All posts by Iko Congo. Browse Other Authors

Iko Congo

Born and raised in the Azores (small Portuguese islands in the Atlantic), Iko had the opportunity to serve at the Baha'i World Centre for 20 months and is now studying Business Management in the UK, where he is also learning about the dynamics of community building. He cannot say 'no' to challenges and new opportunities. He is a staunch supporter of Sport Lisboa e Benfica's football team and a sunny beach is his only acceptable standard for a vacation.

An Introduction to ‘One Common Faith’

Introduction to One Common Faith 864x537

One Common Faith is a document commissioned in 2005 by the governing body of the Baha’i community, the Universal House of Justice. It follows an open letter sent three years earlier by the same institution to all the world’s religious leaders which called on them to reflect on the meaning and implications of the truth that the religion of God is one and reminded them of the danger of sectarian hatred.

By reviewing passages from both the Writings of Baha’u’llah and the scriptures of other faiths regarding the role of religion in relation to the conditions of contemporary society, One Common Faith provides profound insights about how religion affects the advancement of society.  Continue reading

The Tablets of the Divine Plan & Today

Photo: Courtesy of the Baha'i International Community

Photo: Courtesy of the Baha'i International Community

By reading the Tablets of the Divine Plan alongside recent messages of the Universal House of Justice, we can learn about what aspects of our current work trace their origin to these tablets revealed by Abdu’l-Baha 100 years ago. I encourage everyone to dive into these texts themselves and see what parallels they are able to make. Following are four points I was able to find:  Continue reading

A Personal Reflection on Social Action

Reading to children in Tiriki West, Kenya (Photo courtesy Baha'i World Centre)

Reading to children in Tiriki West, Kenya (Photo courtesy Baha'i World Centre)

In 2010 the Universal House of Justice called the Baha’is of the world to reflect on the contributions that their growing vibrant communities make to the material and spiritual progress of society and one of these contributions is social action. If we imagine the Baha’i community as a fire, social action is one of its properties: released heat.

The Baha’i community is striving to translate Baha’u’llah’s teachings into reality in order to contribute to world unity and collective spiritual and material prosperity. Baha’u’llah said: Continue reading

Exploring the Baha’i Concept of Life After Death

Baha'i Concept Life After Death

Religions are often perceived as a means to answer questions about what happens after we die. Will it be absolute non-existence after our body’s last breath? Is there life after death at all? And if there is, will we remember our life on this earth? Do we really go to heaven or hell?

Shoghi Effendi states:

Evolution in the life of the individual starts with the formation of the human embryo and passes through various stages, and even continues after death in another form.

In order to understand better the concept of life after death and what could be meant by “another form”, it can be helpful to start by looking at the reality of the human soul. Continue reading

The Baha’i Principle of Progressive Revelation

Progressive Revelation

One of the things we often get asked about as Baha’is is our conviction of the principle of the oneness of religion. As it is one of the central teachings laid down by Baha’u’llah, it is of great importance that we are able to understand the implications of seeing all religions, in essence, as being as one. This way we are able to answer common questions we are asked, such as, “How can all religions be true when they appear to disagree in the ways they are practised?” or, “Sure, different religions can get along, but clearly they advocate for different things, no?”

A response to these questions will be inherently based upon the concept of Progressive Revelation, a core concept that suggests that religious truth is, in essence, one, and that it is progressively revealed by God through a series of divine Messengers. Christ, Muhammad, Moses, Krishna, Baha’u’llah and the Bab are some examples of these Messengers that are like perfect mirrors that reflect and manifest the perfections and attributes of God and reveal His Word. Through the lens of Progressive Revelation we are able to clearly see how all the great religions of the world are divine in origin and regard their founders as divine Manifestations of God. Continue reading