Thousands upon thousands of Bahá’ís, embracing the diversity of the entire human family, are engaged in certain core activities. These activities promote the systematic study of the Bahá’í Writings in small groups in order to build capacity for service. They respond to the inmost longing of every heart to commune with its Maker by carrying out acts of collective worship in diverse settings, uniting with others in prayer, awakening spiritual susceptibilities, and shaping a pattern of life distinguished for its devotional character.
The rhythm of our Baha’i life — a home-devotional Monday nights at Amanda’s and Thursday night at Matt & Christy’s — rain or shine — and any other devotionals we can slip in in the course of the week. -gw
My taste in music has evolved. I want Baha’i-inspired, yes, but I want something post-punk/industrial, too. The solution — Radiant Devices, coming out momentarily with a brand new album. Here is their 2011 EP while we wait. -gw
CHICAGO POETRY: “»radiant devices« take to the stage and, wow! They use found objects, including a satellite dish, a chain, a gas tank, a big piece of sheet metal and a thick spring as musical instruments to compliment their off the wall, punk-rock poetry performance art. When I think of Mojdeh performing her poetry into a bullhorn I think of a female Jello Biafra.”
My homage to the variety of different hair styles, colors, textures that grace the heads of humans — my “Ode to Hair” set on Flickr — is approaching 3000 views. -gw
Glorified art Thou, O Lord my God! My tongue, both the tongue of my body and the tongue of my heart, my limbs and members, every pulsating vein within me, every hair of my head, all proclaim that Thou art God, and that there is none other God beside Thee. From everlasting Thou hast been immeasurably exalted above all similitudes and comparisons, and sanctified from whatsoever pertaineth to the creation Thou hast created and fashioned. From eternity Thou hast been alone, with none to share the majesty of Thy singleness, and hast remained far above the changes and chances to which all Thy creatures are subjected.
When parents are supported and valued by society, they are able to be fully present with their children, in turn helping to grow healthy brains. Children who grow up in an attuned caregiving environment are flexible, resilient, and empathic. In contrast, when children experience toxic stress, or stress in the absence of a safe, secure caregiving relationship, the parts of their brains responsible for emotional regulation do not develop normally. What results are symptoms that are then labeled “mental illness.”
Taráz took footage of our family on vacation last summer and turned it into something ethereal and moving. -gw
Dear friends! How vast a panorama these gemlike, these soul-searching divinely uttered pronouncements outspread before our eyes! What memories they evoke! How sublime the principles they inculcate! What hopes they engender! What apprehensions they excite! And yet how fragmentary must these above-quoted words, suited as they are to the immediate purpose of my theme, appear when compared with the torrential majesty which only the reading of the full text can disclose! He Who was God’s Vicar on earth, addressing, at the most critical moment when His Revelation was attaining its zenith, those who concentrated in their persons the splendor, the sovereignty, and the strength of earthly dominion, could certainly not subtract one jot or tittle from the weight and force which the presentation of so historic a Message demanded.
HAIFA, Israel — A documentary film about the efforts of Baha’i communities in four locations around the world has been released on the World Wide Web. The film, titled Frontiers of Learning, explores processes of community development under way in thousands of localities worldwide by presenting four case studies from four continents: the northern part of the Bolivar region in Colombia; the city of Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of the Congo; the city of Toronto, Canada; and the town of Bihar Sharif and surrounding areas in Bihar state, India. … Frontiers of Learning was first shown earlier this week at the 11th International Baha’i Convention. It is available to download and view online here.
A community garden is a … community. A place to hang-out, share stories, drink in the sun, and nurture relationships. God knows there are plenty of metaphors to draw on in such a place to turn an ordinary conversation into a spiritual conversation. There are 556 separate references within the Baha’i primary literature to “garden.” -gw
And when you pass by a garden wherein vegetable beds and plants, flowers and fragrant herbs are all combined so as to form a harmonious whole, this is an evidence that this plantation and this rose garden have been cultivated and arranged by the care of a perfect gardener, while when you see a garden in disorder, lacking arrangement and confused, this indicates that it has been deprived of the care of a skillful gardener, nay, rather, it is nothing but a mass of weeds. It has therefore been made evident that fellowship and harmony are indicative of the training by the real Educator, while separation and dispersion prove wildness and deprivation of Divine training.
Our first canoe paddle of this year came in May. Our first paddle of 2011 came in February. The difference? Ruhi Book 8. As much as Bonita loves the deep spiritual connections that she gets out in nature, she chose to spend Sundays from 9:30 to 1:30 studying the latest book in the Ruhi series with a dozen dear souls partaking of its spiritual sustenance. The study circle wrapped things up this month, having begun so many months ago in the depths of winter. Back to nature -gw