will more and
more come to this method of interaction with our fellow human beings.

If you have any other doubts about my viability as a Baha'i thinker and
person please put your questions to me.  Sometimes, I will, as any human

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 13:35:17 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: David M Simmons
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: The Baha'i Faith, rights, and thinking

David:  I appreciate your message in regard to my complaints that
there is no independent, critical Baha'i magazine, in which you argue, as
I understand it, that such enterprises must be suspended until the Faith
is established, and in the meantime we should concentrate on promulgating
the scriptures in their true form.  I think probably a majority of the
community would agree with you, and certainly most of those with
decision-making authority would.

I look at things differently, and it is entirely possible that I look at
them incorrectly.  There is nothing I can do about that, however, since
they are my views, have been tested by long experience, and until they
can be disproved to me by reason or experience, they will remain my views.

First of all, I think the standard Baha'i view begs a number of
questions.  Have we *really* understood the Writings so that we can
present them in their pure form?  Would not our understanding of them be
improved by knowing the original languages, the historical contexts, the
nuances, and by establishing a "hermeneutical circle" where the various
texts comment on one another?  When Baha'u'llah, in the Tablet of the
World, complains that the people of Iran have been deprived by a tyrannical
government of "usu:l va qanu:n", of due process and the rule of law, what
does He mean by that?  The current translation does not even convey that
He is concerned with these things.  Would it not help to know that a
reformist magazine had been started in 1890 by an expatriate in London,
and smuggled back into Iran, called Qanu:n (Law, implying the rule of
civil law)?  Would it not help to know that Baha'u'llah and `Abdu'l-Baha
agreed with 19th century Qajar reformers like Mirza Yusuf Khan, who
argued that a rule of law was sine qua non for progress?  Would it not
help to know that this Tablet was written in 1891 in the wake of widespread
popular protests in Iran, called the Tobacco Revolt, when the Shah by fiat
arbitrarily gave away to an English speculator a monopoly on the marketing
of Iranian tobacco, potentially hurting farmers, merchants, and financiers
in that country?

I just give one example, of how it might be possible to understand the
Tablet of the World and its emphasis on the rule of law and parliamentary
governance, more deeply.  Yet this sort of understanding *cannot* be
achieved in a closed-information regime, of prepublication censorship and
emphasis on literalism, such as the Baha'i community has constructed for
itself.  Only an open-information regime, of free inquiry and the
application of critical reason to the study of the Faith can yield these
fruits.

I went into my current field of study because the beloved Guardian, in
academic study of comparative religions and Islam.  But I find that the
maze and labyrinth of regulations erected by the post-Guardian Baha'i
community would make it impossible for me to actually carry through the
Guadian's charge if I paid them too much attention.  You can't conduct
academic research under conditions of censorship.  You can't make
progress on translation of the Writings if you can't disseminate
provisional translations in order to get feedback.  And if the current
regulations are really interfering with an activity the Guardian so
highly valued, then it seems to me that there is something very wrong
with them.  But you're not even, in mainstream Baha'i culture, allowed to
protest publicly bad policy so that it has a prayer of being changed.

A few persons on Talisman have indicated that they thought comments on
this list sometimes "crossed the line."  In my world, of reasoned
inquiry, there can be no "line."  Erect a line and you close off entire
worlds of possible investigation (in one of which the right answer might
lie, so that you are on a fool's errand as long as it is closed off).  Oh,
sure, you shouldn't be rude (though this rule is often insisted on most
strongly by those who most egregiously break it), you shouldn't be
libellous, you shouldn't ignore evidence relevant to
an argument.  But attempts to close down a rationally-supportable line of
inquiry will only result in bad science, and betray the promise the Baha'i
faith once held out of being a religion where science and religion go hand
in hand.  As it is, I don't have the slightest doubt what Baha'is would do
to Galileo if they thought his astronomical discoveries contradicted
their scriptures.

cheers   Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 14:04:10 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: Geocitizen@aol.com
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: illiberal liberalism

Kevin:  I think it is a mistake to set up an opposition between liberal
rights and the Baha'i philosophy of human nature.

First of all, we do not have a single book examining the Baha'i
philosophy of human nature, and I am not myself convinced that we know so

Second, human rights can be supported within more than one philosophical
framework.  It needn't be contract-theory, classical Liberalism, though
protections for the individual were very precious to Baha'u'llah and
`Abdu'l-Baha and Shoghi Effendi.

We also do not have large amounts of writing about the view in the Baha'i
scriptures of individual human rights.  We are at the beginning of
thinking about these things.  But the paper I am writing on human rights
in the Baha'i Writings has convinced me that they powerfully support
individual rights.  The power of their support is sometimes blunted by
poor translations, as with Secret of Divine Civilization and Tablet of
the World (not to mention Ishraqat).

Finally, I am a pragmatist.  I know for a fact that the current Baha'i
system allows abuses of power.  These are proving virtually impossible to
correct.  The political culture of the community is such that the very
possibility that such abuses could exist seems ruled out for a lot of
people, which makes it all the more difficult to address them.  Further,
evidence and case studies of abuses are carefully suppressed and their
dissemination for public discussion would in and of itself constitute
grounds for administrative expulsion.  Thus, the existence of abuses is
made to a) seem impossible and b) be impossible to prove, and anyone raising
the question can be summarily dismissed.  I think if one wanted to know
why the Baha'i faith in the US has been virtually numerically and
culturally stagnant for a decade and a half, that the answers lie in our
system and are structural.  I admit that I do not have the slightest idea
how to address these problems structurally.  But at least having an open
arena of discourse such as Talisman allows them to be broached and discussed.

cheers   Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 14:15:17 EWT
From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
Subject: wailing
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Jim, I am sorry you think that these discussions are all a waste of time.
Could you tell us where you DO find productive discussions of issues in the
Faith?  Perhaps I am lacking in your capacity, but I have found Talisman to be
the only Baha'i forum where I can speak.  Because of Talisman and my
association with people who also enjoy some semblance of freedom, I feel far
less alienated from Baha'is than I did before its inception.

If you grow tired of the debates, if the problems posed here don't have easy
solutions - or should I say solutions that we find ourselves able to implement
because we have no power to do so - this is hardly our fault.  Nor is it, to my
mind, any reason that we should shut up.  How many thinkers have written and
spoken for years and years before any significant group was inclined to listen?

I think the appropriate question to ask is, why is the debate that goes on on
Talisman so frightening to so many people?

Linda

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 12:23:02 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: From San Jose to Bosch

Dear Talizens--

Could all those people coming to the Mysticism conference who arrive in San
Jose on Friday February 23 between the hours of 12:00 noon to 4:00pm
please e-mail me asap. We need to organize a car-pool and especially a
place to meet in the San Jose airport. Also, would one or two of the
persons arriving earlier, and who are planning to come up to Bosch with
the rest of the group from the airport, volunteer to make a sign or
placard. Thanx.

Nima

**************************************************************
* Paradox is a characteristic of truth. What communis opinio *
* has of truth is surely no more than an elementary deposit  *
* of generalizing partial understanding, related to truth    *
* even as sulphurous fumes are to lightning.                 *
*                                                            *
* --From the correspondence of Count Paul von Wartenburg     *
*   and Wilhelm Dilthey                                      *
**************************************************************

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 13:29:14 -0700 (MST)
From: steve zakharias
To: Dan Orey
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu, DWA100F@eagle.cc.odu.edu, gjertsen@harborside.com,
103275.1472@compuserve.com, slynch@interserv.com,
JFMALARET@ucdavis.edu, gwatts@freenet.edmonton.ab.ca
Subject: Re: Genders Smenders

Dan...

Thank you for your note and encouragement. I hope that all the friends
will someday think along these lines.

Couldn't have said it better myself!

Zak

=END=

Subject: FYI: Indigenous Religious Traditions (fwd)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu, Bahai-st@johnco.cc.ks.us
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 15:46:34 -0500 (EST)
From: "Donald Zhang Osborn"

Allah'u'abha!  The attached may be of interest to some.  Baha'i would
seem to have something significant to contribute to this conference...
__________________________________________DZO______osborndo@pilot.msu.edu
Forwarded message:
Date:         Sat, 10 Feb 1996 08:18:01 GMT-5
From: H-AFRICA---Mel Page
To: Multiple recipients of list H-AFRICA

Date:           10 Feb 1996
From:           African Studies Center, Michigan State University

Beyond "Primitivism." Indigenous Religious Traditions and Modernity is the
title of an interdisciplinary conference that will be sponsored by the
African-American and African Studies, and the Religious Studies Programs of
the University of California at Davis, to be held March 28 - 31, 1996.
Participants will include scholars in religion, anthropology, Native
American studies, and area studies.

The conference is designed in a broad sense to stimulate reflection on the
way religious studies and other disciplines situate indigenous traditions
within their understanding of the world.  Contact: Jacob K. Olupona,
African-American and African Studies, University of California at Davis,
Davis, CA 95616.  Phone: (916) 752-1548.  Fax (916)752-9704.

--

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 09:54:56 +1300 (NZDT)
To: jwalbrid , talisman@indiana.edu
From: robert.johnston@stonebow.otago.ac.nz (Robert Johnston)
Subject: Re: Reality of social units

Dear John,
For what it is worth, I thought your letter very good.  I have
been away for a time, and am back only as a near-mute lurker, because my
work obligations are pretty heavy.  Greetings to all..

One cheeky thought. It is said that to not be a socialist in youth is to
lack heart, and to not be a conservative in maturity is to lack brains.  Is
there a "use by" instruction on liberalism?  ;-}

Robert.

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 21:04:23 +0000
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: S.N.Lambden@newcastle.ac.uk (Stephen Lambden)
Subject: *Lawh-i tibb* ("Tablet of Medicine") Pt.II Prov. Trans.

**PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION OF THE *LAWH-I TIBB* ("TABLET OF MEDICINE") OF
BAHA'U'LLAH**

Khazeh Fananapazir & Stephen Lambden

I

Revealed unto a Physician, upon him be the Glory of God!
He is God, the One Who is Most Knowing

The Tongue of the Ancient of Days uttereth that which shall be a
sufficient Treasure for the wise ones in the absence of physicians.

II

[1] Say: O People! Eat not except after having hungered and drink not after
retiring to sleep  (al-huju`). [2] How beneficial is exercise when one['s
stomach] is empty for through  it the limbs become strengthened; and how
dark a calamity is exercise when one['s stomach] is full! [3] Do not avoid
medical treatment (al-`ilaj) when thou hast need of it but abandon it when
thy constitution hath been restored (istiqamat). [4] Do not commence a meal
except
after full digestion [of the previous meal] and swallow not save after the
completion of chewing. [5] Treat an illness firstly with nutrients (or
foods, aliments,  aghdhiya)  and proceed not [immediately] unto medications
(adwiyat).  [6] If that which thou desirest resulteth from elemental
nutrients (al-mufradat) refrain from the compound treatments
(al-murakkabat). [7] Abandon medication (al-dawa')  when thou art healthy
but take hold of it when thou hast need thereof.  [8] If foods of opposing
disposition (diddan)   are available at table, do not mix them; under such
circumstances content thyself with but one of them. [9] Commence first with
the light food  (al-raqiq)  before moving on to the heavier one (al-ghaliz)
and with the liquid before the solid. [10] To intake one food which
becomes superimposed upon another (idkhal al-ta`am `ala ta`am) is
dangerous; be warned of this matter.

III

[1]  When thou wouldst commence eating, start by mentioning My Most
Glorious Name (al-abha) and finish it with the Name of Thy Lord, the
Possessor of the Throne above and of the earth below. [2] And when thou
hast finished eating, walk a little to settle thy meal. [3] That
[foodstuff] which is hard to chew; the same is forbidden unto those
possessed of intelligence. Thus doth the Supreme Pen command thee. [4] Eat
a little in the morning for this is as a
lamp to the body. [5] Eschew harmful habits [i.e. addictive substances
al-i`ada al-mudirra) for they truly, are a calamity for created beings. [6]
Counter disease by utilizing established means (bi'l-asbab). This utterance
is the decisive command in this discourse.

IV

[1] Most necessary to thy well-being is contentment (al-qana`at) under all
circumstances for through it will the soul be saved from sloth and
ill-being. [2] Eschew anxiety (al-hamma)and depression (al-ghamm) for
through these twain will transpire a darksome affliction (bala' adham).

V

[1] Say: Envy  (al-hasad) consumeth the body and rage [or anger, wrath,
al-ghayz) burneth the liver: avoid these two as ye would a fierce lion
(al-asad). [2] Purification of the bowels (tanqiyat al-fudul)  constitutes
a pillar [of health, al-`umdat)  when accomplished in the temperate seasons
(al-fusul al-mu'tadila). [3] He whose eating hath been excessive, his
malady will be heightened. [4] We, assuredly, have decreed a cause (sabab
an ) for all things
and vouchsafed everything with an effect (al-athar). All of this is by
virtue of the effulgence of My Name, the Efficacious [the `Producer of
Effects' al-mu'aththir)  upon existing things. Verily, thy Lord is the One
Who exerciseth command over all that He willeth.

VI

[1] Say: Through all that which We have expounded the [equilibrium of the]
four humours (al-akhlat)  will not exceed their moderate balance
(al-i`tidal), neither will their measures deviate from their mean
conditions. [2] The [human constitutional] foundation (al-al)  will remain
in its purity and the "sixth part" and the "sixth of the sixth part"
(wa'l-suds wa suds al-suds)  in their stable condition. [3] The twin active
forces (fa`ilan)  and the twin passive
realities (munfa`ilan)  will be rendered whole. And upon God is all our
trust. There is no God but Him, the true Healer, the Omniscient, the One
Whose succour is sought by all. [4]  My Supreme Pen hath not moved over
such words as the above save out of My love for thee, that thou mayest know
that sorrows have not overtaken the Ancient  Beauty and He is not saddened
by that  which hath  befallen Him from the nations. [5]  Sorrow is for that
one who loseth a thing, and from My Grasp is not lost all that is in the
heavens and the earth.

VII

[1] O Physician! Firstly, heal thou the sick ones with the Remembrance of
thy Lord (bi-dhikr rabbika), the Lord of the Day of Mutual Invocation (yawm
al-tanad)  and afterwards by that which  We have ordained for the  health
of the  constitutions of the  servants. [2] By My life! Merely attaining
the presence of the physician who hath drunk of the Wine of My Love
conferreth healing and his mere breath bringeth mercy and hope. [3] Say:
Adhere to him for the restoration of the body's well-being. [4] Verily such
a physician is assisted by God for
the treatment of ills. [5] Say: The science of healing is the most noble of
all the sciences. [6] Verily, it is the greatest instrument given by God,
the Quickener of mouldering bones, for the preservation of the bodies of
peoples. God hath given it precedence over all sciences and branches of
wisdom. [7] But this Day is the Day wherein thou shouldst arise to bring
about My Victory, detached from all the worlds.

VIII

Say: "Thy Name is My healing, O my God, and remembrance of Thee is my
remedy. Nearness to Thee is my hope and love for Thee my companion. Thy mercy to
me is my healing (tabib) and my succour in both this world and the world to
come. Thou, verily, art the All-Bountiful, the All-Knowing, the All-Wise."

IX   [1] Give the salutations of God to all the Friends. [2] Say: In this
Day two decrees (du amr) are beloved and to be desired. The first is wisdom
and utterance. [3] The second is steadfastness in the Cause of thy Lord,
the Most Compassionate. [4] Every one that attainethunto these twin
commands is accounted and mentioned, in the sight of God, as among the
dwellers of the City of Immortality (madinah-i baqa'). [5] For it is
through the instrumentality
of these twin decrees that the Cause of God hath been and will continue to
be established amongst God's servants. [6] This inasmuch as, were it not
for wisdom and utterance, all will become sorely tried. Were such to be the
case none would remain to guide the people unto the Religion of the One
True God. [7] Furthermore, if it were not for steadfastness, the words of
the teacher [lit. narrator, reminder, dhakir) shall not be effective.

X

[1] Say: O Friends! Apprehensiveness and agitation pertaineth unto
women. [2] And should the beloved of God reflect briefly upon the world and
its manifest vicissitudes, the dominance of those who hath been tyrants
will not frighten them. [3] Then shall they take their flight on the wings
of yearning desire unto the One Who is at the centre of the Luminous
Horizons [of the next World?] (nayyir al-afaq)  [4] This servant hath
wished for Himself that which He hath wished for all the servants of God.
[5] The reason that wisdom (hikmat) and the protection of the friends hath
been and shall be commanded is that those who remember Me should remain in
the world and occupy themselves with the mention of the Lord of all the
worlds. [6] Thus it is binding and necessary that all may protect
themselves and their brethren for the sake of the Cause of God. [7] If the
beloved of God had performed that which they were commanded, the majority
of the people of the world at this time would have been adorned with the
garment of faith. [8] Great is the blessedness of him who leadeth another
soul to the Immortal Faith of God and guideth him to life everlasting. [9]
This is an act of supreme importance in the presence of thy Lord, the
Mighty, the Most Exalted.

May the Spirit be upon thee! And may the Glory be upon thee also!

********

PS. If I can find time  and the interest exists I may post the notes.

love Steve

Stephen N. Lambden
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 2PQ
England. U.K.

Voice/Fax. +44 [0] 191. 2818597
Email S.N.Lambden@ncl.ac.uk

=END=

From: Alethinos@aol.com
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 16:14:14 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: wailing

Dear Linda:

Perhaps if you could set aside your prejudices you would actually see that
*we* are not frightened by your discussions at all. Actually we are saying,
over and over that in most respects we agree with your assesment that things
need to change.

So let me ask you . . . whay can't you ever see allies around you save for
the small band you have adopted as a part of your clubhouse? Why is it
constantly lil ol' us against the Big Bad THEM!? And if anyone so much as
sneezes to a tune not to your liking they are forever painted the dreaded
enemy and never to be trusted, to be heard or considered again?

When are you going to look at your own pattern on Talisman and learn from it?

jim harrison

Alethinos@aol.com

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 21:03:41 +0000
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: S.N.Lambden@newcastle.ac.uk (Stephen Lambden)
Subject: *Lawh-i tibb* ("Tablet of Medicine") Pt.I

Hi Talismanians and Tarjumanites,

In view of several requests that I post the PROVISIONAL translation of the
Arabic text of the *Lawh-i tibb* ("Tablet of Medicine") there follows the
article on the *Lawh-i tibb* ("Tablet of Medicine") which first appeared in
BSB 6:4-7:2 (October 1992) pp.18-65. Corrections to the translation and
notes (to follow) or other parts of the article would be much appreciated.
It is due to be revised  and reprinted imminently (BSB second editions;
copyrighted Newcastle upon Tyne: Hurqalya Publications) and should not be
cited without due acknowledgement. The introduction and commentary/notes
were written by myself while Khazeh Fananapazir and I did the translation
jointly. The transliteration will not be fully or adequately indicated as
this will become garbled on a proportion of your PC's e-mail software.

Salutations,

Steve

PS. I shall also be posting the corrected *Lawh-i kull al-ta`am* ("Tablet
of All Food") in 3 sections -- old postings of it should be placved in the
Babi-Baha'i geniza ('sacred bin').

*THE TABLET OF MEDICINE (LAWH-I TIBB) OF BAHA'U'LLAH: A PROVISIONAL
TRANSLATION WITH OCCASIONAL NOTES*.

Introduction

The Arabic - Persian text of Baha'u'llah's Tablet of Medicine (Lawh-i
tibb) [fn 1] is to be dated to the early `Akka' period of his ministry
(early 1870's?). It was addressed to a Baha'i named Mirza Muhammad Rida'-yi
Tabib-i Yazdi, a physician of the traditional school. The text is
translated and selectively annotated below. The tentative translation is
highly provisional. The notes are designed to clarify what is a sometimes
difficult text which could, at certain points, have been translated in
quite a number of different ways. Only a few of the verses or terms
contained within the *Lawh-i tibb*  are commented upon. It is hoped that
the translation and notes will be of interest to Baha'is in general and to
those who are practitioners of modern medicine. Doubtless, in the future,
scholars expert in both Baha'i doctrine and in the history of science /
medicine will write learned and comprehensive commentaries upon this
important Tablet.

As indicated, not all of the numerous Baha'i texts which might have an
expository bearing on the Tablet of Medicine  can be cited below. The
following letter of Shoghi Effendi makes some centrally important points:

"The Tablet to a Physician was addressed to a man who was a student of
the old type of healing prevalent in the East and familiar with the
terminology used in those days, and. He addresses him in terms used by the
medical men of those days. These terms are quite different from those used
by modern medicine, and one would have to have a deep knowledge of this
former school of medicine to understand the questions Baha'u'llah was
elucidating..Baha'u'llah has recommended that people seek the help and
advice of experts and doctors: He does not say which school they should
belong to.
Likewise there is nothing in the teachings about whether people
should eat their food cooked or raw: exercise or not exercise: resort to
specific therapies or not: nor is it forbidden to eat meat.
Baha'u'llah says teaching is the greatest of all services, but He
does not mean one should give up medicine to teach." [fn 2]

Shoghi Effendi indicated in a letter dated 14th January 1932 that the
first few Arabic paragraphs of the Tablet of Medicine   contain useful
advice for the maintenance of good health (see II:1ff).[fn 3] They echo
those medical maxims and pieces of useful advice (fawa'id) found in a
variety of Greek and Islamic literatures -- generally speaking, a
considerable proportion of Islamic medicine has Greek roots. Ullmann has
written in the introduction to his Islamic Medicine, "`Islamic medicine'
did not grow up on Arab soil. Rather it is the medicine of later Greek
antiquity which was formulated in the Arabic language in the south and west
of the Mediterranean from the ninth century A.D." (p.xi). While the Qur'an
contains little or no explicit medicine -- neither the word
doctor/physician nor medicine are mentioned (cf. Ullmann, p.4; Dols, review
of Rahman p.417) -- this is more than made up for in the Sunni and Shi`i

From the early Islamic centuries compilations of medical wisdom
attributed to the Prophet Muhammad were made by Sunni and Shi`i writers
(see the various
*Tibb al-nabi/ Tibb al-nabawi*  works). [fn 4] Such major Sunni canonical
collections of hadith as that of al-Bukhhari (810-870 CE) contain their own
*Kitab al-tibb*("Book of Medicine"). Many medical or quasi-medical
case that "The hadith  directly related to medicine are relatively few,
usually late, and frequently contradictory." [fn 5]

The medical wisdom of the Twelver Shi`i Imams (*tibb al- a'immah*)
was likewise assiduously compiled (see Agha Buzurg al-Tihrani,*al-Dhari`a
ila tasanif al-shi`a*  25 Vols Tehran / Najaf 1355/1936>, 15:135-144). [fn
6] A great many statements are attributed to the Twelver Imams that, in one
way or another, have to do with medical matters or with bodily health. To
the eighth Imam `Ali al-Rida' (c.768-818 CE) is attributed *al-Risala
al-dhahabiya / al-mudhahhaba fi'-tibb* ("The Golden Treatise..") a treatise
on medical cures and good health written for and at the request of the
`Abbasid Caliph al-Mansur (text in Majlisi, *Bihar al-anwar* (2nd ed) LXII:
308-328). Commentaries are said to have been written on this Arabic
treatise which have been translated into Persian and Urdu (see W. Malelung,
Ali al-Reza, EIr. 2:877-8). [fn 7] There exists furthermore, a treatise in
the Jabirean corpus -- writings attributed to Jabir ibn Hayyan
(c.103/721-c.200/815) -- certain of which Baha'u'llah drew upon -- entitled
*Kitab al-tibb al-nabawi`ala ahl al-bayt* ("The Book of Prophetic Medicine)
according to the view of the Household of  the Prophet").

=END=

From: Alethinos@aol.com
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 16:03:43 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: The Baha'i Faith, rights, and thinking

Again and again and again. When are we going to stop wasting our time with
this! Linda cries out against the abuse of human rights and that the Baha'is
have not arisen. Juan speaks of various tablets from the Central figures and
Their encouragment of democratic principles. As if someone here on Talisman
were vehemently arguing against human rights and democratic principles. How
odd.

My question is this. Since there is no disputing that: 1.) the Baha'i
community in America desperately needs to mature and has so far failed to
fulfill its spiritual destiny; 2.) and since this lack of maturity is a
primary cause of the abuses of power and the injustices many of us have
witnessed and still observe; 3.) and since the structure of the Cause will
not allow a direct assault on the Institutions; 4.) and since such an attempt
would find virtually no support within a Baha'i community that is already
lethargic and lacking vision . . .

Then why does this very narrow pattern of complaint continue? What good
will come of it? What good indeed has ever come of it? Most of us have seen
variations of this complaint made for decades - albiet in most cases far less
eloquently than presented here. And what has been achieved? What good came
out of the West L.A. crowd and their attacks? Why, when it became glaringly
obvious that such attacks were not succeeding did they continue? Does anyone
here but me play chess or team sports? Anyone here save a few ever been in a
pitched battle for your life and had to direct others? Does it have to be
said over and over and over: This Strategy Is Not Working!!!

The problems of the Faith in this country stem from Old World patterns of
thought and behavior. Far, far too many of the solutions offered here on this
list also spring from Old World concepts. Over and over there has been an
attempt by some here to seperate first principles that are in a sense
eternal, finding intellectual and spiritual support over millennia from the
ever-changing ideological fashions that have great appeal but on deeper
examination are shallow at best or in amny cases harmful - standing in
opposition to the Cause. These attempts at clarification are constantly
ignored and or attacked. There is never an attempt to try to carry forward
this examination and extraction of the wheat from the chaff. Then the lapse
into name-calling and accusations and using the term *covenant* as a codeword
for fascist behavior.

Why? When the parties that are complaining so bitterly constantly ignore
all the areas of agreement with those also wishing to see major changes; who
offer avenues of discourse to discover the most powerful ways to bring about
a thorough revolution in the Baha'i community which in turn will lead to a
revolution in America why is this either ignored or derided? What indeed is
their motive??

What narrow agenda must they be holding to? If they constantly ignore
every effort to join in the formation of a true Movement - as called for by
the Guardian himself what could be the reason? I have wondered this for some
time now. Do they want _real_ change or just changes that will satisfy their
own personal desires and views? Are they truly interested in seeing the Cause
of God victorious or just a Cause that won't bother them in their narrow
persuits? This wouldn't be an unusual motive. Indeed something similar is
seen within the community as a whole right now. The community as a whole is
confused and in a depression, just as the Guardian said would occur. And
people are off  "doing their own thing" a wonderful euphemism meaning "leave
me the hell alone I don't want to struggle I just want to sit on my butt and
pretend all will work out, i.e. Baha'u'llah will come swooping down from
heaven and pull my sorry ass out of the slough of impending extinction."

We have enough problems with the nefarious elements the Guardian mentioned
in Citadel of Faith. Don't think that they don't work very very hard at
keeping the status quo. And I am sure they love seeing some of the very best
minds in this country wrapped up like wet cats in a gunnysack called
Talisman. They have got to be laughing even now as they monitor us. We are
doing their work for them. And the more we rant and rave the easier it is to
paint us radical malcontents, disunifiers or even covenant-breakers.

For folks who are supposed to be so damn smart we sure as hell don't offer
up much evidence. When will we stop this foolishness and start working
together?

jim harrison

Alethinos@aol.com

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 15:33:05 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: wailing
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: , "Talisman"

Dear Linda,

Please give Jim credit for being a sincere person,  I read his post
,also, and I did't hear any of what you are saying.  I don't think Jim
thinks anything will be easy, quite the opposite;   and I never got the
impression that Jim is frightened of the debate or any of your other
complaints.  Those of us you do not agree with have the same problems you
encounter.  I feel like the situation has become politicized so that we
now have factions with a hardened view analogous to political parties who
view every statement throught the prism of their ideology.  It is as if
"either you are for us or against us".   I would like to send you a
loving message--you may think that's sappy but it's the best I can do.
Please forgive these feeble attempts at consultation.

Richard

>Dear Jim, I am sorry you think that these discussions are all a waste of
>time.
>Could you tell us where you DO find productive discussions of issues in the
>Faith?  Perhaps I am lacking in your capacity, but I have found Talisman
>to be
>the only Baha'i forum where I can speak.  Because of Talisman and my
>association with people who also enjoy some semblance of freedom, I feel far
>less alienated from Baha'is than I did before its inception.
>
>If you grow tired of the debates, if the problems posed here don't have easy
>solutions - or should I say solutions that we find ourselves able to
>implement
>because we have no power to do so - this is hardly our fault.  Nor is it,
>to my
>mind, any reason that we should shut up.  How many thinkers have written and
>spoken for years and years before any significant group was inclined to
>listen?
>
>I think the appropriate question to ask is, why is the debate that goes on on
>Talisman so frightening to so many people?

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 22:36:46 +0100 (MET)
Subject: real revolutionaries wanted
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Jim,
I had heard that Americans were sold on the quick fix, but this
beats all. We've been working on this for a WHOLE YEAR and
the results are not there for you to see? Woe! woe! Woe! woe!
Wooe! woooooeeee! Wooooeeee! woe! wow! (happens to me on
the full moon, take no notice :-)

What I've done in 18 months or so on Talisman is revision,
decide where the big priorities lie (not storming the bastille,
building the Mashriq in every sense of the word), set an
immediate programme for myself, got the necessary money in the
bank, start to reorganize my business to free me for the task on
hand, and STARTED WORK. In five years or so I honestly
expect there wil be results to see. Seeing as you're a highly
motivated chap, I assume you have done the same. Won't it be
great at harvest time!
Now, excuse me, I better get back to the plough

On the other hand, I thought this was good satire:

> Anyone opposed to this is a fascist pig. Well not really a
fascist
> you know. But like a fascist in a way. Not that we would want
> to actually call someone _a_ fascist but they are taking a
> fascist line sort of. Perhaps unwittingly? Well not so. But
> anyone not believing as we do is one, that much is clear, right?

touche'  - Ouch!

P.S. re: 'real revolutionaries'
- how about Johnny Appleseed as a role model?

Sen
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sen McGlinn                           ph: 31-43-3216854
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:        Sun, 11 Feb 96 16:55:53 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: re: response to Patterns.../Logan

I'd like to second the comments of Richard Logan re liberalism and the
desireability of a moderate view. Moderation is, like the middle way of
Buddism, a central teaching of the Faith.
R.H.

=END=

Date:        Sun, 11 Feb 96 17:19:04 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: re: rights/liberalism

It appears self evident from reading many of the comments on rights and
liberalism that some contributors have not made themselves familiar with
"Individual Rights and Freedoms in the World Order of Baha'u'llah." This
statement addresses many of the issues being discussed with rather
definitive statements which can be accepted as (generally) the Baha'i
view or approach to these sticky problems.  Perhaps some participants
disagree with the view of the House of Justice. I'm just surpised that
it is not being referenced in the discussion as I'm certain it sheds a
great deal of light on these issues.
I'm new to talisman so perhaps I'm naive in thinking that it would
naturally be a part of the discussion. No sarcasm intended here. I'm
asking a sincere question. Thanks for considering. R.H.

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 17:12:27 EST
Subject: chicken or the egg

The crucial factor in changing our world
and in healing ourselves is encapsulated in
one truth: the inner reality creates the outer reality.
-- Healing Into Immortality
*********************************

Perfect example of fragmentive approach for building a new society.
The way to fight cancer etc. is to have good thoughts. Never mind the
fact that the water we drink, the air we breathe and the food we
eat is contaminated by *man made* synthetic chemicals which are
developed without thorough testing of their synergistic effects and
without thorough knowledge of their potentiation, for cutting cost.
What came first chicken or the egg? The person or the system?
How do we change the system without changing the person?
How many of us dependent upon this MONSTER for *living*?
-related references to environment- Tablets of Baha'u'llah p. 69

"Where have all the people gone?"
They are busy
making money.
Their debt ceiling is raised,
until the roof comes down.

"Long time passing! "
Don't wait for them.
They will not come.
They're gone forever.

lovingly,
quanta

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 16:35:13 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: illiberal liberalism
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Juan Cole" ,
Cc: "Talisman"

>Finally, I am a pragmatist.  I know for a fact that the current Baha'i
>system allows abuses of power.  These are proving virtually impossible to
>correct.  The political culture of the community is such that the very
>possibility that such abuses could exist seems ruled out for a lot of
>people, which makes it all the more difficult to address them.  Further,
>evidence and case studies of abuses are carefully suppressed and their
>dissemination for public discussion would in and of itself constitute
>grounds for administrative expulsion.  Thus, the existence of abuses is
>made to a) seem impossible and b) be impossible to prove, and anyone raising
>the question can be summarily dismissed.  I think if one wanted to know
>why the Baha'i faith in the US has been virtually numerically and
>culturally stagnant for a decade and a half, that the answers lie in our
>system and are structural.  I admit that I do not have the slightest idea
>how to address these problems structurally.  But at least having an open
>arena of discourse such as Talisman allows them to be broached and discussed.
>
There are several questions I would like to address to you as far these
statements go:

1)  What role do the rank and file Baha'is play in this stagnation that
you have correctly identified?
a. Do they bear any responsibility in your mind?  Or are we
supposed to simply take this as a given and focus on the failings of the

institutions.
b. Is teaching the Faith and the various admonitions of the
central figures relevant to the discussion.
c. Are you saying the administrative problems are of such a
nature and some form of corruption has reached such a point as to have
choked off growth in the community,  or you feel if we just
had a liberal democratic policy everything would have been so much
better in terms of numbers and Baha'i spiritual growth.
d. What do you mean by culture "culturally stagnant".

2),  What type of abuses do you refer to and how serious are they?  Are
they petty abuses, criminal abuses or what?
a.  How is it that you are privy to so much abuse?
b. If there is why is it virtually everyone is unaware of it
and have to take your word for it.
c. Thus are you saying that the House and the NSA are
conspiring to keep us in the dark about wide spread abuse in some cover
up?
d. Do you suppose there maybe a more accurate fashion of
characterizing these events?
e. Are your charges centered around friends of yours?
f.  Is it possible that you should recuse yourself from
making these judgments because you are to close to the matter?

I feel it would enlighten us all if you could answer each point with care
and thoughtfulness.  As a Baha'i I am very interested in the matter of
abuse and any wrong doing you would care to cite.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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:        Sun, 11 Feb 96 18:01:31 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: re: note to Sen M.

Dear Sen: Perhaps you remember me as I corresponded with you a couple
times and you graciously commented on an essay-I'm sure you do. How are
you and thanks again for commenting. I'm wondering if you could clarify
something for me. I'm new on talisman, and your recent note to "jim" is
mystifying. I would guess that you'rcommunicating some kind of personal
message, or at least insider communication, as I can't make hide nor
hair of it. I was just wondering why you just don't send Jim an
e-mail message rather than post a coded letter on a open forum such as
this? Perhaps I'm the only one that could not decifer the note but
that's hard for me to believe. Thanks ahead of time for the
clarification. all the best Rick H.

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 00:04:59 +0100 (MET)
Subject: gshender-From Sonja
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Re Gender Smenders:

In 1990 I gave birth to our first son while still a student at art school
and one of the presents I received was a toy intended for Toroa, but I
found it so funny and yet so true that he never ever got his hands on it.
It consisted of 2 identical plastic dolls which were connected to each
other from the the top of the heads by a cord. They were identical
except that one wore a pink smoothed out dress and the other blue
smoothed out trousers.
like) that I got from people who were upset when I didn't reveal the sex
of my child, or when I didn't 'correct' anyone when he was referred to
as female.
I was surprised at how important gender deferentiation seemed and still
seems, and at how angry these people got with me. F E A R was
stamped throughout their bodies. So I just had to make an art wrok
about all of this and yes, the dolls played an important part in this too.
SO "First lessons in relativity" came into being.
First I filmed close-ups of the dolls swinging, touching, and moving
around and next to each other, and then I found an ironic fun  '30's jazz
piece called 'Silver dollar' which I used as music. The words warn of
the unreliability of women who are just as fickle as money is.
This ended up becoming a 2 minute video where for the first few
seconds you jsut see close-ups of the untwisting cord and hear the
sound of the clicking of the plastic, and then the music starts and so
does the 'story' where the dolls perform more as personas.

The second work that I made, which has had more coverage than the
video is an installation of the same name where I scanned the dolls into
the computer and in the end manufactured -5 times larger- silkscreen
printed replicas on cardboard, where each was 50 cm long in shades of
gender: That is the dolls were printed in shades of soft blue to soft
pink, so that each doll appear to be a slight colour variation from the
next. Then I hang them from nylon thread so they appear to hang there
in the air and as a someone walks underneath, sometimes they move.
Sometimes I've exhibited all 50 and other times around 12. And they've
always worked as a talking point.

However, to Dan's point. I think much homophobia is to do with fear of
ourselves. Fear of not knowing what the limits of our identity are and
in the end discovering that there are none. That our relativity is just
that.

As an aside, yesterday, a Bahai visiting us was told by our (now) 5
year old son, about his new (toy) baby seal. 'Oh she said, so you are the
papa". "No" cried Toroa indignantly, "I'm his mama!". The woman was
so shocked that she changed the subject.

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 18:27:17 EST
Subject: re: rights/liberalism

Dear Rick,

Yes! The book in question plus "Peace" message and the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights pamphlet are permanently stuck
into my purse. I have on occasions joined the local ACLU and
other groups in reading portions of  UDHR in December in front of
the Federal Court house here in Raleigh. I also make an effort
to include UDHR in my class projects involving International
Development etc. You will be benefited in studying both.
I am unclear if the former is only for U.S. or, it applies to the
whole world considering the styles of communications do differ.

lovingly,
quanta

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 15:27 PST
To: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: various things
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>
>.  If he had to write, he should have written
>a cook book.

Whew! At last, an author other than me being lambasted ( a sub-chapter on

>
>As for the issue of human rights,... we as a
>religious group have not stood up and stuck our necks out for the rights of
human beings.  We haven't been vocal on this topic except when it concerned
Baha'is.

The most noticable exception is Baha'u'llah, Himself!
When Jews were being persecuted in Persia under the Shaw in 1870,
Baha'u'llah revealed His Epistle to the Shaw "If justice is not dealt out,
if these oppressions are not removed and if thou dost not obey God, the
foundations of they Govenment will be razed..."
Baha'u'llah told the Shaw to, in essence, re-enact the scene of Moses
and Pharoah with Baha'u'llah playing Moses (playing? He is Moses!) and the
Shaw playing Pharoah.  He dealt with the Shaw as Moses did with Pharoah, and
for the same reasons. God said "let my people go" and Pharoah said no.
Baha'u'llah was demanding justice and equity for the oppressed Jews of
Persia, not for Himself -- the Ancient Beauty consented to be bound with
chains, but He pledged not to forgive any man's injustice.

Burl

>Catholicism in South America.  The Church is losing ground there fast since the
>Pope squelched the liberation theology movement.  The Church is being
>associated with the rich and the poor are becoming Protestants!  (I take refuge
>in God!)  I don't see how we can be much influence in this world if we seem to
>be supporting the status quo.  The status quo is not working for the betterment
>of the world at Linda
>
>

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 16:01:39 -0800 (PST)
From: Steven Coles
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Tattooless in Seattle (& everywhere?) (fwd)

I do hope you intended to direct the following inquiry to Talisman &
aren't assuming I am qualified to answer it.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 08:10 PST
From: Burl Barer
To: Steven Coles
Subject: Re: Tattooless in Seattle

I seem to recall that Baha'u'llah forbid tatoos but it is not in the
Aqdas. Does anyone know about such an injunction?

Burl

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

Steven S. Coles
Seattle, Washington State, U.S.A.

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 17:52:55 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Genders Smenders
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Dan Orey" ,
"Talisman"
Cc: , ,
<103275.1472@compuserve.com>, ,
, ,

>In the future, I can see a gay or lesbian being attracted to the Faith,
>because
>we are honest and apologetic, just as are my MCC, Catholic, Episcopalian,
>Presbyterian, and Lutheran friends are to their seekers. We should and do
>answer their questions, but should so in light of an honest apology - one
>that
>recognizes the confusion we have over this issue. But one that says, we want
>and need you, because our community will not be complete with out the
>complete
>perspective that you will bring to the table. No judgment, no condescension,
>just unconditional love.

Dear Dan,

We must begin to realize the humanity of each of us.  I have come to
understand that in a very important sense the question of homosexuality
is unique.  I say this because only homosexuals must deal with being
homosexuals in a social sense.  All of us can say we have done one thing
or another that is considered immoral ( I am not making any judgments)
but only homosexuals have to walk the lonely road outside of what most of
us do.  This places a special burden on our brothers and sister of as you
expressed it "lavender persuasion" I don't know if that applies to
lesbians, if not I apologize.  Drug takers, for example, are considered
mainstream by comparison.  I don't want you to think I'm saying any
homosexual's actions are sinful because I truly don't make that judgment.
I know God treats all of us as individuals and He knows our hearts.  I
just wanted to tell you that I understand the pain you must feel--because
way which no other human being is expected to bear except homosexuals
would have to be more than I think I could stand.  I hope I haven't
offended or shown prejudice or ineptness towards you in saying this.

I feel it is the duty of every Baha'i to treat "Gay bashing" as
unacceptable and that we should ask understanding and acceptance from our
fellow Baha'is and others on the behalf of our Gay and Lesbian brothers
and sister as an article of Baha'i behavior.

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 16:29:50 -0800 (PST)
From: Steven Coles
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: re: rights/liberalism

Richard,

At least for the benefit of my ignorant self, please do post from
"Individual Rights and Freedoms in the World Order of Baha'u'llah."  Is
this document available from most Baha'i bookstores?

Steven S. Coles
Seattle, Washington State, U.S.A.

=END=

From: SFotos@eworld.com
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 16:40:21 -0800
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Fozdar & western scholarship

Dear Talismans,

Ahang wrote
----------------------------- Begin Original Text
-----------------------------

The idea of being "original" in writing is a western invention of
post-Romantic period.  In ME, one honors the earlier favorite,
great writers or artists by quoting or emulating their work and
this is not looked down as "sloppy scholarship", to the contrary,
the writer is honoring his audience by implying that his readers
are learned enough to know the sources, as well as honoring the
writer(s) being quoted.  The Central Figures of Baha'i Faith have
used this approached extensively, namely, quoting without
referencing from previous Sacred Literature or literary works.

----------------------------- End Original Text -----------------------------

The same considerations can be raised about much Asian scholarship. For
example, in Japan during the Meiji era scholars translated massive amounts
from German and English philosphical, economic and technical texts with no
citations of sources. It was understood that translation was an important
vehicle for introducing western thought as a whole, specific authorship of
which was viewed (inaccurately from our perspective) as of minor importance.

Furthermore, the traditional rhetorical patterns of many languages and
English are quite different, and this adds to the difficulty of constructing
western-style linear arguments, supported with documentation and annotation,
when writers from these traditions are expressing themselves in English.

As a result, the concept of scholarly "blind review" remains problematic in
the light of such cultural variation, and patience and understanding is
needed from both sides.

Sandy Fotos
Tokyo

=END=

From: Geocitizen@aol.com
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 20:28:34 -0500
To: jrcole@umich.edu, talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: illiberal liberalism

In a message dated 96-02-11 14:04:31 EST, you write:

>Kevin:  I think it is a mistake to set up an opposition between liberal
>rights and the Baha'i philosophy of human nature.

The above description of what I wrote oversimplifies the concepts to such a
degree as to significantly change their meaning.  The opposition which I
think may be important is not between liberal rights and the Baha'i
philosophy of human nature.  It is between the Baha'i philosophy of human
nature and the liberal philosophy (or philosophies) of human nature.

In most respects I think there will likely be a great deal of resemblance
between liberal rights and a Baha'i conception of human rights, which is
comforting in the sense that Baha'i principles cannot be made (without great
distortion) to support totalitarianism.  However, this resemblance does not
mean we can safely ignore the differences of emphasis in the justification of
rights, because those foundational differences will deeply affect the way
rights play themselves out in the reality of community life.

In this vein it bears repeating that I think Baha'i ideals of justice are
very similar to those of liberalism.  Thus, the Baha'i view I see eventually
emerging from the inquiry I am suggesting cannot accurately be labeled
"antiliberal," nor do I in any way advocate abandoning the defense of human
rights.  If anything, it is liberalism's failure to effectively defend human
rights that drives my inquiry.

>First of all, we do not have a single book examining the Baha'i
>philosophy of human nature, and I am not myself convinced that we know so

Nor am I convinced we have reached such a settled state of knowledge about
the Baha'i philosophy of human nature, which is why I do not think it safe to
assume full congruence between the Baha'i and the liberal views of human
nature.  I am calling for a deeper examination of these issues, not claiming

>Second, human rights can be supported within more than one philosophical
>framework.  It needn't be contract-theory, classical Liberalism, though
>protections for the individual were very precious to Baha'u'llah and
>`Abdu'l-Baha and Shoghi Effendi.

You present the above as if it were a point of disagreement between us, yet
its content is basically a summary of my post to which you are responding.
The liberalism with which I cannot agree is the very same contract-theory
classical Liberalism you mention, from which all of modern Western
liberal-democratic theory is descended.  There are of course many variations
on this theme, but they share the same Hobbesian/Lockean foundational flaws,
which threaten the integrity of anything built on them, no matter how
elegantly designed it may be.

I do not oppose protections for the individual.  I simply think that
Baha'u'llah, 'Abdu'l-Baha, and Shoghi Effendi would value most highly a
system of protections which actually *does protect* the individual, rather
than what we have now in liberal systems:  a system of many claims but little
real protection.

>We also do not have large amounts of writing about the view in the Baha'i
>scriptures of individual human rights.  We are at the beginning of
>thinking about these things.  But the paper I am writing on human rights
>in the Baha'i Writings has convinced me that they powerfully support
>individual rights.  The power of their support is sometimes blunted by
>poor translations, as with Secret of Divine Civilization and Tablet of
>the World (not to mention Ishraqat).

Again you seem to think you are refuting my points, yet your words are in
full agreement with what I have been saying.  Somewhere one of us is not
understanding the other.

> . . . I think if one wanted to know why the Baha'i faith in the US has been
virtually >numerically and culturally stagnant for a decade and a half, that
>in our system and are structural.  I admit that I do not have the slightest
idea
>how to address these problems structurally.  But at least having an open
arena
>of discourse such as Talisman allows them to be broached and discussed.

First, I fully agree with your assessment of the value of Talisman, and
indeed think it has the potential to contribute even greater value than it
now does. I hope you have not misread anything I have written as hostile to
the existence of Talisman, for nothing could be further from the truth.

Now, as to the reasons for the stagnation of the Baha'i community in America,
I have long been aware of your conviction that the problems, and thus the
solutions, are structural.  However, I cannot come to share your conviction,
as I've said before, in light of the fact that every structural attempt to
restrain the abuse of power in liberal systems has been circumvented by the
powerful.  Sometimes they simply ignore the structural restraints from the
outset; sometimes it takes them decades to figure out how to subvert the
reformers' intentions (as in the gradual conversion of the American federal
regulatory agencies from a restraint on the power of industrialists into one
of the main channels by which industrialists and corporations now exert their
huge influence upon the government).

They do this, in part, simply because they can; that is what it means to be
powerful.  But they also do it because their theory of "rights" tells them
they have every "right" to do it, and that they need not care a fig for the
rights of those they are laying off, or whose neighborhoods they are
polluting, or whose nation-states are thrown into anarchy by the weapons they
are manufacturing -- because those people's rights are their own concern --
my concern is with *my* right to make a huge profit.

This is one of the flaws I think a Baha'i conception of rights must be
carefully formulated to exclude.  Of course we are nowhere near achieving
this yet, as your rehearsal of the problems within the Baha'i community
shows.

But it is the way we think that has gotten us into this, and changing the way
we think is going to have to be the way we get out of it.

Regards,
Kevin

=END=

Sub: ... no subject ...
From: Geocitizen@aol.com
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 20:28:39 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu

that Baha'is usually refer to the eternal laws as "spiritual laws"
and those that can be changed by each Manifestations as "social laws," but I
am not sure I can agree with John's construction of the spiritual laws as
"the laws relative to the individual," at least not relative to the atomistic
individual of liberal theory.  Perhaps the strongest counterexample is the
spiritual principle frequently cited as a universal moral precept:  the
Golden Rule, which counsels the individual person to keep the interests of
others constantly in mind.

In fact, in my reading of Baha'u'llah's formulation of the Golden Rule
(pardon my paraphrase, but I think it went something like "Blessed is he who
prefers his brother before himself." -- people with Refer or the built-in
cerebral equivalent, feel free to correct me here :) Baha'u'llah seems to be
urging me to consider others not only as having equal value to myself, but as
actually having greater value than myself.  This has implications that would
make a Baha'i social theory vastly different from liberalism, though I don't
pretend to know the exact shape those differences will take.

It is also curious that John begins his effort to show that the individual is
more real by referring to the *spiritual* laws, and then continues the
argument by noting that the individual is more *tangible* than group-defined
social units.

Aside from this curious commingling of metaphysical and empirical premises,
the empirical premise of tangibility can also support the argument that at
least the family and humanity as a whole are "real" social units, since there
is empirical evidence from the fields of genetics and biology to show that
these groupings are more than mere intellectual constructs.

Leaving all of that aside, even if we do accept the argument that the
individual unit is more real than the social units in some eternal sense, it
should be noted that the social laws revealed in each Dispensation are no
less binding upon their allotted span of history than the spiritual laws
which do not change over time.

Perhaps in some distant future, humans will evolve to the point where the
social obligation of the mother to her child will end at birth, and the
newborn infant can safely be abandoned in the woods -- perhaps the newborn
will be able, by sheer force of intellectual will, to ward off passing wild
animals who would take it as food, and mentally compel the same predators to
go forth and bring back suitable nourishment for its physical development,
until such time as it grows strong enough to hunt for itself, when it will
wander about until it telepathically gleans linguistic ability from other
humans it encounters, then educates itself in the wonders of literature,
science, etc. . . . and so on.  If and when such an evolutionary level
arrives, individual autonomy will be an absolute right, and social
obligations can safely be defined as wholly voluntary.

But in the reality of the contemporary human condition, we all know that if
my mother had abandoned me in the forest after giving birth to me, I would
have ended as nothing more than a tasty snack for the next decent-sized
critter to happen by -- a scene some here might contemplate wistfully as they
wade through my interminable posts.  ;-)

In addition to this, the Baha'i Writings clearly recognize at least the
family, the local community, and humanity as a whole as being real enough to
legislate protections for them and to exhort individuals to consider these
groups' well-being of high importance.

John also helpfully supports my observation that in liberal theory, rights
are considered a needed weapon with which the individual can combat the
oppression of powerful groups and rulers who will seek their interests in
ways detrimental to the interests of the individual.

