The Baha'i Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience

From: Dale Grider <>
Subject: Re: Bahai Fireside,  CHRISTIAN response and rebuttal
Date: Friday, August 06, 1999 8:30 PM
    I find Pat's 2 responses to the post I made indicating the Fireside
Letters and the Grolin response very entertaining. In the first one Pat
blasts me for using Townshend as if he were a manifestation. I didn't. I
only said that his material accurately represents the Baha'i outlook and
is very popularly used by Bahai' s. Evidently Baha'is can use sources
like Townshend to argue the Baha'i position, but if I do so it is an
automatically invalid distortion of that position.   Hmm Pat. You need
to think that one through.
    What was interesting was that in the second response in this thread
Pat seems to accuse me of not being very thorough for not citing and
reflecting upon the work of Sears! After reading Pat's first critical
response one can imagine that I am in a no win situation with brother
Pat!. If I cite Townsend it is the invalid use of a non authoritative
author. If I fail to cite such an author on the other hand (such as
Sears) then my treatment is incomplete.
Pat says,
"I should like to read Dale's analysis of "Thief in the Night" as I
expect it to be addressed in an exhaustive treatment of the topic."
So now my treatment is not "exhaustive" by way of failing to cite the
works of exactly the sort of author he blasted me for using in my
citation of Townshend!
    In fact, the Fireside Letters does quote and consider Sears'
position from his book entitled, The Wine of Astonishment, which, like
Townshend's works, accurately represents Baha'i principles with examples
that end up helping reveal the fallacy of the basic Baha'i theological
apologetic with respect to the Bible and Christian theology.
    Will Pat consider such usage as the blasphemous inclusion of non
authoritative material...or my thoroughness in covering the topic? We'll
have to wait and see?