The Baha'i Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience

 

From: Patrick Henry <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 9:02 AM

Dear Friend,

This is an automated acknowledgement.

Your message regarding:

     Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed

has been received at the Baha'i World Centre.

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From: Patrick Henry <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 8:33 AM

Given the uhj's oppressive tactics and violation of the human rights of
Linda and John Walbridge, Stephen Scholl, other editors of the
Dialogue magazine, the Bahai Encyclopedia editors who resigned in
protest, David Langness, Juan Cole, Michael McKenny, Nima Hazini,
former Assistant to the Auxiliary Board Paul Dodenhoff who resigned,
and so on, and so on, and so on.... All the victims documented on my
website.... I hesitate to put the uhj above any reprehensible act....
Including conspiracy to murder Dr. Daniel Jordan.

I have been a member of the Bahai faith since 1976. My ID Card
may be found on my website. I have never been contacted by the uhj
or any of its underlings to the contrary.

Anything I have ever said is a matter of the sanctity of my individual
God-given conscience that both Baha'u'llah and Abdul-Baha claimed
would never be violated in their religion.

I shall "cc" this message to the uhj so that they hear from me directly
on the matter.

I would consider it an honor to be one of its official victims; indeed,
the highest spiritual achievement of my Bahai life, defending Baha'u'llah's
Teachings from the fanaticism that has overwhelmed and hamstrung his
Revelation.

--
FG.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm

David Fiorito and Jennifer Spotila <fiospots@pond.com> wrote in message
news:3W_34.1724$jC1.177695@newshog.newsread.com...
> He has his ID card on his website.  When asked he says he is a registered
> Baha'i.  So I decided to see if I could verify that he is what he claims
to
> be.
>
> It was a simple check on status to see if his claim was fact.  I don't
know
> anything other than they could not confirm his membership.  I went no
> further because I really don't want to know more than that.
>
> Peace,
>
> Dave
>
>
> Carol wrote in message <82p30q$hd7$1@nnrp1.deja.com>...
> >In article <82p06t$f0o$1@nnrp1.deja.com>,
> >  dfiorito@my-deja.com wrote:
> >> Out of curiostiy I decided to check on Fred Glaysher's status in the
> >> Baha'i Community and his membership could not be confirmed.
> >>
> >> I was under the assumption that he is a member of the US Baha'i
> >> Community.
> >>
> >> Fred?
> >>
> >> Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
> >> Before you buy.
> >>
> >
> >He's a member of an alternative Baha'i community.  One of those
> >"splinter groups".  So why are you checking up on his status?
> >
> >
> >--
> >Best regards,
> >
> >Carol Ann
> >"We have met the enemy and he is us." Pogo
> >
> >
> >Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
> >Before you buy.
>
>

From: Incoming Electronic Communication Operations <ieco@bwc.org>
Subject: Your Message Has Been Received...
Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 5:36 AM

Dear Friend,

This is an automated acknowledgement.

Your message regarding:

     Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed

has been received at the Baha'i World Centre.From: TOSBoards1@aol.com[SMTP:TOSBoards1@aol.com]
Sent: Friday, February 26, 1999 6:57 AM
To: TOSBoards2@aol.com
Subject: Fwd: False TOSs on AOL - Bahai Forum Leader Mark Foster

<<Message: False TOSs on AOL - Bahai Forum Lead...>> 
[This Message (REGULAR) Has Been Forwarded By The Mail Spinner]
From: FG@aol.com[SMTP:FG@aol.com]
Sent: Friday, February 26, 1999 7:51 AM
To: TOSGeneral@aol.com
Cc: TOSBoards1@aol.com; FG@hotmail.com
Subject: TOS - personal insult - Maneck

This person is consistently insulting me on the
Bahai Forums while the Forum Leader permits it,
though charging me with TOSs for all kinds of
innocuous statements.

FG@aol.com

Subject: Re: alt.religion.bahai & talk.religion.bahai
Date: 2/25/1999 11:22 AM Eastern Standard Time
From: <A HREF="">Smaneck</A>
Message-id: <19990225112245.13529.00000211@ng-ch1.aol.com>

Charlotte writes: 

>So.... I will ask Mark to NOT add these newsgroups if you will not agree to
>immediately remove those items placed there without permission and agree to
>stop the practice of putting them there in the future.

Dear Charlotte, 

While your annoyance to Fred doing this is well taken and he is certainly
violating standard netiquette and perhaps copyright laws in forwarding other's
posts, I don't think we can oppose the addition of newsgroups because of the
unconscionable behavior of one of its members. 

I think it is sufficient reason to refuse to add Mr. Glaysher's own website,
however since he has total control of its contents. Besides, it is not like he
doesn't "provide" us with that website address on a regular basis.

Hey Fred, do you have long pink ears? 

warmest,

Susan Maneck 








From: FG[SMTP:FG@hotmail.com]
Sent: Friday, February 26, 1999 6:58 AM
To: TOSBoards1; HANI72#aol.com; CRust60001#aol.com; AAli929596#aol.com; ccrawfeild@aol.com; Mr Mahdi; Nadle; Ruletherod; Macho786#aol.com; Member1700#aol.com; PParvin#aol.com; RayHanania@aol.com; RobertNik#aol.com; Shaksway@aol.com; Barthaman
Subject: False TOSs on AOL - Bahai Forum Leader Mark Foster

RBCF Mark wrote in message <19990225105858.11959.00000098@ng-cg1.aol.com>...
>Fred wrote:
>> Mark Foster and his cohorts
>>are exploiting the lack of
>>familiarity among most AOL
>>personnel to their advantage
>>by attempting to blackball
>>me and other AOL members
>>who refuse to accept their
>>literal interpretations of the
>>BAhai Faith.
>
>How do you know I have a literal view of the Baha'i Faith? If you read my
>postings when I was on your email list (mirroring alt.religion.bahai), you
know
>that is not the case.

False. Changing the subject as well. The issue is
your constant alleging of specious TOSs against me
and others on AOL. For anyone with any knowledge or
experience of the Bahai Faith, it's obvious that you're
supporting the Bahai fundamentalists there and attempting
to target and ultimately have AOL suspend the accounts
of anyone who doesn't share your and their views.  You
and other intolerant Bahais know you can depend on
the lack of familiarity on the part of AOL personnel with
the Bahai Faith to work to your advantage.

AOL removed Vahid once it understood what was really
taking place. I'm confident when AOL has finished it's
consideration of Foster's false TOSs allegations they
will do likewise.

FG@aol.com

FG....The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/index.htm   On talk.religion.bahai,
alt.religion.bahai, and AOL: Keyword Bahai, Message Boards




From: FG[SMTP:FG@hotmail.com]
Sent: Sunday, February 28, 1999 8:51 AM
To: TOSBoards1; HANI72#aol.com; CRust60001#aol.com; AAli929596#aol.com; ccrawfeild@aol.com; Mr Mahdi; Nadle; Ruletherod; Macho786#aol.com; Member1700#aol.com; PParvin#aol.com; RayHanania@aol.com; RobertNik#aol.com; Shaksway@aol.com; Barthaman
Subject: Re: False TOSs on AOL - Bahai Forum Leader Mark Foster

Deana Marie Holmes wrote in message <36dc6e99.64691791@enews.newsguy.com>...
>On Sat, 27 Feb 1999 20:32:47 GMT, rlittle33@my-dejanews.com wrote:

>I pointed out what people who know about AOL have known for a long
>time:  when a forum gets out of hand, it gets shut down.  This was
>noted in the NYTimes wrt the Irish fora. I also pointed out the long
>experience critics of Scientology had with the AOL system.  I opined
>that if Mr. Foster didn't watch his step, the AOL Baha'i forum could
>go the way of the AOL Scientology forum.  That is NOT defamation.

I'd be in favor of the Bahai Forums on AOL being shut down too
if AOL personnel can't make the effort to understand what's
really going on and fundamentalist Bahais can support Mark
Foster resigning and finding a fair and honest person to serve
as Forum Leader.

>
>I'd also like you to note, Mr. Little, that I am not a Baha'i, and
>that I have had quite a bit of experience being harassed by pros, both
>legally and extralegally.  If you think that just because you can
>sling the word "defamed" around that I'll go away, you've got another
>thing coming.  I would only note that Scientology thought I'd stop
>picketing their local org if they picketed my home.  They were wrong.

Mr. Little is one of the worst literal-minded Bahai fanatics
on Usenet today. He's been a constant opponent of free
speech and conscience regarding the creation of talk.religion.bahai
for the past two years.

FG....The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/index.htm   On talk.religion.bahai,
alt.religion.bahai, and AOL: Keyword Bahai, Message Boards




>
>
>Deana Marie Holmes / member of the "Gang of Three" (Rod Keller)
>The Few, The Proud, The Banned (2x + 1 ISP on Scientology ban list)
>$cientology:  Sponsor Windows84: "Where CAN'T you go today?
>mirele@xmission.com

From: Juan Cole <jricole@my-deja.com>
Subject: Baha'u'llah's Houri of Wonder
Date: Monday, June 14, 1999 11:03 AM

Below find my provisional translation of Baha'u'llah's  Hur-i `Ujab, the
Maid of Wonder or Houri of Wonder, which is from the Baghdad period.

cheers   Juan Cole

------------
Baha'u'llah
The Houri of Wonder

The beauty of holiness has risen from behind her veil—
and that is a wondrous thing;
And spirits have fainted from the fire of their attraction,
and that is a wondrous affair.
Then they awoke and soared into the pavilions of sanctity at the
                                                    throne of domes,
and that is a wondrous mystery.
Say: the houri of eternity removed the veil from her face--
exalted be the wondrous beauty of newness!
The lights of her visage shone from the earth to the clouds,
and that is a wondrous radiance.
She threw a glance like a shooting star,
and that is a wondrous glance.
By the fire of her countenance she burned up all names and designations,
and that is a wondrous deed.
She cast her gaze upon the people of earth and dust,
and that is a wondrous gaze.
Behold, the temples of existence quivered and then vanished,
and that is a wondrous death.
Then a black strand of hair appeared from her, an adornment for
                                    the soul in the gloom of hindrances,
and that is a wondrous hue.
The fragrance of scents and perfumes wafted from her,
and that is a wondrous musk.
In her right hand she holds red wine and in her left, kebab,
and that is a wondrous grace.
Her palm is dyed crimson with the blood of lovers,
and that is a wondrous thing.
She passed around the wine of life in jugs and cups,
and that is a wondrous fountain;
And sang of the beloved’s name, strumming on lute and rebec,
and that is a wondrous song.
Then hearts melted from fire and blaze,
and that is a wondrous passion.
She bestowed the nourishment of beauty without measure,
and that is a wondrous food.
The sword of allusion struck at necks,
and that is a wondrous blow.
She smiled, and the pearls of her teeth were manifest,
and that is a wondrous gleam.
Then the hearts of those who understand cried out,
and that is a wondrous self-denial.
All those filled with pride and suspicion turned away from her,
and that is nothing but a wondrous opponent.
When she heard, she returned to her palace in grief and regret,
and that is a wondrous sorrow.
She went and returned, may her to and fro be exalted,
and this is a wondrous decree;
And she uttered within her soul a cry that annihilated existence
                                       and then was made to vanish,
and that is a wondrous grief.
She opened her lips for a river of advice and reproof to flow,
and that is a wondrous spring..
She said, "Do not reject me, people of the Book."
And that is a wondrous affair.
"Are you the people of guidance and are you the friends?"
And that is a wondrous falsehood.
She said, "We shall not return to you, my companions."
And that is a wondrous return.
"We shall conceal the mysteries of God that are in his scriptures."
And this matter is from the All-Glorious, the Giving.
"You shall not find me until the promised one appears on the
                                                    Day of Return."
By my life, that is a wondrous abasement.

Source:  Baha’u’llah, Ad`iyyih-‘i Hadrat-i Mahbub (Hofheim-Langenhain:
Baha’i Publishing Trust, 1980), pp. 153-158.

--
Juan Cole, History, U of Michigan jrcole@umich.edu
https://www-personal.umich.edu/~jrcole/bahai.htm
Buy *Modernity & Millennium: Genesis of Baha'i*
https://www.kalimat.com/

Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Share what you know. Learn what you don't.From: "Michel Boucher" <alsandorz@netcom.ca>
Subject: Re: high Baha'i divorce rate
Date: Wednesday, June 28, 2000 9:19 PM

rlittle95@my-deja.com a écrit dans <8jdoel$tpk$1@nnrp1.deja.com>:

>This statement seems to hold a number of implications which run
>contrary to what Baha'u'llah Himself says about those who find and
>accept Him. 

But you're assuming that every person who is a member of the Baha'i 
administrative order (for want of a better term) "accepts" Baha'u'llah.  
After many years of being a member of said BAO, I realized that this 
was not the case.  Not that I denied his existence, but rather the 
purpose as stipulated in the writings were not understood by me in 
those terms.  I never denied the matter as set in the writings, but it never 
had any *personal* importance to me.

>Baha'u'llah states that the first duty of an individual
>is to accept the (most recent) Manifestation of God. 

There are many "first" duties.  My first and most important duty is 
to see to the welfare of my children (yours too, if you have any).  If I forgo 
that responsibility in the pursuit of some ethereal concept of deity, I'm not 
doing anyone any good.  I'm sure we can come up with some more "first" duties 
that would take precedence over a "command" from the deity.

It also raises the question: if the deity makes a particular condition 
mandatory, it is incumbent upon the deity to make it possible as well for all 
to meet this criterion.  I don't buy this "everyone must find him".  It is 
patently impossible for everyone since 1844 to have heard about the Bab and 
Baha'u'llah.  Does that mean their existence is invalidated, or that they are 
sent to a sort of limbo?  If the deity is just (which we must accept otherwise 
we might as well be Greeks), then the value of a life is in its living and in 
the pure love one receives (state of grace), from whatever source, not in a set 
of abstract beliefs that may or may not be subject to erroneous interpretation 
and overweening sentimentalism.  

>I think that to
>characterize those relatively few people who in this day have found
>and accepted Him, as being "marginal" is clearly contrary to what
>Baha'u'llah, 'Abdul-Baha' and Shoghi Effendi would say, and did say
>repeatedly about Baha'is.

Well, I have met many and would suggest that Shoghi Effendi did not meet the 
Baha'is that came in the early 70's.  I can only think that as the movement 
gains amplitude, the problem of "marginals" as members will grow, not decrease.  
Partly to blame is the willingness to accept members without appropriate 
scrutiny beforehand.  If this is to be a job in the name of the deity, one 
should be not only qualified but be deemed to be qualified.  Too often have I 
seen membership simply rubber-stamped to increase numbers, and the putative 
member dropped out of sight after one or two feasts.  If this has changed in 
the last twenty-five years, then fine...

>Does the Baha'i Faith in America suffer from an inordinately high
>divorce rate? The answer is an emphatic yes, but the underlying
>reasons are very complex, I think, and while Professor Cole has
>intelligently touched on some of them, he has a viewpoint which
>seems colored by his recent experiences. I think he most assuredly
>held different opinions at the time that study was reportedly made.

The problem is likely in American views and ideas on sentimental life. Becoming 
a Baha'i does not cleanse one of socially acquired prejudices.  I encountered 
early on Baha'is from the US who thought and acted like Baptists, others who 
were either catholic in their approach, or anti-catholic, depending on their 
upbringing.  People come with their baggage.  They don't get rid of that 
baggage, they integrate it into their way of seeing things.  Baha'is in 
Mississippi can probably agree among themselves because they share the same 
world view to begin with as people from Mississippi.  In my time, the Persian 
believers were seen as a unifying factor and relied upon to contribute heavily 
because of their long ties to the Faith and because of their direct access to 
the writings in the original texts.

I saw that at the beginning as diversity, as a possible start to blending 
different parts of human behaviour, and that was what we were told in firesides 
and in the available literature, that all the various parts would form a whole.  
But that turned out not to be true.  I was told one night by one who would know 
(and who shall remain nameless) that the melting pot, the true spirit of a 
melting pot, was not to be, according to writings that were not available in 
translation at the time.  I can't say whether it is or not because the 
reference was to the books in Arabic or Persian, but I felt that saying it 
would be if it wasn't going to be was a cheap way of suckering people in, 
playing on their willingness to create a rainbow and then letting them in on 
the secret, that the rainbow wasn't the goal, the goal was their membership.  

I began to detach myself from the Faith at that point, not because it had not 
met my criteria, but because a subterfuge had seemed necessary, one that 
*seemed* to be in tune with the needs of the time, unity in diversity, world 
peace...one that promised these things but had no plan to deliver them.  
Instead, it was to be a cultural monolith, not only one world, but one culture, 
one language, one brand of cigarettes (scratch that...).  It sounded too much 
like Western Canada :-)  Having lived in Spain under a fascist regime, I was 
sensitive to political manipulation, not to mention my anti-assimilationist 
background.  Let's just say I got a case of the heebie-jeebies.  

Had the point been put to me honestly up front, considering that I was capable 
of making the decision as an informed adult, I might not have been forced to 
withdraw my membership.  I might well not have joined, either.

>I also think that God tests our faith, and through these tests our
>weaknesses and strengths are made known to us.
>
>I pray I am not a test of faith for others.

I would hope that anyone who has a test of faith can learn something from it.  
Only in times of difficuilty can you test your mettle.  So go ahead, be a test 
of faith for others.  If they see it that way, they need the exercise :-)

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

"Eating fries with cheese makes sense, mon eustsi."

                                             Guy

To send private mail, get the zed out. 
ICQ: 69205479 (take the five out)From: Bozeman 59 <bozeman59@aol.com>
Subject: Re:Article by Vance Salisbury concerning the bahai faith
Date: Thursday, December 16, 1999 6:41 PM

<< https://www.jps.net/bo55/bbarc.html

In this article, it contains evidence of bahai editing of their books and
historical backrounds of the babi and bahai faith.  >>

I find the information at this site disturbing.
The half truths told over the decades have evolved into full out lies and
distortions.  The Baha'is should take action to come clean about the
alterations in their literature or risk looking more and more like a cult.
From: Bozeman 59 <bozeman59@aol.com>
Subject: Re:Article by Vance Salisbury concerning the bahai faith
Date: Friday, December 17, 1999 11:51 AM

<<  A Cult huhhhhhhhhh????  Wasn't Christianity considered a wayward
Judaic  cult in it's humble beginings????  It's interesting how society
first views a "New Religion".  I suggest you investigate what a cult
really is before you throw out such a term.

- Sean  >>

I don't care how old your religion is.  I don't partictularly care for
Christianity or Islam either.  But their religions are at least old enough that
their lies can be obscured and turned into myths.  The Baha'i religion is still
young enough to be found out if you lie.
The web site cited by Mahdi is filled with information that makes your religion
look like a fabricated bunch of lies.  Go look at it yourself and then explain
why your authorities have deliberately changed information to conform to the
present when the past wasn't convenient.
If the shoe fits wear it!  The Baha'i faith looks like a cult.
From: FG[SMTP:FG@hotmail.com]
Sent: Sunday, February 28, 1999 8:51 AM
To: TOSBoards1; HANI72#aol.com; CRust60001#aol.com; AAli929596#aol.com; ccrawfeild@aol.com; Mr Mahdi; Nadle; Ruletherod; Macho786#aol.com; Member1700#aol.com; PParvin#aol.com; RayHanania@aol.com; RobertNik#aol.com; Shaksway@aol.com; Barthaman
Subject: Re: False TOSs on AOL - Bahai Forum Leader Mark Foster

Deana Marie Holmes wrote in message <36dc6e99.64691791@enews.newsguy.com>...
>On Sat, 27 Feb 1999 20:32:47 GMT, rlittle33@my-dejanews.com wrote:

>I pointed out what people who know about AOL have known for a long
>time:  when a forum gets out of hand, it gets shut down.  This was
>noted in the NYTimes wrt the Irish fora. I also pointed out the long
>experience critics of Scientology had with the AOL system.  I opined
>that if Mr. Foster didn't watch his step, the AOL Baha'i forum could
>go the way of the AOL Scientology forum.  That is NOT defamation.

I'd be in favor of the Bahai Forums on AOL being shut down too
if AOL personnel can't make the effort to understand what's
really going on and fundamentalist Bahais can support Mark
Foster resigning and finding a fair and honest person to serve
as Forum Leader.

>
>I'd also like you to note, Mr. Little, that I am not a Baha'i, and
>that I have had quite a bit of experience being harassed by pros, both
>legally and extralegally.  If you think that just because you can
>sling the word "defamed" around that I'll go away, you've got another
>thing coming.  I would only note that Scientology thought I'd stop
>picketing their local org if they picketed my home.  They were wrong.

Mr. Little is one of the worst literal-minded Bahai fanatics
on Usenet today. He's been a constant opponent of free
speech and conscience regarding the creation of talk.religion.bahai
for the past two years.

FG....The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/index.htm   On talk.religion.bahai,
alt.religion.bahai, and AOL: Keyword Bahai, Message Boards




>
>
>Deana Marie Holmes / member of the "Gang of Three" (Rod Keller)
>The Few, The Proud, The Banned (2x + 1 ISP on Scientology ban list)
>$cientology:  Sponsor Windows84: "Where CAN'T you go today?
>mirele@xmission.com

From: FG@aol.com[SMTP:FG@aol.com]
Sent: Friday, February 26, 1999 7:51 AM
To: TOSGeneral@aol.com
Cc: TOSBoards1@aol.com; FG@hotmail.com
Subject: TOS - personal insult - Maneck

This person is consistently insulting me on the
Bahai Forums while the Forum Leader permits it,
though charging me with TOSs for all kinds of
innocuous statements.

FG@aol.com

Subject: Re: alt.religion.bahai & talk.religion.bahai
Date: 2/25/1999 11:22 AM Eastern Standard Time
From: <A HREF="">Smaneck</A>
Message-id: <19990225112245.13529.00000211@ng-ch1.aol.com>

Charlotte writes: 

>So.... I will ask Mark to NOT add these newsgroups if you will not agree to
>immediately remove those items placed there without permission and agree to
>stop the practice of putting them there in the future.

Dear Charlotte, 

While your annoyance to Fred doing this is well taken and he is certainly
violating standard netiquette and perhaps copyright laws in forwarding other's
posts, I don't think we can oppose the addition of newsgroups because of the
unconscionable behavior of one of its members. 

I think it is sufficient reason to refuse to add Mr. Glaysher's own website,
however since he has total control of its contents. Besides, it is not like he
doesn't "provide" us with that website address on a regular basis.

Hey Fred, do you have long pink ears? 

warmest,

Susan Maneck 








From: FG@aol.com[SMTP:FG@aol.com]
Sent: Thursday, February 18, 1999 9:59 AM
To: HostMgr@aol.com
Cc: FG@hotmail.com; TOSBoards1@aol.com
Subject: Re: Who is Mark Foster?

He's been doing the same thing to me and several
other people who don't share the fundamentalist
mindset. I've spoken with an AOL person regarding the
whole situation. We can appeal the false TOSs by
writing the TOSBoard1@aol.com and hostmgr@aol.com.

I've just forwarded a dozen or more messages from various
people complaining now in For Non-Bahais to the above
addresses and suggest you write them as soon as you can
so that they hear from someone else. You know the literalists
have and will make me out to be a lone kook otherwise. I

Encourage others to do the same. AOL woke up in the past
and got ride of Vahid and Edmund, former "Forum Leaders."

We can depend on them to do the right thing with Mark Foster
too but have to be patient and make the extra effort to inform
them what he's really doing now on AOL.

FG....The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/index.htm On talk.religion.bahai,
alt.religion.bahai, and AOL: Keyword Bahai, Message Boards

 

Subj: Re: Who is Mark Foster?
Date: 2/18/1999 9:26:24 AM Eastern Standard Time
From: nadle@aol.com (Nadle)
To: FG@aol.com

Fred,

I'm getting really ticked off with Mark's censorship.

I was wrong and you, it turns out, have been right.

I wasnt to send a complaint to AOL about Mark.  He's  pulled several of my
posts and forwarded them to TOS.  TOS, however, have blown him off.

When I repost those deleted posts, he yanks them  again, and forwards them -
yet again - to TOS.  

What do I do?

Thank you for the information.

Sincerely,
Larry Rhodes

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Date: 18 Feb 1999 09:26:22 EST
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level.associations-specia.bahai.for-non-bahais1f6ff4
To: FG@aol.com
Organization: AOL https://www.aol.com
References: <19990218080242.27436.00000677@ng90.aol.com>
From: nadle@aol.com (Nadle)
Subject: Re: Who is Mark Foster?
Message-ID: <19990218092622.27682.00003216@ng97.aol.com>

From: FG <FG@hotmail.com>
  Subject: Response to a Fanatic
  Newsgroups: news.groups
  Message-Id: <857214887.14063@dejanews.com>
  Reply-To: FG <FG@hotmail.com>
  Organization: Deja News Usenet Posting Service
  X-Article-Creation-Date: Sat Mar 01 11:14:52 1997 GMT
  X-Originating-IP-Addr: 199.179.42.119 ()
  X-Http-User-Agent: Mozilla/3.0Gold (Win95; U)
  

  (FORGIVE THE CAPS, BUT I DON'T KNOW HOW ELSE TO DISTINGUISH
  MY REMARK FROM OTHERS)
  

  I'VE DECIDED TO POST A REPLY TO THIS MESSAGE BECAUSE IT SEEMS
  TO ME TO TYPIFY THE GROSS FANATICISM AND SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS OF
  SO MANY BAHAIS....  THIS MENTALITY, I BELIEVE, UNDERLIES MUCH
  OF THE OPPOSITION TO TALK.RELIGION.BAHAI OVER THE LAST WEEKS.
  NO HONEST MEMBER OF THE BAHAI FAITH CAN FAIL TO UNDERSTAND THE
  TACTIC OF INTIMIDATION USED BY SOME FANATICS TO SILENCE ANYONE
  WHO MIGHT DARE TO EXPRESS AN OPINION OTHER THAN THE
  CONVENTIONALLY ACCEPTED ONE.  AS A BAHAI, FOR MORE THAN 20
  YEARS, THIS TENDENCY CONCERNS ME DEEPLY.  IT IS DIFFICULT FOR
  ME NOT TO SEE IT AS THE SAME LYING, DISTORTING, AND COERCIVE
  METHODS USED BY EXTREMISTS IN ALL CULTS AND PSEUDO-RELIGIONS.
  I BELIEVE THE MODERATORS OF SOC.RELIGION.BAHAI HAVE USED
  THESE SAME METHODS IN MANIPULATING, THROUGH OTHERS, THE
  DISCUSSION ABOUT TALK.RELIGION.BAHAI....
  

  I DON'T BELIEVE IT'S JUSTIFIABLE ON THE BASIS OF THE BAHAI
  WRITINGS....
  

  
  Date: Wed, 26 Feb 1997 15:55:19 -0500
  From: Roger Reini <rreini@wwnet.com>
  To: FG <FG@hotmail.com>
  Subject: Re: Response to a Jesuit
  

  I am replying privately because I feel it's most appropriate.  You do
  NOT have my permission to post this to Usenet or any other forum.
  

  THE REASON I HAVE IS GIVEN ABOVE.
  

  In my opinion, this note of yours contained some implied criticism of
  the Institutions and could be construed as undermining their authority.
  Specifically, this quote:
  

  >This ignores the fact that many Bahais don't accept review and believe
  >it's censorship....
  

  WHAT RREINI IS INTIMATING HERE, FOR THOSE WHO DON'T PERCEIVE IT, IS
  THAT I'M A MISCREANT, INFIDEL, ETC....
  

  If this was not your intent, then you might want to rephrase the concept
  you're trying to get across so that it's clear you're not trying to
  undermine the Institutions.  On the other hand, if that was your intent,
  then that's something I prefer not to think about.
  

  HERE IT IS AGAIN....  THE RED FLAG OF ACCUSATION, OF THE SELF-RIGHTEOUS,
  USED TO SILENCE AND TERRORIZE OTHERS, TO MANIPULATE AND CONTROL....
  ENDING WITH HIS WRAPPING HIMSELF IN THE MANTLE OF PIETY AND PURITY
  OF MOTIVE....
  

  Roger (rreini@wwnet.com)
  

  THIS HAS BEEN THE APPROACH OF OTHERS DURING THIS DISCUSSION PERIOD.
  IS THIS THE KIND OF KINGDOM OF GOD WE'RE TRYING TO CREATE ON EARTH?
  THE IRANIAN REVOLUTION WORLDWIDE?  IT SEEMS LIKE IT AT TIMES....
  

  FOR OTHER EXAMPLES OF IT, ONE MIGHT LOOK BACK AT THE POSTING BY
  DR. STEVE BURGESS WHO AFTER MAKING HIS SHAMELESS INTIMATIONS
FAILED
  TO HAVE THE COURAGE TO REPLY TO ME, WHEN I CONFRONTED HIM, IN
PUBLIC,
  WITH HIS CONTEMPTIBLE INSINUATION....
  

  I PRESENT ALL THIS AS EVIDENCE, TO FAIR-MINDED PEOPLE, THAT
  AN UNCONTROLLED, UNMANIPULATED, UNCENSORED TALK.RELIGION.BAHAI
IS
  WOEFULLY NEEDED TO ENSURE THE FREEDOM OF RELIGIOUS CONSCIENCE
  GOD HIMSELF HAS BLESSED HUMANKIND WITH....  THERE ARE TOO MANY
  SELF-RIGHTEOUS FANATICS IN THE BAHAI FAITH FOR IT NOT TO EXIST....
  

  FG
  ROCHESTER HILLS, MICHIGAN USA
  Critics chafe at Baha'i conservatismNot spell-checked
  [Note: A sidebar introduction, plus corrections to the article submitted by 
  two Baha'is, and finally a Baha'i report on the article, including a list of 
  the newspapers which ran it, all follow. Some Baha'is interpreted these 
  articles as excessively critical; see for example the NSA response at "Attacks 
  on the Faith". -J.W.] 

