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Baha’i tools and resources

3 Clever Ways to Use Google Apps in Your Baha’i Community

Photo by Halilgokdal

Over the years, I’ve lived in a lot of different Baha’i communities and every one is different. My current community is especially interesting to me because it’s quite tech-savvy. In particular, we use Google’s Apps services to organize a variety of administration and activity. So I thought I would share some ideas on how to do this for your own community.

 

As you may know, Google offers a ton of different free services beyond its core search engine product. There’s a whole suite of products which are useful to Baha’i community administration and organization. In particular Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Sites. Here’s how you can use them: Continue reading

Where to Find Free Baha’i eBooks Online

"Kindle Birdies" photo by Sarowen

Thanks to the Kindle and iPad, paperless reading is becoming more and more common. Even without these devices it’s sometimes handy having an ebook on your laptop or PC. Thanks to Baha’i eBooks Publications you can get more than 70 Baha’i eBooks completely free in both ePub (iPad, iPhone, Android suitable) and Mobi (Kindle suitable) formats.

The project, which was started in late 2009 by a couple of Australians and an American, was created “to make the Bahá’í Writings more readily available to a world that is becoming ever more technologically advanced, by publishing them in formats that can be read on all electronic devices.”

Books available range from the Kitab-i-Aqdas to a compilation of the Ridvan messages from 1950 to 2011. There are even books in Spanish, German, French and Chinese – though the selections are much more limited at the moment.

New books and publications are being added all the time and you can get notified by following the site via Facebook, Email Updates, Twitter or RSS.

Visit Bahai eBooks Publications to Download Free Baha’i eBooks. And don’t forget also that if you are after a PDF or Word Doc of many of the Baha’i writings you can find them in the Baha’i Reference Library.

9 Service Project Ideas for You and Your Community

Baha'is of Wahiawa Adopt a Highway

While on holiday to Hawaii, I was driving down a highway on the island of Oahu and passed a sign for the “Adopt a Highway” program. The program is for local organizations and communities to keep their roads and areas clean and free of litter. I was really pleasantly surprised to see that this particular highway stretch had been adopted by the Baha’is of Wahiawa!

Rendering service to humanity is an important part of being not just a Baha’i, but a member of any religion and in fact pretty much any good moral code. But sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. Well here are nine simple ideas to get you thinking. I’d love to hear more ideas in the comments! Continue reading

The Resource Directory is Now Live!

Ba-bada-baaaa! Drum roll please!

Baha’i Blog is happy to announce the launch of our very own Resource Directory!

We want to build Baha’i Blog’s Resource Directory to be THE place you can find pretty much anything and everything Bahá’í related that exists online. Whether you’re looking for websites, videos, music, books, talks, apparel, organizations (and the list goes on) we  hope that the Directory will be the place where you can find what you need.

We’re always looking for more great Baha’i resources to share with our audience, so if you know of any we don’t yet have, then please let us know.

Happy resource hunting!

An Interview with Oneworld Publications

Co-founders of Oneworld Publications husband and wife team Novin Doostar and Juliet Mabey.

Oneworld is an independent publisher focusing on non-fiction and was founded in 1986 by husband and wife team Juliet Mabey and Novin Doostdar. Oneworld now publishes around sixty books a year and works with authors, literary agents and publishing partners around the world.

I decided to catch up with Oneworld co-founder Juliet Mabey to find out more about the work they’re doing to bring quality, consciousness-raising books to as many people around the world as possible.

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Designing the Faith: Print

There’s a small army of creative Baha’is who labour hard to communicate the message of the Faith on screen and paper. The Designing the Faith series showcases some of their ingenious work in film, fashion, the internet, architecture and more.

When you’re inviting your neighbour’s kid to a children’s class, Comic Sans on coloured paper won’t instill a sense of trust in their mum. Your charming smile may, but a well-designed invitation will give you an extra edge to communicate confidence, experience, and maybe even joy and creativity.

In the fourth part of our Designing the Faith series, we look at outstanding examples of color on paper.


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New Songs Available for Ruhi Book 3, Grade 1 & 2

The Ruhi Institute has made available for download, recordings of the songs contained in the new lesson plans for Grades 1 and 2 of the Teaching Children’s Class book.

These songs can be downloaded for free, and you can also download a page which contains both the lyrics and the chords for each song – so that’s pretty cool!

These materials can be used in both children’s classes and other educational activities, and The Ruhi Institute also permits the songs to be translated and recorded into various languages, provided that no recording be sold or used for commercial purposes in any way.

You can access the songs here: http://www.ruhi.org/resources/songs.php

5 Unique Baha’i Apps for Android

5 Unique Bahai Apps for AndroidSome time back, we published a post about 5 Unique Apps for the iPhone. For all the Android users among our readers – we haven’t forgotten about you! There are a number of really cool Baha’i apps for Android out there as well!

Here are 5 great Baha’i apps for the Android users out there. They’re all incredibly useful and, even better, free! Be sure to grab a copy and support our community of awesome Baha’i app developers.

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5 Year Plan Talks by Tom Price

Baha’i music composer Tom Price recently gave a series of three talks about the Five Year Plan at the Tennessee Baha’i School. With his permission, Baha’i Blog is pleased to share with you the talks to stream from our site or to download – and best of all, it’s completely free!

The study of the 5 Year Plan is something we’ve all been encouraged to do, and we hope these talks will help you with this. We know that anyone who has ever heard Tom Price speak will be frantically clicking away at the download buttons, and for those of you who have yet to tune in to one of Tom’s talks, you’re in for a treat!

We hope you enjoy the talks and please let us know what you think in the comments section and feel free to share this post with your friends.

Happy Listening! Continue reading

5 Easy Ways to Involve Children in Community Activities

Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Photo: Baha'i World Centre)

Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Photo: Baha’i World Centre)

In the 2000 Ridvan Message, the House of Justice said the following of children:

Children are the most precious treasure a community can possess, for in them are the promise and the guarantee of the future. Message from the Universal House of Justice (2000)

While reflecting on this quote recently, I was inspired to think of ways we could engage the children of our community more in our activities. These are some of the thoughts that came to mind. Some are from past experiences; others are from stories I’ve heard.

1. Change the time of events

Many families with young children often find it hard to attend evening programs. A simple change in the starting time of regular community events (e.g. 7 pm instead of 7:30 pm) can go a great way in encouraging participation of young families (and hence their children) in these events. I’ve seen, in a neighbouring community, how even just a 30-minute adjustment can make all the difference!

In addition to this, any Holy Days or Feasts that fall on a weekend could be held during the day where possible, perhaps with a barbeque, picnic or big spread of kid-friendly food and activities to celebrate.

Continue reading