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Naysan is the editor of Baha'i Blog and he has worked in various avenues of media for two decades. He’s passionate about using the arts and media to support and explore the teachings of the Baha’i Faith and he has produced and collaborated on popular music projects like the "DawnBreaker Collective" and the successful Ruhi-inspired sequence of "MANA" albums. His experience as a producer for CNN was invaluable while working on a number of special projects for the Baha’i World Centre, including the "Building Momentum" and "Pilgrimage: A Sacred Experience" videos. If there’s a media-related Baha’i project out there, chances are that Naysan was involved with it somehow!

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Baha’i Blogcast with Rainn Wilson – Episode 17: Mary & Clark

Hello and welcome to the Baha’i Blogcast with me your host, Rainn Wilson.

In this series of podcasts I interview members of the Baha’i Faith and friends from all over the world about their hearts, and minds, and souls, their spiritual journeys, what they’re interested in, and what makes them tick.

In this episode I’m in Toronto, Canada interviewing husband and wife Mary Darling and Clark Donnelly. Besides having more kids than I can ever keep track of, they have their own media company called WestWind Pictures, which aims to promote themes of beauty and unity. Among many other things, they are known for their popular TV comedy series called Little Mosque on the Prairie, and I ask them how the series started and what sort of impact the show has had. They share the challenges of working on a comedy that deals with things that are sacred, and how they bring Baha’i principles into the creative process. We discuss the importance of consultation, what it’s like working as a husband and wife team, the role of a producer, and how they each became Baha’is. They also share what books they’re reading, what they personally strive to be better at, and their favorite Baha’i Writings. Continue reading

“The Baha’is” – A Documentary by Mary Darling & Clark Donnelly

The Baha’is is a stunning introductory documentary about the Baha’i Faith produced by Canadian couple Mary Darling and Clark Donnelly. Known for their popular sitcom Little Mosque on the Prairie, Mary and Clark are the brains and heart behind Westwind Pictures, an independent production and distribution company with an emphasis on works that promote beauty and unity.

Originally aired in Canada on Vision TV, The Baha’is is now available for purchase from 9StarMedia and it’s an excellent way to explain some of the fundamental principles, the history, and the current activities of the Baha’i Faith.

Mary and Clark are really such a power-house of a couple and truly a joy to be around! They’ve also really been an inspiration for me personally when it comes to exploring the use of various forms of media and how they relate to the Baha’i Faith and its Teachings. I was able to spend a lot of time with them while on a recent trip to Toronto, Canada, and they agreed to do an interview with Baha’i Blog about this film.  Continue reading

Not Another Year – #‎ReleaseBahai7Now‬ – Glimpses of the Global Campaign

Baha’is around the world have joined the global “Not Another Year” campaign calling for the release of the seven Baha’i leaders imprisoned in Iran for nothing more than being a Baha’i.

We decided to share just a few examples of some of the many actions taken by Baha’is globally in an effort to bring awareness to their wrongful imprisonment.  Continue reading

The Last Time I Saw My Father – #ReleaseBahai7Now

The Last Time I Saw My Father is a video made as a part of the “Not Another Year” campaign, aimed to raise awareness of the nine year anniversary of the unjust imprisonment of the seven Baha’i leaders in Iran.

The video is based on a recent interview with Na’eem Tavakoli who talks about his father Behrouz Tavakoli, one of the seven imprisoned Baha’i leaders. Behrouz Tavakoli and other Baha’is are currently being held in Iranian prisons for nothing more than being a Baha’i. Mr. Tavakoli and six other Baha’i leaders have been in prison for the last 9 years.

For more information about the “Not Another Year” campaign and how you can support it, visit the Baha’i International Community’s website.

You can use the hashtag #‎ReleaseBahai7Now‬ for the campaign, and “Like” the campaign Facebook page hereContinue reading

Missing Years – #‎ReleaseBahai7Now

Missing Years is a video made as a part of the “Not Another Year” campaign, aimed to raise awareness of the nine year anniversary of the unjust imprisonment of the seven Baha’i leaders in Iran.

For the last nine years, seven Baha’i leaders are being held in Iranian prisons for nothing more than being a Baha’i.

For more information about the “Not Another Year” campaign and how you can support it, visit the Baha’i International Community’s website.

You can use the hashtag #‎ReleaseBahai7Now‬ for the campaign, and “Like” the campaign Facebook page hereContinue reading

Help Support Documentary about Afro-Iranian Musician Shanbezadeh

I am so excited to let everyone know about a new upcoming documentary being directed by Flavio Azm Rassekh, a Brazilian-Iranian Filmmaker. The documentary is about Afro-Iranian musician Saeid Shanbehzadeh, and through Shanbehzadeh’s experience as an Afro-Iranian, plus his friendship with Flavio, the film not only explores the connection between Afro-Iranian and Afro-Brazilian culture, but it also describes Shanbehzadeh’s first encounters with the Baha’i community, and demonstrates how over the years, like the population of Iran, his views on the Baha’is have changed. This story is a metaphor for the Iranian people’s re-discovery of the legacy and potential impact of the Baha’i Faith, and it deals with issues of prejudice and self-reflection. Continue reading

Baha’i Blogcast with Rainn Wilson – Episode 16: Maziar Bahari

Hello and welcome to the Baha’i Blogcast with me your host, Rainn Wilson.

In this series of podcasts I interview members of the Baha’i Faith and friends from all over the world about their hearts, and minds, and souls, their spiritual journeys, what they’re interested in, and what makes them tick.

In this episode I interview Maziar Bahari, an Iranian Canadian journalist, filmmaker and human rights activist who was imprisoned and tortured by the Iranian government for five months in 2009. After he was released, he wrote his memoir called Then They Came for Me, which became a New York Times bestseller and is the basis for Jon Stewart’s 2014 film Rosewater. In the conversation I ask him why, even though he is not a Baha’i, he has been actively campaigning for the rights of the Baha’is in Iran. We talk about his religious background; his thoughts on tyranny; why the situation for Baha’is in Iran is so important for the Iranian people as a whole, and how he went from being a journalist to being an activist. He shares what he learned from his experience in prison, and he also offers some personal advice to the Baha’i community, and a message to the people of Iran and the world. Continue reading

7 Valleys: An Album by Paloma Marin

Paloma Marin is a pianist, visual artist, and jeweler based out of Bogota, Colombia, and she’s recently released a beautiful instrumental piano album called 7 Valleys, which is inspired by Baha’u’llah’s mystic and poetic work, The Seven Valleys.

The sound engineer and producer of the album Daniel Badi Rinaldi, told me that when recording the album, they made sure the whole process was a spiritual one. Before recording, they both read all of The Seven Valleys.

I caught up with both Paloma Marin to find out more about her new album 7 Valleys: Continue reading

TED Talk with Siamak Hariri: How Do You Build a Sacred Space?

In this talk given at the TEDNYC Design Lab, Siamak Hariri shares how in order to design the Baha’i Temple of South America, he focused on illumination — from the temple’s form, which captures the movement of the sun throughout the day, to the iridescent, luminous stone and glass used to construct it. Join Hariri for a journey through the creative process, as he explores what makes for a sacred experience in a secular world. Continue reading

“Give Me Thy Grace” by Sara, Samira & Shayda

Baha’i Blog’s “Studio Sessions” is an initiative where we invite Baha’is and their friends from around the world to come into a studio and share the Baha’i Writings put to music.

In this Baha’i Blog Studio Session, we’re on Prince Edward Island, Canada, with Sara Chesley, Samira Eblaghi and Shayda Sobhani who sing “Give Me Thy Grace” from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha. Continue reading