I had the fortune of taking part in the 2022 World Conference which recently took place in Brisbane, Australia, and on the opening night of the conference, a short film was shown called A Deeper Calling: Reflections on the Transformative Power of Prayer. The film features five young people from Brisbane, and it shares their personal reflections of how prayer has affected their lives.
I found out that the film was created by my friend, Devina Saberi, who also happens to have taken part in some of our very first Baha’i Blog Studio Sessions (“Shine Ye” and “Sorrow Shall Pass“), and she agreed to publish the film on Baha’i Blog’s Youtube channel, and also answer some questions about the film. Here’s what she shared: Continue reading
Abdu’l-Baha: The Mystery is a new six-part documentary series about the life of Abdu’l-Baha, the eldest son of Baha’u’llah, the Prophet-Founder of the Baha’i Faith.
Produced by Fred Badiyan and Ramin Khadem in honour of the centenary of the ascension of Abdu’l-Baha, these six films cover the life of Abdu’l-Baha in chronological order, from His childhood and imprisonment, to His travels and ascension.
Fred Badiyan and Ramin Khadem have created many wonderful films relating to the Baha’i Faith such as the Hands of the Cause of God documentary series, and others such as Crossing Frontiers featuring the life of Ruhiyyih Khanum.
Baha’i Blog was given the Rights to distribute “Abdu’l-Baha: The Mystery” on our YouTube channel, and we are extremely grateful to Fred Badiyan and Ramin Khadem for honouring us with this privilege.
I got in touch with Fred Badiyan to find out more about this new documentary series about Abdu’l-Baha, and here’s what he shared: Continue reading
Guiding Compass is a new album of songs based on the Baha’i Writings and it comes from a group of friends based in the Box Hill suburb of Melbourne, Australia. The album is the result of an organic process of community service projects and activities over the span of more than 10 years in the neighborhood, and the friends involved have called themselves “1ness” (oneness). I got in touch with 1ness, namely Farzam Shabani, Louisa Kwan, Zheng Chen, Davis Takagi, Kenneth Kuo, and William, Mellisa and Charissa Soh, to find out more about the album. They decided to answer my questions collectively and here’s what they shared: Continue reading
As this year marks the 100th anniversary of the Passing of Abdu’l-Baha, we wanted to let you know about our special video made in His honor called ABDU’L-BAHA – Servant of Glory.
We typically interview artists and creators about their work and ask them what inspired them, what challenges they faced, and what words of encouragement they might offer others. I realized it would be really wonderful to pull back the veils and tell you a little bit about what goes into some of our own projects so in this interview I asked Naysan Naraqi, who produced ABDU’L-BAHA – Servant of Glory, to tell us more about the film. Continue reading
Author, Boris Handal, whom you may recognize from his previous books, Mirza Mihdi: The Purest Branch, and Varqa and Ruhu’llah: 101 Stories of Bravery on the Move, has just authored a new historical book called Trilogy of Consecration: The Courier, the Historian and the Missionary.
This book presents the lives of three personages closely related to the early years of the Baha’i Faith in Persia: Shaykh Salman, Nabil-i-A’zam and Mulla Sadiq.
Curious to find out more, here’s what Boris shared with us about his new book: Continue reading
As the teachings of the Baha’i Faith encourage everyone to serve others, many Baha’is choose to dedicate a year or more of their lives to full-time volunteering, whether it be by assisting with community-building efforts in a specific neighbourhood or village, or helping at a school, Baha’i temple, or even at the Baha’i World Centre in the Holy Land. This period of time is often referred to as a “year of service”.
My dear friend Nasim, a young Baha’i in Australia, decided to take a year off and spend it serving at the Baha’i World Centre in Haifa, Israel. When she returned to her home in Sydney, she decided to put a book together about her experiences. The book is called A Year of Blessings, and I caught up with Nasim to find out more about it:
Baha’i Blog: Hi Nasim! Can you tell us a little bit about the book and what it’s about?
