Over two years ago we launched Baha’i Blog’s YouTube channel, where we set out to create our very own original Baha’i-inspired video content. Now, about 200 videos later, we have a variety of content to offer, including informative animations like our What are Devotional Gatherings?, our popular music series called Studio Sessions, Baha’i-inspired talks, our short film series on creatives called The Art Of…, and the funny What’s That Word? series aimed at junior youth.
We are excited to be a part of the steadily growing ecosystem of Baha’i-inspired video content online, and we also contribute to this ecosystem by helping and collaborating with others to make specific videos such as the The Last Time I Saw My Father and the short film Switch.
We’ve been trying to reach 10,000 subscribers on our YouTube channel, and we’re almost there, but could really use your help to get us across the line! YouTube has studios located in different parts of the world, and if we have over 10,000 subscribers, we can gain access to them and hopefully use them for some of our future initiatives, so if you can take a few seconds to help us make this happen by clicking here to SUBSCRIBE, we’d really appreciate it! We’d also be very grateful if you could help us spread the word and ask everyone you know who likes Baha’i Blog to help us achieve this goal too!
So now that that’s out of the way (and thank you so much for helping out with that!) let’s get on with counting down our 10 most popular YouTube videos of the year, from Naw-Ruz 2017 to Naw-Ruz 2018, starting with number one:
In this short two minute animation, we present a brief introduction to the Baha’i Faith. This was our very first video when we launched the YouTube channel, and it was created in collaboration with a couple of good friends of mine, Kishan and Vidad. YouTube is the number two website in the world, and when searching for the Baha’i Faith on YouTube, the search results were really disappointing, and we felt there was a need to fill this void. The entire process took us about six months, and as with all of our content, we put a lot of time and effort into consulting about how best to write the script and present the ideas. One of the things you may notice is that we intentionally did not use a North American or British accent as the voice-over (a common trait of many explainer videos nowadays), and instead used Vidad, who’s originally from Malaysia, to do the voiceover. We are also working with other National Spriritual Assemblies now to recreate the animation in other languages, like this version in German.
This hauntingly beautiful song by Calla Kinglit is a part of Baha’i Blog’s very popular weekly music series called Studio Sessions, an initiative where we invite Baha’is and their friends around the world, to come into a studio to film and record a song based on the Baha’i Writings.
This song is based on the Writings of the Bab, and was filmed and recorded in Toronto, Canada in August, 2015. Calla is currently working on her debut album, which we’ll be interviewing her about on Baha’i Blog when it’s released.
In this Baha’i Blog Studio Session, brothers Denzil and Ephrim Aumua sing “The Fire”, based on an excerpt from a Tablet by Abdu’l-Baha. The song was filmed and recorded at music legend Louie Shelton’s home studio in the Gold Coast, Australia, July 2015. Here is the quote by Abdu’l-Baha used for the lyrics: “O thou lamp who art enkindled with the fire of the Love of God! Verily, I read thy recent letter which showed thy strong love, thy being ablaze with the fire of the love of thy Lord, the Mighty, the Praised, and the penetration of the Spirit of Truth in thy limbs, nerves, veins, arteries, bones, blood and flesh, until it hath taken the reins of power from thy hands and moveth thee as it willeth, causeth thee to speak in what it willeth and attracteth thee as it willeth. This is becoming of whatever heart is replenished with the spirit of the love of God. Thou shalt surely behold wondrous traces and shalt discover the signs of thy Mighty Lord.”
In this Baha’i Blog Studio Session, Sam, Tevita and Sione Cocker, three brothers originally from Tonga and living in Australia, sing the “Unity Prayer” based on a prayer by Baha’u’llah. This song was filmed and recorded in Brisbane, Australia, February 2016, and you can also listen to and download the audio version of this song from Baha’i Blog’s Soundcloud page here.
This wonderful group of youth who called themselves “JYSEP Goodna” are engaged in a variety of social action initiatives in the Goodna area of Queensland, Australia, and they came into the studio to sing “At All Times”, based on an excerpt from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha. This song was one of our top 10 audio tracks of the year, and it was filmed and recorded in Brisbane, Australia, February 2016. You can also listen to and download the audio version of this song from Baha’i Blog’s Soundcloud page here.
In this Baha’i Blog Studio Session filmed and recorded in Paget, Bermuda, Christina Frith, Julia Frith and Jeffrey Marshall sing “Ya Baha”. In Islam there is a tradition that among the many names of God, one was the greatest; however, the identity of this Greatest Name was hidden. Baha’u’llah has confirmed that the Greatest Name is “Baha”, and the lyrics of this song are in Arabic, and are based on invocations using some of the Names of God: “Ya Baha’u’l-Abha, Ya Aliyyu’l-Ala, Ya Sahibu’z-Zaman” meaning “O Thou the Glory of the Most Glorious, O Thou the Exalted, the Most Exalted, O Lord of the Age”.
In this Baha’i Blog Studio Session, Meredith & Arman sing “O Son of Spirit”, based on one of the Hidden Words of Baha’u’llah: “O SON OF SPIRIT! Noble have I created thee, yet thou hast abased thyself. Rise then unto that for which thou wast created.” This song was filmed and recorded at the SoulPancake studio in Los Angeles, USA, and you can also listen to and download the audio version of this song from Baha’i Blog’s Soundcloud page here.
Once again brothers Denzil and Ephrim Aumua share a song in our Studio Sessions series called “He May Soar”, based on a prayer by Abdu’l-Baha. This song was also filmed and recorded at Louie Shelton’s home studio in the Gold Coast, Australia, in July 2015. You can listen to and download the audio recording of this song from Baha’i Blog’s Soundcloud page here.
In this Baha’i Blog Studio Session, Max Weigert sings “Be Happy” based on an excerpt from a talk by Abdu’l-Baha. Originally from the United States, Max was studying music in Valencia, Spain when I was in Madrid organizing the filming of Studio Sessions there. I had recently interviewed Max on Baha’i Blog about his album, and when he found out we were going to record some Studio Sessions, he agreed to jump on a train and come to Madrid to participate, and it couldn’t have worked out better!
In this Baha’i Blog Studio Session, we’re in Vancouver, Canada with Naseem Bahraini, Michele Jubilee Davey-Hatcher and Yasmin Vahedi who sing “O Son of Spirit”, based on one of the Hidden Words of Baha’u’llah: “O SON OF SPIRIT! Noble have I created thee, yet thou hast abased thyself. Rise then unto that for which thou wast created.”
Well, that’s the top 10 list of our most popular YouTube videos of the year, and we hope you’ve enjoyed Baha’i Blog’s YouTube channel so far!
Once again, we’d love it if you could show your support by signing up to Baha’i Blog’s email list to receive updates of great new Baha’i Blog content, and by clicking here to subscribe to our YouTube channel.
Thank you again for all your continued support and encouragement!