Unfortunately, in practice it usually does not work that way, for the
powerful capture the high ground of rights theory, just as they have that of
unduly reified social organizations.  In liberal societies, individuals are
not only ground underfoot, they are also educated to believe that their
oppression and poverty is their own fault, because they "have rights" and
thus should have been able to make themselves rich and powerful by sheer
force of will, or something.

By the same token, those who *are* rich and powerful "deserve" their status
because *in theory* they had to work hard and take risks for it -- it is
considered unconscionably rude to point out that *in reality* most of them
inherited their wealth and position.

John tries to say that religion, practiced voluntarily and privately, can
remedy the excesses of liberal systems.  Perhaps certain religions could
improve liberal societies, but to a great degree it is theology that has
gotten liberal capitalism where it is today, as Max Weber and other scholars
of capitalism have pointed out.

In short, I remain convinced, with what I think to be good reasons, that
liberal theory as most people understand it (whether intuitively, as the
masses understand it, or cognitively, as liberal theorists understand it) is
included in Baha'u'llah's indictment of the present-day world order as
"lamentably defective," and although it contains much that can and should be
saved, must be reformulated with a new foundation free of the kinds of flaws
I have been discussing here on Talisman.

Regards,
Kevin

In a message dated 96-02-11 09:56:55 EST, John wrote:

>Re Kevin's comment that in liberal theory only individuals exist and
>social units--family, etc.--have no objective existence, it should be
>noted that in the usual Baha'i interpretation of progressive revelation,
>spiritual laws--i.e., the laws relative to the individual--are thought to
>be eternal, whereas social laws are seen as dependent on contemporary
>conditions.  If so, social units would seem to have less reality than
>individuals.  This makes sense since individuals are tangible, after
>all.  (Back in his social historian period, I once irritated Juan by
>insisting that social classes did not exist.)
>
>The basic liberal insight, which a lot of the postmodernists agree with,
>is that unduly reified social organizations tend to be used on behalf of
>the interests of the powerful.  The point of rights theory is to give the
>individual some recourse against the interests of the group or of the
>ruler.  I think the lesson of the last century of democracy in America is
>that a tolerable society requires rights guaranteed by law and duties
>primarily imposed by religion.  If the fundamental basis of duties is
>government, you get states like the Communist countries--i.e., the state
>is founded by idealists and looks good on paper, but in practice it
>grinds the individual underfoot.  If you don't have duties imposed by
>religion or something else voluntary, you get a situation where every
>individual is always trying to maximize his own interests without regard
>to the larger interests of society--television run for advertisers on the
>basis of ratings, for example, and no-fault divorce.
>
>In short, individuals are protected from oppression by good laws, but
>their characters are built by voluntary adherence to religion or the
>equivalent.
>
>John Walbridge

=END=

Date:        Sun, 11 Feb 96 23:10:59 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:

steven: "Individual Rights..." should be available though any Baha'i
bookstore or the national Distribution service. It is a profound
document addressing the subject of much of the dialogs on talisman. I
have no time to post from it at this time, and can only get in small
bytes. Hope you get a copy to read. best wishes. Rick Harmsen

=END=

[end of 2/11/96 session]

---------------------------------------------------------

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 20:38 PST
To: "Richard C. Logan"
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Genders Smenders
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>>Richard Said:

>I feel it is the duty of every Baha'i to treat "Gay bashing" as
>unacceptable and that we should ask understanding and acceptance from our
>fellow Baha'is and others on the behalf of our Gay and Lesbian brothers
>and sister as an article of Baha'i behavior.

Burl agrees:
And that is *exactly* what Shoghi Effendi and the UHJ have asked us
repeatedly to do.   My wife lived for several years in a country where there
were two homosexuals on the NSA.  It was no "secret" that they were
homosexuals, but rather -- "so, that is Mr. so and so's test, may God assist
him with his tests and he does me with mine" and that was that. Neither
gentleman's behaviour was immoral nor were they a "problem" -- rather they
served the Faith with distinction.  I think America has more of a "problem"
with other people's tests than elsewhere.  I have enough problems with my
tests, without taking other's for them!

Burl

>
>

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 23:52:23 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: Geocitizen@aol.com
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: illiberal liberalism

Kevin:  I am glad we are so closely in agreement on so many points; as
you note, not all of my points came in reply to yours.

We still disagree about the nature of liberal society on two major
grounds.  First, while many rights in US society do have a background in
Hobbesian/Lockean contract theory, not all claims of rights made in US
society are made on that basis, and some successful claims (such as
affirmative action for women and minorities) would be difficult to
justify in that framework (which is why the Chicago Law School on the
whole does not like affirmative action).  In particular, *human rights*
are asserted, not because of a contract, but because they are held to be
owing to human beings by virtue of being human.  Although the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights does not have the force of law, subsequent
United Nations treaties and covenants on human rights *do* have the force
of international law, and these are beginning to have an impact on the
domestic rights scene in many countries, as Frank Newman has shown.
Since most of the rights asserted as *human* rights out of a philosophy
of human dignity are the same as the rights earlier asserted by Lockeans
out of their contract theory, it may be that different philosophies of
human nature and society can arrive at the *same* rights.  I think this
is certainly true of the rights put forward on a spiritual basis in
Tablet of the World, Secret of Divine Civilization and Traveller's Narrative.
So, I think we should be more concerned with outcomes (the *actual*
guarantee of rights to individuals) than with underlying philosophies of
human nature, about which any two philosophers might not even agree, even
if starting from the same paradigm.

*Second*, whether de jure rights and protections are achieved in positive
law in the US is not a black and white question.  There are types of law,
sectors of society, all sorts of shades to the spectrum.  I do not know
if you have lived at length in other countries, but there is not any
comparison between the sorts of positive rights most Americans have and
the so-called rights implemented in much of the rest of the world.  In
40% of the world's countries one has an absolute dictatorship.  Even in
so-called democracies relatively few countries go so far in implementing
free speech provisions as does the US.  Now, the US is a very imperfect
society, as all societies are, but give me a choice between living here
or in Syria or Iran or China or Nigeria, and I take the US hands down, on
human rights grounds.  Flag burners have been acquitted here; the Southern
Center for Law has bankrupted the Klu Klux Klan with civil damages suits
here; enormous numbers of sexual harrassment suits and race
discrimination suits have been won here.  Am I happy with all the
injustices that remain?  No.  I decry the continued discrimination
against African-Americans; I decry the continued purchase of patriarchy;
I decry the huge inequalities of wealth and the crushing of the union
movement and subsequent lack of economic progress for the working class
and the poor; I decry the ability of Forbeses to buy public office via
television.  But these outcomes are not produced by liberal rights, and
undermining those rights will not rectify the problems.  The framework of
rights would allow workers, African Americans and women to organize and
struggle for their rights.  The same legal structure that has given
Forbes his entree into the system is open to being affected by millions
of working and middle class voters, if they were to get their acts together.

The fact is that even a president, like Nixon, could not get away with
supressing evidence of an illegal break-in, and was impeached.  The law
applied even to the first citizen.  This is not true in Syria or Iraq or
China or Nigeria.  What allowed Nixon's impeachment was a free press,
which he did not control; freedom of speech for members of Congress; a
separation of powers such that the Supreme Court could subpoena his
tapes.  This was a painful process, and it did long-term damage to the
morale of the country.  But it also vindicated the rule of law.  The
system of governance envisioned by many Baha'is seems such that if a
Nixon got into power and committed misdeeds, he could never be
impeached.  That scares me.  I don't think such an outcome is consistent
with Secret of Divine Civilization or Tablet of the World.  But if you
abolish the free press, forbid critical speech, forbid minority parties
from complaining when they are over-ruled (indeed forbid minority parties
as parties at all), and avoid any separation of powers, so that Nixon
acts simulaneously as president and chief justice--then you will get an
outcome where Nixon cannot be impeached.

cheers   Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 21:40:36 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Watsonville Teaching Project latest news.
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Today I was given the current update on this project. I believe the
last time I posted on it was early December. The number of enrolements
has now gone over one hundred. The Institute team are now starting to
give prayer books immediately they ordered 150 copies today for urgent
delivery. It seems a new pattern is starting in the four block area the
teaching is going on. Now they are finding when a person in a household
enrolls on the regular follow-up visits others in the household are
reading and expect to receive the same literature as the first person
in the home who declared. Jeff Rhodes now believes the actual number
may be up to 150 people, but he says numbers do not matter wise man.
Kindest Regards
Derek Cockshut

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Mon, 12 Feb 1996 00:59:08 EST
Subject:       Re: *Lawh-i tibb* ("Tablet of Medicine") Pt.II Prov. Trans.

Tarjumanih azizam!

I am deeply greatful for the posting of this Tablet. Just on time for
the Fast. I am looking forward with eagerness to the Tablet of All
Foods. I came home and was comparing the English with the Turkish
one by. M. Inan, 1974 Istanbul - Hz. Baha'u'llah'in Levihleri p.167-
69 . There are a couple of areas which I need clarification on.
In part II

1--"...and drink  * not after retiring to sleep*...
In Turkish it is translated ..tok karnina su icmeyiniz" which
translates into English "do not drink fluid with a full stomach.."

2--"...How beneficial is exercise..."
"Ne guezeldir bosh mide riyazeti.." "How wonderful is...
(Riyazet translated from Turkish English Oxford Dictionary 1980 Ed.
as "...mortification of the flesh" implying self-control/discipline.
There is nothing about exercise (hareket).
I found these two differences significant enough for me to know the
appreciated. Again, thank you for such a wonderful service
LONG LIVE TALISMAN!!

lovingly,
Quanta

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 22:19:11 -0800
To:
From: carmen@ucla.edu (Carmen Mathenge)
Subject: Re: Sinaic Imagery

At 11:05 PM 1/31/96 -0700, [G. Brent Poirier] wrote:
>
>While I rather enjoyed the overall theme and content of John Walbridge's
>essay on sexual imagery in Baha'u'llah's writings, I feel that including
>the passage from the Tablet of the Deathless Youth as an example of erotic
>imagery was blasphemous.  skip(Lest the intent be missed, this Tablet is
introduced with the
>explanation that "the bride too ... now may freely behold her husband,"
>clearly implying that the Manifestation was completely naked.  To portray
>the Tablet of the Deathless Youth as a depiction of an auto-erotic nude
>Bab presents a monstrous vision of the Manifestation.

Excuse me if I'm dense, but am I missing something here?  To me the
explanation "the bride too . . . now may freely behold her husband," merely
means that with a heavy veil over her face, he could not behold her face,
but for the same reason she would not be able to see him clearly either.
Nothing to do with either of them being naked . . .

Carmen
99999999999999999999999999999999999999
Carmen Mathenge
Lawndale, California, USA
99999999999999999999999999999999999999

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 21:04:57 PST
Subject: the choice to be celibate.
To: belove@sover.net, Burl Barer
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

On Sat, 10 Feb 96 12:45 PST  Burl Barer wrote:
>Belove posted:
>> A heterosexual person has a choice to be celibate,
>>>but homosexual one does not.
>
>
>saying "have sex with someone right now or I pull the trigger"?
>    How about we turn it around: A homosexual person has a choice,
but a
>heterosexual person does not. Who agrees?

Burl, I meant that, among those who wish to have a sex life, in the
Baha'i world the heterosexual has a choice and the homosexual does
not.

And further, I am staking out a position here.  You get closer to not

.  It is simply that expressing
>love intra-gender via sexual acts is inappropriate behaviour,
that's all.
>No matter how fine and dandy and honest and delightful that love may
be, you
>are notified by the manufacturer that the machinery is not to be
operated
>that way. Now shoghi effendi says that we don't know if occasional
misuse of
>the equipment voids the manufacturer's merciful warranty or not --
he says
>we should hope for mercy but not count on it, or words to that
effect.

I know that this is what shoghi effendi says.  What I am saying is
that, I am not able to see this with my own seeing or know this with
my own knowing.

>There is nothing against love, affection, dediation, friendship,
unity, life
>or any of those things in our Faith -- we have simply been asked to
not have
>sex with folks of the same gender even if we want to. And if we are,
or want
>to , and do so, we are supposed to not be resigned to this as a
perpetual
>condition (unlike the perpetual virgin).
>We are not expected to *not*  "desire" "want" "prefer" for our
"self" things
>contrary to the instructions from the Creator -- we are expected to
do our
>best to not *act* on those specific "wants."

I know.

Philip
-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/11/96
Time: 21:04:57

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

From: Stephen Bedingfield
Subject: String of pearls quote??
To: talisman@indiana.edu (Talisman)
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 1996 23:23:26 MST

Dear friends,

Can anyone point me to the reference for a "string of pearls" encircling the
globe?  I think it is by 'Abdu'l-Baha.

Thanks...

stephen
--
Stephen Bedingfield               | "We desire but
Box 115, Cambridge Bay NT X0E 0C0 |   the good of the world and
Canada             (403) 983-2123 |   the happiness of the nations"
email:  sbedin@inukshuk.gov.nt.ca |                  - Baha'u'llah

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 03:15:59 -0400
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: milkman@ibl.bm (Alec Bourne)
Subject: Re: Tattooless in Seattle (& everywhere?) (fwd)

>I do hope you intended to direct the following inquiry to Talisman &
>aren't assuming I am qualified to answer it.
>
>---------- Forwarded message ----------
>Date: Fri, 9 Feb 96 08:10 PST
>From: Burl Barer
>To: Steven Coles
>Subject: Re: Tattooless in Seattle
>
>  I seem to recall that Baha'u'llah forbid tatoos but it is not in the
>Aqdas. Does anyone know about such an injunction?
>
>Burl

I've been told, that somewhere in the aqdas.. it is said that we should not
make ourselves into objects for the amusement of others < massive
paraphrasing here> and that this has in turn
been interpreted as, do not tattoo, or pierce, or modify your body.. such
that it becomes something of amuzement to others..  I suppose this would
also mean do not dye, bodybuild, have reconstructive surgery either??

Tattoos having been around for many thousands of years, the Egyptians were
tattood, as were tribes in the far north.. the iceman found in the glacier
recently had blue tattoos over his skin. This form of art is seen in every
culture on earth , or has been found at one point or another.
In most cases, the reasons for such work is personal, and somewhat private
to the person that has undergone the tattoo.... a very spiritual experience

Tattoos are said to bring to the surface. that which is felt inside the
person.. this could be an ideal, or a visualisation of a prayer say.. While
the procedures used in tattooing have in the past been of dubious safety
the artform has
never ceased. Perhaps it is for reasons of safety this was forbidden in the
bible.. and quran. Perhaps that is why Pork had been forbidden < because of
risk of ingesting parasites, in poorly cooked meat>

In the event that a person decides to tattoo themselves, as a means of
bringing forth for their own person, greater understanding of themselves,
and of religion/spirituality.. how is it different in any manner from
singing?  If creating art is forbidden, or manipulating that which we come
into contact with, in the hopes of gaining better understanding is wrong..
where is this to be found in the writings. where are the underlying
reasons???

-- tattooed and ok with it...

############################
## # ze von unt only Milkmeister  #####
###  Ze Milkiator############
###########################

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 00:32:33 -0700
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: mcfarlane@upanet.uleth.ca (Gordon McFarlane)
Subject: Re: natural impulses & "the subject of boys"

To the individual who recently sent me the following message privately . . .

>I know this is a rather old message but I thought I would advance this
>notion to you privately.

>You seem to postulate that your "revulsion" as it were is a natural
>thing.  I would guess that it has the same naturalness as any predjudice
>such as racism.  Millions upon millions of people over generations have
>held deep seated prejudice against various groups for what ever reason. I
>think the Baha'i Faith calls us to shed this prejudice if we are to
>advance.  I beleive this is the greatest test we face.

I reply . . . .

I whole heartedly agree that prejudice is  the greatest tests we
face, that no living soul is totally free of it,  that we have not even
begun to understand the nature of prejudice,  that confronting it in
ourselves  is perhaps the most difficult, painful and valuable action we can
take as a first step towards our own spiritual transformation and that
Baha'u'llah demands that action of us.  I have been involved in cross
cultural, and anti-racism work for 20 years. I still have not totally
overcome  my own prejudices. I believe anyone who claims they have is either
deluded or an arrogant fool or a liar.    For my part, confronting my own
prejudices is preferable to pointing out the prejudices of others.  But  I
fear you misunderstood the intent of my January 17 post.  A natural
revulsion to certain sexual practices should not and cannot be equated with
"deep seated prejudice against a group" anymore than a distaste for certain
foods should imply a distaste for the people who find those same foods
desirable.   I can love those people, I can seek fellowship with them, I can
dine at the same table. It is not necessary for me to eat the same food. If
I invited a friend to supper and he/she declined because she was a
vegetarian and I was cooking meat, I would not feel slighted, put down,
victimized,  persecuted or bashed  Even if this  individual became nauseous
at the smell in my kitchen  or the sight of me eating cooked dead animal
flesh, I would not consider it a personal insult.  Similarly, if I do not
share the  sexual appetites or preferences of my homosexual friends - even
if I find the thought of such practices repugnant, this is in no way a
rejection of them as human beings or a denial of any of their basic human
rights nor does it  imply that I prowl the streets at nights with a tire
iron looking for gay skulls to smash or that I would condone such actions in
others. Far far from it.
I have encountered individuals who consider both homosexual
and heterosexual acts distasteful.  That's fine with me; they are not guilty
of  misanthropy,  misogyny  misandry,  prejudice, homophobia, bigotry,
violence,  intolerance, racism or satanism.
I am  sick and tired of  hearing accusations of "homophope",
"Gay-Basher", "Bigot" etc. from those who  equate a distaste or revulsion
for certain sexual practices with "racism",  who display an attitude of
zero tolerance for, and hurl accusations at,  anyone and everyone who does
not wholly agree that their lifestyle is not only perfectly normal and
acceptable but universally desirable, who cannot address any other issue
without relating it to sexual orientation, and who strive to dominate every
forum and derail every discussion with their single issue politics.    This
trivializes the problem of racism and is a gross insult to those people who
have been victims of racism.   When I see another person treated unjustly
because of  his/her ethnicity,  color, accent, attire, sex or physical
handicap it is and should be my concern.  It is not, and should not be my
concern what sort of orifice another man wants to poke his penis into,  what
significance he attatches to such an act, or how strongly he feels his sense
of identity is determined by it.  Furthermore I am fed up with this B.S.
that gay men are more caring, compassionate, sensitive and creative than
heterosexual or non-sexual men. Yes there are gay men who have these
qualities as well as there are gay men who are violent, hateful and
unimaginative - same goes for hetero's.
Baha'u'llah tells us to be upholders and defenders of the victim of
oppression. There is a huge difference between being a victim of oppression
and having someone view our habits or lifestyle as undesirable. The victim
may be an alcoholic, a drug addict, a hooker, a thief,  a (homo/ hetro/
bi/mono or asexual,  a chronic liar, or a compulsive gambler a chain smoker.
We are not called upon to defend alchoholism, prostitution,  theft, homo/
hetero/ bi/ mono/ or asexuality,  lying,  gambling or smoking but to defend
the victim - another human being.  Similarly, if we dissaprove of any of the
aforementioned habits or lifestyles our dissapproval does not constitute
persecution of that individual.
It damned well does constitute persecution though, when we
dissaprove of someone's ethnic origin, skin color or other physical
characteristics.  Believing that ones own race is inherently superior to
others IS NOT the same thing as viewing anal or oral intercourse between
same sex  partners as innapropriate, or distasteful. Those who insist that
they are the same thing, trivialize and further perpetuate the injustice
suffered by those who truly are victims of racism.

>On Wed, 17 Jan 1996, Gordon McFarlane wrote:
>
>> Date: Wed, 17 Jan 1996 17:40:59 -0700
>> From: Gordon McFarlane
>> To: talisman@indiana.edu
>> Subject: natural impulses & "the subject of boys"
>>
>> Dear Friends:
>>

>>
>>         However, I do question his statement -  "You continue to make a
>> conceptual leap in identifying this practice of a slavemaster sleeping with
>> his boy slave with contemporary same-sex marriage, which is an illegitimate
>> semantic leap."  My understanding is that this "conceptual leap" was made by
>> the Guardian.  If it were not for the notes to the Aqdas, dealing with this
>> passage, I would not have the foggiest notion what the intent of this
>> passage was.   I also feel strongly that this particular phrase  of the
>> Aqdas must be considered in the larger context of the Baha'i teachings on
>> marriage and chastity.
>>         I would also question (not deny)  the validity of Juan's claim that
>> "There are probably on the order of 120 million gays in the world (and many
>> more if we count everyone who has engaged in same-sex intimacy), which would
>> make a country the size of Japan"
>>         In the first place, Juan's obvious expertise in his own field of
>> study does not necessarily lend credence to statements made concerning
>> matters outside of that field. This isn't anti-intellectualism. I wouldn't
>> consult a nuclear physicist,  historian or  for that matter a brain surgeon
>> on matters of human sexuality.  Where does this 120 million figure come from
>> - seems rather speculative and arbitrary to me.
>>         Secondly, to catagorize "everyone who has engaged in same-sex
>> intimacy" as "gay" seems to not only overlook a very conspicuous stage of
>> male sexual development, but is also rather insulting to the gay community.
>> To catagorize the type of intimate sexual activity of pedophiles, prisoners,
>> etc. (or, for that matter, the curious antics of early adolescent boys)
>> with  "monogamous intimate relationships between two adult same sex partners
>> does something of an injustice to the cause of the later.
>>         Perhaps, Juan, I misunderstand the phrase "same-sex intimacy".  I
>> have "intimate" relationships with a number of males but this does not
>> involve intimate sexual relations although it does sometimes  physical
>> contact.    I think many of us have a very different understanding of
what "intimacy" is
>> and aint.
>>         Generally, I attempt to avoid being drawn into discussions on
>> homosexuality as it is a very complex, polarized, emotional, opinionated and
>> seemingly irresolvable issue of which I have very little understanding. I
>> also have friends who identify themselves as gay or lesbian who I admire and
>> respect, and who have, on several occasions, made inquiries about the Faith
>> and the Baha'i attitude toward homosexuality.  Until recently such questions
>> have usually provoked me to indulge in some rather artful circumlocution.
>> Now, I am a bit more direct and honest.
>>
>>       I do not buy the argument that, because homosexuality is a "natural
>> proclivity" rather than an aquired taste it is therefore acceptable.
>>
>>         In the movie "The Crying Game", the kidnapped British soldier,
>> played by Forrest Whitaker, tells his I.R.A. captor, Fergus,     "you will
>> kill me".  Fergus asks, How can you be sure?   Whitaker says "because it's
>> in your nature" and proceeds to tell the story of the scorpion and the frog.
>> The frog refuses to take the scorpion across the water on it's back unill
>> the scorpion convinces him that he won't kill him. Half way across, the
>> scorpion stings the frog.  When the frog asks why the scorpion would pull
>> such a stunt, knowing that it would bring an end to them both, the scorpion
>> replies "I couldn't help it.  It's in my nature".  Fergus  makes friends
>> with the hostage, fate intervenes and Fergus doesn't have to knock him off.
>> Whitaker  get's squashed by a British tank during a raid on the I.R.A.
enclave.
>> 	The guilt ridden Fergus goes to England to look up the soldiers girlfriend,
>> becomes attracted to her, discovers that  alas  the lass is a laddie,
>> becomes quite unattracted, then develops an interesting, one might say
>> loving, but non-sexual relationship.  He/she says "I can't help what I am".
>> (it's in his/her nature).   As it turns out, It is not in Fergus's nature to
>> be a terrorist or murder and he ends up taking the wrap for the a murder to
>> save his friend - probably realizing the problems he/she would have in
>> prison, and  at the end of the story, when he/she asks Fergus why he took
>> the wrap,  he repeats the story about frog and the scorpion.
>> 	What's the point?  Do we behave according to "our nature" even if it is "in
>> our nature" to do "unnatural" things?
>> 	This whole business of natural proclivities has me dumbfounded.  On the one
>> hand, I hear homosexuals argue that their sexual orientation is natural and
>> innate, and cannot be described as being "against nature".   I can accept
>> that much of the argument.   On the other hand, I am told that what I am
>> equally convinced is a "natural revulsion" on my part for homosexual acts,
>> is unnatural;  - a socialized condition imposed upon me by a patriarachal,
>> homophobic and misogynist society.   I cannot buy that argument.
>>         I have, like most people,  certain natural tendencies which deter me
>> from behaving in a manner destructive to myself or others.  Similarly I have
>> natural tendencies which I must suppress in order to avoid damaging myself
>> or others. The Faith helps me to suppress the later.
>> 	If we simply did what it is "in our nature to do" there would be no need
>> for the Revelation of Baha'u'llah.  Human nature isn't static. It can either
>> evolve and be fine tuned through divine revelation, spiritual disclipine,
>> and education or it can degenerate by our succumbing to it's every whim.
>>         I am not not equating homosexuality with psychopathic behavior, but
>> there is as much scientific evidence to suggest that psychopathy is
>> genetically and biologically determined. Modern science has not found a cure
>> for it.  Even Abdu'l Baha, in one of his tablets, speaks of a "sense of
>> shame" (conscience) which "some do not posess".   If one does not posess a
>> "sense of shame", or "conscience" it is not "in their nature"  to be detered
>> from commiting acts of unnatural cruelty.  This does not justify or
>> legitimize the psycopaths behavior.  Laws are needed for such people.
>>         Man, am I treading on thin ice! I'd better skiidaddle outa here.
>>
>> LBG's
>> Gord.
>>
>>
>> ---
>> Gordon McFarlane            e-mail: MCFARLANE@upanet.uleth.ca
>> 919  11th Sreet South
>> T1J2P7
>> (403)327-2987
>>
>>
>---------------------------------------------------------------------------
-----
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>
****************************************************
"whatever seeks to exist and endure also desires to be one; for without
unity, existence itself cannot be sustained"       (Boethius 524 A.D.)
****************************************************
Gordon A. McFarlane                       e-mail:  McFarlane@upanet.uleth.ca
919  11th Street South                      phone: (403) 327-2987
TlJ 2P7

=END=

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 96 22:27 PST
To: derekmc@ix.netcom.com
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Mystics Overboard
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Secret Powerful Uncle Derek:

I know the Mystical Conference is about to happen at Bosch -- are you sure
you have enough copies of MAN OVERBOARD?
I forgot to ask if the conference registration fee included the cost of the
mandatory copy of Man Overboard required for proper spiritual insights and
the inducement of non-linear altered states.  Perhaps you should post a
dainty, carefully worded message to the rascals on Talisman and the devout
souls on Baha'i ST and let them know that no one can attain the shores of
certitude without first immersing themselves in Man Overboard and that you
will be issuing lovely hard cover copies to each and every registrant and
automatically adding \$19.95 to their fee.  If I can make it to Bosch for the
event, I will certainly autograph each copy. That alone will make the event
a spiritual experience!!  I think perhaps I can fund my travel costs by
doing a "Lucy-Like" advice booth by setting up a table in your coffee shop
with a little sign that says "Ask Dr. Burl" and I can do psychic readings
for five bucks a whack, or ten if they look like a liberal.  If anyone asks
for  career advice, I shall reccommend that they devote their days to the
study of economics.

Burl

PS: MAN OVERBOARD was on display in Orlando, Florida at the Baha'i
Conference on Social and Economic Development. I didn't know that until last
night when a Baha'i Pioneer to Scandinavia  who was at the conference told me!

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

From: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 02:50:51 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: re: no subject

Dear all  ,

I must say I agree that social units have a reality . At least in some
metaphysical sense I find the House of Worship both a social reality and an
individual reality- embedded within the human soul- its reality,  and yet in
eternity a reality which included yet transcends its social presence and its
appearance within the soul .

I dont think the appearence of "liberalism " is hinged to theology
however . Weber thesis has some real limitations even when applied to
Calvinist Geneva. It is too late to go into all that .

In an American context the *Republican* or civic humanist tradition  as
Pocock , Bailyn , Banning and Wood would describe it found the basis of order
in the polity . To the extent they were right about the "Ideological Origins
of the American Revolution" many of the founders were concerned about virtue
and fortuna as Pocock calls it. How to prevent the inevitable decay of all
societies and governments.* Liberalism" as a philosophy  substituted the
basis of society or order in economics e.g. an emerging capitalist order
rather than in the polity or state . The work of Joyce Appleby is I think

The American state system is a product of Madison and his pessimism
regarding human nature who wanted a state which would guarantee properity
rights primarilly . This state would balance the competing intersts of
individuals and groups and was to tilt the balance in either direction id it
was too much off course . Along with Hamilton  he was committed to an
expansionist *economy * though with les of the triumphal "heroics of Hamilton
. At any rate both saw the future iterms of instrumental reason as applied
primarliiy to economic life and the 'state " having a role in making this as
orderly or stable as possible .

That brings me to TJ - irreducible Jeffersonian that I am - I must say he
was not a liberal he was a genuine democrat.  There is a huge difference
between the view of human nature , the purpose of life , the role of the
state , and the basis and ends of social order in Jefferson compared to
others .  We have in this country a home grown tradition of radical democracy
that is very . very compatible with the Faith of Bahau llah  and which that
Faith provides the spiritual underpinnings that could make Jeffersons vision
of life a living reality. If we could learn to tap it we might tap the
wellsprinhs of isealism and hope which lie dormant in so many people .  I
think this will require that we not make dichotomies betwen "old orders" and
"new orders" , much of the new order is pretty old stuff .

My read for instance on Bahau llah saying the "prevailing order appeareth to
be lamentably defective" has to do with political amd religious despotism ,
European imperiaism , systems of patriarchy , the callous disregard for human
beings in unbrideled capitalism, the rape of "nature' by a system of
industrialism, and the unhinging of all these from the *Remembrance * of God
and a system of ethics which would grow out of it . I have never thought ,
for better or for worse that it implied a new order / old order dichotomy
where new meant the forms of the Bahai community and all else was old order
and  "lamentably defective".

Hopefully one of these  first few days I will have time and the mental
enrgy to elaborate more fully on new and old  and Jefferson vis a vis his
liberal contemporaries.

warm regards ,
Terry

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 96 01:13 PST
To: milkman@ibl.bm (Alec Bourne)
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Tattooless in Seattle (& everywhere?) (fwd)
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>
>I've been told, that somewhere in the aqdas.. it is said that we should not
>make ourselves into objects for the amusement of others < massive
>paraphrasing here> and that this has in turn
>been interpreted as, do not tattoo, or pierce, or modify your body.. such
>that it becomes something of amuzement to others.

1.   Interpreted by *WHOM*???   Last time I looked, the number of authorized
interpretors of the Sacred Texts was rather limited.

2. The line from the Aqdas is "beware lest you become the plaything of the
ignorant." If stupid people come over to your house and rub your tummy, are
you are in violation of God's Most Holy Book?

3. Basic point of Baha'i Law: That which is not espressly forbidden is
allowed.  Is there anywhere in the Sacred Texts where tatoos are espressly
forbidden?

Burl

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 08:32:27 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: natural impulses & "the subject of boys"
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Gordon McFarlane" ,
"Talisman"

> Similarly, if we dissaprove of any of the
>aforementioned habits or lifestyles our dissapproval does not constitute
>persecution of that individual.

Dear Brother Gordon,

I can see you are trying to be just--and I can see you are expressing
your own conflictedness.  Personally, I feel that it is unkind to express
our distaste in any situation.  I'm not limiting that to
homosexuality--and I'm not saying that I am free from expressing unkind
things as I certainly am not.  It just seems that so few are willing to
look with kindness on the struggle of our Gay and Lesbian brothers and
sisters.  I'm not saying we are required to agree with the tastes of
those with that persuasion but we are required to understand, not condemn
as no one knows the heart of another, and express loving acceptance.

another--imagine the predicament of homosexuals who by the very label
they bear are considered de facto--bad.  I know I can't sleep at night if
I ponder my own personal "badness", and I don't want to be the source of
such thoughts to my Gay and Lesbian brothers and sisters.  I  don't don't
want to be the cause of any human a moment of hurt.  I know that's not
possible but I try to find my orientation of life in that practice.

Loving greetings
Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 08:42:24 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Tattooless in Seattle (& everywhere?) (fwd)
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Alec Bourne" , "Talisman" ,
"Burl  Barer"

>
>
>############################
>## # ze von unt only Milkmeister  #####
>###  Ze Milkiator############
>###########################
>
>
>

Dear Doctor Milk,

I've been trying to fit *trout mask replica* into my signature but some
how it doesn't fit with the decor.
Do you have any decorating advise?

Troutless in Lubbock

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Mon, 12 Feb 1996 10:14:50 EST
Subject:       Re: Mystics Overboard

Dear Burl,

expense of taxpayer's money? I don't think talisman is an
advertising agency for the "BB's Intellectual Inc." Is it?
Now, let's see how I will get the wrath of a small corporation on
this one! I think I am gonna be careful when I cross the street and
make sure there is no big truck with BB's Intellectual Inc. sign on
it, so that my kids will not scrape my body off of the pavement.

sincerely lovingly,
quanta

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 10:14:40 -0500 (EST)
From: Stephen Johnson
To: bahai-campus-forum@bcca.org, bahai-discuss@bcca.org, talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Searching for Baha'i Lawyers (especially Brent)

Allah'u'Abha Friends,

Pardon the bandwidth on this.

I am considering a change of career to law and would appreciate speaking
to any Baha'is who are currently lawyers for the 'inside' view.  Any
Baha'i lawyers out there?

I would also like to speak to Brent Poirier (for the same reason) yet have
forgotten his address.  Could someone forward it to me?

Stephen Johnson

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Mon, 12 Feb 1996 10:27:53 EST
Subject:       Re: the choice to be celibate.

Dear ...

The quote in question "A heterosexual has a choice to be celibate
and a homesexual does not" belongs to little quanta.
I must admit my own words. Could not sit by and have BB accused of it.

love,
quanta

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 18:57:00 +0000
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: S.N.Lambden@newcastle.ac.uk (Stephen Lambden)
Subject: *Lawh-i kull al-ta`am* TB 2A:01 (Pt.2)

>Beloved Tarjumites/Talismanians,
>
>        What follows is the second (corrected) posting of Pt II of my slightly
>revised prov. trans. of the *Lawh-i kull al-ta`am* ("Tablet of All Food"; c.
>1854 CE) of Baha'u'llah. It first appeared with commentary in BSB 3:1 (June
>1984), pp.4-67. Various texts were consulted though I mostly followed the
>superior ms in INBA 36:268-277. The texts printed in Ishraq Khavari's
>*Ma'ida-yi Asmani* (4:265-276) and *Rahiq-i makhtum* (2:416-426) contain quite
>a few textual errors.No critical edition exists. The Provisional translation
>which follows remains a ROUGH DRAFT. Notification of errors of translation and
>inadequacies of style would be greatly appreciated.

Love and salutations,

Steve

[VI]

[1]  O Thou Friend! Since you were irradiated through the orient
light of the radiance of the splendours of the Morn of Eternity (subh
al-azal) --  the lights of which [or, of whom] have filled the horizons [2]
-- and been captivated by the winning ways of the Light of Endless Duration
-- the traces of which [or, of whom] have appeared upon the Temples of the
Orient Light -- [3] then know that the intention of "food" in these days in
which the Sun shineth in the centre of Heaven and the Lamp of Eternality
hath shed splendour upon the Luminary of the Realm of Divine Cloud, is none
other than the Bearer of the Cause. [4] "Israel" in this connection,
signifieth the Primal Will by means of which God created all who are in the
heavens and on the earth and what is between them. [5] The "children of
Israel" are those servants who were captivated by the Light of that Primal
Will in the "year sixty" (= 1260 AH = 1844 CE) and thereafter until the
"Day" on which He shall assemble the people before the Lord of the Worlds.
[6] God desireth not that anyone be oppressed but the people wrong their
own selves. [7] So know that the Light of God hath ever been established
upon the Throne of Favour and will ever remain the like of what
it was; though the people neither comprehend nor bear witness.

[8] Since We have lifted you up to the summit of the Mount of
Light, elevated you to the peak of the Mount of Servitude in the Land of
Exhilaration, [9] enabled you to drink deep of the Water of the Divine
Oneness from the Camphor Fount at the hand of the All-Beauteous Joseph,
[10] and given you rest in the Cradle of Tranquillity about which the
delighted and your essence gladdened -- [11] then thank God Who created you
aforetime by a command on His part and made you to be numbered among those
servants who are rightly guided through the verses of God.

[VII]

[1] Now, at this moment, I cease not to complain of my sorrow and
anguish unto God for He alone acknowledgeth My anxiety, is aware of My
plight and heareth My lamentation. [2] By He Who hath made the Bird[s] of
Light to soar in the Land of the Theophany! [3] None is to be found as
dejected as I, for now
do I dwell at the point of dust in obscure ignonimy. [4] There is no
possessor of Spirit in the Dominion of God except he weepeth over Me to the
degree that the heavens are well-nigh cleft asunder, the earth split open
and the mountains levelled. [5] This inasmuch as the Eye of Time hath not
seen anyone as
oppressed as I. [6] And I, verily, have been patient and forbearing; have
sat between the hands of God, trusted in Him and committed the affair unto
Him, perchance He might comfort Me and protect Me from all that the people
have committed.

[7] Then know, O Kamal! If I should expound that verse [Qur'an 3:
87] from this day until the days find their consummation in *al-mustaghath*
("the One Invoked for Help"; abjad 2001] -- which is the Day when the
people will rise up before the Countenance of the Living One, the Wondrous,
the extent to which God would favour me through His grace and bounty [with
numerous explanations] could not be estimated. [8] This inasmuch as the
Mystery of the Divine Oneness hath been set in motion, the Ocean of Endless
Duration hath surged and the
Countenance of Light in the Heavens of the Realm of Unknowing, hath beamed
forth from the right side of the Tree of the Command.[9]  This, in these
days, in which the Sun of Manifestation hath risen in unique manner though
the people are neither cognisant of its magnitude nor mindful of its
subtlety.

[10]  So Ah! Alas! If they [the people] could but perceive, the
Proof would never be hidden from them nor the Favour be beyond their grasp.
[11] Say: It is not for you to ask why it is so lest you join partners with
God Who created you and aided you through a Light from before Him; if, that
is, you are of those who truly believe.

[12] Give ear, O Kamal! to the voice of this lowly, this forsaken
ant, that hath hid itself in its hole, and Whose desire is to depart from
your midst, and vanish from your sight, by reason of that which the hands
of men have wrought. [13] God, verily, hath been witness between Me and His
servants. God it is Who beareth witness unto Me in all respects.

[14]  So Ah! Alas! If the Last Point, the Countenance of My Love,
Quddus were alive he would assuredly weep over my plight and would lament
that which hath befallen me. [15] And I, for My part, would at this moment
beseech his eminence and supplicate his holiness that he would enable Me to
ascend unto the court of His might and recline on the cushion of his
sanctity as I was wont to do in those days [now past] when I was free of
the aforementioned misfortunes. [16] O Lord! Cast patience upon Me and make
Me to be victorious over the transgressors.

[VIII]

[1]  O Thou Faithful One! If you be of those who dwell in the
Snow-White Forest, the Isle of the Criterion (al-Furqan),  then know that
"food" signifieth the [personified] Custodianship (? al-wilaya)   which God
decreed for His people. [2] The intention of "Israel" in this connection is
the Point of the Criterion (al-Furqan = the Qur'an) and of the "children of
Israel" His trustees [= the Imams] who succeeded Him [Muhammad] and by
means of Whom God recompenseth His righteous servants.

[3]  And if you be of those who dwell in the Crimson Isle, the
Orchard of the Exposition (al-Bayan), then know that We abandon the "food"
[of the Islamic wilaya?]   and desire the Primal Point [the Bab], the Pure
Wine of the Divine Oneness in an elevated station. [4] The intention of
"Israel" in this connection is the Last Countenance [= Quddus ?], the
Mystery of Endless Duration in an elevated station [5] and the Countenance
of Light, the Disengaged Theophany, the Temple of the Divine Oneness [=
Mirza Yahya?) in an elevated station whom the aggressors caused to be
imprisoned in the land and concealed in the cities. [6] So praised be God
above that which the hands of the People commit. And God is not unaware of
the actions of the people.

[IX]

[1]  Since, at this moment, the fire of love surgeth in the heart
of al-Baha [Baha'u'llah], the Dove of Servitude singeth in the Heaven of
the Divine Cloud  and the Bird (Hoopoe) of Light warbleth in the midst of
the firmaments, [2]the Sinaitic Tree burneth of itself through the Fire of
its own self above the Ark of the Testimony beyond Mount Qaf, [in] the Land
of Realization,[3] and the Ant of Servitude hideth in the Vale of the
Divine Oneness in this "Night" with mystic fidelity, wherefore do I desire
to further expound that verse [Qur'an 3:87].  [4] This inasmuch as God
hath, at this moment, informed me about it through His grace and bounty.
And He, verily, is the Mighty, the Generous.

[5]  Then bear witness that "food" signifieth the Ocean of the
Unseen which is hidden in the Scrolls of Light and treasured up in the
Inscribed Tablets. [6] "Israel" signifieth the Manifestation of the Command
in these days and the "children of Israel" the people of the Bayan. [7] And
that "food" was allowed for them [the Babis]; that is, for all who desire
to ascend unto the Heaven of Bounty and to drink of the Water of
Manifestation [or Pure Water] from that Cup, the Goblet of Servitude, which
resembleth naught but a shadow in the land. [8] I, however, ask God's
forgiveness on account of that limitation. So
praised be God, One worthy of praise and mighty beyond the attempts of the
negligent to describe Him.

>                                    [X]
>
>        [1]   So Ah! Alas! If there should surge upon me a sprinkling from
>the Ocean of Divine Authorization from the Sovereign of the Realm of the
>Divine Cloud and King of Glory, [2] I would expound that verse [Qur'an
>3:87] with the accents of the spiritual ones, the sanctified myriads, and
>the melodies of the enraptured ones. [3] Since I have not inhaled, however,
>the fragrance of realization or accomplishment then that which I have
>already set forth for you must suffice you; for it is sufficient proof unto
>those who were, in the days of their Lord, given to remembrance.
>
>        [4]  In view of the fact that you have sought and derived warmth
>from the Fire of Love and have found pleasure in the charm of the trace of
>ink in these apposite Tablets, then bear witness and be assured that I
>[Baha'u'llah] have claimed naught but servitude to God, the True One.[5]
>And God is my arbitrator against that which the people falsely allege.
>
>
>        [6]   Say: `Woe unto you on account of that which your hands have
>committed; hereafter shall you be brought before the Knower of that which
>is hidden and that which is manifest [see Qur'an 9:106b] and assuredly, in
>this respect, be questioned.'
>
>        [7] Say: `O People of the Concourse! Be not astonished at the
>handiwork of God, the mercy of God and His blessings upon you, if you are
>of those who are informed. [8] Fear God! and know that the handiwork of God
>radiates forth in the image[s?] of the Lamp of Eternality among the
>artistry of the people. How is it that you neither consider this nor bear
>witness unto it?'
>
>                                   [XI]
>
>        [1]  Then Ah! Alas! By He Who hath restrained the dove of sorrow in
>the breast of al-Baha' [Baha'u'llah]! [2] All that I have witnessed from
>the day on which I first drank the pure milk from the breast of My mother
>until this moment hath been effaced from my memory in consequence of that
>which the hands of the people have committed. [3] And God is aware of all that
>pertains to the people though they are not informed.
>
>        [4] Say: `O People of the Realm of the Divine Cloud! Issue forth
>from your habitations and present yourselves in the sanctum of Light, the
>manifest Divine Cloud, the most-great House of God, as hath been decreed,
>with the permission of God, the Exalted Who beareth witness, in the Tablet
>of the Heart.'
>
>                                  [XII]
>
>        [1] I, verily, conclude this discourse in that the Dove of Light
>sang forth aforetime at the moment of its [His] arrival in the Land of
>Exhilaration and warbled with the accents of the heart. [2] And you know, O
>my beloved, that, for the sake of God, I desired authorization since
>patience, on account of my love for the unveiled beauty of God, had
>departed from me. [3] And you know that a son of adultery wilfully desired
>to shed My blood. [4] Nay, by the presence of Thy Might! I do not pledge
>allegiance unto him, either in secret or publicly. [5] It is God alone Who
>causeth the day of the spilling of My blood to draw nigh and when My tears
>shall be sprinkled upon the dust.[6] So, O would that this My day were the day
>of the shedding of my blood, for my ardent desire is for the soil. [7] So
>praised be God, One Worthy of Praise and Mighty, above that which the
>associators assert with respect to His description. And praise be to God,
>Wondrous Lord of all the Worlds.
>

>
>                                * * * * * *
>
>>
>PS. EARLIER POSTINGS OF THE  *Lawh-i kull al-ta`am* ("Tablet of All Food") in
>3 sections  should be consigned to the Babi-Baha'i geniza ('sacred bin').

*Surat al Kifaya* = TB 2A:02?? to follow.
>
>

Stephen N. Lambden
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 2PQ
England. U.K.

Voice/Fax. +44 [0] 191. 2818597
Email S.N.Lambden@ncl.ac.uk

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 18:56:10 +0000
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: S.N.Lambden@newcastle.ac.uk (Stephen Lambden)
Subject: *Lawh-i tibb* ("Tablet of Medicine") Pt.I

I'm posting this again because the one received nack from Talisman by me
was truncated!

