Tag Archives devotional gatherings

Message from the Universal House of Justice for Naw-Ruz 177 BE

The Universal House of Justice has just released a letter to the Baha’is of the world on the occasion of Naw-Ruz and the beginning of the Baha’i new year 177 BE.

The letter is included in full below. You can read it online, or download it, here from the Baha’i Reference Library.

You can also listen to an audio recording of the message here on Baha’i Blog’s YouTube channel: Naw-Ruz 177 Message from the Universal House of Justice

And you can listen to and download the audio recording from our Soundcloud page: Naw-Ruz 177 Message from the Universal House of Justice

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My Home of Peace and the Devotional Character of My Neighborhood

I have a 450-square foot studio apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. My bed folds into a discrete cabinet against the wall, and my sink is always full of dishes. I have a tuxedo cat named Emma who doesn’t like anyone except me and has scratched up the ends of my armchair and leaves fuzz and hair wherever she sits. She tracks small pieces of litter across the apartment. My coffee table is covered with plastic bottles, coasters, leftover takeout containers, and graded papers. Working sixty to seventy hours a week, I roll in and out, often too tired to even put my clothes or shoes away in the right place, leaving them instead to hang out in piles on the floor or over my barstools. 

On Fridays, I hurry home from work, turn on bad reality television (Hell’s Kitchen mostly) whilst drinking a frappuccino, and start vacuuming. I sweep up all the white and black cat hairs, and vacuum them out of the sofa and throw pillows. I mop until the floors smell like lemon, sweep and wipe down the bathroom, throw my trash out, put away my recyclables, and finally fold my clothes or put them in the laundry. I take off all the extra things from my coffee table, light a candle, put a record on the turntable, turn on my string lights, change out of my work clothes, and wait for the first guest to arrive.  Continue reading

Extra Features to ‘A Widening Embrace’: 3 New Short Films

Photo courtesy of the Baha'i International Community

The Baha’i World Centre has announced the release of three new short films, companion pieces to A Widening Embrace, an innovative documentary film commissioned by the Universal House of Justice about the community-building efforts of the Baha’i world, as seen through the eyes of local populations. The three films are titled Nurturing Younger Generation, Exploring the Empowerment of Junior Youth, and Communities Learning to Advance Together. Their total running time is approximately 32 minutes.  Continue reading

Help Us Produce More Baha’i Blog Studio Sessions Around the World!

Many of you by now have hopefully seen our series called “Studio Sessions”, where we invite Baha’is and their friends from around the world into a studio to film and record them singing a song based on the Baha’i Writings. We then make these videos and recordings available on our Baha’i Blog YouTube Channel and SoundCloud page for everyone to listen to and download for FREE. (If you haven’t heard of Studio Sessions yet, you can find out more about it from this article), or by reading on.

In a letter from the Universal House of Justice to all National Spiritual Assemblies dated 12 December, 2011, the House of Justice stated:

We long to see, for instance, the emergence of captivating songs from every part of the world, in every language, that will impress upon the consciousness of the young the profound concepts enshrined in the Baha’i teachings.

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A Nightingale’s Cry: A New Album by Mea

A couple of years ago, Baha’i Blog featured a great Baha’i-inspired musical initiative out of Finland called Refuge, and now one of the participants of that initiative, Mea Karvonen, has just released her very own debut album entitled A Nightingale’s Cry.

A Nightingale’s Cry is an instrumental album of piano pieces inspired by the Baha’i Faith, and the tracks comprise of both original pieces composed by Mea, and also ones inspired by songs composed by other Baha’i musicians such as Tom Price, Jean Rebstock Murday and others which have touched her in one way or another, like the piece called Grace & Favor, based on an Iranian Baha’i song she’s been singing since she was a child. Additionally, Mea has also included a download of the sheet music to these songs as well, which is always great!

I recently caught up with Mea to find out more about her music and her debut album: Continue reading