Eds: RNS Online, https://www.nj.com/RNS/, printed this with color photos of Cole, 
Henderson and the Baha'i Worship Center in Wilmette, Ill, accompanying this 
story.
NEWS FEATURE: "Critics chafe at Baha'i conservatism"
By IRA RIFKIN
c.1997 Religion News Service
UNDATED - The first 19 days of March are a special time for Baha'is, members of 
a worldwide religion with a liberal reputation based on its vision of the 
underlying unity of all faiths, the oneness of humanity and the harmony of 
science and religion.
The Baha'i faith grew out of Islam, and like the Muslim month of Ramadan, Baha 
is set aside 19 days - the month of Ala according to the Baha'i calendar - as a 
period of dawn-to-sunset fasting and spiritual reflection. The month ends with 
the Feast of Nawruz, the Baha'i new year. It's a festive time of community 
gatherings featuring prayers, spiritual readings, socializing and lots of food.
For ex-Baha'i Juan Cole, though, this year's feast will be anything but festive.
Cole, a professor of Middle East history at the University of Michigan, is among 
the nation's leading experts on the faith. Until last May, when he formally 
resigned from the movement, he had been a Baha'i for 25 years. Now, however, he 
counts himself among a small but influential group of past and present liberal 
Baha'is angry over what they say is the hijacking of the faith by a cadre of 
conservative leaders more interested in preserving their authority than the 
Baha'i principle of "independent investigation of reality. "
That principle is among the core tenets of the Baha'i faith first articulated by 
its founder, the l9th-century Persian prophet known as Baha'u'llah (the Glory of 
God) and who is revered by the faithful as an incarnation of God akin to Jesus.
According to the critics, the National Spiritual Assembly (NSA), which oversees 
the American Baha'i movement, is dominated by a tight-knit group of 
authoritarian officials who keep the lid on free expression by threatening 
dissidents with excommunication and by manipulating the process by which. NSA 
members are elected.
In the Baha' i faith, excommunication call include total shunning by family 
members and friends.
Spreading their message via the Internet, the dissidents - many of whom, like 
Cole, once were members of the faith's intellectual elite - say the nine-member 
NSA also hides the truth about the faith's shrinking American following.
"Baha'is are not open - repeat, not open - about how controlling this 
organization is, " said Cole. ``Virtually no one who comes into this faith 
realizes that by becoming a Baha'i you are making your individual conscience 
hostage to the dictates of the leadership.
"The Baha' is started out Unitarian and ended up Calvinist. "
For their part, American Baha'i leaders, headquartered in the Chicago suburb of 
Wilmette, I11., dismiss the critics as an inconsequential group of disgruntled 
elitists who - blinded by their attraction to the faith's more liberal aspects - 
overlooked its deeply conservative side.
This includes an emphasis on " administrative order" as a prime religious goal. 
Baha'u'llah taught that religions fail in large part because, of the disunity 
that tears them apart following their initial burst of spiritual energy.
As a result, tight controls are placed on all public statements made by Baha'is 
-- including the works of scholars, who are required to submit their writings 
for pre-publication review.
"The Baha'i community as a whole does not encourage antagonistic confrontation, 
" said Firuz Kazemzadeh, an NSA-member and its secretary for external affairs. 
"We always seek consensus. But if there is no unanimity then the majority must 
prevail.
Not all Baha'i scholars find fault with this.
"I personally don't buy 'the totalitarian argument, " said Canadian Baha'i B. 
Todd Lawson, an assistant professor of Islamic studies at Montreal's McGill 
University.
"The Baha'i faith posits a non-confrontation version of problem solving. My view 
is if you opt out of that mode, that's your prerogative. But there are others 
who take a longer view of things. ... Baha'i ideals are extremely demanding. "
Michael McMullen, an assistant professor of Sociology at the University of 
Houston at Clear Lake, said prior review "makes sense" because much of the 
writings of Baha'u'llah and his successors remain untranslated from their 
original Persian and Arabic, and are therefore inaccessible to the majority of 
American Baha'is.
"My experience has been that what is corrected are factual errors not 
interpretation, " said McMullen, who is also a local Baha'i leader in League 
City, Texas.
The dissidents also claim the Baha'i prohibition against public campaigning or 
nominating candidates for spots on the nine-member NSA serves to keep it a 
closed body controlled by the American Baha'i establishment.
Baha'i leaders say they are only following an orthodoxy established by 
Baha'u'llah and his successors - his son Abdul-Baha and his great-grandson, 
Shoghi Effendi, who died in 1957.
"It is extremely deprecated if anyone even talks about how the voted " said 
Kazemzadeh. "Voting is supposed to be a very spiritual act."
Assembly members are elected annually by a fixed number of 171 delegates who 
represent local Baha'i assemblies across the continental United States.
Robert C. Henderson, a former Atlanta businessman who is the NSA's 
secretary-general, making him the highest ranking American Baha'i (the faith has 
no ordained clergy), said there have been 12 changes in the NSA' s membership 
over the past 15 years.
"That's not indicative of a closed group ," he said.
However, Cole said each change resulted from retirement, death or a member 
moving out of the country. No incumbent who has sought re-election has been 
defeated since 1961, he said.
Cole also noted that family and other close associations are common among 
American Baha'i leaders. Six of the nine current NSA members have family or 
professional connections.
For example, Henderson's mother, Wilma Ellis, is married to Kazemzadeh. Ellis 
herself is a former NSA member who has held d a variety of prominent Baha'i' i 
positions. Currently she is a member of the Continental Board of Counselors of 
the Americas, which provides advice and other services to elected Baha'i bodies 
throughout the hemisphere.
Two other current NSA members are husband and wife James arid Dorothy Nelson. He 
is a former presiding judge of the Los Angeles Municipal Court. She is a judge 
of California's Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. '
Two other members are Juana Conrad, a retired administrator for the Los Angeles 
Municipal Courts, and William Davis, former administrative executive of the 
Ninth Circuit Court.
Yet another current assembly member is South Dakotan Patricia Locke, the first 
American-Indian woman to serve on the NSA. She replaced her son Kevin: Locke.
McMullen, the University of Houston sociologist, acknowledged that the 
prohibition against nominations and campaigning has made it hard for those 
outside the Baha'i establishment to win election to the NSA.
But on the local level, he added, there is a much higher leadership turnover. 
Moreover, on this level of authority, he said, issues, even controversial ones, 
are freely debated without fear of official disapproval.
Henderson also said that "Baha'is are specifically asked to air their 
grievances" at local and national conventions. "There are specific channels for 
such expression, but it must remain within these established channels."
"The Baha'i faith is outwardly liberal but inwardly conservative, " he 
continued. " It's a matter of scripture."
Baha'is claim a worldwide membership of more than 5 million people living in 
more than 200 nations and territories. About 2.5 million Baha'is live in India.
In Iran - where the faith first emerged in the 1840s when Baha'u'llah proclaimed 
himself to be the divine manifestation for the modern era there are about 
300,000 Baha'is. Considered heretics by the Muslim authorities, the live as a 
persecuted minority.
The heresy charge stems from Baha'u'llah's claim to prophet status some l,200 
years after Muhammad, the founder of Islam, proclaimed himself God's final 
prophet.
In the United States, Baha'is claim some l30,000 members - a third of whom are 
African-Americans. About 2l,000 live in California, with the largest 
concentration - more than 6,000 - in greater Los Angeles.
Baha'is are also relatively strong in South Carolina, Texas, Florida, Georgia, 
North Carolina, Illinois, Arizona and Washington state.
However, Baha'i critics say the religion's membership numbers are wildly 
inflated. Citing friendly but unnamed sources at Baha'i headquarters 1n 
Wilmette, the dissidents say no more than 30,000 names represent active Baha'is 
with verifiable addresses.
"Wilmette has no idea who most of these so-called 130,000 Baha'is are,"said 
Steven Scholl, a Baha'i for 27 years until he withdrew his membership last 
October.
"The large number of inactive members on the roles speaks to the number of 
people who have simply walked away from the faith out of their upset with the 
leadership, " said Scholl, a publisher of spiritual books based in Ashland Ore. 
'
A 1993 book on Americans' religious affiliations, " One Nation Under God" by 
demographers Barry Kosmin and Seymour Lachman, estimated the number of adult 
Baha'is in the United States at about 28,000.
"Every new religious movement that is in a missionary phase tends to 
overestimate its members," Kosmin, currently at the Institute for Jewish Policy 
Research in London, said in an interview. "They count people coming in, but 
never count those who leave."
Kazemzadeh, the Baha'i official, insisted that the 130,000 figure is 
"essentially accurate." But he also said that "if active means contributing 
funds and serving locally, it's probably about half the names on the list."
Sizable Baha'i communities in the South are traceable to the influx of mostly 
rural African-Americans who joined the faith in the 1960s and `70s, drawn by its 
strong rejection of racial prejudice. Jazz musician Dizzy Gillespie is probably 
the best-known African-American Baha'i.
During those same years, relatively large numbers of white liberals, attracted 
by the faith's emphasis on a society free of social injustice, also joined. It 
is mostly members of this group - many of them scholars of Baha'i texts, the 
Middle East and its languages - that today lead the dissident movement.
Linda Walbridge, an anthropologist at the University of Indiana specializing in 
the growth of Islam in America, became a Baha'i in l966 when she was a 
19-year-old VISTA volunteer on the Navajo Reservation. Despite her anger at the 
hierarchy, she remains a Baha'i.
Raised Roman Catholic, Walbridge said she was attracted to the Baha'i faith by 
its promise of a universalist vision. "It was far more open than anything I had 
experienced. "
Walbridge's public dissent has prompted Baha'i officials to threaten to label 
her a "covenant breaker" - a form of excommunication that would require her 
Baha'i husband to divorce her or risk his own excommunication.
"It was supposed to be the most liberal, broad-based religion on the face of the 
earth, " said Walbridge. " Instead, it turned out to be a straight jacket."
For liberal academics like Walbridge, the lack of free expression is a prime 
bone of contention. However, they also take issue with the Baha'i claim of 
inclusiveness when only men can serve on the Universal House of Justice the 
faith's international authority based in Haifa, Israel, near Baha'u'llah's, 
burial place. Established in l963 in accordance with Baha'u'llah's dictates, the 
Universal House of Justice is considered an infallible body by Baha'is.
The critics also take issue with the harsh attitude taken by Baha'i leadership 
toward sexually active gay and lesbian members, who are subject to official 
sanction under the faith's general prohibition against all forms of 
extra-marital sex.
"I understand that this conforms to understanding of Baha'i orthodoxy that the 
leadership shares, but how is this inclusive? " said Walbridge. " For heaven's 
sake, let's at least discuss it. Things have changed since the l9th century."
To members of the Baha'i establishment, Walbridge's challenge to some of the 
faith's basic tenets are indicative of the critics' misreading of the movement's 
conservative side.
"These so-called dissident Baha'is like to be among Baha'is because they were 
liberal and we appear liberal,'' said Kazemzadeh. "But they did not y believe in 
God as Baha'is define it. That raises the question of hypocrisy.
"This is a religious community united by a set of beliefs," he said. " So if a 
person says he does not believe in these beliefs, why is he a member of the 
community?"
Sidebar: Thumbnail guide to the beliefs of the Baha'is 
by Ira Rifkin
c. 1997 Religion News Service
UNDATED -- A cornerstone of Baha'i beliefs is the principle of progressive 
relvelation, which holds that God repeatedly sends divine messengers to Earth 
and that the latest in a line running from Abraham to Jesus and Muhammad was the 
19th-century Persian prophet known as Baha'u'llah. Missionary-minded and 
pacifist-oriented, the Baha'i faith teaches the unity of mankind and the 
commonality of all religions. It also emphasizes the harmony of science and 
religion, rejection of all prejudice, independent investigation of truth, 
equality of the sexes and compulsory education. "The Baha'i Faith's progressive 
approach to human society originates with Baha'u'llah's emphasis on unity," said 
a 1992 official profile of the movement. "Indeed, if one were to characterize 
His teachings in a single word, that word would be unity."
Baha'is have no ordained clergy and little ritual, and are led by elected 
officials. Despite the declaration of sexual equality, the faith's international 
authority, the Universal House of Justice based in Haifa, Israel, is doctrinally 
an all-male body. Baha'is consider the House of Justice to be infallible.
National Spiritual Assemblies direct Baha'i affairs in individual countries. 
U.S. Baha'i headquarters are in the Chicago suburb of Wilmette, Ill., site of 
one of seven Baha'i Houses of Worship scattered around the globe.
Baha'is believe the world is destined to have one government, which will be led 
by Baha'is and will be based on the faith's administrative framework. The Baha'i 
faith grew out of Shiite Islam, and like Muslims, Baha'is are not supposed to 
consume alcohol and are to adhere to a strict moral code. They also believe in 
the sharing of wealth and the adoption of a universal language.
Considered heretics by Muslims, Baha'is have long been persecuted by Islamic 
leaders, particularly in Iran. Baha'u'llah spent much of his life in prison or 
under house arrest. He died while under house arrest near Acre, just north of 
Haifa, which was then part of the Ottoman Empire. Since 1980, more than 200 
Iranian Baha'is have been executed and thousands have been imprisoned, according 
to reports, leading to frequent condemnations of Teheran by the U.S. State 
Department. Because of this persecution, the recently organized, 20-member 
Secretary of State's Advisory Committee on Religious Freedom Abroad has a Baha'i 
member.
-END RIFKIN AP - NY-02-26-97 1528 EST
Note: Here follow two corrections sent to a Baha'i academics listserv in March, 
1997:
On Thursday, March 6, a Baha'i wrote:
"Mr. Henderson was misquoted. Actually, he said, "The Baha'i Faith is SOCIALLY 
liberal and MORALLY conservative." Another factual error is that Linda Walbridge 
remains a part of the American Baha'i community; as many of us may remember with 
sadness, she withdrew from the Baha'i Faith almost a year ago."
Later, she added:
"I happened to be at the National Center last Friday, and Bob Henderson pointed 
out to some Baha'is that he was misquoted. Actually, it is something that 
happens all the time in journalism (in the rush of scribbling down notes and 
all). My guess is that Linda Walbridge was also misunderstood, as she would have 
no reason to believe that the institutions consider her to be a part of the 
American Baha'i community."
The US Baha'i Office of Public Information recently mailed their PI NEWS, April 
1997, a bi-monthly publication distributed to Baha'i Public Information Reps. 
Here is the lead article regarding the RNS article: "News on Opposition National 
News Wire Article Criticizes the NSA"
"On February 27, 1997, the Religion News Service carried a news article by Ira 
Rifkin under the title "Critics Chafe at Baha'i Conservatism." The article 
presented the views of a small group of of disaffected former Baha'is who left 
the Faith because they rejected certain fundamental Baha'i teachings. The 
individuals attacked Baha'i institutions and their members attributing to them 
dictatorial attitudes, accusing them of controlling elections and claiming that 
Baha'i institutions were dominated by a tight-knit group of authoritarian 
officials. The article was published in the following US papers: 
1) Muscatine, Iowa Journal 
2) Akron, Ohio Beacon Journal 
3) Kansas City, Missouri Star 
4) North Carolina Times News 
5) Charlotte, North Carolina Observer 
6) Springfield, Massachusetts Republican 
7) Mobile, Alabama Register
"Local communities responded to the article's publication in a variety if ways. 
For example, the Baha'is of Springfield, MA, formed a delegation which visited 
the executive editor of the Springfield, Massachusetts paper. The delegation 
explained to the editor the Baha'is eighty-year history in the area and noted 
its community service. During the hour long meeting, the executive editor's tone 
was apologetic, He stated that he had not read the article before it was placed. 
Additionally, he promised to feature a positive article on the Faith in the near 
future. Although published in only seven newspapers, the article is an excellent 
opportunity to identify issues and teachings to which American media might give 
a negative interpretation: free speech, the Baha'i electoral process and 
Covenant breaking to name a few. The Office of Public Information, in 
consultation with the Research Office of the Baha'i National Center, is 
developing educational materials for PI Reps which will address these issues. 
        Back to Newspaper and magazine articles 

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        Primary sources ][ Secondary sources ][ Resources and etc. 
        Bulletin board ][ Links ][ Personal pages ][ Other sites hosted by the 
        Library 

From: "K. Paul Johnson" <pauljo@cstone.net>
Subject: Re: >>bahai - Harassment Continues
Date: Monday, March 20, 2000 11:26 AM

Mark Elderkin wrote:

>> Pat and all others concerned,
>>     I probably misstepped the guidelines by posting Freddys Facts
........

More to the point, what ethical principles were violated?

>> but I think it will give Fred a chance to realize that he is not-so
>> anonomous anymore and might wish to quit cross-posting.

So you did this to terrorize him into silence, right?

 I understand that
>> there are a lot of crazys out there that might not like the things he
>> regularly posts and now he can't hide behind his mothers dress.

So you actually envision that he might end up attacked, even murdered,
possibly by a fanatical Baha'i, as a result of your heroic action?

 I have
>> posted my own phone number before and will always make myself available
>for
>> anyones input.

That's *your* choice.  Don't make someone else's choice for him.


>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>

From: Mark Elderkin <elderkin@nor.com.au>
Subject: Re: Inter-Parliamentary Union - Universal Declaration on Democracy
Date: Monday, January 31, 2000 4:52 PM

> "The state of democracy presupposes freedom of opinion and
> expression; this right implies freedom to hold opinions without
> interference and to seek, receive and impart information and
> ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers."

Hold your opinion without interference. Why do you interfere, here, with
your spam-like postings? It is totally unacceptable by this mediums
predefinitions. When I wrote to you, I was totally within my rights to do
just that. Certainly it could not have been too offensive or you would not
have posted it here for all to read. Like all things in this natural world,
there will always be a reaction to your action.

From: <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
Subject: Re: Inter-Parliamentary Union - Universal Declaration on Democracy
Date: Wednesday, February 02, 2000 7:03 AM

A Bahai continues to harass me despite my polite
requests that he cease emailing me his insults and
threats. I hold the uhj directly responsible for the actions
of this and other Bahai fanatics. The uhj routinely inspires
this type of fundamentalism in my fellow Bahais and then
uses them to suppress and control others.

I shall be sending a copy of this message to the uhj along
with the individual's name and email address.

As a member of the Bahai faith since 1976, I have every
right to express my conscience and beliefs as both Baha'u'llah
and Abdul-Baha guaranteed their followers....

--
Patrick Henry.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm

----- Original Message -----
From: Bahá'í World Centre <secretariat@bwc.org>
To: <EarthrisePress@hotmail.com>
Sent: Sunday, January 30, 2000 11:09 AM
Subject: RE: Bahai>>> Continuing Harassment

Dear Friend,

This is an automated acknowledgement.

Your message has been received at the Bahá'í World Centre.

Electronic Communications Operation,
Bahá'í World Centre
-----

When I asked him to desist, he spammed my account with
a dozen copies of this message:
>I will post you and I will stand behind everything I wrote.............

One of his earlier messages was:
>    You have truly mastered the high-tech form of rhetorical masturbation.
>You continue to post the things which seem to excite you the most to people
>who don't really care what you are posting. It is a shame that you feel
that
>this has become such a deep seated motivation for so much of your time. I
>have heard all the drivel you are posting, before, and it has always come
>from individuals who have had their hand slapped for one reason or another.
>Get over it. The Baha'i Faith is divine and nothing you can say(mostly
>imagination) can ever effect it in the least. You will never have the
>opportunity to understand the significance of the UHJ or its members in
your
>lifetime. Jealousy takes all forms. Why not stick to an area of your
>expertise and get out of this one? No one here cares anymore about you or
>your fantasies.

Quotation from the Inter-Parliamentary Union - Universal Declaration
on Democracy:

Mark Elderkin <elderkin@nor.com.au> wrote in message
news:eunl4.36$si5.3374@nsw.nnrp.telstra.net...
>
>
> > "The state of democracy presupposes freedom of opinion and
> > expression; this right implies freedom to hold opinions without
> > interference and to seek, receive and impart information and
> > ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers."
>
> Hold your opinion without interference. Why do you interfere, here, with
> your spam-like postings? It is totally unacceptable by this mediums
> predefinitions. When I wrote to you, I was totally within my rights to do
> just that. Certainly it could not have been too offensive or you would not
> have posted it here for all to read. Like all things in this natural
world,
> there will always be a reaction to your action.
>
>

From: <dfiorito@my-deja.com>
Subject: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Thursday, December 09, 1999 2:33 PM

Out of curiostiy I decided to check on Fred Glaysher's status in the
Baha'i Community and his membership could not be confirmed.

I was under the assumption that he is a member of the US Baha'i
Community.

Fred?

Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.From: <dfiorito@my-deja.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 3:15 PM

In article <s5203qj0536@corp.supernews.com>,
  "Patrick Henry" <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com> wrote:
> Given the uhj's oppressive tactics and violation of the human rights
of
> Linda and John Walbridge, Stephen Scholl, other editors of the
> Dialogue magazine, the Bahai Encyclopedia editors who resigned in
> protest, David Langness, Juan Cole, Michael McKenny, Nima Hazini,
> former Assistant to the Auxiliary Board Paul Dodenhoff who resigned,
> and so on, and so on, and so on.... All the victims documented on my
> website.... I hesitate to put the uhj above any reprehensible act....
> Including conspiracy to murder Dr. Daniel Jordan.

<SNIP>

It is not a human right to belong to a private organization.  It is a
human right to choose your personal faith and express it as you would
like to.  But when you are a voluntary member of a religious body and
you break the laws of that body you have no right to remain a member,
and that religious group has every right to remove your membership.

There is no human right to demand change within a private organization
and have that change happen.  There are means and procedures to bring
about change in those areas that change is possible.  In the Baha'i
Faith unity of the community is paramount but subservient to obeying
all of the laws of God and the provisions of the Covenant and the chain
of authority that has been generated by it.  If you choose not to
follow those laws and provisions and that authority you may leave - no
one is making you stay.  And if you stay and do not use proper channels
and methods for creating change you have no right to immunity from
administative sanction.

I have no right as a human being to choose to join the Jesuit Order and
preach that Baha'u'llah is the return of Christ and still remain a
member.  I have no right to be a Muslim and claim that Baha'u'llah is a
Messenger of God and still remain a member.  I have no right to join an
Ultra Orthodox Jewish community and expect to break the Sabbath.  All
of those organizations have the absolute right to remove me from their
group.

If any Baha'i want to create change in a private organization you may
do so through the proper cahannels.  But don't expect it to happen if
the administration of that organization does not accept it and they can
point to the place in their charter that contradicts your view.

For Baha'is (by that I mean those registered Baha'is who value unity
and obedience to the Will of God over their personal desires) there are
methods in place to propose change in our community.  We have every
right to petition the administration at all levels.  We have the right
to voice our opinion freely.  If the administration decision goes
against our wishes then we are left with the Divine call to obey them.
If we persist and go outside the boundaries of propriety and disturb
the unity of the Faith we must expect to suffer the consequences of
those actions.

Change in a large organization is slow.  Patience is the key.  But we
have no human right to remain a member when we end up breaking the laws
of the Faith.  And if someone leaves voluntarily how is it even
possible that their rights have been violated?

Peace,

Dave

Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.From: <dfiorito@my-deja.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 12:33 PM

(sorry if this is a repeat post MyDeja is acting funny)

I never assume that anyone is a Covenant Breaker, and I do not look up
the membership of everyone on the list.

Fred made a claim that he is a registered member of the Baha'i
community.  To lend this claim creedence he scanned his membership card
and posted it on his website.

He is a controversial figure and makes many claims.  I sought to verify
the truth of his claim to membership in the US Baha'i Community.  That
membership could not be confirmed.

This is not a value judgement - just a fact.  My opinion of Fred will
remain private.  I make no accusations or threats.  I merely researched
one of his claims and it turns out to be false.

Peace,

Dave

Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.From: David Fiorito and Jennifer Spotila <fiospots@pond.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Tuesday, December 14, 1999 8:21 PM

Sorry it took so long to reply.  All one needs is the persons name and
Baha'i id# which Fred has made a part of the public record.  Contact
Membership services at National and they reply.  If you are a Baha'i that
is.

Peace,

Dave Fiorito

starjo8853@my-deja.com wrote in message <83081o$blc$1@nnrp1.deja.com>...
>David - Would you please explain how a person verifies, or as you put
>it "confirms" that another person is a US Baha'i?  Should the National
>really be giving out that information since it could cost some people
>their lives........Are you in a special position that this information
>would be given to you such as Board Member?   Star*
>
>
>In article <82rdgo$735$1@nnrp1.deja.com>,
>  dfiorito@my-deja.com wrote:
>> (sorry if this is a repeat post MyDeja is acting funny)
>>
>> I never assume that anyone is a Covenant Breaker, and I do not look up
>> the membership of everyone on the list.
>>
>> Fred made a claim that he is a registered member of the Baha'i
>> community.  To lend this claim creedence he scanned his membership
>card
>> and posted it on his website.
>>
>> He is a controversial figure and makes many claims.  I sought to
>verify
>> the truth of his claim to membership in the US Baha'i Community.  That
>> membership could not be confirmed.
>>
>> This is not a value judgement - just a fact.  My opinion of Fred will
>> remain private.  I make no accusations or threats.  I merely
>researched
>> one of his claims and it turns out to be false.
>>
>> Peace,
>>
>> Dave
>>
>> Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
>> Before you buy.
>>
>
>--
>"Look within and you will find Me standing there Mighty, Powerful, and
>Selfsubsisting".......Baha'u'llah, Arabic HW #13
>
>
>Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
>Before you buy.

From: David Fiorito and Jennifer Spotila <fiospots@pond.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Saturday, December 11, 1999 2:01 PM

The only information you can get from National about an individual is - 1)
Are they a member of the Faith in good standing.  2) Does national have a
good mailing address for them (in other words have they had any returned
mail recently).  The will not give details of membership or any personal
data.  The will not give out addresses or phone numbers.  When I inquired
they said they could not confirm that Fred was a member of the Baha'i
Community.  That is all.

The reason you can get these two pieces of data is so when someone comes to
town and says "I am a Baha'i" you can verify that fact with national before
that person can join Feast, vote, or serve on an LSA.

Peace,

Dave

From: David Fiorito and Jennifer Spotila <fiospots@pond.com>
Subject: Re: "removed from the membership rolls"   (Re: REVISED: --bahai-- Messages to uhj regarding their Technique)
Date: Sunday, December 19, 1999 7:37 PM

Fred,

I am not questioning your conscience.  You claim to be a member of the US
Baha'i Community.  You posted your membership card on your site as proof.

I decided to verify your claim.  That claim is false.  It is deceitful to
claim to be a member of the Baha'i Community knowing full well that you are
not.  I am not questioning your beliefs by doing this.  I am only showing
all of those in the many irrelevant news groups that you bother that your
are not what you say you are.

No one has control over your thoughts.  God gave us all free will.  But the
lie you have told is now uncovered.  Its time to face the fact.  The people
you say are your fellow Baha'is are not.  You have been removed from the
community.  You are on the outside looking in.

You can say whatever you want when it comes to beliefs or philosophy.  Those
points are debatable.  But when you claim membership in an organization to
which you do not belong you become a liar.

I respect those on this list who have left the Baha'i Faith and _tell_
everyone the truth about their status.  Nima, Carol, Paul Johnson, Michael
McKenny, and the others don't hide the fact that they have left the Faith
and their points are made stronger because of it.  I don't hear Juan Cole
keeping his status a secret.

You are trying to deceive us all, and because I caught you red handed you
cry foul.  Too bad.  So keep posting about philosophy and beliefs.  Those
posts are welcome.  They add to the dialog.  They add another point of view.
But don't cry when you lie about a fact and someone uncovers it for the
world to see.

I do not hate you or feel spite for you.  As I have said before - there are
those on this list like the ones I mentioned above who I actually admire.
They have convictions and beliefs that run deep.  They are well spoken and
do not rely on SPAM and lies to get their point across.

The only thing I did was shed light on a lie.  The rest is up to you.

Oh by the way - if you really do believe that you are a member of the Baha'i
Community then I suggest you contact your nearest Baha'i friend, have them
contact National with your ID# and name and they will confirm what I have
already posted.  Any registered Baha'i can check for you.

Peace,

Dave

Patrick Henry wrote in message ...
>Ha, ha, ha, ha....
>
>My how desperate Bahai fundamentalists are....
>
>In lieu of any official communication directly from the uhj,
>describing what it imagines my offense might be and detailing
>the passages in the Writings that permits such spiritual terrorism,
>I am certainly not about to believe the claims and forgeries
>of rabidly hateful and spiteful fellow Bahais like this person....
>
>My soul and conscience are not under the control of the
>pathetically dishonest and oppressive uhj, nor are the souls
>of any of its other victims....
>
>I shall "cc" this message to the uhj so that they hear from
>me directly on the matter.
>
>--
>Patrick Henry.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
>The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
>https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm
>
>
>
><dfiorito@my-deja.com> wrote in message news:83dpqu$vnb$1@nnrp1.deja.com...
>> Fred is not a member of the Baha'i Community.  He was removed from the
>> roles in February of 1999.  The Baha'i ID that he displays on his
>> website is not valid.
>>
>> His claim of membership in the Baha'i Community is false.
>>
>> This was confirmed in a reply to my inquiry to the national center's
>> membership services.
>>
>> This was their reply:
>>
>> "Subject: Status of Fredrick Glaysher
>>
>>
>> To:  Mr. David Fiorito
>>
>> Dear Baha'i Friend,
>>
>> In response to your inquiry about the status of Mr. Fredrick Glaysher,
>> the records of the Baha'i National Center reflect that Mr. Glaysher's
>> name was removed from the membership rolls in February 1999, and he is
>> not considered to be a member of the Baha'i Faith.
>>
>> With loving Baha'i greetings,
>>
>> ****** * *********
>> For the Office of the Secretary

<SNIP a whole bunch of stuff>

From: <dfiorito@my-deja.com>
Subject: Re: REVISED: --bahai-- Messages to uhj regarding their Technique
Date: Friday, December 17, 1999 11:53 AM

Fred is not a member of the Baha'i Community.  He was removed from the
roles in February of 1999.  The Baha'i ID that he displays on his
website is not valid.

His claim of membership in the Baha'i Community is false.

This was confirmed in a reply to my inquiry to the national center's
membership services.

This was their reply:

"Subject: Status of Fredrick Glaysher

To:  Mr. David Fiorito

Dear Baha'i Friend,

In response to your inquiry about the status of Mr. Fredrick Glaysher,
the records of the Baha'i National Center reflect that Mr. Glaysher's
name was removed from the membership rolls in February 1999, and he is
not considered to be a member of the Baha'i Faith.