>Hi Talismanians and Tarjumanites,
>
>In view of several requests that I post the PROVISIONAL translation of the
>Arabic text of the *Lawh-i tibb* ("Tablet of Medicine") there follows the
>article on the *Lawh-i tibb* ("Tablet of Medicine") which first appeared in
>BSB 6:4-7:2 (October 1992) pp.18-65. Corrections to the translation and not=
es
>(to follow) or other parts of the article would be much appreciated. It is =
due
>to be revised  and reprinted imminently (BSB second editions; copyrighted
>Newcastle upon Tyne: Hurqalya Publications) and should not be cited without
>due acknowledgement. The introduction and commentary/notes were written by
>myself while Khazeh Fananapazir and I did the translation jointly. The
>transliteration will not be fully or adequately indicated as this will beco=
me
>garbled on a proportion of your PC's e-mail software.
>
>Salutations,
>
>Steve
>
>
>*THE TABLET OF MEDICINE (LAWH-I TIBB) OF BAHA'U'LLAH: A PROVISIONAL
>TRANSLATION WITH OCCASIONAL NOTES*.
>
>Introduction
>
>    The Arabic - Persian text of Baha'u'llah's Tablet of Medicine (Lawh-i
>tibb) [fn 1] is to be dated to the early `Akka' period of his ministry (ear=
ly
>1870's?). It was addressed to a Baha'i named Mirza Muhammad Rida'-yi Tabib-=
i
>Yazdi, a physician of the traditional school. The text is translated and
>selectively annotated below. The tentative translation is highly provisiona=
l.
>The notes are designed to clarify what is a sometimes difficult text which
>could, at certain points, have been translated in quite a number of differe=
nt
>ways. Only a few of the verses or terms contained within the *Lawh-i tibb*
>are commented upon. It is hoped that the translation and notes will be of
>interest to Baha'is in general and to those who are practitioners of modern
>medicine. Doubtless, in the future, scholars expert in both Baha'i doctrine
>and in the history of science / medicine will write learned and comprehensi=
ve
>commentaries upon this important Tablet.
>
>     As indicated, not all of the numerous Baha'i texts which might have an
>expository bearing on the Tablet of Medicine  can be cited below. The
>following letter of Shoghi Effendi makes some centrally important points:
>
>     "The Tablet to a Physician was addressed to a man who was a student of
>the old type of healing prevalent in the East and familiar with the
>terminology used in those days, and. He addresses him in terms used by the
>medical men of those days. These terms are quite different from those used =
by
>modern medicine, and one would have to have a deep knowledge of this former
>school of medicine to understand the questions Baha'u'llah was
>elucidating..Baha'u'llah has recommended that people seek the help and advi=
ce
>of experts and doctors: He does not say which school they should belong to.
>         Likewise there is nothing in the teachings about whether people
>should eat their food cooked or raw: exercise or not exercise: resort to
>specific therapies or not: nor is it forbidden to eat meat.
>          Baha'u'llah says teaching is the greatest of all services, but He
>does not mean one should give up medicine to teach." [fn 2]
>
>      Shoghi Effendi indicated in a letter dated 14th January 1932 that the
>first few Arabic paragraphs of the Tablet of Medicine   contain useful advi=
ce
>for the maintenance of good health (see II:1ff).[fn 3] They echo those medi=
cal
>maxims and pieces of useful advice (fawa'id) found in a variety of Greek an=
d
>Islamic literatures -- generally speaking, a considerable proportion of
>Islamic medicine has Greek roots. Ullmann has written in the introduction t=
o
>his Islamic Medicine, "`Islamic medicine' did not grow up on Arab soil. Rat=
her
>it is the medicine of later Greek antiquity which was formulated in the Ara=
bic
>language in the south and west of the Mediterranean from the ninth century
>A.D." (p.xi). While the Qur'an contains little or no explicit medicine --
>neither the word doctor/physician nor medicine are mentioned (cf. Ullmann,
>p.4; Dols, review of Rahman p.417) -- this is more than made up for in the
>
>     From the early Islamic centuries compilations of medical wisdom
>attributed to the Prophet Muhammad were made by Sunni and Shi`i writers (se=
e
>the various
>*Tibb al-nabi/ Tibb al-nabawi*  works). [fn 4] Such major Sunni canonical
>collections of hadith as that of al-Bukhhari (810-870 CE) contain their own
>*Kitab al-tibb*("Book of Medicine"). Many medical or quasi-medical traditio=
ns
>were attributed to the Prophet Muhammad. It is nonetheless the case that "T=
he
>hadith  directly related to medicine are relatively few, usually late, and
>
>     The medical wisdom of the Twelver Shi`i Imams (*tibb al- a'immah*)  wa=
s
>likewise assiduously compiled (see Agha Buzurg al-Tihrani,*al-Dhari`a ila
>tasanif al-shi`a*  25 Vols Tehran / Najaf 1355/1936>, 15:135-144). [fn 6] A
>great many statements are attributed to the Twelver Imams that, in one way =
or
>another, have to do with medical matters or with bodily health. To the eigh=
th
>Imam `Ali al-Rida' (c.768-818 CE) is attributed *al-Risala al-dhahabiya /
>al-mudhahhaba fi'-tibb* ("The Golden Treatise..") a treatise on medical cur=
es
>and good health written for and at the request of the `Abbasid Caliph
>al-Mansur (text in Majlisi, *Bihar al-anwar* (2nd ed) LXII: 308-328).
>Commentaries are said to have been written on this Arabic treatise which ha=
ve
>been translated into Persian and Urdu (see W. Malelung, Ali al-Reza, EIr.
>2:877-8). [fn 7] There exists furthermore, a treatise in the Jabirean corpu=
s
>-- writings attributed to Jabir ibn Hayyan (c.103/721-c.200/815) -- certain=
of
>which Baha'u'llah drew upon -- entitled *Kitab al-tibb al-nabawi`ala ahl
>al-bayt* ("The Book of Prophetic Medicine) according to the view of the
>Household of  the Prophet").
>.
>     A multitude of other Shi`i works, which cannot possibly be even listed
>here, are relevant to the study of the background to the *Lawh-i tibb*.  Th=
e
>*Lawh-i tibb*  cannot be fully or adequately commented upon without some
>reference to its (Shi`i) Islamic background; not forgetting its pre-Islamic
>antecedants which will only at certain points in the notes below be
>cursorily indicated.
>
>     Sources known to the present writer only allow the *sitz im leben*
>("setting in life") of the *Lawh-i tibb* to be inadequately sketched. In
>volume three of his *The Revelation of Baha'u'llah*  (Oxford: George Ronald
>1983) Adib Taherzadeh gives something of a summary of key points of the Tab=
let
>of Medicine  (see 3: 358-360). He translates a passage from Haji Muammad
>Tahir-i Malamiri's memoirs, the *Khatirat-i-Malamiri*,  about Aqa Mirza
>Muhammad-Rida' (the recipient of the *Law-i tibb*):
>
>     "One of the early believers who embraced the Faith when Siyyid
>Yahyay-i-Darabi, known as Vahid, came to Yazd, was  qa M=B0rza Muammad-Riay=
-i
>ab=B0b. He was a skilled and distinguished physician, and an embodiment of =
grace
>and steadfastness. The Pen of the Most High revealed the Law-i-Tibb in his
>honour. In that exalted Tablet, Baha'u'llah states that the mere visit of a
>physician who has drunk deep of the wine of His love will cure the patient.
>Mirza      Muhammad-Rida was truly the fulfilment of these words of
>Baha'u'llah. He used to cure the patient by administering very simple
>remedies. Truly, he possessed wonderful qualities which made him a very
>special person in the community of the Most Great Name. Owing to his intens=
e
>piety he became highly disturbed when Mirza Yahya broke the Covenant. As a
>result he was bewildered and stunned; he even became hesitant in the Cause =
for
>a short time. Then it was as though Divine Providence sent Mulla Zaynu'l-`
>Abidin, a native of Najafabad (he was entitled by Baha'u'llah as
>Zaynu'l-Muqarribin) to Yazd in order to calm his agitation and dispel his
>doubts. Zaynu'l-Muqarribin at first stayed in the house of this servant in =
the
>district of Malamir, but when he learned of the intense anguish and distres=
s
>that Mirza Muhammad-Rida was subjected to, he changed his residence and sta=
yed
>the circumstances of the Revelation of Baha'u'llah. He later received many
>Tablets from the Pen of the Most High, and served the Faith of Baha'u'llah
>with devotion and love till the end of his life. He was about eighty years =
old
>when he passed away." [fn 8]
>
>*FOOTNOTES TO INTRODUCTION*
>
>
>[1] The *Lawh-i tibb* was first published in *Majmu`a-yi alwah-i mubaraka*
>(Cairo, 1920, Rep. Wilmette, Illinois: BPT., 1981, 222-226 (Reproduced and
>translated below).
>
>[2] From a letter written on on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual
>believer, December 18, 1945 cited UHJ:1984 -- see also the letter printed i=
n
>BSB 4:3-4 (April 1990), 58.
>
>[3] Part of this letter of Shoghi Effendi reads, "With the
>appearance of every Revelation a new insight is created in man
>and this in turn expresses itself in the growth of science. This
>has happened in past dispensations and we find its earliest
>fruits in our present day. What we see however is only the
>beginning. With the spiritual awakening of man this force will
>develop and marvelous results will become manifest. Among other
>phases of human learning the medical science will have a place.
>There is a Tablet of Medicine that Baha'u'llah has revealed and
>which is translated into English. That does not contain much of
>scientific informations [sic.] but has some interesting advices
>for keeping healthy." (cited LDG 2:21 )
>
>[4] Refer, for example, Cyril Elgood, `Tibb al-Nabi or Medicine of
>the Prophet, Being a Translation of Two Works of the same Name: I.
>The *Tibb-ul-Nabbi* [*Tibb al-Nabi*] of Al-Suyuti; II. The Tibb-ul-
>Nabbi of Mahmud bin Mohammad al-Chaghhayni' [=3D the scientist-
>astronomer Mamud ibn `Umar Chagmini] in *Osiris*  Vol.14 (1962)
>33-192. With respect to the al-Chaghmini's medical tract Elgood
>writes,"Next is the version by Mahmud bin `Umar Jaghmini [=3D
>Chaghmini] of which I also present a translation as a contrast to
>the much longer version of al-Suyuti and as a specimen of the
>aphoristic form of writing which was once so popular in Persia.
>This is written in Arabic. Mahmud also wrote in Persian a book
>called *Qanunchi fi al-Tibb*, being an extract from the Canon of
>Avicenna. The edition that I used for my translation is a small
>book lithographed in Teheran in I888/89 and is in my private
>collection." (p.43). On page 40 of the aforementioned article
>Elgood writes, "A reference to the Encyclopaedia of Hajji Khalifa
>[written 1658 CE] shows that he devotes a special section in his
>work to what he calls *`Ilm al-Tibb al-Nabbawi* or *The Science of
>Prophetic Medicine*. Here he mentions seven different works on this
>subject which were existing in his day and were known to him. The
>authors whom he names as having made these collections are Nu`aym
>Ahmad of Ispahan [948-1038 CE], Abu al-`Abbas Ja`far Mustaghfiri,
>Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti [1445-1505 CE], Abu Hassan `Ali al-Rida [the
>8th Imam, Imam Ria' see below], Habib Nishapuri, Habib al-Thani,
>and `Abd al-Malik bin Habib." (transliteration altered). In the books
>of the `Prophetic Medicine' (*Tibb al-nabawi*)  innumerable
>Khaldun (1332-1406) as noted by Ullmann "alone has said clearly
>that essentially this is bedouin medicine and can have no claim to
>be divine revelation and therefore cannot be obligatory under
>religious law." (p.5).
>
>[5] M.W. Dols, review of Rahman in *Hist. Sci.* xxvi (1988), 417.
>
>[6] The recently published Batool Ispahany (trans.) & Andrew J. Newman
>(Ed.), *Islamic Medical Wisdom, The ibb al-A'imma* ([=3D Medicine of
>the Imams] London: The Muhammadi Trust 1991) is a collection of
>statements of certain Twelver Imams compiled by Abu `Atab `Abd
>Allah and al-Husayn, the sons of Bisam b. Sabur -- Bistam was a
>companion of the sixth Imam Abu Abd Allah Ja`far b. Muhammad al-
>Sadiq (d. 148/765) and the seventh Imam Abu al-Hasan Musa b. Ja`far
>al-Kazim (d. 183/799) (cf. * al-Dhari`a *  15:139-140). In the preface
>to this work Newman writes, "There is no dearth of Twelver
>Shi`i medical texts. Agha Buzurg al-Tehrani (d. 1389/1970) in his
>massive bibliography of Twelver texts [see above] devoted several
>pages to listing texts on medicine completed from the earliest
>years following the disappearance of the Twelfth Imam up to the
>last century." See for further details ibid p. xxxiv ff.
>
>fi al-tibb al-nabawi, al-risala al-dhahabiya, awwal risala fi al-
>tibb al-nabawi*, (Beirut: Dar al-manahil, 1412/1991). This volume
>commences with material highlighting the glories of the "people of
>the House of the Prophet" (Pt.I pp.11-68) followed by an
>hagiographical biography of `Ali al-Rida' (Pt.II 69-110); the text
>of Imam Rida's "Golden Treatise" (Pt.III pp. 111-126) and two
>further sections; a prolegomenon to the understanding of ancient
>medical books and books of the medicine of the Prophet (Pt.IV pp.
>127-137) the *Risala dhahabiya*  and an exposition and glosses on
>some of its terms (Pt. V pp. 139-183).
>
>[8] See *Khatirat-i- Malamiri*. Hoffheim-Langenhain: Baha'i-Verlag, 149/199=
2,
>58-9 cited in translation in A. Taherzadeh, *The Revelation of Baha'u'llah*
>Vol. 3 (Oxford: George Ronald, 1983), 359.
>
>
>                                *********
>
>
>PS. No time to proof read thoroughly -- prov. trans. to follow this VERY
>HASTILY WRITTEN INTRODUCTION.
>

Stephen N. Lambden
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 2PQ
England. U.K.

Voice/Fax. +44 [0] 191. 2818597
Email S.N.Lambden@ncl.ac.uk

Stephen N. Lambden
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 2PQ
England. U.K.

Voice/Fax. +44 [0] 191. 2818597
Email S.N.Lambden@ncl.ac.uk

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 18:56:19 +0000
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: S.N.Lambden@newcastle.ac.uk (Stephen Lambden)
Subject: *Lawh-i kull al-ta`am* TB 2A:01 (Intro).

** MAJOR TITLED TABLETS OF THE THE IRAQ PERIOD 1853-1863 CE (TB. 2A -> 2C) **

I have earlier posted a note and provisional translation of the
earliest extant Tablet of Baha'u'llah dating from the pre-Iraq period,
the>*Rashh-i ama'*This may be chronologically identified as TB [=Tablet of
Baha'u'llah].1:01. It appears to be the only extant writing of the
Babi>period 1844-50 (??) and the few years prior to Baha'u'llah's dwelling
in Iraq (1853-1863) --I personally feel that material will be discovered --
if it has'nt already been -- dating from these years.

In certain of his writings Baha'u'llah claims to have written a
great deal during his (early) years  in Iraq:

"After Our arrival [in Iraq] We revealed as a copious rain, by
the>aid  of God and His Divine grace and mercy, Our verses, and sent them
to>various parts of the world."

Relatively few of these writings, however, are published or readily
available; especially those written prior to the late 1850's. Those which
are printed or may be identified in mss. contain many hitherto neglected
features of interest. They may be divided into three (unequal) groups
totalling more than 30 titled Tablets;

TB.2A [a year or so; largely Baghdad] -- only a few known and titled Tablets.

TB.2B [approx. 2 years Kurdistan/Sulaymaniyya 1854-6] -- less than ten
known titled Tablets.

TB.2C [8 years].The majority of Tablets from the Iraq period date from the
last eight years (1856-63).

TB.2A

During the first Iraq period [April 1853--> April 1854] Baha'u'llah
was largely resident in Baghdad. This period is that of writngs composed in
Iraq before the withdrawal to `Iraqi Kurdistan in April1854 CE.

* TB.2A-01 = *Lawh-i Kull al-ta`am*  [Arabic] ("The Tablet of All Food").

This Tablet was addressed to Hajji Mirza Kamal al-Din Naraqi (d. Naraq c.
1298-9 / c.1881). An inadequate printed text is printed in *Ma'ida-yi
asmani* 4:265-276 and a slightly better one in *Rahiq-i makhtum*
2:416-426). A superior photocopied  ms. is to be found in INBAMC 36:268-277
(see following postings)

The *Lawh-i Kull al-ta`am* is, loosely speaking,  an esoteric
commentary on Qur'an 3:87 [93], "All food (kull al-ta`am)  was lawful
to>the Children of Israel save what Israel [=Jacob] forbade for himself
before
the Torah was sent down. Say: `Bring you the Torah now, and recite it, if
ye are truthful." (trans. Arberry).`Abu'l-Hasan `Ali al-Wahidi (d.468/1075)
in his *Asbab al-nuzul* ("Circumstances of the Revelations" of quran'ic
verses)  has explained that the revelation of Qur'an 3:87 was
occassioned>by Jews contesting the claim of Muhammad to follow the faith of
Abraham
since he ate the meat and drank the milk of the camel -- allegedly
forbidden by Abraham (cf. Genesis 32:32[33]). Hence the revelation of the
verse in question (see Searle, *The Bible and the Qur'an*, 111). Informed by
Sufi terminology and Babi concerns, Baha'u'llah's spiritual or eisegetical
explanation operates on another level than that indicated by the *Sitz im
Leben* (original `setting in life') of a "paradisiacal" Qur'anic verse
[Q.3:87], deemed a  "choice fruit, divine song and heavenly pearl", with
"subtle meanings endless in their infinitude." (III:7).

Probably written in late 1853 or early 1854 (1270 AH) it is
essentially a reply to a question of the Babi Hajji  Mirza  Kamal al-Din
meeting Mirza Yahya from whom he initially requested a commentary on Qur'an
3:87. Apparently unimpressed with Mirza Yahya's response (no longer
extant?) he sought enlightenment from Baha'u'llah.

Written in a somewhat abstruse and gramatically loose Arabic
revelatory style, a variety of meanings are given to the terms "food"
(ta`am), "Israel" and "children of Israel" in the *Lawh-i kull al-ta`am*.
Towards the beginning of this "tablet" the mystical significance of "food"
(ta`am) is related to a hierarchy of paradises and metaphysical realms
well-known in theosophical Sufism; those of *Hahut*  (= the realm of the
Divine Ipseity); *Lahut* (= the realm of the Divine Theophany); *Jabarut*
(= the realm of the `Divine Decrees/spiritual powers'); *Malakut*  (= the
Heavenly Kingdom or realm of the angels) and *Nasut*  (= the realm of
creation) (see trans. III:10ff)

Having set down these esoteric meanings of "food" (ta`am)
Baha'u'llah>laments his sad plight, alludes to the faith status of Mirza
Kamal al-Din>(drawing on Q. 18:17-18) and expresses his intention to
expound Qur'an 3:87
still further. He explains that "food" also signifies the "essence of
knowledge" (nafs al- `ilm)  or all branches of learning; "Israel" the
"Primal Point" (nuqtat al-ula; the Bab)  and the "children of Israel" one
whom God made a "Proof" (hujjat)  for the people "in these days" (=
Yahya/Baha'u'llah?).
The phrase "except what Israel made unlawful for itself" refers to that
which the Bab made unlawful "for his elevated ones and his servants" (the
Babis). Most probably countering the antinomian tendencies of a Babi
faction -- who may have cited Qur'an 3:87 in support of their antimonian
stance -- the need to follow  the Babi law is underlined (III:9f)

"..[9] Let not the actions of those who have been spreading wickedness in
the land veil you [Mirza Kamal al-Din]. They suppose that they are rightly
guided.[10] Nay! By the Lord of the Realm of the Divine Cloud ! They are
liars and calumniators. [11] The nature of that party is such that they
should never be allowed to eat even barley in these days. [12] How then,
can they possibly be allowed to eat what God hath forbidden in the Book? So
praised be He, praised be He above that which the associators [polytheists]
assert."

Having thus explained, Baha'u'llah, in the light of Mirza Kamal al-Din's
having been "irradiated through the orient light of the splendours of the
Morn of Eternity" (subh al-azal= `turned to Mirza Yayha  as the head of
the exiled Babi  community?), identifies "food" (ta`am)  with the "bearer
of the Cause" (sahib al-amr  = Mirza  Yahya/ Baha'u'llah?). "Israel" in
this connection signifies the "primal will" (al-mashiyyat al-ula/
awwaliyya?) by means of which God created everything, while the "children
of Israel" are those who attained faith in the Bab from the "year sixty" (=
1260/1844) and thereafter those who have and will come to believe in him
untilthe Divine Theophany at the eschatological consummation (for Baha'is =
Baha'u'llah/the Baha'i Faith).

Still further interpretations of the key terms in Qur'an 3:87 are
given towards the end of the *Lawh kull al-ta`am.  At one point Baha'u'llah
explains this verse in the light of the Islamic dispensation -- calling to
mind the Bab's earlier explanations of "Israel" and the "children of
Israel" in his *Tafsir Surat al-Baqara* ("Commentary on the Sura of the
Cow" = Qur'an II)

[VIII]

"[1] O Thou Faithful One! If you be of those who dwell in the
Snow-White Forest, the Isle of the Criterion (al-Furqan= the Qur'an),
then>know that "food" signifieth the [personified] Custodianship
(al-wilaya)
which God decreed for His people. [2] The intention of "Israel" in this
connection is the Point of the Criterion (al-Furqan = the Qur'an) and of
the "children of Israel" His trustees [= the Imams] who succeeded Him
[Muhammad] and by means of Whom God recompenseth His righteous servants."

He then explains that for those who "dwell in the "Crimson Isle"
(jazirat al-hamra), the "Orchard of the Bayan" (hadiqat al-bayan;  i.e. the
Babis) the "food" (ta`am)  of the Islamic *wilaya* (see above) is abandoned
and the "Primal Point" or Bab is desired. For Babis, in other words, the
Islamic dispensation has been abrogated. "Israel" furthermore signifies the
"Last Objective" (wijhat al-ukhra), the "Mystery of Endless Duration"
(sirr>al-samadaniya)  [allusions to Quddus?) and the "Countenance of Light"
(tal`at al-nur), the "Disengaged  [Isolated] Theophany" (mujarrad
al-zuhur), the "Temple of the Divine Unicity" (haykal al-ahadiyya)  whom
the aggressors caused to be "imprisoned in the land" and "concealed in the
cities" (allusions to Mirza Yahya?).

Finally Baha'u'llah identifies the "food" (ta`am)  mentioned in Qur'an
3:87 with "the Ocean of the Unseen (bahr al-ghayb)  which is hidden in the
"Scrolls of Light" (saha'if al-nur) and treasured up in the Inscribed
Tablets (alwah  al-mastur)  perhaps meaning Babi sacred writings. "Israel"
signifies the "Manifestation of the Command" (mazhar al-amr  = Mirza
Yahya?) and the "children of Iarael" the "people of the Bayan" (ahl
al-bayan  =the Babis) for whom the "food" (ta`am)  of the Babi revelation
is permitted -- if they are sincere Babis who derive spiritual sustenance
from the true

* * * * * * * * *

PS. These brief and incomplete notes are not a full introduction
or>commentary upon all the intricate historical and other aspects of the
*Lawh-i kull al-ta`am* . For details see the forthcoming revised
printing>of BSB 3:1 (originally June 1984), 4-67.

PPS. Quddus appears to be alluded to at various points in the *Lawh-i kull
al-ta`am* .  At VI:15f  he is explicitly mentioned in highly exalted terms
-- it is evident that he and Baha'u'llah were very, very close.

"[15]  So Ah! Alas! If the Last Point, the Countenance of My Love,
Quddus were alive he would assuredly weep over my plight and would lament
that which hath befallen me. [16] And I, for My part, would at this moment
beseech his eminence and supplicate his holiness that he would enable Me
to>ascend unto the court of His might and recline on the cushion of his
sanctity as I was wont to do in those days [now past] when I was free of
the aforementioned misfortunes. [17] O Lord! Cast patience upon Me and make
Me to be victorious over the transgressors."

PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION TO FOLLOW IN TWO PARTS  WITH A FEW VERSIFICATION -
NOT IN THE ORIGINAL- ERRORS CORRECTED.

Stephen N. Lambden
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 2PQ
England. U.K.

Voice/Fax. +44 [0] 191. 2818597
Email S.N.Lambden@ncl.ac.uk

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 10:41:26 -0600 (CST)
Subject: re: no subject
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: , "Talisman"

>  I
>think this will require that we not make dichotomies betwen "old orders" and
>"new orders" , much of the new order is pretty old stuff .

Dear brother Terry,

I believe you are continuing the dichotemy by such a remark.

What I believe is being said is there is a "THIRD" entity afoot.  However
much it owes to the previous systems of Monarchy, Democracy,
Republicanism, despotism, liberalism and so forth is beside the point--it
is real.  It is an organism. It operates on many planes of existence.
And its appearance on this plane has taken place, although, it is in the
fetal stage.  This I believe is why there is so much caution on the part
of the believership concerning the appropriateness of individual behavior
towards it, and the loving care that must be shown.  It must be protected
at this stage, and we need not be frightened or discouraged--the Divine
Physician is in attendance believe it or not.

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Mon, 12 Feb 96 03:38 PST
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Megha Shyam
Subject: Jesus at 2000 Conference

Dear talisman friends:

The Jesus at 2000 conference concluded in Corvallis on
Saturday and was a smashing success.  Despite the fact
that Corvallis was completely isolated by Road on Friday
because of flood, (the road to Eugene was under 3 feet of
water ) there were nearly 650 people for the conference
opening on Friday.  On Saturday however the conference
had nearly full attendance.  They increased the number
15-20,000 people participated.   The conference format
was excellent and something that ABS should consider
incorporating - a talk for 45 minutes followed by rigorous
questions from the audience as well as call ins followed
by a 15-20 minute break allowed much dialog on site as
well those wathcing the links.  It was a very impressive
program.  We taped the following talks -

1.  From Galilean Jew to the Face of God: The Pre-Easter and
Post-Easter Jesus, Prof. Marcus Borg of Oregon State
University

I've not had a chance to watch this yet.

2.  Jesus and Kingdom: Peasants and Scribes in Earliest Christianity
by Professor John Dominic Crossan of Depaul University

Most impressive; many social issues brought up along with nature
of spirituality.

3.  Jesus, Judisam and Early Christianity by Prof. Alan Segal of
Bernard College  and Columbia University

I'm yet to watch this.

4.  .You are the Christ! Second Century Views of Jesus by Prof.
Karen Jo Torjesen of Claremont Colleges in California

She had intersting tie-ins on gender issues

5. Jesus and Generation X by Prof. Harvey Cox of Harvard Divinity
School

Most impressive - a lot for us learn from his thesis on issues of
interst and concern to generation X; many points touched upon.
Over the next week or so, I will try to highlight a few.

6.  Jesus and World's Religions by Prof. Houston Smith of
Syracuse University and UC Berkeley in California

Eloquent as usual; someone asked him what he thought of the
Baha'i Faith.  His response strongly suggests that he had
little or no information on Baha'ullah's commentary on Christ.

7.  Concluding Panel - topic What do you find most striking
(or appealing, challeging or disturbing) about Jesus?

Very intriguing.

My overall impression - with little or no background in Christianity,
what intrigued me was the way these scholars combined various
points of views and developed a wonderful mosiac.  Something we

More later

Thanks

Megha Shyam
meghas@sparcom.com

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 10:24:37 -0600 (CST)
Subject: re: no subject
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: , "Talisman"

My spirit brother Terry writes:

>  I must say I agree that social units have a reality . At least in some
>metaphysical sense I find the House of Worship both a social reality and an
>individual reality- embedded within the human soul- its reality,  and yet in
>eternity a reality which included yet transcends its social presence and its
>appearance within the soul .
I have mentioned quite vaguely that "I would argue neither", in earlier
posts that I have written.  This is very difficult to discuss clearly and
within the confines of a "Post".   Many take the tactic of asking one to
read a particular book but I'm going to try to avoid that.  I will first
give my understanding of what my brother is saying and then attempt
express my view.

I.

There is a tradition in western philosophy of the "subject" being the
only reality, that is the individual.  Bishop Berkeley, a brilliant
Irishman, who later became famous during his time for his advocacy of
coal tar as a curative panacea advanced the most radical version of this
position confining reality solely to the perceptions of the subject.
Hume, the illustrious Scott took things a step further and argued against
the very existence of "Cause and Effect".

II.

The "Realists"  Socrates and Plato argued that reality is a
manifestation of higher forms.  Thus one could argue, as Terry does, that
the Family is real and the House of Worship is real etc as the
"Idealists" MIGHT, within the context of individual perception (THE
SOUL).  Kant, in his answer to Hume, taught that the reality of a thing
is not known in itself, but rather perceived directly--thus the object is
not discarded--it is simply not perceivable in and of itself.
Baha'u'llah says something along the same lines IN A HIGHER MANNER, in my
estimate, when he emphasizes the heart as another actual faculty along
with the senses that allows for direct perception in the
spirit/mind/intellectual realm as the senses do in the physical sphere.

III.

The problem as I see it is in the methodology of arguing either positive
or negative when it is "neither" one or the other but rather a PROCESS in
the final analysis, and the individual is a participant in the organism.
IMHO, Baha'u'llah has taught that all reality, outside of God,  is
"contingent".  Thus this "relativity" applies in one degree or another to
the existence of the "individual" as well as "social units".  If a social
unit  or social construct has the sanctity of ordination by God then it
has the full weight of His reality behind it.  I can only imagine the
consternation I must be creating now by what I am about to say but I
believe one should NOT over-estimate the SIGNIFICANCE of individual human
reality.  It is inescapable and indeed desirable--a crowning quality of
existence, but its true merit IMHO, as Baha'u'llah written, is found in
"The Valley of True Poverty and Absolute Nothingness".

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Mon, 12 Feb 96 21:23:21+030
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: dpeden@imul.com (Don Peden)
Subject: unsubscribe

unsubscribe talisman dpeden@imul.com

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 18:56:42 +0000
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: S.N.Lambden@newcastle.ac.uk (Stephen Lambden)
Subject: *Lawh-i kull al-ta`am* TB 2A:01 (Pt.1)

Beloved Talismanians,

What follows is my slightly revised prov. trans. of the *Lawh-i
kull al-ta`am* ("Tablet of All Food"; c. 1854 CE) of Baha'u'llah. It first
appeared with commentary in BSB 3:1 (June 1984), pp.4-67. Various texts
were consulted though I mostly followed the superior ms in INBA 36:268-277.
The texts printed in Ishraq Khavari's *Ma'ida-yi Asmani* (4:265-276) and
*Rahiq-i makhtum* (2:416-426) contain quite a few textual errors. No
critical edition exists. The Provisional translation which follows remains
style would be greatly appreciated.
Love and salutations,

Steve

THE LAWH-I KULL AL-TA`AM: PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION.
_________________________________________________

[0]

He is Supremely Powerful in accomplishing that which He willeth
through a command on His part.  And He is God,  Powerful over all things.

[I]

[1]  Praise be to God Who hath caused Oceans of Light to surge in the
Divine Fiery Water; excited the Letters of the Dispensation (huruf
al-zuhur) in the Incomparable, Beclouded Point and made the Hidden Mount to
revolve about the Firmament of the Theophany, the Concealed Self, the Focal
Centre of Eternality. [2] He caused the Lordly Point to circle round the
Most-Splendid, All-Enduring Ornament to the end that all might testify that
He is the True One; no God is there save Him. [3] He, verily, is the
Incomparable, the One, the Eternal, Who neither begetteth nor is begotten.
He can never be likened to any single thing. And He, God, is the Majestic,
the All-Compelling.

[4] Praise be to God Who hath caused the Fiery Depths to overflow
from the Purified, Sanctified Temple and made the Beauteous Deep to
sprinkle forth refined, glorious Dewdrops. [5] He hath attracted the
Countenances characterised by the letter "H" (al-ha')  through the unique,
eternal melodies and enabled the Light-filled Dove to sing forth with
warblings timeless and everlasting. [6] This, to the end, that all might
become aware that He is the True One; there is none other God besides Him,
the Beneficent, the Almighty Who cannot be described by aught save His
Essence or characterised by aught save His Eminence. He, verily, is the
All-Powerful, the Wrathful.

[7] Praise be to God Who hath caused the Light to circle round the
twin Mounts of His Light and made the Light to revolve around the twin
Spheres of His Light. [8] He hath caused the Light to beam forth in the
Loci of His Light and made the Light to be retained in the Repositories of
His Light. [9] He hath also caused the Light to scintillate through the
impulses of His Light and made the Light to shine resplendent in the
Countenances of His Light.[10] Praise God! Praised be God! Worthy of praise
is He Who establisheth His Own worth, for besides Him there is none other.

[II]

[1] So praised be Thou, O My God, O My God! Bereft of splendour am
I, until invoke Thee through Thy sanctified verses. No glory have I until I
confide in Thee through Thine intimate Letters. [2] Without radiance am I
until I experience Thee through the secrets of Thy Might. [3] And no lustre
have I until I observe Thee in the hidden retreats of Thy Light.

[4] So praised be Thou, O My God, O My God! We failed to invoke
Thee at the moment which Thou madest Me one saddened before the surging of
the Deep Sea of Thy blissfulness and made Me one grieved in the land nigh
unto the billowing of the Fathomless Deep of Thy Joyousness. [5] Likewise
at the moment which, in Thy House, Thou madest Me one afflicted before the
high courses of the Oceans of Thy Radiance.

[6]  So praised be Thou, O My God, O My God! We failed to
adequately bear witness unto Thee in that Thou hast testified before all
things unto Thine Own Self, through Thine Own Self, for Thou, verily, art
God, no God is there except Thee. [7] Eternally Thou hast rested upon the
Throne of Glory and hath
everlastingly been concealed by the essence of Bounty and Justice. [8]
Eternally and everlastingly Thou wast hidden in the Image Thou hadst
aforetime in the magnificence of Glory and Beauty. [9] Not a single person
is capable of fathoming the fullness of Thine Interiority and no soul is
able to describe the substance of Thine Identity. [10] Whenever the holy
ones attempt to become acquainted with Thee, they subscribe to falsity in
the holy court of the King of Thy Munificence. [11] And, as often as those
who confess Thy Unity attempt to characterise Thee, they join partners with
Thee at the intimate threshold
of the Sovereign of Thy Might.

[12]  So praised be Thou, O My God, O My God! Thou art the One who
created Me free of affliction in Thy dominions and provided for Me in such
wise that not an atom of misfortune befell me in Thy regions. [13] Such was
the case, until Thou enabled Me to recognise Thy Remembrance and inspired
Me as One acknowledging the truth for Thy sake; One obedient to His command
as befits Thy Truth. [14] Thou art the One Who deposited in Mine inmost
essence, a Lamp from Thy Being, by means of which Thy Self might become
known. [15] It beamed forth in Thy Kingdom and I found a haven in the court
of Thy Might until oceans of sadness surged over Me -- a mere drop of which
no soul could bear to drink.  [16]I wept to such an extent that the spirit
well-nigh departed from My body. [17] I was so filled with anxiety that the
Spiritual Beings were sorely troubled. I was overcome with sorrow so as to
grievously distress the Luminous Ones. [18] And praise be to Thee, O My
Beloved, on account of all that Thou madest to appear through Thy Power,
ordained through Thy Will, decreed through Thy Judgement, and determined
through Thy power of Accomplishment, for all these things are a proof of
Thy Cause and a path unto the Sovereign of Thy Graciousness.

[19] So praise be to Thee, O My God, O My God! How can I call upon
Thee through the wonders of Thy Remembrance when the Path to the gnosis of
the boundary of Thine Essence is cut off? [20] And how can I not call upon
Thee, in that Thou didst not create Me except for the remembrance of Thy
benefits and the commemoration of Thy favours. So praise be unto Thee! [21]
I, verily, stand before Thee unto Whom all bow down in adoration.

[22]  So praise be to Thee, O My God, O My God! We failed to
entreat Thee on those darkest of nights on which the Dove of the Command
sang out on Mount Sinai, from the right side of the Crimson Tree, with the
melodies of Thine Eternity; [23] or, during those lengthy periods of gloom,
when the Light-filled Bird warbled beyond the veils of the realm of
concealed Divinity with the warblings of Thy Perpetuity. [24] This inasmuch
as Thou raised Me up unto the Heaven of the Unseen through the supremacy of
the Sovereign of Thine Endless Permanency; [25] made Me to ascend unto the
Horizon of Evident Attestation through the power of the King of Thy
Divinity; [26] caused Me to be elevated unto the hidden retreats of Thy
Oneness and ennobled Me through the meeting with Thy Countenance such that
I came to abide in Thy sanctuary and found a haven in Thine Expanse. [27] I
reclined upon cushions of Light through Thy bounty and rose up above the
Heaven of Manifestation through Thy Munificence. [28] Thereby did My heart
find peace, My soul comfort, My being delight and My essence equanimity,
for thereby was I numbered among those who are assured through the meeting
with their Lord.

[III]

[1]  O thou glorious enquirer who art set aglow through the Fire of
the Friend! [2] Be thou assured that from the very first day that God aided
Me through faith in Him and confirmation in His Cause, it was not my desire
to respond to the enquiries of any among the servants. [3] But since I
found in thy heart a fire from the Proof of God and a brand from the Light
of the Manifestation of His Self, the ocean of My affection hath surged and
it is My wish to reply to thee through the power and might of God. [4] My
munificence overfloweth with the sprinklings of servitude in the Land of
the Theophany, in order that the breezes of Light might attract thee unto
the summit of exhilaration, and cause thee to attain that station which God
hath decreed for thee in these days in which the winds of sorrow have
encompassed Me on all sides. [5] This on account of that which the hands of
the people have committed
for they have calumniated me without proof or written testimony.[6] O Lord!
Cast patience upon Me and make Me to be victorious over the seditious
people.

[7] Then know that for this paradisiacal verse [Q.3:87], this
choice fruit, divine song and heavenly pearl, are subtle meanings endless
in their infinitude. [8] I, by the grace and bounty of God, shall sprinkle
upon thee something of the superabundance of its meanings that may serve as
a memorial for the believers, a guiding light for the estranged, and a
stronghold for the agitated. [9] Then bear thou witness that for "food" are
diverse levels of meaning; it must suffice thee, however, that We expound
four of them.

[10] It signifieth the realm of the Throne of He-ness (Hahut), the
Paradise of the Divine Oneness. [11] None is capable of expounding even a
letter of that verse relative to that Paradise. [12] This inasmuch as that
realm is that of the Mystery of Endless Duration, the Unique Sonship, the
Incomparable Israelicity and the Resplendent Selfhood. [13] Its exoteric
aspect is the essence of its esoteric aspect and its esoteric aspect the
essence of its exoteric aspect. [14] It is inappropriate that anyone should
attempt to elucidate a single letter of it. [15] God, however, will
disclose its mysteries when He willeth unto whomsoever He willeth.[16] And
I, verily, in view of My injury and My misery am not informed of even a
letter thereof. [17] This inasmuch  as the matter cannot be related except
on the part of God, its Fashioner and its Originator.

[18] So praise be unto God, its Creator and its Lifegiver above
that which those who confess the Unity of God assert.[19]  By He in Whose
hand is My Soul! If oceans of Light should surge forth in that realm all
who are in the heavens and on earth would assuredly be drowned; save, that
is, a number of the
Letters of this Dispensation (`Theophany'). [20] In this respect God
beareth sufficient witness as regards both Me and thee.

[21] It signifieth the realm of the Paradise of Endless Duration,
the Throne of the Divine Realm (Lahut), the Snow-White Light. [22] It is
the realm of "He is He Himself" and there is none other save Him. [23] This
Paradise is allotted unto those servants who are established upon the Seat
of Glory, who quaff liquid camphor nigh unto the All-Beauteous One, and who
recite the verses of Light in the Heaven of Manifest Justice. [24] Thereby
are they enraptured and from that "food" derive comfort.

[25]  It signifieth the Paradise of the Divine Unicity, the Golden
[Yellow] Land, the Depths of realm of the Divine Omnipotence (Jabarut).
[26] It is the realm of "Thou art He [God] and He [God] is Thou" allotted
unto those servants who do not cried out except with the permission of God;
who act according to His command and ever restrain themselves in accordance
with His wisdom [27] -- just as God hath described them [in the Qur'an] for
they are the honoured servants of whom it is written: "They speak not till
He hath spoken; and they do His bidding" (21:27).

[28] It signifieth the Paradise of Justice, the Verdent [Green]
Land, the Fathomless Deep of Kingdom of God (Malakut)  allotted to those
servants whom  "neither traffic nor merchandise beguile from the
remembrance of God" (Qur'an 24:27) since they are the companions of the
Light. [29] They enter therein
with the permission of God and find rest upon the carpet of the Almighty.

[30] It signifieth the realm of the Paradise of the Divine Bounty,
the Crimson Land, the Golden Secret, the Snow-White Mystery and the Point
of the human realm (Nasut). [31] In it are the proofs of the Remembrance
greatest, if you are of those who are informed.

IV

[1] Ah! Alas! Then Ah! Alas! If the Primal Point [the Bab] were
alive in these days and witnessed My grief he would assuredly, at all
times, comfort Me, treat Me tenderly, and fill Me with ardent joy. At every
moment would he strengthen Me. [2] So Ah! Alas! Would that I had died after
him, before these days, or were one quite forgotten, consigned to oblivion.

[3] Say: O Thou Concourse! Comfort me! Do not calumniate Me or
hasten My affair for I am a servant who hath believed in God and in His
signs [or verses], and there doth not remain of My days except a few.[4]
God, My Lord, is sufficient protector against you since he sufficeth Me and
sufficeth he whom
he desired aforetime. [5] Sufficient is the careful account of His own
Self. [6] Lord! Pour out patience upon Me and make Me victorious over the
disbelieving peoples who do not cry out except in accordance with their own
delusions or move except as their idle fancies prompt them. [7] Say: It is
why it is this way for you neither comprehend nor understand.

[V]

[1] O Thou Faithful One! When the breezes of love spilled over from
the right-side of the Sinaitic Tree you were turned to the right and to the
left; [2] in that place, in the Cave of Light, you were protected with the
permission of God, the Exalted, for He is God, Powerful over all things.
[3] And you acknowledged and understood all that We expounded for you. Then
bear witness that We desire to expound further.

[4] Then know that the significance of "food" is the essence of
knowledge; that is, all branches of learning. [5] "Israel" signifieth the
Primal Point and the "children of Israel" He whom God, on His part, made a
Proof unto the people in these days. [6] "Except what Israel made unlawful
for itself [or himself]" ; that is, that which the Primal Point made
unlawful for his elevated ones and his servants.

[7] Then bear witness that all that God decreed in the Book through
His command and His power of interdiction is the truth about which there is
no doubt. [8] It is incumbent upon all to act in conformity therewith and
to assent thereto. [9] Let not the actions of those who have been spreading
wickedness in
the land veil you. They suppose that they are rightly guided.[10] Nay! By
the Lord of the Realm of the Divine Cloud ! They are liars and
calumniators. [11] The nature of that party is such that they should never
be allowed to eat even barley in these days. [12] How then, can they
possibly be allowed to eat what God hath forbidden in the Book? So praised
be He, praised be He above that which the associators assert.

* * * * * * * * *

PART TWO TO FOLLOW

Stephen N. Lambden
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 2PQ
England. U.K.

Voice/Fax. +44 [0] 191. 2818597
Email S.N.Lambden@ncl.ac.uk

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 12:18:58 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: frlw@midway.uchicago.edu, Masumian@mail.utexas.edu,
Noorbakhsh.Monzavi@hibo.no
Subject: Reuters 2/11/96 (fwd)

>    'IRAN' STORIES
>Transmission date: 96/02/11
>  1. 06:49 IRAN MARKS REVOLUTION, PLEDGES TO STAY ON COURSE
>  2. 06:47 IRAN MARKS REVOLUTION, PLEDGES TO STAY ON COURSE
>  3. 04:33 PRESS DIGEST - LONDON-BASED ARAB NEWSPAPERS - FEB 11
>  4. 02:17 TENNIS-THAILAND BEAT IRAN 4-1 IN DAVIS CUP
>Transmission date: 96/02/10
>  5. 15:09 IRAN FREES SOME JAILED DEBTORS TO MARK REVOLUTION
>
>=START=   XMT: 06:49 Sun Feb 11  EXP: 6 :00 Wed Feb 14
>
>
> Iran marks revolution, pledges to stay on course
>    By Sharif Imam-Jomeh
>    TEHRAN, Feb 11 (Reuter) - Iranians took to the streets on Sunday to
>celebrate the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic revolution against the Shah and
>re-affirm allegiance to the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's strict
>guidelines.
>    Tens of thousands marched from five points in Tehran to rally at the city's
>Azadi (Freedom) Square, waving flags and bearing portraits of Khomeini and his
>successor, spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
>    About 100,000 thronged in the square and official media said millions
>attended similar rallies throughout the country. Witnesses said security
>appeared tighter than in previous years.
>    Visiting American Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan, main foreign guest
>at the Tehran rally, hailed the revolution and said: ``Iran is now in the
>vanguard of an Islamic revolution that is sweeping the earth.
>    ``You must not despair because it appears that enemies are all around this
>marvellous revolution. You must not get weak or weary in your vanguard
>position,'' the self-styled leader of the Nation of Islam said.
>    Farrakhan, who arrived in Tehran on Saturday, described himself as ``your
>Moslem brother from the United States of America.'' His speech in English was
>loudspeakers to people in the streets.
>    Holding a copy of the Koran, Farrakhan ended his 35-minute speech by
>chanting Allahu Akbar (God is Greatest), a refrain picked up by the crowd who
>also chanted: ``To the anguish of America, our movement has spread across the
>world.''
>    As President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani arrived, Farrakhan left the stage,
>walked to the Iranian leader's car and embraced him.
>    Rafsanjani said Moslems worldwide supported the Iranian revolution and
>added: ``Today you witnessed one from a country known for its enmity against
>Islam.''
>    Calling Farrakhan ``a speaker for more than 30 million oppressed black
>Americans,'' Rafsanjani said, ``Everybody understands that our confrontation is
>with the government and not the people of America.
>    ``It is the justice-seeking message of Islam that attracts people
>everywhere. We do not care if that is called exporting revolution.''
>    Rafsanjani said the Iranian people still regarded the United States as
>``the Great Satan,'' and said: ``As long as America, by adopting unreasonable
>and blatantly disgraceful policies..., (is) not showing the least sign of
>goodwill...the Iranian people will continue chanting 'Death to America'.''
>    The crowd pledged continued allegiance to the revolution by approving a
>10-point resolution read at the end of the rally.
>    It re-affirmed that Khomeini was the architect of the revolution and his
>guidelines would always be followed. It also confirmed obedience to Khamenei as
>a religious duty.
>    The resolution also praised Rafsanjani and expressed support for the
>government's development projects.
>    One point called on officials to work towards social justice, eradicate
>poverty, and firmly deal with corruption which it said caused social
>discontent.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 06:47 Sun Feb 11  EXP: 6 :00 Wed Feb 14
>
>
> Iran marks revolution, pledges to stay on course
>    By Sharif Imam-Jomeh
>    TEHRAN, Feb 11 (Reuter) - Iranians took to the streets on Sunday to
>celebrate the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic revolution against the Shah and
>re-affirm allegiance to the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's strict
>guidelines.
>    Tens of thousands marched from five points in Tehran to rally at the city's
>Azadi (Freedom) Square, waving flags and bearing portraits of Khomeini and his
>successor, spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
>    About 100,000 thronged in the square and official media said millions
>attended similar rallies throughout the country. Witnesses said security
>appeared tighter than in previous years.
>    Visiting American Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan, main foreign guest
>at the Tehran rally, hailed the revolution and said: ``Iran is now in the
>vanguard of an Islamic revolution that is sweeping the earth.
>    ``You must not despair because it appears that enemies are all around this
>marvellous revolution. You must not get weak or weary in your vanguard
>position,'' the self-styled leader of the Nation of Islam said.
>    Farrakhan, who arrived in Tehran on Saturday, described himself as ``your
>Moslem brother from the United States of America.'' His speech in English was
>loudspeakers to people in the streets.
>    Holding a copy of the Koran, Farrakhan ended his 35-minute speech by
>chanting Allahu Akbar (God is Greatest), a refrain picked up by the crowd who
>also chanted: ``To the anguish of America, our movement has spread across the
>world.''
>    As President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani arrived, Farrakhan left the stage,
>walked to the Iranian leader's car and embraced him.
>    Rafsanjani said Moslems worldwide supported the Iranian revolution and
>added: ``Today you witnessed one from a country known for its enmity against
>Islam.''
>    Calling Farrakhan ``a speaker for more than 30 million oppressed black
>Americans,'' Rafsanjani said, ``Everybody understands that our confrontation is
>with the government and not the people of America.
>    ``It is the justice-seeking message of Islam that attracts people
>everywhere. We do not care if that is called exporting revolution.''
>    Rafsanjani said the Iranian people still regarded the United States as
>``the Great Satan,'' and said: ``As long as America, by adopting unreasonable
>and blatantly disgraceful policies..., (is) not showing the least sign of
>goodwill...the Iranian people will continue chanting 'Death to America'.''
>    The crowd pledged continued allegiance to the revolution by approving a
>10-point resolution read at the end of the rally.
>    It re-affirmed that Khomeini was the architect of the revolution and his
>guidelines would always be followed. It also confirmed obedience to Khamenei as
>a religious duty.
>    The resolution also praised Rafsanjani and expressed support for the
>government's development projects.
>    One point called on officials to work towards social justice, eradicate
>poverty, and firmly deal with corruption which it said caused social
>discontent.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 04:33 Sun Feb 11  EXP: 4 :00 Wed Feb 14
>
>
> PRESS DIGEST - London-based Arab newspapers - Feb 11
>    LONDON, Feb 11 (Reuter) - These are the leading stories in two London-based
>Arabic-language newspapers on Sunday. Reuters has not verified these stories
>and does not vouch for their accuracy.
>    ASHARQ AL-AWSAT
>    - Four U.S. steps to confront Iraq, Iran danger.
>    - King Fahd to spend last ten days of Ramadan in Mecca.
>    - Abu Dhabi plans to build a new seaport.
>    - Iraqi dinar falls to 700 to the dollar.
>    AL-HAYAT
>    - U.S. increases military presence to confront Iraq, Iran.
>    - King Hussein (of Jordan) arrives in Jeddah on Sunday.
>    - Iraqi team in Damascus to coordiante water policy.
>    - London blast may weaken sterling, stocks.
>  REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 02:17 Sun Feb 11  EXP: 2 :00 Wed Feb 14
>
>
> Tennis-Thailand beat Iran 4-1 in Davis Cup
>    BANGKOK, Feb 11 (Reuter) - Thailand beat Iran 4-1 in their Davis Cup
>Asia-Oceania zone group two, first round tie on Sunday.
>    Reverse singles:
>    Mansour Bahrami (Iran) beat Thanakorn Srichaphan (Thailand) 6-4 6-2
>    Voraphol Thongkamchoo (Thailand) beat Ramin Raziyani (Iran) 7-5 6-4
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 15:09 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 5 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> Iran frees some jailed debtors to mark revolution
>    TEHRAN, Feb 10 (Reuter) - Iran has pardoned people jailed for inability to
>pay fines of up to about \$3,300 to mark the 17th anniversary of its Islamic
>revolution, Tehran radio said on Saturday.
>    It said Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei issued the pardon for
>those held for owing fines of up to 10 million rials (\$3,333 at the official
>exchange rate) on condition that there were no civil suits pending against
>them.
>    Beneficiaries of the pardon included prisoners convicted by Islamic,
>ordinary and military courts, the radio said. It did not say how many people
>were affected by the order.
>    On Wednesday, Iran announced an amnesty for people convicted on illegal
>weapons charges and granted a six-months grace period for others to turn in
>unlicensed arms to mark the anniversary of the February 11, 1979 revolution
>which brought the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini to power.
>
>=END=
>
>
>

=END=

To: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 'New' vs 'Old' World Order
Date: 12 Feb 1996 09:48:46 GMT

> this will require that we not make dichotomies betwen "old orders" and
> "new orders" , much of the new order is pretty old stuff .

Terry -
I think this is a good point and I'll be interested in your comments on this.

One of the basic questions that does not seem to be discussed directly, and
one which I think underlies much of the differences of opinion on talisman,
is what is the fundamental difference(s) between the New and Old World
Orders?

It seems to me that one of the differences is that the old world order is
based on an organizational structure while the new world order is based on an
ethical structure.  In the old world order, the focus is maintaining some
organizational structure while allowing a diversity of ethical structures; in
the new world order the emphasis will be on a shared ethical structure, based
on the spiritual principles in the Writings, while permitting some variety in
organizational structures.

Iv view of the general attitudes that have developed at least since the
Renaissance, it seems to me that this alone is a major paradigm shift.

