It’s exciting to see more and more Baha’i-inspired podcasts being produced by writers, musicians, thinkers and artists. I’m particularly delighted that Jacqueline Claire (you may know her from her art or her interactive art talks) has created a podcast series called Spiritual Conversation. She’s an engaging story teller who tackles elevated topics thoughtfully, honestly and joyfully — you can even hear her mega-watt smile streaming through your headphones!
Jacqueline reached out to tell us about her podcast and about the work, the ideas, the hopes and the dreams that go on behind-the-scenes. Here’s what she shared with us:
The gardens surrounding the Shrines of the Bab and Baha’u’llah in Israel are open to the public at designated times and they are visited by more than one million guests every year! In 2008, these unique structures and gardens were inscribed on the UNESCO’s World Heritage List in recognition of their “outstanding universal value” as holy places and places of pilgrimage for followers of the Baha’i Faith.
As a precautionary measure and in compliance with health regulations regarding the coronavirus, the Shrines and their surrounding gardens have been closed. However, www.ganbahai.org.il, which is the official public website for visitor information to these holy places has just launched a new gallery of images and videos, including historical ones, so you can visit these special places from home. You can see them all here: http://gallery.ganbahai.org.il/
I have always found it interesting how there are some emotions that we think we can avoid feeling—even though history and experience consistently demonstrate otherwise. We are happy to fully embrace the joyful moments—the successful interviews, promotions and scientific breakthroughs; finding true love, marriages, births and anniversaries. And yet we all know that for every joyful, celebratory experience there are undoubtedly many hours of sacrifice, failure, loss and grief, and that we wouldn’t appreciate the moments of happiness and contentment nearly as acutely without the periods of struggle and pain that preceded them. Continue reading
We’ve seen a diverse flourishing of online Baha’i-inspired initiatives in recent days and weeks as more and more people self-isolate due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. As Baha’is and their friends around the world celebrate the 12 days of Ridvan in creative ways that are in keeping with the recommendations of health authorities, we’re especially excited to share two awesome initiatives which are taking place each of the 12 days of Ridvan to celebrate the whole Festival online. Continue reading
The Universal House of Justice has just addressed the Baha’is of the world with the latest Ridvan message.
Each year during the Festival of Ridvan, the Universal House of Justice addresses a letter to the worldwide Baha’i community, known as the Ridvan message. These letters touch on many subjects, including the growth and vibrancy of the Baha’i community, its efforts to contribute to the life of society, and the progress of specific projects and plans. This messages follows closely the Naw-Ruz 177 letter from the Universal House of Justice and both address the current world health crisis and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Continue reading
Two dear friends of mine, Edit Kalman, a photographer, and Tom Mann, a graphic designer, have teamed up to create a special compilation of the Baha’i Writings in light of the exceptional circumstances the people of the world find themselves in right now with the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, but also to be used, and inspiration derived from it, at any time.
Edit and Tom have created a compilation in both English and Hungarian, and have made it available for free download by anyone who would like to use it. You can download it here.
I was excited to touch base with Edit and Tom to learn more about this touching initiative, and here’s what they shared with me:
Baha’i Blog: Hi Edit and Tom! Can you first tell us a little bit about this initiative?
Well, we wanted to distribute, in a non-printed format, a set of positive Baha’i Writings that address some of the current issues we are facing right now in relation to the global health crisis.
As humanity is facing heavy challenges and the light of unity is shining more brightly, we have created a compilation as a gift to those souls who are searching for answers, solace and love today. Please feel free to share the booklet with your friends and loved ones. Continue reading
The team at BahaiTeachings.org has just launched a new initiative called Light Up the World. This website, lightuptheworld.org, is a devotional space for everyone, regardless of their beliefs, to offer prayers and positive thoughts of peace and healing as the world continues to suffer from the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Continue reading
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way many parts of the world do things. Perhaps the most profound shift has been due to the recommendations of governments for their citizens to stay in their homes whenever possible, and to reduce physical interactions in order to slow the spread of the virus.
For many Baha’is across the world, this has meant changing many activities such as holy day celebrations, Nineteen Day Feasts, children’s classes, study circles, devotional gatherings and Junior Youth Spiritual Empowerment Programs from in-person meetings to virtual meetings. Fortunately, there are a number of readily available applications that can be used to keep communities, neighborhoods, families and friends connected through live video calls. In this Baha’i Blog post, I will briefly review seven such applications that you might find helpful: Continue reading
As the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic put the world at a standstill, it seems like life was paused in order to allow us some time to reflect on the current conditions of the world and to reevaluate what is important to us. Even though this time is very challenging, it is also rich in opportunities that we are yet to discover. As a Baha’i, I try to make sense of this uncertain time by looking at it through the lens of spiritual and historical perspectives. Continue reading
With all that’s been unfolding with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) around the world, we thought we’d put together a short list of 12 Baha’i or Baha’i-inspired recourses that have been created in response to the COVID-19 pandemic so far. These resources range from the most recent message from the Universal House of Justice, to news and travel updates to the Baha’i World Centre, to an episode of the Baha’i Blogcast with Rainn Wilson featuring epidemiologist Dr. Robert Kim-Farley. It also includes a number of articles which share personal viewpoints and musings on the current global health crisis as seen through the lens of the principles of the Baha’i Faith. We hope that you find these interesting and useful. Continue reading