June 18, 2023 will mark 40 years since 10 Baha’i women were hanged in Shiraz. Their only ‘crime’ was their refusal to renounce their beliefs in a faith that promotes the principles of gender equality, unity, justice, and truthfulness. This collection highlights Baha’i Blog content relating to the ongoing persecution of Baha’is in Iran.
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 interview Kevin Locke, which in Lakota is “Tokaheya Inajin” meaning “First to Rise”. Both Lakota and Anishnabe, Kevin is a Native American Baha’i who is a world famous visionary Hoop Dancer, preeminent player of the Indigenous Northern Plains flute, traditional storyteller, cultural ambassador, recording artist and educator with nearly 40 years of performing to over hundreds of thousands of people in over 90 countries. Living in Standing Rock, USA, Kevin talks to me about Lakota culture, some of their traditional prophecies and the power of women in their society. He tells me how he became a Baha’i, explains the power of engaging in the arts and connecting to the creator, and how the revelation of Baha’u’llah touches all the peoples of the earth, no matter what cultural background they come from, and how important it is for us learn from each other and about our collective heritage and so many other fascinating things. At the end of the conversation, Kevin shares with us a beautiful song on the flute called ‘The Eagle’s Flight’.
To find out more about Kevin Locke and some of the things we covered in the podcast, check out the following links:
* You can find out more about Kevin Locke from his website: KevinLocke.com
* Kevin mentions the book ‘God Passes By‘ by Shoghi Effendi, and quotes the following excerpt from the book:
“…While engulfed in tribulations I heard a most wondrous, a most sweet voice, calling above My head. Turning My face, I beheld a Maiden—the embodiment of the remembrance of the name of My Lord—suspended in the air before Me. So rejoiced was she in her very soul that her countenance shone with the ornament of the good-pleasure of God, and her cheeks glowed with the brightness of the All-Merciful…”
“These are, O my God, the days whereon Thou didst enjoin Thy servants to observe the fast. With it Thou didst adorn the preamble of the Book of Thy Laws revealed unto Thy creatures, and didst deck forth the Repositories of Thy commandments in the sight of all who are in Thy heaven and all who are on Thy earth. Thou hast endowed every hour of these days with a special virtue, inscrutable to all except Thee, Whose knowledge embraceth all created things. Thou hast, also, assigned unto every soul a portion of this virtue in accordance with the Tablet of Thy decree and the Scriptures of Thine irrevocable judgment. Every leaf of these Books and Scriptures Thou hast, moreover, allotted to each one of the peoples and kindreds of the earth.” -Baha’u’llah
* Kevin mentions an excerpt from the following prayer by Baha’u’llah:
“I am well aware, O my Lord, that I have been so carried away by the clear tokens of Thy loving-kindness, and so completely inebriated with the wine of Thine utterance, that whatever I behold I readily discover that it maketh Thee known unto me, and it remindeth me of Thy signs, and of Thy tokens, and of Thy testimonies. By Thy glory! Every time I lift up mine eyes unto Thy heaven, I call to mind Thy highness and Thy loftiness, and Thine incomparable glory and greatness; and every time I turn my gaze to Thine earth, I am made to recognize the evidences of Thy power and the tokens of Thy bounty. And when I behold the sea, I find that it speaketh to me of Thy majesty, and of the potency of Thy might, and of Thy sovereignty and Thy grandeur. And at whatever time I contemplate the mountains, I am led to discover the ensigns of Thy victory and the standards of Thine omnipotence…” -Baha’u’llah
* Kevin mentions excerpt from the following prayer by Abdu’l-Baha:
“O God! Educate these children. These children are the plants of Thine orchard, the flowers of Thy meadow, the roses of Thy garden. Let Thy rain fall upon them; let the Sun of Reality shine upon them with Thy love. Let Thy breeze refresh them in order that they may be trained, 36 grow and develop, and appear in the utmost beauty. Thou art the Giver. Thou art the Compassionate.” —Abdu’l-Baha
Naysan is passionate about using the arts and media to explore the teachings of the Baha’i Faith. Back in 2011, Naysan started up the Baha’i Blog project, channeling his experiences in both media and technology companies to help create a hub for Baha’i-inspired content online.
Kevin, your tale of the White Buffalo Calf Maiden and her Covenant was magically re-confirming for me, somehow reminding me that the Lakota wisdom in Black Elk Speaks was one of the many teachers leading me to the Baha’I Faith in Oregon in the mid-70s during a time of restless seeking. I sense the nobility of the eagle in you – especially in your flute song at the end of this interview. Yours is the sort of unifying moral / spiritual leadership that our troubled nation needs…and will eventually find…by the grace of the All-Merciful. I was also reminded, listening to this podcast, that I caught your Native American cultural show in Singapore while I was teaching English there in the ‘90s (you’d just come from a memorable visit to Laos, I recall) and had the good fortune of having a word with you backstage after your show. This was a fortuitous brief touch-in with an emissary of the Baha’I Faith that steadied me in looking for a way back in during my long years in the wilderness of self-imposed secular humanist “reconsideration”. I now sense that that touch-in somehow tied in with wise counsel received from a spiritually attuned academic in the late ‘80s to do with developing expanding circles of loyalty – circles well-symbolized by your hoop dance – and now manifest in my life in the core activities I have been involved in – first in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and now in Hungary, since I returned to the Baha’I Faith full-on four years ago. And thanks again to you, Rainn, for making these joyful, shamanic-tinged discussions available to all and sundry via this medium. Cheers!
Keith J. Taylor (February 2, 2019 at 3:25 AM)
The breath is a circle.
From Black Elk Speaks:
Everything the Power of the World does
is done in a circle.
The sky is round,
and I have heard that the earth is round like a ball,
and so are all the stars.
in its greatest power,
make their nests in circles,
for theirs is the same religion as ours.
and goes down again in a circle.
The moon does the same,
and both are round.
Even the seasons
form a great circle in their changing,
and always come back again
to where they were.
of a man is a circle
from childhood to childhood,
and so it is
where power moves.
https://www.amazon.com/Dream-Child-Hypothesis-Story-Self-ebook/dp/B07YMPWVK4/ref=sr_1_1? crid=1TOIFWAJRL8GD&keywords=the+dream+child+hypothesis&qid=1578282356&s=books&sprefi x=the+dream+child%2Caps%2C168&sr=1-1
Lee Bloomquist (January 1, 2020 at 2:59 PM)