With loving Baha'i greetings,

****** * *********
For the Office of the Secretary

In article <s5kb85eiqrs71@corp.supernews.com>,
  "Patrick Henry" <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com> wrote:
> This file contains three messages: "to uhj 12-10-99," "to uhj 7-24-
1998,"
> and "The Baha'i Technique":
>
> From: Patrick Henry <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
> Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
> Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 8:33 AM
>
> Given the uhj's oppressive tactics and violation of the human rights
of
> Linda and John Walbridge, Stephen Scholl, other editors of the
> Dialogue magazine, the Bahai Encyclopedia editors who resigned in
> protest, David Langness, Juan Cole, Michael McKenny, Nima Hazini,
> former Assistant to the Auxiliary Board Paul Dodenhoff who resigned,
> and so on, and so on, and so on.... All the victims documented on my
> website.... I hesitate to put the uhj above any reprehensible act....
> Including conspiracy to murder Dr. Daniel Jordan.
>
> I have been a member of the Bahai faith since 1976. My ID Card
> may be found on my website. I have never been contacted by the uhj
> or any of its underlings to the contrary.
>
> Anything I have ever said is a matter of the sanctity of my individual
> God-given conscience that both Baha'u'llah and Abdul-Baha claimed
> would never be violated in their religion.
>
> I shall "cc" this message to the uhj so that they hear from me
directly
> on the matter.
>
> I would consider it an honor to be one of its official victims;
indeed,
> the highest spiritual achievement of my Bahai life, defending
Baha'u'llah's
> Teachings from the fanaticism that has overwhelmed and hamstrung his
> Revelation.
>
> --
> FG.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
> The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> (Confirmation of receipt by the uhj of the message above.)
> From: Incoming Electronic Communication Operations <ieco@bwc.org>
> Subject: Your Message Has Been Received...
> Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 5:36 AM
>
> Dear Friend,
>
> This is an automated acknowledgement.
>
> Your message regarding:
>
>      Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
>
> has been received at the Baha'i World Centre.
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> From: Patrick Henry patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com
> To: UHJ <secretariat@bwc.org>; Letters to Editor
<letters@nytimes.com>;
> bahai-faith @ makelist.com <bahai-faith@makelist.com>
> Subject: To UHJ July 24, 1998
> Date: Friday, July 24, 1998 9:03 PM
> July 24,1998
>
> Dear Members of the Universal House of Justice:
>
> As a Bahai, I am saddened by the news of the execution of yet
> another Bahai in Iran. However, the immediate public statements
> made by Firuz Kazemzadeh of the National Spiritual Assembly
> of the United States, reminiscent of Robert Henderson's piece in
> The New York Times on January 13th of this year, appear equally
> lamentable for their blatant hypocrisy: "We had hoped that President
> Khatami's assertions about freedom, justice and the rule of law in
Iran
> would apply to the Baha'is of that country.... We urge the
international
> community to protest vigorously Mr. Rowhani's killing and to seek
> justice for the beleaguered Iranian Baha'i community."
>
> The tragic loss of Bahai lives in Iran and the subsequent exploitation
> of their deaths by Bahai spokesmen, often in the American media,
> always courting the President and other members of the government,
> has become a predictable pattern rendered intolerable in the context
> of continuing and pervasive Bahai censorship and denial of human
> and civil rights in the United States and elsewhere.  Such incidents
as
> I queried you about in my unanswered email of March 31, 1997,
> available on my Web site, regarding the crushing of the magazine
> Dialogue, the resignations of a number of scholars from the Bahai
> Encyclopedia, the attacks on the listserv known as Talisman I at
> Indiana University, the harassing and blacklisting of many
individuals,
> Bahai and non-Bahai, suggest profoundly deep-seated problems within
> the Bahai community and administration.
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/To-UHJ1.htm
>
> To these incidents must now be added the apparent conspiracy for more
> than a year and a half of the Bahai Computer and Communications
> Committee (BCCA), under the chairmanship of Mark Towfiq, to defeat
> twice now, along with the collusion of other Bahais, the creation of
an
> unmoderated newsgroup on the Bahai Faith which would be known as
> talk.religion.bahai. You may find extensive documentation for all of
> these violations of the basic human rights of many Bahais and
> non-Bahais on my Web site, "The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom
> of Conscience": https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm
>
> Because the third interest poll for talk.religion.bahai on Usenet is
> approaching, after August 28th, I ask you again to investigate the
> BCCA and its depriving me of access last November from all private
> Bahai-only mailing lists at a crucial moment just when the tide of
> discussion was going very much in favor of the newsgroup, noted by
> many observers. I also ask whether you supported or were involved in
> that decision? The relevant files can be found on my Web site under
> Bahai-Discuss Archives.
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/archive.htm
>
> Similarly, I would like to know whether your institution or the BCCA
has
> approved of or advocated the recent ban of my email signature file by
> the moderators of soc.religion.bahai, as well as their complete ban
for
> more than a year and a half now on all discussion regarding
> talk.religion.bahai.
>
> The prevailing atmosphere of suppression of free speech and
> religious conscience that now characterizes the Bahai Faith cannot
> but call into question the honesty of many members of the Bahai
> administration and perhaps the institutions themselves.
>
> I ask once more whether censorship is allowed in the Bahai Faith and
> what passages of the Bahai Writings support it, what are the "rules,"
if
> you will, of Bahai censorship?
>
> --
> Patrick Henry.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
> The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm
>
> -------------------------------------------------------
>
> THE Baha'i Technique:
>
> During the last several years or more a number of observers have noted
> the common methods many Bahais use to avoid various issues or
> discredit people who hold opinions other than their own:
>
> May 12, 1992:
> "The Baha'i Faith has become very oppressive and manipulative of
> the individual.  That to me is merely a statement of fact, as I
> have experienced it, for nearly sixteen years now [over 22].  The
usual
> stratagem in dealing with anyone who would express his conscience
> in good faith is to pretend the Cause is above any kind of
> criticism whatsoever while intimating that anyone who would speak
> honestly must have something wrong with him, i.e., his spiritual
> life isn't what it should be, he doesn't understand the nature of
> unity, or he's accused of trying to obtain power for himself,
> which at times seems merely a calculated way of discrediting the
> person, and so on.  Another common strategy used to acquire
> control over the individual is to humor the person by letting him
> pour himself out, etc., and then self-righteously giving him the
> Truth."
>
> Ron House, November 14, 1997:
> "I know what you mean. I've found over the years that
> there is a technique used by traditional Baha'is and
> others to squash dissension: harry the dissenter so
> much he says something intemperate, then point out
> how 'loving' and 'compassionate' they are and how
> nasty the dissenter is. The trouble is that this
> technique works, so I've been making a conscious
> effort not to fall for it. Also, when they get the
> dissenter discouraged and miserable enough, he
> invariably makes a slip-up sooner or later that they
> can REALLY let loose the venom over. IMHO, they did
> this to you when you misread Sharon's intentions.
> At any other time, they would overlook faults, as
> Baha'u'llah says, but when they're in this mode
> they go for the jugular. Very sad."
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/House2.htm
>
> June 1998:
> "Some of the most striking methods demonstrated repeatedly by
> many Bahais during the last year and a half of discussion about
> an unmoderated newsgroup is their refusal to listen and respond to
> the criticisms of those who are in favor of talk.religion.bahai,
> ignoring their concerns, never responding analytically to their
> messages and reasoning and logic and evidence, attacking them
> through character assassination and ad hominem, ganging up
> on individuals, and "circling the wagons" around every action
> of the srb moderators or others who are opposed to
> talk.religion.bahai."
> "More than twenty different people on my web site have posted messages
> explaining their experience with srb censorship yet many srb Bahais
> NEVER address their concerns. Ignoring such charges will not make
> them go away.  NO ONE has to "try" to link the trb interest poll with
> censorship on srb; the moderators themselves have done that by
> suppressing droves of people for years. There are many people who
> believe such suppression is part and parcel of the Bahai
> community as it exists today. A YES vote need not necessarily
> support such a belief. There are other reasons Bahais might vote
> YES."
>
> Fran Baker, May 1998:
> "Just have to say that in my experience this is a common
> technique of manipulative people in general; it is especially
> effective with thoughtful people who are willing to see both
> sides of things, i.e., their own fault. I consider this brow-beating
> technique to be a form of abuse. The only way to deal with it is
> to call them on it every time and to refuse to let yourself be beat
> up, i.e., not to do your part of the "tango." This can be very hard
> to do, but it works.You can break this pattern in a personal
> relationship. I don't know whether it's possible when a group
> acts this way. Very scary."
>
> Dr. Juan Cole, June 12, 1998:
> "Let me ask you why in the world you think that I would risk my
> professional reputation by publicly stating falsehoods?  ...The very
> technique of the more glaze-eyed among these people is to
> unbearably bully a Baha'i whom they don't like, use unjustified
> threats of declaring him or her a CB to silence the individual, and
> if the person will not be silenced, then to depend upon the
gullibility
> of the Baha'is in refusing to listen to any victim's story because, of
> course, the Baha'i institutions are infallible and divinely guided and
> could never do anything wrong.  It is a perfect racket."
> "Of course, this technique of making liberals go away has been
> enormously successful, and ex-Baha'i liberals have no credibility
> with the remaining Baha'is nor do most of them have any energy
> to continue to make a case, either to the Baha'is or the outside
> world, for the incredible abuses that go on inside this organization
> ostensibly committed to tolerance!"
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Cole10.htm
>
> K. Paul Johnson, September 15, 1998:
> "If that principle [people are innocent until proven guilty]
> were followed by Baha'i administration and individuals in
> their condemnations of their fellow believers, I
> would have very little to complain about regarding Baha'i
> affairs.  But character assassination by innuendo is the
> preferred way of dealing with anything remotely resembling
> dissidence.  Seems like that's exactly what you're doing to Juan
> Cole in your message.  Saying I don't want to know what you've
> "got" on him, thus attacking me but insinuating you have some
> awful proof of unspecified guilt on his part.  If that's not
> character assassination by innuendo, what is?"
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Johnson18.htm
>
> Gibro28W, October 12, 1998:
> "In summary, the biggest problem, as I see it,
> is that most Baha'is don't take criticism seriously--they tune it out
as
> "negative" or "harmful to spiritual growth." This selfish
> attitude is very stupid. First of all, Baha'is entice people to join
> them. When they do, they indoctrinate them until they think like the
> group. But as soon as a red flare of doubt goes up in the convert's
> mind, they're cordoned off by the group and reminded of their
> "spiritual" obligations in the name of Baha'u'llah or the "Covenant."
> If left unresolved and doubt gives vent to prolonged criticism, the
> convert is sent packing or is kicked out. What we have here is a
> broken family that had failed to truly listen to the needs
> of its members in the first place."
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/srb73.htm
>
> Barthaman on September 14, 1998:
> "Baha'i dissenters, more or less, are wounded souls abandoned
> by their fathers,so-to-speak. They have been cast out and
> dismissed or shunned without having had a fair hearing. Consider
> their pain when the rest of their "family" dismisses them too.
> Can you know what it's like to be accused of heresy and shunned
> following a sincere intellectual conflict (inspired by doubt)--
> after you've sacrificed years in devoted service to your religion?
> Can you comprehend their sense of betrayal and injustice? This is
> why disillusioned believers leave their religions each year--while
> some still hang around, banging on the door now and then, demanding
> a refund for their lost youth. In time they will have to move on,
> however, writing the Baha'i Faith off as another lesson in fraud.
> Mock these people all you want--but for the grace of God, the next
> dissenter could be you. Don't be too confident, my friend."
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/srb66.htm
>
> Juan Cole wrote, February 23, 1999:
> "There is nothing to be puzzled by.  Right wing Baha'is only like to
> hear the sound of their own voices (which are the only voices they
> will admit to being "Baha'i" at all)."
>
> "Obviously, the world is so constructed that they cannot in fact only
> hear their own voices.  They are forced to hear other voices that
> differ from theirs.  This most disturbs them when the voices come from
> enrolled Baha'is or when the voices speak of the Baha'i faith."
>
> "The way they sometimes deal with the enrolled Baha'is is to summon
them
> to a heresy inquiry and threaten them with being shunned if they do
not
> fall silent."
>
> "With non-Baha'is or with ex-Baha'is, they deal with their speech
about
> the faith by backbiting, slandering and libelling the speaker.  You
will
> note that since I've been on this list I have been accused of long-
term
> heresy, of "claiming authority," of out and out lying (though that was
> retracted, twice), of misrepresentation, of 'playing fast and loose
> with the facts,'and even of being 'delusional.'  I have been accused
of
> all these falsehoods by *Baha'is*, by prominent Baha'is.  I have been
> backbitten by them."
>
> "This shows that all the talk about the danger a sharp tongue can do,
> all the talk about the need for harmony, for returning poison with
> honey, for a sin-covering eye, is just *talk* among right wing
> Baha'is.  No one fights dirtier than they when they discover a voice
> they cannot silence and cannot refute."
>
> "Paul Johnson has seen all these things, as well, for the past five
> years. He can explain it to you."
>
> Cf. K. Paul Johnson's general reflections on coercive techniques
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Johnson21.htm
>
> And LaAeterna's method of silencing opponents
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/srb65.htm
>
> Comments on the related techniques of Susan Maneck:
>
> Juan Cole, February 13, 1999:
> "It is a very, very, very weird religion.  And if anyone is reading
> Susan Maneck's absolutely bone-chilling screeds on the
> desirability of Heresy Trials and carefulness in Shunning,
> they are seeing what it is like at the core of the religion."
>
> "I really am sorry for them and her, since they seem sort of filled
with
> hate and quite paranoid, yet say they are preaching love, unity and
> tolerance. Susan will say, 'may your abdomen be split by lightning
> and your guts fall out you filthy heretic whom I wish I could just
have
> shunned and buried', and then she'll sign herself  "warmest"  and
> slander a university by adding it to her sig line.  As if what she is
> about has anything at all to do with *universities*!"
>
> February 15, 1999:
> "Ms. Maneck's approach appears to me to be always to
> shunt the discussion off or back to who said what where when
> why how and so on.... The farther back in time the better, since
> the person's memory, being human, is bound to be unable to
> keep up or to have stocked the evidence needed on his or her
> hard drive or find it on dejanews.com. And it then allows her
> to claim pretty much anything she wants to while seeming to
> have discredited her opponent. Further, she relies on the
> tactics of demagoguery knowing they usually prevail and will be
> supported by other fundamentalist Bahais. By shrieking
> "slander" and referring to others' opinions as "garbage," she is
> able to create an emotional atmosphere that essentially negates
> whatever the topic or content might be and that allows her to
> appear to win what is often a narrowly legalistic point or
> interpretation."
>
> "All of this is done, of course, in conjunction with her employing
> the more common Baha'i Techniques of intimidation and
> psychological demonization and terrorism."
>
> Maneck's scholarly reference to others' opinions as garbage:
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Maneck3.htm
>
> Maneck's scholarly reference to others' opinions as litter:
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Maneck7.htm
>
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Maneck1.htm
>
> This document at
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/technique.htm
>
> See The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm
>
> Professor Juan Cole, of the University of Michigan,
> discusses related issues in his journal article "The
> Baha'i Faith in America as Panopticon, 1963-1997":
>
> https://www-personal.umich.edu/~jrcole/bahai/1999/jssr/bhjssr.htm
>
> Also see:
>
> Full Text of UHJ's Letter of April 7, 1999
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/UHJLetterApril71999.htm
>
> Juan Cole, "Commentary" on UHJ's "outburst of vehement ignorance"
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Outburst.htm
>
> Letter of Resignation from Paul Dodenhoff, Assistant to the Auxiliary
> Board
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/LetterResignationPD.htm
>
> --
> Patrick Henry.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
> The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
> https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm
>
>

Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.From: Juan Cole <jrcole@umich.edu>
To: Fred Glaysher <FG@hotmail.com>
Subject: Re: letter of House
Date: Friday, July 02, 1999 4:40 AM

THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE
BAHA'I WORLD CENTRE

Department of the Secretariat
                                              7 April 1999
To all National Spiritual Assemblies

Dear Baha'i Friends,

        Issues Related to the Study of the Baha'i Faith

In May of 1998, Baha'i Canada reproduced a collection of letters which the
Universal House of Justice had written to various individuals on the
subject of the academic study of the Baha'i Faith. Copies of this
compilation were subsequently mailed by the Canadian National Spiritual
Assembly to its sister Assemblies. The reprint has now been made generally
available in booklet form by the United States Baha'i Publishing Trust. The
House of Justice has asked us to forward you a copy of the latter
publication with the following comments.

As a number of the friends are aware, a campaign of internal opposition to
the Teachings is currently being carried on through the use of the
Internet, a communications system that now reaches virtually every part of
the world. Differing from attacks familiar in the past, it seeks to recast
the entire Faith into a socio-political ideology alien to Baha'u'llah's
intent. In the place of the institutional authority established by His
Covenant, it promotes a kind of interpretive authority which those behind
it attribute to the views of persons technically trained in Middle East
studies.

Early in 1996, the deliberate nature of the plan was revealed in an
accidental posting to an Internet list which Baha'i subscribers had
believed was dedicated to scholarly exploration of the Cause. Some of the
people responsible resigned from the Faith when Counsellors pointed out to
them the direction their activities were taking. A small number of others
continue to promote the campaign within the Baha'i community.

In the past, in situations of a somewhat similar nature, the patience and
compassion shown by 'Abdul-Baha and the Guardian helped various believers
who had been misled by ill-intentioned persons to eventually free
themselves from such entanglements. In this same spirit of forbearance the
Universal House of Justice has intervened in the current situation only to
the extent that has been unavoidable, trusting to the good sense and the
goodwill of the believers involved to awaken to the spiritual dangers to
which they are exposing themselves. Nevertheless, certain Counsellors and
National Spiritual Assemblies are monitoring the problem closely, and the
friends can be confident that whatever further steps are needed to protect
the integrity of the Cause will be taken.

As passages in the enclosed reprint make clear, this campaign of internal
opposition -- while purporting to accept the legitimacy of the Guardianship
and the Universal House of Justice as twin successors of Baha'u'llah and
the Centre of His Covenant -- attempts to cast doubt on the nature and
scope of the authority conferred on them in the Writings. When other
Baha'is have pointed out that such arguments contradict explicit statements
of the Master, persons

------------------------------------------------------------------------
To all National Spiritual Assemblies                  7 April 1999
          Page 2

behind the scheme have responded by calling into question the soundness of
'Abdul-Baha's own judgement and perspective. Gradually, these arguments
have exposed the view of those involved that Baha'u'llah Himself was not
the voice of God to our age but merely a particularly enlightened moral
philosopher, one whose primary concern was to reform existing society.

By itself, such opposition would likely stand little chance of influencing
reasonably informed Baha'is. As one of the letters in the enclosed reprint
(20 July 1997) points out, the scheme relies for effect, therefore, on
exploiting the confusion created in modern thought by the reigning
doctrines of materialism. Although the reality of God's continuous
relationship with His creation and His intervention in human life and
history are the very essence of the teachings of the Founders of the
revealed religions, dogmatic materialism today insists that even the nature
of religion itself can be adequately understood only through the use of an
academic methodology designed to ignore the truths that make religion what
it is.

In general, the strategy being pursued has been to avoid direct attacks on
the Faith's Central Figures. The effort, rather, has been to sow the seeds
of doubt among believers about the Faith's teachings and institutions by
appealing to unexamined prejudices that Baha'is may have unconsciously
absorbed from non-Baha'i society. In defiance of the clear interpretation
of 'Abdul-Baha and the Guardian, for example, Baha'u'llah's limiting of
membership on the Universal House of Justice to men is misrepresented as
merely a "temporary measure" subject to eventual revision if sufficient
pressure is brought to bear. Similarly, Shoghi Effendi's explanation of
Baha'u'llah's vision of the future Baha'i World Commonwealth that will
unite spiritual and civil authority is dismissed in favour of the assertion
that the modern political concept of "separation of church and state" is
somehow one that Baha'u'llah intended as a basic principle of the World
Order He has founded. Particularly subtle is an attempt to suggest that the
Mashriqu'l-Adhkar should evolve into a seat of quasi-doctrinal authority,
parallel to and essentially independent of the Local House of Justice,
which would permit various interests to insinuate themselves into the
direction of the life processes of the Cause.

Typically, when misrepresentations of the kind described are challenged,
the reaction of those behind the campaign has been to claim that their
civil rights are being threatened, an assertion that is of course
meaningless in the light of the purely voluntary nature of Baha'i
membership. Much emphasis is placed by them also on academic freedom, their
view of which proves, on examination, to be merely freedom on their part to
pervert scholarly discourse to the promotion of their own ideological
agenda, while seeking to exclude from discussion features of the Baha'i
Faith that are central to the Writings of its Founders.

The effect of continued exposure to such insincerity about matters vital to
humanity's well-being is spiritually corrosive. When we encounter minds
that are closed and hearts that are darkened by evident malice, Baha'u'llah
urges that we leave such persons to God and turn our attention to the
opportunities which multiply daily for the promotion of the truths which He
teaches. In words written at the direction of the Guardian, regarding a
situation similar to, though much less serious than, the present one, " ...
the friends should be advised to just leave these people alone, for their
influence can be nothing but negative and destructive...."

------------------------------------------------------------------------
To all National Spiritual Assemblies                    7 April 1999
          Page 3

The enclosed material is being sent to your Assembly less out of concern
over the immediate situation, which is being systematically addressed, than
because of longer-term considerations to which it lends perspective. What
we are currently seeing, in a relatively primitive form, is the emergence
of a new kind of internal opposition to Baha'u'llah's Mission. While it
will no doubt assume other features as time passes, it is a kind of
opposition that takes aim directly at Baha'u'llah's assertion of the
spiritual nature of reality and of humanity's dependence on the
interventions of Divine Revelation.

Developments of the kind described will come as no surprise to friends who
are familiar with the Guardian's description of the successive waves of
"crisis" and "victory" that have marked the history of the Faith ever since
its inception. It is precisely this cyclical process, Shoghi Effendi says,
that has propelled the steady unfoldment of Baha'u'llah's intent, testing
our commitment to His Teachings, purifying His community, and releasing a
greater measure of the capacities latent in His Revelation. That resistance
to Baha'u'llah should now be emerging in yet a new guise is itself a
tribute to the gathering strength of the Cause, offering the friends
everywhere new opportunities for the deepening of their faith and the
energizing of their work.

                        With loving Baha'i greetings,
                         ...
                         For Department of the Secretariat
Enclosure
cc: International Teaching Centre

From: <pdodenhoff@my-deja.com>
Subject: Letter of Resignation
Date: Friday, June 25, 1999 10:43 PM

Dear friends,
    As you are aware there has been much discussion about the recent
letter dated April 7, 1999 from the Universal House of Justice
concerning issues related to the study of the Baha'i Faith. And as you
know, these issues have long been a serious concern of mine and many
others who are engaged in various academic pursuits including the study
of religion.
    Over the past weeks, I have read the letter from the House many
times and given it a great deal of consideration, thought and prayer.
When I first read the letter after it appeared on Baha'i Studies, I was
shocked. Considering the dialogue that I thought had begun between the
Administrative Order and Baha'i scholars in February of 1998 at our
meeting in Teaneck, I felt upon reading it, and still do, that this
letter painted with a very broad brush all scholars who are engaged in
the academic study of religion.
    I do not think it would serve here to give a detailed statement of
the many points which I find objectionable in the letter. Until now I
have maintained a middle position concerning the use of certain
methodologies in the study of the Baha'i Faith and have been open
regarding the areas in which I agree or disagree with certain
individuals or with the Baha'i Administration regarding the role of
Baha'i scholars.
    However, I do think it necessary to say that, as one who is
particularly engaged in the study of New Religious Movements, I find
this letter very disturbing. The very tone of the letter displays an
attitude which I find difficult ot reconcile with my understanding of
the Faith of Baha'u'llah. It states clearly that the methods used in
the academic study of religion are "designed to ignore the truths that
make religion what it is" and that they, and by inference those that
use them, are tainted by the "reigning doctrines of materialism." Apart
from the fact that this appears to me to reveal at least a
misunderstanding of the proper use of methodologies and their purpose
in academic studies, this statement has overtones that can only be
described, in my opinion, as fundamentalist in nature. This appears to
become even more evident as the reference to the emphasis certain
individuals place on academic freedom is demonized as an attempt to
"pervert scholarly discourse," an assertion I find particularly
objectionable. Indeed, it would appear that the proper use of scholarly
discourse, according to the inferences made in the letter, should be
nothing more than an exercise in apologetics for the Baha'i Faith. I
have no quarrel with apologetics and its role in religion. But it has
no place in academic studies where the  truth claims of any tradition
are beyond the purview of the academic endeavor to prove or disprove.
These are matters of the spirit and the heart which are beyond the
limitation of any methodology to understand. However, despite that
limitation, methods are developed to help us understand the actualities
of religion in historical and sociological contexts. Without such
understanding, and the vital healthy criticism that can strengthen a
faith community, religion eventually devolves into mere ritual,
superstition, formality and authoritarianism. It may be true that there
are some scholars who, even as people of faith, take what appears to be
an extreme approach in the use of methodologies when studying religion.
I can understand better those of my colleagues who claim no faith as
their own or who even reject faith altogether, where in such cases it
is appropriate to rely on "materialistic" methods. And I believe that
to some extent an understanding is gained through such endeavors.
Contrary to the statement in the April 7 letter, though, I have never
met nor have I ever heard any  scholar of religion claim that "religion
itself can be adequately understood only through the use of an academic
methodology." Indeed, it has been my experience that most are still not
agreed on what constitutes a proper definition of religion. Yes, there
are some who may claim to fully understand religion and who take an
adversarial stance against anythng that would reflect an attitude of
faith, but I have found, to the credit of the academy, that this is not
reflective of all scholars. Most simply object to the attempt to inject
ideas such as revelation or spirit into an academic discussion of
religion, an objection with which I concur. It seems that the April 7
letter reveals a desire within Baha'i Administration to "have ones cake
and eat it, too" for while it rejects these methodologies as "dogmatic
materialism" it seeks to be accepted, on terms of its own making, into
the very arena of discourse it so decries, an arena in which method,
not revelation, is the tool used to understand religion. Yet, it is
true that methods are simply tools which, like scholarship in general,
have a proper and an improper use. Now one may not approve of the way
an individual or individuals use their tools and is free to express
that disapproval. But in doing so, one should not be surprised if they
receive an equal amount of criticism for the manner in which they use
their own tools! In this case, the April 7 letter from the House
criticizes _what they perceive to be_ an improper use of methodologies.
Is it any surprise, then, that some scholars who work with those
methodologies, Baha'i and non-Baha'i, are critical of the application
of something as subjective as revelation and faith in engaged academic
discourse? I think not. Rather than seeking common ground and _on an
active, daily basis, engaging in  serious consultation _for the purpose
of understanding each other_ both sides have become polarized, a
situation exacerbated by this letter.  It is unfortunate and not a
little frightening to read this letter with its "us against them" tone
so prominently displayed. More than that, it is saddening to see that
the letter did not make any attempt to assure the NSA's to whom it was
sent that this may not be a reference to all Baha'i academics. In light
of the recent events in some parts of the U.S., where some individuals
have been subjected to the indignity of an investigation because of
their beliefs, one would suppose that such assurances would be included
in the letter. While it may be argued that the letter was meant to be
private, only for the NSA's, one should not be surprised that it turned
up on the internet and that it caused such pain. More surprising than
that, I believe, is the publishing of it in the latest edition of
Baha'i Canada without any commentary or contextualization. Imagine the
effect this will no doubt have on those who are already suspicious of
academic methods and those that engage in academic study! More than the
letter itself, I find this action particularly irresponsible.

     As I said above, I was shocked when I first read this letter. I
was also very angry. And I suppose that in some measure I still am. But
over the past few weeks consideration of the contents of this letter
have caused Lisa and I to step back and reconsider some of the issues
which concern us, particularly those with which we have struggled as
members of the Baha'i Faith. The result has been a recognition that,
despite our love for the Baha'i Faith, and for the many friends we have
made as part of the Baha'i community, there are some issues which, if
we are to be honest with ourselves and with the Baha'i Faith, call for
an obedience which we cannot give.
    One of these, for me, is the issue of review, a process which I
find repressive and distasteful as a scholar, and one to which I simply
would not submit. Despite the assurances that it is only temporary, it
is still a present reality which shows no sign of being abolished in
the near future.
    Another is the ban on living as a practicing homosexual while a
Baha'i. Both Lisa and I have always taken a clear stand on gay and
lesbian rights. For us, that clearly meant that gays and lesbians have
the right to live _completely_ in same-sex relationships, including
marriage and child-rearing. Indeed, we can point to many gay friends
who have marriage relationships which put many heterosexual marriages
to shame and who are raising happy, well-adjusted children. It was not
until after I became a Baha'i that I learned, on my own, of the
teachings on this issue. I was dismayed, but tried to convince myself
that I could live with this and could simply be quiet on the issue.
Lisa became a Baha'i thinking that it would be easy enough to avoid the
issue, and both of us held out hope that the Faith would soon change
its stand on this issue. By the time it became a reality that this
would not happen, we had convinced ourselves, or so we thought, that
the issue wasn't important.  Similarly, we had the same feelings
concerning women serving on the House of Justice.
    But, over the past weeks, we have come to realize just how
important these and other social matters are to us. We became convinced
that the spiritual reality of the Mashriqu'l-Adkhar has been, for the
most part, forgotten or ignored. Having been raised in a tradition in
which I was, from my earliest years on, engaged in social welfare work,
I find and Lisa doesas well, that  I am uncomfortable with the spending
of Baha'i funds for the Arc project while there are so many other ways
in which they could be used to help so many who desperately need it.
While I do not wish to be critical, I must express my doubt that the
completion of the Arc will mean little to the single mother trying to
raise children on her own or the homeless family who have no place to
sleep other than unsafe shelters or cardboard boxes. And while some may
say that we should use "individual initiative" in such matters (which
we do), and while we grant there are many individual Baha'is who do
such vital work, it must be acknowledged that Baha'is are a _community_
and as such should be addressing these issues as a body of believers on
the local, national and international levels in equal measure to those
of other traditions.
    Most distressing, though, has been the growing sense of fear that
can be observed within certain parts of the Baha'i community. As an
assistant, I have grown increasingly uncomfortable with the seeming
need to keep track of and report on the activities of individuals,
something which I initially thought to be necessary to protect the
Covenant and serve the cause. But recent events have convinced Lisa and
me that such practices, and especially the notion that anyone may at
any time be "investigated," are out of keeping with both the teachings
of Baha'u'llah and with who we are and what we believe about the
essence of religion. Having been raised in a tradition in which I was
constantly fearful of "losing my salvation" due to some action or
thought, a notion with which I lived for much of my life, I will not
allow such fear to again stifle the spiritual growth of myself or that
of my family.
    Central to the Baha'i Faith is a trust in the institutions of the
Administrative Order and, one would assume, a trust of the individual
by the Administration. I have increasingly come to lose that trust in
the Administrative Order, and especially with the release of this
latest letter. Let me be clear, though, that this does not reflect in
any way on the individual members of those institutions, most of whom I
have never met. I am certain that they are all doing the best they can
in their positions to administer the affairs of the Baha'i Faith in a
faithful and honest manner, even as they are subject to human
frailties,  which we believe can indeed interfere with openness to and
understanding of the Divine will, a human predicament with which we all
wrestle.
    As a result of this recognition, we believe that it is best for us,
and for the Baha'i Faith, to formally submit our resignation. In doing
so, we recognize that there will be some who will, depsite anything we
may say, accuse us of rejecting Baha'u'llah. However, as one's faith
can be conditioned by no one but one's self, we want to make clear here
that we still believe Baha'u'llah to be the Manifestation of God. Our
relationship to and understanding of Baha'u'llah is something which we
must work out for ourselves apart from "official" involvement within
the Administrative Order. of the Baha'i Faith. I believe it is
necessary to also state for the record, despite our resignation, we
believe that, based on the evidence of the texts, it is clear that the
legitimate authority for the Baha'i community is the Universal House of
Justice whose seat is on Mt. Carmel and the Adminstrative Order in the
various parts of the globe. We reject, simply based on facts, any
pretense to authority of any other alleged "Baha'i" body or
individuals.
    Most importantly, we believe that by resigning, we will avoid being
a cause of disunity within the community. For were we to remain, we
could not, in good conscience, remain silent about these and other
issues which are important to us.
    Our purpose in writing this letter has been only to explain,
perhaps at greater length than we initially desired,  why we are taking
this step. Our decision has been our own. There have been some close
friends with whom we have discussed this matter and who have given us
their honest advice. None of them have advised us to leave, some have
suggested we stay and try to just "go about our business," but all of
them have given their support and love and all will remain our close
friends. We pray that this is true for all of you whom we have had the
great bounty of knowing and still love with all our hearts.

With warmest love,
Paul and Lisa Dodenhoff



Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Share what you know. Learn what you don't.From: Mr Mahdi <mrmahdi@aol.com>
Subject: Re: Article by Vance Salisbury concerning the bahai faith
Date: Friday, December 17, 1999 12:10 AM

One of the most stupid people I ever encountered speaks again after finding out
that fake Hadith about the "27 letters" doesnt exist (Adelard, what happened,
you found out that fake hadith didnt exist, that is why you didnt post here in
a while?):

> Unlikely in former religions like islam  ,when a mullah( i.e., a
>Khomeini) could impose some understandings and beliefs  of koran  on
>believers, 

What a stupid ignorant statement.  There are no "mulla" in Islam, mulla is a
shi'a invention.  Futhermore, Muhammad (saaw), the Sahabah (ra), etc., were
never "mullas."  

And your statement of "mullas imposing understanding and beliefs of koran"
shows how ignorant and biased you are when it comes to Islam.  No "mulla" told
me what the Quran meant, most of the Quran is clear and certain verses requires
deeper understanding because of the historicity and implications of the verses.
 Islam has no clergy, Muhammad (saaw) and the Sahabah (ra) were never clergy.

Your simple-minded blind faith makes you ignore the numerous editing in your
books.  Abdul baha made countless number of false prophecies, mistakes,
blunders, etc., but despite this, your simplicity and spiritual and
intellectual gullibleness makes you STILL believe in the bahai faith.  Bahais
realized the mistakes of bahaullah, bab, abdul baha and others, so as a selfish
dishonest religion, they had to edit their own books hoping to cover up the
lies and mistakes.

>The bahai faith is not a mullahood and califatism, our decisions are made
>in committees with consultation .

Man this guy is ignorant.  There is consultation in Islam, it is called
SHURA!!!

The rest of post was nothing but a pro-censorship advertisement.  This just
shows how "insincere" you are when it comes to the truth, and that you want to
hide and censor certain information that tells the truth about your false
religion.  And people have the nerve to attack Fred Glaysher for exposing the
censorship and extremism within the bahai faith.

