The Baha'i Faith & Religious Freedom of Conscience

From: Kidnykid <kidnykid@aol.comspamfree>
Subject: Re: Interesting Conversations...
Date: Wednesday, February 24, 1999 1:04 AM
>The Faith as manifested in this country has always seemed
>unpleasantly similar to the old Communist Party U.S.A. (right down to "5
>year plans").  
Nice to note that someone else caught that similarity!
>severe lack of anything
>that met my spiritual needs
Once again, an opinion I share, even if we disagree about the existence (or
lack thereof) of a monotheistic Middle Eastern-derived concept of a Deity. I
happen to find this concept more satisfying than you do, but we both find the
Bahai faith a faith which nowhere near met our spiritual needs. I could not go
nineteen days between church services - and let's face it, the Feast is a
church service pure and simple.

>I had noticed early on the heavy authoritarianism in the
>faith, however well disguised under the rubric "Independent Search for the
In addition, I noticed an amazing similarity in the content of teaching from
teacher to teacher and fireside to fireside, almost as if someone were telling
these people what to say. Hardly a group of people who believe in independent
investigation of truth!
>The faith here seems amazingly stagnant.  I have had
>substantial contact with Muslims and even lived in the Middle East (both
>practices are unofficially forbidden to American Bahais).  I was struck at
>how similar the ideals of the enlightened and progressive Muslims are to the
>Bahais, but how much more vital and alive their faith is. 
Gotta agree here too, at least about the faith of those Muslims I have had the
privilege of being exposed to. The aggravating thing is that I have personally
met Bahais who are remarkably judgmental with regard to the faith of other
Bahais; someone might be a vital and wonderfully developed Bahai (I have known
one or two) with little or no book learning (that is, they do not know much or
anything about the sacred writings of the faith) but those with more knowledge
of said sacred writings but a relatively stagnant faith judge the others to be
less mature. 
Little wonder that I left. I feel that throwing the baby (God) out with the
bath water (a misguided faith with lots of wrongheaded believers) is a bad
idea; therefore, I am still a monotheist. But I choose not to be  a Bahai.
Robin Peters
One casualty - my wits, as in frightened out of.
Leonard McCoy, MD, ship's surgeon, USS Enterprise