Don C

He who believes himself spiritual proves he is not - The Cloud of Unknowing

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 12:16:37 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: frlw@midway.uchicago.edu, Masumian@mail.utexas.edu,
Noorbakhsh.Monzavi@hibo.no
Subject: Reuters 2/10/96 (fwd)

>    'IRAN' STORIES
>Transmission date: 96/02/10
>  1. 13:32 REUTERS MIDDLE EAST HIGHLIGHTS
>  2. 13:18 U.S. BLACK MUSLIM LEADER FARRAKHAN VISITS IRAN
>  3. 10:16 IRAN TELLS U.N. ENVOY HUMAN RIGHTS WESTERN TOOL
>  4. 06:57 U.N. HUMAN RIGHTS ENVOY HOLDS TALKS IN IRAN
>  5. 06:32 REUTERS MIDDLE EAST HIGHLIGHTS
>  6. 06:22 TREMOR SHAKES SOUTHEASTERN IRAN
>  7. 03:38 TENNIS-THAILAND LEAD IRAN 3-0 IN DAVIS CUP TIE
>  8. 00:36 REUTERS MIDDLE EAST HIGHLIGHTS
>Transmission date: 96/02/09
>  9. 21:26 U.S. TO INCREASE MIDEAST DEFENSE PRESENCE-PERRY
>
>=START=   XMT: 13:32 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 3 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> Reuters Middle East Highlights
>    TEHRAN - American Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan arrived in Tehran and
>called on the United States to use its money to help homeless Americans instead
>of funding plots against Iran, Tehran radio said.
>    - - - -
>    BAGHDAD - Iraq blamed speculators, traders and hostile news media for a
>sudden slump in the value of its dinar currency against the U.S. dollar
>following spectacular gains in the past few weeks. The dollar was trading at
>about 700 dinars, up from 500 early this week.
>    - - - -
>    GAZA - A Palestinian man suspected by members of the militant group Hamas
>of informing on them to Israel was shot dead in the Gaza Strip Palestinian
>self-rule enclave, witnesses said.
>    - - - -
>    GAZA - Palestinian President Yasser Arafat has agreed to investigate the
>killing of two Islamic Jihad activists by his security forces a week ago, an
>    - - - -
>    TEHRAN - A senior Iranian official told a visiting United Nations human
>rights envoy that human rights issues were being used by Western countries to
>    - - - -
>    PARIS - Algeria delivered a sharp protest to Sweden, saying it had allowed
>a Moslem militant ``terrorist'' to use its territory as a political platform,
>an Algerian foreign ministry statement said.
>    - - - -
>    BEIRUT - The pro-Iranian Hizbollah said its guerrillas set off a roadside
>bomb near a pro-Israeli patrol in south Lebanon, wounding a militiaman.
>    - - - -
>    BEIRUT - Lebanon's Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri will visit the Vatican
>next week to discuss with Pope John Paul II the Israeli occupation to parts of
>south Lebanon, Beirut newspapers reported.
>    - - - -
>    NICOSIA - A bomb exploded outside a Kurdish cultural centre in the Cypriot
>city of Limassol, smashing windows of several buildings, police said.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 13:18 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 3 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> U.S. Black Muslim leader Farrakhan visits Iran
>    TEHRAN, Feb 10 (Reuter) - American Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan
>arrived in Tehran on Saturday and called on the United States to use its money
>to help homeless Americans instead of funding plots against Iran, Tehran radio
>said.
>    ``It is a great honour for me...to get to know the only government in the
>world that is run according to God's laws,'' said the controversial Nation of
>    ``Instead of allotting a budget to plot against the Islamic state in Iran,
>America ought to allocate this fund to the homeless in the United States,''
>Farrakhan said in reference to reported moves in the U.S. Congress to set up a
>covert action fund against Iran.
>    ``America cannot hurt the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, which
>is seeking to establish the rule of God on earth, with a \$20 million budget,''
>he said.
>    Farrakhan said he would attend ceremonies marking the anniversary of Iran's
>1979 Islamic revolution on Sunday.
>    Farrakhan, criticised in the past for his attacks on whites and Jews,
>arrived in Tehran after touring several African countries.
>    Ettelaat newspapers said he was welcomed by unnamed Iranian officials at
>    He will also visit the holy cities of Qom and Mashhad and meet Foreign
>Minister Ali Akbar Velayati and top Iranian Shi'ite Moslem clerics during his
>three-day visit, newspapers said.
>    Iran praised the ``Million Man March'' led by Farrakhan in Washington in
>October, saying it showed the Islamic revolution of the late Ayatollah Ruhollah
>Khomeini was spreading to the United States.
>    The Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said the rally was ``a
>slap in the face of America's government by Islam.''
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 10:16 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 0 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> Iran tells U.N. envoy human rights Western tool
>    (Updates with meeting with Iran official, Previous NICOSIA)
>    TEHRAN, Feb 10 (Reuter) - A senior Iranian official on Saturday told a
>visiting United Nations human rights envoy that human rights issues were being
>used by Western countries to pressurise Iran, Tehran radio said.
>    ``Numerous factors have led the Iranian people to not be optimistic about
>this (U.N. Human Rights) Commission's work, as human rights have gradually
>become a tool of great powers to put pressure on specific countries,'' Deputy
>Speaker of Parliament Hassan Rowhani was quoted by the state-run radio as
>saying.
>    Rowhani, a Shi'ite Moslem cleric, made the remarks to Maurice Danby
>Copithorne, the Commission's special representative on Iran, who arrived in
>Tehran on Saturday on a six-day mission.
>    ``One can clearly see the double standards of international bodies in
>numerous cases...(including) blatant U.S. interference in the affairs of
>various states, especially Iran,'' said Rowhani, also secretary of Iran's
>National Security Council.
>    ``International bodies show no reaction to these interferences,'' Rowhani
>said, in reference to reported moves in the U.S. Congress to set up a fund for
>covert action against Iran.
>    Copithorne was quoted by the radio as saying: ``My goal is to reflect the
>realities and to prepare realistic reports on the Islamic Republic of Iran,
>even though realities sometimes have objective and subjective aspects.''
>    ``But I will try to describe the objective and unbiased aspects, taking
>into account the current conditions of your country,'' Copithorne was quoted by
>    In a commentary, the radio blasted Western countries for ``always trying to
>use...so called abuses of human rights in Iran as a propaganda tool against the
>Islamic Republic.''
>    The commentary also criticised Reuters for extensively quoting a statement
>by an opposition body led by the Iraq-based Mujahideen Khalq in a dispatch on
>Copithorne's visit.
>    Iran has said Copithorne, a Canadian diplomat, will be free to visit
>Iranian prisons and courts.
>    In December, two other United Nations human rights experts were invited to
>Iran for the first such visits for four years.
>    U.N. bodies have repeatedly accused Iran of widespread human rights abuses,
>but Tehran officials have rejected the criticisms saying they were based on
>biased reports or on lack of knowledge about Islamic principles on which Iran's
>laws are based.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 06:57 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 6 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> U.N. human rights envoy holds talks in Iran
>    NICOSIA, Feb 10 (Reuter) -  A United Nations envoy arrived in Tehran on
>Saturday to investigate human rights in Iran, the official Iranian news agency
>IRNA said.
>    Maurice Danby Copithorne, United Nations Human Rights Commission new
>special representative on rights in Iran, would remain in Iran until Friday,
>IRNA said in a report monitored by the British Broadcasting Corporation.
>    It quoted a UN source as saying Copithorne began talks with Iranian foreign
>ministry officials as soon as he arrived.
>    Copithorne is visiting Iran at the invitation of the Iranian government,
>which in the past has declined to accept U.N. rights investigators.
>    His mission is aimed at gathering material for a report to be presented to
>the next session of the Commission, which will begin six weeks of meetings next
>month in Geneva.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 06:32 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 6 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> Reuters Middle East Highlights
>    MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Florida - The United States plans to increase its
>military presence in the Middle East to counter the growing threat from Iraq
>and Iran, U.S. Defence Secretary William Perry said.
>    - - - -
>    JERUSALEM - Israel's main opposition Likud party said it could accept a May
>28 date for early elections, smoothing the way for Prime Minister Shimon Peres'
>expected announcement next week calling an early poll.
>    - - - -
>    PARIS - A car bomb exploded outside a police station in Algeria this week,
>killing at least six people and wounding 30 others, an Algerian newspaper said.
>    - - - -
>    MANAMA - Bahraini said it had arrested an undisclosed number of people
>accused of fresh arson attacks in several Shi'ite Moslem villages.
>    - - - -
>    AMMAN - A team from Jordan's influential Chamber of Industries, a long-time
>advocate of strong economic ties with Iraq, is in Baghdad to discuss
>cooperation, a chamber official said.
>    - - - -
>    ABU DHABI - Abu Dhabi plans to issue a new tender for the construction of
>one of the Middle East's largest mosques after rejecting the lowest bid of 1.88
>billion dirhams (\$515 million), an industry executive said.
>    - - - -
>    CAIRO - Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak left Cairo for Saudi Arabia to
>perform Umrah or the lesser pilgrimage at the Moslem holy city of Mecca,
>airport officials said.
>    - - - -
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 06:22 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 6 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> Tremor shakes southeastern Iran
>    NICOSIA, Feb 10 (Reuter) - An earthquake measuring 4.5 degrees on the
>Richter Scale shook Zahedan region in southeastern Iran on Saturday, the
>Iranian news agency IRNA reported.
>    It said no casualties were reported after the earthquake struck some 900 km
>(560 miles) southeast of the capital Tehran.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 03:38 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 3 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> Tennis-Thailand lead Iran 3-0 in Davis Cup tie
>    BANGKOK, Feb 10 (Reuter) - Thailand took a winning 3-0 lead over Iran in
>their Davis Cup Asia/Oceania zone group two, first round tie after the doubles
>on Saturday.
>    Result:
>    Narathorn Srichaphan/Vittaya Samrej beat Ramin Raziyani/Mansour Bahrami 7-5
>7-6 6-3
>    The reverse singles will be played on Sunday.
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 00:36 Sat Feb 10  EXP: 0 :00 Tue Feb 13
>
>
> Reuters Middle East Highlights
>    MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla - The United States plans to increase its
>military presence in the Middle East to counter the growing threat from Iraq
>and Iran, U.S. Defence Secretary William Perry said. During a visit to U.S.
>Central Command headquarters at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Fla., Perry
>called Iraq and Iran ``the biggest threats to stability in the Middle East.''
>    - - - -
>    UNITED NATIONS - Iraq believes that the opening round of crucial talks with
>the United Nations on oil-for-food deal are going so smoothly that they may end
>as early as Tuesday, diplomatic sources said. The leader of Iraq's delegation,
>Abdul Amir al-Anbari, told Arab diplomats that he expected the technical talks
>on the plan to be completed by Tuesday. The Iraqi team would then consult with
>its government before another round is scheduled.
>    - - - -
>    PARIS - The mainstream leadership of Algeria's opposition Islamic Salvation
>Front (FIS) in exile disowned a peace initiative by the former head of the
>    - - - -
>    WASHINGTON - The International Monetary Fund said it approved a \$295
>million, three-year loan for Jordan to help the country cash in on the economic
>opportunities provided by peace in the Middle East.
>    - - - -
>    UNITED NATIONS - A senior U.N. official is being sent to Sudan to urge
>compliance with a resolution calling for extradition of three men wanted in an
>assassination attempt against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, a U.N.
>spokesman said.
>    - - - -
>    JERUSALEM - Yitzhak Rabin's Israeli assassin Yigal Amir underwent court
>proposed psychiatric tests after long resisting an insanity defence.
>    - - - -
>    JERUSALEM - Israeli and U.S.-based human rights organisations urged Israel
>to release a Palestinian human rights activist.
>    - - - -
>    PALERMO, Sicily - The head of a Turkish Kurd parliament-in-exile said
>Turkey was standing in the way of a peaceful political solution to the
>country's conflict.
>    - - - -
>    NICOSIA - The body of an Iranian Sunni Moslem cleric accused of having ties
>with Saudi Arabia has been found in southern Iran days after he was held by
>security officials, relatives and opposition sources said.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 21:26 Fri Feb 09  EXP: 1 :00 Mon Feb 12
>
>
> U.S. to increase Mideast defense presence-Perry
>    By Bob Witten
>    MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla, Feb 9 (Reuter) - The United States plans to
>increase its military presence in the Middle East to counter the growing threat
>from Iraq and Iran, U.S. Defence Secretary William Perry said on Friday.
>    During a visit to U.S. Central Command headquarters at MacDill Air Force
>Base in Tampa, Fla., Perry called Iraq and Iran ``the biggest threats to
>stability in the Middle Eaast.''
>    He said he had received recommendations from the Central Command commander
>to build U.S. presence and to increase the prepositioning of U.S. troops and
>    ``I expect to act on a good many of these recommendations when I get back
>to Washington,'' Perry said. He gave no specifics on troop strength or
>movements. Central Command oversees U.S. military action in the region.
>    Perry said there was no immediate threat from either Iran or Iraq but that
>he is worried ``over the long term about both nations making further
>advancements in nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and the ability to
>deliver them.''
>    On Bosnia, Perry said he believes that the Dayton accord will stand but
>added, ``All three signatories must comply with the agreement. As we come to
>potholes in the road, as we have in the last day or two, we will ride over
>those potholes and overcome those problems.''
>    Perrry said he looks forward to the U.S. military having a more traditional
>relationship with Haiti once peacekeepers leave in mid-March.
>    ``U.S. troops will be involved in road repair, bridge building, and
>improving utilities that will be very useful fo the Haitians,'' Perry said.
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 15:02 Fri Feb 09  EXP: 5 :00 Mon Feb 12
>
>
> Iran Sunni cleric dead after arrest - opposition
>    NICOSIA, Feb 9 (Reuter) - The body of an Iranian Sunni Moslem cleric
>accused of having ties with Saudi Arabia has been found in southern Iran days
>after he was held by security officials, relatives and opposition sources said
>on Friday.
>    ``Molavi Ahmad Sayyad was arrested at the Bandar Abbas airport on January
>28 and we are told his body was found outside the city five days later,'' said
>Ali Akbar Mollazadeh, an Iranian Sunni activist living in the United Arab
>Emirates (UAE).
>his Islamic theology school where he taught fellow Baluchis in Iran,''
>Mollazadeh told Reuters by telephone from Sharjah in the UAE.
>    Iran, which is 90 percent Shi'ite, has often blamed unrest in its
>Sunni-populated regions in the southeast on groups allegedly backed by Saudi
>Arabia.
>    A relative of Sayyad said the 50-year-old cleric was in good health when he
>left Dubai in the UAE on a flight for Iran.
>    ``I was told by relatives who had gone to the (Bandar Abbas) airport that
>two security men called out his name and arrested him. Five days later I was
>told his body had been found,'' the relative, who asked to remain anonymous,
>told Reuters by telephone from the UAE.
>    An associate of Sayyad, who asked to remain anonymous, said authorities in
>the southeastern Sistan-Baluchestan province where the cleric was a well known
>religious figure had promised to investigate his death.
>    ``A week has gone and nothing has been announced by officials, except for
>condolences said for his death today at Friday prayers in (province capital)
>Zahedan,'' said the associate who spoke by telephone with Reuters from Iran.
>    In 1990, Sayyad was jailed for five years upon his return after 17 years of
>Islamic studies in Saudi Arabia, Mollazadeh said.
>    ``He was never officially charged but authorities accused him of having
>ties with the Saudi government,'' he added.
>    In 1994, police in the mostly-Sunnite city of Zahedan clashed with armed
>demonstrators who were protesting the demolition of Sunnite mosque.
>
>=END=
>
>
>
>

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 96 15:07:49 EWT
From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
Subject: why I am grumpy
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Jim, perhaps I become grumpy because I am not - as Sen said, given the
right to be wrong.  Perhaps I am sick and tired of being told to be quiet, to
be a good little foot soldier and keep my mouth shut.

I am not exactly sure
what you mean by "getting to work."  Could you please be more specific.

You mention that the some of the best brains in the Baha'i Faith are tied up
o
here on Talisman - or something like that.  You are correct in this.  Aren't
you pleased?  I agreed with you on something.  However, it seems to me that
there is no acknowledgment of this fact from the administration.  You see, all
of these "best brains" came into the Faith 25-30 years ago and were just little
upstart students.  I fear that in the eyes of the administrators this what
these bright people remain - just little upstart kids who should be out
strumming guitars and giving Friday night firesides - not thinking deep and
heavy thoughts.  It is the job of intellectuals to think and to write, Jim.
t
Intellectuals in the Baha'i Faith are not permitted to publish their thoughts
{ O4
Press the key to be added:
in books and journals.  Censorship prohibits this.  So, Talisman is the one
place to express these thoughts.

Alas, because of the prohibitions on publishing, resentment has built up - and
to such an extent that people perhaps aren't as picky about their choice of
words as they might be.  But what is there to lose?  Some of us simply refuse
to hold our tongues and are willing to take the consequencs.  I made up my mind
when I was a kid that I would never live under a repressive system and that I
would fight if I felt I was being deprived of what I consider to be basic human
rights.  This is my choice and I really don't care what anyone thinks of this
position.  It is my choice and mine alone.  I am accountable for my soul.  No
one else is.  If I feel that people are invoking the Covenant to stop people
from talking, I will say so.

I will agree with you that the problems that exist in the Baha'i administration
resemble those found in the Old Order.  I see an effort on the part of many on
Talisman to rectify these problems in a positive way, by delving into the
writings to see how this might be done.  I don't see an attempt to transform
the Baha'i Faith into "the American democracy."  I do see attempts though to
reform the Baha'i Faith and make it into a full fledged religion, make it feel
less oppressive and, in general, bring it a bit more into line with what some
of us thought we were joining years ago when we signed that declaration card.

I sometimes do think we are talking past each other, Jim.  This is not my
intention.  I really do wish we could communicate but there does seem to be
willing to keep trying.  Linda

Kxl

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 12:55:13 EST
Subject: http://www.traveller.com/~hrweb/legal/escr.html#Article 7.1.2

http://www.traveller.com/~hrweb/legal/escr.html#Article 7.1.2

=END=

Date:        Mon, 12 Feb 96 16:20:26 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: re: rights/liberalism

Thanks Eric Pierce for the background to "Individual Rights..."
statement of the House of Justice. I'd like to add that I think the
statement, although brought on by the incidents occurring in California,
addresses a much wider spectrum than those incidents.  It will, in my
opinion, be an important document (ie. as The Promise of Peace will be)
for some time to come. As is so often the case, that statement will
probably only be fully understood after the passage of time, like much
of the Guardian's letters - which is not to say they are understood
sufficiently even now. I'm assuming that your (Eric) comment that it was
"thrashed" a good deal by the principle participants of talisman does
not mean that they exhausted either its meaning or its relevance to the
discussion. The background is helpful for understanding the context.
Rick H.

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 15:23:41 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Colloquium Paper
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Stephen Lambden" ,
"Talisman"

Dear Stephen,

I noted, in the article,  "45 Baha'i Researchers take part in eighth
Irfan Colloquium at Newcastle-upon-Tyne"  (AB, Mulk B.E. 152/Febuary 7,
1996) that you had presented a paper on "'the postion of Mirza Yahya
Sub-i-Azal:  Some Aspects of Azali Anti-Baha'i Polemic and Baha'i
Apologetics"'.  I would be very interested to know if you would care to
post the text of your paper--here--on Talisman.  I would enjoy perusing
its contents, and I have a good degree of confidence that others will
feel the same.

BTW, I am familiar with your fair city--on the borders of my beloved
Scottland;  and was most taken by the hospitality shown me by strangers
(who were not Baha'is) who were more like friends during one of my brief
stays there in the 1970's.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 13:43:53 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Mystics Overboard a Secret Message response.
To: burlb@bmi.net

Dear Powerful Secret Influential and Hidden DR. Burl.
Due to the demand from one Linda Walbridge for the offering for sale
the black and white lace
Ninja suits,she is so famous for , at the Mystical knees up Conference
being held next to the newly
built  rather large garden compost container. The aromas of
rotting manure and
leaves will put the attendees in touch with nature, current temperature
160 degrees and rising. We have only now started to plan the Book
offerings at the conference.

I have to tell you Burl the rascal Culhane the former Mystic , that
dastardly chap Langness, the book devourer Scholl, rocking and rolling
Cole and limpet mine Lee all refused to have your book as part of the
registration package. I can talk like this to you as this is a secret
message for your eyes only, so it will never appear on Talisman. Linda
threw a temper tantrum when I said it was
impossible to make everybody wear Ninja outfits. She threatened to
throw John outside until I agreed to at least have them available. It
has been hard creating a production line here at Bosch to
produce them but we are geared for service, pass the thread and needle.

I still think it is wrong that John has to sleep under the stairs at
night. On Talisman they go on about rights nobody mentions
the torments that poor man is going through at the moment.

Do you really intend to ask people to participate in a survey to
discover which person is deleted without reading the post they sent the
most. Sort of Talisman: Top Ten Deletions, I do not understand why you
are going to asking Sandy Fotos to comply the figures Ahang Rabbani is
the Talisman Stats man. Linda tells me she is going to delete that
Logan ruffian when she sees him at Juan's special request the rumor has
it.

I shall prepare your table for journeys into the astral plane are you
inviting Bruce Burrill to come and K. Paul to assist you in creating
mayhem and confusion. I promise to protect Bruce from the lets get
Burrill now squad lead by that old bar bruisers himself Coleman. I
believe the fee scale should be as follows : Whiners and moaners \$195,
Against Adam Smith Day \$95, Anti-Economists \$75, supporters of Haines
and Logan \$50, the for Juan squad and against Juan squad finding true
unity at \$50, for the illiberals say \$25,deprived of all rights
including air \$20, for liberals \$10 and normal people \$5.

I am glad you have realized the spiritual value of Economics just watch
out for that scoundrel Haines. I notices some chap called Johnson
wanted advice on a career change apparently there is not enough Lawyers
in the Planet. Stephen should get a life and become an Economist and
support Adam Smith Day ,did I tell you that our beloved List Owner
posted to me and said he reads the Wall Street Journal every day no
doubt with their dog Guli licking his ear under the stairs. Does this
make him a closet supporter of Economists that is the trouble so few
want to come out of the closet, where is Orey when you need him.

Qanta apparently has not understood that your book on the surface is
not a Baha'i book but underneath is a different story, unlike books
that are Baha'i books on the surface but are what underneath I do not
understand that? We have copies available of this essential reading for
any wannabe Baha'i Scholar do we need more you ask well you are not
speaking to your publisher are so what do we do?

By the way Talisman lurker Muthadia Rice obtained a copy of your book
this weekend. Did you know that a lurcher or lurker is actually a
mongrel dog used by poachers and other such lowlife types alias Bill
Sykes in Oliver Twist.

Linda is going to lead a group on singing tiptoe through the
tulips in the upper meadow I hear.We can stand and watch as they get
waist deep in the mud and drink our caffee lattees. Why is that Seattle
chap so keen on touring the tattoo parlors of his city?

Will there be fish and chips in the future, how many cookies may one
eat in a day, why do you have to eat dessert at the end of a meal when
you are already full, will Sandy's sweet daughter tell her mother about
her tattoos, dare you tell your wife about yours, will Linda do hand
stands at the onference and sing 'Why are we waiting' at registration.
These and many more are the questions that need answering.

Secret , Powerful, Influential, Hidden, Elite , and jolly good sort
Uncle DR. Derek.
PS isn't it great to have secret messages I hope this one stays off
Talisman though.

=END=

From: coleman@olimp.irb.hr
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 22:14:47 MET-DST
To: TALISMAN@indiana.edu, SEN.MCGLINN@rl.rulimburg.nl
Subject: Defending Jamshed Fozdar!                 IN DEFENSE OF JAMSHED FOZDAR

Bruce: Jack Coleman, I think you need to post your reply to me on
Talisman. I would be very interested in hearing other Baha'i
responses to what you've written, none of which surprises me in the
problematic books.

Jack: First, let us talk about Jamshed Fozdar. You claim Fozdar
in grammar on the "Twin Miracles," used material from Carus as well
as other, as you call them, "out-of-date" references. Since modern
western scholars interpret and translate according to their own
tastes and biases, who is to know how "outdated" the so-called
modern western scholars you use will be when future "modern"
scholars reinterpret and retranslate? This process of "outdating"
previous generations of "scholars" must have been going on for
almost 2,500 years.
The ancient sayings of the Buddha weren't put to writing until
250 years after His death. At that time at least fourteen schools
of Buddhism interpreted differently what he had said. In the
absence of any authentically verifiable mechanism to interpret
sayings of the Buddha and also of an infallible mechanism to
interpret such teachings, how "out of date" and misinterpreted are
such. Who is to know which of the successive schools of thought
interpret faultlessly the original meanings and purposes of
Buddha's teachings?

Bruce: The bottom line here is ...you are unwittingly passing off
as being Buddhist texts, thanks to Fozdar, stuff that is not...it
is obvious that you are doing no more than parroting Fozdar. You
have not read the texts in question expect in Fozdar's wretched
books, which are full of distortions.

Jack: Now let us talk about the source of our previous quotes. You
go to great lengths, in your recent retort nullifying creation and
a Creator, accusing us of "parroting Fozdar's wretched books" on
these concepts. Again, you're barking up the wrong tree, because
our references on creation and created things were from Professor
Edwin A. Burtt's book: "The Teachings of the Compassionate Buddha,"
that even Arnold J. Toynbee, the world famous historian, looked
forward to and praised. We said to you, but perhaps you didn't read
it, that "in one of our books [in this case E.A. Burtt's], the Max
Muller translations was used."
So let's not "blame" Fozdar! If he said the same things as
Professor Burtt did, then maybe it's OK. You will probably want to
dismiss Professor Burtt's book too as "out of date," "mistaken,"
"distorted" and "fabricated" since it also conflicts with your and
so-called "modern scholars'" interpretations. In this book as well
as others we have, the Buddha refers over and over again to
"created things," "creatures," "the Uncreated," "the Omniscient,"
"the Absolute," the Self-Existent," "the Eternal," "the  Supreme,"
"the Blessed One," "Holy One," "Your Reverence," "My Lord," etc.
Are these phrases all "out-of-date," "mistranslated," and
"misinterpreted" as well?  Let's be fair!

Bruce: (_kata_, to make) is translated as "created"

Jack: You want to change the word "create" to "make" from the
Sanskrit "kata". So what is the Sanskrit word for "create" so we
can compare?
If you make something out of nothing it is to create. If you
make something out of something, it is to make or to fashion. As
the famous Buddhist Professor Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki says: "that
words are words and no more. When words cease to correspond with
facts it is time for us to part with words and return to facts."
One must also judge on the basis of which makes more sense. So, God
is the Creator and the Word of God (that the Buddha calls the
Universal Mind) is the Maker or the Fashioner.  Since the
"Self-Existent," the "Omniscient," the "Omnipotent" are basically
all Attributes of God or of the Word of God, should we "modernize"
the translation of these "words of the Buddha" too; huh, Bruce?

Bruce: There is no god, no creator being talked about here.

Jack: Really? This same eminent Buddhist source, Dr. Suzuki,
Professor of Buddhist Philosophy, also seems to disagree with your
atheistic Buddhist notions. In his invited lecture to the Emperor
of Japan, he chose vital doctrines from the various Buddhist sects
and presented what he claims to be the Essence of Buddhism: "As I
see it, this is the summit of oriental thought as developed by the
finest Buddhist minds, and represents Japan's contribution to world
philosophy...
"We need to see God face to face, that we may live in each
other...In Christianity self is non-assertive, and God stands above
and besides the self. There is always a sharp distinction between
the two, and the two are never merged. If there is a merging it
takes the form of merging the self in God, and God never merges
Himself in the Self. There is no mutuality between the two. In this
sense Christianity is thoroughly dualistic, whereas in Buddhism God
stands on the same level as man. God becomes man and man becomes
god. Christians may think this reflects on the dignity of God, but
Buddhism asserts not only the merging but the distinction is
retained, for merging does not efface distinction. God and man are
distinct yet mutually merged. Thus Buddhist mysticism, if it is a
form of mysticism, is not the same as Christianity in its
experience of the mystic union."
Is this world renown Buddhist scholar, Dr. Suzuki, also
"out-of-date," "mistranslating" and "misinterpreting" the oriental
texts of Buddha too?

Bruce, you never responded to seven other quotes and
discussions on what the Buddha apparently said about "union with
Brahma," "the Awakened, the Omniscient, the Trackless," "synonym
for the Tathagata: Dhamma-body and again Brahma-body, and again
Dhamma-become and again Brahma-become," "Besides there were
countless Pratyeka Buddhists [but not fully enlightened Buddhas],
all of them Arhats," Buddha is also referred to in the texts as the
Self-Existent, the Blessed One, the Universal Mind..."The Master
said to me: `All the Buddhas and all sentient beings are nothing
but the Universal Mind, besides which nothing exists. This Mind,
which has always existed, is unborn and indestructible'","Homage to
the Self-Existent...Everlasting, Unlimited, and Which cannot be
surpassed." These phrases are not only in Fozdar's books!

Bruce:  Fozdar, who arrogantly dismisses modern scholars as well as
Buddhists themselves as not having the correct knowledge of
Buddhism and the Buddha, sets out to tell us all what the Buddha
really taught

Jack: That is strange, Bruce! Other Buddhist sources also seem to
For example, the World Fellowship of Buddhists states: "The author
of the God of Buddha is obviously a great scholar with an extensive
background of knowledge of comparative religion. He is well-versed
in both the Theravad and Mahayana scriptures. His presentation is
also unique and his painstaking efforts are hardly excelled by any
scholar, while his style of writing is marvelously majestic."

The Journal of the Siam Society states: "The book in question
is the God of Buddha...neither on the dust jacket, nor in the body
of the work, are we given any information about the author or his
background, not even his nationality. But that he is thoroughly
equipped for his task and writes out of a wide knowledge of
original sources, is evident from the text...his language is
crystal clear. The book is a fresh statement of the Buddhist faith,
not a conscious argument with anyone. It can be highly recommended
for study and as a departure point to inter-faith exchange.

The World Order (Buddhist Studies, Yale University) exclaims:
"The subject of Jamshed K. Fozdar's The God of Buddha is indeed a
welcome surprise and its excellent treatment is long overdue. Here
is an impressive soundly reasoned thesis...Exceptional scholarship
is in evidence throughout this challenging study of the Enlightened
One...The book, therefore, can be recommended as an eminently
reliable reference work."

In his forward to "The Way of the Buddha," the great saintly
mystic and leader, Mahatma Gandhi, in the same spirit as Jamshed
the Buddha's rejection of a nonsensical concept of God: "I have
hears it contended times without number and I have read in books
claiming to express the spirit of Buddhism, that the Buddha did not
believe in God. In my humble opinion such a belief contradicts the
very central fact of the Buddh's teaching. Confusion has risen over
His rejection, and just rejection, of the base things that passed
in His generation under the name of God. He undoubtedly rejected
the notion that a being called God could be actuated by malice,
could repent of His actions, and like the kings of the earth could
possibly be open to temptation and bribes, and could have
favorites.
"God's laws are eternal and unalterable and not separable from
God himself. It is an indispensible condition of His very
perfection. Hence the great confusion that the Buddha disbelieved
in God and simply believed in the moral law.
"Because of this confusion about God Himself arose the
confusion about the proper understanding of the great word Nirvana.
Nirvana is undoubtedly not utter extinction of all that is base in
us, all that is vicious in us, all that is corrupt and corruptible
in us. Nirvana is not like the black dead peace of the grave, but
the living peace, the living happiness of a soul which is conscious
of itself and conscious of having found its own abode in the heart
of the Eternal.
"Great as the Buddha's contribution to humanity was in
restoring God to His eternal place, in my opinion, greater still
was His contribution to humanity in His exacting regard for all
life, be it ever so low.
"His whole soul rose up in mighty indignation against a belief
that a being called God required for His satisfaction the living
blood of animals in order that He might be pleased - animals who
were His own creation.
"The one thing that the Buddha showed India was that God was
not a God who can be appeased by sacrificing innocent animals. On
the contrary, He held that those who sacrifice animals in the hope
of pleasing God were guilty of a double sin."
As the Illustrated Weekly of India announces: "The God of
Buddha may have provided the widest bridge for the teeming Hindu
masses to cross over and make Buddhism the major faith of the land
of its birth."
Should we also call Mahatama Ghandhi's wisdom false?

The Library Journal states: "Fozdar does emphasize a spiritual
aspect of Buddhism which should be of interest to those seeking
spiritual answers from the Buddhist Faith."

IMHO, the significance of Jamshed Fozdar's publications, like
Mahatma Ghandhi's book, as well as those in the Baha'i Writings,
rests in their possible rejuvenation of Buddhism to its appropriate
position in the total perspective of recurring religious revelation
as well as eradicating the notion of its being an anomaly within
the genuine structure of Religion. By trying to bring this one
great exception, Buddhism, back into the fold of revealed
religions, Jamshed Fozdar shows that recurring religious
revelation, founded on the belief in the Supreme, is as applicable
to the problems harassing humanity today as it was for our
ancestors.
So far we have been quoting only texts on the Buddha. It is
only fair that we quote one sentence from Baha'u'llah that might
fit the occasion. In His Book of Certitude, referring to those who
turn away from and stir up mischief about Him, He declares: "such
behavior can be attributed to naught save the petty-mindeness of
such souls as tread the valley of arrogance and pride, are lost in
the wilds of remoteness, walk in the ways of their idle fancy, and
concern is mere opposition; their sole desire is to ignore the
truth." Please, Bruce, do not let this happen to you!

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 16:14:40 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: why I am grumpy--After,"The Big Chill" pt. 2
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: , "Talisman"

> I fear that in the eyes of the administrators this what
>these bright people remain - just little upstart kids who should be out
>strumming guitars and giving Friday night firesides - not thinking deep and
>heavy thoughts.

Dear Linda, or should I call you Hillary (laughter),

I know your not going to be baking cookies either, although, that

We're going to get our turn at bat, you know it, and I know it.  The
question is how will we measure up?  How do we measure up?

I wish we were back strumming guitars on friday night at firesides--I
really loved those times--they seem to be long gone.  Going back to the
future is difficult for me in this post-Big Chill world.  Maybe the
Mysticism Conference at Bosch will be a transcendant "The Return of the
Secaucus 7".  If these film references seem obscure, I essentially mean
that as we re-evaluate our struggle--a commitment to the Cause, we might
do self-examination.  In the film "The Big Chill" the question was asked,
Did we change the world or did it change us?

On to the big chill,  Linda--11 days and counting.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Mark Bamford
To: "'Talisman'"
Subject: Qiblih... What direction?
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 14:04:21 -0800

Picked this up on the Web. Any thoughts?

-------------------------------------------------------------

Explanation of Great Circle Directions

While prescribing turning to the Qiblih for the Obligatory Prayers, =
Bah=E1'u'll=E1h also draws upon a statement from the Qur'an in
addressing our physical orientation for other prayers:=20

`To God belong the East and the West; whithersoever ye turn there is the =
presence of God. For God is All

Since He draws a distinction between the two types of prayer, it seems =
that we really ought to give a bit more thought to the
specific orientation for Obligatory Prayers.=20

For those who live a long way from Bahj=ED it is almost always a great =
shock when they first learn how counterintuitive the true
Qiblih direction is from their location. The immediate reaction is =
usually to reject the information as being either nonsensical or
irrelevant. People would much rather turn toward a direction which, to =
them, feels like where Bahj=ED should be, than to modify
their deep-seated beliefs about what direction actually means on a =
spherical planet. The result is that Bah=E1'=EDs, over most of the
world, effectively are turning in random directions when they pray.=20

All of this confusion stems from a nearly universal use of flat, =
Mercator-like map projections of the world. For all practical
purposes, five hundred years after Columbus, most people still perceive =
the world as flat. Just a few minutes with a globe and
a piece of string can easily disabuse a person of these naive notions of =
direction. Merely by placing the string on the globe so
that it touches the origin and destination of the route, and then =
tightening the string so that there is no slack, while keeping it
touching the origin and destination points, will illustrate quickly the =
shortest route between the two points. Few of us ever feel
moved to try this--the experiment requires a little bit of our time to =
hunt down a globe and a piece of string, and is therefore
inconvenient.=20

The first point to realize is that compass directions have only local =
relevance. When an airliner flies from Chicago to London,
the pilot does not just set a compass direction and maintain it until =
the arrival at the destination. In flying directly to London,
the direction which the compass shows will change continuously along the =
entire route. The airliner could fly along a constant
compass direction, but it would take it far out of its way, and would =
burn a great deal more fuel. Over short distances the
difference is small, but over thousands of miles it costs a lot of money =
to fly so far off the shortest intended course.=20

A flight path with a constant compass direction is called a rhumb line. =
This is the type of path that most people imagine when
they attempt to turn themselves toward the Qiblih. Plotted on a flat =
Mercator map, a rhumb line looks straight, but when
plotted on a globe, the rhumb line is decidedly curved.=20

It is clear that one may take an infinite number of paths between any =
two points on the globe and reach the intended
destination, but if one is going to maintain the same sense of direction =
to the Qiblih which is experienced by someone who is
within sight of the structure, one can do so only by following what is =
called a great-circle path. On the surface of a globe, the
shortest (direct) distance between two points is along the great-circle =
route. The initial (local) compass direction of this route
is the same as the straight line direction through the earth between the =
two points. In fact, the great-circle route is just the
geometric intersection of the plane, which passes through the origin and =
destination points and the point at the center of the
Earth, with the sphere of the Earth.=20

To quickly see how faulty our naive perception of direction is, imagine =
that there is a circle of people around the shrine of
Bah=E1'u'll=E1h, with everyone facing the shrine. Now, imagine all the =
people begin to back up.=20

Concentrate on the individual who is facing directly south. That person =
is walking backwards directly north. Just before he
reaches the North Pole he is still facing south. As soon as he passes =
beyond the North Pole he is facing north, even though he
is still facing in exactly the same direction with respect to Bahj=ED.=20

The same thing happens to all of the other people circled around the =
shrine. They remain pointed in exactly the same direction
with respect to Bahj=ED, but their compass direction changes =
continuously as they get farther and farther away.=20

Again, the easiest way to begin to visualize these things is to look at =
a globe. If you don't have a globe, you might pay a visit
to your public library which probably does have one. If not, you can =
take a felt-tipped pen and draw yourself one on an
orange, a ball of clay, or whatever. Our faulty intuitions can be =
retrained with just a little effort.=20

While many Bah=E1'=EDs may see this exercise (as well as this web page) =
as trifling or inconsequential, this perspective might be
veiling them from a grand global metaphor latent within this law. Just =
as a compass needle is drawn to align itself with the
magnetic poles of the Earth, when once Bah=E1'=EDs throughout the world =
fully comprehend the Earth as a sphere, they will be
able consciously to turn themselves, in prayer, toward the direction of =
Bahj=ED, the Earth's spiritual pole. We will then be able to
witness, in our mind's eye, a global, never-ending choreography of =
people around the world, throughout the 24-hour day,
turning themselves in prayer toward Bahj=ED. With our current flat-Earth =
approach to the Qiblih, all we can visualize is chaos as
people point themselves in effectively random directions in accord only =
with their own imaginations.=20

-------------------------------------------

For example, living in Los Angeles, CA USA - following these =
instructions, I would be about 7506 miles (12,080 km) away, Bearing=3D23 =
degress, and should approximately turn to the North North East in order =
to face the Qiblih.

Yours in the Faith,

Mark Bamford

=END=

From: SFotos@eworld.com
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 15:04:54 -0800
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: bahai-st@jcccnet.johnco.cc.ks.us
Subject: progress of souls in the next world

Dear friends,

A greatly beloved sociolinguist, Dr. Charlene Sato of the University of
Hawaii, passed away a few days ago. Her students, friends and colleagues all
over the world are setting up scholarship funds and donations to commemorate
her precious memory.  Although many of these people are not particularly
religious, if not actually distrustful of organized religion, they are
nonetheless very receptive at this time of loss to the idea that our efforts
here after the passing of a great soul gladdens and influences that soul in
some future state.

'Abdu'l-Baha says that progress in the next world depends on the Mercy of God
and can be influenced by prayers and good deeds done in that soul's name.
House of Justice regarding a contribution to the Arc fund made in the name of
two believers:

"This loving act in their memory is indicative of the solidarity among the
members of your community , who may be assured that their gift will bring
happiness to the immortal souls of these two believers and that it will be a
cause of their progress in the Kingdom of Eternity, as promised in our
Writings."
(May, 21, 1991, to the Local Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Kurume,
Japan)

We are also told to ,"Pray for them as they pray for us."

Goodby, Charlie.

Best,
Sandy Fotos

=END=

From: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 19:15:41 -0500
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: 'New' vs 'Old' World Order

Dear Don  ,

I think what you described would be one of the dimensions to sort out
the difference .  We may disagree  on this  that i dont think the "New Order"
is equivalent with the Bahai Community or the Revelation of Bahau llah . The
community has a role and a mission within the evolvong *order* just s Bahau
lah's revelation, IMV, is meant to explain the ethical / spiritual principles
which underly the evolution of SPIRIT  but is not equivalent to that SPIRIT.
Until somebody can show me a better mystical and ethical guide to the
spiritual and social , personal and physical galaxy we inhabit  I will hold
out for Bahau lah's understanding of the evolution of the COSMOS ; "how to be
and how to live " as Abdul Baha has said .

warm regards ,
Terry

=END=

From: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 19:15:33 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: re: no subject  2

Dear Richard etal ,

I wonder if this title no subject is a zen koan ?  :)

I think we agree ,whatever differences appear are more a function of
respective emphasis and our vantage point on the gyre .

Reality is more than the individual or the social unit .  I suppose I am
a weird sort of neo-platonist .  I think the SPIRIT  is evolving and what the
Prophets do  is attempt to communicate the form in which that SPIRIT is
evolving . My understanding of this is heavilly influenced by Bahau llah in
SV 's especialy the Valley of Unity .

It is his discussion of many-colored globes , effulgence of light and
wine of oneness that influenced my thinking . Experientially i have had some
glimpe of the Void beyond "forms " or" Faiths"  which yet manifests itself in
Forms that it might be "known ".

So ya I guess Iam saying there is a third way taking place in this
dimension of existence beyond fundamentalism or pluralism in religious and
political terms . That third way is unity. It preserves all the necessary
qualities of fundamental (ism ) as in foundations as well as the diversity of
forms in pluralism with its attendant ideas of rights , tolerance and so
forth . This third dimension or way seems to me characterized as the station
of unity which Bahau llah   states as his purpose in disclosing as the
evolving Reality of SPIRIT and what we may or must do to live in fullness
with it . Spirit is both Being and Becoming.

In the study class I have been doing on this i have tied to describe
these stations as characterized by the folowing expressions  of the Truth and
foundation of all things.
Fundamentalism(s) by the assertion - this is the one True Faith
Pluralism    by the assertion - all Faiths are True
Unity by the assertion  -  The Faith of God or as I prefer the One True
God .

It is the third which i believe best describes what Bahau llah had up
His sleeve .

My remarks about old and new orders ought to be understood in this context
. That i failed to explain that should be attributed to the lateness of the
hour and not taking my own advice to better spell out background assumptions
. :)

warm regards,
Terry

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 19:03:56 +0000
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: S.N.Lambden@newcastle.ac.uk (Stephen Lambden)

ATTEMPTS TO USE IT ARE BOUNCING BACK.
THANKS,

STEVE

Stephen N. Lambden
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 2PQ
England. U.K.

Voice/Fax. +44 [0] 191. 2818597
Email S.N.Lambden@ncl.ac.uk

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 17:03:11 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Fwd: Re: Bahai gets death sentence in Iran -French report
To: talisman@indiana.edu
To: calbahais@gsb-yen.stanford.edu
To: farshid@ix.netcom.com
To: Bosch@USBNC.org
To: barney@leith.demon.co.uk
To: Baha'i-Discuss@bcca.org
To: Marsha.Gilpatrick@USBNC.org
To: JGalata@aol.com
To: chuck@ccs.carleton.ca
To: faustini@asu.edu
To: burlb@bmi.net
To: Tom.Price@Nashville.com
To: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
To: JBuckglenn@aol.com
To: farshid@sandisk.com

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To: bahai-st@jcccnet.johnco.cc.ks.us
From: Nigel Jollands
Subject: Re: Bahai gets death sentence in Iran -French report
X-Mailer:
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Precedence: bulk

In bahai-st today:

Thought this might clarify some of the details surrounding the news of
the
death sentence of Dhabihu'llah Mahrami.

>------- Forwarded Message Follows -------
>To:            "Baha'i Discuss"
>Subject:       Bahai gets death sentence in Iran -French report
>Date:          Mon, 12 Feb 96 10:17:56 PST
>
>         PARIS (Reuter) - An Islamic revolutionary court in Iran has
>sentenced to death a 49-year-old Bahai for apostasy, returning
>to his original faith after converting to Islam, the French
>branch of the Bahai faith said Sunday.
>         Dhabihu'llah Mahrami, an Agriculture Department employee in
>Yazd province, will also have all his possessions confiscated
>according to the court's ruling handed down in the past few
>days, a Bahai spokeswoman said.
>         Mahrami, born a Bahai, was accused of converting to Islam in

>1981 to avoid being fired from his government job but returned
>to the Bahai faith seven years later, according to translations
>of court documents provided by the French Bahais.
>         ``The Bahais of France fear that this verdict marks a
>resumption of open persecution against our co-religionists in
>Iran.
>         ``Thanks to the pressures of international opinion,
>executions had stopped...but there were still more subtle
>persecutions aimed at strangling them economically and
>repressing them socially,'' she said.
>         The Bahai faith, an off-shoot of Islam, was created in Iran
>150 years ago. It says it has six million members worldwide
>including 350,000 in Iran where, according to the court
>documents released in Paris, it is officially considered ``a
>         The last execution of a Bahai in Iran was in 1992 when
>Bahman Samandari, a leading community member, was executed.
>

Loving regards

Nigel
Nigel Jollands
Monitoring Analyst
Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority
P O Box 388
Wellington
DDI (04) 470 2211

-
To switch to the digested list,
send this to major@johnco.cc.ks.us
-
unsubscribe bahai-st
subscribe bahai-st-digest
end

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 96 09:52 PST
To: "Richard C. Logan"
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Trout Replicants
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Richard (Free Huey II) Logan:

To advertise means "to post public notice."
A trout mask, in public, is noticed, be it authentic or replicated.
I have never had it explained to me the difference between a mask and a
replica of a mask -- this is more of an art question for Sonja.  This may
relate to the multi-levular nature of reality and all those things on planes
you mentioned in your previous post. (I think they are called "flight
attendents.")

I would leave Trout Mask Replica off your signature if you are going to
post half of a Tablet by Baha'u'llah.  You will notice the difference
between my consistent signature (an informative and valuable message about
my current book) and say, Marc Foster's old one, which included not only his
complete resume, but directions to his grandmother's house in Iowa, and
three of his favorite recipes.

As for the relative nature of reality, we are unaware of our own spiritual
station - be it AM, FM, or Shortwave -- and, as Robert Parrish noted, this
is the meaning of Zappa's "Help, I'm a Rock!"

Burl, with apologies to those who are unfamiliar with the cultural
references in this post.

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 01:28:57 UT
From: "Hannah E. Reinstein"
To: talisman@indiana.edu, "Alec Bourne"
Subject: RE: Tattooless in Seattle (& everywhere?) (fwd)

This conclusion is an extreme stretch. I assume that it's just for effect? If
literal, you may as well apply it to cosmetics, tye-died shirts and pocket
protectors. I was planning to get another tattoo until I found out that the
Blood Bank wouldn't permit me to donate for a full year if I did that. I'm
about to get my 4-gallon pin so I decided to forget the tattoo.

The closest thing I can find to what you might be referring to is the
following:

The Lord hath relieved you, as a bounty on His part, of the restrictions that
formerly applied to clothing and to the trim of the beard. He,
verily, is the Ordainer, the Omniscient. Let there be naught in your demeanour

of which sound and upright minds would disapprove, and make not yourselves
the playthings of the ignorant. Well is it with him who hath adorned himself
with
the vesture of seemly conduct and a praiseworthy character. He is assuredly
reckoned with those who aid their Lord through distinctive and outstanding
deeds.
THE KITAB-I-AQDAS, p. 76
(Baha'i World Centre, 1992)

Hannah
----------
From: 	owner-talisman@indiana.edu on behalf of Alec Bourne
Sent: 	Sunday, 11 February, 1996 23:15 PM
To: 	talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: 	Re: Tattooless in Seattle (& everywhere?) (fwd)

I've been told, that somewhere in the aqdas.. it is said that we should not
make ourselves into objects for the amusement of others < massive
paraphrasing here> and that this has in turn
been interpreted as, do not tattoo, or pierce, or modify your body.. such
that it becomes something of amuzement to others..  I suppose this would
also mean do not dye, bodybuild, have reconstructive surgery either??

=END=

From: "Mark A. Foster"
Subject: New vs. Old World Order
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 19:26:40 -0600 (CST)

To: talisman@indiana.edu

Hi, Terry -

You wrote to Don -

T >We may disagree  on this  that i dont think the "New Order" is
T >equivalent with the Bahai Community or the Revelation of Bahau llah .

As I see it, the New Order is the Covenant of Baha'u'llah, the Love
of God, the Will of God, or divine Law. It is the divinely cohesive
pattern for human relationships. That divine ordering of creation is
destined, IMO, as we move closer to the Golden Age, to be progressively
manifested in the world of human affairs.

OTOH, the Baha'i Community is the ecclesia (spiritual in-gathering)
of the new age. It is represented in a community increasingly animated
by the power of the Covenant (the animating principle of the World Order
of Baha'u'llah, i.e., the spirit of faith).

Finally, the Revelation of Baha'u'llah is, IMO, the manifestation of
the Kingdom of Concealment (the world of the Divine Essence) as the
Kingdom of Revelation (the Greater World). Divine Revelation, from my
POV, is the Word of God, the Knowledge of God, or the divine Logos which
is fully embodied in the Perfect Man.

To the Light,

Mark (Foster)

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 12:24:42 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Trout Replicants
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Burl  Barer"
Cc: "Talisman"

> I would leave Trout Mask Replica off your signature if you are going to
>post half of a Tablet by Baha'u'llah.

Dear Doctor,  (I'm damaged--Mick Jagger)

Are you suggesting a signature wieght loss program?

Its really not half a tablet, but a most favorite saying of mine from
Baha'u'llah.  Some signatures, I fear, must remain fat.  At least
temporarily.  I never really wanted one, but felt if it must be so--then
on must adorn one's self to their taste.

I agree it would not be tasteful, though, to hang a mask alongside a
tablet.

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: 12 Feb 96 13:19:18 EST
From: Steven Scholl <73613.2712@compuserve.com>
To: Talisman
Subject: Jim Nelson on Law, Rights, Due Process

Friends,

I have been trying to catch up with the thread on rights and liberalism. A
friend just sent me a page from a 1992 edition of ONE COUNTRY, an official
publication of the Baha'i International Community. It was an account of the
Third International Dialogue on the Transition to a Global Society held at the
Landegg Academy which included a mix of international jurists, UN agency reps,
NGO and academic and law scholars. Judge Jim Nelson was one of the Baha'i reps
and stated the areas in which agreement was reached, and I quote from the
article:

"We agreed that the basis for a just and global soceity must be, of course, the
rule of law. The rule of law embaces every aspect of life, from the environment
to due process". Judge Nelson said other points of agreement in defining a just
future society were freedom of thought, expression and action; economic justice;
racial justice; equality of men and women; and environmental justice. "There
were some differences of opinion about the equality of men and women that need
further exploration, but nobody was at odds with the need for freedom of
expression, Judge Nelson said. END QUOTE

Now the obvious question to ask is when will the Baha'i community internalize
what it advocates in international forums as being good, just and true? As has
been advocated by many before me here on Talisman, we have a wonderful start
with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It is seems that if US NSA
members speaking in an official capacity endorse freedom of thought, expression
and action, due process, and the rule of law as universal rights, then such
rights must apply within the Baha'i community or we are deceiving the world and
ourselves.

Sen's recent post on rights and maturity was extremely helpful to me. I think he
has framed the issues in a most helpful way. Since, as Abdu'l-Baha reminds us
frequently, this is not the world of perfection but rather of imperfections, no
matter how far we mature we will need protection via rights that are clearly
defined and protected. I would suspect that even in the Most Great Peace there
will be the rule of law for the protection of individual honor and dignity.

Steve Scholl

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 16:49:49 +1300
To: SFotos@eworld.com, talisman@indiana.edu
From: robert.johnston@stonebow.otago.ac.nz (Robert Johnston)
Subject: Re: progress of souls in the next world

Dear Sandy,
>
>'Abdu'l-Baha says that progress in the next world depends on the Mercy of God
>and can be influenced by prayers and good deeds done in that soul's name.

Does this mean we will perform no virtuous deeds in the next world?  And:
do you have any clue regarding the primary cause of spiritual progress in
this world?

Jus' wunnering, and smiling in a rather silly way,

Robert.