Mahdi

https://hometown.aol.com/mrmahdiFrom: "Milissa Boyer Kafes" <milissa8320@my-deja.com>
Subject: Re: Universal Declaration of Human Rights & Marshall Case
Date: Monday, April 03, 2000 12:24 AM

In article <8c7rb60kqu@news2.newsguy.com>,
"Rick Schaut" <RSSchaut@email.msn.NOSPAMcom> wrote:
>
> Milissa Boyer Kafes <milissa8320@my-deja.com> wrote in message
> news:8c71av$kiv$1@nnrp1.deja.com...
> > So, it seems that Baha'is say material things, like property, and
civil
> > rights are protected but the *soul* is fair game.
>
> First of all, that's not "Baha'is", Ms. Kafes. It's just me. Singular.
> Please don't go attributing my individual opinion to the institutions
or to
> Baha'is in general. I don't recall ever saying that I'm supposed to
be a
> spokesperson for the Baha'i Faith, and I will, quite frankly, thank
you to
> not try to turn me into one.

"Baha'is" was a reference to the Faith proper, not you particularly or
as a spokesperson for the Faith.  So I will, quite frankly, thank you
for not twisting my words, Mr Schaut! geez!

> > Secondly, my contention isn't about any abstract notion of
"protection".
> It's my opinion that these are the things protected by the Universal
> Declaration of Human Rights, and that this declaration cannot
reasonbly be
> construed to apply to the mutual agreement between individual and
> organization regarding membership in that organization.

Actually, one would reasonably expect that, in an organization founded
directly by God Himself, a person would have *more* rights than in a
document conceived by mere mortals. The NSA does say that human rights
are God-given rights. If they are given by God and not by secular
society, then it is reasonable to assume that they would be upheld
within God's organization as well as without.

But people should at least be aware of the fact that they will be
expected to give up some of the rights guaranteed to them by secular
society when they become Baha'i.  I believe that the Faith, by touting
how wonderful the UDHR is, is obscuring that fact in their promotional
literature. When the NSA wrote: "an equal standard of human rights must
be upheld throughout the world"  they should have been more forthcoming
and wrote: "an equal standard of human rights must be upheld throughout
the world, except by us since we are a voluntary organization."

> Thirdly, the reason for stating that none of Ms. Marshall's civil
rights have
> been curtailed in the slightest degree is to show that, unlike other
> religious organizations to which the Baha'i Faith has been compared
in this
> very thread, Baha'i institutions do not resort to any infringement of
any
> civil liberty in order to coerce people into remaining members of the
Faith
> or to "punish" (if that's even the right word) people for leaving the
Faith.

What I am looking at is the reverse.  If someone wants to belong to the
Faith, and has broken no Baha'i law, how can they be coerced into
leaving it?

> Lastly, how does one reach the conclusion that the soul is "fair
game"? I'm
> afraid I simply don't follow the reasoning. Are you claiming that the
due
> process provisions enshrined in documents like the Universal
Declaration of
> Human Rights should be extended to questions of membership in the
Baha'i
> Faith merely because, within the Baha'i Faith, having one's
membership card
> handed back is considered to have significant consequences? Why
should any
> secular standard be imposed on Baha'i institutions for what is a
completely
> internal matter? Are the due process provision that exist within the
Baha'i
> Faith somehow inadequate for the protection of basic human rights? If
so,
> please demonstrate how.

You say that "the due process provision that exist within the Baha'i
Faith"...I have to ask what due process provision was followed in this
case?  Alison got an email message informing her of the decision
completely out of the blue! And it was vague.  She was not accused of
breaking any specific law.  If there is no due process for an internal
matter involving a Baha'i, how can non-Baha'is be sure that, in the
event a country becomes majority Baha'i, they as the minority will be
protected?  You can tout this as an internal matter all you want, but
how internal matters are handled are the *only* way for non-Baha'is to
judge whether you are any good or not. You won't be judged solely on
nice sounding proclamations and statements from your administrative
institutions.

So, since there was no process at all in this case, its impossible to
tell how it compares to the secular standard!  And the fact that such
an event, an expulsion, has such serious *spiritual* consequences,
(according to Shoghi Effendi) the fact that due process (*however* you
define it!), that any process, was not followed is amazing, in the
least. This is what I mean by the soul being fair game.

But, in the end, it seems the real sticking point is this whole "mutual
agreement" idea.   When you made your *mutual agreement* with the
Faith, did you agree that they had the right to summarily expel you,
and give you no specific reason for doing so? *mutual* means it has to
go both ways, which is why you have to look at not only at the right of
an organization to define membership but also at the rights of the
member who, having lived up to their agreement, want to remain.

Peace,
Milissa Boyer Kafes
milissabk@freewwweb.com


Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.From: TLCULHANE <tlculhane@aol.com>
Subject: My case - a letter to my friends
Date: Wednesday, July 28, 1999 2:12 PM

  Dear Friends,

    I had hoped my case would not be a topic of public conversation and
especially an uninformed topic of conversation. One of the dangers of lack of
knowledge is sheer speculation that allows for the assertion of preformed
ideological templates to dominate discourse.

   Please consider this an open letter to my friends. It will be the only
public response I will make. If anyone wishes to continue to speak with me
about it I will do that in a private conversation as among friends. 

    In February I had a meeting with two ABm's. The original purpose of the
meeting was to gather information about a workshop I had presented at Bosch
Bahai school. Two people (out of 62 attendees) had written to the House of
Justice protesting what they understood about my comments. 

  The House of Justice passed the 'protest message' to the NSA and the
Continental Counselors for follow up. The Counselors in turn authorized two
ABm's to meet with me to gather information about what had taken place at
Bosch. So far so good.

    One of the ABm's concluded that this was an opportunity to do more than
inquire after information. This person effectively conducted the meeting as
though it was an interrogation of my theological views among them my views of
the station of Baha u llah, my interest in the Maiden writings of Baha u llah
and ,of course, my discussion of the Mashriqu l Adhkar . That was the problem
as well as how the meeting was arranged and conducted by the ABm. 

  I was not informed two ABm's would be present, nor who authorized the meeting
or to whom the ABm's would be reporting.

   Friends I am quite human and cycled through a series of emotions from anger
to betrayal,to disgust, to bewilderment and frustration and relief. I went
thorugh this twice, once in February and again in May after the April 7 letter
became public. 

  How did I handle this 'test' of my faith and why have I *chosen* to remain a
Bahai? The simple explanation is I love Baha u llah. As many of you know I am a
mystic by temperament which explains my attraction to the spiritual and social
reality of the Mashriqu l Adhkar and the "Maiden " writings of Baha u llah.
Both times during my "emotional cycle" S/He came to me and I was draped in that
"silken Robe of Light." As best I can describe in words we "talked" about my
pain and anguish and " My distress and banishment in this remote prison." This
is the personal God who reached in and touched my soul and said I understand
and shared with me that "perfume of a grace which to tongue can describe." I
was reminded that "this not a field for the foolish and faint of heart." If I
thought the vision of Baha u llah was easily realized, that all the hope and
redemption that His message represents was attainable without effort or without
transformation I learned better. The course of human history in general and
religious history in particular will change but it will be through
multigenerational blood sweat and spirtual tears.

  In the midst of this struggle I wrote to the Counselors and the House of
Justice , the latter on March 30. I have met with Counselor Birkland twice and
we have spoken fro several hours about my case and what I called in my letter
to the House the "far too widespread culture of fear and suspicion in the
community.

  The Counselor extened me an apology for what happened and he assumed
responsibility for it. There was no passing the buck or kicking the proverbial
dog in his response to me. Our conversations were honest ,open and reflective
on both our parts. He was gracious and loving in his conversations with me. he
also clearly said to me that as Counselor he has no problem with my theological
views and they were not at issue.  This saga has also affected my community and
he has been most supportive of the LSA and its goals and has publically
expressed that support. I have greast respect for anyone who is capable of
admitting mistakes,assuming responsibility for them and looking for ways to
move forward and heal divisions and misunderstandings. This is exactly how
Counselor Birkland responded to me and therfore it can be stated I have great
respect for his character as a man. 
  In the course of my conversations with the Counselor and my observation of
his interaction with the LSA and the community I have been able to observe in
action what I write about as the *ethic* of consultation and its requirements
of mutual recognition and reciprocity. I understand consultation to be a *non
adversarial* form of communicative action and the recognition and reciprocity
involved is fundamentally about the recognition (the irfan) tha we are all made
in the image and likeness of God. That is the starting point of Bahai discourse
in my view. I have observed the Counselor engage what I write about.  I had
similar conversations with Counselor Ghadirian, and Paul Dodenhoff will
understand my reference here, whom I found to be an example of Abraham Heschels
"analysis of piety." 

  In late May the famous April 7 letter became public.I was very concerned
about its reference to the Mashriqu l Adhkar as I had raised this question
directly with the House in my March 30 letter to them. This letter , which I
have said before and wil state again is one of the more poorly written letters
to come from the World Centre. Poor writing style is somethging which can be
clarified and improved upon.Iit is not *proof" of dictatorial behavior. On may
26 I wrote a summary of my views of the Mashriqul Adhkar and sent a copy of
it,with reference to my March 30 letter to the House of Justice. On May 31 I
received a letter from the House of Justice which stated: 
    " The House of Justice very much appreciates the clarity and candor of your
expression in regard to the issues troubling you.  It wishes, first of all, for
you to be assured that it did not say or feel that you had violated any of its
policies or had been disobedient to it in relation to your discussions about
the Mashriqu'l-Adhkar."

 The response of the House of Justice ia hardly a case of "Plausibility
structures and denial. I am perfectly capable of discussing "plausability" as
it is used in the sociology of knowledge especially as formulated by Berger and
Luchmann.The ideological twist to it is innacurate on theoertical grounds and
inapplicable to the coments of the House of Justice. Their letter was a
response to my questions two months earlier before anything related to the
April 7 letter becamea public issue. The disingenious combination of the
sociologocal concept of plausability structuresd  with the ideological concept
of "plausible denial" is an example of a preformed template that will generate
conclusions even in the absence of substantive knowledge of a case. In this
situation the facts of my case. 

   My conversations with the Counseolrs have reinforced  my convivtion that
this comm ent in the April 7 letter did not and was not intended to refer to my
actions. As early as March 20 Counselor Birklnad reiterated that point to me in
our conversation. I aslo know for a *fact* that the Counselor had been in
communication with the World Centre about my case and that the House wanted the
Counselor to meet with me and resolve this problem.
  Furthermore the House of Justice wrote:

  "That the meeting to which you were invited by the Auxiliary Board members
became a cause of distress to you is deeply regretted by the House of Justice.
But it was glad to learn from your email that Counsellor Stephen Birkland met
with you subsequently in a sympathetic attempt to remedy the difficulties of
your experience.  You should therefore feel assured that your concern has been
taken seriously and an earnest attempt made to deal with it.  The House of
Justice trusts that the burden of your heart has thus been relieved and that
you can now refocus your energies on continuing your dedicated service to the
Cause."

   Friends,  dictators and totalitarians do not express  deep regret that a
soul was disressed or estranged by certian actions. They most assuredly do not
take steps or direct that steps be taken to resolve the anguish or distess of
*one human being. yet that is exactly what the House of Justice did in my case.
They intervened on my behalf because of the mistakes that were made in my case
by Institutional representatives.

  For anyone who is unable to distinguish bettwen acts of love and care and
hypocritical PR damage control I have compassion.  This kind of cynical linkage
is an example Orwellian newspeak where love becomes hate. Are we really so long
gone and so far from Baha u llah that acts of love, kindness,magnanimity cannot
be perceived  for what they are?Iis the world truly that barren ?

  I am many things but pollyanna is not one of them. I am Jamesian twice born
soul who has hope. And that hope involves believing in spite of the evidence
and watching the evidence change. It is easy to be cynical. In a world that
needs the hope and promise that life can be lived at a higher level and that
needs to know human history canchange,however slowly or haltingly cynicism and
prolonged despair is a betrayal of the centuries long aspirations of human
beings. I believe with all my heart that anyone,of whatever background or
religious tradition who indulges such despair has not simply forgotten God but
has forgotten humanity. My challenge to my friends is to forego the temptation
of cynicism and despair because the "wondrous system" of Baha u llah has not
attained perfection. Perfection and transformation do not happen in the
abstract they happen with real human beings. The "system" of Baha u llah will
only function as well as the people who comprise it. Their is much work to be
done and it is the spiritual obligation of each of us to engage the struggle of
hope and redemption in both it smeaning of overcoming 'sin' and imperfection 
and as the fulfillment of a promise. 
 I dont say this inognorance. I say this as one who has had his faith severely
tested in ways that are only meaningful to me. in the past year  both my
daughters bran surgery and stroke and my threological interogation have been
major spurituakl battles. They have rocked me at the core of me being. Baha u
llah uppoed the ante for terry Culhane. I want to "see": my beloeved and She
sais "howmany Husayns greater thanthee have professed their love. I hope my
willingness to engage the struggle and keep turning to Baha ullah is some
measure of my love. I often said that if ones wants Paradise, Baghdad the abode
of peace,the road to that *place* passes through Tehren and the Siyah Chal. 
Each of us has our Siyah Chal our secret place of feasr and despair of dreans
lost and hopes dashed. yet I can say that  we are never alne , the odder of
that silken Robe of Light is there. Our response is a matter of "learning the
art of loves ways and the secret of heart surrender." My dear friends go head
and learn that art and surrender. Give yourself permission! I am a nobody, a
garden level mystic who Baha u llah did not abandon and who the House of
Justice did not abandon. 

 The House is keenly aware of the limitations and imperfections of the
community ,including the functioning of its administrative bodies And they did
not ask me to preten all was yet paradise, there was no denial nor attempt to
stiffle me ot shut me up. They acknowledge reality but  hey refuse to sink into
a cynical despair.
  They offered me the same challenge Baha u llah has offered me to believe and
do the work in spite of any evidence and to watch and make the evidence change.

 In response to my concerns about problems "mistakes" and the culture of fear
and suspicion that I noted they wrote"

  " A perspective that may assist in your review of the experience is that
the institutions of the Faith operating throughout the world, like individual
believers, are struggling to achieve the high ideals set for them in the
Writings, and they inevitably make some mistakes even with the best of motives.
Fortunately, the consequences of such mistakes often provide them with the
empirical bases for shaping their evolution towards maturity.  To the extent
that the individuals affected are able to deal successfully, both spiritually
and practically, with the tests involved, the institutions and individuals
derive mutual benefits.  The believers and their God-given institutions are
intimately joined in a common endeavor to advance the development of a new
World Order.  A significant degree of magnanimity on the part of each is
essential."

  The House of Justice openly acknowledges mistakes were made and have been
made. Please be fair in your judgement. Do dictators openly acknowledge
mistakes on the part of governing bodies and express *hope* that both those
governing bodies and the individuals harmed will learn from them and move
forward?  

     They express the recognition that mistakes are trying and can cause
"distress" to souls. They also expres the *Hope* that individuals such as
myself will 'hang in there.' And most important they recognize that ';hanging
inther ' requires 'magnanimity". Even a dictoinary can provide us with the
richness and challenge of the concept of magnanimity. Yet in the midst of all
that  and inthe recognition of mistakes they asked me to consider  the
struggles of the Institutions in our common enterprise. In other words they
asked me to consult, to put *my money where my mouth is about consultation as
mutual recognition and reciprocity. That recognition is that we are in this
together. Not withstanding that request they close that section of my letter
with the following comment. 
 " This does not mean, of course, that mistakenactions on their part should be
ignored."

  Again be fair in your judgement. Do those bent on dictatorial control suggest
that mistakes should not be ignored.? 
   There is no monolithic system around the Bahai world bent on crushing
people. There are folks everywhere with varying perceptins of what is important
about the Faith of Baha u llah.  We all have to face the struggle to engage the
standards of Baha u llah and not succumb to cynicism and despair when the
inevitable imperfections and "mistakes" appear. That is even more true when we
encounter the bonna fide jerks within the community. Baha u llah promised many
things in His redemptive message. He did not promise that jerks would not
become Bahais.  How do we respond to mistakes -- with magnanimity and with the
expectation that consultation must and will take place to address mistakes.
That consultation is a non adversarial communicative ethic that recognizes and
reciprocates the spiritual dignity and humanity, the likeness of God present in
each participant.  

   What message do *I* see in my recent situation?  I do not see evidence o fa
monolithic power structure. I see abundant evidence of people willing to work
to overcome divisns and heal hearts and minds. I see people watching my
response without my knowing it. Far from frivinga wedge between people , betwen
beleivers and governing bodes it apears my experience and my response are doing
something else. I know of three people who have enrolled as Bahai's because of
my experience. I know of at least a dozen more, previously unknown to me who
have been uninvolved or marginally involved in the community but who have come
out of the wood work and want to engage the spiritual struggle to transform
themsleves and offer hope and redemption to the world. That is the message of
my case. If it were in my power that is the message I would offer to you my
friends in your journey to the land of the Most Holy.

   warmest regards,
      Terry CulhaneFrom: David Fiorito and Jennifer Spotila <fiospots@pond.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Saturday, December 11, 1999 1:55 PM

So what is that opinion.  And please do not tell me to go look trough
endless stacks of posts on your site.  I want you to talk about this with
me.  I want to understand your opinion of me because you have no idea who I
am, or what my character is like, because you have never taken the time to
find out.

Take the time.  You may find that you and I have more in common than you
think.

Peace,

Dave

Patrick Henry wrote in message ...
>My opinion of fellow Bahais like you is well known.
>
>--
>Patrick Henry.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
>The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
>https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm
>
>
><dfiorito@my-deja.com> wrote in message news:82rdgo$735$1@nnrp1.deja.com...
>> (sorry if this is a repeat post MyDeja is acting funny)
>>
>> I never assume that anyone is a Covenant Breaker, and I do not look up
>> the membership of everyone on the list.
>>
>> Fred made a claim that he is a registered member of the Baha'i
>> community.  To lend this claim creedence he scanned his membership card
>> and posted it on his website.
>>
>> He is a controversial figure and makes many claims.  I sought to verify
>> the truth of his claim to membership in the US Baha'i Community.  That
>> membership could not be confirmed.
>>
>> This is not a value judgement - just a fact.  My opinion of Fred will
>> remain private.  I make no accusations or threats.  I merely researched
>> one of his claims and it turns out to be false.
>>
>> Peace,
>>
>> Dave
>>
>>
>> Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
>> Before you buy.
>
>

From: Kathy Pascoe <kathy@scconsult.com>
Subject: Re: Hooper Dunbar and Austin Powers
Date: Sunday, June 27, 1999 11:10 AM

On Sun, 27 Jun 1999 14:19:30 GMT, rreini@wwnet.net (Roger Reini) wrote:

> On Sun, 27 Jun 1999 06:44:49 -0400, "Patrick Henry"
> <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com> wrote:

> >Bahai fundamentalists regularly spy and report
> >on other Bahais. Rick Schaut is one of the official
> >hacks given such duties here on talk.religion.bahai.

> This is untrue.  There are no spies in the Baha'i Faith.

Um, Roger?  I have to agree with Fred (and Juan and Michael McKenny and
anyone else who's pointed this out).  If someone is forwarding your
email messages to someone else to check them out and determine if you're
straying from the path, there most certainly are spies in the faith.
-- 
Kathy Pascoe ~ kathy@scconsult.com (at home)
Confused about newsgroups?  Visit <news:news.newusers.questions>From: FG <FG@hotmail.com>
Subject: Re: quotations re soc.religion.bahai censorship
Date: Tuesday, April 27, 1999 8:06 AM

A clear and irrefutable disclosure that the BCCA
does indeed own and run soc.religion.bahai....

FG....The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm   On talk.religion.bahai,
alt.religion.bahai, and AOL: Keyword Bahai or Newsgroups

Boatright Family wrote in message <1104_925057592@rickboat>...
>As most of you know, Soc.Religion.Bahai is a moderated
>newsgroup.
>
>That means, that all posts to SRB go through a single gateway
>machine.  Unfortunately, that gateway has become unreliable of
>late, and the sponsors who provide ISP service to SRB are
>attempting to replace it with a newer computer.
>
>Until that happens, occasional service delays like the failing a
>couple of weeks ago may continue on SRB.
>
>We are really sorry, and if anyone has a pentium class computer
> in the 75 to 133 MHz range with 128 meg of ram that they
>would like to donate to BCCA please let me know.
>
>Rick Boatright
>co-moderator
>soc.religion.bahai
>

Boatright Family wrote in message <1103_925057137@rickboat>...
>Well, perhaps a word is in order from one of us.
>
>Seldom enough do any of the moderators of SRB choose to
>post.  In general, we have agreed amoung ourselves not to
>participate in the fray _IN_ srb, and generally, we try to stay out
>of the fray _OFF_ srb too.
>
>There are serious differences between what the various
>moderators will post, with myself clearly the most "liberal"
>amoung the group.
>
>However, we try to stay focused on the charter of the
>newsgroup, that is, SRB is chartered for discussion of the
>BELIEFS AND TEACHINGS OF THE BAHA'I FAITH.  Collateral
>discussions, about the administration of SRB, about the beliefs
>of individuals, personal histories of faith or of accusation, none
>of these has any place in that newsgroup.
>
>In addition, a few years back, the moderators faced a crisis of
>faith regarding those who promote a belief in an alternace
>succession of authority within the Baha'i Faith.  Long and heart
>breaking discussion about freedom of speech, the role of the
>internet, and our personal faith, led to the conclusion that
>Baha'u'llah's injunction to shun Covenant breakers means shun,
>and that we would not post messages by known cb's and would
>not post messages argueing in favor of an alternate succession
>of authority within the faith.  This was, and continues to be a
>horrid burdon.
>
>At this time, posts get rejected for several reasons.
>
>1) not about the beliefs and teachings of the Baha'i Faith
>2) arguementative, not polite, insulting, obnoxious, rude.  -- you
>may say anything you like about the other persons position, but
>you may say nothing about them.  the moderators INSIST on
>polite discourse
>3) the alternate authority arguement above
>4) signal to noise repetative multiple answer to the same
>quesiton.
>
>I know of no other reasons for rejection in the past year.
>
>The second is a _very_ subjective and individual decision.
>Each person on the hot seat has to choose for themselves
>where to draw that line.
>
>Anyone interested in applying for a position as a mod, is
>welcome to ask. It is a horrid, difficult, painful, hard, task.
>
>Rick Boatright
>co-moderator
>soc.religion.bahai
>

From: The142857 <the142857@aol.com>
Subject: Re: This Sect Has No Future (indeed)
Date: Friday, August 06, 1999 5:20 PM

Leo Tolstoy was bright indeed.  He saw
right through that charlaton right away.

God bless him for his ability to discern.

>Subject: This Sect Has No Future
>From: "Mesbah Javid" 11111174@3web.net 
>Date: Sat, 24 July 1999 02:23 PM EDT
>Message-id: <7nd27b$akv$1@iceman.tac.net>
>
>Stages of an Investigation of Truth by Leo Tolstoy:
>
>        'Sir, Thank you for sending me the book by
>Baha'u'llah. I regret that I am obliged to say that reading
>this book has completely put me off Baha'u'llah's teachings.
>This book merely contains insignificant and pretentious
>phrases which have no other purpose but to confirm the old
>superstitions which are completely devoid of any moral and
>religious content, in the true sense of that word.
>Nevertheless, I am very grateful for your letter and the
>book and please accept my warmest regards.'
>        [Leo Tolstoy to Hippolyte Dreyfus, 18 April 1904]
>
>
>        'Dear friend, I was very interested by Baha'ism, and
>I know all about it. I believe this sect has no future...'
>        [Leo Tolstoy to Ernest Crosby, 31 July 1904]
>
>
>        'Babism, which has evolved into Baha'ism
>(Baha'u'llah), and which has its roots in Islam, is one of
>the highest and purest of religious teachings. I will be
>very happy if you find my reply satisfying.'
>        [Leo Tolstoy to Fridul Khan Badalbekov, Dec. 1908]
>
>
>        'I very much regret not being able to set a great
>value on the ideas you sent me. There's absolutely no sense
>in it. Generally, the more I become acquainted with the
>Baha'i teachings the less I appreciate them, and that is why
>I hesitate to write a book on this subject.'
>        [Tolstoy to Mirza Ali-Akbar Nakhjavani, ~Dec. 1909]
>
>
>        'Thank you very much for your letter and the book (I
>haven't yet received the book). I am putting together a
>series of approachable little books, from the point of view
>of both price and contents, dealing with the most important
>religious doctrines in the world. I wish to compose a book
>about the Baha'is, which is why I am glad to have received
>documentation indispensable to this publication.'
>        [Tolstoy to Nakhjavini, ~Feb 1910]
>
>
>        'I know the Baha'i teachings, and I am in agreement
>with its basic principles, except for the belief in the
>infallibility of its founders and a few other details.'
>        [Tolstoy to A.A. Kasimov, ~April 1910]
>
>
>[Luigi Stendardo: LEO TOLSTOY AND THE BAHA'I FAITH;
>George Ronald, Oxford, 1985
>ISBN 0-85398-214-7 & 5]
>
>
>
>
>
>
>

From: <dfiorito@my-deja.com>
Subject: Re: loyal opposition in Baha'i
Date: Friday, December 17, 1999 2:02 PM

A very eloquent post indeed.

There is one thing about this whole topic that I find troubling.  It
may be the very same thing that troubled the UHJ when these issue first
surfaced a few years ago.

We in the west have _more_ freedom as citizens of our nation than we do
as members of any faitha nd we just can't seem to reconcile the two.
Every faith has laws and a structure that channels our behavior and
conduct.  It seems we value or legal rights over our religious
responsibilities.

We have free will.  We can choose to do whatever we want.  But in the
Baha'i Faith such freedom is not a part of God's Will.  Several places
in the Kitab-i-Aqdas such freedom is equated with the animal which we
are to rise above.

"Say: True liberty consisteth in man's submission unto My commandments,
little as ye know it. Were men to observe that which We have sent down
unto them from the Heaven of Revelation, they would, of a certainty,
attain unto perfect liberty."

-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p.63-64

An one of His commandments is:

"It is incumbent upon all to be obedient unto them [the House of
Justice]."

-- Bahá'u'lláh, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p.91

And from 'Abdul-Baha:

"All must consider themselves to be of the order of subjects,
submissive and obedient to the commandments of God and the laws of the
House of Justice."

-- `Abdu'l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of Abdul-Baha, p.68

In many places in the writings this obedience is extended to all
administrative bodies.  Does that mean that there are no channels for
dissenting views - no.  Consultation allows for dissent.  It is a place
for disagreement to be resolved.

Again we are confronted with the problem we face in the west.  Once a
decision has been made and the adminitration has spoken we, if we wish
to remain faithful to the Covenant of Baha'u'llah, must be obedient and
support the decision.  Not to take our grievance to a public forum
whether that is here on the Net or in some magazine.

If we do that, then how have we been obedient.  How have we followed
Baha'u'llah's definition of Liberty.

From the very begining of the Faith Baha'is who constantly, publicly,
and unwaveringly opposed the Faith were removed from the community.
Why should it be any different today when Baha'u'llah made it clear
that it was His Will to do so.

God asks us to do some very difficult things.  Being subbmisive and
obedient are two things that we in the west do not do well but we need
to do.

Peace,

Dave





Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.From: <dfiorito@my-deja.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Thursday, December 16, 1999 12:39 PM

For those who are interested in the mechanics.  I made a request to
membership services at national.  I provided them with Fred's name and
Baha'i ID# (made public by Fred on his website).  At first they said
they could not confirm his membership and it went no further.

I made a second inquiry for clarification and this is the email I
received:

>To:  Mr. David Fiorito
>
>Dear Baha'i Friend,
>
>In response to your inquiry about the status of Mr. Fredrick Glaysher,
the
>records of the Baha'i National Center reflect that Mr. Glaysher's name
was
>removed from the membership rolls in February 1999, and he is not
considered
>to be a member of the Baha'i Faith.
>
>With loving Baha'i greetings,
>
>***** * **********
>For the Office of the Secretary

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Before you buy.From: "Ron House" <house@usq.edu.au>
Subject: Re: Answering to Other Names (Re: Infallibility and Sniping the AO)
Date: Friday, April 07, 2000 12:20 AM

Adelard R wrote:

> >I wasn't aware your name was also Rick Schaut?! Although I have wondered
> >at times whether Rick was not but an evil twin of Pat

>  Gee!! your  posting  is very insulting .Nima,I am  sure you know that
> Insults are very cheap.
>  I feel you have an anger on you! why? If people don't share ideas or
> beliefs  like that of yours , live with it.

Nima _was_ living with it, until the US NSA spied on him after he ceased
to be involved with the faith, and informed on him to the Australian NSA
after he moved to this country. So now he's here giving out a serve of
medicine. What goes around comes around; that sort of miserable
dishonest behaviour breeds hostility. It's that simple.

>  Or try to have a constructive discussion without insults.insults can't
> change someone's heart, instead knowledge can succed it .

OK, you're big on hearts; try using your compassion to imagine what it
would feel like to discover that children were being warned off you
behind your back. What is happening here is pretty uncomfortable for the
Baha'i institutions, but they are just reaping the inevitable harvest of
their own actions. Cause and effect. Start behaving in accordance with
Baha'u'llah's teachings and the complaints will also stop. To see why,
just look at the contents of the criticisms. Except for bad behaviour of
the institutions, there are very few substantive complaints; the few
that exist could easily be discussed without problems if the ao hadn't
got heavy on the people who raised them.

-- 
Ron House            house@usq.edu.au

Never fear the truth.From: Mirele <mirele@xmission.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Membership Issues
Date: Saturday, December 25, 1999 6:04 PM

In article <83qqvl$ntn$1@nnrp1.deja.com>, dfiorito@my-deja.com says...
>
>I do not - CAN NOT - question your faith or your beliefs.  Nor do I
>wish to discredit your charges.  All I want to do is to clear up one
>fact.  Whether you know it or not, you are no longer considered a
>member of the Baha'i Community.  You may have a card but it is no
>longer valid.

My question to you, dfiorito, is:  How come YOU know and Fred Glaysher
apparently does not know?  As an outsider looking in, this appears to me to be
rather tacky behaviour at best, and at worst, it's inhumane.

>>
>> Despite their lies, I am a member of the Bahai faith. Again, my
>membership
>> ID card may be found on my website. And I have never heard otherwise
>> from a Bahai institution.
>
>
>This is no lie.  Any Baha'i who wishes to confirm what I learned can do
>so by sending Fred's name and Baha'i ID to National Membership services
>through www.usbnc.org and you can get the same information that I did.

WHY WASN'T FRED TOLD!?!?!?!

Frankly, this is appalling.  

I would address myself to those of you who call yourselves Baha'i.  This kind of
behaviour is NOT appropriate.  I have had dealings for five years now with the
Church <spit> of $cientology, and to be honest, I never thought I'd see the day
when the "officialdom" of the Baha'i Faith would rank up there with the
$cientology leadership.  In fact, I would argue that the Baha'i Faith
"officialdom" are worse than the $cientologists--because at least $cientology
lets people know that they've been "declared" (or kicked out of $cn).

What kind of fear motivates people to do such a thing (drop a person from the
rolls of the organization) and then NEGLECT to tell them?  This is truly
outrageous.

<snip>

>I still maintain that the points you make would be more credible if you
>admit you are no longer a Baha'i (in the registered sense), take a
>moment to reflect, and actually enter in to a dialogue about these
>issues.  Others have done this and seem to be gaining more credibility
>from civility than from fanaticism.

I think that it would be appropriate for whoever's in charge to explain why this
happened--but then again, from what I've read over the months and years on this
newsgroup and a.r.b, I don't expect that to happen.

Let me rent you a clue, Baha'is--your "leadership" reminds me of the
$cientologists.  This is not a characterization that any legitimate religious
group should aspire to.  I would meditate upon this...