This book is about my reflections on the spiritual blessings and transformative lessons I experienced during my year of service in the Holy Land (Haifa, Israel) back in 2018-2019. It shares glimpses of the beautiful, sacrificial and rewarding experience of devoting a full year serving at the Baha’i World Centre, and how it strengthened my love, certitude, and devotion to our Beloved Cause. In the book, I share stories about how tests (a.k.a. blessings in disguise) helped me grow and strengthen many spiritual qualities such as patience, resilience, love, wisdom, and steadfastness, to name a few. The book features full-page photographs of Baha’i Holy Places that I had the chance to photograph in the cities of Haifa, Akka, and in Bahji, as well as a compilation of quotations from the Baha’i Writings that inspired me. I hope these will also inspire the readers and encourage them to ponder their meaning as they continue serving in their respective fields.
The 2021 National NAIDOC logo ‘Care for Country’ was designed by Gubbi Gubbi artist Maggie-Jean Douglas.
This week across Australia, we celebrate what’s called NAIDOC Week, a week where every year in July, Australians from all walks of life celebrate and honor the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Now, I’m not an Aboriginal or a Torres Strait Islander myself. I moved to Australia about 12 years ago and decided to make it my home and apply for Australian citizenship. I recently sat my Australian citizenship test, which presented a few interesting questions relating to the Indigenous peoples of this land. The test really got me thinking about the First Nations peoples of Australia, and how, after living in Australia for over a decade, my knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures — I’m embarrassed to say — still remains extremely limited. Sure, I could say that I’ve watched movies like Rabbit Proof Fence, and that “I have some Aboriginal friends,” but honestly, other than a few facts here and there, I know absolutely nothing about the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. I guess with NAIDOC Week happening, and because of my Australian Citizenship test, it really hit me: I love this country and want to be a contributing member of its society, but how can I truly call Australia my home when I know so little about the original inhabitants of this land? Continue reading
Crossing Frontiers is a documentary on the life of Hand of the Cause of God Amatu’l-Baha Ruhiyyih Khanum, who was also the wife of Shoghi Effendi. The film explores the frontiers Ruhiyyih Khanum had crossed in her travels to over 185 countries, where she gave countless lectures, met many leading dignitaries, and was interviewed by the press throughout the world, continually promoting the essential teachings of the Baha’i Faith.
Produced by Badiyan Productions in 1997, Baha’i Blog was graciously given the rights to publish Crossing Frontiers on our YouTube channel, and this historical gem of a documentary offers rare footage and interviews with Hand of the Cause of God Amatu’l-Baha Ruhiyyih Khanum.
Badiyan Productions are also known for their wonderful The Hands of the Cause documentary series, and Fred Badiyan of Badiyan Productions also happens to be my great uncle. His life of dedicated service to the Baha’i Faith through the medium of film and media had a profound impact on me personally, and it has served as an inspiration and catalyst in my personal pursuit of using media to serve the Faith. I caught up with Fred Badiyan to find out more about this film, and here’s what he shared: Continue reading
The Sign of Love is the beautiful new album by New Zealand singer/songwriter, Grant Hindin Miller. Grant has already released several albums over the years, and his songs are loved by so many around the world.
Grant’s ability to tell stories through his music is amazing. I remember the first time I heard one of Grant Hindin Miller’s songs some 20+ years ago while I was in New Zealand. A friend played me “Nine Lighted Candles“, a song about Sulayman Khan Tabrizi, one of the followers of the Bab who was publicly tortured and killed. Halfway through the song, tears were streaming down my face; Grant’s ability to captivate the listener as the story unfolds, combined with his beautiful melodies, is an absolute work of art.
Grant Hindin Miller has also written three feature films, three books, a stage-musical, and teaches creative writing. I’ve been blessed to have gotten to know him over the years, and he recorded “O Son of Dust” and “Humble Thyself” for Baha’i Blog’s Studio Sessions series. I also interviewed Grant for the Ink of Light Writers’ festival. When I heard about his new album, I had to reach out to find out more and share it with the world: Continue reading
Another World is a poignant and thoughtful short film about how children are coming of age at a time when humanity is also struggling to come to maturity. The film is based on a poem by Esther Maloney and between June and December 2020, she, along with a small team of creators from Winnipeg, Toronto and New York, regularly met and brought the poem to cinematic life. Continue reading