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 23:27:13 -0500 (EST)
From: Cheshmak A Farhoumand
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: bahai-exchange-uk@bcca.org
Subject: New Faculty Position (fwd)

Dear Friends, Allah-u-Abha. There is a new faculty postion in my
Clements at the address below. If you have any questions, please do not
hesitate to contact me through email. It would be wonderful and of utmost
importance to have a Baha'i with the necessary qualifications on the Faculty
here.

If you feel you know someone who may be interested in this position, do
not hesitate to forward the message below to them.

Thank you and regards,

Cheshmak Farhoumand
Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 18:08:37 +0100
From: Kevin Clements
To: PEACE STUDIES
Subject: New Faculty Position

Position Announcement
Professor ( Rank Open)
Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution
George Mason University

The Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (ICAR) seeks a professor
in the field for appointment by August 1996. This will be a tenure track
position. Salary is negotiable, commensurate with qualifications and
experience.

The successful applicant will participate in the Institute's research and
teaching programs at the master's and doctoral levels. We seek scholars
with a demonstrated capacity for creatrive thinking,collaborative research
and cross disciplinary approaches to the study of conflict. Experience with
the practical resolution and transformation of conflict is also desirable.
The successful applicant will assist the expansion of ICAR's core research,
intervention and teaching programs within the university and wider
community.

Applicants from all relevant aspects of the field will be considered.
Important qualities include strong academic credentials as well as
practical experience in either the national or international field. A Ph.D
( or its equivalent), publications and teaching experience in the field of
conflict analysis is essential.

The Institute is a degree granting center consisting of scholars and
practitioners from diverse disciplines and professional background. Members
of the Institute are devoted to the study and resolution of intractable
social conflicts at all levels of society and in diverse cultural and
institutional settings.

Applicants should forward a letter of application, a curriculum vitae, two
examples of recent publications, and the names, addresses and telephone
numbers of three academic referees to : MSN 4D3, Chair, Search Committee,
Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, George Mason University,
4400 University Drive Fairfax, VA 22030-4444. Closing Date for applications
is March 8 1996. Applications from women and minorities are strongly
encouraged. AA/EEO

PLEASE CIRCULATE THIS TO ANYONE YOU THINK MIGHT BE QUALIFIED FOR THIS POSITION

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Kevin Clements.
Director,
Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution
George Mason University
Fairfax, Virginia 22032-4444
USA
Phone 703 993 1305
Fax 703 993 1302
e mail kclement@gmu.edu

=END=

From: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 23:30:52 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject:  re:new order old order

Mark :   dear buddy you absolutely lost me on this one . I have read and
reread it and cant make any sense out of it .  The problem is I dont
understand the referent in your terminology . i know your doing a
metaphysical thing here but all i can come up with is a fancy way of
collapsing COSMOS into Bahai jargon and the rest od existemce disappears in
the process. I dont mean this disrespectfully , perhaps someone else , Nima
maybe, could de-code this for me so it would be meaningful . In true
Wittgenstein sense yours is a language -game i dont comprehend in this case.

warmest regards ,
Terry

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 96 21:04 PST
To: robert.johnston@stonebow.otago.ac.nz (Robert Johnston)
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: progress of souls in the next world
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>
>do you have any clue regarding the primary cause of spiritual progress in
>this world?

Absolute integrity, manifest justice, and radiant love. And never, ever,
ever, commiting that which injurs the heart of another -- except by
accident, and then fall all over yourself begging sincere forgiveness.

Burl (who has begged forgiveness on numerous occasions)

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

[end of 2/12/96 session]

---------------------------------------------------------

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 00:19:08 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: `Abdu'l-Baha on Rights

of Divine Civilization*, and thought I would share it with you all.

The passage I quoted from in Persian is on p. 19 of the German edition,
and is translated on p. 14 of the Gail translation.

In Persian it says,

va ya khud-i ta'sis-i qavanin-i `adilih muvafiq-i ahkam-i ilahiyyih
va huquq-i hay'at-i `umumiyyih ra dar taht-i siyanat-i qavviyyih mahfuz
dashtih; in hurriyyat-i huquq-i `umumiyyih-'i afrad-i ahali mubayin va
mughayir-i falah va najah ast?

Literally, this would be as follows:

Or would the very establishment of just laws in harmony with the divine
ordinances, which are the guarantees of human happiness and which have
safeguarded the rights of society under strong protection--would this
liberty in the universal rights of individuals among the people be contrary
or opposed to prosperity and success?

Marzieh has it on p. 14 as follows:

"Would the setting up of just legislation, in accord with the Divine laws
which guarantee the happiness of society and protect the rights of all
mankind and are an impregnable proof against assault--would such laws,
insuring the integrity of the members of society and their equality
before the law, inhibit their prosperity and success?"

Marzieh's translation, it seems to me, gets several things wrong, but
most of all errs in not translating "huqu:q" as "rights."  This is the
*only* accurate translation of this word here.  I cannot understand why
she suppressed the word "rights," which appears twice in a positive sense
in this passage.  Did it have something to do with a general
antiliberal attitude of the 1950s, in which "rights" was a
problematic word?  She also suppresses the word hurriyyat or liberty,
freedom.  She replaces them with passive words such as "integrity" (not
in the original) and `equality before the law' (a phrase wholly absent
here, though not elsewhere in `Abdu'l-Baha's writings).

`Abdu'l-Baha is here arguing that "liberal" rights could be enacted into
civil law (qavanin, sing. qanun refers to civil, not religious law; it is
a loan word into Arabic of `canon') because they were not contrary,
either to the shari`ah/Islamic law, nor to practical success in the world.
The background here is that reformers such as Mirza Yusuf Khan had written
works arguing that the French Declaration of the Rights of Man was
compatible with Islamic law.  Moreover, these reformers, like `Abdu'l-Baha
himself, believed that liberal rights were the secret of success of great
Powers such as England and France (post-1971 France).

cheers    Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 00:52:58 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Defending Jamshed Fozdar!

Jack Coleman,

The problem is, Jack, when it come Buddhism and its history and its
thought you are simply clueless. Let me give you an example.

JC:  > "Wherever there's a creation, there's a Creator. You
can't have a creation without a Creator."  <

Me: "Of course, but then that assumes that the universe is a
creation."

JC: > "Buddha speaks (from modern and probably misinterpreted
texts) of created things." <

Me: "He does? Please show us. I read Pali and can muddle through
with Sanskrit, and the Buddha does not speak of created things."

JC: > 'Really? In the Sutta Pitaka, in Chapter XX, Buddha proclaims:
"All created things perish...All created are grief and pain".' <

Me: 'Do you know what "Chapter XX" of the Sutta
Pitaka is?'

Me: 'Do you know what the Sanskrit/Pali word is for
"created?" Do you know if "created" is an appropriate translation
of whatever word it might be?'

JC: > 'In one of our books, Chapter XX is called "The Way". It
starts out with: "The best of paths is the Eightfold;...".' <

JC: > "The Max Muller translation is used. In another reference to
created things or creatures...." <

First of all we are then, if we are to follow your logic, to assume
because a translator has chosen the word "created" we need to assume
that there is a theological import implied therein, and since you did not
answer the questions put to you it is obvious that do not know what the
word is that is translated as created, nor do you have any idea whether
is an appropriate translation. Further, you simply lack the basic
knowledge of Buddhism. The text you quoted is from Chap 20 of the
Dhammapada, which is a book from the Khuddaka Nikaya of the
Sutta-Pitaka.

Actually, this is a set of very famous verses:

"All created things perish...All created are grief and pain,"

which is in Pali:

_sabbe sankhara anicca...sabbe sankhara dukkha_.

_Sabbe_, plural masculine: all, everything, whole, entire.

_Sankhara_, pl mas. (literally: that which is put together), conditioned,
formed.

In the Samyutta Nikaya III 87 we find:

"Why does one say 'conditions' [_sanhkara_]? Because they condition
[_sankharoti_, san + kar + o, to put together] the conditioned
[_sankhata_, pp of _sankharoti]."

_anicca_, Pl mas: impermanent, not stable.

_dukkha_, pl mas: suffering.

A variation on _sabbe sankhara anicca_ is found both in Pali and
Sanskrit texts (given here in Sanskrit): _anitya vata sankhara utadavyaya
dharminah, utpada hi nirudhyante tesam vyupasamas sukham,"

"Impermanent are the sankharas (conditioned things), it is their nature
to rise and fall, For, having been produced, they are stopped. Their
pacification brings ease." (Conze)

_Sankhara_ is nowhere in the Pali or Buddhist Sanskrit texts used in
terms of "created" as you are suggesting in that we can infer a creator
from the created. Created is not a very good translation of sankhara,
in how the word sankhara is used.

In Pali the word _nimmana_ can carry the translation of creation in
terms of being created by a god, to wit:

"If the pleasure and pain that beings (_satta_) feel are caused the
creative act of a Supreme God [Issara-nimmana-hetu], then the
Niganthas surely must have been created by an evil Supreme God."
MN II 222.

In the DighaNikaya 24 the Buddha states:

"There are some ascetics and brahmins who declare as their doctrine
that all things began with the creation by a god, or Brahma."

And this god is characterized so:

"That Worshipful Brahma, the Great God, the Omnipotent, the
Omniscient, the Organizer, the Protection, the  Creator, the Most
Perfect Ruler, the Designer and Orderer, the Father of All That Have
Been and Shall Be, He by Whom we were created, He is permanent,
Constant, Eternal, Unchanging, and He will remain so for ever and
ever,"

which is a nice characterization of the brahmanical notion of the creator
god one finds in the early brahmanical literature, particularly the
creator god notion that has come down the pike ("There is none other
God but Thee, the Almighty, the Most Exalted, the All-Powerful, the
All-Wise").

JC: > 'You claim Fozdar made mistakes, distorted and fabricated.
Perhaps he made a mistake in grammar on the "Twin Miracles," used
material from Carus as well as other, as you call them, "out-of-date"
references.' <

Mistake in grammar. It is a pretty serious mistake. Take away his
argument that a "Twin miracle will teach the dharma," and the text
involved no longer supports his argument and what he built around that
text collapses. He certainly makes a very big deal out of this text. And
most importantly, it is indicative of the quality of his "scholarship."

On page 177 of BMA he quotes from the Anagatavamsa with the
addition of "of the Perfect Buddha":

"At the time when the Dispensation of the Perfect Buddha is falling into
oblivion, ... a 'miracle' like the Twin-miracle will teach the Dharma."

(The deletion and ellipsis are Fozdar's.) Fozdar comments on this, "The
sense is clear: the Dharma will be taught be taught not by a single
'miracle' (Avatar), nor by two _separate_ 'miracles' ... but by the
'Twin-miracle...." Fozdar states that "the contemporaneous appearance
of Two Avatars," the Twin-miracle, will prevent false claim to
Buddhahood, and by being so unusual, it will demand our full attention.
Fozdar spends the whole of chapters 10, 11, 12, and 13 to establish that,
as announced by the title of chap 14, the Twin-miracle is manifest in the
persons of the Bab and Baha'u'llah.

The full sentence from the Anagatavamsa which Fozdar does actually

"At the time when the Dispensation is falling into (oblivion), all the
relics, coming from every place: from the abode of serpents and the
deva world and the Brahma-world, having gathered together in the space
around the great Bo-tree, having made a Buddha image, and having
performed a 'miracle' like the Twin-miracle, will teach Dhamma."

Parse this sentence: what is the subject, the verb, and the direct object?

"The relics will teach Dhamma."

And never mind that "relics" and "twin-miracle" have very specific
meanings within the Pali literature which Fozdar completely ignores for
his own inventive interpretations, and if we follow Fozdar, who needs
to consider the grammatical structure of the sentence in order find the
true meaning of it? The Twin-miracle will teach the Dharma. And this
from a man who criticizes Buddhists and Buddhist scholars for having
deformed the true teaching of the Buddha.

And further, of this text, the Anagatavamsa, Fozdar states that this is the
"oldest passage" relating the decline of the Dhamma and the advent of
Maitreya "which can be attributed with any certainty to Siddharta [sic]
Himself." (BMA 250, 282) The source for this claim? It can only be
Fozdar's own inventiveness, and certainly not any extant scholarship
which attributes this work to a man named Kassapa around the end of
the 12th Century CE. There is no reason he could not have tracked
down this information.

Material from Carus. The problem with material from Carus is that
Fozdar passed off as Buddhist texts material that Carus very clearly
labeled as "explanatory additions, 'EA'" -- that is, bridge material Carus
wrote. There is no way Fozdar could not have known that what he was
labeled, and since he accurately quote Carus' citations elsewhere where
the texts are legitimate. Fozdar quoted this material and gave it citations
as if it were from the Pali Canon. Outside of the question is the Carus
material an accurate reflection of Buddhist thought (which it is not), it
is a very, very serious ethical problem saying that here is a Buddhist text
that supports my position when it isn't a Buddhist text at all.

> 'as you call them, "out-of-date" references. Since modern
western scholars interpret and translate according to their own
tastes and biases....' <

Generally the tastes and biases are to reflect as accurately as possible
what these texts are saying in the context of when and where there were
said. Over the last 100+ years a great deal has been learned about these
issues that allows scholars and practitioners to better understand what is
being said, and then there is the living tradition which the early scholars
really had little or no contact with. Virtually every source in Carus'
book has been superseded by much better translations.

> "In the absence of any authentically verifiable mechanism to interpret
sayings of the Buddha and also of an infallible mechanism to
interpret such teachings, how "out of date" and misinterpreted are
such. Who is to know which of the successive schools of thought
interpret faultlessly the original meanings and purposes of
Buddha's teachings?" <

So Fozdar, with virtually no knowledge of Buddhism, can the interpret
the Buddhist texts how he wishes, and never mind the Buddhist
traditions? Is that what you are saying?

Me: "The bottom line here is ...you are unwittingly passing off
as being Buddhist texts, thanks to Fozdar, stuff that is not...it
is obvious that you are doing no more than parroting Fozdar. You
have not read the texts in question expect in Fozdar's wretched
books, which are full of distortions."

Thee: > "Now let us talk about the source of our previous quotes. You
go to great lengths, in your recent retort nullifying creation and
a Creator, accusing us of "parroting Fozdar's wretched books" on
these concepts. ...."

Interesting, What I went at great lengths to show, and you are ignoring,
is how Fozdar used a passage from Carus that was very clearly a
distortion of what the original passage stated, and I further showed how
Fozdar concocted a citation for this passage. Interesting that you chosen
to ignore this.

> 'In this [by Edwin A. Burtt] book as well as others we have, the
Buddha refers over and over again to "created things," "creatures," "the
Uncreated," "the Omniscient," "the Absolute," the Self-Existent," "the
Eternal," "the  Supreme," "the Blessed One," "Holy One," "Your
Reverence," "My Lord," etc. Are these phrases all "out-of-date,"
"mistranslated," and "misinterpreted" as well?  Let's be fair!' <

Some of them are poor translations, but for those that aren't, and you
certainly do _not_ seem to be in position to tell, you need to be aware
of their contexts and how they are used. It is not reasonable to assume
that all these words mean the same thing no matter what religion or what
time we are talking about, but it does not seem that your lack of
knowledge will stop you from criticizing my 30 years of involvement
with and study of Buddhism. Let's be fair, indeed.

Me: "There is no god, no creator being talked about here."

Thee: > "Really? This same eminent Buddhist source, Dr. Suzuki,
Professor of Buddhist Philosophy, also seems to disagree with your
atheistic Buddhist notions. In his invited lecture to the Emperor
of Japan, he chose vital doctrines from the various Buddhist sects...."
<

You are dodging the issue. I gave a neat little exegesis of the Udana 80
text, which is the "here" I was very clearly talking about, and you are
simply trying dodge the issue. What Suzuki said or did not say does not
address the "here" I was referring to.

> 'Is this world renown Buddhist scholar, Dr. Suzuki, also
"out-of-date," "mistranslating" and "misinterpreting" the oriental
texts of Buddha too?' <

Actually, yes, out of date. A pioneer in many ways, his work has been
superseded both in this country and in Japan.

That Suzuki employed god talk to illustrate a point does not mean that
he subscribes to a god. Being a good mahayanist he was quite capable,
as a form of skilful means, of using god talk to make a point without it
being a doctrinal statement or an affirmation of what he believed. But
if I had to choose between Suzuki and the 9th century Dharmakirti who
stated belief in a creator god is a mark of crass and witless men as being
a more accurate reflection of the Buddhist attitude towards a god,
Dharmakirti wins hands down.

Thee: > 'Bruce, you never responded to seven other quotes and
discussions on what the Buddha apparently said about "union with
Brahma," "the Awakened, the Omniscient, the Trackless," "synonym
for the Tathagata: Dhamma-body and again Brahma-body, and again
Dhamma-become and again Brahma-become,' <

Because I hadn't gotten around to them, yet. Now, I suppose since you
are using these things to support your position, you can give a careful,
detailed discussion and exegesis of each of them.  So far what we have
seen from Fozdar is eisegesis.

Union with Brahma. This is the Buddha's redefining the Brahmanical
goal, giving it a very different, ethical flavor. There are a number of
texts that discuss this, and as much as the Buddha knew the Brahma
world, so it could be for one who did the practice he outlines, but, as
discourse 97 of the Majjhima Nikaya states, this is a _hina_, lesser,
inferior, goal compared to that of nirvana. It hardly supports a god
notion as you seem to think it does.

As for the other terms. To requote Itivuttaka 57:

"Whoever frees himself from the passions of lust, hatred, and ignorance,
they call him, one who is self developed, made divine (brahmabhuta, lit:
brahma-become), thus-gone (tathagata), awake (buddha), one who has
left fear and hatred, and one who has let go of all."?

Elsewhere the Itivuttaka states: The arahant is he who, the outflows
extinguished, is unfettered from the bond of the sense pleasures and the
bond of becoming...

And the Dhammapada 93 states: "He whose outflows are utterly
extinguished, And who is independent of the basis (for rebirth), And
whose pasture is freedom That is empty and signless, His track is hard
to trace, As that of birds in the sky."

Dhammapada 419: "Who knows in every way the passing away and
rebirth of beings, unattached, well-gone [sugata], awakened [buddha],
That one I [the Buddha] call _brahmana_."

And from Anguttara Nikaya from the Sutta Pitaka: "Come, this is the
Way, this is the course I have followed until, having realized by my
own super-knowledge the matchless plunge into Brahma-faring, I have
made it known. Come you too, follow likewise, so that you also, having
realized by your own super-knowledge the matchless plunge into the
Brahma-faring, may abide in it." AN I 168-69.

The point of all this is that none of these things refer to a god. The
Buddha not infrequently uses the words buddha, tathagata, brahma-
become, sugata (all words that applied to the Buddha) in reference to his
enlightened followers. So whatever argument you make using trackless,
brahma-become, awakened, and so forth, you'll need to also take into
account that words equally refer to the enlightened follower.

As for omniscient, in the earliest texts the Buddha did indeed to state
that he was all-knowing, but only in terms related to the truth of
freedom from suffering. He explicitly denied being all-knowing in terms
of knowing everything and anything.

> 'Other Buddhist sources also seem to disagree with your highly
adverse "impressions" of Jamshed Fozdar.' <

And do you know if the "other Buddhist sources" actually took the time
to track down each quote, to carefully assess what was being said? Do
you think that they would still speak as they do of Fozdar's books if
they knew he was passing off as Buddhist texts material that clearly
wasn't?

Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhi is certainly entitled to his views, and I to
mine, which are based not upon wishful thinking and preconceived idea
that there is a god, but rather upon what the Buddhist texts and the
historical contexts they spoken.

> "such souls as tread the valley of arrogance and pride" <

The arrogance is in Fozdar's assumption that he can tell Buddhists better
what Buddhism and the Buddha is about than they can. And what does
Fozdar base his belief on? Certainly not a careful and respectful study
of the Buddhist texts and the history of Buddhist ideas. You quote a text
concerning "the Universal Mind," but can you tell us what school that
text belongs to? When the text was written and what "Universal Mind"
actually means within the text you are quoting and in the broader context
of the school of Buddhism it belongs to? If not, then is there not a
problem with trying make it support your position. It is a problem you
seem to be having and it is clearly a problem that Fozdar does have.

Bruce B

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 02:54 EST
From: Dariush Lamie <0007368608@mcimail.com>
To: "talisman@indiana.edu"
Subject: Next world

-- [ From: Dariush Lamie * EMC.Ver #2.3 ] --

Dear friends,

This is the near death experiance of "Sayid Mehdi-i Manshadi", who was one of
the devoted believers at the time of Baha'u'llah.

This near death experiance has been written and sent by Sayid Mehdi to
Baha'u'llah. Since, I do not want to bore you, I would summarize it.

Aqa Sayid Mehdi, have several times told his brother Sayid Solayman about his
problem to understand the next world, and the more he digged into it, the more
abstruse and complex he found it. He used to say prayers asking God to help him
understand the next world. Finally, his request was granted and had a near
death experiance. The following is what he wrote down:

I was sleeping one night at home in Tabriz, when I had a near death experiance
at about morning time. I saw that my soul departing from the body and ascended
toward sky, at the same time it was looking down and thinking about the body
that at one time belonged to me. It was a very unusual experiance. I wanted to
go back to my body, but at the same time I wanted to go up and uper. People
down on the earth were starting the burial ceremony and I was watching the
whole thing.

My soul started to ascend higher and higher. Little by little I started to see
the houses down below, and then the streets, gardens..., then upon entering the
next world, I joined a group of souls similar to my station. I personally knew
a few of them previously in the earthly life, I started talking to them and
then went to the presence of a very well respected person. We sat for a while
and had some fruits, it tasted like the fruits of the city of Yazd. Then, I
went to take a walk , I arrived at a river in which I entered and started to
swim. It was a joy that I can not put it in words. it was a wonderful
experiance. I can not find any word to describe my inner feelings.

to be continued....

dariush

=END=

From: Alethinos@aol.com
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 03:24:12 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: `Abdu'l-Baha on Rights

I am not sure how many times this needs to be stated before it is heard: the
issue is not one of whether human rights are a good thing. Nor is it about
the fact that the Rule of Law is also a necessary ingredient in the
evolutionary process of the planet through the Lesser Peace and on into the
Most Great Peace.  Nor is it even that if can ever get the Baha'i community
to actually begin to fulfill the Guardian's vision of America's spiritual
destiny that our *blossoming* will not include a greatly expanded foundation
of natural rights and natural law (big subject and as I promised too long ago
I will follow up on that.)

What is needed is to seperate out the true elements of natural law and
natural rights - those that have rang true throughout the Ages - and most
importantly find real confirmation in the Faith now - from the
socio-political brambles that have grown over, under and through these
concepts over the past few centuries and esp. over the past fifty years or
so.

The issue also is not that rule of law is not a vital and necessary element
in the social evolution of our planet; it is that we are at a stage not where
we can begin, as yet dimly, to look beyond the rule of law. It certainly
cannot be jettesoned yet - but we surely cannot go backward as if the answer
were to be found in excepting even more fervently the social, political,
philosophical and psychological underpinnings for its initial birth into the
*modern* world of the past 350 years.

And the answer cannot be trying to force, in toto, an old world template on
the Baha'i Faith because it is, at least here in America, (due, as has been
repeatedly demonstrated through comparison to the Guardian's writiings on
America) in a state of delayed maturity.

It is not that there are not jewels from our collective history that cannot
be brought into and incorporated within the Cause. If they ring true, (as
human rights certainly does,) in haromony with Baha'u'llah's Message than of
course there will be incorporation. For God's sake it isn't as if Baha'u'llah
just pulled into town and decided to re-invent the wheel!!! Why do you think
we have been blessed with all the incredible achievments of Humanity??

But the World is inevitably moving on toward its destiny. We are in the
*process* of maturing. While we keep the lessons of our past we cannot cling
to those *garments* that will not serve our future and even present needs.

The call here is to explore how to best move ahead. How to best re-ingnite
the Baha'i community. How best to help in mature properly. What is best to
keep and best to cast aside. This has not been done here. Yet. So far it has
been essentially this:

"Here we have a quote x,y, and z from one or more of the Central Figures
talking about how wonderful democracy would be in Persia; how rule of law is
necessary for any counry to really forge ahead etc. Ergo, ex post facto, E
Pluribus Unum and ditto lets accept, wholesale, all of the socio-poltical,
liberal-democratic planks that have been laid out over the past two
centuries."

Anyone saying "whow!" lets examine this stuff  - let's not do some
pig-in-a-poke thing is treated as absolute opponent to the very principles of
natrual rights etc.

Again, when will we begin to work together? And when will we realize that
the answer to the immaturity of the Baha'i community cannot come from an old
world approach of *forcing* by dent of loud and angry voices some cobbled
together *rights* paltform? The problem then in the Faith is the same as it
has ever been in humanity; an acceptance of Augustinian Original Sin. We are
all, in the end, not to be trusted. There will be no fundamental advance of
Humanity to a new plateau of spiritual maturity; there will be no new Heaven
and Earth. Plato's dream that the Day will come when men will not have to
wholly rely on laws and regualtions will never arrive.

Or do we wish to forge ahead, we children of the half light?

jim harrison

Alethinos@aol.com

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 00:58 PST
To: Juan R Cole
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: `Abdu'l-Baha on Rights
Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu

>
> `Abdu'l-Baha
>himself, believed that liberal rights were the secret of success of great
>Powers such as England and France *(post-1971 France).*
>
I always knew the Master was precognitive, but 1971? That's really
pushin' it!   Personally, I always thought the French were simply Nazis with
sauce.

Burl

>

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 10:44:25 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Fwd: Entry by Troops
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Talismanians
There has been requests for a study on a deeper level of spreading the
Faith. I thought this letter that was forwarded to me might be a good
starter.
Kindest Regards
Derek Cockshut
Subject: Entry by Troops

**************************************************************

21 August 1977

Dear Baha'i Friend,
The Universal House of Justice has studied your long letter of 19
May
1977.  With many of your observations it thoroughly agrees;
others, it
believes are founded on erroneous information, on an inaccurate
assessment of the current status of the Baha'i community, or on
misconceptions about the objectives towards which it is working.
The
House of Justice does not have the time which would be required to

formulate a detailed reply to all the various points in your
letter.
It reaffirms, however, the decisions conveyed to your National
Spiritual Assembly in its letter of 2 December 1976, and has

Mankind's response to the Message of Baha'u'llah has been
dangerously,
one might say disastrously, slow.  From the earliest days it has
been
brought to the notice of leaders and scholars, but few of these,
very
few, have rallied to its support.  The most profound and most
widespread response has been from the middle classes and indeed
from
the poor, the unlettered, the deprived and the suffering.

But, as the Guardian's secretary wrote on his behalf on 20 June
1942,

That is perhaps what is most glorious about our present activities
all
over the world, that we, a band not large in numbers, not
possessing
financial backing or the prestige of great names, should, in the
name
of our beloved Faith, be forging ahead at such a pace, and
demonstrating to future and present generations that it is the
God-given qualities of our religion that are raising it up and not
the
transient support of worldly fame and power.  All that will come
later, when it has been made clear beyond the shadow of a doubt
that
what raised aloft the banner of Baha'u'llah was the love,
sacrifice,
and devotion of His humble followers and the change that His
teachings
wrought in their hearts and lives.

Already the situation is changing, and larger numbers of believers
are
occupying positions of eminence and distinction in the world, but,
in
comparison with the overwhelming majority of the Baha'is, they are

still a small handful.  The process of changing the hearts and
lives
is also a gradual one, but while we should strive to hasten it, we

should not let the problems dismay us.  On 5 July 1947 the
Guardian's
secretary wrote on his behalf to an individual believer:

The primary reason for anyone becoming a Baha'i must of course be
because he has come to believe the doctrines, the teachings and
the
Order of Baha'u'llah are the correct thing for this stage in the
world's evolution.  The Baha'is themselves as a body have one
great
advantage:  they are sincerely convinced Baha'u'llah is right;
they
have a plan, and they are trying to follow it.  But to pretend
they
are perfect, that the Baha'is of the future will not be a hundred
times more mature, better balanced, more exemplary in their
conduct,
would be foolish.

The Universal House of Justice is aware of the magnitude of the
problems that the Baha'i communities face, but as the response to
the
Message of Baha'u'llah increases and as the Baha'i community
throughout the world shows its ability to overcome these problems,
the
attention of men and women of every stratum of society will
increasingly be drawn to the Faith.  The most urgent need now  -
so
late is the hour  -  is for the Baha'is to spread the Message,
while
they are still able to do so, to the largest possible number of
their
fellow human beings, simultaneously expanding and consolidating
the
Baha'i community as quickly as they can with the resources at
their
disposal.  As mankind passes through the darkest phase of its
history,
the Baha'i community will have to face not only entry by troops,
which
it is now experiencing, but, before too long, mass conversion.
The first step in the reconstruction of human society is for
individuals to accept Baha'u'llah as the Manifestation of God for
this
age and to begin to strive, as well as they can, to follow His
Teachings in their individual and in their communal lives.
Conversion
is but the first step, yet it is the essential one.  Without it no

amount of expertise or scientifically based knowledge will have a
lasting effect, because the fundamental motivating and sustaining
power will be lacking.
As the Baha'i community grows it will acquire experts in numerous
fields both by Baha'is becoming experts and by experts becoming
Baha'is.  As these experts bring their knowledge and skill to the
service of the community and, even more, as they transform their
various disciplines by bringing to bear upon them the light of the

Divine Teachings, problem after problem now disrupting society
will be
answered.  In such developments they should strive to make the
utmost
use of non-Baha'i resources and should collaborate fully with
non-Baha'is who are working in the same fields.  Such
collaboration
will, in the long run, be of far more benefit than any attempt now
to
treat such scientific endeavours as specifically Baha'i projects
operating under Baha'i institutions and financed by investment of
Baha'i funds.
Paralleling this process, Baha'i institutional life will also be
developing, and as it does so the Assemblies will draw
increasingly
upon scientific and expert knowledge  -  whether of Baha'is or of
non-Baha'is  - to assist in solving the problems of their
communities.
In time great Baha'i institutions of learning, great international
and
national projects for the betterment of human life will be
inaugurated
and flourish.
The Baha'i work for the reconstruction of human society can thus
be
seen to comprise three streams:  the most fundamental is the
of the Word of God, the winning of the allegiance of ever greater
numbers of men and women to the Cause of Baha'u'llah and the
establishment of the Baha'i Administrative Order; concurrent with
this
is the contribution to human advancement and to the progress of
the
Baha'i community made by individual Baha'is in the pursuit of
their
daily work; and then there are the projects and institutions for
human
advancement launched and operated by Baha'i Spiritual Assemblies
as
their resources grow and the range of their activities expands.
It is
for the Universal House of Justice to direct the energies of the
believers in these various channels and to make known what
activities
are timely and have priority.  It considers that the establishment
of
an International Human Development Centre now as a
Baha'i-affiliated
institution would be untimely and ill-advised.
The House of Justice assures you of its prayers for the
confirmation
of your endeavours on behalf of the Faith and in your professional

work.
With loving Baha'i greetings,
For Department of the
Secretariat
cc:  National Spiritual Assembly of
the United States

=END=

From: SFotos@eworld.com
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 02:31:22 -0800
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: souls in the next world

Dear friends,

More thoughts on the next world as I reflect on the untimely death of a great
teacher, mentor, and tireless defender of human rights, Dr. Charlene Sato.

Shortly after the Japan Annual Convention in 1993, our wonderful National
Office manager, Brenda Watts died very suddenly.  Over the next few months,
many of us had dreams of Brenda. In one dream, the dreamer asked her how it
was to be dead, how it felt to be in the Abha Kingdom.  Brenda, who was
always very busy, said that it was very busy in the Kingdom, as well.

Hatcher's wonderful book, _The Purpose of Physical Reality_  treats this
theme in very insightful ways, arguing that our existence is a continuum
rather than a series of plateaus.  Maybe we keep on with our work-- doing in
reality there what we did as a reflection here, praying, teaching, serving.
What did 'Abdu'l-Baha mean (while speaking about construction of the Temple)
when he said that the Temple was already built in the Kingdom? Does this mean
that things are built there which are reflected here? Are we the builders?
Some of the Writings indicate that arts and sciences are brought into the
physical reality through the mediation of illumined souls. What does that
mean? Is this our work too?

And, although I hate to say it on this forum,  the Supreme Concourse
certainly sounds like an Administrative body to me!!!

Best,
Sandy Fotos

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 12:38:37 +0100
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: lundberg@algonet.se (Zaid Lundberg)
Subject: Questions on Translating Original Texts

Dear Talismanians,

I have four questions regarding the translations of original
(Arabic/Persian) texts:

1) According to Craig A. Volker "most translations into other languages are
now done from Shoghi Effendi's English translations, rather than from the
Arabic and Persian originals" (Translating the Baha'i Writings, JBS, vol.2
no.2, 1989-90, p. 70). If this is so, doesn't it give the English language a
unique status in the work of translation in the global Baha'i community? Are
there any statistics on this?

2) Is there any textual basis that translations into other languages (other
than English) must have Shoghi Effendi's (or other authorized translator's)
translations as their basis? If so, what's the reference?

3) What's the policies regarding translating directly from the
(Arabic/Persian) originals?

4) Let's assume that English is the basis for most translations, into which
language are the writings mostly translated into? Let us for the argument's
sake assume that it is Hindi, then this would imply three levels of the
writings: I) Arabic/Persian (original text), II) English (1st level
interpretation), and finally, III) Hindi (2nd level interpretation). My
question here is what level is mostly read by the global Baha'i community? I
assume that it is II) English but are there any statistics on this?

Shal-OM Shanti Shanti

Zaid Lundberg

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Mon, 12 Feb 1996 12:42:21 EST
Subject:       UN not for US

The articles of Universal Declarations of Human Rights that are deemed
incompatible with the U.S. economic philosophy. Thus not ratified???
Or, incorporated into the U.S. Constitutional Amendments???

Article 23
(1) Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment,
to just and favourable conditions of work and protection against
unemployment.
(2) Eveyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay
for equal work.
(3) Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable
remuneration ensuring for himself and his family an existence worthy
of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of
social protection.
(4) Everyone has the right to form and to join trade unions for the
protection of his interests.

Article 24
Everyone has the right to rest and leisure, including reasonable
limitation of working hours and periodic holidays with pay.

Article 25

(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the
health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food,
clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and
the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness,
disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in
circumstances beyond his control.

(2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and
assistance. All children whether born in or out of wedlock, shall
enjoy the s ame social protection.

"These rights belong to you.
Familiarize yourself with them. Help to promote and defend them for
yourself as well as for your fellow human beings" ---United Nations
*************************************
POEM

Words are free,
work is not.
Thoughts are free.
Acts are not.
Idols are plenty,
love is naught.
Sacrifice my shares,
of the big pot?
Say! for what?
Not me! Not you!
Then, who?
We know not!
I work two jobs,
and kill my butt!
Huh! so can you, bud!!
This is love.
For money that is.
Good luck pal.

--quanta

=END=

To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 14:15:49 EST
Subject: unsubsribe ak@insurance.ifvb.uni-hannover.de

Dear Baha'i-friends
I would like to unsubsribe form talisman due to the large amount of

=END=

Date: 13 Feb 96 08:46:44 EST
From: Steven Scholl <73613.2712@compuserve.com>
To: Talisman
Subject: New Book from White Cloud

Learned Friends,

White Cloud Press has just released its latest book, SAGA: BEST NEW WRITINGS ON
MYTHOLOGY edited by Jonathan Young. The book includes 19 essays and interviews
with some of the finest mythologists, storytellers, and poets of our time.
Contributors include
Thomas Moore on "Developing a Mythic Sensiblity"
James Hillman on "The Queston of Images"
Jean Shinoda Bolen "On Pilgrimage"
Robert Bly on "Story Food"
Marion Woodman on "Stepping Over the Threshold: Into the Black Hole at the
Center of Self"
David Miller on "The Fire is in the Mind" (excerpts previously posted on
Talisman re: scholars and plumbers)
Allan Chinen on "Adult Liberation and the Mature Trickster"
Murray Stein on "Hermes and the Creation of Space"
Toni Morrison on "Language Alone Protects Us"

Other contributors include Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Christine Downing, Rita Dove,
Ursuala Le Guin, Alexander Eliot, and John Matthews. It is a wonderful book in
the tradition of Joseph Campbell in bringing home the power of myth in our lives
and showing us pathways into a mythic sensiblity.

Cost is \$14.95 plus shipping. Talismaniancs can take advantage of a 15%
discount.

We also have a limited number of slightly scuffed copies of our other titles
that are on sale at 30% off the cover price. These are all in good shape and
just have some slight mars on the covers. Available titles are:

Creation and the Timeless Order of Things: Essays in Islamic Mystical Philosophy
by Toshihiko Izutsu (Retail \$16; Sale price \$11.20)

The Green Sea of Heaven: Fifty ghazals from the Diwan of Hafiz (Retail \$14.95,
Sale price \$10.47)

The Beloved by Kahlil Gibran, translated by John Walbridge (Retail \$17, Sale
\$11.90)

The Vision by Kahlil Gibran, translated by Juan Cole ((Retail \$17, Sale \$11.90)

Spirit Brides by Kahlil Gibran, translated by Juan Cole ((Retail \$16, Sale
\$11.20)

The Storm by Kahlil Gibran, translated by John Walbridge (Retail \$18, Sale
\$12.60)

Contact me for further details,

Steve Scholl

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Tue, 13 Feb 1996 09:29:33 EST
Subject:       Re: Questions on Translating Original Texts

Dear Mr. Lundberg,

Your question regarding the translations from the original into other
languages is something I am very interested in also. For, I am in the
process of comparing the Tablets of Baha'u'llah translated directly
from the the original into Turkish with those translated directly
from the original into English. I found many differences. I shared
only two minor ones in the 'Tablet of Medicine'. The for me the
question now is, do I drink fluids with a full stomach throughout the
day and
stop drinking just before going to bed? The same questions was
regarding exercise which is not even mentioned in the Turkish
translation. So, should I consider this a cultural interpretation due
to the fact that physical exercise is something that the
Westerners are excessively preoccupied with. Or, did Mr. Inan
omitted the word "exercise" because of his cultural reasons.

I don't know. These may seem minor matters to ponder upon. But, I
also have seen some major ones in other Tablets which I am not ready
to share yet. Here is an example of your concern regarding
translations from the original into English then, English becoming
the standard for translation into other languages. It puts a great
burden on our scholars on this forum, whose works we greatly
appreciate. I shoddered to think of "intellectual imperialism".

lovingly,
Quanta

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Tue, 13 Feb 1996 09:47:35 EST
Subject:       hypothetical consequences

Cont...
Translations of the Holy Tablets into other languages from English
versus from the original text.

HYPOTHETICAL SCENARIO

Person X is a large shareholder of a multinational large beverage
company and an owner of a Health & Exercise facility.
He/she is also multilingual person who translates important documents
from one language into another. One of them being the Tablet of
Medicine where it is stated that "do not drink with a full stomach"
Does this mean while eating? If, so, will the consumption of beverage
be significantly lowered, if people began to apply this advice.
I hope you get the picture. I became very cynical with human
motivations in this materialistic culture. I hope you understand.

lovingly,
Quanta

=END=

To: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Re: 'New' vs 'Old' World Order
Date: 13 Feb 1996 08:19:04 GMT

Terry -
I agree that the New World Order is not the Faith or it's administration.
Shoghi Effendi himself stated that the Faith is 'a pattern for future
society'.  And I believe that the basis for this order will be the spiritual
principles enunciated in the Writings.

As to Marks response - he is describing the sociological process for the
development of a new order based on the Covenant.   While there is a
difference in our terminology and emphasis, I think the three of us are
gnerally in agreement.

Don C

Don C

He who believes himself spiritual proves he is not - The Cloud of Unknowing

=END=

To: Alethinos@aol.com
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Re: `Abdu'l-Baha on Rights
Date: 13 Feb 1996 08:18:42 GMT

Jim -
Once again I think you have bro't up some very important issues.

From my perspective, part of the question that needs to be resolved is the
relationship between rights as a principal and rights as a law.  It seems
obvious to me that the tenor of the Writings is to focus on the spiritual
principals that form the basis for a stated or unstated law of rights.

I think a prime example of the failure of a policy of defining rights by law
is the anti-racism campaign in the U.S.  In spite of all the laws that have
been passed in the last 30 years, there has not been a dramatic decline in
racism.  It seems obvious to me that the reason for this is that while
certain blatant expressions of racism have been eliminated, there has been no
increase in the degree of unity, the central principal of the Faith.  There
is no way that any administrative unit, religious or secular, can legislate
unity because it can result only from the internalization of a spiritual
principal.

I do not see how there can be any realization of rights until the world quits
focusing on the limits of aceptable behavior and begins focusing on
developing the spiritual principals in themselves that are extolled in the
Writings.

Don C

He who believes himself spiritual proves he is not - The Cloud of Unknowing

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 16:40:47 +0100 (MET)
Subject: Qiblih - WWW page
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Qiblih direction:

the web page assumes that the 'direction' for prayer is the direction
in which an airplane pilot would *first* go, on taking off from some
point and heading for the Qiblih. Great circle, or shortest-distance routes
between points at different lattitudes have a curve away from the equator.
A great circle track which crosses the equator has a double curve - an
's' shape. So, for most places, the first take-off direction (or compass
course, for a boat) is not to point oneself directly at the final destination.
In fact an aeroplane would only point directly at its final goal at the very
end of the journey.
But do we think of as our prayers as taking off, and making successive
changes in compass course along the way in order to minimize distance
travelled and fuel consumption? Or do we think of them as gravitating
to the pole of Bahji as a compass needle points, quivering, to the North.
If the latter, then distance travelled is irrelevant. We are *turning* to
God, not engaging in astral travel.
From anywhere on earth, the shortest-distance route to the North Pole,
or the South, is a straight line with a constant compass bearing and
no mid-course corrections. If Bahji is the lodestone, and our hearts the
seeking needle, the only thing we need concern ourselves with is ensuring
that nothing else is placed so near the compass as to cause deviation.
In boats there is a problem with large masses of metal, such as the motor
or the store of tinned goods or the spanner you forgot, which cause the
compass needle to deviate. Large masses of metal - especially shiny metals -
seem to have the same effect on the heart, and should be kept at a suitable
distance.

Sen

PS> I don't have access to the web. Could the person who posted
this web page on talisman forward my response to the page owner?
Tks

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sen McGlinn                           ph: 31-43-3216854
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: "Mark A. Foster"
Subject: New vs. Old World Order
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 09:52:57 -0600 (CST)

To: talisman@indiana.edu

Hi, Terry -

Sorry for any confusion in my previous posting. I will comment on
what I wrote. Hopefully, this message will make what I said clearer.
And, of course, everything I write is based only on my present
understandings.

M >As I see it, the New Order is the Covenant of Baha'u'llah, the Love
M >of God, the Will of God, or divine Law. It is the divinely cohesive
M >pattern for human relationships. That divine ordering of creation is
M >destined, IMO, as we move closer to the Golden Age, to be progressively
M >manifested in the world of human affairs.

What I meant is that the New Order, the World Order of Baha'u'llah
(the Kingdom of God on Earth), emanates from Baha'u'llah's Own nature.
This "Order" is divine Law (the Will or Covenant of God as it has been
revealed to us). It is the ordering (loving) principle of creation.
Previous ordering (unity-in-diversity) principles established familial,
tribal, city-state, and national organization. Although each of these
stages of "order" were, as I see it, structural (meaningful) principles
of human relationships (all existing primarily in the spiritual world),
the *new* World Order is the fulfillment, or the universalization (the
resurrection), of them all.

M >OTOH, the Baha'i Community is the ecclesia (spiritual in-gathering)
M >of the new age. It is represented in a community increasingly animated
M >by the power of the Covenant (the animating principle of the World Order
M >of Baha'u'llah, i.e., the spirit of faith).

Here, I was saying that the Baha'i world community itself is a
global ecclesia (which can be roughly translated from the Greek as an
"in-gathering"). The Authorized Version (what we call, here in the
States, the King James Version) of the Bible renders "ecclesia" as
"church." However, the Greek does not refer to a church building but to
a congregation or an assembly; and, in this age, that global assembly is
the body of humanity which will increasingly reflect the divine ordering
principle (the World Order of Baha'u'llah) from the Kingdom revealed
(the spiritual center of this world).

M >Finally, the Revelation of Baha'u'llah is, IMO, the manifestation of
M >the Kingdom of Concealment (the world of the Divine Essence) as the
M >Kingdom of Revelation (the Greater World). Divine Revelation, from my
M >POV, is the Word of God, the Knowledge of God, or the divine Logos which
M >is fully embodied in the Perfect Man.

In this case, I meant that divine Revelation, as I understand it, is
the Word of God. And, by the Word of God (the logical conversation of
God - or Logos), I was referring to the divine Knowledge which appears
in the Manifestation - not to the rational-level emanation of that Word
as Sacred Text. IMHO, the Kingdom of Concealment, at least on one level,
is the condition of Deity - the Kingdom of the Divine Essence. Likewise,
I understand the Kingdom of Revelation to be the Greater World - the
Kingdom of Divine Manifestation. IOW, the condition of ProphetHOOD is
the Manifestation of *God*.

To the Light,

Mark (Foster)

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 11:12:03 -0500 (EST)
From: Richard Vernon Hollinger
To: "Don R. Calkins"
Cc: Alethinos@aol.com, talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Re: `Abdu'l-Baha on Rights

On 13 Feb 1996, Don R. Calkins wrote:

> I think a prime example of the failure of a policy of defining rights by law
> is the anti-racism campaign in the U.S.  In spite of all the laws that have
> been passed in the last 30 years, there has not been a dramatic decline in
> racism.

While I would agree that there are profound limits to the changes that
can be brought about by legislation, and that the Baha'i teachings
advocate a deeper level of social change, I don't think the affect of
positive legislation should be ignored.  Civil-rights leglislation
the acceptable public standard of behavior.  And it actually did change
the minds of some people concerning racial integration.  While, there
is truth to the maxim: "you can't legislate morality," it is also an
overstatement.  Legislation is an integral part of the process of personal
and social change that Baha'is are trying to initiate.  Although it does not
represent the totality of the Baha'i
program for social change, legislation is, I think, an essential part of
that
program and is linked to those other processes more closely than it might
appear on the surface.

Civil-rights legislation has not brought about the elimination of
prejudice, and it probably cannot, but equality before the law and equal
opportunities are certainly part of the creation of a just society, and
they are conditions that will probably in themselves be conducive to the
mitigation of certain forms of prejudice.

The Baha'i program for social change invovles both individual
transformation and structural change, and I don't think the importance of
either should be minimized.  For example, Baha'u'llah advocated certain
measures to
minimize the possibility of war, and I do not think any amount of
establihsing peace in the hearts of individuals would, in itself,
displace these measures as safeguards against the carnage of war.  The
dilemna is that even in a virtuous society, perhaps *especially* in a
society composed mostly of virtous people, there have to be societal
structures and regulations to safeguard the rights of individuals and
groups.  Otherwise, those who are willing to go to any lengths to
obtain power or to acheive their objectives, those who will not respect
rights of others, will, from time to time, be able to acheive dominance.
History is replete with examples of this.

Hence, while I am in no way minimizing the importance of personal
transformation in the creation of a Baha'i society or in the implementation
of the Baha'i ideals--indeed, I quite agree with the importance of this--I
would caution
that this, by itself, will not acheive the goals envisioned by Baha'u'llah.

Richard Hollinger

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 11:34:11 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: Burl Barer
Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: `Abdu'l-Baha on Rights

Burl:  Thanks for catching that; it should have read after 1871, that is,
with the establishment of the Third Republic in France.  Allons enfants
de la patri-i-e . . .

cheers   Juan

On Tue, 13 Feb 1996, Burl Barer wrote:

> >
> > `Abdu'l-Baha
> >himself, believed that liberal rights were the secret of success of great
> >Powers such as England and France *(post-1971 France).*
> >
>    I always knew the Master was precognitive, but 1971? That's really
> pushin' it!   Personally, I always thought the French were simply Nazis with
> sauce.
>
> Burl
>
>
> >
>
> *******************************************************
>  MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
> Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
> ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
> ********************************************************
>
>

=END=

From: dann.may@sandbox.telepath.com
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 10:26:21 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Daughter's poem
To: talisman@indiana.edu

As a proud father, I have to announce the following:

My daughter's (Toni Robison-May) picture and poem from the recent youth
conference that was held in Dallas are found on page 16 of the Feb. 7th
edition of _The American Baha'i_.

Warmest greetings, Dann May, Philosophy, OK City Univ.
---
* WR 1.32 # 669 * A teacher always is the prophet of the true God. Dewey

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 10:18:15 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Jim Nelson on Law, Rights, Due Process
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Steven Scholl" <73613.2712@compuserve.com>,
"Talisman"

>Now the obvious question to ask is when will the Baha'i community internalize
>what it advocates in international forums as being good, just and true? As
>has
>been advocated by many before me here on Talisman, we have a wonderful start
>with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It is seems that if US NSA
>members speaking in an official capacity endorse freedom of thought,
>expression
>and action, due process, and the rule of law as universal rights, then such
>rights must apply within the Baha'i community or we are deceiving the
>world and

Dear Steve,

Though I agree with everything you say, in principle,  I am not aware of
your grievances.  It seems that their are those on this forum that claim
they have all of the right on their side.  But I have run into a catch
22--they also say that cannot detail their grievances because they would
lose their voting rights.  That's quite possible as the administrative
order--even from the Master does not encourge--on principle, criticism of
the institutions. Part of the reasoning as I have understood it (correct
me If I am wrong--and please don't think I am attempting to belittle your
view or even oppose it) is that we cannot start conducting ourselves
according to the Baha'i way LATER when people have risen to a level of
civilization that would permit souch a thing.  In my view *Justice* is in
fact more than a right--it is the very foundation of existence.  "The
best beloved of all things in My sight is Justice..."  (Arabic Hidden
Words #2 )  The structure/proceedure for obtainance of justice seems to
be the issue at hand, and the efficacy of a formula for redress is being
debated.  Baha'u'llah asserts:

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)

I bring this up because timeliness I believe is an element at issue and
also the capacity of the believers at this time, not the knowledge of the
learned.  Another important point in my view is the difference between
not synonymous with government, although, it is treated as if it was in
the discussion.  Modern notions of administration are concerned more with
"management techniques"  ethics in a group conduct mode and, the
efficacious execution of goal oriented affairs, than issues of civics
where the discussion up to now has been stymied.  The Baha'i
Administration is not a legal body as a Baha'i Government would be.
Baha'i government would be charged with the protection of criminal
rights, protections under the law, and so forth.  The United Nations is
the *Defacto* Baha'i Government.  There is nothing I have read so far
that implies Baha'i Administrative Institutions will become the world
government of the future.  Neither are the Baha'i Institutions immune
from acting in a just manner.  They are subject to a vote every spring as
Juan so colorfully pointed out.  Hopefully, more enlightened delegates,
if the need be found, and God wills it;  will be elected to convention.
More than this I do not believe would be seemly or neccesary. Baha'u'llah
in His wisdom has lovingly and graciously said:

"Adorn thyself with My character, in such wise
that should anyone treat thee unjustly thou wouldst take no heed of
him, nor oppose him. "    (Surah of the Blood)

The friends are arguing that the blind application of this principle is a
recipe for disaster.  Yet the return of good for evil can never be
accomplished by the blind.  Far from it.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 11:48:15 -0500
To: mfoster@tyrell.net
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: New vs. Old World Order

Dear , dear,  Mark ,
God  bless you !
You should see me sitting here laughing . :) :) :)   You are so patient
!  One of these days I will figure out how to translate all this into
categories that I understand .  If I have trouble with your conceptualizing
and translating it imagine how difficult it would be for me to learn Arabic !
Now we know why I have n't tackled the primary languages.