Deana Holmes
mirele@xmission.com
From: <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
Subject: (bahai) Re: Marshall case
Date: Saturday, April 01, 2000 8:57 AM

In Baha'i Administration, pp. 63-64, Shoghi Effendi wrote:
"Let us also remember that at the very root of the Cause lies the principle
of the undoubted right of the individual to self-expression, his freedom to
declare his conscience and set forth his views."

In Unfolding Destiny, p. 423: 6 April 1928, Shoghi Effendi wrote:
"I feel that regarding such interpretations, no one has the right to impose
his view or opinion and require his listeners to believe in his particular
interpretation of the sacred and prophetic writings."

Including the uhj, a legislative institution....

--
FG
www.FG.com
The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience

From: Patrick Henry <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
Subject: --bahai-- Messages to uhj regarding their Technique
Date: Friday, December 17, 1999 7:05 AM

This file contains three messages: "to uhj 12-10-99," "to uhj 7-24-1998,"
and "The Baha'i Technique":

From: Patrick Henry <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
Subject: Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed
Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 8:33 AM

Given the uhj's oppressive tactics and violation of the human rights of
Linda and John Walbridge, Stephen Scholl, other editors of the
Dialogue magazine, the Bahai Encyclopedia editors who resigned in
protest, David Langness, Juan Cole, Michael McKenny, Nima Hazini,
former Assistant to the Auxiliary Board Paul Dodenhoff who resigned,
and so on, and so on, and so on.... All the victims documented on my
website.... I hesitate to put the uhj above any reprehensible act....
Including conspiracy to murder Dr. Daniel Jordan.

I have been a member of the Bahai faith since 1976. My ID Card
may be found on my website. I have never been contacted by the uhj
or any of its underlings to the contrary.

Anything I have ever said is a matter of the sanctity of my individual
God-given conscience that both Baha'u'llah and Abdul-Baha claimed
would never be violated in their religion.

I shall "cc" this message to the uhj so that they hear from me directly
on the matter.

I would consider it an honor to be one of its official victims; indeed,
the highest spiritual achievement of my Bahai life, defending Baha'u'llah's
Teachings from the fanaticism that has overwhelmed and hamstrung his
Revelation.

--
FG.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm

----------------------------------------------------------------------
(Confirmation of receipt by the uhj of the message above.)
From: Incoming Electronic Communication Operations <ieco@bwc.org>
Subject: Your Message Has Been Received...
Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 5:36 AM

Dear Friend,

This is an automated acknowledgement.

Your message regarding:

     Re: Fred's Baha'i Membership Could Not Confirmed

has been received at the Baha'i World Centre.
----------------------------------------------------------------------

From: Patrick Henry patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com
To: UHJ <secretariat@bwc.org>; Letters to Editor <letters@nytimes.com>;
bahai-faith @ makelist.com <bahai-faith@makelist.com>
Subject: To UHJ July 24, 1998
Date: Friday, July 24, 1998 9:03 PM
July 24,1998

Dear Members of the Universal House of Justice:

As a Bahai, I am saddened by the news of the execution of yet
another Bahai in Iran. However, the immediate public statements
made by Firuz Kazemzadeh of the National Spiritual Assembly
of the United States, reminiscent of Robert Henderson's piece in
The New York Times on January 13th of this year, appear equally
lamentable for their blatant hypocrisy: "We had hoped that President
Khatami's assertions about freedom, justice and the rule of law in Iran
would apply to the Baha'is of that country.... We urge the international
community to protest vigorously Mr. Rowhani's killing and to seek
justice for the beleaguered Iranian Baha'i community."

The tragic loss of Bahai lives in Iran and the subsequent exploitation
of their deaths by Bahai spokesmen, often in the American media,
always courting the President and other members of the government,
has become a predictable pattern rendered intolerable in the context
of continuing and pervasive Bahai censorship and denial of human
and civil rights in the United States and elsewhere.  Such incidents as
I queried you about in my unanswered email of March 31, 1997,
available on my Web site, regarding the crushing of the magazine
Dialogue, the resignations of a number of scholars from the Bahai
Encyclopedia, the attacks on the listserv known as Talisman I at
Indiana University, the harassing and blacklisting of many individuals,
Bahai and non-Bahai, suggest profoundly deep-seated problems within
the Bahai community and administration.
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/To-UHJ1.htm

To these incidents must now be added the apparent conspiracy for more
than a year and a half of the Bahai Computer and Communications
Committee (BCCA), under the chairmanship of Mark Towfiq, to defeat
twice now, along with the collusion of other Bahais, the creation of an
unmoderated newsgroup on the Bahai Faith which would be known as
talk.religion.bahai. You may find extensive documentation for all of
these violations of the basic human rights of many Bahais and
non-Bahais on my Web site, "The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom
of Conscience": https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm

Because the third interest poll for talk.religion.bahai on Usenet is
approaching, after August 28th, I ask you again to investigate the
BCCA and its depriving me of access last November from all private
Bahai-only mailing lists at a crucial moment just when the tide of
discussion was going very much in favor of the newsgroup, noted by
many observers. I also ask whether you supported or were involved in
that decision? The relevant files can be found on my Web site under
Bahai-Discuss Archives.
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/archive.htm

Similarly, I would like to know whether your institution or the BCCA has
approved of or advocated the recent ban of my email signature file by
the moderators of soc.religion.bahai, as well as their complete ban for
more than a year and a half now on all discussion regarding
talk.religion.bahai.

The prevailing atmosphere of suppression of free speech and
religious conscience that now characterizes the Bahai Faith cannot
but call into question the honesty of many members of the Bahai
administration and perhaps the institutions themselves.

I ask once more whether censorship is allowed in the Bahai Faith and
what passages of the Bahai Writings support it, what are the "rules," if
you will, of Bahai censorship?

--
Patrick Henry.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm

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

THE Baha'i Technique:

During the last several years or more a number of observers have noted
the common methods many Bahais use to avoid various issues or
discredit people who hold opinions other than their own:

May 12, 1992:
"The Baha'i Faith has become very oppressive and manipulative of
the individual.  That to me is merely a statement of fact, as I
have experienced it, for nearly sixteen years now [over 22].  The usual
stratagem in dealing with anyone who would express his conscience
in good faith is to pretend the Cause is above any kind of
criticism whatsoever while intimating that anyone who would speak
honestly must have something wrong with him, i.e., his spiritual
life isn't what it should be, he doesn't understand the nature of
unity, or he's accused of trying to obtain power for himself,
which at times seems merely a calculated way of discrediting the
person, and so on.  Another common strategy used to acquire
control over the individual is to humor the person by letting him
pour himself out, etc., and then self-righteously giving him the
Truth."

Ron House, November 14, 1997:
"I know what you mean. I've found over the years that
there is a technique used by traditional Baha'is and
others to squash dissension: harry the dissenter so
much he says something intemperate, then point out
how 'loving' and 'compassionate' they are and how
nasty the dissenter is. The trouble is that this
technique works, so I've been making a conscious
effort not to fall for it. Also, when they get the
dissenter discouraged and miserable enough, he
invariably makes a slip-up sooner or later that they
can REALLY let loose the venom over. IMHO, they did
this to you when you misread Sharon's intentions.
At any other time, they would overlook faults, as
Baha'u'llah says, but when they're in this mode
they go for the jugular. Very sad."
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/House2.htm

June 1998:
"Some of the most striking methods demonstrated repeatedly by
many Bahais during the last year and a half of discussion about
an unmoderated newsgroup is their refusal to listen and respond to
the criticisms of those who are in favor of talk.religion.bahai,
ignoring their concerns, never responding analytically to their
messages and reasoning and logic and evidence, attacking them
through character assassination and ad hominem, ganging up
on individuals, and "circling the wagons" around every action
of the srb moderators or others who are opposed to
talk.religion.bahai."
"More than twenty different people on my web site have posted messages
explaining their experience with srb censorship yet many srb Bahais
NEVER address their concerns. Ignoring such charges will not make
them go away.  NO ONE has to "try" to link the trb interest poll with
censorship on srb; the moderators themselves have done that by
suppressing droves of people for years. There are many people who
believe such suppression is part and parcel of the Bahai
community as it exists today. A YES vote need not necessarily
support such a belief. There are other reasons Bahais might vote
YES."

Fran Baker, May 1998:
"Just have to say that in my experience this is a common
technique of manipulative people in general; it is especially
effective with thoughtful people who are willing to see both
sides of things, i.e., their own fault. I consider this brow-beating
technique to be a form of abuse. The only way to deal with it is
to call them on it every time and to refuse to let yourself be beat
up, i.e., not to do your part of the "tango." This can be very hard
to do, but it works.You can break this pattern in a personal
relationship. I don't know whether it's possible when a group
acts this way. Very scary."

Dr. Juan Cole, June 12, 1998:
"Let me ask you why in the world you think that I would risk my
professional reputation by publicly stating falsehoods?  ...The very
technique of the more glaze-eyed among these people is to
unbearably bully a Baha'i whom they don't like, use unjustified
threats of declaring him or her a CB to silence the individual, and
if the person will not be silenced, then to depend upon the gullibility
of the Baha'is in refusing to listen to any victim's story because, of
course, the Baha'i institutions are infallible and divinely guided and
could never do anything wrong.  It is a perfect racket."
"Of course, this technique of making liberals go away has been
enormously successful, and ex-Baha'i liberals have no credibility
with the remaining Baha'is nor do most of them have any energy
to continue to make a case, either to the Baha'is or the outside
world, for the incredible abuses that go on inside this organization
ostensibly committed to tolerance!"
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Cole10.htm

K. Paul Johnson, September 15, 1998:
"If that principle [people are innocent until proven guilty]
were followed by Baha'i administration and individuals in
their condemnations of their fellow believers, I
would have very little to complain about regarding Baha'i
affairs.  But character assassination by innuendo is the
preferred way of dealing with anything remotely resembling
dissidence.  Seems like that's exactly what you're doing to Juan
Cole in your message.  Saying I don't want to know what you've
"got" on him, thus attacking me but insinuating you have some
awful proof of unspecified guilt on his part.  If that's not
character assassination by innuendo, what is?"
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Johnson18.htm

Gibro28W, October 12, 1998:
"In summary, the biggest problem, as I see it,
is that most Baha'is don't take criticism seriously--they tune it out as
"negative" or "harmful to spiritual growth." This selfish
attitude is very stupid. First of all, Baha'is entice people to join
them. When they do, they indoctrinate them until they think like the
group. But as soon as a red flare of doubt goes up in the convert's
mind, they're cordoned off by the group and reminded of their
"spiritual" obligations in the name of Baha'u'llah or the "Covenant."
If left unresolved and doubt gives vent to prolonged criticism, the
convert is sent packing or is kicked out. What we have here is a
broken family that had failed to truly listen to the needs
of its members in the first place."
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/srb73.htm

Barthaman on September 14, 1998:
"Baha'i dissenters, more or less, are wounded souls abandoned
by their fathers,so-to-speak. They have been cast out and
dismissed or shunned without having had a fair hearing. Consider
their pain when the rest of their "family" dismisses them too.
Can you know what it's like to be accused of heresy and shunned
following a sincere intellectual conflict (inspired by doubt)--
after you've sacrificed years in devoted service to your religion?
Can you comprehend their sense of betrayal and injustice? This is
why disillusioned believers leave their religions each year--while
some still hang around, banging on the door now and then, demanding
a refund for their lost youth. In time they will have to move on,
however, writing the Baha'i Faith off as another lesson in fraud.
Mock these people all you want--but for the grace of God, the next
dissenter could be you. Don't be too confident, my friend."
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/srb66.htm

Juan Cole wrote, February 23, 1999:
"There is nothing to be puzzled by.  Right wing Baha'is only like to
hear the sound of their own voices (which are the only voices they
will admit to being "Baha'i" at all)."

"Obviously, the world is so constructed that they cannot in fact only
hear their own voices.  They are forced to hear other voices that
differ from theirs.  This most disturbs them when the voices come from
enrolled Baha'is or when the voices speak of the Baha'i faith."

"The way they sometimes deal with the enrolled Baha'is is to summon them
to a heresy inquiry and threaten them with being shunned if they do not
fall silent."

"With non-Baha'is or with ex-Baha'is, they deal with their speech about
the faith by backbiting, slandering and libelling the speaker.  You will
note that since I've been on this list I have been accused of long-term
heresy, of "claiming authority," of out and out lying (though that was
retracted, twice), of misrepresentation, of 'playing fast and loose
with the facts,'and even of being 'delusional.'  I have been accused of
all these falsehoods by *Baha'is*, by prominent Baha'is.  I have been
backbitten by them."

"This shows that all the talk about the danger a sharp tongue can do,
all the talk about the need for harmony, for returning poison with
honey, for a sin-covering eye, is just *talk* among right wing
Baha'is.  No one fights dirtier than they when they discover a voice
they cannot silence and cannot refute."

"Paul Johnson has seen all these things, as well, for the past five
years. He can explain it to you."

Cf. K. Paul Johnson's general reflections on coercive techniques
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Johnson21.htm

And LaAeterna's method of silencing opponents
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/srb65.htm

Comments on the related techniques of Susan Maneck:

Juan Cole, February 13, 1999:
"It is a very, very, very weird religion.  And if anyone is reading
Susan Maneck's absolutely bone-chilling screeds on the
desirability of Heresy Trials and carefulness in Shunning,
they are seeing what it is like at the core of the religion."

"I really am sorry for them and her, since they seem sort of filled with
hate and quite paranoid, yet say they are preaching love, unity and
tolerance. Susan will say, 'may your abdomen be split by lightning
and your guts fall out you filthy heretic whom I wish I could just have
shunned and buried', and then she'll sign herself  "warmest"  and
slander a university by adding it to her sig line.  As if what she is
about has anything at all to do with *universities*!"

February 15, 1999:
"Ms. Maneck's approach appears to me to be always to
shunt the discussion off or back to who said what where when
why how and so on.... The farther back in time the better, since
the person's memory, being human, is bound to be unable to
keep up or to have stocked the evidence needed on his or her
hard drive or find it on dejanews.com. And it then allows her
to claim pretty much anything she wants to while seeming to
have discredited her opponent. Further, she relies on the
tactics of demagoguery knowing they usually prevail and will be
supported by other fundamentalist Bahais. By shrieking
"slander" and referring to others' opinions as "garbage," she is
able to create an emotional atmosphere that essentially negates
whatever the topic or content might be and that allows her to
appear to win what is often a narrowly legalistic point or
interpretation."

"All of this is done, of course, in conjunction with her employing
the more common Baha'i Techniques of intimidation and
psychological demonization and terrorism."

Maneck's scholarly reference to others' opinions as garbage:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Maneck3.htm

Maneck's scholarly reference to others' opinions as litter:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Maneck7.htm

https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Maneck1.htm

This document at
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/technique.htm

See The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm

Professor Juan Cole, of the University of Michigan,
discusses related issues in his journal article "The
Baha'i Faith in America as Panopticon, 1963-1997":

https://www-personal.umich.edu/~jrcole/bahai/1999/jssr/bhjssr.htm

Also see:

Full Text of UHJ's Letter of April 7, 1999
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/UHJLetterApril71999.htm

Juan Cole, "Commentary" on UHJ's "outburst of vehement ignorance"
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/Outburst.htm

Letter of Resignation from Paul Dodenhoff, Assistant to the Auxiliary
Board
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/LetterResignationPD.htm

--
Patrick Henry.... "Give me liberty or give me death!"
The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/bahai.htm








From: Juan Cole <jricole@my-deja.com>
Subject: Trans. of Baha'u'llah's "Praised be My Lord, the Most High
Date: Saturday, July 10, 1999 3:12 AM

trans. J Cole  7-4-99

                                        Baha'u'llah

                        Praised be My Lord, the Most High

Letter of eternity, put on the bridal trousseau of detachment and walk
                                upon the exalted brocade runner;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
This is the earth of immortality, upon which trod the foot of one of the
                                                           saints;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
Do not let the comings and goings of this world sadden you, then ascend
                                          to the realm of faithfulness;
                praised by my Lord, the most high.
You have a place with me in the most glorious pavilions-
                praised be the one who created and made-
Wherein you shall hear the melodies of paradise above the farthest
                                                  lote-tree-
                praised be my Lord, the most high-
And shall drink therein red wine from the beauty of God, the most
                                             radiant-
                praised be the one who created and made-
And find therein a cornucopia of the fruits of sanctity-
                praised be my Lord, the most high-
And shall fly to every corner thereof on sapphire wings, in the kingdoms
                                                      of the spirit-
                praised be the one who created and made-
And shall give voice therein with every tune to the songs of
                                          immortality-
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
You shall be attracted by the glances of loveliness in resplendent
                                                   chambers;
                praised be the one who created and made.
Behold, you shall discover within yourself the lights of guidance and
                          immerse yourself in the great fathomless sea-
                praised be my Lord, the most high_
And shall be nourished by the fruits of the spirit from the farthest
                                                          tree-
                praised by the one who created and made-
And shall hear the call of God in the audible melody issuing from
                                                     silence;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
Say:  The houri of immortality descended once more to accept this
                                            beautiful, glittering moon;
                praised be the one who created and made;
She grasped the crimson tumbler in her right hand-
                praised be my Lord, the most high-
In order to pour for whoever accepts this delight in that garden of good
                                                             pleasure;
                praised be the one who created and made.
She raised her right hand and leaned on her left leg-
                praised be my Lord, the most high-
Then her arched eyebrow appeared, like a keen scimitar, and she slashed
                                        with it at hearts and insides;
                praised be the one who created and made.
She shrugged her shoulders, uncovering ebony tresses beneath her white
                                      veil, coiled like a blacksnake;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
Behold, it swallowed up everyone, from those in the heavens to those
                                                 beneath the earth-
                praised be the one who created and made-
And returned being to nothingness;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
At one time she revealed her face, and at another she concealed it;
                praised be the one who created and made.
Behold, she uncovered the creation of the spirits and returned the
                                     decree to its realization;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
Then after that she covered the faces once more lest eternity be
                                    annihilated by that crimson scene;
                praised be the one who created and made.
Then she lifted the hem of her black veil from her radiant brow,
                        revealing the brilliance of the new;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
She said, "Am I not the beauty of the beloved in the midst of the
forenoon sky?"  And, behold, the visage of grandeur cried out with the
            lips of the beauty of being, saying, "Yes,and again, yes!"
                praised be the one who created and made.
See, the essences of spirit dance in the temples of immortality at
                                       having secretly appeared;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
The hearts of the sincere are attracted by her luminous rays;
                praised be the one who created and made.
The minds of the holy ones are distracted at how she descends and
                                                   ascends;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
Behold, the crier called out in the midst of the air at the center of
                                                       appearance;
                praised be the one who created and made.
She said, "By the Lord of the heavens!  A glance at her is better than
                                  possessing this world and the next."
                Praised be my Lord, the most high.
Then she rose, and the most great resurrection took place;
                praised be the one who created and made.
She seated herself, and the hearts of the insightful quaked;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
Thereafter she brought from behind her hair a tablet of green
                                            chrysolite;
                praised be the one who created and made.
She read out one letter from among the tablet's lofty symbols and
            behold, the spirits issued from the temple of names;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
Then she pointed with her middle finger and all the religions from Adam
                                             to Jesus were annihilated;
                praised be the one who created and made.
She moved, after that, time and again, and behold, the sun split in the
                                                  heavens of command;
                praised be the one who created and made.
She bared her head and a ringlet of hair dangled on her breast;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
The voice of God was manifest in the strands of her hair, making mention
                              of her Lord, the exalted, the most high;
                praised be the one who created and made.
Behold, the sign of night appeared from her dusky locks and the sign of
                                             day from her white brow;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
She voiced thereby the call of holiness in the paradise of presence;
                praised be the one who created and made.
She said, "You shall be subjected to temptations, companions of virtue;"
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
"You shall be denied access to the shrine of beauty in the Ka`bah of
                                                        knowability;"
                praised be the one who created and made.
That was inscribed on the tablet of immortality by the most high pen;
                praised be my Lord, the most high.
Therein is wisdom from the mysteries that you neither see nor witness;
                praised be the one who created and made.

Source: Baha'u'llah in  A. Ishraq-Khavari, Ganj-i Shayigan, pp. 61-64

--
Juan Cole, History, U of Michigan jrcole@umich.edu
https://www-personal.umich.edu/~jrcole/bahai.htm
Buy *Modernity & Millennium: Genesis of Baha'i*
https://www.kalimat.com/

Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Share what you know. Learn what you don't.From: McKenny Michael <bn872@FreeNet.Carleton.CA>
Subject: Repost of UHJ Letter
Date: Tuesday, February 16, 1999 2:24 PM

Greetings, Frederick.
    Here, as you request, is the little gem Susan first posted:
                                                    Fare very Well,
                                                        Michael

8 February 1998              

Transmitted by email

Dr. Susan Stiles Maneck
U.S.A.

Dear Baha'i Friend,

    The Universal House of Justice received your emails of 21 September and 17
November 1997 and much regrets the delay in responding. It has instructed us to
send you the following comments which it trusts will be helpful to you in your
endeavour to understand various points made previously to yourself and other
friends.

    Your email of 21 September covers a number of issues, the first of which
relates to methods followed in researching, understanding and writing about
historical events, and the elements of these methods which the House of Justice
regards as being influenced by materialism. The purpose of scholarship in such
fields should obviously be the ascertainment of truth, and Baha'i scholars
should, of course, observe the highest standards of honesty,
integrity and truthfulness. Moreover, the House of Justice accepts that many
scholarly methods have been developed which are soundly based and of enduring
validity. It nevertheless questions some presumptions of certain current
academic methods because it sees these producing a distorted picture of
reality.

    The training of some scholars in fields such as religion and history seems
to have restricted their vision and blinded them to the culturally determined
basis of elements of the approach they have learned. It causes them to exclude
from consideration factors which, from a Baha'i point of view, are of
fundamental importance. Truth in such fields cannot be found if the evidence of
Revelation is systematically excluded and if discourse is limited by
a basically deterministic view of the world.

    Some of the protagonists in the discussions on the Internet have implied
that the only way to attain a true understanding of historical events and of
the purport of the sacred and historical records of the Cause of God is through
the rigid application of methods narrowly defined in a materialistic framework.
They have even gone so far as to stigmatize whoever proposes a variation of
these methods as wishing to obscure the truth rather than unveil
it.

    The House of Justice recognizes that, at the other extreme, there are
Baha'is who, imbued by what they conceive to be loyalty to Baha'u'llah, cling
to blind acceptance of what they understand to be a statement of the Sacred
Text. This shortcoming demonstrates an equally serious failure to grasp the
profundity of the Baha'i principle of the harmony of faith and reason. The
danger of such an attitude is that it exalts personal understanding of some
part of the Revelation over the whole, leads to illogical and internally

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------
Dr. Susan Stiles Maneck
U.S.A.  8 February 1998
Page 2 

inconsistent applications of the Sacred Text, and provides fuel to those who
would mistakenly characterize loyalty to the Covenant as "fundamentalism".

    It is not surprising that individual Baha'is hold and express different and
sometimes defective understandings of the Teachings; this is but an evidence of
the magnitude of the change that this Revelation is to effect in human
consciousness. As believers with various insights into the Teachings converse
-- with patience, tolerance and open and unbiased minds -- a deepening of
comprehension should take place. The strident insistence on individual
views, however, can lead to contention, which is detrimental not only to the
spirit of Baha'i association and collaboration but to the search for truth
itself.

    Beyond contention, moreover, is the condition in which a person is so
immovably attached to one erroneous viewpoint that his insistence upon it
amounts to an effort to change the essential character of the Faith. This kind
of behaviour, if permitted to continue unchecked, could produce disruption in
the Baha'i community, giving birth to countless sects as it has done in
previous Dispensations. The Covenant of Baha'u'llah prevents this. The Faith
defines elements of a code of conduct, and it is ultimately the responsibility
of the Universal House of Justice, in watching over the security of the Cause
and upholding the integrity of its Teachings, to require the friends to adhere
to standards thus defined.

    The Universal House of Justice does not see itself obliged to prescribe a
new scientific methodology for Baha'i academics who make study of the Faith,
its teachings and history the subject of their professional activities. Rather
has it concentrated on drawing the attention of these friends to the inadequacy
of certain approaches from a Baha'i point of view, urging them to apply to
their work the concept which they accept as Baha'is: that the
Manifestation of God is of a higher realm and has a perception far above that
of any human being. He has the task of raising humankind to a new level of
knowledge and behaviour. In this, His understanding transcends the traditions
and concepts of the society in which He appears. As Baha'u'llah Himself writes
in the Hidden Words:

    O Son of Beauty! By My spirit and by My favor! By My mercy and by My
beauty! All that I have revealed unto thee with the tongue of power, and have
written for thee with the pen of might, hath been in accordance with thy
capacity and understanding, not with My state and the melody of My voice.

Although, in conveying His Revelation, the Manifestation uses the language and
culture of the country into which He is born, He is not confined to using
terminology with the same connotations as those given to it by His predecessors
or contemporaries; He delivers His message in a form which His audience, both
immediate and in centuries to come, is capable of grasping. It is for Baha'i
scholars to elaborate, over a period of time, methodologies which
will enable them to perform their work with this understanding. This is a
challenging task, but not one which should be beyond the scope of Baha'is who
are learned in the Teachings as well as competent in their scientific
disciplines.
This brings us to the specific points raised in your email of 17 November 1997.
As you well understand, not only the right but also the responsibility

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------
Dr. Susan Stiles Maneck
U.S.A.  8 February 1998
Page 3 

of each believer to explore truth for himself or herself are fundamental to the
Baha'i teachings. This principle is an integral feature of the coming of age of
humankind, inseparable from the social transformation to which Baha'u'llah is
calling the peoples of the world. It is as relevant to specifically scholarly
activity as it is to the rest of spiritual and intellectual life. Every human
being is ultimately responsible to God for the use which he
or she makes of these possibilities; conscience is never to be coerced, whether
by other individuals or institutions.

    Conscience, however, is not an unchangeable absolute. One dictionary
definition, although not covering all the usages of the term, presents the
common understanding of the word "conscience" as "the sense of right and wrong
as regards things for which one is responsible; the faculty or principle which
pronounces upon the moral quality of one's actions or motives, approving the
right and condemning the wrong".

    The functioning of one's conscience, then, depends upon one's understanding
of right and wrong; the conscience of one person may be established upon a
disinterested striving after truth and justice, while that of another may rest
on an unthinking predisposition to act in accordance with that pattern of
standards, principles and prohibitions which is a product of his social
environment. Conscience, therefore, can serve either as a bulwark of an
upright character or can represent an accumulation of prejudices learned from
one's forebears or absorbed from a limited social code.

    A Baha'i recognizes that one aspect of his spiritual and intellectual
growth is to foster the development of his conscience in the light of divine
Revelation -- a Revelation which, in addition to providing a wealth of
spiritual and ethical principles, exhorts man "to free himself from idle fancy
and imitation, discern with the eye of oneness His glorious handiwork, and look
into all things with a searching eye". This process of development,
therefore, involves a clear-sighted examination of the conditions of the world
with both heart and mind. A Baha'i will understand that an upright life is
based upon observance of certain principles which stem from Divine Revelation
and which he recognizes as essential for the well-being of both the individual
and society. In order to uphold such principles, he knows that, in certain
cases, the voluntary submission of the promptings of his own
personal conscience to the decision of the majority is a conscientious
requirement, as in wholeheartedly accepting the majority decision of an
Assembly at the outcome of consultation.

    In the discussion of wisdom in your email of 21 September 1997, you observe
that maybe "Baha'i academics all too often have not recognized that to a great
extent failure to exercise wisdom represents a failure of love." The House of
Justice agrees that the exercise of wisdom calls for a measure of love and the
development of a sensitive conscience. These, in turn, involve not only
devotion to a high standard of uprightness, but also consideration
of the effects of one's words and actions.

    A Baha'i's duty to pursue an unfettered search after truth should lead him
to understand the Teachings as an organic, logically coherent whole, should
cause him to examine his own ideas and motives, and should enable him to see

--------------------------------------------------------------------------
------
Dr. Susan Stiles Maneck
U.S.A.  8 February 1998
Page 4 

that adherence to the Covenant, to which he is a party, is not blind imitation
but conscious choice, freely made and freely followed.

    In many of His utterances, `Abdul-Baha extols governments which uphold
freedom of conscience for their citizens. As can be seen from the context,
these statements refer to the freedom to follow the religion of one's choice.
In the original of a passage to which you refer in your email of 17 November
1997, He gives the following analysis of freedom.

    There are three types of freedom. The first is divine freedom, which is one
of the inherent attributes of the Creator for He is unconstrained in His will,
and no one can force Him to change His decree in any matter whatsoever....
    The second is the political freedom of Europeans, which leaves the
individual free to do whatsoever he desires as long as his action does not harm
his neighbour. This is natural freedom, and its greatest expression is seen in
the animal world. Observe these birds and notice with what freedom they live.
However much man may try, he can never be as free as an animal, because the
existence of order acts as an impediment to freedom.

    The third freedom is that which is born of obedience to the laws and
ordinances of the Almighty. This is the freedom of the human world, where man
severs his affections from all things. When he does so, he becomes immune to
all hardship and sorrow. Wealth or material power will not deflect him from
moderation and fairness, neither will poverty or need inhibit him from showing
forth happiness and tranquillity. The more the conscience of man
develops, the more will his heart be free and his soul attain unto happiness.
In the religion of God, there is freedom of thought because God, alone,
controls the human conscience, but this freedom should not go beyond courtesy.
In the religion of God, there is no freedom of action outside the law of God.
Man may not transgress this law, even though no harm is inflicted on one's
neighbour. This is because the purpose of Divine law is the education of
all -- others as well as oneself -- and, in the sight of God, the harm done to
one individual or to his neighbour is the same and is reprehensible in both
cases. Hearts must possess the fear of God. Man should endeavour to avoid that
which is abhorrent unto God. Therefore, the freedom that the laws of Europe
offer to the individual does not exist in the law of God. Freedom of thought
should not transgress the bounds of courtesy, and actions,
likewise, should be governed by the fear of God and the desire to seek His good
pleasure.

    Education of the individual Baha'i in the Divine law is one of the duties
of Spiritual Assemblies. In a letter to a National Assembly on 1 March 1951,
Shoghi Effendi wrote:

    The deepening and enrichment of the spiritual life of the individual
believer, his increasing comprehension of the essential verities

--------------------------------------------------------------------------
------
Dr. Susan Stiles Maneck
U.S.A.  8 February 1998
Page 5 

    underlying this Faith, his training in its administrative processes, his
understanding of the fundamentals of the Covenants established by its Author
and the authorized Interpreter of its teachings, should be made the supreme
objectives of the national representatives responsible for the edification, the
progress and consolidation of these communities.

    Such is the duty resting on the elected institutions of the Faith for the
promotion of the spiritual, moral and ethical lives of the individual
believers. Parallel with this, the Baha'i Faith upholds the freedom of
conscience which permits a person to follow his chosen religion: no one may be
compelled to become a Baha'i, or to remain a Baha'i if he conscientiously
wishes to leave the Faith. As to the thoughts of the Baha'is themselves -- that
is
those who have chosen to follow the religion of Baha'u'llah -- the institutions
do not busy themselves with what individual believers think unless those
thoughts become expressed in actions which are inimical to the basic principles
and vital interests of the Faith.
    With regard to the accusation that to make such distinctions borders on
restriction of the freedom of speech, one should accept that civil society has
long recognized that utterance can metamorphose into behaviour, and has taken
steps to protect itself and its citizens against such behaviour when it becomes
socially destructive. Laws against sedition and hate-mongering are examples
that come readily to mind.

    It will surely be clear to you from the above comments that the categories
of "issues of doctrinal heresy which must therefore be suppressed" and "the
imposition of orthodoxy on the Baha'i community", to which you refer, are
concepts essentially drawn from the study of Christianity and are inapplicable
to the far more complex interrelationships and principles established by the
Baha'i Faith.

