Baha’i Blogcast with Rainn Wilson – Episode 66: Michael O’Neal

Hello and welcome to the Baha’i Blogcast with me your host, Rainn Wilson.

In this series of podcasts I interview members of the Baha’i Faith and friends from all over the world about their hearts, and minds, and souls, their spiritual journeys, what they’re interested in, and what makes them tick.

In this episode, I’m joined by my dear Baha’i friend, Michael O’Neal, the founder of ‘Parent University’, a community collaborative that supports families and encourages parent involvement and participation in the education of a community’s children and youth. Michael tells us how he became a Baha’i, what it was like growing up in a poor family, why grassroots initiatives are important, and why perseverance is a must. I’m sure you’ll enjoy this conversation as much I did!

To find out more about some of the things we covered in this episode, check out the following links:

* Find out more about Parent University here:

* The Universal House of Justice
* Shoghi Effendi
* Abdu’l-Baha
* The Bab
* Baha’u’llah

* An Introduction to The Seven Valleys

* An Introduction to The Four Valleys by Baha’u’llah

* Book: Theif in the Night by William Sears

* Seals & Crofts

* Book: The Book of Certitude (Kitab-i-Iqan)

* We refer to this quote by Shoghi Effendi found in The Advent of Divine Justice:

“As to racial prejudice, the corrosion of which, for well-nigh a century, has bitten into the fiber, and attacked the whole social structure of American society, it should be regarded as constituting the most vital and challenging issue confronting the Baha’i community at the present stage of its evolution. The ceaseless exertions which this issue of paramount importance calls for, the sacrifices it must impose, the care and vigilance it demands, the moral courage and fortitude it requires, the tact and sympathy it necessitates, invest this problem … with an urgency and importance that cannot be overestimated.”

* Why Cluster Reflection Meetings Are So Important

* Consultation: A Perspective

* The Baha’i Black Men’s Gathering

* Baha’i Blogcast with Rainn Wilson – Episode 56: William H. “Smitty” Smith

* We refer to this quote by Baha’u’llah:

“Regard man as a mine rich in gems of inestimable value. Education can, alone, cause it to reveal its treasures, and enable mankind to benefit therefrom. “

* Children’s Classes

* Study Circles and the Ruhi sequence of courses.

* The Importance of Service in the Baha’i Faith

* Thornton Chase

* We refer to this quote from a talk given by Abdu’l-Baha:
“Do not be content with showing friendship in words alone, let your heart burn with loving kindness for all who may cross your path.”

* Learn more about Abdu’l-Baha and the commemoration of the Centenary of His passing here: The Mystery of God

You can find all of our episodes here on the Baha’i Blogcast page, and be sure to ‘subscribe’ to the Baha’i Blogcast for more upcoming episodes on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify and Soundcloud.

Thanks for listening!

-Rainn Wilson

About the Author

Naysan is the editor of Baha'i Blog and he has worked in various avenues of media for two decades. He’s passionate about using the arts and media to support and explore the teachings of the Baha’i Faith and he has produced and collaborated on popular music projects like the "DawnBreaker Collective" and the successful Ruhi-inspired sequence of "MANA" albums. His experience as a producer for CNN was invaluable while working on a number of special projects for the Baha’i World Centre, including the "Building Momentum" and "Pilgrimage: A Sacred Experience" videos. If there’s a media-related Baha’i project out there, chances are that Naysan was involved with it somehow!

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