It is a little clearer than before . It is so humorous me trying to
grasp what you are saying , staring at the computer screen , reading each
phrase slowly and then going back and reading again . I stop myself and smile
and say  "ok Terry now repeat back to me what Mark said and I go - well now
lets see ...  blank . . . and then I laugh at my own inability to understand.

be patient though - one of these days I will get it .  Nima should bridge
this to Ibn Arabi language for me and that might help .

warmest regards ,
terry

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 12:24:54 -0500 (EST)
From: Juan R Cole
To: Zaid Lundberg
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Questions on Translating Original Texts

Zaid:

I think the current policy of making translators into other languages use
the English text as their basis rather than the original should be
rethought.  It is an example of an attempt to achieve consistency and
conformity where these probably cannot in any case be achieved, and where
the attempt is unwise.  For one thing, German and Hindi translators would
be compelled to carry over sloppy or mistaken translations!

You may be interested to know that translators do not always abide by
this rule.  A translator of the texts in India into a regional language
once told me that he had studied Persian as a young man, and that he
employed the Persian text in his translations, though he looked at the
English, as well.

Unfortunately, this sort of rule has been made for bureaucratic
considerations, without any consultation of professional academics and
translators.

cheers   Juan Cole, History, University of Michigan

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Tue, 13 Feb 1996 12:07:11 EST
Subject:       Near death experience

When the tools of perceiving physical reality and tools of functioning
within the physical realm cease to exist, how can we subjectively
experience the world in actions such as eating, drinking, swimming
etc. etc. etc. after death? I can somewhat imagine being an observer
of physical reality
during a coma and even subjectively being a part of the physical
world. But, I have  difficulty understanding life, after death in
terms of the physical world. I always had a hard time with the
concepts of Heaven and huries who served men in Paradise too.
However, those whose documented experiences  relate only a surge
of light and incredible sense of peace and tranquillity, that is
something entirely different from eating and drinking etc., and it is
more believeable on my part. My preference would be absolute
nothingness and becoming part of that Light like a water molecule is
part of the ocean. I dream that nothing of this world will be a

lovingly,
quanta

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 11:49:30 -0600 (CST)
From: "Mark A. Foster, Ph.D., Sociologist of Religion"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Order

Dear Terry -

Thank you for your gentle note. I realize that the terms I use, or maybe
the way I use them, are somewhat different from the norm. Actually, many
of them come from the materials I read, while a new Baha'i, from Marian
Lippitt and Henry Weil. Their approaches, along with those of my beloved
teacher, Elizabeth Thomas, framed the way I view reality. What I try to
do, in order to compensate and hopefully make it an easier read, is to
put alternate terms in parentheses, but I can see how my style may be
confusing at times.

I do appreciate your feedback, however. It makes me conscious of the need
to further fine tune my delivery.

To the Light,

Mark (Foster)

=END=

Subject: Re: Qiblih - WWW page
To: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 12:37:53 -0500 (EST)
From: "Donald Zhang Osborn"
Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu

>    But do we think of as our prayers as taking off, and making successive
> changes in compass course along the way in order to minimize distance
> travelled and fuel consumption? Or do we think of them as gravitating
> to the pole of Bahji as a compass needle points, quivering, to the North.
> If the latter, then distance travelled is irrelevant. We are *turning* to
> God, not engaging in astral travel.
>    From anywhere on earth, the shortest-distance route to the North Pole,
> or the South, is a straight line with a constant compass bearing and
> no mid-course corrections. If Bahji is the lodestone, and our hearts the
> seeking needle, the only thing we need concern ourselves with is ensuring
> that nothing else is placed so near the compass as to cause deviation.

Allah'u'Abha Sen!  I've had trouble with this too.  Here's how I understand it:
There are no straight lines unless they go through the earth or out into space
(unless one is speaking of line of sight very close to a very close object).
This is, of course, because we live on a sphere--every distance between two
points on the surface of a sphere is in fact an arc.  I try to imagine the
situation this way:  1) consider straight lines radiating out from the Qiblih
on a plane tangential to the earth, 2) wrap those lines around the planet so
they meet at a spot on the opposite side of the globe.  It is along these lines
we direct our obligatory prayers.  If one were to take a globe with those lines
on it and stretch it out on one or another flat projection, the lines would
appear to be curved or even (I think) S-shaped.

The compass model makes sense too (aside from having the virtue of being more
poetic) but as I understand it, if one moved along one of those imaginary lines
(which are like longitude lines) with one's "spiritual compass" in one hand and
a physical compass in the other, the former would stay steady but the latter

A globe & a piece of string might also enable one to figure this out (& tell
me if this is just a vain imagining).

Don Osborn  osborndo@pilot.msu.edu

=END=

From: "Eric D. Pierce"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Tue, 13 Feb 1996 09:40:02 PST8PDT
Subject:       Re: Questions on Translating Original Texts

Greetings Blessed Ones,

Zaid, thanks for the interesting questions. I'm no expert,
but wanted to mention that I was surprised when I asked
some generally knowledgeable Spanish/Catalan Baha'is about
translations of Baha'i writings into Spanish and Catala, and
found that most are from the "official" English translations,
not from the original (Persian/Arabic) languages! Apparently
there are databases (or manual lookup tables) of translation
terms based on the Guardian's work, so there is possibly
somewhat of a "cookie cutter" (or standardised) approach
based on previous translations.

I was concerned that Catala translations were from Persian/
Arabic into Spanish and then into Catala (use of Spanish being
a politically sensitive matter amongst some nationalist
Catalans), but they are from Persian/Arabic into English then
into Catala. Of course most of the educated and intellectual
Catalan "politicized" classes have a great deal of favorable
exposure to English, and feel favorably disposed to Brits and
Yanks due to common "mercantile" and other cultural traits.
They generally despise Castillian culture, and make a point of
not using Spanish, and refer to Catalunya as being "temporarily"
occupied by Madrid for the last 200+ years!

I would assume this situation with translations of Baha'i texts
is primarily a practical matter, as it is more difficult to find
and manage experts and do quality control for translations from
Persian/Arabic into the multitude of other languages, whereas
going from English into the others is not as difficult since
English is somewhat of a de facto global language, and is
probably the most frequently used "common language" amongst

It will be interesting to see if future retranslations are done
directly from the Persian/Arabic into various languages as the
scholarly resources and capabilities in various national Baha'i
communities become more fully developed and can be applied to
this issue.

Also, I suspect that using english as a common translation base
may have a (unintentional?) "political" aspect related to the
process of "westernizing" the Faith for teaching purposes. On
the other hand, the absolutely tremendous breadth and depth of
an internationalized British post-imperial scholarship, and its
possible influences on the Guardian shouldn't be dismissed.

Any feedback or corrections are appreciated,

EP

> Date sent:      Tue, 13 Feb 1996 12:38:37 +0100
> To:             talisman@indiana.edu
> From:           lundberg@algonet.se (Zaid Lundberg)
> Subject:        Questions on Translating Original Texts

> Dear Talismanians,
>
> I have four questions regarding the translations of original
> (Arabic/Persian) texts:
>
> 1) According to Craig A. Volker "most translations into other languages are
> now done from Shoghi Effendi's English translations, rather than from the
> Arabic and Persian originals" (Translating the Baha'i Writings, JBS, vol.2
> no.2, 1989-90, p. 70). If this is so, doesn't it give the English language a
> unique status in the work of translation in the global Baha'i community? Are
> there any statistics on this?
...snip

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 09:37:33 -0800
To: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer), "Richard C. Logan"
From: margreet@margreet.seanet.com (Marguerite K. Gipson)
Subject: Re: Genders Smenders
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

Thank you Burl...    You hit the nail right on the head.  This is what I was
trying to say a while  back, but guess it was not that clear.  Thanks for
that bit of clarity.  We all have tests, ---gads, I am in over my head now
with them LITTLE  *b's*  but not past our limits,  Oh ya!  just watch the
grey hair grow... LOL LOL   but we have the prayers as our soothing waters
to calm the soul, and to allow our minds a bit of peace.

warmly, Margreet

At 08:38 PM 2/11/96 PST, Burl Barer wrote:
>>>Richard Said:
>
>>I feel it is the duty of every Baha'i to treat "Gay bashing" as
>>unacceptable and that we should ask understanding and acceptance from our
>>fellow Baha'is and others on the behalf of our Gay and Lesbian brothers
>>and sister as an article of Baha'i behavior.
>
>Burl agrees:
>   And that is *exactly* what Shoghi Effendi and the UHJ have asked us
>repeatedly to do.   My wife lived for several years in a country where there
>were two homosexuals on the NSA.  It was no "secret" that they were
>homosexuals, but rather -- "so, that is Mr. so and so's test, may God assist
>him with his tests and he does me with mine" and that was that. Neither
>gentleman's behaviour was immoral nor were they a "problem" -- rather they
>served the Faith with distinction.  I think America has more of a "problem"
>with other people's tests than elsewhere.  I have enough problems with my
>tests, without taking other's for them!
>
>Burl
>
>
>>
>>
>
>*******************************************************
> MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
>Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
>ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
>********************************************************
>

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Tue, 13 Feb 1996 13:03:22 EST
Subject:       UN documents on web

I received notes regarding the UN articles on Human Rights not being
accesible. I have no idea why with the exceptions that the server
differences may be the cause. However, you can search those documents
by typing "Human Rights" "United Nations" or, Universal Declarations
of Human Rights. Then search under social, economic cultural treaties.

My conclusion is that we have democracy and freedom of speech, but,
hypocracy in economic justice. As I indicated on many occasions in
papers and presentations. The freedoms to speak to God and with
humans is more easily given than the freedoms to economic security &
justice, This is after all a materialistic, capitalistic and
libertarian system fooling the world with beliefs of FREEDOM!

POLITICAL DEMOCRACY! ECONOMIC HYPOCRACY!

take care,
quanta

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 11:52:01 -0600 (CST)
Message-Id: <199602131752.LAA07757@mailhost.onramp.net>
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Alison & Steve Marshall" ,
"Talisman" ,
"Bruce Burrill"

Dear Alison and Steve,

I have given much thought to your request for Mr. Fozdar's address and I
find I must decline;  and I will give you my reasons.  I cannot see that
Mr. Fozdar's books are so wayward as to neccesitate intervention on my
part or yours.  The supression of scholarship is something I do not
accord with,  though I haven't taken it upon myself to question the
doings of any national in this regard.  I believe an accociation of
Baha'i scholars should draw up a voluntary code of scholarly ethics and
methods rooted in the Teachings and mnake it their business to
internalize and live within them. Thus if I don't agree with the
suppression of those whom I disagree with I can hardly be asked to
participate in the suppression of one who I owe much of my early
deepening as a Baha'i to.

Mr. Bruce Burrill, a very serious Buddhist, and scholar made charges
against Mr. Fozdar, that involved his personal honor, and in my estimate,
these charges were scholarly unchivalrous under the circumstances. That
aside--in a metaphorical manner--as one gentleman to another--I was
picking up the gauntlet for Mr. Fozdar and offering to supply the where
abouts of Mr. Fozdar, in the sense of a healthy scholarly exchange.  Now,
I even doubt the wisdom of that.  I should have never offered his
personal address without his permission.  In the heat of the moment I
acted most unwisely!

On another note I believe that Mr. Burrill has misjudged Mr. Fozdar and
would find him one of the most delightful creatures on this planet!  Mr.
Fozdar is Talsiman!  I have never known a more open-minded individual and
more dedicated seeker after the truth.  His frankness and maverick
attitude are the stuff of legend in informed Baha'i circles.  His sense
of humor is more irreverent than any solid Baha'i than I know.  Fighting
the battle of icon breaking is an ethic with him.  He of course is very
imperfect, as, are we all.

But I must say Bruce that your reaction to his scholarship and motive
are off the mark.  Mr. Fozdar is in no way attempting to do a hatchet job
on Buddhism--Mr. Fozdar is a champion of Buddhism.  Because of his
comfortableness with Buddhist culture and language he appears very
radical in his understanding of the Baha'i faith.  His purpose has been
in my view--to set aside the cultural and liguistic differences between
the Aryan and Semetic discourse and attempt to show that the subject of
"Truth" which in my estimate is fundamental to Buddhist discourse, is the
same for all religious adherents.  I make no pretence to a scholarly
understanding of Buddhism, though, I have read quite a bit about it and
understand the emphasis of the various schools.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 08:46:37 -0900
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Boring Feast

This appeared on another list, but I thought it might be of some interest on
Talisman.

Respectfully,

Arsalan

____________________________________________________________________________
________
Marcus writes:

Disclaimer #1
I know this isn't SED but its 5:30 am and I haven't offended anyone yet today,
of course this isn't my intention but I'm hungry and to quote Bob Marley, "a
hungry man is an angry man"  (actually a good SED quote)

Disclaimer #2
I would also add that we in the west indies are not so hung up on race.  we are
not afraid to describe people by their colour.  We are a diverse mixture of
shades and races and it is practical to use colour as a decriptor.  That yellow
mann, that shabin (blue eyed, red haired girl) I think one of the hardest ting
for a west indian to deal with is that when traveling in america, any one with
just a "touch of the tar brush" is cosidered "black".  (they can't be african
american because they ain't american)

Anyway thats not what I'm writing about.  Of course  I get more letters
post scripts and disclaimers then the body subjects.

On Wed, 7 Feb 1996, a wonderful person wrote:

>When we try to do things to
>attract non-Bahai's with activities that bore even the Baha'is, it is time
>for refocusing.

I love it.  Today I address the subject of Feast

The local community where I reside is top heavy with white US pioneers. (It
being the capital city) Actually thats not quite true, on the membership rolls
there are lots of St. Lucians, they just never come around.  Anyway the old
white people think Feast is supposed to be made up of endless, long readings
that go on forever.  I don't know about you guys but I have a hard time
understanding the writings when I read them.  I usually go into zone land when
they are read aloud.  Add to this the fact that they (the old white merkan
pioneers) (who I truely love dearly) don't want the locals to read because they
don't read so well or loud enough.  Add to this the confusion caused by my 4
1/2
and 2 1/2 year old who are getting bored, no singing, usually no music and
refreshments so laced with chemical additives that they qualify as a super fund
site (an american illusion for you yankees) and you can imagine how refreshed I
I am by the end of Feast.

Until we can offer the non Baha'i community at large something better than what
they already have we will fall far short of attracting  masses of people to His
Cause.   Here in St. Lucia church is nice.  People spend all day Saturday at
the
7 day church.  Their community life is strong.  So to with other non-roman
catholic churches that have grown strong over the past three decades.  I
like to
think that those people who left the catholic church for other christian
churches  will move again to the Baha'i Faith, in the future when the Faith is
ready for them.  In st. lucia it doesn't seem quite ready yet.

Love to all

Marcus

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 13:20:21 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: lua@sover.net (LuAnne Hightower)
Subject: farewell

Beloveds,

Allah-u-Abha.  I'm off to the left coast this evening.  See y'all who are
coming to Bosch at Bosch.  I'll be withdrawing for 10 days in Sacramento.
But loading Eudora for my sister, so if we get her up and running, beware...

Much love to all,
LuAnne

=END=

From: Member1700@aol.com
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 13:26:58 -0500
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Defending Jamshed Fozdar!

You know, guys, this argument back and forth about Fozdar's books is
beginning to get a little tiresome.  Now, I will admit that this last
exchange was amusing, watching a naive Baha'i position being ground into
little pieces by someone who is fully capable of making even finer mincemeat
of silly statements about Buddhism.  But, my only fear now is, What next?
Why should Baha'is find the need to defend Jamshid Fozdar's books as the
last word on Buddhist beliefs?  That is very curious, indeed.  Is it just
because they are the only Baha'i books we have on the subject?  What if they
are awful?
Now, I am not saying that Fozdar's books are awful.  But no one every
accused them of being scholarly, did they?  They are Baha'i polemic, and that
is all.
I read both of Fozdar's books carelessly many years ago.  I remember, even
at that time, with no deep knowledge of Buddhism, coming to the conclusion
that these books were just a sort of "Thief in the Night" for Buddhism, and
that is all.  The idea that they should be regarded as scholarship frankly
never occurred to me.  And I am glad that it didn't.  (Imagine a Baha'i
taking Thief in the Night to a university and trying to pass it off as the
last word on Christian eschatology.  Ka-boom!  You would get a reaction
similar to what we have here.  But then, no one every accused Bill Sears of
being a Christian scholar.)
Anyway, while I am grateful that Bruce Burrell would use his considerable
scholarly skill and knowledge to write a critique of Fozdar's books from a
Buddhist perspective, and while it should be obvious here to any reasonable
person that his critique is thoroughly devestating, I don't see any point in
going further.  Fozdar's books, it should be obvious, are not works of
scholarship, but Baha'i apologetics (good or bad) written for the purpose of
converting Buddhists to the Baha'i Faith.  To treat them as scholarship is to
distort their purpose, and to do them a disservice.  For Baha'is to cling to
them as they would to Holy Scripture seems to me to be similarly unseemly.
(In fact, quite irrational.)
Furthermore, and here I am repeating myself, for Baha'is to tell Buddhists
what they believe, or what they should believe, or what their scriptures mean
(Buddhist protests notwithstanding) is quite despicable and should be
repugnant to the very notion of tolerance.  It is certainly contrary to
Baha'i teachings.
Anyway, sorry to ramble.  But don't you think that this thread is at an
end?

Tony

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 11:39:02 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: frlw@midway.uchicago.edu, Masumian@mail.utexas.edu,
Noorbakhsh.Monzavi@hibo.no
Subject: Reuters 2/12/96 (fwd)

>    'IRAN' STORIES
>Transmission date: 96/02/12
>  1. 14:59 IRAN BARS MOST LIBERALS, APPROVES RADICALS IN VOTE
>  2. 12:33 IRAN PROTESTS TO TURKEY OVER OPPOSITION RALLY
>  3. 11:28 ALGERIA CRISIS UNTIL MOSLEM DEMANDS MET - IRAN
>  4. 09:55 GCC URGES IRAN TO STOP ``MEDDLING'' IN GULF STATES
>Transmission date: 96/02/11
>  5. 14:34 BAHAI GETS DEATH SENTENCE IN IRAN -FRENCH REPORT
>  6. 06:49 IRAN MARKS REVOLUTION, PLEDGES TO STAY ON COURSE
>
>=START=   XMT: 14:59 Mon Feb 12  EXP: 4 :00 Thu Feb 15
>
>
> Iran bars most liberals, approves radicals in vote
>    TEHRAN, Feb 12 (Reuter) - Iranian authorities have barred most candidates
>of a liberal opposition coalition from running in the March 8 parliamentary
>elections, the group said on Monday.
>    But officials approved most candidates backed by a radical Islamist group
>that often criticises government policies, a source close to the radical group
>said.
>    Election officials approved only three among a coalition of 15 candidates,
>which included members of the liberal Islamist Iran Freedom Movement,
>nationalists from the National Front and independents, the liberal coalition
>group said in a statement.
>    The statement, a copy of which was faxed to Reuters, accused the
>authorities of violating the Constitution and election law and said rejection
>letters sent to candidates did not specify why they were barred but asked them
>to file appeals ``in a well-documented way'' within four days.
>    Iran Freedom Movement leader Ebrahim Yazdi, foreign minister in Iran's
>first government after the 1979 Islamic revolution, former interior minister
>Hashem Sabbaghian and academician Ezzatollah Sahabi were allowed to run, a
>group spokesman told Reuters.
>    A source close to the radical Islamist Mujahideen of the Islamic Revolution
>told Reuters that election officials approved most of the 16 candidates backed
>by this group, including its leader Behzad Nabavi, a former minister of heavy
>industries.
>    All candidates backed by the group, a small legal party of Islamist
>intellectuals, were rejected in the last election by the clerical Guardian
>Council which screens candidates.
>    Several conservative politicians and newspapers had urged the Council to
>reject liberal candidates including members of the Freedom Movement, an illegal
>but tolerated opposition group, which had boycotted three past elections.
>    It was not clear how many of the 5,359 candidates who registered to run for
>the 270-seat Majlis, or parliament had been approved by election bodies set up
>by the Council.
>    A spokesman for the conservative Council said last week the candidates
>would be screened for their belief in Islam, the Islamic system of government,
>including the principle that it is headed by a supreme spiritual leader.
>    Election officials vowed to disqualify candidates, whom they did not name
>but whom they accused of trying to buy votes or of being backed by tribal
>chiefs.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 12:33 Mon Feb 12  EXP: 2 :00 Thu Feb 15
>
>
> Iran protests to Turkey over opposition rally
>    TEHRAN, Feb 12 (Reuter) - Iran protested to Ankara on Monday for allowing
>the Iranian opposition group Mujahideen Khalq to hold a demonstration in
>Turkey, Iran's official news agency IRNA said.
>    It said the Turkish ambassador was summoned to the Foreign Ministry and
>handed a ``strong protest'' over Ankara's issuing a permit to supporters of the
>Iraq-based Mujahideen for a rally on Sunday, the anniversary of Iran's 1979
>Islamic revolution.
>    ``This is the first time the Turkish government has let the grouplet stage
>anti-Islamic demonstrations in the country,'' IRNA said.
>    Relations between Islamic Iran and secular Turkey have improved in recent
>years after they agreed to stop groups opposed to each government from
>operating in the other country.
>    Turkish officials last week accused Iran and Syria of dodging questions
>about their possible role in six truckloads of arms Turkey says it seized while
>on their way from Iran to Kurdish rebels based in Lebanon's Syrian-controlled
>Bekaa Valley.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 11:28 Mon Feb 12  EXP: 1 :00 Thu Feb 15
>
>
> Algeria crisis until Moslem demands met - Iran
>    TEHRAN, Feb 12 (Reuter) - Iran's state-run radio said on Monday the latest
>car bomb attacks in Algiers showed that the Algerian crisis would not end until
>authorities dealt with demands by Islamic militants.
>    ``The recent violence in Algeria shows...that it will be impossible to
>reach a basic solution to Algeria's four-year crisis as long as...the demands
>of the Moslem people of this country are ignored,'' Tehran radio said in a
>commentary.
>    The radio was commenting on two car bombs in Algiers on Sunday which killed
>18 people and injured nearly 100.
>    ``Unfortunately some innocent people are always killed in this conflict.
>(But) the main Islamic groups in Algeria...have frequently condemned violence
>against the public and stressed that Islamist militants only attacked targets
>related to the government set up by the (1992) coup,'' the radio added.
>    Iran has repeatedly called for talks between Algeria's government and
>opposition groups to end four years of violence which has claimed some 50,000
>lives since army-backed officials cancelled a general election which Islamic
>militants were poised to win.
>    Algeria cut diplomatic links with Iran three years ago over what it called
>Iranian government backing for Moslem militants fighting the secular
>government.
>    Tehran says it gives only moral and political support to Islamic movements
>such as those in Algeria, which it says are inspired by the 1979 Islamic
>revolution in Iran.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 09:55 Mon Feb 12  EXP: 9 :00 Thu Feb 15
>
>
> GCC urges Iran to stop ``meddling'' in Gulf states
>    ABU DHABI, Feb 12 (Reuter) - The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) on Monday
>urged Iran to stop ``interfering'' in the affairs of Gulf Arab states and
>expressed its concern over unrest in Bahrain, the official WAM news agency
>reported
>    Outgoing GCC secretary-general Fahim bin-Sultan al-Qassimi called on Iran
>to ``respect the sovereignty of all the states in the region and to refrain
>from interfering in the affairs of other countries...,'' WAM said.
>    ``Security in the GCC states is indivisible,'' he added.
>    Qassimi's comments focused on a statement recently distributed by the
>Iranian embassy in Kuwait that commented on the situation in Bahrain.
>    Kuwaiti academics said the Iranian statement said Tehran had nothing to do
>with the unrest in Bahrain and the country's problems stemmed from mistreatment
>of its Shi'ite population.
>    Qassimi expressed his ``deep regret'' over the embassy statement ``that
>provokes sedition supportive of the minority who cause destruction in Bahrain
>and constitutes clear interference in one of the GCC countries,'' WAM said.
>    Bahrain, a member of the GCC which also includes Saudi Arabian, Kuwait, the
>United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Oman, has faced a wave of protests over the
>past few months.
>    The Bahraini authorities have blamed the violence on foreign-backed groups.
>    On Sunday, a bomb ripped through a luxury hotel in Manama, wounding three
>people. Officials blamed the blast --the second attack in a month against a
>hotel in the Gulf's main financial centre --on ``terrorists'' seeking to
>destabilise the country.
>    Members of Bahrain's Shi'ite Moslem majority opposed to the country's Sunni
>rulers have been campaigning for more than a year for the release of political
>prisoners and restoration of a parliament dissolved in 1975.
>    The unrest, which included arson attacks and demonstrations, has also
>raised concerns in other oil-rich Gulf Arab states.
>    Qassimi expressed concern over the ``continuing interference by foreign
>parties in Bahrain's internal affairs with the aim of provoking sedition among
>the Bahraini people and disrupting their economic achievements...,'' WAM said.
>    He added that the ``foreign parties'' aimed to ``shake security and
>stability in the Gulf Arab region.''
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 14:34 Sun Feb 11  EXP: 4 :00 Wed Feb 14
>
>
> Bahai gets death sentence in Iran -French report
>    PARIS, Feb 11 (Reuter) - An Islamic revolutionary court in Iran has
>sentenced to death a 49-year-old Bahai for apostasy, returning to his original
>faith after converting to Islam, the French branch of the Bahai faith said on
>Sunday.
>    Dhabihu'llah Mahrami, an Agriculture Department employee in Yazd province,
>will also have all his possessions confiscated according to the court's ruling
>handed down in the past few days, a Bahai spokeswoman said.
>    Mahrami, born a Bahai, was accused of converting to Islam in 1981 to avoid
>being fired from his government job but returned to the Bahai faith seven years
>later, according to translations of court documents provided by the French
>Bahais.
>    ``The Bahais of France fear that this verdict marks a resumption of open
>persecution against our co-religionists in Iran.
>    ``Thanks to the pressures of international opinion, executions had
>stopped...but there were still more subtle persecutions aimed at strangling
>them economically and repressing them socially,'' she said.
>    The Bahai faith, an off-shoot of Islam, was created in Iran 150 years ago.
>It says it has six million members worldwide including 350,000 in Iran where,
>according to the court documents released in Paris, it is officially considered
>    The last execution of a Bahai in Iran was in 1992 when Bahman Samandari, a
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 06:49 Sun Feb 11  EXP: 6 :00 Wed Feb 14
>
>
> Iran marks revolution, pledges to stay on course
>    By Sharif Imam-Jomeh
>    TEHRAN, Feb 11 (Reuter) - Iranians took to the streets on Sunday to
>celebrate the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic revolution against the Shah and
>re-affirm allegiance to the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's strict
>guidelines.
>    Tens of thousands marched from five points in Tehran to rally at the city's
>Azadi (Freedom) Square, waving flags and bearing portraits of Khomeini and his
>successor, spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
>    About 100,000 thronged in the square and official media said millions
>attended similar rallies throughout the country. Witnesses said security
>appeared tighter than in previous years.
>    Visiting American Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan, main foreign guest
>at the Tehran rally, hailed the revolution and said: ``Iran is now in the
>vanguard of an Islamic revolution that is sweeping the earth.
>    ``You must not despair because it appears that enemies are all around this
>marvellous revolution. You must not get weak or weary in your vanguard
>position,'' the self-styled leader of the Nation of Islam said.
>    Farrakhan, who arrived in Tehran on Saturday, described himself as ``your
>Moslem brother from the United States of America.'' His speech in English was
>loudspeakers to people in the streets.
>    Holding a copy of the Koran, Farrakhan ended his 35-minute speech by
>chanting Allahu Akbar (God is Greatest), a refrain picked up by the crowd who
>also chanted: ``To the anguish of America, our movement has spread across the
>world.''
>    As President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani arrived, Farrakhan left the stage,
>walked to the Iranian leader's car and embraced him.
>    Rafsanjani said Moslems worldwide supported the Iranian revolution and
>added: ``Today you witnessed one from a country known for its enmity against
>Islam.''
>    Calling Farrakhan ``a speaker for more than 30 million oppressed black
>Americans,'' Rafsanjani said, ``Everybody understands that our confrontation is
>with the government and not the people of America.
>    ``It is the justice-seeking message of Islam that attracts people
>everywhere. We do not care if that is called exporting revolution.''
>    Rafsanjani said the Iranian people still regarded the United States as
>``the Great Satan,'' and said: ``As long as America, by adopting unreasonable
>and blatantly disgraceful policies..., (is) not showing the least sign of
>goodwill...the Iranian people will continue chanting 'Death to America'.''
>    The crowd pledged continued allegiance to the revolution by approving a
>10-point resolution read at the end of the rally.
>    It re-affirmed that Khomeini was the architect of the revolution and his
>guidelines would always be followed. It also confirmed obedience to Khamenei as
>a religious duty.
>    The resolution also praised Rafsanjani and expressed support for the
>government's development projects.
>    One point called on officials to work towards social justice, eradicate
>poverty, and firmly deal with corruption which it said caused social
>discontent.
>
>=END=
>
>
>

=END=

From: "Eric D. Pierce"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Tue, 13 Feb 1996 11:04:28 PST8PDT
Subject:       UHJ on living with ambiguities / was, re: rights/liberalism

******************** appended message #1 of 2 ********************

: ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
: > From: secretariat@bwc.org
: > Subj:                            Area: Email
:
: >From mds@bwc.org Sun May 21 03:34:10 1995
: >Received: from coral.bwc.org (coral.bwc.org.il) by qudrat.bwc.org
: >with SMTP id AA22216
: >Date: Sun, 21 May 95 11:40:58 IDT
: >Message-Id: <9505210840.AA06848@coral.bwc.org
: >From: Baha'i World Centre
: >Prepared-By:  Correspondence Office, Document Distribution System
: >Mime-Version: 1.0
: >Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII
:
:                                                           19 May 1995
:
:
:
: Dear Baha'i Friend,
:
:      The Universal House of Justice has consulted on your email message
: of 4 April 1995 concerning the character of some of the postings on Baha'i
: subjects in electronic discussion groups, and has asked us to convey to you
: the following.
:
:      Your concerns, in the context in which you have described them in the
: second paragraph of your message, are legitimate for a Baha'i, and you should
: not hesitate to express them, as you wish, in a manner that is intended to
: illumine the exchange of ideas in any discussion in which you may participate.
:
:      The opportunity which electronic communication technology provides for
: more speedy and thorough consultation among the friends is highly significant.
: Without doubt, it represents another manifestation of a development eagerly
: anticipated by the Guardian when he foresaw the creation of "a mechanism of
: world intercommunication ... embracing the whole planet, freed from national
: hindrances and restrictions, and functioning with marvellous swiftness and
: perfect regularity".
:
:      As you well appreciate, the extent to which such technology advances
: the work of the Faith depends, of course, on the manner in which it is used.
: As a medium for Baha'is to exchange views, it imposes on participants the
: same requirements of moderation, candour, and courtesy as would be the case
: in any other discussion.  Likewise, those involved should avoid belittling
: the views of one another.  In this regard, the House of Justice has noted
: and invidious labels like "traditionalists" and "liberals", which divide the
: Baha'i community.  To the extent that this divisive habit of mind may persist
: in the Baha'i community, it is obviously a carry-over from non-Baha'i society
: and a manifestation of an immature conception of life.  If Baha'is were to
: persist in this mode of thinking, it would bring to naught even the most
: worthwhile intellectual endeavour, as has so conspicuously been the case with
: societies of the past.
:
:      Most important of all, as with any exploration by Baha'is of the beliefs
: and practices of their Faith, electronic discussion will serve the interests
of
: the Cause and its members only as it is conducted within the framework of the
: Baha'i Teachings and the truths they enshrine.  To attempt to discuss the
Cause
: of God apart from or with disdain for the authoritative guidance inherent in
: these Teachings would clearly be a logical contradiction.  To take the first
: point mentioned in your letter, it is obvious that seeking to impose limits
: on the universality of the authority of God's Manifestation would lead to the
: frustration of serious scholarly work and generate disharmony within an effort
: whose success depends precisely upon a spirit of unity and mutual trust.  The
: standard is the one made clear by Baha'u'llah Himself:
:
:
:                                                             17 May 1995
:                                                             Page 2
:
:
:           The essence of belief in Divine unity consisteth in regarding
:      Him Who is the Manifestation of God and Him Who is the invisible,
:      the inaccessible, the unknowable Essence as one and the same.  By
:      this is meant that whatsoever pertaineth to the former, all His
:      acts and doings, whatever He ordaineth or forbiddeth, should be
:      considered, in all their aspects, and under all circumstances,
:      and without any reservation, as identical with the Will of God
:      Himself.
:
:      With regard to the harmony of science and religion, the Writings of
: the Central Figures and the commentaries of the Guardian make abundantly
: clear that the task of humanity, including the Baha'i community that serves
: as the "leaven" within it, is to create a global civilization which embodies
: both the spiritual and material dimensions of existence.  The nature and scope
: of such a civilization are still beyond anything the present generation can
: conceive.  The prosecution of this vast enterprise will depend on a
progressive
: interaction between the truths and principles of religion and the discoveries
: and insights of scientific inquiry.  This entails living with ambiguities as
: a natural and inescapable feature of the process of exploring reality.  It
: also requires us not to limit science to any particular school of thought
: or methodological approach postulated in the course of its development.
: The challenge facing Baha'i thinkers is to provide responsible leadership
: in this endeavour, since it is they who have both the priceless insights of
: the Revelation and the advantages conferred by scientific investigation.
:
:      The ease and relative impersonality of the electronic medium require
: in some ways an even higher level of self-discipline than is the case in
: situations where a spirit of unity is reinforced by the opportunity for direct
: personal contact and social interaction.  In the pursuit of such a spirit of
: : unity, Baha'is will, without doubt, wish to assist the consultative
processes
: by sharing and discussing relevant Baha'i texts.  This will itself have the
: further effect of drawing attention back to the framework of Baha'i belief.
:
:      The House of Justice assures you of its prayers in the Holy Shrines on
: your behalf that the abundant confirmations of Baha'u'llah may ever sustain
: you.
:
:                                     With loving Baha'i greetings,
:
:                                     Department of the Secretariat
:
:
:

******************** appended message #2 of 2 ********************

: Date: Mon, 24 Jul 95 15:17:28 IDT
: To: pierceed@sswdserver.sswd.csus.edu
: From: Baha'i World Centre
: Prepared-By:  Correspondence Office, Document Distribution System
: Mime-Version: 1.0
: Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII
: X-PMFLAGS: 36176000
:
:
:
:
:
:
:
:
:
: -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
:
: Transmitted by email
:
:
: TO:  Mr. Eric D. Pierce                              DATE:  18 July 1995
:
:
:
: -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
:
: MESSAGE:
:
:
: The Universal House of Justice has received your email message dated 9 June
: 1995 enquiring as to the accuracy of an Internet posting which cites the
: letter of 19 May 1995 from the Department of the Secretariat concerning the
use
: of electronic discussion groups.  We have been asked to say that, with the
: exception of paragraph indentations, this posting is an accurate transmission
: of the letter.  We would, however, draw your attention to the fact that the
: sixth paragraph is, in its entirety, a quotation, as this may be less evident
: as a result of alterations to paragraph indentations.
:
: With regard to your question as to whether there are various messages in
: originating from the Baha'i World Centre, the contents of the letter of 19 May
: 1995 convey the current guidance on the subject and should be useful to
Baha'is
: who participate in electronic discussion groups.
:
: Department of the Secretariat
:
:

**********************************************************************

Hi again,

re:

> Date sent:      Mon, 12 Feb 96 16:20:26 EST
> From:           Richard Harmsen
> To:
> Subject:        re: rights/liberalism

> Thanks Eric Pierce for the background to "Individual Rights..."
...snip

Since no one has posted them for awhile, I thought the newer
subscribers might benefit from a repost of the above messages
from the Supreme Body. The first is to an individual who does
not want his name attached to publicly distributed copies of
this message. The second is a response to my inquiry as to the
accuracy of a 2nd hand copy of the message as distributed on
the internet.

questions posed to the Universal House of Justice involved:

1. the infallibility of the Manifestations (and whether
that infallibility can be limited to moral and ethical
infallibility)

2. name-calling (such as traditional versus liberal)

3. the proper relationship between science and religion

Note that for message 1, the date on page 1 is different than
the date on page 2, and this inconsistency indeed was in the
original transmission. Apparently the secretariat@BWC is not
infallible with regard to page numbering. :)

The problem with paragraph 6 that is mentioned in message 2 was
a reference to a different, slightly altered 2nd hand version of
message 1 that was distributed on talisman. The version of
message 1 that is included above is an unaltered copy as sent to
the original recipient, with the exception that the recipient
from BWC before sending it to me.

EP

=END=

Date: 13 Feb 96 14:06:23 EST
From: David Langness <72110.2126@compuserve.com>
To:
Subject: Legislation and the Faith

Dear Talismanians,

Happy Valentine's Day to all you lovers of humanity out there, and to you,
too, Derek and Burl.  Economists are misanthropes, wouldn't you agree?

On a serious note, I wanted to respond briefly to the idea that we've been
kicking around for a few days, namely that legislation where it regards
rights occupies an inferior position to the development of the spirit.

In this regard, I can't help but agree.

But I would point out that the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is
of the United States, while also agreeing, has taken upon itself the
most praised activity of recent years in its External Affairs office and
their work advocating and actively promoting further worldwide legislation
for human rights.

Working for the ratification of international covenants and treaties on
genocide (chiefly held up from global approval by the US government's
refusal to sign, and that refusal chiefly coming from one politician,
Senator Jesse Helms) with organizations like the National Lawyers Guild,
the ACLU, and many other so-called "liberal human rights groups," the
Office of External Affairs expends Baha'i funds and the considerable
energy of a very talented staff to push for legislation, at the national
and the international level.

Seems to me that kind of activity has been approved at the highest levels
of Baha'i governance, especially given the House's praise of late for its
success.  In fact, you might say that the work of Kit Bigelow Cosby and
her staff in the External Affairs office has been the high point of the
last two global plans, at least where the concern the West.

Anyone who argues that Baha'is should not work to pass legislation, should
disengage from the real world and concentrate only on inner spiritual
development has not been reading their House messages for a while, IMV.

Like Steve and his uncle Jim Nelson, I think this activity holds great
promise for further application within the Faith...

Love,

David

=END=

From: Member1700@aol.com
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 14:23:23 -0500
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Fwd: "The Work," the Fourth Way, Claymont, etc.

This is from a friend of mine.  Some Talismanians may be interested in it,
and may want to contact him.

Tony
---------------------
Forwarded message:
From:	73043.1540@compuserve.com (John Dale)
To:	vmccrae@aol.com (Vonda McCrae)
CC:	CHROMEY@f910.n901.z1.fidonet.org (jackchromey), anita@bnc.oneworld.wa.com
(Anita Jacobson), 74727.3044@compuserve.com (john&riserichardson),
member1700@aol.com (Tony Lee), 75551.3173@compuserve.com (Nick Lento),
102666.2250@compuserve.com (Michael McKennett), HMOSTAGHIM@aol.com (H.
Mostaghim), snandy@ids2.idsonline.com (Samir Nandy), iolson@mitre.org (I.
Olson), MSBQ51A@prodigy.com (MS ANNE PAGE), rriggs1060@aol.com (Robert
Riggs), JSTURDIV@capaccess.org (James Sturdivant), erikjander@aol.com (Edward
Widmer, Jr.), ywurmfeld@usbnc.org (Yael Wurmfeld)
Date: 96-02-11 09:38:11 EST

Dear Vonda and Other Baha'i Friends,

The things I've been sending to some of you regarding Claymont, "the
Work", "the Fourth Way," and so on are aimed at providing a little bridging
insight for Baha'is into one of the spiritual movements and "inner
dimensions"
that I try to keep a foot in and which I think someday Baha'is will come to
see
as scientifically and literarily valuable and ahead of its time.  This is the
work of a particular tradition and line of people extending from George
Gurdjieff (d. 1949) through P.D. Ouspensky (d. 1947) through John Godolphin
Bennett (d. 1974) and his students and currently involving the Claymont
community outside of Washington, D.C. that Bennett founded in 1974 on a
400-acre
estate near Charles Town, West Virginia.
The aim of Claymont was to serve as an experiment in setting up a
consciously self-educating and self-evolving community that would work with
and
test the various inner traditions and spiritual practices from around the
world,
particularly those brought to the West by George Gurdjieff in the first half
of
the 20th century. This was to be done along with sustainable agriculture,
community service, and a view towards making an intellectual contribution to
the
Synergic Epoch that we are now in. It also serves as a place for holding
seminars, and a number of groups have rented it for weekends or week-long
periods as a kind of "retreat" center.

Bennett was born in 1897.  He studied mathematics and, at the time that
Einstein's and Minkowski's ideas of four-dimensional space-time were gaining
attention, Bennett came to feel  that more than four dimensions were required
in
representing physical reality. He and a group of people in various fields in
the
1940s began working on some ideas which eventually became his four-volume
opus
"The Dramatic Universe" and the journal called Systematics.  In that work
Bennett outlined a six-dimensional physics and a cosmological vision which
drew
its inspiration from Gurdjieffian and Sufi sources as well as his own
systematic
insights and the data of the sciences.  Bennett had first encountered
Gurdjieff
in the 1920s in Turkey and later studied with Gurdjieff's student Ouspensky
and
later with Gurdjieff himself in 1949 in Paris. He learned from Gurdjieff the
fundamental idea of universal reciprocal maintenance of entities on every
scale,
along with other ideas that Gurdjieff presents from a cosmic and
extraterrestrial viewpoint in the form of literary tales in his book "All and
Everything: An Objectively Impartial Critique of the Life of Man". Bennett
also
learned the practical techniques of breath awareness, bodily relaxation, and
conscious circulation of attention through the body, the feelings, and the
mind
which lay the inner foundations for impartial self-awareness and
self-understanding and which types of efforts form part of what is called
"the
Work." In contrast to yogic disciplines which focused on the body, the
emotions,
or the mind separately, the "Fourth Way" focuses on all three at once in
order
to lead one toward a "consciously blended" and harmonized level of
inner-being-togetherness called simply "Man #4", which was the beginning of
further possible developments.  Another part of the Work was the rhythms and
musically accompanied "sacred dances" or exercises called Movements that
Gurdjieff had learned from his travels into India, Tibet, Mongolia, Iraq, and
the Middle East in general, some of which are --  I can testify -- of great
power and beauty and which come from very old historical sources. Still
another
aspect of the Work was work in groups and in a community context.  Still
another
was help to the Work itself, and understanding the fact that this Work was
not
something recent in human history but had been going on for a long, long time
and that it is closely connected with the inner unity of the religious
on Earth.

Bennett himself also travelled in Africa and the Middle East and met with
Naqshbandi and other Sufi traditions which had earlier given to Gurdjieff the
symbol and interpretation of the so-called "enneagram" -- a version of the
9-pointed star -- which in the Sufi tradition is a symbol of the presence of
God.   Bennett himself worked on the "seeing" and understanding of this
symbol,
and others have carried on after him. The enneagram's introduction into the
West
came through more than one channel and this symbol is now (in what some feel
is
a superficial way) also playing a rapidly growing role in "personality types"
psychology, but  it goes much, much deeper than this in its significance, in
my
opinion, and in fact connects with the Baha'i Faith itself, showing us even
more
of the treasure hidden in the name 'Baha' (whose Arabic letters add up to 9).

Bennett knew of the Baha'i Faith and even had a Baha'i secretary at one
time in the 1950s. In his study of history  in Vol. 4 of his "Dramatic
Universe," he makes a favorable mention of the Baha'i Faith as "possibly
destined to play a significant role in the New Epoch."

Among spiritual movements that I am aware of, the Fourth Way is unique in
the intensity, objectivity, and depth of its spiritual, pyschological, and
cosmological writings. It has produced some very fine expositions of the
inner
meanings of scripture.  In its emphasis on the "inner unity of religions" and
its broad vision of history and of our current Synergic Epoch which it dates
to
the 1840s, in the profound creativity and sense of responsibility for their
lives that it has generated in many people, and in its insistence on a
concrete
cosmic vision of human existence and destiny, not to mention in the haunting
beauty of its music and the practical benefits one can gain from its
exercises
and group manifestations, the Fourth Way has provided for me as a Baha'i
access
to many, many things of great value and to a systematic, concrete vision of
the
unity of science and religion that I have found nowhere else.

Claymont, where some students of the Fourth Way have resided, is "having
its problems"  after 20 years of existence, and various proposals for its
possible acquisition by Buddhist or other groups are being studied by the
Board.
That is the immediate context of the discussions I am responding to.

Many of the people in the Fourth way are only vaguely aware of the Baha'i
Faith and come to the Fourth Way precisely because they are sceptical of the
value of what they see as "religion" or because they sense that something
deeper
than ordinary religion is calling them.  I am trying to build bridges here to
a
two-way flow of intormation between Baha'is and Fourth Way students because I
think the mutual benefits in each direction will be vital and extremely
supportive and stimulating.

If any of you would like contact with further information about Fourth
Way literature and activities or theory, please do not hesitate to use this
fascinating e-mail medium to contact me.

Sincerely,

John Dale

5613 Leesburg Pike #17
Falls Church, VA 22041
tel. (703) 845-1919
fax (703) 845-1554
e-mail: 73043.1540@compuserve.com

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 14:09:36 -0500 (EST)
From: Stephen Johnson
To: talisman@indiana.edu, Stephen Johnson
Subject: KI pp.37 - 39

That the term "sun" hath been applied to the
leaders of religion is due to their lofty position,
their fame, and renown.  Such are the universally
recognized divines of every age, who speak with
authority, and whose fame is securely established.
If they be in the likeness of the Sun of Truth, they
will surely be accounted as the most exalted of all
luminaries; otherwise, they are to be recognized as
the focal centres of hellish fire.  Even as He saith:
"Verily, the sun and the moon are both condemned
to the torment of infernal fire."+F1  You are no doubt
familiar with the interpretation of the term "sun"
and "moon" mentioned in this verse; no need therefore
to refer unto it.  And whosoever is of the element
of this "sun" and "moon", that is, followeth
the example of these leaders in setting his face
towards falsehood and in turning away from the
truth he undoubtedly cometh out of infernal
gloom and returneth thereunto.
And now, O seeker, it behooveth us firmly to
cling unto the Urvatu'l-Vuthqa, that perchance
we may leave behind the darksome night of error,
and embrace the dawning light of divine guidance.
Shall we not flee from the face of denial, and seek
the sheltering shadow of certitude?  Shall we not
free ourselves from the horror of satanic gloom,
and hasten towards the rising light of the heavenly
Beauty?  In such wise, we bestow upon you the
fruit of the Tree of divine knowledge, that ye may
gladly and joyously abide in the Ridvan of divine
wisdom.
In another sense, by the terms `sun', `moon', and
`stars' are meant such laws and teachings as have
been established and proclaimed in every Dispensation,
such as the laws of prayer and fasting.
These have, according to the law of the Qur'an,
been regarded, when the beauty of the Prophet
most fundamental and binding laws of His dispensation.
To this testify the texts of the traditions and
chronicles, which, on account of their being widely
known, need not be referred to here.  Nay rather,
in every Dispensation the law concerning prayer
hath been emphasized and universally enforced.
To this testify the recorded traditions ascribed
to the lights that have emanated from the Day-star
of Truth, the essence of the Prophet Muhammad.
The traditions established the fact that in all
Dispensations the law of prayer hath constituted a
fundamental element of the Revelation of all the
Prophets of God--a law the form and the manner
of which hath been adapted to the varying requirements
of every age.  Inasmuch as every subsequent
Revelation hath abolished the manners,
habits, and teachings that have been clearly, specifically,
and firmly established by the former Dispensation,
these have accordingly been symbolically
expressed in terms of `sun' and `moon'.  "That
He might prove you, which of you excel in
deeds."+F2

+F1 Qur'an 55:5.
+F2 Qur'an 67:2.

=END=

From: "K. Paul Johnson"
Subject: Superseding Jesus?
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 9:41:00 EST

I'm back with an effort to invite discussion of whether or not
Jesus Christ is superseded as a spiritual messenger in the way
that Muslims, Baha'is, and for that matter Theosophists,
argue.  There are many levels at which this can be discussed,
and of course the "Bible tells me so" stuff leave me cold.  But
a few points for consideration:

1. Christianity is incredibly prolific in terms of creativity
and adaptability.  In the century since the death of
Baha'u'llah, Baha'is have painstakingly evolved a single
the human race.  During the same time frame, Christianity has
diversified into competing fundamentalist, liberal metaphysical,
adventist, Mormon, etc. avenues and has generated a vast body
of scholarship on Jesus and Christian history.  Which of these
is really expressing the spirit of renewal associated with the
idea of Christ's return?  To Baha'is, Christianity's greatest
weakness is its internal diversity and historical ambiguity.
But to me, that is its greatest strength.  This parallels the
argument between Marxism/Leninism and capitalism:
decentralization and diversity win out over centralized control
and uniformity.

2.  Jesus, while not in my view a unique and exclusive savior,
does have qualities that raise him above the other Western
avatar figures.  His empathy vs. purity message is more
clearcut and consistent, as well as compelling, than anything
Zoroaster, Muhammad, the Bab, Baha'u'llah or the Hebrew
humanity in general.  His direct manifestation of spiritual
charisma, via healings and highly charged speech, just has
greater impact than any other figure in Western religious
history.  There is a universality in Christianity that has made
it more adaptable to a wider variety of cultural contexts than
any other faith; a lot of this is due IMO to the universal
appeal of Jesus himself.  Passages like the Lord's Prayer and
the Sermon on the Mount have an ability to lift the soul that
cannot be denied even by non-Christians.