    It is important for all those Baha'is who are engaged in the academic study
of the Baha'i Faith to address the theoretical problems which undoubtedly
exist, while refusing to be distracted by insidious and unscholarly attacks and
calumnies which may periodically be injected into their discussions by the
ill-intentioned. Discussion with those who sincerely raise problematic issues,
whether they be Baha'is or not, and whether -- if the latter --
they disagree with Baha'i teachings, can be beneficial and enlightening.
However, to continue dialogue with those who have shown a fixed antagonism to
the Faith, and have demonstrated their imperviousness to any ideas other than
their own, is usually fruitless and, for the Baha'is who take part, can be
burdensome and even spiritually corrosive.

    The problem which aroused the concern of the House of Justice, and has been
the subject of a number of communications, was the systematic corruption of
Baha'i discourse in certain of the Internet discussion groups, a design which
became increasingly apparent to many of the Baha'i participants and whose first
victim, if it were to succeed, would be Baha'i scholarship itself. The element
which exacerbated a dispute which had been simmering during
the past two decades and erupted on the Internet was the participation of some
persons who, while nominally Baha'is, cherished their own programs and designed
to make use of the Baha'i Cause for the advancement of these programs. To this
end they strove to change the essential characteristics of that Cause. This

--------------------------------------------------------------------------
------
Dr. Susan Stiles Maneck
U.S.A.  8 February 1998
Page 6 

behaviour has been abundantly confirmed by statements made and actions taken by
certain of the involved individuals since they withdrew from the Baha'i
community. They sought to use the language, the occasions and the credibility
of scholarly activity to lend a counterfeit authority to a private enterprise
which was essentially ideological in nature and self-motivated in origin. Even
if their original aims were idealistic in nature -- no matter how
ill-informed and erroneous in concept -- they had evolved in practice into an
assault on the Covenant which Baha'u'llah has created as a stronghold within
which His Cause would evolve as He intends. The purpose of some of those
responsible would seem to be that, by diminishing the station of Baha'u'llah --
a disservice done to previous Manifestations by people similarly inclined --,
by casting doubt on the authority conferred on `Abdul-Baha, the
Guardian and the Universal House of Justice, and by calling into question the
integrity of Baha'i administrative processes, they would be able to persuade a
number of unwary followers that the Baha'i Faith is in fact not a Divine
Revelation but a kind of socio-political system being manipulated by ambitious
individuals.

    Your own familiarity with these same persons' behaviour will have provided
you with ample illustration of the violence being done by their public and
private statements to Baha'u'llah's teachings, which they profess to honour,
and to the cause of scholarship, which they profess to serve. We cannot
separate method from spirit and character. In The Secret of Divine
Civilization, `Abdul-Baha gives the standard for the "spiritually learned"
whom He
describes as "skilled physicians for the ailing body of the world" and "the
sure antidote to the poison that has corrupted human society":

    For every thing, however, God has created a sign and symbol, and
established standards and tests by which it may be known. The spiritually
learned must be characterized by both inward and outward perfections; they must
possess a good character, an enlightened nature, a pure intent, as well as
intellectual power, brilliance and discernment, intuition, discretion and
foresight, temperance, reverence, and a heartfelt fear of God. For an unlit
candle, however great in diameter and tall, is no better than a barren palm
tree or a pile of dead wood.

    We trust that these comments will help you to see the implications of the
points conveyed in the emailed letter of 20 July 1997. The House of Justice
asks us to assure you of its continuing prayers on your behalf.

With loving Baha'i greetings,
Department of the Secretariat

Susan Stiles Maneck
History, Stetson University
--
"My name's McKenny, Mike McKenny, Warrant Officer, Solar Guard."
       (Tom Corbett #1 STAND BY FOR MARS p2)
 From: Catherine Woodgold <an588@FreeNet.Carleton.CA>
Subject: UHJ reply to Service of Women paper
Date: Tuesday, February 16, 1999 5:23 PM

The following can be found on
https://bahai-library.org/uhj/women.uhj.html

WOMEN AND THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

Universal House of Justice to the National Spiritual Assembly of New Zealand

May 31, 1988

      We have been informed of a paper, presented at a recent New Zealand
Baha'i Studies conference, which raises the possibility that the
ineligibility of women for membership on the Universal House of Justice may
be a temporary provision subject to change through a process of progressive
unfoldment of the divine purpose. We present the following points as a means
of increasing the friends' understanding of this established provision of
the Order of Baha'u'llah that membership of the Universal House of Justice
is confined to men.

      The system of Baha'i Administration is "indissolubly bound with the
essential verities of the Faith" as set forth in the writings of Baha'u'llah
and Abdul' Baha. A unique feature of this system is the appointment of
authorized interpreters, in the persons of Abdu'l Baha and the Guardian, to
provide authoritative statements on the intent of Baha'u'llah's revelation.
Writing in The Dispensation of Baha'u'llah, Shogi Effendi stated that
"Abdul' Baha and the Guardian " share . . . the right and obligation to
interpret the Baha'i Teachings". In relation to his own function as
interpreter, he further stated that "the Guardian has been specifically
endowed with such power as he may need to reveal the purport and disclose
the implications of the utterances of Baha'u'llah and of Abdu'l Baha". The
significance of this important provision is that the religion of God is
safeguarded and protected against schism and its essential unity is
preserved.

      The function of the divinely appointed interpreters is evident in the
progressive disclosure and clarification of the details of the Baha'i
teachings concerning the membership of the Universal House of Justice.
Baha'u'llah, in his writings, ordained both the Universal House of Justice
and Local Houses of Justice. However, in many of his laws he refers simply
to "the House of Justice" and its members as "Men of Justice", leaving open
for later clarification to which level or levels of the whole institution
each law would apply. Abdu'l Baha, the Center of Baha'u'llah's covenant and
the unerring interpreter of his word, not only provided for the
establishment of National Spiritual Assemblies, to be designated at some
future time as Secondary Houses of Justice, but He also outlined the means
by which the Universal House of Justice was to be elected. In His will and
testament, the Master wrote:

     "And now, concerning the House of Justice which God hath ordained
     as the source of all good and freed from all error, it must be
     elected by universal suffrage, that is, by the believers . . . By
     this House is meant the Universal House of Justice, that is, in
     all countries a secondary House of Justice must be instituted and
     these secondary Houses of Justice must elect the members of the
     Universal one . . . (p. 14)

      And in one of His Tablets He had already written:

     At whatever time the beloved of God in each country appoint their
     delegates , and these in turn elect their representatives, and
     these representatives elect a body, that body shall be regarded as
     the Supreme House of Justice.<

>

      In the following passage, 'Abdu'l Baha refered to membership on the
"House of Justice" being restricted to men, without a specific designation
of the level or levels of the institution to which this provision applied:

     "The House of Justice, however, according to the explicit text of
     the Law of God, is confined to men; this for a wisdom of the Lord
     God's which will ere long be made manifest as clearly as the sun
     at high noon. (Selections from the writings of Abdu'l Baha (rev.
     ed) Haifa: Baha'i World Center, 1982), p. 80)

Later the Master clarified that it was only the Universal House of Justice
whose membership was confined to men. Abdu'l Baha wrote:

           "According to the ordinances of the Faith of God, women are
     the equals of men in all rights save only that of membership on
     the Universal House of Justice, for, as hath been stated in the
     text of the Book, both the Head and the members of the House of
     Justice are men. However, in all other bodies, such as the Temple
     Construction Committee, the Teaching Committee, the Spiritual
     Assembly, and in charitable and scientific associations, women
     share equally in all rights with men. (from a newly translated
     tablet).

Shogi Effendi, in a letter written on his behalf to an individual believer,
provided the following authoritative elaboration on this theme:

     "As regards your question concerning the membership of the
     Universal House of Justice; there is a Tablet from 'Abdu'l Baha in
     which he definitely states that the membership of the Universal
     House of Justice is confined to men, and that the wisdom of it
     will be fully revealed and appreciated in the future. In the
     local, as well as the National Houses of Justice, however, women
     have the full right of membership. It is, therefore, only to the
     International House of Justice that they cannot be elected. . ."
     (28 July 1936)

      'Abdu'l Baha Himself, it should be noted, had, as attested by the
above-cited extracts from His Tablets, affirmed that the ineligibility of
women for election to the Universal House of Justice had been set out "in
the text of the Book" and "in the explicit text of the Law of God". In other
words, this provision was established by none other than Baha'u'llah
Himself.

      Further, in response to a number of questions about eligibility for
membership and procedures for election of the Universal House of Justice,
the Guardian's secretary writing on his behalf distinguished between those
questions which could be answered by reference to the "explicitly revealed"
Text and those which could not be. Membership to the Universal House of
Justice fits into the former category. The letter stated:

     "The membership of the Universal House of Justice is confined to
     men. Fixing the number of the members, the procedures for election
     and the term of membership will be known later, as these are not
     explicitly revealed in the Holy Text." (27 May 1940)

Hence, 'Abdu'l Baha and the Guardian progressively have revealed, in
accordance with divine inspiration, the meaning and implications of
Baha'u'llah's seminal teachings. Their interpretations are fundamental
statements of truth which cannot be varied through legislation by the
Universal House of Justice.

      The progressive clarification of the details of the laws concerning
membership of the Houses of Justice has been accompanied by a gradual
implementation of their provisions. For example, based on the texts
available to the believers at the time, membership of local Houses of
Justice was initially confined to men. When the Master began to elaborate on
the difference between the levels of this Institution, He clarified that the
exclusion of women applied only to the Universal House of Justice.
Thereafter, women became eligble for service as members of Local and
National Spiritual Assemblies. Women in the West, who already enjoyed the
benefits of education and opportunities for social involvement, participated
in this form of service much sooner than, for instance, their Baha'i sisters
in Iran who were accorded this right only in 1954, "removing thereby the
last remaining obstacle to the enjoyment of complete equality of rights in
the conduct of the administrative affairs of the Persian Baha'i Community".
It is important to note that the timing of the introduction of the
provisions called for by the interpretations of 'Abdu'l Baha and the
Guardian in relation to the Local and National Spiritual Assemblies, rather
than constituting a response to some external condition or pressure, was
dictated by the principle of progressive implementation of the laws, as
enjoined by Baha'u'llah Himself. Concerning the implementation of the laws,
Baha'u'llah wrote in one of His Tablets:

     "Indeed the laws of God are like unto the ocean and the children
     of men as fish, did they but know it. However, in observing them
     one must exercise wisdom . . . One must guide mankind to the ocean
     of true understanding in a spirit of love and tolerance."

As mentioned earlier, the law regarding the membership of the Universal
House of Justice is embedded in the Text and has been merely restated by the
divinely appointed interpreters. It is therefore neither amenable to change
nor subject to speculation about some possible future condition.

      With regard to the status of women, the important point for Baha'is to
remember is that in the face of the categorical pronouncements in Baha'i
Scripture establishing the equality of men and women, the ineligibility of
women for membership on the Universal House of Justice does not constitute
evidence of the superiority of men over women. It must also be borne in mind
that women are not excluded from any other international institution of the
Faith. They are found among the ranks of the Hands of the Cause. They serve
as members of the International Teaching Center and as Continental
Counsellors. And, there is nothing in the text to preclude the participation
of women in such future international bodies as the Supreme Tribunal.

      Though at the present time, it may be difficult for the believers to
appreciate the reason for the circumscription of membership on the Universal
House of Justice to men, we call upon the friends to remain assured by the
Master's promise that clarity of understanding will be achieved in due
course. The friends, both women and men, must accept this with faith that
the Covenant of Baha'u'llah will aid them and the institutions of His World
Order to see the realization of every principle ordained by His unerring
Pen, including the equality of men and women, as expounded in the Writings
of the Cause.

the Universal House of Justice

--
Cathy Woodgold   TISSATAAFL   Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
https://www.ncf.carleton.ca/~an588/   mailto:an588@freenet.carleton.ca
"Help -- I'm a sentence that's being quoted out of context!"Rid156.htmBack To Messages Page
Ridván Message from the Universal House to the Bahá'ís of the World, 156 BE

Ridván 156

To the Bahá'ís of the World

Dearly loved Friends,

Our hearts are aglow with hope as we survey what has been accomplished in the 
year preceding the fateful, final stretch toward the consummation of the Four 
Year Plan. From the year's momentous beginning with the Eighth International 
Bahá'í Convention, the Bahá'í world has sustained a rising pace of activity that 
has significantly advanced the process of entry by troops. Our community has 
grown appreciably, its human resources have been richly enhanced. From projects 
of expansion to endeavours at consolidation, from social and economic 
development to external affairs, from services of the youth to expressions in 
the arts, from the World Centre of the Faith to remote villages and towns - in 
fact, from whatever angle the community is viewed - progress has been made. 

The prospects for the Plan are impelling. The momentum generated at the 
International Convention pervaded the Counsellors' Conference that immediately 
followed it, further galvanizing the indefatigable participants; and it charged 
the proceedings of the National Conventions held in May, including those of 
Sabah, Sarawak, and Slovakia which met for the first time to form their National 
Spiritual Assemblies. That same energy infused the International Teaching 
Centre, which has been displaying a remarkable potency in the short time since 
its sixth term began on the anniversary of the Declaration of the Bab. 
Concentrating on refining and consolidating their organization, the Counsellor 
members have refrained from their usual travels during this first year, but they 
can be expected after this to resume their visits to various parts of the world, 
so as to reinforce their vitalizing influence on the successful conclusion of 
the Four Year Plan.

Further to these happenings in the Holy Land, the construction projects on Mount 
Carmel, beheld with such thrilling astonishment by the delegates to the 
International Convention, press onward towards their scheduled completion at the 
end of the century. With the opening since last Ridván of all remaining areas of 
construction, the speed of work has reached a new peak. The Centre for the Study 
of the Texts and the Extension to the Archives Building are being readied for 
occupancy within a few weeks; the exterior of the International Teaching Centre 
building is fully clad in marble, while finishing work at all levels of its 
interior is proceeding. The lowering of Hatzionut Avenue, to accommodate the 
bridge which now connects the Terraces of the Shrine of the Bab on both sides of 
the road, has been completed and normal traffic restored. The unfolding 
magnificence of the Terraces has so captured public attention that the 
nineteenth terrace at the top of the mountain has already been opened to 
visitors on a daily schedule, evoking the enthusiastic response of a grateful 
populace. As part of a campaign to attract international attention to the city, 
the Municipality of Haifa has published a pictorial brochure on the Shrine of 
the Bab and the Terraces, available in five major languages besides Hebrew.

We feel compelled to mention at least two other developments at the World Centre 
of a wholly different order: First, the decision to raise the number of pilgrims 
in each group to 150 from 100 -- this to take effect when the revamping, now in 
progress, of the newly acquired building, situated across the way from the 
resting place of the Greatest Holy Leaf, has been completed and use can be made 
of its provision of a pilgrim hall and other facilities for the administration 
of an expanded pilgrimage programme. Second is the notable headway being made, 
despite the inevitable slowness of the process, in the plan to translate texts 
from the Writings of Bahá'u'lláh with a view to publishing a new English volume 
of His works. Effort is being devoted to providing full versions of such major 
Tablets as the Suriy-i-Muluk and the Suriy-i-Haykal, as well as complete texts 
of Tablets addressed to individual kings and rulers. Also scheduled for 
inclusion are the Suriy-i-Ra'is, the Lawh-i-Ra'is and the Lawh-i-Fu'ad.

The Cause of Bahá'u'lláh marches on resistlessly, quickened by the increasing 
application of an approach to the development and use of human resources that is 
systematic. The further creation of national and regional training institutes, 
now numbering 344, has pressed this development forward, with the result that, 
apart from North America and Iran where numerous courses have been given, some 
70,000 individuals have already completed at least one institute course. All of 
this is contributing to a growing body of confirmed, active supporters of the 
Cause. The untold potential of this progression is illustrated in such reports 
as the one received from Chad, where in an area served by an institute more than 
1,000 people embraced the Faith through the individual efforts of those who had 
received training. Understanding of the necessity for systematization in the 
development of human resources is everywhere taking hold.

Collateral with the demonstrated efficacy of training institutes is the 
pragmatic emergence of Regional Bahá'í Councils in selected countries where 
conditions have made the establishment of these institutions necessary and 
viable. Where there is close interaction between a Council and a training 
institute, the stage is set for a galvanic coherence of the processes effecting 
expansion and consolidation in a region, and for the practical matching of the 
training services of institutes to the developmental needs of local communities. 
Moreover, the operational guidelines whereby the Continental Counsellors and the 
Regional Councils have direct access to each other give rise to a further 
institutional relationship which, along with that connecting the Councils to the 
National and Local Spiritual Assemblies, effectuates a dynamic integration of 
functions at the regional level.

The ever-expanding work in social and economic development is also benefiting 
from the operation of those training institutes that give attention to such 
subjects as literacy, primary health care and the advancement of women. The more 
widespread efforts of the Office of Social and Economic Development to promote a 
global process of learning about relevant Bahá'í principles are enhanced by the 
work of these institutes, as well as by the rise of Bahá'í-inspired 
organizations scattered throughout the planet. Clearly, then, the institutional 
capacity to administer development programmes is gaining in strength. This is 
apparent in projects sponsored by Bahá'í institutions or initiated by 
individuals through the inspiration of the Faith. An outstanding example of the 
latter is Unity College, which was created by a family in Ethiopia as the first, 
and since late 1998, the only private college in the country, with a student 
body that swelled to 5,000 during this past year. Another example, on a smaller 
scale but of significance nonetheless, is the initiative taken by a family in 
Buffalo, New York: here, in their home, they have been assisting tens of 
children and youth from the inner city to develop, through Bahá'í spiritual and 
moral teachings, patterns of behaviour that will enable them to overcome 
self-destructive attitudes bred by poverty and racism.

In the area of external affairs, the most energetic actions have been prompted 
by two tragic happenings in Iran. The sudden execution in Mashhad last July of 
Mr. Ruhu'llah Rawhani, the first such official action in six years, registered a 
shock that provoked a worldwide and unprecedented outcry by governments and 
United Nations agencies. In late September the government's intelligence agency 
launched an organized attack on the Bahá'í Institute of Higher Education, 
involving the arrest of 36 members of the faculty and raids on more than 500 
homes across the country. The latter incident inspired a global campaign of 
protest, still in progress, in which academic institutions and associations, 
educators, and student groups have been participating, and in which the press 
has taken a special interest, as reflected in the appearance of substantial 
articles in Le Monde, The New York Times and other major newspapers. The 
successful passage in the United Nations General Assembly last December of yet 
another resolution on Iran, in which the Bahá'ís are distinctly mentioned, must 
surely have been influenced by these two conspicuous manifestations of an 
unrelenting religious persecution.

But intensive as has been the demand upon the friends in all parts of the world 
to defend our beleaguered brethren, much attention was devoted as well to a wide 
range of external affairs endeavours. The four-month-long mission undertaken by 
an emissary of the House of Justice, Mr. Giovanni Ballerio, to islands of the 
Pacific Ocean where he met with 22 heads of state, 5 heads of government and 
more than 40 other high-ranking officials; the efforts pursued by a number of 
National Assemblies, at the urging of the Bahá'í International Community's 
United Nations Office, to promote human rights education; the participation, by 
invitation, of representatives of South Africa's Bahá'í community in the 
proceedings of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, at which they were able 
to recount their record of unflinching support of racial unity throughout the 
years of apartheid; the recent success of communities in Australia, Brazil, 
Finland and Portugal in obtaining the decision of educational authorities to 
include courses on the Bahá'í Faith in the curricula of primary and secondary 
schools - these, not to mention the public information projects that generated 
publicity through all forms of the media, are examples of the broadly based 
enterprises in external affairs that engaged the energies of the community.

A corollary spate of activities involved the use of the arts, of which the 
musical and other artistic performances associated with the celebration in Paris 
of the centenary of the establishment of the Faith in Europe were an outstanding 
instance. The Voices of Baha Choir, composed of 68 members drawn from Europe and 
the Americas, delighted audiences in eight European cities and introduced the 
Faith to many. 'Light and Fire', the completed part of an opera/ballet being 
written by Bahá'í composer Lasse Thoresen of Norway, was successfully performed 
last September at the prestigious music festival in Poland known as the Warsaw 
Autumn, which was opened by the Queen of Sweden. The work is based on recent 
heroic acts of the martyrs in Iran, a fact that exposed the audience to 
knowledge of the Faith. Europe's apparent lead in these particular endeavours 
was also marked by the occasion of the Austrian Chamber Music Festival when the 
Austrian Cross for Sciences and Arts, the highest award of its kind for Austria, 
was presented by the President of the Republic to Mr. Bijan Khadem-Missagh, a 
Bahá'í violinist and conductor. A programme at that same Festival featured the 
recitation of extracts from Bahá'í and other sacred scriptures. But a word, too, 
must be said in recognition of the prominent part being played by youth all over 
the world in their employment of the arts in the teaching work; renditions by 
their dance workshops, in particular, have acquired renown within and outside 
the Bahá'í community.
To the Bahá'ís of the World 4 Ridván 156

We therefore enter this Ridván season, as a community in a dynamic state of 
transformation, enjoying a coherence of vision and activity consonant with the 
aim of advancing the process of entry by troops. And we begin the final year of 
the Plan with a boost in administrative strength, as three countries in Europe - 
Latvia, Lithuania and Macedonia - convoke their first Conventions to form 
National Spiritual Assemblies and thus raise the number of pillars of the 
Universal House of Justice to 182. But beyond this festive moment is a 
chronology of expectations that lists, first and foremost, the conclusion of the 
Four Year Plan at Ridván 2000. This will be followed by the commencement on the 
Day of the Covenant of that very year of a new term of office for the 
Continental Boards of Counsellors, whose members will soon thereafter be called 
to the Bahá'í World Centre for a conference at which, among other matters, the 
features of the next global teaching and consolidation plan will be discussed. 
The Counsellors' Conference will mark the occupation by the International 
Teaching Centre of its permanent seat, an occasion for which Auxiliary Board 
members throughout the world will be invited to join the Counsellors in the Holy 
Land. The Mount Carmel projects will have been completed by this time and the 
preparations will have been well advanced for dedicatory events, scheduled to 
take place on 22 and 23 May 2001, to which a number of representatives from each 
national Bahá'í community will be invited. The details concerning these events 
are to be announced in due course.





This projection of portentous happenings cuts across the divide in time between 
the twentieth century and the new millennium, according to the reckoning of the 
common era. It is a projection that underscores the contrast between the 
confident vision that propels the constructive endeavours of an illumined 
community and the tangled fears seizing the millions upon millions who are as 
yet unaware of the Day in which they are living. Bereft of authentic guidance, 
they dwell on the horrors of the century, despairing over what these could imply 
for the future, hardly appreciating that this very century contains a light that 
will be shed on centuries to come. Ill-equipped to interpret the social 
commotion at play throughout the planet, they listen to the pundits of error and 
sink deeper into a slough of despond. Troubled by forecasts of doom, they do 
battle with the phantoms of a wrongly informed imagination. Knowing nothing of 
the transformative vision vouchsafed by the Lord of the Age, they stumble ahead, 
blind to the peerlessness of the new Day of God.

The pitiful conditions implied by such a state of heart and mind cannot but 
prompt us all to action, unabating action, to fulfil the intentions of a Plan 
whose major aim is to accelerate that process which will make it possible for 
growing numbers of the world's people to find the Object of their quest and thus 
to build a united, peaceful and prosperous life.

Dear Friends: The days pass swiftly as the twinkle of a star. Make your mark 
now, at this crucial turning point of a juncture, the like of which shall never 
return. Make that mark in deeds that will ensure for you celestial blessings - 
guarantee for you, for the entire race, a future beyond any earthly reckoning.

[SIGNED: THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE]

From: <nima_hazini@my-deja.com>
Subject: Re: Liberalism
Date: Sunday, January 09, 2000 8:35 AM

Dear David,

I found this on srb and, with a few major exceptions such as the posters
more optimistic appraisal of practices in Iran over the past decade, it
beautifully reiterates much of my own views on the chief issues which
concern me in this thread. Conscientious Baha'is such as people like
yourself, Pat Kohli and Richard Little would do well to heed what the
poster is saying about the impression that Baha'is are projecting to the
outside world at the very end of the post.

cheers,
Nima

---

According to XXXXX, American Bahai authors are obligated to submit their
manuscripts to the authorities for approval prior to publication.

By way of comparison, presently in Iran, a country which is still far
from being a democracy, authors who write on Islam are not required to
submit manuscripts in advance for approval.  Censorship kicks in only
after publication in cases where a work is deemed to have crossed a red
line. The presence of the red line is unfortunate; but still the line is
not drawn so restrictively as to stifle independent thinking about
religion, radical re-interpretations of religion, self-criticism, or the
criticism of the interpretations of the clergy. Witness the publication
of the books of Abdulkarim Sorush, an advocate of rationality and
democracy, and opponent of religious authoritarianism, totalitarianism,
and intolerance. Witness his criticisms of those in power.
(Incidentally, his books were published many years ago, even before the
recent trend towards democratization!)  Other examples could be
mentioned as well.

This brings me to a question about the Bahai faith.  How could Bahaism
be reconciled with democracy and rationality while it exercises such
surprisingly rigid methods of institutional thought control?

Rationality is synonymous with the critical attitude, the critical
evaluation of all ideas.  Take the critical attitude away, and there is
no rationality, no science, no real learning; what remains is blind
dogmatism.

The freedom of criticism is intimately linked with democracy as well.

Can the Bahai faith be reconciled with true democracy?  Mere voting is
not a touchstone of democracy. There is voting in Syria, Iraq, and Egypt
too. Democracy requires the clash of ideas, the freedom to criticize
authority, and vigorous debate.  Without these essential elements,
voting is a farce.

Authoritarian minds cannot stand criticism and the clash of ideas. They
characterize it as dangerous, since it causes "disunity."  Granted,
there is indeed a semblance of unity if only one viewpoint is allowed to
be voiced. But such unity is hollow and self-destructive, since it leads
to stagnation.  There is *another* type of unity that is actually
reinvigorating and enriching, and that is the unity that arises when you
*tolerate* differences of opinion (which is definitely not the same
thing as saying all opinions are good; one can tolerate a bad opinion),
and the kind of unity that arises when vigorous debate on all matters is
encouraged and respected.

So, is there a liberal trend within the Bahai faith, like there is in
Islam and Christianity for example?  Or, are Bahais overwhelmingly
authoritarian, i.e. a "closed" society which is not open to improvement
through self-criticism?  Are there Bahais who genuinely accept the
arguments for liberalism in, say, John Stuart Mill's _On Liberty_, or
Karl Popper's _The Open Society and Its Enemies_, or William Bartley's
_The Retreat to Commitment_?

Over all, I am gradually gaining the impression that whatever some of
the original assertions of the Bahai scriptures may be, in practice
Bahai institutions and leaders are at heart intolerant, afraid of
pluralism and clash of opinions, and advocates of mind control through
controlling and containing debates. I am also gaining the impression
that Bahai institutions are closed societies, not open societies.  The
policies of the moderators of this newsgroup, as stated in the FAQ
eloquently confirm this point.  Example:

To avoid confusion, articles should not contain unpublished,
unauthorized translations of Baha'i texts. Instead, authors should
paraphrase untranslated materials.

A translation into another language is nothing but an *interpretation*.
To ban ``unauthorized'' translations is precisely to ban
``unauthorized'' interpretations of the scriptures. So, instead of
debating people who post seemingly problematic translations ("clash of
opinions"), the moderators opt for silencing proposed translations!  And
it really does not matter how much training the poster has had in
Persian and Arabic philology and history. If it is not ``authorized,''
it is necessarily ``confusing''!

It is interesting that the moderators say that the purpose of such
censorship is "to avoid confusion."  This is uncannily reminiscent of
the type of rhetoric used by the most autocratic of autocrats in the
Middle East. The stifling of pluralism is always done in the name of
unity, avoidance of confusion, avoidance of deviance and perversion,
etc. But the real purpose is always the same: to immunize those in
power, their world-view, and their personal interpretations of things
against the inconvenience of criticism.

I am afraid of what will become of liberty in the U.S. if one day Bahais
become the majority.  As a rationalist, liberal, and committed Muslim, I
admire the pluralism in the U.S. even though I am not an American. I
suspect that most Americans would have similar sentiments if they became
familiar with certain Bahai practices. Maybe I am wrong, but I am also
gradually beginning to feel that Bahai institutions in the U.S. don't
care a whole lot about the impression they impart to non-Bahais.
Probably this itself will ensure that I will never *really* have to
worry about Bahais becoming the majority (and abolishing liberty).

---

Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.From: <boucaria@my-deja.com>
Subject: Re: Ex-Bahais: Lack of Pastoral Counselling
Date: Tuesday, July 04, 2000 12:32 AM

> "Bahaism works better as a philosophy than as a religion or theocratic
> political system, as a world-embracing attitude rather than as an
> absolutist, infallible institution."

I agree, however, it does claim to be the Religion and Theocratic essence of
a new world order. I joined mainly because of the contact and company. The
people were great. However, when they got stuck into the Institutional work,
The deploying of the "troops", I was left for dead.

As I have said to many people, I find that the Bahais in general can be
summed up as "Administrators Anonymous". They are so caught up in saving the
world that the person who needs Pastoral help is left for dead. And this was
admitted to me by a vast number of People who are still Bahais.

> interdependence. Then, with a spell of some Bahai writings, these
> aspects would become concrete and seem attainable."

"Seem" is the operative word here. The obsession with the deploying of the
"troops", and the focus on the Administrative element is just so surreal that
I guess it was inevitable that I had to re-sign, since I was never educated
in the Faith. And when I did investigate, I turned up way too much that was
not to my liking.

> contact with any Baha'is. Not because I do not like them (I still do
> like many of the individual Baha'is I have known) but I feel like I am

I totally love the people in the Faith who have supported me. There are
various beliefs that are hindrances ( Like if I have an issue with someone, I
cannot, and am not allowed to talk this out with another Bahai, I have to
talk it out with the Bahai concerned... and this has proven damaging ). The
Individual Bahais who I know and have known have been superb, with a few
being not exactly spiritually "right"... But that is another story.

Anyway, the positive experiences I have had with Bahais have been great, but
the negative have been horrendous .

> healing or help from this community no matter how hard I try; I don't
> think the community is healthy; I don't want to become a teaching
> clone; I'm not staying for my own sake." "

Same here. And I, until reading this, have felt like a social Pariah, like I
did something massively wrong. Basically I think the focus is skewed to an
Adminstrative "Utopia".

Campbell.
santeri@eisa.net.au

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Before you buy.From: <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
To: <FG@hotmail.com>
Subject: Re: Universal Declaration of Human Rights & Marshall Case
Date: Monday, April 10, 2000 11:37 AM

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Subject: Re: Universal Declaration of Human Rights & Marshall Case
From: wrldpaul@aol.com (WRLDpaul)
Date: 2000/04/10
Newsgroups: alt.religion.bahai
Hello,

I have been reading these posts with great interest and would like to ask a
question. I myself have been a Bahai' for 13 years, and I was always impressed
witht he emphasis on diversity of thought with in the community. But in all
honesty, I see no such thing now after all of these years. One must toll the
Bahai' line with much care if one is not to be labeled a renegade or outcast.
Where indeed is the diversity of thought with in the rank and file? It seems to
me that indeed there is some diversity of thought here on these boards, but the
diversity seems to originate from those who have left the faith, been
spiritualy condemned by the House, lost their rights, or removed from
membership. I see no hints of diversity or tolerance of differing oppinions
here. I suspect that some of the responses I get here will say that in regards
to unity of races, religions, and other matters explicity stated in the
Writings, there is much room for diversity. But, I ask you, how many ways can
one define unity of races, religion, science and faith? Not many. It seems to
me that only one mode of thought and intellectual freedom is allowed here. Very
disturbing if you ask me.
Then again, perhaps I am missing something.