3.  The promise of Christianity is greater than that of any of
its competitors (with the possible exception of Sikhism, which
is very similar in essence).  Not salvation as an escape from
hell, purchased by his crucifixion-- that's a tale for
children.  But rather, direct intimate relations with the Father through
the Way shown by one who came to know his own oneness with the
Source.  The transcendent God of the theologians and the other
Western religions is not the warm personal presence that is
promised by Jesus; Muhammad and Baha'u'llah would never dream
of saying "greater things than these shall ye do."  Quite
simply, the spiritual rewards of following Christ are greater--
at least as promised-- than are those of obeying some Messenger
or Manifestation who is always telling you how far God is above
you and how much you need some authority figure to tell you
what to do.  And the costs to one's integrity and self-respect
are far, far less.

None of this takes into account the objections of Indic or Far
Eastern religions to Christianity.  Of course it has all the
negative features of all the Western religions: ecclesiastical
authority punishing people for independent thought and action,
spiritual snobbery, you name it.  But those things are not
attributable to the essence of Christianity IMO, but are rather
signs of how much it has been subverted.  Buddhism starts out
with a head- rather than heart- based message, and to a certain
extent is therefore "higher."  But only in the later Mahayana,
in which compassion becomes the ruling motif, does it become
satisfying to the whole being, IMO.  Christianity evolved in
the opposite direction, starting with a heart-message from a
Jewish mystic but absorbing Greek metaphysics and thereby

Stray thoughts for consideration.

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 14:24:28 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Legislation and the Faith
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "David Langness" <72110.2126@compuserve.com>,
"Talisman"

>But I would point out that the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is
>of the United States, while also agreeing, has taken upon itself the
>most praised activity of recent years in its External Affairs office and
>their work advocating and actively promoting further worldwide legislation
>for human rights.

I cannot help but agree with the above.  I have been genuinely impressed
and surprised by the influence and quality of the work done at the
External Affairs Office.  I must say also say that I am surprised that I
have yet to hear any plan of action proposed so far for the stay of
execution for and also the release of  Dhabihu'llah Mahrami.  I imagine
it is simply that we have yet not been informed of the progress in this
grave and troubling matter.  If anyone has any information relating to a
plan of action I would be quite interested.  I remember when I was in
Alaska the NSA informed us of  a system for sending telegrams to ones
Congressman and Senator that was set up.  I do not know if this is
relevant now.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 14:59:08 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Superseding Jesus?

K. Paul Johnson,

> 'Buddhism starts out with a head- rather than heart- based message,
and to a certain extent is therefore "higher."  But only in the later
Mahayana, in which compassion becomes the ruling motif, does it
become satisfying to the whole being, IMO.' <

Head and heart is not a Buddhist dichotomy. Citta can be translated as
both mind and heart. I don't agree that Buddhism starts with a head
msg, nor does it start with a heart msg. It starts with a recognition that
cuts through both head and heart. As for compassion, that is woven
through the fabric of the teaching. The Mahayana has no special claim
on compassion.

Bruce

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 21:33:27 +0100 (MET)
Subject: lawh i tibb questions
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Quanta,
since our betters are strangely silent (hint hint) I can tell you
what I found. This may shock them into taking to the
cyberwaves to correct the mess I am about to make of this.

ql y|qwmu
l| t`klw||l| b`d |ljw`
w l| tashrabw| b`d |lHujw`

(where | is aleph, H is the soft "h", and I have marked only the
short vowels which are marked in my text - thus "w" is generally
a long 'u', not the consonant w, but I am not expert in vowelling
texts and this representation should I think allow an expert to
reconstruct the text as it appears. the text is partly pointed and it
is important to distinguish between what is there [which may be
scribal, but is certainly reasonably expert] and my own poor
guesses)

Now my arabic is at the childish level, but l| is "not" and `kala is
"to eat". b`d has a variety of meanings, depending on the
pointing: ba`uda is to be distant or far from as a vowel or, as a
preposition (here, I think) it means "after, in addition to, aside
from", or when pointed as ba`du it means "then, thereupon,
afterwards". Finally, jw` is to be hungry.
The second phrase is parallel in structure, and rhymes with the
first. shrb is to drink, and Hj` has a variety of meanings
including to sleep peacefully and to appease (as in appease
hunger). The noun form here, Hjw`, means slumber, lull, calming
down or remission (of a disease).
The first problem for me is the ambiguity of b`d: in the first
phrase the other words tell us it must mean 'beyond what is
demanded by'. If the same is true of the second phrase, it must be
translated [drink not beyond what is required to appease {thirst}].
If it means 'after' then Lambden and Fananapazir's translation
makes sense. I prefer the former, because this makes clear the
parallelism:

[O people,
eat no more than your hunger
and drink no more than your thirst]. -SM

Inan has taken Hj` in the sense of appease(d) rather than
slumber - that is, he thinks like me that is the appetite which is
put to sleep not the whole person - but has assumed that the
appetite can be appeased with food, not with drink. My
dictionary in fact does not give an example of Hj` being used for
appeasing thirst, but I have supposed that it can.
I suppose the second phrase might also mean `drink no {alcohol?
medicine?} beyond what is required for the remission {of a
disease}'. I rule both of these, and the L&F translation, out
because the neat parallel in the sound and structure seems to
require something correspondingly aphoristic and matching in the
meaning of the two phrases.

The rest of the text more or less defeated me, and I have nothing
regardless of whether they can agree among themselves. The first
part is:
ni`m |lrry|Dtu `l| |lkhal|`i bH| taqwa| |l|` `D|`u

which did defeat me entirely, for reasons to complicated and
embarrasing to go into. The alternatives are:
Inan: how wonderful is mortification of the flesh/self disciple
control
L&F: how beneficial is exercise when one's stomach is empty,
for through it the limbs become strengthened.
and in the Sen McGlinn variant it might have something to do
with divorcing one's wife at her expense, or taking a holiday in
Tunisia, or engaging in riotous behaviour. Something is
wonderful, but what?
Just to give an idea of the problems, Khall`a (adjective) means
"wild, unruly, wanton, shameless or impudent", but as a noun
with a feminine ending it means dissoluteness etc. and also, in
Tunisian usage, recreation in the country or a summer vacation. I
bet that it turns out to have something to do with a camel.

As for the second phrase, there is another kind of parallel
construction:
wa `nd |l| mtl|` d|Hytu dHm|`u

`inda is "at, near, by, with, etc
tl` is to crane the neck - but is apparantly used here for
'stretched' or bloated (??)
daHiya is either a smart fellow or a calamity, (the latter in this
case, and
daHiya daHma' (black calamity) is common expression for a
big calamity.

The best that can be done (by me at least) is assume that there is
a parallel-but-contrary construction, and read it as L&F have - or
something vaguely like that.

Now, will someone who really knows what they are doing in
And could a Persian expert transliterate and parse the sentence
about fear and anxiety pertaining to women in the same tablet:
Majmu`a-yi Alwah-i Mubaraka, Wilmette 1981, Page 226, top
line. If you don't, I'll get a damned dictionary and do it myself,
and that will be really painful for afficionados to endure.

Sen

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sen McGlinn                           ph: 31-43-3216854
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: Tue, 13 Feb 96 15:34:29 EWT
From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
Subject: singing and apologies
To: talisman@indiana.edu

I cannot sing "Why Do We Wait" at Bosch because Derek still has not sent me the
music!

Burl may have fallen all over himself apologizing to everyone from the
President to the caretakers of his magnificent gardens, but he has yet to
apologize to me.  My score card says that I am entitled to 578 apologies from
him.  I am collecting at Bosch.  Linda

P.S. Derek, I am receiving private postings from Talismanian women.  They all
seem to want the suits so keep sewing.  What a wonderful support group I have
going here!

=END=

Date:        Tue, 13 Feb 96 16:38:12 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: re: defending Jamsheed

Human communications is a funny and precarious thing, and its
amusing (or tragic) to see, either in my own marriage after 27 years
(or was it 28), or on talisman. I'm not any better, but perhaps we can
realize that our own limitations cause considerable distortion to the
intended message, and then the sender has to try to explain and re-
explain. I'm referring to postings which repeat what was said, or by
the response which seems sometimes to miss the point, at least as I
UNDERSTOOD IT.   (PARDON CAPS - CAN'T EVEN THINK OF RETYPING)

ONE EXAMPLE IS THE RECENT POSTING OF TONY (MEMBER), WHICH MADE VERY
GOOD SENSE EXCEPT THAT IT WAS NOT THE POINT OF AT LEAST THE MAJORITY OF
THOSE WHO ATTEMPTED TO DEFEND JAMSHEED. EVERY WORK CAN BE CRITICIZED
AND MADE TO LOOK BAD IN SOME RESPECT. JAMSHEED IS NOT TELLING BUDDISTS
WHAT TO BELIEVE, ANY MORE THAN WILLIAM SEARS IS TELLING CHRISTIANS IN
HIS "THIEF IN THE NIGHT." THEY ARE SIMPLY REFLECTING (A) BAHA'I WORLD
VIEW AS FOUND IN THE WRITINGS OF BAHA'U'LLAH. IT REPRESENTS A
PARTICULAR PERSPECTIVE WHICH IS TRUE AND IRREFUTABLE - THOUGH NOT
NECESSARILY IN THE EVIDENCE THEY USE TO SUPPORT THAT WORLD VIEW.

TONY IS ALSO RIGHT IN SAYING THAT IT IS PRESUMPTUOUS FOR BAHA'IS TO
PRESUME TO TELL BUDDIST WHAT THEY SHOULD BELIEVE ABOUT THEIR OWN
RELIGION. BUT AS IT TURNS OUT IT IS NOT PRESUMPTUOUS FOR GOD. AND
THE WRITERS WHO HAVE BEEN MENTIONED FOR THE MOST PART DO NOT SPEAK OF
THEIR OWN AUTHORITY. JAMSHEED'S BOOK I FIND A VALUABLE REFERENCE,
BUT LIKE MOST OTHER BOOKS I DON'T READ IT AS IF IT WERE
FREED FROM ERROR. IT REPRESENTS A BAHA'I VIEW FILTERED THOUGH
THE LIMITATIONS OF THE AUTHOR, WHO I AM SURE WOULD NOT CONSIDER
IT COMPLETE OR ERROR FREE. BUT AS FAR AS THE TRUTH GOES, I KNOW FROM
THE BAHA'I WRITINGS THAT THIS BOOK IS CLOSER TO THE TRUTH THAN SO
MANY OTHERS WRITTEN BY BUDDISTS AND NOTED SCHOLARS, SIMPLY BECAUSE
IT HAS BEEN WRITTEN IN LIGHT OF THE BAHA'I WRITINGS.

AS FOR BEING TIRED OF IT, ITS AN UNDERSTATMENT. GIVE THE GUY A BREAK.
IT'S IRONIC TO ME THAT ON TALISMAN, WHERE THERE SEEMS TO BE A
FIXATION ON FREE SPEECH, THAT I'M HEARING PEOPLE SAY HE SHOULDN'T BE
ALLOWED TO WRITE SUCH A BOOK. OK, CRITICIZE HIS SCHOLARSHIP, BUT DON'T
CONDEMN HIM TO "QUACKERY" OR "IMMORALITY" OR OTHER UNPARDONABLE SINS,
AND LET'S NOT SAY THE THESIS IS IMMORAL. PERSONALLY I THINK THAT THIS
RATHER EXTREME CONDEMNATION IS REFLECTING ONE OF THE SECULAR SOCIETIES
EMERGING POLITICALLY CORRECT VIEWS MORE THAN IT DOES ANY BAHA'I VIEW,
THOUGH TACT AND SENSITIVITY AND HUMILITY BEFORE OTHER RELIGIONISTS IS
A BAHA'I TEACHING.

I THINK WE MIGHT ALL READ TODAYS POSTING RE UHJ ON EMAIL FORUMS AND
START FROM THE BEGINNING - IF I CAN SAY THAT AS A NEWCOMER. IT SEEMS
EVERYBODY IS RIGHT TO SOME DEGREE, SO LETS AGREE WHERE WE CAN AND TRY
TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO IMPLEMENT THE DIVINE PROCESS OF GETTING AT THE
TRUTH AND TRY TO FIGURE OUT GOD'S WILL IN THE MATTER, AS I UNDERSTAND
TO ADOPT HIS WILL RESPRESENTS OUR HIGHEST POTENTIAL.
WARMEST REGARDS TO ALL TALISMAN SUBSCRIBERS
RICK HARMSEN, BIG RAPIDS, MI.

=END=

Date: 13 Feb 96 14:01:05 U
From: "Dan Orey"
Subject: Dr Burl - dogs and cats
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Subject:                               Time:1:53 PM
OFFICE MEMO          Dr Burl - dogs and cats                Date:2/13/96
A student of mine asks _ why do dogs and cats not like each other?

This of course is close to many important questions posed to both Sherman AND
talisman, I look forward to your ideas - regards - Daniel

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 15:08:09 -0700 (MST)
From: "[G. Brent Poirier]"
To: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Cc: Talisman

On Sun, 11 Feb 1996 Sen.Mcglinn@RL.RULIMBURG.NL wrote:

> Brent,
> it was en passant, a sly reference to the structural role of
> the learned, in the sense of experts, in the ordering
> of a baha'i society. The posting was about 23 january, and began
> as follows:
> ----------------------------------------------------------------
> aaaaah hem (tentatively)
> I suppose this will show my ignorance, but I wonder if I have
> understood Jim correctly on a few points regarding law. I hasten
> to say I don't belong to the honoured and imitable company of
> lawyers:
>        `But amongst the lawyers he who guardeth himself, ... it
>        is incumbent on the people to follow him...' (Travellers
>        Narrative page 70)

The translations make all the difference.  The Master is quoting
Baha'u'llah.  In TN the quote reads as you have above.  The same  passage
is in Tablets of Baha'u'llah pp. 96-97  and reads:  "Righteous men of
learning  who dedicate themselves to the guidance of others and are freed
and well guarded from the promptings of a base and covetous nature are,
in the sight of Him Who is the Desire of the world, stars of the heaven
of true knowledge.  It is essential to treat them with deference....
Happy is he that followeth them."

In TN this quote follows (from a Hadith):
"So likewise in describing the lawyers of the latter time He says:
'The lawyers of that time are the most evil of lawyers under the shadow
of heaven:  from them cometh mischief, and unto them it returneth.'"

Now, before you all finish falling on the floor saying "That's about
right," I will quickly point out the Guardian's translation of the same
Hadith..... Oh.  That *is* the Guardian's translation.

No ... wait a minute!  Here it is:

"A day shall be witnessed by My people ... whereon there will have
remained of Islam naught but a name, and of the Qur'an naught but a mere
appearance.  The doctors of that age shall be the most evil the world hath
ever seen.  Mischief hath proceeded from them, and on them it will
recoil."  PDC 99

As to your question will there be lawyers in the new world order.  Well,
at present, there is a great shortage of lawyers in the Faith.  We need
advisors for Assemblies who own properties, believers with their estate
plans, we need work on evaluation and classification of the Writings and
laws.  From time to time a Baha'i represents jailed Baha'is in Muslim
countries.  These lawyers did not get their courtroom experience
representing such noble souls; they had to represent the people of the
earth as they are today.  In much the same way the psychiatrists of today
have to deal with the rampant illnesses of the day in order to get their
experience and credentials, in order to assist the cream of society to
international lawyers, immigration lawyers to get the Baha'is out of
refugee camps, etc. etc.  Al Hall, who taught Fred Mortenson, tried over
1000 cases to juries.  Alfred Lunt also was a skilled trial lawyer, and
without him we wouldn't own Green Acre today.  Louis Gregory worked  as a
lawyer for the Tennessee Valley Authority.

My own view of the more distant future is that as the Baha'is and
institutions mature, and people acquire the attribute of the angels (cop
to it when you are in the wrong, without an argument) lawyers will not be
used to minimize the wrongs of their clients.  I think there is a need in
general for legal training for LSA members.  We have to learn how to
organize and correlate the laws; apply the conduct to the law; look at the
whole matter with a spiritual eye; apply pure justice first -- if mercy is
appropriate, add it in later.  The LSA members also need to learn to not
be swayed by whose version they hear first; don't make a decision till
you've heard everything.  That's a hard skill to keep in mind.  I think
that the institution of the Learned might have a role in advising LSA's on
application of law -- taking a look at the whole situation.  I don't
think we'll ever have attorneys or advocates in the  role of today's
courtroom lawyers, representing one side.  We might have somebody more
objective as an expert to help both sides to come closer to agreement on
what happened and how it should be dealt with.

I  compare this to the Houses of Justice which are a blend of executive,
judicial  and legislative.  Since you don't have a balance of power,
checks and balances working against one another among the institutions, I
think that likewise the legal experts will not be taking sides.

Brent

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 14:22:37 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Fwd: singing and apologies
To: talisman@indiana.edu

---- Begin Forwarded Message

I cannot sing "Why Do We Wait" at Bosch because Derek still has not
sent me the
music!

Burl may have fallen all over himself apologizing to everyone from the
President to the caretakers of his magnificent gardens, but he has yet
to
apologize to me.  My score card says that I am entitled to 578
apologies from
him.  I am collecting at Bosch.  Linda

P.S. Derek, I am receiving private postings from Talismanian women.
They all
seem to want the suits so keep sewing.  What a wonderful support group
I have
going here!

Dear Talismanians
The music to 'Why are we waiting" was sent by UPS to the Walbridge
Manor House. The problem is two-fold the UPS man is frightened of Linda
and never leaves the packages either at their door or places it in a
persons hands. The other side of the problem is that Linda is waiting
for the wrong song some reseacher. I understood Linda you were keeping
a dance card for the Bosch Mysticism Conference. You want me to make
the Ninja suits with support padding exactly where in the garment one
might enquire?
Kindest Regards
Derek Cockshut

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 16:11:57 -0700 (MST)
From: "[G. Brent Poirier]"
To: Talisman
Subject: lack  of footnotes in the Texts

Abdu'l-Baha quotes from a Tablet of Baha'u'llah as follows on p. 70 of
Travelers Narrative:

"And if any person deny these traditions, the establishing thereof is
[incumbent] on this Servant; but since [Our] object is brevity, therefore
the detail of the authorities hath not been submitted."

FYI

Brent

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 14:45:31 -0900
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Dear Drs. Burl and Uncle Derek: Why Folks Write So Much?

Dear Dr. Burl and Dr. Uncle Derek:

I am getting to the point where I find myself deleteing many messages
without reading them. I love to be able to read all the messages posted, but
time is short and depite popular belief I do have a life. It is impossible
for me to read, understand, and think about ALL the messages posted on Talisman.

1. I am scared that I might be punished in the next world for my sins on
Talisman.

2. I wonder if I might miss some "previously unrevealed" tablet because I
deleted it before I realized what I was doing.

3. Masha'llah folks write so many and such long messages that I might have
to buy an IBM  mainframe to be able to deal with Talisman traffic. Can you
suggest an algorithm on how to delete messages; i.e., by sender, date, or
subject? So far I have been deleteing messages by those that write the most
and read those that write seldom, and when they do, there is something of
consequence and meaningful in their messages. Of course, I always read your
posts without exception.

4. It seems that there are folks on Talisman that all they do is write for
Talisman. Although I am very grateful for their effort, yet they must
realize that the traffic is very heavy and some modesty and brevity is
called for.

What do you think?

Miserably yours,

Lost in Ozone with no time

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 18:47:39 -0500 (EST)
From: jwalbrid
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Thee and thou

In defence of Star Trek, the Quakers were notorious for misusing "thee"
and "thou," usually reversing them, I think.

john walbridge

=END=

To: osborndo@pilot.msu.edu
Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Re: Qiblih - WWW page
Date: 13 Feb 1996 16:53:20 GMT

Don and All -
My guess on this is that it doesn't make any difference which 'method' one
uses at this point.  One can either determine the great circle route or use a
'flat earth' direction.  My reason for beliving this is the fact that
Baha'u'llah has permitted the use of clocks in determining the time for
prayers and that we use Mar 21 for Naw Ruz.

Don C

He who believes himself spiritual proves he is not - The Cloud of Unknowing

=END=

To: jrcole@umich.edu
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Re: Questions on Translating Original Texts
Date: 13 Feb 1996 16:53:10 GMT

> this sort of rule has been made for bureaucratic
> considerations, without any consultation of professional academics and
> translators.

Juan -
I have been told otherwise, tho' I don't have any documentation at hand.  I
was told that Shoghi Effendi initiated the policy in the 30's because of the
poor translations being made into the European languages from the original of
material which he had translated into English.

As far as changing the policy, it appears to me that it has only been
relatively recently, say the last 10-15 years, that there has been a
sufficient number of Baha'is with the appropriate background to begin
re-thinking this policy.  One problem is, I suggest, whether to say that the
policy should be changed for *all* languages or only certain languages.  For
instance, are there currently individuals qualified to make translations into
the Slavic languages?  My personal opinion is that in general these
translations should be the result of consultation between several qualified
individuals; and I doubt that this situation exists for many of the languages
of the world.  Otherwise, I think it would be too easy for the same type of
problems to arise in those translations that you and others have pointed out
in some existing translations.

That being said, perhaps it is time for you and a few others to develop and
submit some suggested criteria for changing the situation.

Don C

He who believes himself spiritual proves he is not - The Cloud of Unknowing

=END=

Date:        Tue, 13 Feb 96 18:56:29 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: re: into re new member

Dear Arsalan:
Thank you for your cheerful welcome in what sometimes feels like
a war zone. I couldn't help noticing that you were from Alaska.
My wife and I lived there from 1971 to 1974.
God bless, Rick
ps. I couldn't help wondering if the memorable verse at the bottom
of your post was there all the time, or if it was added for the
occasion. (who me paranoid?#**!?) Love to the friends in Alaska!

=END=

From: "K. Paul Johnson"
Subject: Re: Fwd: "The Work," the Fourth Way, Claymont, etc.
To: Member1700@aol.com
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 16:12:14 EST
Cc: Talisman@indiana.edu

This one is too tempting to let slip by.  Initiates of
Theosophical Masters has fairly extensive treatment of
Gurdjieff and Ouspensky, as well as the Babi/Baha'i tradition,
in light of Theosophical connections.

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 20:47:41 -0500 (EST)
From: jwalbrid
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Translation, etc.

1. Translation.  If English is to be used as the usual intermediate
vehicle for translations, it would make sense to use a different kind of
translation--one that was very literal, not necessary felicitous in
English, and with lots of notes to guide further translators.  I would be
horrified if someone used one of my translations of a text of Baha'u'llah
as the basis for a translation into French or German--or worse, a
non-European language.  I am very well aware of the compromises that have
to be made in a translation, and the optimal solution in English might
not be the best solution in another language.  Still at this point, there
probably is no good alternative to doing most translations through
English.  At least for European languages, there probably are legitimate
concerns about maintaining some uniformity of terminology between related
languages.

2. Qiblah: If it is any comfort, the Muslims had and have the same kind
of troubles.  Their solutions are not always consistent.  Currently in
America, they are divided between those who look at maps (including some
prominent, elderly Ayatollahs) and those who understand globes.  In the
past a variety of things were done, some, but not all of which used the
great circle qiblah.  In medieval Egypt they apparently just aligned
mosques the same direction that the old temples were aligned--in the
direction the sun rose on the first day of winter.

john walbridge

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 17:37 PST
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Dear Drs. Burl and Uncle Derek: Why Folks Write So Much?
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

>Dear Dr. Burl and Dr. Uncle Derek:
>

>. I wonder if I might miss some "previously unrevealed" tablet because I
deleted it before I realized what I was doing.

Yes. I once deleted Tablet of the Cranky Radical  and was  most
depressed. I later discovered it was not authentic.

>Can you suggest an algorithm on how to delete messages;

The algorithm method doesn't work. That is why there are so many
Catholics.  It is a major sin to delete a message after reading the first
third, a minor sin to delete without reading, and the debate still rages
about screening to prevent reception of sent messages -- is a message a
message the moment it is sent or the moment it arrives? Or when you become
aware of it? Or when you acknowledge that it exists. Thorny questions,
indeed.

>It seems that there are folks on Talisman that all they do is write for
>Talisman.

Yes, and the pay is quite good.  I am currently getting five dollars a
word, aren't you?

Dr. Burl

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

From: "Eric D. Pierce"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Tue, 13 Feb 1996 13:43:14 PST8PDT
Subject:       random directions: staying with the rhumb line/ Re: Qiblih...

Hi,

This seems to be a somewhat muddled attempt at relating
compass direction and great circle geometry. Having grown
up in an aviation family, I am familiar with great circle
geometry, and find the argument unconvincing anyway.

Basically, "great circle" means "around the planet", and
"rhumb line" means "over the planet".

Using the conventional "rhumb line" orientation is the
most intuitive orientation, and I'll stick with it. It
is NOT "random" if for any given point on the planet, a
geometrically predictable rhumb line bearing can be made
regardless of compass bearing. Seems that if you have a
straight (in all three dimensions) line that directly
connects two points on the surface of a sphere THROUGH
the interior of the sphere, and then if you imagine a
flat plane that intersects the centerpoint of the
planet and whose flat surface lines on the aforementioned
line through the planet, you get a consistent "rhumb line"
*over* the sphere (planet) at the points where the plane
intersects the surface of the sphere.

If not, I'll just try to approximate the degree off the
spherical surface tangent that I should face down toward
the surface of the planet when directing myself during
prayer so that my prayers follow the straight line through
the planet, instead of "over" it.

On the other hand, if I was in an airplance flying the
exact great circle route to the Baha'i World Center, I
would probably face directly toward the front of the plane
during obligitory prayer!

Ha.

EP

BTW, Mark, your messages seem to get chopped up, you might
want to check how your email software formats cariage-return/
linefeed characters, or make sure you manually hit the "return"

> From:           Mark Bamford
> To:             "'Talisman'"
> Subject:        Qiblih... What direction?
> Date sent:      Mon, 12 Feb 1996 14:04:21 -0800

>
>
> Picked this up on the Web. Any thoughts?
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Explanation of Great Circle Directions
>
> While prescribing turning to the Qiblih for the Obligatory Prayers,
Baha'u'llah also draws upon a statement from the Qur'an in
> addressing our physical orientation for other prayers:
>
> `To God belong the East and the West; whithersoever ye turn there is
the presence of God. For God is All
>
> Since He draws a distinction between the two types of prayer, it
seems that we really ought to give a bit more thought to the
> specific orientation for Obligatory Prayers.
>
> For those who live a long way from Bahji it is almost always a great
shock when they first learn how counterintuitive the true
> Qiblih direction is from their location. The immediate reaction is
usually to reject the information as being either nonsensical or
> irrelevant. People would much rather turn toward a direction which,
to them, feels like where Bahji should be, than to modify
> their deep-seated beliefs about what direction actually means on a
spherical planet. The result is that Baha'is, over most of the
> world, effectively are turning in random directions when they pray.

...snip

>
> For example, living in Los Angeles, CA USA - following these
instructions, I would be about 7506 miles (12,080 km) away,
Bearing=23 degress, and should approximately turn to the North
North East in

>
>
>
> Yours in the Faith,
>
> Mark Bamford
>
>
>

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 18:54:33 -0700 (MST)
To: Talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: frlw@midway.uchicago.edu, Masumian@mail.utexas.edu,
Noorbakhsh.Monzavi@hibo.no
Subject: Reuters 2/13/96 (fwd)

>    'IRAN' STORIES
>Transmission date: 96/02/13
>  1. 15:37 RUSHDIE URGES EU TO FIND OUT WHETHER FATWA IS DEAD
>  2. 15:08 IRAN, IRAQ TO HOLD TALKS ON POWS, TIES, AT BORDER
>  3. 13:02 FARRAKHAN SAYS U.S. MOSLEMS LOVE IRAN'S REVOLUTION
>  4. 06:25 EUROPE RENEWS SUPPORT FOR RUSHDIE ON DEATH THREAT
>  5. 03:55 PRESS DIGEST - LONDON-BASED ARAB NEWSPAPERS - FEB 13
>  6. 03:21 PRESS DIGEST - KUWAIT - FEB 13
>  7. 01:22 PRESS DIGEST - UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - FEB 13
>
>=START=   XMT: 15:37 Tue Feb 13  EXP: 5 :00 Fri Feb 16
>
>
> Rushdie urges EU to find out whether Fatwa is dead
> (Recasts with Rushdie appeal, changes dateline)
>    STRASBOURG, France, Feb 13 (Reuter) - British author Salman Rushdie urged
>the European Union on Tuesday to find out from Iran whether it was ready to
>drop its seven-year-old death sentence passed on him for his novel ``The
>Satanic Verses.''
>    Rushdie, speaking on the seventh anniversary of the sentence, told a news
>conference in Strasbourg in eastern France that only EU governments were
>capable of finding out Tehran's true intentions.
>    ``I have just one question for the governments of the European Union.
>    ``Can you tell me whether the Iranian government says the truth when it
>states that it no longer has the intention of carrying out the Fatwa decreed
>against me?'' he said.
>    Over the past nine months, Rushdie said, the Iranian government had
>indicated that it may drop its plan to have the death sentence carried out.
>    In the latest such sign, the Iranian mission in London said on Sunday that
>Iran could drop the Fatwa.
>    The European Parliament, which is meeting in Strasbourg this week, was due
>to vote on Wednesday on a resolution urging the EU's 15 members to take
>practical measures to ensure the Fatwa is dropped.
>    In a statement issued earlier by the EU's current president, Italy, the
>group said: ``On the seventh anniversary of the publication of the Fatwa
>against Rushdie...the European Union renews its demand that Iran abide by
>international law.''
>    Rushdie was sentenced to death in February 1989 by Iran's Ayatollah
>Ruhollah Khomeini, who said the Indian-born author had blasphemed Islam in
>``The Satanic Verses.''
>    A reward was offered to any Moslem who killed Rushdie and although the
>Ayatollah has since died, the Iranian government has not withdrawn the death
>sentence.
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 15:08 Tue Feb 13  EXP: 5 :00 Fri Feb 16
>
>
> Iran, Iraq to hold talks on POWs, ties, at border
>    TEHRAN, Feb 13 (Reuter) - Iran and Iraq will hold talks on Wednesday on
>issues dating back to their 1980-1988 war, including prisoners of war and
>troops missing in action, the Iranian news agency IRNA said on Tuesday.
>    It quoted an unnamed Iranian foreign ministry source as saying delegations
>would meet at a border location for talks ``to discuss obstacles in the way of
>bilateral relations in an effort to normalise Tehran-Baghdad ties.''
>    The daily Iran on Tuesday quoted senior foreign ministry advisor Ali
>Khorram as saying the two countries would exchange lists of prisoners of war
>they were holding.
>    Khorram, who headed Tehran's delegation at talks in Baghdad last May, said
>the countries were involved in efforts aimed at improving relations but
>stressed that ``the efforts had still not led to new achievements,'' the
>newspaper said.
>    Iran says 5,000 to 10,000 prisoners are still held by Iraq. Baghdad denies
>holding any Iranians. Iraq says more than 20,000 Iraqis are held by Iran.
>    The prisoner issue is among the thorniest hindering normalisation of ties
>between the former foes.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 13:02 Tue Feb 13  EXP: 3 :00 Fri Feb 16
>
>
> Farrakhan says U.S. Moslems love Iran's revolution
>    TEHRAN, Feb 13 (Reuter) - U.S. black radical Louis Farrakhan said on
>Tuesday American Moslems loved Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution, the Iranian news
>agency IRNA said.
>    ``Moslems of the United States love the Islamic revolution in Iran and
>always follow up its developments,'' the agency quoted the Nation of Islam
>leader as telling parliament speaker Ali Akbar Nateq-Nouri during a visit to
>the parliament.
>    ``The Islamic revolution represents a perfect model of a system of
>government based on the holy Koran,'' he added.
>    Iranian television quoted Farrakhan as saying:''We will use American Moslem
>unity as a lever of pressure against the arrogant policies of the United
>States.''
>    Iran's ``intransigent attitude toward the United States has been the major
>factor prompting black Moslems to...restore their authentic Islamic identity,''
>Farrakhan was quoted by the agency as telling a gathering of students from 70
>countries attending theology schools in the holy city of Qom on Monday night.
>    Farrakhan arrived in Iran on Saturday with a 35-strong delegation to attend
>celebrations marking the 17th anniversary of the revolution that brought the
>late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini to power.
>    Farrakhan, criticised in the past for his attacks on whites and Jews, had
>earlier visited several African countries.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 06:25 Tue Feb 13  EXP: 6 :00 Fri Feb 16
>
>
> Europe renews support for Rushdie on death threat
>    ROME, Feb 13 (Reuter) - The European Union said on Tuesday it was renewing
>efforts to persuade Iran to drop its seven-year-old death sentence on British
>author Salman Rushdie for his novel ``The Satanic Verses.''
>    ``On the seventh anniversary of the publication of the Fatwa against
>Rushdie...the European Union renews its demand that Iran abide by international
>law,'' the EU said in a statement published in Rome.
>    Italy currently holds the revolving presidency of the EU.
>    The Indian-born Rushdie was sentenced to death in February 1989 by Iran's
>Ayatollah Khomeini, who said he had blasphemed Islam in ``The Satanic Verses.''
>    A reward was offered to any Moslem who killed Rushdie and although the
>Ayatollah has since died, the Iranian government has not withdrawn the death
>sentence.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 03:55 Tue Feb 13  EXP: 3 :00 Fri Feb 16
>
>
> PRESS DIGEST - London-based Arab newspapers - Feb 13
>    LONDON, Feb 13 (Reuter) - These are the leading stories in two London-based
>Arabic-language newspapers on Tuesday. Reuters has not verified these stories
>and does not vouch for their accuracy.
>    ASHARQ AL-AWSAT
>    - GCC demands Iran not interfere in Bahrain's affairs.
>    - 49 Sudanese presidential candidates including Bashir.
>    - Preparation to open Palestinian Islamic Bank in Gaza.
>    - Kuwait's KAC enters into war of fares, expects other firms to leave the
>local market.
>    AL-HAYAT
>    - GCC accuses Iran of interfering in Bahrain's affairs.
>    - Differences threathening future of brotherhood in Egypt.
>    - Palestine for Real Estate Investment signs \$250 million projects in Gaza.
>    - Head of Kuwait's KAC: KAC will lose \$40 million a year because of lower
>fares.
> REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 03:21 Tue Feb 13  EXP: 3 :00 Fri Feb 16
>
>
> PRESS DIGEST - Kuwait - Feb 13
>    KUWAIT, Feb 13 (Reuter) - These are the leading stories in the Kuwaiti
>press on Tuesday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for
>their accuracy:
>    AL-QABAS
>    - Emir: Will and self-monitoring are the basis for building states.
>    - Gulf Cooperation Council concerned over Iran's interference in Bahrain's
>affairs.
>    - The United Arab Emirates calls for reduced oil supplies.
>    - National Investment Company increases its capital.
>    ARAB TIMES
>    - Expatriates pay 20 percent in proposed health cover.
>    - Dole leads Republican field of nine.
>    - Finance industry on alert after Irish Republican Army bomb.
>    - Sino-U.S. copyright talks begin.
>    AL-WATAN
>    - Emir reaffirms in Ramadan speech the importance of embracing religion.
>    - Emir, Crown Prince denounce Bahrain bombing.
>    - Bahrain cabinet approves five-year plan to develop stock exchange.
>    - Jordan will continue to increase interest rates to build confidence in
>currency.
>    KUWAIT TIMES
>    - Head of state urges the youth to step up quest for learning.
>    - Two Bahrainis, one Sri Lankan wounded in hotel bombing.
>    - Higher German jobless rate shakes European economy.
>    AL-ANBA
>    - Emir: State building requires will, self-monitoring.
>    - Manama: Hotel bombers will pay.
>    - Dollar falls slightly against yen.
>    - OPEC produces 26 million bpd in January.
>    AL-SEYASSAH
>    - Emir: Our hope is in building people.
>    - Saudi-Yemeni wish to develop common ties.
>    - Sharp rise for U.S. shares, Dow up 40 points.
>    - Norway could cooperate with OPEC if Iraq returns to oil markets.
>
>=END=
>
>=START=   XMT: 01:22 Tue Feb 13  EXP: 1 :00 Fri Feb 16
>
>
> PRESS DIGEST - United Arab Emirates - Feb 13
>    DUBAI, Feb 13 (Reuter) - These are the leading stories in the United Arab
>Emirates press on Tuesday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not
>vouch for their accuracy.
>    - GCC Secretary General urges Iran to respect sovereignty of other states
>in the region.
>    - President receives well wishers.
>    - Acting oil minister: no privatisation of Emirates Petroleum Co.
>    - ADNOC seeks 3 billion cubic feet of gas daily by 1999- magazine.
>    AL-BAYAN
>    - Peres adamant on Golan referendum.
>    - ADNOC draws a five year plan.
>    - Great success expected for ADIPEC 96 show in Abu Dhabi.
>    AL-KHALEEJ
>    - Arab, foreign economic delegations visit Baghdad.
>    - Libya suddenly imposes 100 percent customs on Egyptian products.
>    - GCC custom duty unification committee to complete categorisation soon.
>    GULF NEWS
>    - Major pledges to pursue peace.
>    - New look Emarat station opens.
>    - Oman plans gas projects worth \$4 billion.
>    KHALEEJ TIMES
>    - Major firm on poll proposal.
>    - GCC slams Iranian statement on Bahrain.
>    - Foreigners rushing to Iraq for business deals.
>    - Iraq's return not to hit oil prices: Rakad.
>  REUTER
>
>=END=
>
>
>
>

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 21:45:01 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: "Michael R. Moum"
Subject: Re: Welcome to talisman

>Welcome to the talisman mailing list!
>
>11. A custom has developed on this list--based, it seems, on Maori
>etiquette--that new participants should introduce themselves at some
>point with a brief biography.
>
Although I dislike talking about myself, this I will do.  However, we are
leaving tomorrow for Winter School in North Dakota (for those of you who are
wondering why anyone would want to go there in the winter,  I was born and
lived the first 40 years of my life there and haven't seen Baha'i friends
for a long time) so the biography won't appear for about a week.

Until then,
Michael Moum (mmoum@inwave.com)
Beloit, Wisconsin, USA

God made religion and science to be the measure,
as it were, of our understanding.
Take heed that you neglect not such a wonderful power.
Weigh all things in this balance.
(`Abdu'l-Baha:  Paris Talks, page 145)

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 23:12:10 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Fwd: Dear Drs. Burl and Uncle Derek: Why Folks Write So Much?
To: talisman@indiana.edu

---- Begin Forwarded Message
We are still waiting for the check from your first consultation.

Dear Dr. Burl and Dr. Uncle Derek:

I am getting to the point where I find myself deleteing many messages
without reading them. I love to be able to read all the messages
posted, but
time is short and depite popular belief I do have a life. It is
impossible
for me to read, understand, and think about ALL the messages posted on
Talisman.

Dear Miserable
The vast majority on Talisman do not understand what they write and you
are worried about reading it and undrstanding it. Be a man and become
an Economist.

1. I am scared that I might be punished in the next world for my sins
on
Talisman.

The punishment for the sin of being on Talisman is being on Talisman.

2. I wonder if I might miss some "previously unrevealed" tablet because
I
deleted it before I realized what I was doing.

The payment of your regular monthly check to the Derek and Burl
Patagonia holiday ensures all unrevealed or shortly to be revealed and
translated Tablets we forward to you.

3. Masha'llah folks write so many and such long messages that I might
have
to buy an IBM  mainframe to be able to deal with Talisman traffic. Can
you
suggest an algorithm on how to delete messages; i.e., by sender, date,
or
subject? So far I have been deleteing messages by those that write the
most
and read those that write seldom, and when they do, there is something
of
consequence and meaningful in their messages. Of course, I always read
your
posts without exception.

Deleting is allowed in the Faith on E'Mail, in certain cases it is a
praiseworthy act. DR. Burl is using one Sandy Fotos to conduct a survey
on deleting basically looking for the top ten deleters or deletions.She
has shown herself as being able to have good intution on the rascal
nature of unsavoury types. This will be available and you can delete
those.The following I always delete this is in sup/rtie/http script.
[=;18769(\$%@!#~%.>?'{]~!@%^&^*()_+)_):"}{.
Iam sure you would delete those anyway.

4. It seems that there are folks on Talisman that all they do is write
for
Talisman. Although I am very grateful for their effort, yet they must
realize that the traffic is very heavy and some modesty and brevity is
called for.

What do you think?

I believe one should be modest in ones beach attire, there is no
justification for brevity in that.DR.Burl mentions he receives \$5 per
word he jests naturally, the going rate is \$20 per word and double on
Fridays.The traffic is heavy you might want to try public transport

Miserably yours,

Lost in Ozone with no time

Please get a life and buy a watch like the rest of us.

As always delighting in your misery.
DR.Uncle Derek

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 01:58:14 -0500 (EST)
From: Cheshmak A Farhoumand
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: cjohnnid@gmu.edu, kdawson@gmu.edu, dmunoz@gmu.edu, slindsey@gmu.edu,
petrarolha@turing.unicamp.br, mmagnani@zeus.csr.unibo.it,
mbagha@capaccess.org, sbarton@ccmail.va.grci.com, afirouza@gmu.edu,
rkaufman@gmu.edu, ppakhavan@aol.com, foqia%quaidian@sdnpk.undp.org,
khisbiyay@woods.uml.edu, iking@nsf.gov, smaclise@awinc.com,
Subject: HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!! (fwd)

OOPS! By the way, the poem is from Khalil Gibran.

bye

cheshmak

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 21:41:40 -0800
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: margreet@margreet.seanet.com (Marguerite K. Gipson)

Ok, what on earth is this Adam Smith day???  I don't want to be out in the
cold during the Mystical conference, and want to bring appropriate attire to
this thingy...

Margreet

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 01:13:41 -0500 (EST)
From: Cheshmak A Farhoumand
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Cc: cjohnnid@gmu.edu, kdawson@gmu.edu, dmunoz@gmu.edu, slindsey@gmu.edu,
petrarolha@turing.unicamp.br, mmagnani@zeus.csr.unibo.it,
mbagha@capaccess.org, sbarton@ccmail.va.grci.com, afirouza@gmu.edu,
rkaufman@gmu.edu, ppakhavan@aol.com, foqia%quaidian@sdnpk.undp.org,
khisbiyay@woods.uml.edu, iking@nsf.gov, smaclise@awinc.com,
ashk.farhoumand@utoronto.ca, m.nicolini@dundee.ac.uk,
Subject: HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!!

HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY! HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY! HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!

Here we go again!! Dear friends of the world.

If he must know the ebb of your tide,
let him know its flood also.
For what is your friend that you should
seek him with hours to kill?
Seek hi always with hours to live.
For it is his to fill your need, but not
And in the sweetness of friendship let
there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures.
For in the dew of little things the heart
finds its morning and is refreshed.

Wishing you all a happy day of joy and togetherness with your loved ones

Cheshmak Farhoumand

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 02:16:04 -0500 (EST)
From: Jonah Winters
To: talisman
Subject: Zaids' Thesis

Greetings, folks. I asked Zaid if I can post this letter of his to
Talisman, and he said yes. I think that his thesis topic sounds
fascinating, and perhaps people may have commments. Speaking of which,
let me thank the cybercommunity for the active and interesting discussion
last month on "eroticism" and mysticism. I found it most helpful for my
paper.  -Jonah

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 10:39:38 +0100
From: Zaid Lundberg
To: Jonah Winters
Subject: My Thesis

We've been on vacation for a week and changed our email-adress, that's why I
unsubscribed, but it is good to be back. The topic of my M.A. thesis is
"Baha'i Apocalypticism: the Concept of Progressive Revelation." In brief,
the general hypothesis of my thesis is: The apparent contradiction and
dichotomy of continuity/finality of revelation is, according to the
principal authors of the Faith, a matter of interpretation. Both views are
seen as equally valid, but are reconciled and integrated into the concept of
Progressive Revelation. This concept views the specific revelation as an
organic system i.e. it is interconnected, cyclical, and evolutionary.

The following are my subhypotheses: 1) the concept of
Apocalypticism/Revelation is multidimensional, (very much like the concept
of religion), 2) the Concept of Progressive Revelation is a central concept
or theme in the Faith: in the writings it is described on basically two
levels, one "esoteric" which is sanctified from the limitations of
time/space, i.e. essential unity of the Manifestations of God (which I lable
"Texts of Identification"), and one "exoteric" which is manifested in the
realm of time/space, i.e. the station of diversity between the
Manifestations of God and their specific revelations (which I lable "Texts
of Elaboration"), and 3) the concept of Progressive Revelation is unique to
the Faith, although partial similarities may exists in other religions and
could possibly have influenced it.

In my M.A. thesis I will not deal with the 3:rd part but save it for my
Ph.D. diss., where I will (superficially) look at the possible influences
from e.g. Islam (Shi'i), Manichaeism, Christianity (Mandeism), Judaism, and
Zoroastrianism. If possible, I will (superficially) trace the historical
origins of the concept of Progress, and indicate the evolutionary theories
during the 1700-1800's.

Shal-OM Shanti Shanti

Zaid Lundberg

=END=

From: HICKC89
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Wed, 14 Feb 1996 11:46:40 +0000 (GMT)
Subject:       Re: Qiblih - WWW page

Well,
I must admit I regard the whole subject as rather amusing.
Perhaps to confuse the issue, one would also like to note that the
earth is not a sphere as such, due to distortion around the axis of
rotation (rotational acceleration), more like a squashed sphere, and
that our concept of a "straight-line", should in the general case,
take account of the gravitational space-time distortion, because a
straight-line is only such in a "flat-universe" scenario and we must
use the more general case of geodesics.
Darach Watson,
UCD,
Dublin,
Ireland.

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 23:54:36 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Defending Jamshed Fozdar!

Tony,

> "Anyway, while I am grateful that Bruce Burrell would use his
considerable scholarly skill and knowledge to write a critique of
Fozdar's books from a Buddhist perspective, and while it should be
obvious here to any reasonable person that his critique is thoroughly
devestating, I don't see any point in going further." <

Thank you for saying so. It will be interesting to see if Jack thinks so.
As you may see in my msg to Richard Logan I have gone just a bit
further, simply because I putting together a text for Steve and it seemed
like a good place to use the info I am keying in. But you are quite
correct, there really is not much more that needs to be said about
Fozdar, but Momen's book on Buddhism....

Bruce B

=END=

From: dann.may@sandbox.telepath.com
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 21:52:05 -0600 (CST)
Subject: NEW BOOK FROM WHITE CLOU
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Steve, please send me the following titles:

1.  SAGA: BEST NEW WRITINGS IN MYTHOLOGY edited by Jonathan Young (\$14.95,
15% DISCOUNT). Isn't there also a similar title dealing with new writings
in religion? Please send that as well.
2.  Creation and the Timeless Order of Things: Essays in Islamic Mystical
Philosophy, by Toshihiko Izutsu (Retail \$16; Sale price \$11.20)
3.  The Green Sea of Heaven: Fifty ghazals from the Diwan of Hafiz (Retail
Sale price \$10.47)
4. Spirit Brides by Kahlil Gibran, translated by Juan Cole ((Retail \$16, S
\$11.20)

Please bill me. My address is: Dann May, 904 Marston Drive, Edmond, OK
73034-3248, (405) 359-1677.

Warmest greetings, Dann May, Philosophy, OK City Univ.
---
* WR 1.32 # 669 * We must overcome the ignorance of our own ignorance.

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 07:51:16 PST
Subject: When the cat's away....
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Hey, everybody, LuAnne just said she is going to unsubscribe while
she goes off to Sunny California, the land of oranges, dates and the
Mysticism Conference and now is our chance to talk about her while
she's gone.

We could settle on a name and career plans for the baby and not have
to bother with any grumpy feedback from an unappreciative mother.We
could take over and really do this thing the right way, the guy way.

I'll save all postings and advice for her. She's asked me to assemble
a collection for her when she gets back.

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/13/96
Time: 07:51:16

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 07:57:31+030
To: "K. Paul Johnson"
From: dpeden@imul.com (Don Peden)
Subject: Re: Superseding Jesus?
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

During the same time frame, Christianity has
>diversified into competing fundamentalist, liberal metaphysical,
>adventist, Mormon, etc. avenues and has generated a vast body
>of scholarship on Jesus and Christian history.  Which of these
>is really expressing the spirit of renewal associated with the
>idea of Christ's return?  To Baha'is, Christianity's greatest
>weakness is its internal diversity and historical ambiguity.
>But to me, that is its greatest strength.  This parallels the
>argument between Marxism/Leninism and capitalism:
>decentralization and diversity win out over centralized control
>and uniformity.

Dear Paul:

I wish the diversity in Christianity was constructive in nature...however,
in my experiences here in Africa where there are so many "diverse groups"
you can not name them all, it has fostered extreme prejudice, one Christian
against another, which is carried on in a vindictive, violent fashion.  It
results in power struggles, politics being dominated by religious
affiliation, persecutions between Christians over differing doctrines,
education and economic opportunities being controlled by Christian religious
affliations, etc., even death.  It is, to my way of understanding, not
fulfilling the mission of Christ.  When Baha'is see the diversity of
Christianity as being a disadvantage, I think this is the part they are
looking at.

I think you do a disservice to both Christ's teachings and Baha'u'llah's
teachings to limit them with political models.

>2.  Jesus, while not in my view a unique and exclusive savior,
>does have qualities that raise him above the other Western
>avatar figures.  His empathy vs. purity message is more
>clearcut and consistent, as well as compelling, than anything
>Zoroaster, Muhammad, the Bab, Baha'u'llah or the Hebrew
>humanity in general.  His direct manifestation of spiritual
>charisma, via healings and highly charged speech, just has
>greater impact than any other figure in Western religious
>history.  There is a universality in Christianity that has made
>it more adaptable to a wider variety of cultural contexts than
>any other faith; a lot of this is due IMO to the universal
>appeal of Jesus himself.  Passages like the Lord's Prayer and
>the Sermon on the Mount have an ability to lift the soul that
>cannot be denied even by non-Christians.