Paul, pondering on how different he realy is.
:)


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From: K. Paul Johnson <pjohnson@vlinsvr.vsla.edu>
Subject: House warns of opposition "campaign"
Date: Tuesday, June 01, 1999 4:24 PM

Being discussed heatedly on Talisman at the moment, the following
letter was sent to every NSA:

THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE
BAHA'I WORLD CENTRE

Department of the Secretariat
7 April 1999

To all National Spiritual Assemblies

Dear Baha'i Friends,

Issues Related to the Study of the Baha'i Faith

In May of 1998, Baha'i Canada reproduced a collection of letters
which the Universal House of Justice had written to various
individuals on the subject of academic study of the Baha'i Faith.
Copies of this compilation were subsequently mailed by the
Canadian National Spiritual Assembly to its sister Assemblies.
The reprint has now been made generally available in booklet form
by the United States Baha'i Publishing Trust.  The House of
Justice has asked us to forward you a copy of the latter
publication with the following comments.

As a number of the friends are aware,, a campaign of internal
opposition to the Teachings is currently being carried on through
the use of the Internet, a communications system that now reaches
virtually every part of the world.  Differing from attacks
familiar in the past, it seeks to recast the entire Faith into a
socio-poliotical ideology alien to Baha'u'llah's intent.  In the
place of the institutional authority established by His Covenant,
it promotes a kind of interpretive authority which those behind
it attribute to the views of persons technically trained in
Middle East studies.  

Early in 1996, the deliberate nature of the plan was revealed in
an accidental posting to an Internet list which Baha'i
subscribers had believed was dedicated to scholarly exploration
of the Cause.  Some of the people responsible resigned from the
Faith when the Counsellors pointed out to them the direction
their activitities were taking.  A small number of others
continue to promote the campaign within the Baha'i community.

In the past, in situations of a somewhat similar nature, the
patience and compassion shown by `Abdu'l Baha and the Guardian
helped various believers who had been misled by ill-intentioned
persons to eventually free themselves from such entanglements.
In this same spirit of forbearance the Universal House of Justice
has intervened in the current situation only to the extent that
it has been unavoidable, trusting to the good sense and the
goodwill of the believers involved to awaken to the spiritual
dangers to which they are exposing themselves.  Nevertheless,
certain Counsellors and National Spiritual Assemblies are
monitoring the problem closely, and the friends can be confident
that whatever further steps are needed to protect the integrity
of the Cause will be taken.

As passages in the enclosed reprint make clear, this campaign of
internal opposition-- while purporting to accept the legitimacy
of the Guardianship and the Universal House of Justice as twin
succesors of Baha'u'llah and the Centre of His Covenant--
attempts to cast doubt on the nature and the scope of the
authority conferred on them in the Writings.  When other Baha'is
have pointed out that such arguments contradict explicit
statements of the Master, persons behind the scheme have
responded by calling into question the soundness of `Abdu'l
Baha'is own judgment and perspective.  Gradually, these arguments
have exposed the view of those involved that Baha'u'llah Himself
was not the voice of God to our age but merely a particularly
enlightened moral philosopher, one whose primary concern was to
reform existing society.

By itself, such opposition would likely stand little change of
influencing reasonably informed Baha'is.  As one of the letters
in the enclosed reprint (20 July 1997) points out, the scheme
relies for effect, therefore, on exploiting the confusion created
in modern thought by the reigning doctrines of materialism.
ALthough the reality of God's continuous relationship with His
creation and His intervention in human life and history are the
very essen of the teachigns of the Founders of the revealed
religions, dogmatic materialism today insists that even the
nature of religion itself can be adequately understood only
through the use of an academic methodology deigned to ignore the
truths that make religion what it is.

In general, the strategy being pursued has been to avoid direct
attacks on the Faith's Central Figures.  The effort, rather, has
been to sow the seeds of doubt among believers about the Faith's
teachings and institutions by appealing to unexamined prejudices
that Baha'is may have unconciously absorbed from non-Baha'i
society.  In defiance of the clear interpretations of `Abdu'l
Baha and the Guardian, for example, Baha'u'llah's limiting of
membership on the Universal House of Justice to men is
misrepresented as merely a "temporary measure" subject to eventual
revision if sufficient pressure is brought to bear.  Similarly,
Shoghi Effendi's explanation of Baha'u'llah's vision of the
future Baha'i World Commonwealth that will unite spiritual and
civil authority is dismissed in favour of the assertion that the
modern political concept of "separation of church and state" is
someone one that Baha'u'llah intended as a basic principle of the
World Order he has founded.  Particularly subtle is an attempt to
suggest that the Mashriqu'l-Adhkar should evolve into a seat of
quasi-doctrinal authority, parallel to and essentially
independent of the Local House of Justice, which would permit
various interests to insinuate themselves into the direction of
the life processes of the Cause.

(continued in part two)From: Peter Terry <peterry@megalink.net>
Subject: Ficicchia
Date: Saturday, July 08, 2000 2:55 PM

Dear friends:

Ficicchia is a Covenant-Breaker.   In the House's Ridvan 2000 Message it
states:
"...in Germany...Christian denominations which had avoided contact with the
Faith
owing to a book written by a Covenant-breaker...." and goes on to state that
the remedy leading to the reversal of this attitude was a 600 page scholarly
rebuttal (Make The Crooked Straight). MTCS also refers to his expulsion from
the
Faith and includes relevant details including his letter to the Universal
House of
Justice dated April 5, 1978 which culminates in the following threat: "...I
declare that you will from now on have me as an embittered enemy who will
fight you with all possible means at every opportunity...You have brought
upon yourselves my ultimate enmity..."   Dr. Udo Schaeffer points out that
Ficicchia's attacks, which poisoned the attitude of many in German-speaking
countries against the Faith, confirms the dialectic whereby the 'Letters of
Negation' involuntarily  "...cause the Word of God to be exalted, and spread
His signs and tokens far and wide: Were it not for this opposition by the
disdainful....- how could news of the advent of the Primal Point and the
bright dawning of the Day-Star of Baha ever have reached to east and west?"
(Selections from the Writings of 'Abdul-Baha, 195:2).

With best wishes, Peter




Selections from the Writings of Baha'u'llah on Tyranny and Oppression:

Epistle to the Son of the Wolf:

O Shaykh! My Pen is abashed to recount what actually took place. In the land of Sad (Isfahan)
the fire of tyranny burned with such a hot flame that every fair-minded person groaned aloud. 

 

Briefly, in every city the evidences of a tyranny, beyond like or equal, were unmistakably clear
and manifest, and yet none arose in self-defence! 

 

The Faith of God hath cried everywhere, by reason of thy tyranny, and yet thou disportest thyself
and art of them that exult. There is no hatred in Mine heart for thee nor for anyone. Every man of
discernment beholdeth thee, and such as are like thee, engulfed in evident folly. Hadst thou
realized that which thou hast done, thou wouldst have cast thyself into the fire, or abandoned
thine home and fled unto the mountains, or wouldst have groaned until thou hadst returned unto
the place destined for thee by Him Who is the Lord of strength and of might. O thou who art
even as nothing! Rend thou asunder the veils of idle fancies and vain imaginings, that thou
mayest behold the Daystar of knowledge shining from this resplendent Horizon. 

 

We have heard that the provinces of Persia have been adorned with the adornment of justice.
When We observed closely, however, We found them to be the dawning-places of tyranny and
the daysprings of injustice. We behold justice in the clutches of tyranny. We beseech God to set
it free through the power of His might and His sovereignty. 

 

How numerous the oppressors before thee who have arisen to quench the light of God, and how
many the impious who murdered and pillaged until the hearts and souls of men groaned by
reason of their cruelty! The sun of justice hath been obscured, inasmuch as the embodiment of
tyranny hath been stablished upon the throne of hatred, and yet the people understand not. O
foolish one! Thou hast slain the children of the Apostle and pillaged their possessions. Say: Was
it, in thine estimation, their possessions or themselves that denied God? Judge fairly, O ignorant
one that hath been shut out as by a veil from God. Thou hast clung to tyranny, and cast away
justice; whereupon all created things have lamented, and still thou art among the wayward. Thou
hast put to death the aged, and plundered the young. Thinkest thou that thou wilt consume that
which thine iniquity hath amassed? Nay, by Myself! Thus informeth thee He Who is cognizant of
all. By God! The things thou possessest shall profit thee not, nor what thou hast laid up through
thy cruelty. Unto this beareth witness thy Lord, the All-Knowing. Thou hast arisen to put out the
light of this Cause; erelong will thine own fire be quenched, at His behest. He, verily, is the Lord
of strength and of might. The changes and chances of the world, and the powers of the nations,
cannot frustrate Him. He doeth what He pleaseth, and ordaineth what He willeth through the
power of His sovereignty. 

 

O Shaykh! While hemmed in by tribulations this Wronged One is occupied in setting down these
words. On every side the flame of oppression and tyranny can be discerned. 

     
Kitab-I-Aqdas:

Do thou remember the one whose power transcended thy power, and whose station excelled thy
station. Where is he? Whither are gone the things he possessed? Take warning, and be not of
them that are fast asleep. He it was who cast the Tablet of God behind him when We made
known unto him what the hosts of tyranny had caused Us to suffer. Wherefore, disgrace assailed
him from all sides, and he went down to dust in great loss. Think deeply, O King, concerning
him, and concerning them who, like unto thee, have conquered cities and ruled over men. The
All-Merciful brought them down from their palaces to their graves. Be warned, be of them who
reflect. 

 

Hearken ye, O Rulers of America and the Presidents of the Republics therein, unto that which the
Dove is warbling on the Branch of Eternity: "There is none other God but Me, the Ever-Abiding,
the Forgiving, the All-Bountiful." Adorn ye the temple of dominion with the ornament of justice
and of the fear of God, and its head with the crown of the remembrance of your Lord, the Creator
of the heavens. Thus counselleth you He Who is the Dayspring of Names, as bidden by Him
Who is the All-Knowing, the All-Wise. The Promised One hath appeared in this glorified
Station, whereat all beings, both seen and unseen, have rejoiced. Take ye advantage of the Day of
God. Verily, to meet Him is better for you than all that whereon the sun shineth, could ye but
know it. O concourse of rulers! Give ear unto that which hath been raised from the Dayspring of
Grandeur: "Verily, there is none other God but Me, the Lord of Utterance, the All-Knowing."
Bind ye the broken with the hands of justice, and crush the oppressor who flourisheth with the
rod of the commandments of your Lord, the 
Ordainer, the All-Wise. 

 

O people of Constantinople! Lo, from your midst We hear the baleful hooting of the owl. Hath
the drunkenness of passion laid hold upon you, or is it that ye are sunk in heedlessness? O Spot
that art situate on the shores of the two seas! The throne of tyranny hath, verily, been established
upon thee, and the flame of hatred hath been kindled within thy bosom, in such wise that the
Concourse on high and they who circle around the Exalted Throne have wailed and lamented.
We behold in thee the foolish ruling over the wise, and darkness vaunting itself against the light.
Thou art indeed filled with manifest pride. Hath thine outward splendour made thee
vainglorious? By Him Who is the Lord of mankind! It shall soon perish, and thy daughters and
thy widows and all the kindreds that dwell within thee shall lament. Thus informeth thee the All-
Knowing, the All-Wise. 

 

Say: O people, should ye choose to disbelieve in Him, refrain at least from rising up against Him.
By God! Sufficient are the hosts of tyranny that are leagued against Him! 

Tablets of Baha'u'llah: 

Neither the ascendancy of the oppressor nor the tyranny of the wicked hath been able to thwart
His Purpose. How glorified is His sovereignty, how exalted His dominion! 

 

Great God! Although His signs have encompassed the world and His proofs and testimonies are
shining forth and manifest as the light, yet the ignorant appear heedless, nay rather, rebellious.
Would that they had been content with opposition. But at all times they are plotting to cut down
the sacred Lote-Tree. Since the dawn of this Revelation the embodiments of selfishness have, by
resorting to cruelty and oppression, striven to extinguish the Light of divine manifestation. But
God, having stayed their hands, revealed this Light through His sovereign authority and
protected it through the power of His might until earth and heaven were illumined by its radiance
and brightness. Praise be unto Him under all conditions. 

 

May Our Glory rest upon the people of Bah  whom neither the tyranny of the oppressor nor the
ascendancy of the aggressor have been able to withhold from God, the Lord of the worlds.
TAJALL Y T (Effulgences) 

 

O thou who dost magnify My praise! Give ear unto that which the people of tyranny ascribe unto
Me in My days. Some of them say: `He hath laid claim to divinity'; others say: `He hath devised
a lie against God'; still others say: `He is come to foment sedition'. Base and wretched are they.
Lo! They are, in truth, enslaved to idle imaginings. 

 

O kindreds of the earth! Incline your ears unto the Voice from the divine Lote-Tree which
overshadoweth the world and be not of the people of tyranny on earth-- men who have
repudiated the Manifestation of God and His invincible authority and have renounced His
favours-- they in truth are reckoned with the contemptible in the Book of God, the Lord of all
mankind. KAL M T-I-FIRDAWS YYIH (Words of Paradise) 

 

Well is it with the king who keepeth a tight hold on the reins of his passion, restraineth his anger
and preferreth justice and fairness to injustice and tyranny. 

 

The word of God which the Supreme Pen hath recorded on the sixth leaf of the Most Exalted
Paradise is the following: The light of men is Justice. Quench it not with the contrary winds of
oppression and tyranny. 

 

Justice is, in this day, bewailing its plight, and Equity groaneth beneath the yoke of oppression.
The thick clouds of tyranny have darkened the face of the earth, and enveloped its peoples.
Through the movement of Our Pen of glory We have, at the bidding of the omnipotent Ordainer,
breathed a new life into every human frame, and instilled into every word a fresh potency. All
created things proclaim the evidences of this world-wide regeneration. This is the most great, the
most joyful tidings imparted by the Pen of this Wronged One to mankind.

 

Referring to the land of T  (Tihr n) We have revealed in the Kit b-i-Aqdas that which will
admonish mankind. They that perpetrate tyranny in the world have usurped the rights of the
peoples and kindreds of the earth and are sedulously pursuing their selfish inclinations. The 
tyrant [Prince MahmŁd Mˇrz , the Jal lu'd'Dawlih, Governor of Yazd, Persia.] of the land of Y 
(Yazd), committed that which hath caused the Concourse on High to shed tears of blood. 

 

But where are to be found earnest seekers and inquiring minds? Whither are gone the equitable
and the fair-minded? At present no day passeth without the fire of a fresh tyranny blazing 
fiercely, or the sword of a new aggression being unsheathed. Gracious God! The great and the
noble in Persia glory in acts of such savagery that one is lost in amazement at the tales thereof. 

 

Verily, the birds abiding within the domains of My Kingdom and the doves dwelling in the rose-
garden of My wisdom utter such melodies and warblings as are inscrutable to all but God, the
Lord of the kingdoms of earth and heaven; and were these melodies to be revealed even to an
extent smaller than a needle's eye, the people of tyranny would utter such calumnies as none
among former generations hath ever uttered, and would commit such deeds as no one in past
ages and centuries hath ever committed. They have rejected the bounty of God and His proofs
and have repudiated the testimony of God and His signs. They have gone astray and have caused
the people to go astray, yet perceive it not. They worship vain imaginings but know it not. They
have taken idle fancies for their lords and have neglected God, yet understand not. They have
abandoned the most great Ocean and are hastening towards the pool, but comprehend not. They
follow their own idle fancies while turning aside from God, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting. 

 

A year ago an oppressor ruled over this city, and at every instant caused fresh harm. By the
righteousness of the Lord! He wrought that which cast terror into the hearts of men. But to the
Pen of Glory the tyranny of the world hath never been nor will it ever be a hindrance. In the
abundance of Our grace and loving-kindness We have revealed specially for the rulers and
ministers of the world that which is conducive to safety and protection, tranquillity and peace;
haply the children of men may rest secure from the evils of oppression. 

 

The Great Being saith: O well-beloved ones! The tabernacle of unity hath been raised; regard ye
not one another as strangers. Ye are the fruits of one tree, and the leaves of one branch. We
cherish the hope that the light of justice may shine upon the world and sanctify it from tyranny. If
the rulers and kings of the earth, the symbols of the power of God, exalted be His glory, arise and
resolve to dedicate themselves to whatever will promote the highest interests of the whole of
humanity, the reign of justice will assuredly be established amongst the children of men, and the
effulgence of its light will envelop the whole earth. 
     

 

There can be no doubt whatever that if the day-star of justice, which the clouds of tyranny have
obscured, were to shed its light upon men, the face of the earth would be completely
transformed. 

 

The Great Being, wishing to reveal the prerequisites of the peace and tranquillity of the world
and the advancement of its peoples, hath written: The time must come when the imperative
necessity for the holding of a vast, an all-embracing assemblage of men will be universally
realized. The rulers and kings of the earth must needs attend it, and, participating in its
deliberations, must consider such ways and means as will lay the foundations of the world's
Great Peace amongst men. Such a peace demandeth that the Great Powers should resolve, for the
sake of the tranquillity of the peoples of the earth, to be fully reconciled among themselves.
Should any king take up arms against another, all should unitedly arise and prevent him. If this
be done, the nations of the world will no longer require any armaments, except for the purpose of
preserving the security of their realms and of maintaining internal order within their territories.
This will ensure the peace and composure of every people, government and nation. We fain
would hope that the kings and rulers of the earth, the mirrors of the gracious and almighty name
of God, may attain unto this station, and shield mankind from the onslaught of tyranny. 

 

In these days the tabernacle of justice hath fallen into the clutches of tyranny and oppression.
Beseech ye the One true God--exalted be His glory--not to deprive mankind of the ocean of true
understanding, for were men but to take heed they would readily appreciate that whatever hath
streamed from and is set down by the Pen of Glory is even as the sun for the whole world and
that therein lie the welfare, security and true interests of all men; otherwise the earth will be
tormented by a fresh calamity every day and unprecedented commotions will break out. God
grant that the people of the world may be graciously aided to preserve the light of His loving
counsels within the globe of wisdom. We cherish the hope that everyone may be adorned with
the vesture of true wisdom, the basis of the government of the world. 
     

 

Be ye warned, O men of understanding. It ill beseemeth the station of man to commit tyranny;
rather it behoveth him to observe equity and be attired with the raiment of justice under all
conditions. Beseech ye the One true God that He may, through the power of the hand of loving-
kindness and spiritual education, purge and purify certain souls from the defilement of evil
passions and corrupt desires, that they may arise and unloose their tongues for the sake of God,
that perchance the evidences of injustice may be blotted out and the splendour of the light of
justice may shed its radiance upon the whole world. The people are ignorant, and they stand in
need of those who will expound the truth. 

 

The Faith of God hath cried everywhere, by reason of thy tyranny, and yet thou disportest thyself
and art of them that exult. There is no hatred in Mine heart for thee nor for anyone. Every man of
learning beholdeth thee, and such as are like thee, engulfed in evident folly. Hadst thou realized
that which thou hast done, thou wouldst have cast thyself into the fire, or abandoned thine home
and fled into the mountains, or wouldst have groaned until thou hadst returned unto the place
destined for thee by Him Who is the Lord of strength and of might. O thou who art even as
nothing! Rend thou asunder the veils of idle fancies and vain imaginings, that thou mayest
behold the Day-Star of knowledge shining from this resplendent Horizon. 

 

We have heard that the provinces of Persia have been adorned with the adornment of justice.
When We observed closely, however, We found them to be the dawning-places of tyranny and
the daysprings of injustice. We behold justice in the clutches of tyranny. We beseech God to set
it free through the power of His might and His sovereignty. 

 

How numerous the oppressors before thee who have arisen to quench the light of God, and how
many the impious who murdered and pillaged until the hearts and souls of men groaned by
reason of their cruelty! The sun of justice hath been obscured, inasmuch as the embodiment of
tyranny hath been stablished upon the throne of hatred, and yet the people understand not. The
children of the Apostle have been slain and their possessions pillaged. Say: Was it, in thine
estimation, their possessions or themselves that denied God? Judge fairly, O ignorant one that
hath been shut out as by a veil from God. Thou hast clung to tyranny and cast away justice;
whereupon all created things have lamented, and still thou art among the wayward. Thou hast put
to death the aged, and plundered the young. Thinkest thou that thou wilt consume that which
thine iniquity hath amassed? Nay, by Myself! Thus informeth thee He Who is cognizant of all.
By God! The things thou possessest shall profit thee not, nor what thou hast laid up through thy
cruelty. Unto this beareth witness Thy Lord, the All-Knowing. Thou hast arisen to put out the
light of this Cause; ere long will thine own fire be quenched, at His behest. He, verily, is the Lord
of strength and of might. The changes and chances of the world, and the powers of the nations,
cannot frustrate Him. He doeth what He pleaseth, and ordaineth what He willeth through the
power of His sovereignty. 

 

O `Alˇ! Woes and sorrows are powerless to restrain thy Lord, the All-Merciful. Indeed He hath
risen to champion the Cause of God in such wise that neither the overpowering might of the
world nor the tyranny of the nations can ever alarm Him. He calleth aloud betwixt earth and
heaven, saying: The Promised Day is come. The Lord of creation proclaimeth: Verily, there is no
God besides Me, the Almighty, the All-Bountiful. 

 

How vast the number of places that have been ennobled with your blood for the sake of God.
How numerous the cities wherein the voice of your lamentation hath been raised and the wailing
of your anguish uplifted. How many the prisons into which ye have been cast by the hosts of
tyranny. Know ye of a certainty that He will render you victorious, will exalt you among the
peoples of the world and will demonstrate your high rank before the gaze of all nations. Surely
He will not suffer the reward of His favoured ones to be lost. 

 

Persevere thou in helping His Cause through the strengthening power of the hosts of wisdom and
utterance. Thus hath it been decreed by God, the Gracious, the All-Praised. Blessed is the
believer who hath in this Day embraced the Truth and the man of fixed resolve whom the hosts
of tyranny have been powerless to affright. 

 

In this Day the Straight Path is made manifest, the Balance of divine justice is set and the light of
the sun of His bounty is resplendent, yet the oppressive darkness of the people of tyranny hath, 
even as clouds, intervened and caused a grievous obstruction between the Day-Star of heavenly
grace and the people of the world. Blessed is he who hath rent the intervening veils asunder and
is illumined by the radiant light of divine Revelation. Consider how numerous were those who
accounted themselves among the wise and the learned, yet in the Day of God were deprived of
the outpourings of heavenly bounties. 

Hidden Words:

23. O DWELLERS IN THE CITY OF LOVE! Mortal blasts have beset the everlasting candle,
and the beauty of the celestial Youth is veiled in the darkness of dust. The chief of the monarchs
of love is wronged by the people of tyranny and the dove of holiness lies prisoned in the talons of
owls. The dwellers in the pavilion of glory and the celestial concourse bewail and lament, while
ye repose in the realm of negligence, and esteem yourselves as of the true friends. How vain are
your imaginings! 

 

64. O OPPRESSORS OF EARTH! Withdraw your hands from tyranny, for I have pledged
Myself not to forgive any man's injustice. This is My covenant which I have irrevocably decreed
in the preserved tablet and sealed it with My seal of glory. 

From: "Patrick Henry" <Patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com>
Subject: - bahai - universal house of "justice" - Backbiting Prof. Juan Cole, Dept. of History, The University of Michigan
Date: Friday, September 29, 2000 6:58 AM

3 August 1999

From: Department of the Secretariat
Baha'i World Center

Dear Baha'i Friend,

Clearly, no one would dispute the right of Dr. Cole to write and publish
whatever work a publisher is prepared to handle. Nor has anyone questioned
the right of a Baha'i who is interested in such a book to purchase it. To
suggest that the House of Justice is saying otherwise would be to seriously
misconstrue the nature of its concern . . .

As a participant in various Internet discussion groups over the past five
years, and particularly in the last year or two, you cannot but be aware
from these exchanges that Dr. Cole has embarked on a deliberate assault
against the Baha'i Cause, in which he has not hesitated to attack its
institutions, to misrepresent its fundamental teachings, and to abuse the
trust of Baha'is who had been led to believe that they were engaged with him
in a detached and scholarly search for the truth. These same Internet
exchanges exposed you, like other participants, to a flood of calumny and
invective against a great many of your fellow believers, on the part of Dr.
Cole, that is scarcely credible in rational discourse.

Had such a book as Modernity and the Millennium been written by a
disinterested non-Baha'i scholar, its misconception of the nature of
Baha'u'llah's Mission and its other shortcomings would have represented no
more than understandable weaknesses of an honest attempt to explore a
religious phenomenon as yet little understood in the West. Indeed, in this
context, such an attempt to make the Baha'i Faith comprehensible to the
Western academic mind, however inadequate it might appear to knowledgeable
Baha'i scholars, would surely have earned its author a measure of genuine
Baha'i appreciation for the writing and research
skills deployed in devising it.

As you -- like other participants in certain Internet discussion groups --
are well aware, however, the book's author is not a disinterested scholar.
Rather, he is a deeply embittered individual who, as his book was in
preparation, had just denounced in the most intemperate language an apparent
twenty-year allegiance to Baha'u'llah, in the wake of a failed
attempt on his part to impose his private ideological agenda on the
Baha'i community's study of Baha'u'llah's Message. Modernity and
the Millennium represents an effort to provide the current stage of this
long-running scheme with the underpinnings of scholarly rationalization.

What is this rationalization? Although distorted by its evasion of Baha'i
Texts that contradict its main assertions, and blurred by reliance on
speculations peculiar to its author's purpose, the thesis appears to run
somewhat as follows: Baha'u'llah's work and Writings represent essentially
one of several efforts by Middle East thinkers to work out a "response" to
the challenges posed by European modernity in the form of rationalism,
revolution, nationalism, economic upheaval, feminism and other contemporary
developments. Although Oriental in origin, this particular "response", in
contrast to various others, was unusually "progressive", "liberal",
"idealistic", even "radical". Because it "grew up" in a congenial modernist
era, its Author was able gradually to adjust and revise the ideas with which
He had been "grappling", through benefiting (in a manner generally
insinuated rather than explicitly stated) from successive interactions with
other thinkers and movements. By 1862, apparently in order to deal with the
problem of religious exclusivity in the Muslim world, and in response to
some form of "private mystical experience", He "decided to make a prophetic
claim of his own" . . .

The Covenant, the distinguishing feature of Baha'u'llah's Revelation, has
been made the central target of this effort (a maneuver that Dr. Cole's book
is at particular pains to shore up). Although forced to acknowledge the
appointments of `Abdul-Baha and the Guardian as Interpreters of
Baha'u'llah's Message, every effort has been made to call such authoritative
interpretation into question wherever it presents a problem for the notions
being promoted.

Similarly, although ostensibly acknowledging that the Universal House of
Justice is Head of the Baha'i Faith today, this opposition has tried by
every means possible to undermine the broad authority conferred in
Baha'u'llah's own words and emphasized in the Master's Will and Testament.

(In Dr. Cole's book, this agenda makes its appearance in the conclusion:
namely, that the Faith founded by Baha'u'llah has failed in its mission
because, like "the Khomeinist state in Iran", it has been somehow captured
by "fundamentalists", by which term Dr. Cole has repeatedly characterized
the members of the Universal House of Justice.) . . .

With loving Baha'i greetings,

Department of the Secretariat

-----
For his comments and response, see
https://www-personal.umich.edu/~jrcole/bahai/1999/modernit.htm

--
FG
www.FG.com
The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience
https://members.nbci.com/FG/index.htm







From: <wahdat@hotmail.com>
Subject: Re: Universal Declaration of Human Rights & Marshall Case
Date: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 8:05 PM

Reponse for Dermod.

--
My respone to Rick is:-

My dear saintly Aunt Tess, God rest her, always advised the necessity of
"fully engaging the brain BEFORE putting pen to paper."

I fear I must amplify what Rick has failed to see. Alison and the House
of Haifa entered into an agreement whereby she became a member of the
Faith and BOTH parties assumed the RIGHTS and obligations associated
therewith. Once entered into that agreement she has a RIGHT of
membership unless/until she is in fundamental breach of her obligations
under that agreement. Juan is quite right in what he has said- Rick has
chosen a particularly obtuse interpretation to suit his own ends of
"defending the indefensible" rather than seeking truth and justice.
(What is all this formality - Dr. Cole, Mr. Ryder - I thought we were
all friends on these discussion fora?)

In Anglo Saxon or United Kingdom law the terms of agreement may be
actually stated or implied. The terms under which the House of Haifa can
terminate the agreement are stated in many many letters and quotations
from Scripture. I will go into them, Rick, if you really want me to but
as I originally stated I did not want to go into them in detail as I did
not wish to insult anybody's intelligence. The House of Haifa has
arbitrarily terminated the agreement: -

  a.. It has cited no specific breach or breaches of term(s), whether
stated or implied, on her part, contrary to the terms of the agreement.
  b.. It has had no consultation with her of any kind whatsoever in an
effort to emend her behaviour and better adhere to whatever rules or
standard of behaviour it expects, contrary to the terms of the agreement
  c.. It has neither counselled advised nor warned her that her "pattern
of behaviour" was such as to warrant the House terminating the
agreement, contrary to the terms of the agreement.
Should the House of Haifa wish to amend the underlying conditions of the
agreement there is a strong presumption in Common Law that it cannot
arbitrarily do so. Rather must it submit amendments to the other parties
to the agreement thereby allowing them the right to accept or reject
them and terminating the agreement if needs be or must be. I understand
that this form of suspension is new to the Bahai Community, is
undocumented and hence contrary to Bahai and Common Law and as Juan has
so cogently noted, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It is also
a flagrant and reprehensible breach of natural justice - but of course
none of these things are important to Rick and the stooges planted here
and elsewhere to parrot what the House of Haloed Hallions of Haifa tells
them to. My understanding is therefore that this is an arbitrary breach
of Alison's rights under a subsisting agreement to which there has been
no agreed amendment. The obvious answer is of course to bring it to a
Court of Law, which is an independent body and whose judgement Bahais
(and others) are bound to accept.

Rick wrote: -
>Are we merely to infer that the action taken in this case had to do
>with some
>specific breach of rules and not with a pattern of behavior that
>demonstrates the extent to which Ms. Marshall no longer qualifies for
>membership?

A "pattern of behaviour" encompasses and includes a series of specific
behavioural actions which constitute and establish the fact of a
pattern. In other words Alison did not breach one or more terms of the
agreement - she was in breach of one or more terms on a consistent basis
and sufficient in number to constitute a pattern. What were they? Why
was she not informed of the breach(es) and given opportunity to change
her ways? Was she continually drunk and disorderly? Did she constantly
(or noisily) break wind at National Convention or was it something
worse? Should she (and we) not have been told? She has after all been
humiliated in front of her local community. Has she and they no right to
know why?

Above all, had she no right to DEFEND herself of the charges levelled or
have we finally reached such maturity that a bunch of elderly "Grumpy
Old Men" at the House of Haifa, dependent on a network of "touts" for
their information can unerringly and infallibly guide the ways of the
world? Supposing the information was wrong - supposing the "touts" are
also slimy snakes with an agenda of their own - what then? It was to
obviate this kind of abuse that open justice in Civil Courts was
established and is so firmly defended. An Appeal is out of the question
as the infallibility of the House means it cannot make a mistake in the
first place.

In the days of the Holy Inquisition the accused did not know the charges
levelled, did not know the accusers, did not know and could not question
the witnesses. Is that what we have regressed to? If it is I think that
the world should know that the House of Haifa has decided to drag us
all, kicking and screaming, back to the Middle Ages! I think we can do
much better than that!