The word of God is always inspiring to me, regardless of the path it comes
through.  I am glad you have found such comfort and inspiration from
Christ's teachings and person.
>
>3.  The promise of Christianity is greater than that of any of
>its competitors (with the possible exception of Sikhism, which
>is very similar in essence).  Not salvation as an escape from
>hell, purchased by his crucifixion-- that's a tale for
>children.  But rather, direct intimate relations with the Father through
>the Way shown by one who came to know his own oneness with the
>Source.  The transcendent God of the theologians and the other
>Western religions is not the warm personal presence that is
>promised by Jesus; Muhammad and Baha'u'llah would never dream
>of saying "greater things than these shall ye do."  Quite
>simply, the spiritual rewards of following Christ are greater--
>at least as promised-- than are those of obeying some Messenger
>or Manifestation who is always telling you how far God is above
>you and how much you need some authority figure to tell you
>what to do.  And the costs to one's integrity and self-respect
>are far, far less.

I am so glad you feel that you have found a path which is rewarding to you,
and which you feel you can approach with love.
>
>None of this takes into account the objections of Indic or Far
>Eastern religions to Christianity.  Of course it has all the
>negative features of all the Western religions: ecclesiastical
>authority punishing people for independent thought and action,
>spiritual snobbery, you name it.  But those things are not
>attributable to the essence of Christianity IMO, but are rather
>signs of how much it has been subverted.  Buddhism starts out
>with a head- rather than heart- based message, and to a certain
>extent is therefore "higher."  But only in the later Mahayana,
>in which compassion becomes the ruling motif, does it become
>satisfying to the whole being, IMO.  Christianity evolved in
>the opposite direction, starting with a heart-message from a
>Jewish mystic but absorbing Greek metaphysics and thereby

It is good that you recognize the human interpretation of revelation as
being subject to fraility.  So it is with Baha'is...our human interpretation
and implimentation falls quite short of the revealed Word itself...that is
why we keep struggling to improve our understanding.  It is very difficult
to combine head and heart in the right balance, isn't it?  And it keeps
changing according to the circumstance of the moment.
>
>Stray thoughts for consideration.
>
>

Love,

Bev.

=END=

Date: Tue, 13 Feb 1996 23:58:36 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
Cc: coleman@olimp.irb.hr

Richard C. Logan,

> "But I must say Bruce that your reaction to his scholarship and
motive are off the mark." <

I do not believe I have commented on his motivation. Damdifino what
it is other than what seems obvious is that he is trying present Buddhism
in a Baha'i light because that is what he thinks is true. As for my
reaction to his scholarship being off the mark, hardly, for the reason he
demonstrates no scholarship.

Let me put this to you: I am nice to my dog, I don't poke people with
pointy sticks, I am generous to others with my time, quite giving, and
I am as open minded as anyone I have ever met. Now, I have a
particular view about Baha'u'llah and his mission that is not necessarily
what Baha'i views him and it as being. I write a book on my view of
Baha'u'llah in order to prove it. The interpretations of Baha'u'llah's
texts I give have nothing to do the Baha'i tradition, because I know that
the true meaning of Baha'u'llah's technical terms and concepts are to be
found in my perspective, not the mistaken Baha'i perspective, and
because I know what I say is true I am quite willing to use faux
Baha'u'llah texts to show that Baha'u'llah does say what I say he says.
Despite the fact I am a nice guy in every way, I rather doubt that you
or any other Baha'i would find my approach convincing, and I suspect
that you would be concerned about the ethical implications of my
approach. Rightly so, and it is little different from Fozdar's approach.

> "Mr. Fozdar is in no way attempting to do a hatchet job  on
Buddhism--Mr. Fozdar is a champion of Buddhism." <

He has an odd way of showing it. I think it might be more correct to say
that he a champion of his view of Buddhism.

> "His purpose has been in my view--to set aside the cultural and
liguistic differences between the Aryan and Semetic discourse and
attempt to show that the subject of "Truth" which in my estimate is
fundamental to Buddhist discourse, is the same for all religious

A noble aim, I guess, but how does one meet this purpose? Let take a
look at what Fozdar does:

In BUDDHA MAITYRA. page 118, Fozdar states:

"At this juncture one may question whether Siddharta [sic] believed in
such an immortal soul, and the answer is an unequivocal 'Yes.' We have
only to refer to refer to the various Scriptures including the Pali Canon
to see Siddharta's clear assertion the He came to teach of the abundant
life of the immortality of the soul."

He immediately quotes this text:

'The doctrine of the conquest of self. O Siha, is not taught to
destroy the souls of men, but to preserve them.'

This is also quoted on page 55 of GOD OF BUDDHA, where he

"It is of interest to note that the Buddha here specifically acknowledges
the existence of the soul and also states that His doctrine is to ensure the
immortality of the soul.'

Fozdar cites this text as coming from the Pali text the Mahavagga VI 31,
but of course as I am sure you've already guessed, it really comes from
Carus' GOSPEL OF THE BUDDHA, chapter LI, verse 26, which is
very clearly labeled in Carus' table of reference as an explanatory
addition, "EA." And this is not an isolated incident. Fozdar make much
use of this material. In BMA, the second dedication page, and pages 1,
7, 21, 35, 44, 47-8, 62, 64, 77, 103, 118, 130, 131, 153, 180-1, 193,
199, 208, 417-18, 430, 432, 462, and 484; and pages iii-iv, 12, 23, 24,
25, 49-50, 59, 66, 67-8, 73, 74-5, 76, 87, 111-13, 128, 131, 139, 148,
and 154 of GB we find texts quoted as Buddhist texts that are not.

And this is not insignificant material in the amount or in the significance
Fozdar places on it, for in many instances he bases is arguments on this
stuff. If it were a couple of instance, one could easily dismiss it, but
given the extent of it and how it is done, there is no doubt Fozdar could
not have but known. Even if we could grant that these texts are accurate
reflections of Buddhism (but we really cannot), it is still a serious
problem.

Now for a quick example of how Fozdar handles legitimate Buddhist
texts. On page 20 of GB and BMA 185 Fozdar quote a passage from
Edward Conze's translation of the Diamond Sutra (Vajracchedikasutra).
For our purposes all we need do is look at the very last line.

"Because an Absolute exalts the Holy Persons."

In both GB (passim) and BMA (22, 41, 50, 60, 68, 76, 359) we see
Fozdar allude this sentence with some frequency. In GB page 20 he
states of this text:

'The above is further proof that, in reality, it is not a source of study or
proficiency in religion (dharma), which makes Buddhas, but a bestowal
of grace from the "Unconditioned" -- an _exaltation from the Absolute
upon the Holy Persons_. ... [this passage] also affirms the existence of
the _Absolute_ to be the "exalters of the Buddhas" ... [which is contrary
to the] wishful conclusions [that] have been drawn by Buddhists or
foreign scholars implying that Buddhism is a religion which admits of
no supernatural revelations....'

And in BMA 185-6:

"And, as He [the Buddha] also asserts, the mechanism of revelation of
this universal law to humanity through the medium of the Buddhas is an
exaltation from the Supreme. ... It is a bestowal of Grace of by the
Unconditioned."

Absolute is, of course, god for Fozdar, and there is no discussion of the
traditional understanding of Holy Persons by Fozdar. For him this word
simply means the Buddha and other "Manifestations of God." Don't you
meaning is and why you are offering a radically different meaning?
Don't you think that if you are going to offer a radically different
meaning for a well established term, that you should give a careful and
persuasive argument for it? It isn't there in Fozdar's books. What we
have with Fozdar is eisegesis rather than exegesis.

The Sanskrit for this text is:

_asamskrta prabhavita hy arya-pudgala_.

Asamskrta is the same as the Pali word asankhata, which as I have
carefully shown in an earlier msg is a word equivalent to nirvana, and
it carries the meaning of being free from the conditions of hatred, greed,
and ignorance. Prabhavita is, as Edward Conze points out, a word rich
in meaning: "are glorified by," "owe their distinction to," "derive their
dignity from," "produced, "brought forth from," or characterized by."

Arya-pudgla, holy persons, classically is understood as those individuals
who have experienced enlightenment, the freedom from the conditioning
of greed, hatred, and ignorance, from the initial experiences of what
is called a "Streamwinner" to the full enlightenment of the Buddha.

In a related text there is a related passage (this group of texts continually
mirror each other):

"All these have been brought forth from [prabhavita] the Unconditioned
-- Streamwinners, etc. to fully enlightened Tathagatas [Buddhas]."

Our text can easily be translated as "The Holy persons owe their
distinction to freedom from the conditioned." In other words the
traditional Buddhist view is that Streamwinners to Buddhas, the Holy
Persons, are owe their distinction to, are glorified by, are brought forth
from, derive their dignity from, are produced by, are exalted by, and
are characterized by their freeing themselves by their destruction of the
conditions of greed, hatred, and ignorance. There is no god here, nor is
there a revelation by a god here. And contrary to Fozdar's unsupported
contentions, anyone who practices the teaching of the Buddha can
possibly become a Holy Person. And there any number of texts that can
brought to bear to show that the Buddha's enlightenment is not
revelation from a god, but the result of his own effort. I'll quote just
one:

-------

'Two things, o monks, I [the Buddha] came to know well: not to be
content with good states of mind, so far achieved and to be unremitting
in the struggle for the goal. Unremittingly, indeed, did I struggle and I
resolved: "Let skin, sinews and bones remain; let flesh and blood in the
body dry up: yet there shall be no ceasing of energy, manly energy,
manly effort!"

'Through heedfulness have I won Enlightenment, through effort have I
won the unsurpassable security from samsaric toil.

'If you, O monks, will struggle unremittingly and resolve: "Let skin ...
[as above] manly effort" -- then you, too, O monks, will soon realize
here and now, through your own direct knowledge, that unequalled goal
of the holy life." AN II ii 5.

--------

Eisegetical assigning of meaning for terms that have long established
meanings has no place in genuine scholarship or in understanding of
another tradition, and this is typical of Fozdar throughout both his
books.

It is very easy to pick passage after passage in Fozdar's books, and to
show what he says they say, and then do a careful exegesis which will
show that Fozdar is simply wrong, that he is not reflecting the text and
the tradition with any semblance of accuracy.

Again, none of this has to do with how Fozdar treats his dog, or how
he deals with the rest of the world. My focus is that these books are
very problematic.

Bruce B

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 96 23:35:22 PST
Subject: Veils of Learning.
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Talking with LuAnne today about the veils of learning and remembered
this story, an old jewish joke.

A man, a Jew,  comes to town on business and it's Friday night. His
last customer, also a Jew, says to him, "It would be a crime for you
to be in town, a Jew, and not have a place to go for the Sabbath. I
insist you come to my house for dinner. The man accepts.

After dinner and an hour or so of delightful conversation, his host
says to him, "You must cancel your hotel reservations and stay with
us tonight. We have a guest room and it would be a crime for you to
stay in a hotel when you could be staying with a Jewish family." And
so the traveler obliges.

Next morning they have some breakfast and go to the Synagogue. After
the Sabbath service, they go back home for a light lunch. Of course
these meals are all part of the Sabbath, which means they have been
pre-cooked and no one has to work on the Sabbath to prepare them.

After lunch the man is about to leave and his host says, before you
leave, I want to give you this, and he presents him with a bill for a
Sabbath dinner, a breakfast, a lunch and a night's lodging. The
traveler is outraged.

The host says, "Well, the only thing to do is take our dispute before
the Rabbi."  They take the issue to the Rabbi who listens and then
says to the traveler, "Pay the man what you owe him."  The traveler
is even more outraged but writes a check and hands it to the man.

Outside the Rabbi's office, the man turns to the traveler and gives
him back the check and says, "Here, keep it. I couldn't possibly

"If you didn't want my money, why did you give me the bill and then
take me before the Rabbi."

The host answer him. " If I just told you, you wouldn't believe me.
So I had to demonstrate to you what a schmuck we have for a Rabbi."

(It's a wonderful story and seemed appropriate to something on
Talisman but at the moment I can't remember what.)

Philip
-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/13/96
Time: 23:35:22

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Wed, 14 Feb 1996 09:03:50 EST
Subject:       HAPPY DAY ...

Happy Celebration Day to all,

I am not one of those folks who is into those days, whatever they
are. Mother's Day, Father's day, Secretaries Day, Day this and Day
that. It is all to pump artificially economic activity. Wasting
immeasurable amount of Earth's resources just to say I love you honey!

Give me a break. Imagine the environmental impact of this activity.
the State of the World 1991. After WWII our everso smart economists
activity to meet the spiritual and psychological needs of people.
Wow! what a success. After 50 years 90% of the baby-boomers are lying
on shrinks' beds,
most are on legal and illegal drugs. While they are at work making
money to pay for all those appreciations days, their children are
warehoused in child care centers, they mothers and fathers are
warehoused in
nursing homes and retirement centers. The spiritual condition of the
country needs no mention. The economic condition? Well you know the
story.I can go on an on. God gives the people the leaders they
deserve. Hmmmmm!!! Watch for things to come and fasten your seats.
Call me the Grinch that stole your  Valentine if you
so wish. I never liked these days and never will. My ex-husband was
amazed. No diamonds, chocolates and flowers for me please, just
honesty and true love is all I need. Ain't no fool for the world.
Of course, the Holy Days are wonderful!! They are spiritually
fulfilling. They are worth living in. They are not *man-made*.

lovingly,
quanta

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Wed, 14 Feb 1996 09:15:30 EST
Subject:       Re: Fwd: Dear Drs. Burl and Uncle Derek: Why Folks Write So

Dear Derek,

You said, half of the people on talisman don't know what they are
writing. Which half are you part of? Do you know? It also depends on
how much you weigh. Wow! the boat is sinking in this corner,
please move to the center please. That's where the coffee is to get
the brain going on in the morning  Salutations to Bosch! Sorry,
could not come, but I am sending lots of pictures with  Farzin.
Pictures of past and present talismanians. Some people from Europe.
Surprise! Surprise! My Golly Molly Surprise!!

love,
quanta

=END=

From: "K. Paul Johnson"
Subject: Re: Superseding Jesus?
To: Don Peden
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 9:32:24 EST
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Bev-

Thanks for a fascinating post!  It's easy to be enthusiastic
about diversity when you don't know the details, I see.  Of
course one sees awful developments within Christianity in the
US, too-- Koresh and Jones for example.  But I had hoped that
African Christianity, which is the main growth market at this
point, had not developed in such an ugly way.  Would you say
this is a continent-wide problem or located in specific places?

Cheers
Paul

=END=

From: coleman@olimp.irb.hr
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 16:20:52 MET-DST
To: TALISMAN@indiana.edu
Subject: New York! New York!

An opera star here in Croatia wants someone to either E-Mail  or Fax :
1-385-41-711-692 (attn: Neven) the words and music to "New York! New York!
May we have your advice, info , referrals or whatever on this song for
our opera star, Neven, who became a Baha'i not so long ago.?
Jack Coleman, Croatia

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 09:44:38 PST
Subject: Dr. Burl
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dr. Burl,

I hate to be a word usage whistle blower -- and this has nothing to
do with the fact that I agree with much of what he says -- but Bruce
Burril actucally said "what we have here is eisegesis rather than
exegesis."

Perhaps it is related to his propensity to spell "Burrill" with all
those extra letters, compared to the fresh, direct, and charmingly
unaffected form which you use.

Any suggestions?

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/14/96
Time: 09:44:38

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 18:59:09+030
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: dpeden@imul.com (Don Peden)
Subject: unsubscribe

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 08:08:14 -0800
From: derekmc@ix.netcom.com (DEREK COCKSHUT )
Subject: Fwd: Re: Fwd: Dear Drs. Burl and Uncle Derek: Why Folks Write So
To: talisman@indiana.edu

---- Begin Forwarded Message

Dear Derek,

You said, half of the people on talisman don't know what they are
writing. Which half are you part of? Do you know? It also depends on
how much you weigh. Wow! the boat is sinking in this corner,
please move to the center please. That's where the coffee is to get
the brain going on in the morning  Salutations to Bosch! Sorry,
could not come, but I am sending lots of pictures with  Farzin.
Pictures of past and present talismanians. Some people from Europe.
Surprise! Surprise! My Golly Molly Surprise!!

love,
quanta

My dear Qanta:
I informed Misery that the vast majority do not read what they post A
happy day to look forward to when half read what they post.We look
forward to receiving the Rogues Gallery photographs we will not display
them upon receipt of monies for the Derek and Burl Patagonia Holiday
Fund.Please remember to send treats for Sherman and Bobo otherwise
Farzin, whoever he is, might be in danger of annoying two Pussy Cats.
The song you mentioned is:'Good Golly Miss Molly'sung by the old Rocker
himself Little Richard. Linda thinks that Miss Molly is a relative of
Miss Manners but she adores Mantovani and Barry Manilow. By the way
Creation, Annis. I hear he is still waiting on the runway at Sydney
Airport for the hundreds of girls to fly in for him . Ahmad they all
changed their minds and went to Disneyland together and had a great
time sorry about that old chap.
Kindest Regards
Derek Cockshut

=END=

Subject: WWW & info on Iranian Baha'is?
To: bahai-st@jcccnet.johnco.cc.ks.us, talisman@indiana.edu,
Noble-Creation@bcca.org
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 11:32:52 -0500 (EST)
From: "Donald Zhang Osborn"

Allah'u'Abha!  I am seeking info on (1) a WWW site on the persecution of
Baha'is in Iran, (2) the electronic location of a concise bibliography on the
same subject, and (3) references on development in Baha'i communities in Iran
(e.g., there was an article in _Herald of the South_ a few years ago).  This
would be helpful in correspondence on these subjects in the wake of the
announced death sentence.  Thanks in advance for any help on these subjects.
Don Osborn      osborndo@pilot.msu.edu

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 11:54:39 -0500 (EST)
From: Jackson Armstrong-Ingram
To: "[G. Brent Poirier]"
Cc: talisman

I don't know if you are familiar with magistrates' courts in Britain, but
I've often thought that the role of specialists in relation to assemblies
is somewhat akin to the magistrate's clerk in these courts.  The bench
consists of lay magistrates who have the responsibility and authority but
the clerk, who has legal training, is there to advise on the law and to
make suggestions as
asked or as they think needed but without authority to make decisions or
responsibility for anything other than the quality of their advice. Over
time magistrates develop a fair knowledge in areas they deal with
frequently, but the clerk is always available when something less
common comes up.

Jackson

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 12:46:12 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Fwd: Writings on punctuality?

I am forwarding this inquiry in the hopes some of the friends may have this
answer for the NSA of South Africa.  Thanks.  Muhtadia Rice, Los Angeles

Subj:   punctuality
Date:   Tue, Feb 13, 1996 8:23 AM PST
From:  nsa.sec@pixie.co.za
X-From: dm000014@pixie.co.za (Nsa Secretariat)
Sender: Bahai-Announce-x@Bounty.BCCA.Org
To: Bahai-Announce@BCCA.Org (Baha'i Announce)

Does anyone know of any quotes in the writings referring to
punctuality and the need for punctuality?  If so, I would appreciate
the references.  Many thanks.

Shohreh Rawhani, Secretary

National Spiritual Assembly
of the Baha'is of South Africa

Tel: +27 11 487-2077/2099
Fax: +27 11 487-1809
email: nsa.sec@pixie.co.za

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 09:03:19 -0900
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: What does the Covenant mean to you?

Dear Fellow Travelers,

Recently there have been several mentions of the Covenant from different
perspectives. I do believe that if we were able to arrive to a common
understanding of the meaning and significance of the Covenant, life would be
much more enjoyable and rewarding on Talisman. This could be a starting
point for further discussions.

Often I hear that the Covenant has been used to force someone into
compliance. Horror stories abound. Regardless of past issues, the Covenant
is ALL we have. Can we leave all the hurt feelings aside and in love and
unity discuss this subject that may very well be the one and only common
denominator we have?

=END=

From: Sen.Mcglinn@rl.rulimburg.nl
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 18:58:52 +0100 (MET)
To: bahai-discuss@bcca.org
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

26 July - 3 August 1996

at Ardingly College, (south of London, close to Gatwick airport)

for 12 years upwards, classes in:

Creative photography: tutor, Mark Sadan (USA)
Writers & Publishers: tutor, Wendi Momen (UK)
Dance: Joseph Houseal (USA/UK)
Graphic Design - press/tv/multi-media: Peter Maguire (UK)
Painting from within: Hoda Mazloomiah (USA)
Dancing minds - philosophical inquiry: Roger Prentice (UK)
Vocal music - ensemble & choral: Maria & Matthew Freeman (UK)
Stage management - a prodution will be staged at the academy: Marianne Cross
(UK)
Stage Light and sound - setting up, operating, checking for faults: Tom Fox
(UK)
Stage acting: auditions invited/staging of a funny musical play: Maureen
Melville (UK)
Total theatre -in practice from Artaud to Beroff: Annabel Knight & Omid
Djalili (UK)
Hand, eye & mind - practical & theoretical exercises -> greater awareness of
contemporary art-making: Sonja
van Kerkhoff (The Netherlands).

COSTS: from 120 English pounds upwards for the full 8 days including board
and food.
BOOKINGS BEFORE MAY 30th 1996

West Sussex, BN16 4AJ,
United Kingdom, tel: 44 - 1903 - 771529

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 09:43 PST
To: belove@sover.net
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Dr. Burl

>
>Dr. Burl,
>
>I hate to be a word usage whistle blower -- and this has nothing to
>do with the fact that I agree with much of what he says -- but Bruce
>Burril  said "what we have here is eisegesis....

Dr. Burl, theological wizard, says:  Bruce is playing another funny word
game.  eisegesis!  Don't you get it?  "I see Jesus."
Bruce is really a closet Christian who has been pulling your absolutist leg
all this time.

BB

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 11:45:01 -0500
From: "Ahang Rabbani"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: The Appointed branch

[This message is converted from WPS-PLUS to ASCII]

Jackson wrote:

> I don't know if you are familiar with magistrates' courts in Britain, but
> I've often thought that the role of specialists in relation to assemblies
> is somewhat akin to the magistrate's clerk in these courts.  The bench
> consists of lay magistrates who have the responsibility and authority but
> the clerk, who has legal training, is there to advise on the law and to
> make suggestions as asked or as they think needed but without authority
> to make decisions or responsibility for anything other than the quality
> of their advice. Over time magistrates develop a fair knowledge in areas
> they deal with frequently, but the clerk is always available when
> something less common comes up.

It seems that this is precisely the role that assistants to ABM, and
in fact the entire Appointed branch, should be playing:  To be
available to advise the Assemblies on non-trivial matters.

A number of things are needed for this to become a reality, though:

1.  appointment of at least one assistants for each LSA

2.  availability of information to the appointed branch.  Previously
I've argued in favor of sharing LSA minutes with AABMs and ABMs, and
regular, scheduled meetings with them to review progress.

3.  better training of ABMs and AABMs.  Currently, ABMs have the
responsibility of training AABMs.  Often these trainings are simply
deepening sessions on the latest messages from the World Centre.  As
worthy as that is, the poor AABMs walk away with no better idea how
to advise the LSAs on non-routine matters.  That requires a
different sort of training than currently available.  Of course,
ABMs themselves need serious training which they are not receiving
presently.

In short, currently the Appointed branch is not doing anyone a favor
by being under-manned, uninformed, and untrained.  And they won't be
effective or taken seriously until these shortcomings are addressed.

regards, ahang.

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 13:27:01 EWT
From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
Subject: the Ninja suits
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dearest Derek, you are all consideration - but just a little dense.  It is
groups of support that I requested.  You know, sew a little group here and a
little group there and it will all work out in the end.  If you are making one
jaw so it won't wag so much.

I've putout nails on the driveway so that when the UPS truck comes, I will have
the opportunity to dig through the packages to find all the ones that belong to
me and that he has never (the truck driver, I mean() bothered to deliver.
There must be dozens of them!  Love, Linda

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 12:38:56 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Dr. Burl

At 09:43 AM 2/14/96 PST, you wrote:
>>
>>Dr. Burl,
>>
>>I hate to be a word usage whistle blower -- and this has nothing to
>>do with the fact that I agree with much of what he says -- but Bruce
>>Burril  said "what we have here is eisegesis....
>
> Dr. Burl, theological wizard, says:  Bruce is playing another funny word
>game.  eisegesis!  Don't you get it?  "I see Jesus."
>Bruce is really a closet Christian who has been pulling your absolutist leg
>all this time.
>

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 13:42:04 EWT
From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
Subject: to Miserable
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Don't do it Miserable in Alaska.  This Derek and Burl Patagonia holiday fund is
a fraud.  I've checked it out with the Better Busienss Bureau.  Talsiman is
harboring crooks but there doesn't seem like anything can be done about it!
Just pray for protection.

Linda

cf

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 13:53:06 EWT
From: LWALBRID@cluster.ucs.indiana.edu
Subject: Paul's posting
To: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Paul, I don't think that Baha'is do feel this great distance between
themselves and the spiritual world as you seem to suggest in your posting.
While Baha'u'llah does talk about a transcendent and unreachable God, there is,
I believe, a very personal connection that is made during prayers.  Baha'is, at
least from Christian backgrounds to whom I have spoken, talk about envisioning
Baha'u'lah or Abdu'l Baha when they pray.  Christians who become Baha'is
generally transfer their affections for Christ and perhaps for saints, to the
Central Figures of the Baha'i Faith.  Comparable things are no doubt done in
0tall religious traditions; that is, when one converts from one religion to the
Baha'i Faith.  As for Muslims, in many Islamic societies local saints are made
the centers of devotional life.  In Shi'ism, the Imams - especially Ali and
Husseyn, become focal points for intense emotional attachments.

(Sorry for all the typos.  Having computer problems.)   LInda

address and I owe you a message.  Thanks.  LInda

t dou

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 13:15:55 -0600
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: Bruce Burrill
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels

Richard C. Logan,

What an untterly fascinating attempt at trying to explain away Fozdar. It is
simply mind boggling. And I do find it of interest that you've completely
ignored Fozdar's passing off as Buddhist texts stuff that he had to know isn't.

When I have more time I give this msg a longer response.

Bruce

=END=

From: "Mark A. Foster"
Subject: Re: Dr. Burl
To: belove@sover.net
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 13:14:49 -0600 (CST)
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

Philip -

Bruce's use of "eisegesis" was not a typo. As contrasted with exegesis
(which simply refers to interpreting specific passages, often implying
that the hermeneutician can discern the intended meaning), eisegesis is
particular viewpoint. Therefore, a Roman Catholic and a Baptist might
interpret a particular verse, different historians a certain historical
event, or a several sociologists a population in quite different ways.
Does that mean that one is "right" and the others "wrong"? Not
necessarily, but some people might want to argue that only a single
interpretation would be acceptable.

To the Light,

Mark (Foster)

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 12:56:38 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Bruce Burrill" , "Talisman"
Cc:

Dear Bruce,

I have to say I admire the effort and energy that you have put into =
your studies.  I only wish more Baha'is showed your diligence.  As a =
Baha'i I believe everyone IS a Baha'i and everyone IS a Buddhist, =
also.  The difference is in *understanding* and somehow I think you =
would agree--of course I really can't speak for you, but it seems =
reasonable to say that the  "mechanics of realty" is the most thorny =
subject we know of.  But everyone on this planet is in agreement in =
one form or another that there IS a mechanics to reality.  I have =
been convinced that the real religion is the religion of the "Human =
Being".  There can be IMHO no doubt that this is what Baha'u'llah and =
the Buddha taught.  The disagreement on the mechanics I believe is =
what Mr. Fozdar, however unsuccessful, was attempting to illuminate.  =
For Baha'is there simply is no dogma because mere mortals cannot =
claim omniscience, nor can they claim to have understood in all its =
fullness the message of the Tathagathas.

> As for my
>reaction to his scholarship being off the mark, hardly, for the reason he
>demonstrates no scholarship.

Please allow me to clarify myself on this point which was unfairly =
stated.  My meaning was that by your definition he may not be a =
scholar--but others may not feel the same.

>He has an odd way of showing it. I think it mig

>t

Probably it could be said that none of us is anything more than a =
champion of our own view.  I know that this is true of myself.  I =
don't mind admitting it.  But I really believe because I know him =
that he is very sincere in his desire to articulate the Buddha's =
message in a cross-cultural form.  I also wouldn't underestimate his =
insight into the Buddha's message.  Ahang has suggested, and I =
believe quite rightly, that his methodology is in consonance with =
that of Indians, in particular, and Easterners in general.  His =
attacking style of logic is highly prized in his culture and the =
cutting clarity is considered a sign of the depth of his insight.  =
Westerners, in general, do not value an aggressive style of =
presentation,  and I'm not recommending it either.  But I must admit =

>Absolute is, of course, god for Fozdar, and there is no discussion of the
>traditional understanding of Holy Persons by Fozdar. For him this word
>simply means the Buddha and other "Manifestations of God." Don't you
>meaning is and why you are offering a radically different meaning?
>Don't you think that if you are going to offer a radically different
>meaning for a well established term, that you should give a careful and
>persuasive argument for it? It isn't there in Fozdar's books. What we
>have with Fozdar is eisegesis rather than exegesis.

Addressing the subject as you suggest, would be in my opinion another =
book.  A cross-cultural discussion (however in effective it may be)   =
rather than a centric discussion of the truth of a matter is becoming =
more the standard now than the exception. Thus such a book  might be =
the book you would prefer to be written, but people should, I think, =
write *their* book.  The approach you suggest, though, should be =
taken by some one qualified to take it, and in more ways than one.

>Eisegetical assigning of meaning for terms that have long established
>meanings has no place in genuine scholarship or in understanding of
>another tradition, and this is typical of Fozdar throughout both his
>books.

I don't believe modern theological scholarship holds with what you =
are saying because a "cross-cultural higher criticism" so to speak, =
is gaining a great deal of acceptance in intellectual circles albeit =
in the more radical ones.  I have no complaint with traditional =
cultural based forms of scholarship but it seems that they start from =
the premise that there is not an underlying view as "Humans" that has =
actuated the diversity and that we should some how be seeking the =
"right view" which from where I stand (No offence intended) is =
Quixotic.  I believe everyone is in a relative position to =
reality--this does not mean that nothing is discoverable but that we =
should not be attached to our own view in order that we may grow in =
understanding.

I must say, I am impressed with your seriousness--I too am trying to =
be serious, though, I do not possess your knowledge.  All I can do is =
try and be a philosopher in good faith.  I hope you feel I did =
justice to your remarks as I tried my best.  I apologize for anything =
that may appear as disrespectful to your philosophy.

One Human to another

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 11:54:57 -0800
To: milkman@ibl.bm (Alec Bourne), talisman@indiana.edu
From: margreet@margreet.seanet.com (Marguerite K. Gipson)
Subject: Re: Tattooless in Seattle (& everywhere?) (fwd)

At 03:15 AM 2/12/96 -0400, Alec Bourne wrote:
>
>I've been told, that somewhere in the aqdas.. it is said that we should not
>make ourselves into objects for the amusement of others < massive
>paraphrasing here> and that this has in turn
>been interpreted as, do not tattoo, or pierce, or modify your body.. such
>that it becomes something of amuzement to others..  I suppose this would
>also mean do not dye, bodybuild, have reconstructive surgery either??

Ok, Wait just a minute here... No where in the Writings does it say we can't
dye, bodybuild, have reconstructive surgery... As one who used to
bodybuild... to the point of obsessive behavior, ( but Baha'u'llah took care
of that for me) I used body building to make my mis-shapen body more  normal
to at least purchase clothes,  but to also build confidence too.  I met lots
of people during those years, and taught the Faith, but like most, some
Bodybuilders take it to extreme, and that is what they live for.   I dated
one of the men for a few weeks, but all he was interested in was making
those biceps ( or someother part of his body)  1 more inch bigger...   17
inches just was not big enough... He could not wear dress shirts!

There is nothing wrong with, IMO, 'enhancing' one's attributes to the
extent of moderation, but to cross that line, is another matter.  Body
building workouts relieved a lot of stress for me... and it was good
exercise for me too...  I, as a women have to be 'healthy' to bear 'healthy'
children.  As you all know, pregnancy is a 'killer' on the figure, and the
actual childbirth/labor is intensive, so one has to be 'in good shape'.

When it came down for me that it was an OB, I was placed in a car accident
situation, where I did \$3,500.00 damage to my car, and another \$3,000.00
damage to me.  My right shoulder gives me some problems, but a trip to the
massage therapist... once I start back to work, does the trick.   I believe
the key word here is moderation in all things***...  I would like a
tattoo...  now you know my secret, but as a single woman, will wait a few
more years before attempting such a feat...  I want a rose on my back
shoulder blade area... I don't wear skimpy shirts so it would never show in
public, but,  I would not want to freak out any possible 'male'
suitors/husbands  if I do it now.

***There is a women who has had 39 (?) surgeries to become like "Barbie"
yes the doll... And she is scheduled for more...
I wonder if she is happy yet?

Happy and Joyful,
Margreet

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 11:57:15 -0800
To: belove@sover.net, talisman@indiana.edu
From: margreet@margreet.seanet.com (Marguerite K. Gipson)
Subject: Re: When the cat's away....

Gads, is this the PG one?? And she is going to the Mysticism Conference....
When is her due date?    I only hope she is not having that baby while
there.  We'll just set up the dining (delivery) table in the back, so she
won't miss a thing.  Then we can all take turns assisting with the
breathing, and we can all 'groan' with the contractions...  Won't that be a
kick?  We can name the baby Mysty, or Misty Bosch Hightower for a girl, and
for a boy, Bosch Mystic Hightower...

Gads, she will kill me...  you will all find out if I return after next
Sunday late nite arrival of my plane... I will send out a message...

God love ya,
Margreet

At 07:51 AM 2/13/96 PST, belove@sover.net wrote:
>
>Hey, everybody, LuAnne just said she is going to unsubscribe while
>she goes off to Sunny California, the land of oranges, dates and the
>Mysticism Conference and now is our chance to talk about her while
>she's gone.
>
>We could settle on a name and career plans for the baby and not have
>to bother with any grumpy feedback from an unappreciative mother.We
>could take over and really do this thing the right way, the guy way.
>
>I'll save all postings and advice for her. She's asked me to assemble
>a collection for her when she gets back.
>
>Philip
>
>
>-------------------------------------
>Name: Philip Belove
>E-mail: belove@sover.net
>Date: 02/13/96
>Time: 07:51:16
>
>This message was sent by Chameleon
>-------------------------------------
>Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
>Einstein
>

=END=

From: belove@sover.net
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 15:19:34 PST
Subject: Re: Dr. Burl
To: belove@sover.net, "Mark A. Foster"
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu

Dear Dr. Burl,

On Wed, 14 Feb 1996 13:14:49 -0600 (CST)  Mark A. Foster wrote:
>Philip -
>
>Bruce's use of "eisegesis" was not a typo. As contrasted with
exegesis
>(which simply refers to interpreting specific passages, often
implying
>that the hermeneutician can discern the intended meaning...

It appears that Mark did not catch the subliminal message in
eisegesis and, poor fellow, is now speaking to me as a
hermeneutician.

This has something to do with cosmotology, right?

Philip

-------------------------------------
Name: Philip Belove
E-mail: belove@sover.net
Date: 02/14/96
Time: 15:19:34

This message was sent by Chameleon
-------------------------------------
Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
Einstein

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 15:21:41 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Dialog, Arguments and Quarrels
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Bruce Burrill" , "Talisman"

>And I do find it of interest that you've completely
>ignored Fozdar's passing off as Buddhist texts stuff that he had to know
>isn't.

Please exuse me on this--of course you are right.

I should have commented and I will.  I simply felt that I could not
fairly comment on the disposition of the case without persuing as
detailed an investigation into the facts as you have.  My alternative
would have been to either speak out of ignorance on a subject that we
both agree requires considerable scholarship or yield also out of
ignorance to your position neither of which I can as a Baha'i do.  I hope
you can grant me that much.

I admit you have the force of fact on your side at this time, but as I
heard a lawyer once say--wait for the cross examination.  If you will
write a critique or if you already have that uses a proper dignity in its
address to Mr. Fozdar I will personally print it out and forward it on to
him with a complete explanation of your complaint.

Knowing Mr. Fozdar I can't garrauntee that he will respond because he is
very busy but I would very happy to urge that he does in polite fashion.

I know this may not satify you but I don't know what else to say.

Richard

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 12:38:19 -0900
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: When the cat's away....

I bet the cat is going to be happy!!!

>Gads, is this the PG one?? And she is going to the Mysticism Conference....
>When is her due date?    I only hope she is not having that baby while
>there.  We'll just set up the dining (delivery) table in the back, so she
>won't miss a thing.  Then we can all take turns assisting with the
>breathing, and we can all 'groan' with the contractions...  Won't that be a
>kick?  We can name the baby Mysty, or Misty Bosch Hightower for a girl, and
>for a boy, Bosch Mystic Hightower...
>
>Gads, she will kill me...  you will all find out if I return after next
>Sunday late nite arrival of my plane... I will send out a message...
>
>God love ya,
>Margreet
>
>
>
>At 07:51 AM 2/13/96 PST, belove@sover.net wrote:
>>
>>Hey, everybody, LuAnne just said she is going to unsubscribe while
>>she goes off to Sunny California, the land of oranges, dates and the
>>Mysticism Conference and now is our chance to talk about her while
>>she's gone.
>>
>>We could settle on a name and career plans for the baby and not have
>>to bother with any grumpy feedback from an unappreciative mother.We
>>could take over and really do this thing the right way, the guy way.
>>
>>I'll save all postings and advice for her. She's asked me to assemble
>>a collection for her when she gets back.
>>
>>Philip
>>
>>
>>-------------------------------------
>>Name: Philip Belove
>>E-mail: belove@sover.net
>>Date: 02/13/96
>>Time: 07:51:16
>>
>>This message was sent by Chameleon
>>-------------------------------------
>>Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -- A.
>>Einstein
>>
>
>
>

=END=

From: "QUANTA  DAWNLIGHT"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Wed, 14 Feb 1996 16:54:30 EST

Adam Smith was a wise old man,
who one day saw an "invisible hand",
said not whom it belonged,
with no rules and regulations.

I am gonna visit him now.
Knock, knock,
"hello Sir, I came to see
"Sure, but he is not well,
oh! what the hell,
can you put him at ease?
"Well, thank you,
I will try".
"Sorry! Dear Mr. Smith,
just wanted to know
which invisible hand
the Hand of God,
or one belong to man,
have you thought so?
Are you happy,
or filled with sorrow?
has wrought.
We are neither free,
nor holding our prize,
of a just economy.

We got some who cannot eat,
others who want lose weight!
Is that what you had in mind?
Ahhh! I see you did not calculate,
folk's desires and greed.
Free-enter-prize, indeed.
I truly apologize,
for causing you any hurt.
I shall redeem myself,
by uttering the Holy Writ.

love,
quanta

=END=

Date:        Wed, 14 Feb 96 16:32:09 EST
From: Richard Harmsen
To:
Subject: what is IMHO/IMO?

Anyone:
Please pardon my (further)ignorance,but if anyone could enlighten
me regarding the use of IMO or IMHO, I'd appreciate it. Is it a
fashionable new word, or is it an ancient name of mystical import?
Thanks. Rick H.

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 96 14:13 PST
To: talisman@indiana.edu
From: burlb@bmi.net (Burl Barer)
Subject: Re: Tattooless in Seattle

Margee says:
There is a women who has had 39 (?) surgeries to become like "Barbie"
>yes the doll... And she is scheduled for more...
>I wonder if she is happy yet?
>
Burl figures:
Pretty soon, God willing. It takes a lot of surgeries to get tiny enough
to drive Barbi's Corvette. But pity the poor "Beautiful Bride Barbie" --
Handsome Bridegroom Ken has no male parts!  I am investing in "Annulment
Barbie" for the day after. She cries constantly and perseverates "I'm so
humiliated, I'm so humiliated" and you pull a string on her back and you
hear "Band of Gold" by Freida Paine.

*******************************************************
MAN OVERBOARD by Burl Barer may be ordered on-line from Book Stacks,
Unlimited or from your favorite book store!
ISBN#1-56901-815-4     \$19.95 Suggested Retail Price
********************************************************

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 17:35:19 -0500 (EST)
From: Jackson Armstrong-Ingram
To: talisman
Subject: Center of Worship

Pilgrim notes may not have binding authority but they are often useful
and interesting.  They also can have a close relationship to written
material.  Often both 'Abdu'l-Baha and Shoghi Effendi later wrote about
topics that they had discussed with pilgrims.  I am posting the following
for
Terry especially, but I hope others also find them thought stimulating.

This is from the Hannen notes of 1909:

Wherever the heart of a believer sincerely worships there is a
Mashrak-el-Azkar, but with the growth of the Cause the outward Temple is
also necessary.

From the Woodcock notes of 1910:

Question: What is the difference between a church and a Mashrak-el-Azkar?

Answer: A church is a meeting house where sermons are preached by paid
preachers, whereas a Mashrak-el-Azkar represents the body of the
Manifestation, from which will radiate the highest religious teaching of
the whole world.  From the Mashrak-el-Azkar praises to God must shine
forth, both spiritual and material.  Divine souls must be gathered around
it -- souls who shine like a sun.  Just as the body of Jesus confirmed
His Manifestation, so will the Mashrak-el-Azkar confirm the Manifestation
of Baha-o-llah.
The most important point is that from the Mashrak-el-Azkar must go forth
not only Spiritual necessities, but also material needs such as
hospitals, schools, orphanages, hospices, etc., etc.

From the Sears' party's notes of 1954:

Ruhiyyih Khanum told Shoghi Effendi that she thought that one of the
pilgrims was being too spiritual, and that the pilgrim should not go up
to the Shrine at dawn each morning but should remain in bed the next
morning and rest.  Shoghi Effendi replied that it is good to be both
spiritually active and administratively active, both spiritual and
material.  This is essential, he said.  We must have both.  Activity he
said, increases spirituality.  But, he added, it is possible to be active
without being spiritual.  We must pray, supplicate, then serve.  We have
our spiritual center, the Shrine, now we are erecting our administrative
center, the auxiliary buildings.  It is like the Temple and its
dependencies.  First the spiritual center, then the social or welfare
agencies where this spirit can be put into operation.  Both are
necessary.  Both, he said, are necessary for the life of the individual,
as well as for the life of the institution or the life of society.

Jackson

=END=

From: "Eric D. Pierce"
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Date:          Wed, 14 Feb 1996 14:44:42 PST8PDT
Subject:       Re: When the cat's away....

Hi,

Career in cosmotology of course: hermeneutician. This is a
female beautician that only does styled hairdoos from a menu:

ouch

> At 07:51 AM 2/13/96 PST, belove@sover.net wrote:
> >
> >Hey, everybody, LuAnne just said she is going to unsubscribe while
> >she goes off to Sunny California, the land of oranges, dates and the
> >Mysticism Conference and now is our chance to talk about her while
> >she's gone.

We are quite proud of our valley "tule fog" here in Sacramento, thank
you, and don't care if the sun doesn't come out for months on end.

There ARE oranges hereabouts. As for dates, I heard that LuAnne's
sister (lives in Sacramento) runs around with someone named Eudora
who likes to get loaded, so there is no telling what will happen in
such company.

We'll try to keep her busy eating bar-b-q between La Maz classes to
thwart any unseemly incidents.

> >
> >We could settle on a name and career plans for the baby and not have
> >to bother with any grumpy feedback from an unappreciative mother.We
> >could take over and really do this thing the right way, the guy way.
> >
> >I'll save all postings and advice for her. She's asked me to assemble
> >a collection for her when she gets back.
> >
> >Philip
> >
> >

:)

EP

=END=

From: SFotos@eworld.com
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 14:59:15 -0800
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Tattooless (tattooed) in Seattle

Dear Margreet,
----------------------------- Begin Original Text
-----------------------------

I would like a
tattoo...  now you know my secret, but as a single woman, will wait a few
more years before attempting such a feat...  I want a rose on my back
shoulder blade area... I don't wear skimpy shirts so it would never show in
public, but,  I would not want to freak out any possible 'male'
suitors/husbands  if I do it now.
----------------------------- End Original Text -----------------------------

Never mind single or not, Margreet.  After all, if a guy has an objection to
an innocent rose, why would you want him anyway?

And isn't the rose an object of spiritual symbolism in our beloved Faith?

Let's go for it.

My daughter, the saintly Helen who name sometimes appears on this proactive
forum, will introduce us to a good tattoo studio near her apartment on
Capitol Hill!!!

And those other closet tatooed-wannabees can eat their hearts out.

Best,
Sandy

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 14:16:02 -0900
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Patterns and a future?

Dear Jim,

By now it is obvious to me that untiy of thought, at least for the time
being, is an impossibility. I very much appreciate your thoughts and
comments. I would like to hear your suggestions on where to go from here. I
am willing to take a different path and be open to new ideas on how to
approach reform from what has been proposed so far. I think a fruitful
consultation amongst several people on Talisman is possible. There may be
those who do not like the ideas put forward, and their input is always
appreciated, but there would be no reason to stop the progress because of
possible criticisms.

Patiently waiting,

Arsalan

"You can present the material, but you can't make me care."

Calvin and Hobbs

=END=

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 14:20:41 -0900
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: to Miserable

Gosh,

I was ging to send some money to the Patagonia fund and smoked salmon for
the conference, but now that these honoured members are plain crooks, to
heck with it.

Miserable

P.S. I think I read somewhere in one of those previously unreavealed tablets
that Smoked Salmon is good for mystics all around. As a matter of fact,
Rumi's diet was strictly based on rice and Smoked Salmon.

>Don't do it Miserable in Alaska.  This Derek and Burl Patagonia holiday fund is
>a fraud.  I've checked it out with the Better Busienss Bureau.  Talsiman is
>harboring crooks but there doesn't seem like anything can be done about it!
>Just pray for protection.
>
>Linda
>
>
>
>
>cf
>
>

"You can present the material, but you can't make me care."

Calvin and Hobbs

=END=

From: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 18:15:39 -0500
To: jarmstro@sun1.iusb.edu
Cc: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject: Re: Center of Worship

Dear Jackson ,

You know how to thrill a mans heart on Valentines day !

I have suggested for several years now that the development and expansion
of the Faith in the world and especialy North America is linked to the
building of the inner and outer Mashriq u l Adhkar .

It is not the role or purpose of administration to accomplsh such things.
I believe the administrative institutions of the Faith will truly mature when
they have something to administer besides their own existence.  The
institutions of worship and service - the MASHRIQ - constitute the spiritual
and institutional *reality * of Abdul Baha , the servant of the  All -
Glorious; the spiritual Center of the Covenant. This is the heart of the
Covenant.

I propse a goal of the four year plan to prepare the way for entry by
troops . Dont worry about LSA's in umpteen more cities . Build Houses of
Worship ( not centers )in the several hundred Bahai communities where
reasonably functional Assemblies already exist and focus on the develoment of
community service activities ( the Dependencies) and a rich devotional life
grounded in the mystical writings of Baha u llah .
Then people will begin to hear and have the *experience * of Bahau llah .
That is where transformation lies .
Jackson ,  thanks for sharing these notes . They exhilarate me as you
rightly suspected . Now as the folks at Nike have said lets "Just Do It !

warmest regards ,
Terry

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Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 17:33:56 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Dear Dr. Burl: The Station of Ashtray Heart
From: "Richard C. Logan"
To: "Burl  Barer"
Cc: "Talisman"

From the Prince of Platitudes to Dr. Burl:

The Captain and I were conversing today concerning "DOC AT THE RADAR
STATION" and he said:

Someone's had too much to think!

uuuuuuuse me

like an ashtray

You (Thou hast) crushed me out!

You (Thou hast) uuused me like an Ashtray Heart!

Ashtray Heart.

Dear Dr. Burl,

I hope Derek doesn't see this secret message because I'm going to have to
subject him and all other churlish knaves to some "ruffian" treatment
soon at Bosch.

PS.  would you like to comment on the station of "Ashtray Heart"?

Hoping to be "crushed out".

signed
The Prince

Richard C. Logan   nineteen@onramp.net
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
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

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From: TLCULHANE@aol.com
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 19:17:07 -0500
To: talisman@indiana.edu
Subject:  Baha u llah's valentine from me

Dear Friends ,

i had thought of doing this during Ayyam i Ha but will probaby be
unsubscribed by then so here here are some of my favorite valentines of Bahau
llah . Sort of my list of  the Beloveds "greatest hits."   Some of which we
have already put to music in Omaha .
" In the Rose Garden of changeless splendor a Flower hath begun to bloom
, compared to which , every other flower is bit a thorn ,and before the
brightness of whose Glory the very essence of beauty must pale and whither."

Say: Step out of Thy holy chamber , O Maid of Heaven , inmate of the
silken vesture of Immortality , and put on , in the name of the All -
Glorious , the embroidered Robe of Light. Hear,  then, the sweet, the
wondrous accent of the Voice that cometh from the Throne of Thy Lord ,the
Inaccessible , the Most High."

" Thus have We illuminated the heavens of utterance with the slendours of
the Sun of divine wisdom and understanding , that thy heart may find peace,
that thou mayest be of thosewho, on the wings of certitude, have soared into
the heaven of the loce of their Lord , the All - Merciful ."

" Were any man to taste the sweetness of the words which the lips of the
All - Merciful hath willed to utter , he would , though the treasures of the
earth be in his possession , renounce them one and all , that he might rise
to vindicate the truth of even one of His comandements, shining above the
Dayspring of His bountiful care and loving -  kindness."

" Happy is the lover that hath inhaled the divine fragrance of his Best-
Beloved from these words , laden with the perfume of a grace which no tongue
can decribe."

" O people of the world ! Build ye houses of worship throughout the lands
in the Name of HIm Who is the Lord of all religions. . .  Then , with
radiance and joy, celebrate therein the praise of your Lord , the Most
Compassionate. Verily , by His remembrance the eye is cheered and the heart
is filled with light."

"  Verily , We desired to bestow Our favor upon thee by mentioning that
which we have seen , so that thou mayest behold a Luminoue world in this dark
world and that thou  mayest realize that We have Worlds within this world ,
and offer thanks to thy Lord, the All -Knowing ."

" When we observed her face, We found a point, belonging to unity, shining
forth from the horizon of her brow, as though through it  the tablets of the
Love of the Merciful in the contingent world , and the volumes of the Lovers
were fully explained. Exalted be Her creator. No eye hath beheld any being
like unto to Her ."

" I was enthralled by light rays from a face
Whose advent dimmed and darkened every star,
As though the sunbeams of Her beauty's glow
appeared and dazzled planets from afar."

" The souls to her reunion, the hearts to her Bestowal  -- as the Most
exalted Lord she       hath come !
This Wondrous Remembrance hath come from the Eternal Rosegarden that
the lovers of the beauty of the Adored One , hearts and souls burning with
love , might, in utmost tranquility busy themselves with these wondrous
nemelodies , that perchance, so attracte```