Why not face the fact, Rick, that you belong to an organisation that is
run by "Daleks" whose only thought is to exterminate those who disagree
with them. If I criticise a politician or any
institution of government I am merely exercising a right to express a
point of view - I don't get thrown into jail for doing it, for civilised
society recognises the advantages of free speech and the expression of
dissent. That's what makes progress, that's what makes us mature adults,
not a diehard cleaving to selected and selective aspects of what Mammy
says, because Mammy knows best after all!

You and the House of Haifa would profit from examining the experience
here on Craggy Island. We are fundamentally divided - we have to learn
to live together - we have started to learn that killing each other is
not a solution. We have opted for the path of reconciliation based on
respect for each other's legitimate aspirations and interpretation of
our history and culture. It is a long hard path beset with difficulty!
It is the only way! Expelling Alison is not the way to "Unity in
Diversity!

Were there a shred of intelligence and common sense in Haifa they would
have left Alison and all the dissenters alone, much as the Anglican
Church tolerates diversity of opinion, and not turned them into modern
day martyrs. Bahaidom is increasingly in the position of having to
defend its actions - and the House is best at giving its enemies the
necessary ammunition! For a missionary faith this is a diabolical
situation to be in - far from entry by troops you'll be lucky to
raise a platoon.

Needless to say I have "divine assurance" that I am right on my
interpretation of this sad and sorry affair - as the vast bulk of the
fundamentalist inhabitants of Craggy Island, despite exposure to the
Teachings for over fifty years, have, inspired by the Almighty, opted
for the Protestant/Catholic fundamentalism, which they grew up with and
know to be a proven superior product. Are the Bahais coming in to
compete with them in this market place? They haven't a mission!

As dear saintly Aunt Tess would have put it, (she had an answer for
everything) -

"Convince a man against his will,

He's of the same opinion, still!"

Yours (still) in the bunker,

Dermod

PS Rick concluded:
>I'm afraid the remainder of Mr. Ryder's remarks, while long on
>beautiful  rhetoric, remain quite irrelevant to the present issues.

Thanks for the compliment on the old rhetoric - your dismissive and
patronising comment however does not make it go away. We shall let
history and the brothers and sisters on Talisman decide whether Paisley
is a better bigot than the House of Haifa or whether or not the
principle of "set aside" of Scripture etc. is applicable or not! That
you fail to answer and instead, try to patronise me is doubtless an
indication that you have no answer.

PPS On reflection, Alison is far too much of a lady to have broken wind
at National Convention, so it must have been a much worse deviant
pattern of behaviour. Wowee! Can't wait to find out what it was!





Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.Path:
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From: Henry Patrick <henry@patrtick.com>
Newsgroups: alt.religion.bahai,talk.religion.bahai
Subject: Re: [BAHAI] uhj lies to US State Dept re Human Rights
Date: Fri, 03 Mar 2000 09:59:34 -0600
Organization: Give me vegamite or give me death!
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Xref: rQdQ alt.religion.bahai:15615 talk.religion.bahai:12814

He should have just posted the url:

https://kevdb.infospace.com/_1_4MM5U9B0LUUYOB__info.amtech/kevdb?KCFG=us&OTMPL=/res/r2.ht
ml&FF=1&QFM=n&QN=Glaysher&QF=&QC=rochester&QS=mi&TQA=668+Bolinger+St&TQC=roches
ter&TQS=mi&QP=&QST=&QHN=&QZ=48307&QK=1&QO=US&QD=&DM=505&&QI=0&jnum=3&ji
ndex=0

I think it's Ameritech owes Fred an appology, not Mark, after all they put his
name and phone number on the internet!

Kathy Cole wrote:

> (Just popping in for a sec; I'd unsubbed several weeks ago. Pat,
> I got your email but haven't yet had a chance to answer.)
>
> In article <hH1v4.125$1j4.6711@nsw.nnrp.telstra.net>, "Mark says...
> >
> >Pat and all others concerned,
> > I probably misstepped the guidelines by posting Freddys Facts ........
> >but I think it will give Fred a chance to realize that he is not-so
> >anonomous anymore and might wish to quit cross-posting.
>
> You owe Fred an apology and you owe him one now. You are welcome
> to disclose your own personal contact information whenever *you*
> want to. You have no such rights to make those decisions for other
> people.
>
> And, as I had repeatedly tried to convey, sinking to his level, or
> in this one case, below his level, breeds sympathy _for_ Fred,
> which can hardly have been your intention.
>
> Let it go, after posting an apology and cancelling your prior
> message disclosing Fred's home phone number. Put him in your
> killfile and LEAVE HIM THERE. You're lucky you're not losing
> your internet access over this; you may yet if Fred complains.
>
> --
> Kathy Cole ~ kathy@scconsult.com (home)

It is nice to see that Fred can actually write a real posting here. Now if
we can get Fred to quit cross-posting to people who don't want to here or
see of him. I have an idea. I think Fred needs to quit hiding behind his
usual spam postings of Patrick Henry. So ..... here goes...... 'give me
liberty or,
give Fred a call:
FG , 668 Bolinger Street, Rochester, MI, 48307-2819
(248) 608-6424
and as you can see, I have cross-posted this to all of Fred Preselected
news-servers. Let your fingers do the walking.
Mark

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From: "Mark Elderkin" <elderkin@nor.com.au>
Newsgroups: alt.religion.bahai
Subject: Get it straight!
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Xref: rQdQ alt.religion.bahai:15545
Fred,
You have now raised me to cult status ..... It's funny, I am sitting
here in my office in a little town in Australia and have become some kind of
rhetorical terrorist. Not! I don't wish anyone anyharm at anytime. I am
guilty of having posted Freddys Facts here on the NewsServer. It is my way
of saying that you need to come out of the closet and get a life. You seemed
to have made a life out of spam-posting sleazy innuendos about people you
haven't met, and about a subject that you don't really care about. The
Universal House of Justice(God Love Em) has never corresponded with me on
any of these issues and I suspect they probably won't. It would be a
highlight of my life if they did.
I have only used my little search tools here on the net, and found the
many email addresses that you and some members of your family are currently
using and then did a quick address search of those email. Hollywood should
contact me for the next Bond Film! Mixed... not stirred.
Anyway, I get a bit emotional when freaks like you hide behind your
keyboards and think that you can say what you want, write what you want, and
then think that no one else has any right to let you know what they think.
You change your name, put filters on your email, and then try to hide. Now,
the hiding is over. You will probably be little less likely to slander and
misquote when you know that people can reach you and tell you exactly that.
From now on I will contact you away from this news-server as I fear that
it is interrupting the flow of very positive exchange of ideas. Fred ....
please don't hesitate to call me on 011 610265842150. Just don't call
collect. As far as everyone else concerned ............ love you all.
Mark E. Elderkin

From: "Curious" <Kashani@ozemail.com.au>
Subject: Re: Why I don't respond to bahai fundamentalists
Date: Friday, November 03, 2000 9:52 AM

John McQueed <jmcqueed@qwest.net> wrote in message
news:QhkM5.948$QG2.251882@news.uswest.net...
> Patrick,
>
> If you have such a hatred for the members of the Bahai Faith and it's
> leaders,
Oh.....I dunno.....Perhaps I haven't been here long enough....but I haven't
seen any hatred for the members of the faith.....more of a profound and
prolonged distaste for what is being done with, to and in the name of the
faith.
> then why the hell don't you resign from the Faith and let this
> whole line of crap drop?
Seems obvious the lad is committed to a range of 'core value' issues,
justice being not the least.
Seems he is prepared to fight long and hard for those values and his faith.

> "Patrick Henry" <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com> wrote in message
> news:svo9pn9ea6uv7e@corp.supernews.com...
> > After over four years of observing the tactics of
> > bahai fundamentalists, I've learnt a few things about
> > the way they operate:
> >
> > 1. Always smear and attack the individual.
I have been around (here and the community) long enough to see that take
place.
> > 2. Lure into supposed discussion then cut the jugular.
Yea....that too.
> > 3. Work together to create the perception for non-bahais
> >      that the individual is unbalanced, aberrant, etc....
Yes........mad, bad or a CB.
> > 4.  Change or ignore the subject.
Without doubt......standard procedure.
> > Attempting to discuss anything with them is simple a
> > waste of time and energy, as long as the uhj uses
> > "review" to suppress all free thought and discussion
> > and encourages such unseemly tactics.
Haven't reached the stage of 'published works'.....don't know.
> > I have many interests in life. Documenting bahai fundamentalism
> > is only one of them. Those who desire conversation may find
> > it elsewhere or with someone else. Bahai fundamentalists are
> > only interested in smearing others, pretending they want to
> > talk. An old bahai fundamentalist Technique, well documented
> > in "The Baha'i Technique":
> > https://members.nbci.com/FG/technique.htm
Tis a fair summary.

There be more than enough grounds for inquiry and discussion on the issues
raised.
Is the cause so frail it cannot accommodate the dissenting voice?

Curious

> > Others may disagree, fine. I'm busy. There are many hidden
> > agendas among my fellow bahais. No one is obligated to
> > interact or in specific ways others might want.
> >
> > Nobody has to read my reposts who has done so already. My
> > Message Rules are full of fundamentalists. Others can use the same
> > technology to filter out my reposts.They're intended for the
> > uninformed.... And they will be staying on the newsgroups I choose
> > as long as bahai censorship continues. It should be evident that
> > fundamentalists desire to suppress all knowledge of their
> > suppression and coercion of bahais and non-bahais over the
> > last decade or more now.
> >
> > I doubt most will be able to penetrate the veil of lies and
> > smears of my fellow bahais. Perhaps eventually someone will.
> > I hope so. It is my deepest desire to bear witness to the
> > distortion of Baha'u'llah's Teachings by the universal house of
> > "justice" and their appointed, delegated lackies on
> > talk.religion.bahai....
> >
> > People are entitled to their opinions. I to mine. I am
> > interested in only preserving the record of what bahai
> > fundamentalists have done. Others may read it and decide
> > for themselves. Again, it is my view that no "meaningful dialogue"
> > can take place as long as the uhj imposes censorship under
> > "review" and allows and encourages the tactics of character
> > assassination and so forth.... I choose not to allow the
> > fanatics among my fellow bahais to pull the wool over the
> > eyes of outside observers by getting me to play along
> > with their charade.... Others may decide these matters as
> > they wish. This is my decision.
> >
> > I'm not interested in talking TO or WITH bahai fundamentalists. I've
> > done that in the past four years. Anyone interested in my views
> > may read them in my archives or glean them from my reposts,
> > which, in my view, preserve the historical record of how low bahai
> > fanatics have been willing to go.... Others may read or ignore them.
> >
> > People may judge for themselves on a scanty familiarity
> > with the bahai faith, if they wish. The more intelligent and
> > perceptive people will look at the EVIDENCE. They are
> > the people I am interested in reaching regarding the fanatics among
> > my fellow bahais who are desperate to discredit me and its other
> > many, many victims, documented on my website. There will be those
> > who give talk.religion.bahai and the EVIDENCE a cursory look
> > and fail to understand what is really taking place. Many, alas,
> > have been duped....
> >
> > The fanatics among my fellow bahais will stop at nothing to
> > deceive outside observers, the general public, prominent people,
> > etc. I can only hope by serving humbly, as the self-appointed
> > archivist/historian for talk.religion.bahai and for all the many victims
> > of the "universal" house of "justice," that someday someone will come
> > along who will dig deep enough into the record that the truth will
> > begin to surface. It is my hope that then the distortions of the uhj
> > will begin to purged, it will gradually reform itself, acknowledging
> > the broad and liberal Teachings of Baha'u'llah that it has
> > suppressed now for so long.....
> >
> > --
> > FG
> > www.FG.com
> > The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience
> > https://members.nbci.com/FG/index.htm
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
>
>

From: "Curious" <Kashani@ozemail.com.au>
Subject: Re: Why I don't respond to bahai fundamentalists
Date: Saturday, November 04, 2000 4:07 AM

<patk9018@my-deja.com> wrote in message news:8tv0qr$nu0$1@nnrp1.deja.com...
> In article <4iAM5.14454$SF5.316596@ozemail.com.au>,
>   "Curious" <Kashani@ozemail.com.au> wrote:
> > >
> > > If you have such a hatred for the members of the Bahai Faith and
> it's
> > > leaders,
> > Oh.....I dunno.....Perhaps I haven't been here long enough....but I
> haven't
> > seen any hatred for the members of the faith.....more of a profound
> and
> > prolonged distaste for what is being done with, to and in the name of
> the
> > faith.
>
> Often the eyes see what the mind sees already.
Ahhhhhhhh.......Master Pat....When I can take the pebble from your hand will
it be time for me to go?
>  You expect disappointment with what Baha'is have done, and you see that.
Do I Pat? Why thank you for the insight. I'm not sure if your 'reading' is
based on a new virtual long distance psychoanalysis or just old time
parapsychology. Either way...am I required to pay? Is there a psychic hot
line number I should ring? (I thought these powers were for the next realm?)
 I have a  number of expectations of Baha'is, I was not aware that I had
ever indicated that 'disappointment was one of them. I thought I  was just
coming to terms with my preconception of Baha's as a mob "Full of
surprises"....now I'm all in a tiz.
Given that you are the third Baha'i who has indicated that their telepathic
powers are sufficiently  advanced to know my mind, (and to know that my
thoughts run counter to my words), I can only bow and genuflect to my
spiritual superiors.
>Perhaps it really is there.  Others have had difficulties communicating
with
> the individual and are now on the long list of contributors he has
> dismissed as fanatics and purportedly killefiled.
Do you think (read or channel)(sorry) that there might be any fanatics about
Pat?
It's just that I've started keeping an eye out and I don't want to be caught
off guard....or disappointed.
> https://www.deja.com/[ST_rn=ap]/getdoc.xp?AN=687510146&fmt=text
>
> > Seems obvious the lad is committed to a range of 'core value' issues,
> > justice being not the least.
> > Seems he is prepared to fight long and hard for those values and his
> faith.
>
> The name "justice" and certainly "conscience" gets tossed about.  fred
> fought long and hard to get trb formed.  When it was formed, the fight
> continued w/o notice, he still posted that Baha'is had voted against
> trb when his data showed most Baha'is voted for it, that it would not
> have passed without the the Baha'i vote.  Most readers are confused as
> to what his faith may be, but we can definitely see fighting going on.
> Fred fights for the right to crosspost his messages where they are off-
> topic, such as SCI and SCI.  He fights for the right to regurgipost his
> messages here, generally ignoring replies.  He fights for the right to
> libel the adminsitrative order based on his own suspicions.  He fights
> for the right to set aside the charter he for trb which he helped
> draft, when it is obvious he is not interested in discussion, but
> dictating.
Oh.......I see......He's 'Net Offensive'.....a 'virtual bastard' as opposed
to a real bastard.
> > > "Patrick Henry" <patrick_Henry@bigfoot.com> wrote in message
> > > news:svo9pn9ea6uv7e@corp.supernews.com...
> > > > After over four years of observing the tactics of
> > > > bahai fundamentalists, I've learnt a few things about
> > > > the way they operate:
> > > >
> > > > 1. Always smear and attack the individual.
> > I have been around (here and the community) long enough to see that
> take
> > place.
>
> Sure, claim that Susan Maneck has been 'flooding' talk.religion.bahai
> in August 2000 (@12 messages) while sending (@36 messages yourself.
Not sure that accusations of 'flooding' a forum are what was in mind when
"smear and attack the individual" are referred to........I was thinking more
along the lines of "they are Mad, Bad, CBs"........(at least that's what I
think I was thinking):-)

> > > > 2. Lure into supposed discussion then cut the jugular.
> > Yea....that too.
>
> Try disagreeing w/ Fred on something.
OK......Hey!.......Fred!........Yho!.......Your take on the Cath Freeman
loss of rights was way off course....out of left field.....wrong.....and a
beat up!........You...You.....Big Dummy You!
(Clasps hand to throat  and waits)
> > > > 3. Work together to create the perception for non-bahais
> > > >      that the individual is unbalanced, aberrant, etc....
> > Yes........mad, bad or a CB.
> > > > 4.  Change or ignore the subject.
> > Without doubt......standard procedure.
>
> Try disagreeing w/ Fred on something.
What! Again!?!........Strewth Pat I hope you can see into the future as well
as read minds....
(And I think I've run out of points of disagreement.......is it ok to make
one up?)
Fred!....Fred!........Crosposting  and Spaming are the tools of Satan.
God fearing  people will hate you for it and you will burn in several levels
of damnation.
> > > > Attempting to discuss anything with them is simple a
> > > > waste of time and energy, as long as the uhj uses
> > > > "review" to suppress all free thought and discussion
> > > > and encourages such unseemly tactics.
> > Haven't reached the stage of 'published works'.....don't know.
>
> Fred is telling the world that the AO is suppressing his freedom of
> speech.  Either his message passed review or it didn't, but Fred IS
> getting his message out, even if it seems to disprove his point.
Ahhhh....I think I'm getting a grip on it now Pat. It's not about whether or
not 'review' is a legitimate tool for academic writing.... it's about  Freds
option to take his message onto the net inspite of the review
process.................................know what I'm thinking now Pat?

> > > > I have many interests in life. Documenting bahai fundamentalism
> > > > is only one of them. Those who desire conversation may find
> > > > it elsewhere or with someone else. Bahai fundamentalists are
> > > > only interested in smearing others, pretending they want to
> > > > talk. An old bahai fundamentalist Technique, well documented
> > > > in "The Baha'i Technique":
> > > > https://members.nbci.com/FG/technique.htm
> > Tis a fair summary.
>
> Projection.
Dam.....and I thought I had my psychic shutters down!
> > There be more than enough grounds for inquiry and discussion on the
> issues
> > raised.
> > Is the cause so frail it cannot accommodate the dissenting voice?
> >
> Dissent if fine.  Reguripostings of messages which the poster will not
> discuss is an annoyance.   This group is for discussion.
Yes......I do agree Pat, it is a bother and a nuisance....my mind comes to
two divergent options
a) Attempt to shut him down and shut him up.
b) Give every opportunity for the issues of concern to be discussed
openly-fairly,fully and frankly out in the Baha'i community where it counts.
Think I'll be disappointed Pat?
> These are my opinions, based on my observations over the years.  You
> have your observations, and opinions, which may or may not change as
> you observe.
I respect your opinions Pat, I truly do...........your psychic
abilities?.............well..........

Take care...
Wishing you light,love'n laughter......
"Till time brings change..."

Curious.
> KN,
> - Pat
> kohli@ameritel.net
>
>
> Sent via Deja.com https://www.deja.com/
> Before you buy.

From: "Curious" <Kashani@ozemail.com.au>
Subject: Re: Why I don't respond to bahai fundamentalists
Date: Sunday, November 05, 2000 3:47 AM

<patk9018@my-deja.com> wrote in message news:8u2ofp$hr7$1@nnrp1.deja.com...
> Allahu Abha
>
> In article <4lQM5.15081$SF5.328722@ozemail.com.au>,
>   "Curious" <Kashani@ozemail.com.au> wrote:
> >
> > <patk9018@my-deja.com> wrote in message news:8tv0qr$nu0
> $1@nnrp1.deja.com...
> > > In article <4iAM5.14454$SF5.316596@ozemail.com.au>,
> > >   "Curious" <Kashani@ozemail.com.au> wrote:
>
> > >
> > > Often the eyes see what the mind sees already.
> > Ahhhhhhhh.......Master Pat....When I can take the pebble from your
> hand will
> > it be time for me to go?
>
> I dunno.  I've seen complaints repeated for months after the fact when
> someone sent someone else pictures in an email.
A bit subtle for me Pat. Is it a Zen parable?...........or?...........I've
had my 'whinge' about the absence of due process and now (seeing that it's
ancient history) I can wander off now?
(snip)
> I'm sorry.  I've expressed myself poorly.  I've assumed that you are
> like me.  I should have written these thing first.  I get disappointed
> by things that Baha'is have done.  When I enrolled a Baha'i warned me
> that the biggest challenge would be the friends.
No probs Pat.
I think perhaps the warning can be traced back to the Master....what
troubles/disappoints me is when this warning is used as a
justification/license for abuse. As if, because we are  warned or the
behavior is predicted, that some how makes it acceptable as something to be
simply endured.
(snip)
>
> > > Try disagreeing w/ Fred on something.
> > OK......Hey!.......Fred!........Yho!.......Your take on the Cath
> Freeman
> > loss of rights was way off course....out of left
> field.....wrong.....and a
> > beat up!........You...You.....Big Dummy You!
> > (Clasps hand to throat  and waits)
>
> Brilliant, now have a go with Fred when he regurges on Cathy Freeman.
No one regurges on Cath....she's too quick for that Pat.

> > > Try disagreeing w/ Fred on something.
> > What! Again!?!........Strewth Pat I hope you can see into the future
> as well
> > as read minds....
> > (And I think I've run out of points of disagreement.......is it ok to
> make
> > one up?)
> > Fred!....Fred!........Crosposting  and Spaming are the tools of Satan.
> > God fearing  people will hate you for it and you will burn in several
> levels
> > of damnation.
>
> Hmmm, I appreciate your patience and persistence in trying to find
> something you might disagree on, but in the spamming/crossposting vein,
> you might suggest to him that some of his beefs with the US NSA are not
> relevant on SCI and remind him it is discouraged in the trb charter,
> which he co-sponsored.
Next time I bump into him I'll have a quiet word.

> > > Fred is telling the world that the AO is suppressing his freedom of
> > > speech.  Either his message passed review or it didn't, but Fred IS
> > > getting his message out, even if it seems to disprove his point.
> > Ahhhh....I think I'm getting a grip on it now Pat. It's not about
> whether or
> > not 'review' is a legitimate tool for academic writing.... it's
> about  Freds
> > option to take his message onto the net inspite of the review
> > process.................................know what I'm thinking now
> Pat?
>
> I don't think it is just about Fred going to the net.  We are on the
> net; its about the repetition, the insistence on cross-posting and the
> refusal to discuss.  The NGs are supposed to be for discussions.
Perhaps....just having a stab in the dark here Pat....perhaps Fred feels
that (in the absence of due process) that annoying Net terrorism is a viable
and legit tactic.(Seems to be a fair bit of rock throwing going on in the
world at the moment........shoot them or invite them to the peace table?)
> > > Projection.
> > Dam.....and I thought I had my psychic shutters down!
>
> It could happen to the most street savy survivor once or twice.
>
> > > > There be more than enough grounds for inquiry and discussion on
> the
> > > issues
> > > > raised.
> > > > Is the cause so frail it cannot accommodate the dissenting voice?
> > > >
> > > Dissent if fine.  Reguripostings of messages which the poster will
> not
> > > discuss is an annoyance.   This group is for discussion.
> > Yes......I do agree Pat, it is a bother and a nuisance....my mind
> comes to
> > two divergent options
> > a) Attempt to shut him down and shut him up.
> > b) Give every opportunity for the issues of concern to be discussed
> > openly-fairly,fully and frankly out in the Baha'i community where it
> counts.
> > Think I'll be disappointed Pat?
>
> I'm learning.  to answer your question, my crystal ball has just fogged
> over.  a. Attempts to get Fred to conform with terms of service, etc.
> will provide only temporary effect.  Fred has been kicked off of AOL
> and other ISPs; it seems to have no effect on him.
Sorry Pat....I think we are talking at cross purposes. I see Freds Net
behavior as a symptom of preceding events...I don't know enough about those
events to be inclined one way or the other. I do know that one mans 'freedom
fighter' is another mans 'terrorist' and that getting people to the table
(real table-where it matters-not virtual) is the preferred option.

>  This is like your LSA and their advice to accept what you can not change.
No Pat, my LSA advised to ignore what could be changed and (like a good
proportion of this forum) turned a blind eye to proposals to facilitate
change.
A big difference me thinks.
>  Many are frustrated by Fred's conduct, just as you are frustrated by the
conduct
> of a Baha'i in your real world.
Ahhhh Pat, you underestimate my capacity for frustration....it is not
confined to 'a' Baha'i. I expect (as forewarned) to be tested by
individuals, I expect to come across all sorts of dysfunctional individual
behavior. What I don't expect, what I will not abide, is when the collective
response to abusive behavior is either totally inadequate or tends to
encourage it.
(ie I am not as shocked by those acts of child abuse perpetrated by Priests
as I am by the Institutional response that permits or encourages it to
happen again).
> b. This place is open 24/7 for discussion of issues, as well as the
> other stuff that goes on.
Yes, but it serves as no more than a media forum in which members of the
community might be alerted to and debate particular issues. It is not the
forum in which real change will be facilitated or implemented. Fred has
obviously decided (right or wrong) that to engage in protracted debate is
futile. I have had  sufficient encounters to lean me to conclude he might be
right in this.
I choose to persist in debate for change. Fred chooses to spam like a
Palestinian youth.

I still reckon that the community does not provide forums to address serious
and contentious issues......nor is it inclined to discuss the merits or
mechanisms of doing so.

> > Take care...
> > Wishing you light,love'n laughter......
> > "Till time brings change..."
>
> The change it brings are not always the change we requested.
That's ok......Gran always said "a change is as good as a holiday".....
(But then again she also said " Don't count your chickens until you've burnt
all your bridges behind you"..............silly old chook)

Curious.

From: "Mark Elderkin" <mee@tsn.cc>
Subject: >>Freddy's facts......
Date: Sunday, March 19, 2000 4:07 PM

As I have done before and shall continue to do: I think it is very important
for the general public here be able to communicate with Fred. His continual
spamming and his attempt to inflame posts between this news server and
others, is a clear attempt to disrupt the normal flow of discussion. He
needs to be told that his actions are not welcome. With a little research,
it is quickly possible to attribute the majority of his presentation as
absolute rubbish.
Mr. FG, 668 Bolinger Street, Rochester, MI. 48307-2819
to call: (246)608-6424 in the USA.

From: "Randy Burns" <randy.burns4@gte.net>
Subject: Re: Arafat Bahais....
Date: Saturday, October 28, 2000 1:59 PM

John

The Baha'i Faith administration usese the techniques made available from
Social Psychology to try and maintain its leadership over rank and file
Baha'is.  One of the techniques is to demonize anyone (former member) who
leaves the group or does not follow explicit directions.  This is an age old
technique that can be follow thru time and place for thousands of years.
One might wonder why the BF is not free of it!

If you want to know more purchase a good college text on social psychology.

Sincerely, Randy
--

John McQueed <jmcqueed@qwest.net> wrote in message
news:a6nK5.3584$WG.334011@news.uswest.net...
> I have agood question about this. What reason does the Baha'i Faith have
for
> victimizing the people named in the quote below? some of them may have
been
> members of the Baha'i Faith at one time and left it, but that is no reason
> for victimizing someone or they may not agree with some or all of the
> teachings of the Faith, and that is also no reason for victimizing
someone.
> what would the leadership/membership of the Faith find wrong in someone
> writing a critique of Baha'i Publishing and why why wold they victimize
that
> person for using their constitutional right to freedom of the press?
> What reason would they have for victimizing Cathy Freeman? If she did
> anything unethical while participating in the Olympics, it would have
caught
> the attention of the news media as well as the Baha'i leadership and I
> didn't hear anything negative in the news about her. I personally cannot
> subscribe to any of the allegations of victimization by the Baha'i Faith
>

From: FG <FG@hotmail.com>
Subject: fw KevinEco Reconsider the NO votes, please.
Date: Monday, December 14, 1998 6:53 AM

I wish to thank Kevin for presenting a very balanced rationale for
reconsidering Susan Maneck's call for NO votes against talk.religion.bahai.

Let me say, with all honesty, that my only reason for wanting an unmoderated
forum on the Bahai Faith is that Bahais might learn the importance of, and
live up to, Abdul-Baha's demanding words:

"These are effectual and sufficient proofs that the conscience of man is
sacred and to be respected; and that liberty thereof produces widening of
ideas, amendment of morals, improvement of conduct, disclosure of the
secrets of the contingent world."

Abdul-Baha, A Traveler's Narrative, 91.

FG....The Bahai Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience:
https://members.tripod.com/~FG/index.htm Talk.religion.bahai voter
ballot is on news.announce.newgroups, news.groups, alt.religion.bahai,
or email the votetaker dave@dogwood.com requesting the "trb CFV."


-------
Subject: Reconsider the NO votes, please.
Date: 12/12/1998 8:09 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: KevinEco
Message-id: <19981212200919.08230.00001915@ng-fc2.aol.com>

As the tempest grows wilder, any attempt to present a balanced view on this
subject appears more daunting, but now circumstances demand it.

To all of you, whether Baha'i or not, determined to vote NO on
talk.religion.bahai, please consider carefully the implications of your
decision.

Perhaps you reached this decision because you are annoyed with Fred
Glaysher, and you think a NO vote the perfect revenge because it will annoy
him.  Perhaps you are convinced he has bad motives, and you believe anything
that a person with bad motives will fight so hard to get must be a bad
thing.  Perhaps you don't have a clear idea of your own motives; whenever
that happens to me, I always find it wiser to refrain from acting until I
can clarify my
own motives.

Now, let's consider the worst-case possibility.  Suppose for a moment that
Fred really is a bad person with bad motives, perhaps even a
Covenant-breaker.  (Let me state in the strongest possible terms that this
is NOT my conviction about Fred; I am sorry to discuss such an accusation
even hypothetically, but sadly, the accusation has already been made public,
so it has to be dealt with.)

Even if this were true, even IF someone really does have destructive motives
and really is hatching some kind of nefarious plot, we must remember that IT
IS NOT OUR JOB TO SILENCE SUCH PEOPLE.

The Baha'i Writings tell us that to defend our religion, we are to speak the
truth about it when someone makes false accusations against it -- NOT to
compel such persons to be silent.

Leaving idealistic principle aside for a moment, let's get more practical.
Suppose the talk.religion.bahai proposal really is part of some fiendish
plot.  Perhaps the fiendish plot is actually calculated to goad as many
people as possible into voting NO, creating more evidence for the claim that
most Baha'is love nothing more than censorship.

Seem outlandish?  Yes, but if you read the exchanges on news.groups, you
will see messages from people who are non-Baha'is with no interest in Baha'i
matters, who are discussing this only because they follow discussion of
every proposed newsgroup.  Several such Usenet authority figures have
explicitly stated their temptation to vote NO simply because they find
Fred's tactics annoying.  If we indulge in speculating about motives, we
have to include
the possibility that this is no accident.

Returning to the level of principle (as the Baha'i teachings require of us)
none of us can claim anything other than speculation about the motives of
Fred or anyone else.

There may be tons of circumstantial evidence that someone has bad motives,
but the same evidence could also arise from a person who is extremely
devoted to a particular principle, and just doesn't have the talent or
charisma needed to inspire people's sympathy.  In neither case do the Baha'i
Writings give us any permission to attack such a person.  No, we have an
inescapable duty to treat all with love and respect.

For these reasons, let us all consider the following course of action:

1.  Please stop giving vent to negative emotions regarding Fred Glaysher.
Such venting will only drive him deeper into isolation, and as a creation of
God he deserves better.  If he really is trying to attack the Baha'i Faith,
such venting can only strengthen the attack.  Focus on issues and facts in
every response to him or about him, both for his sake, and for the sake of
adherence to correct principles.

2.  Please reconsider any NO vote on the talk.religion.bahai proposal.  If
you're still determined to annoy Fred (after all my efforts to stir your
compassion), consider that a large NO vote may be just what he's aiming for.
A better way to send a message would be an ABSTAIN vote, which would show
that you do not support the creation of talk.religion.bahai, but you are
unwilling to provide more ammunition to those who claim that Baha'is try to
censor everything.

3.  If you must vote no, please refrain from publicly stating your intention
to do so, and please refrain from campaigning for others to vote no.  Both
actions violate Usenet etiquette and will be interpreted as attempted
censorship by many neutral observers.

To anyone who is still reading this longish message, thank you for your
time.

If my attempt to present a balanced view of this tangled situation has
offended anyone, I offer my apologies, and hope you will be kind when you
point out my errors.

Your humble servant,
Kevin


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