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Sonjel Vreeland

In her innermost heart, Sonjel is a mother, a wife and a bookworm but professionally she is a museologist and a library technician. She currently lives on Prince Edward Island, an isle in the shape of a smile on the eastern Canadian coast. Sonjel is a writer who loves to listen to jazz when she's driving at night.

Interview with Dr. Moojan Momen About the Afnan Library Trust (UK)

Dr. Moojan Momen at the doors of the Afnan Library. Photo: Courtesy of Immersed Photography

The events of Baha’i history are so close to us that we can easily be connected to those early heroic days–Rainn Wilson wrote about meeting a person who had met Baha’u’llah! I am fascinated by our history and how we are recording, capturing and preserving it for future generations. When I came across the Afnan Library Trust’s Facebook page and saw a photograph I had never seen before of the Greatest Holy Leaf, I was delighted and thrilled and I wanted to share some of that excitement with you (as well as the photograph, which can be seen below!). In this interview, Dr Moojan Momen, one of the Trustees of the Afnan Library, shares a little bit about this extraordinary institution:

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A Tribute to Hasan Balyuzi

Hand of the Cause of God Hasan Muvaqqar Balyuzi (7 September 1908-12 February 1980) Photo: Courtesy of the Baha'i International Community

When I was a graduate student completing an internship in London, I visited the resting place of Shoghi Effendi to offer some prayers. It was a beautiful summer’s day and I had the luxury of time so I walked around New Southgate Cemetery and prayed at the graves of other Baha’is whose names I recognized, such as Hasan Balyuzi. I knew little of the spiritual giant he was and now, having caught a glimpse by reading about him in The Baha’i World, I feel in awe of his literary and scholarly greatness, of his ceaseless efforts to promote the teachings of the Baha’i Faith, and of his undying love for Baha’u’llah’s Revelation. On 12 February, 1980 the Universal House of Justice cabled the Baha’is of the world the following:

With broken hearts announce passing dearly loved Hand Cause Hasan Balyuzi. Entire Baha’i world robbed one of its most powerful defenders most resourceful historians. His illustrious lineage his devoted labours divine vineyard his outstanding literary works combine in immortalizing his honoured name in annals beloved Faith. Call on friends everywhere hold memorial gatherings. Praying Shrines his exemplary achievements his steadfastness patience humility his outstanding scholarly pursuits will inspire many devoted workers among rising generations follow his glorious footsteps.

I wanted to share a few details of his life, and if you’d like to read more I’d definitely recommend you find Volume XVIII of The Baha’i WorldContinue reading

Panel: “Creating a Society Founded on Divine Principles”

In this panel discussion titled “Creating a Society Founded on Divine Principles” Dr. Payam Akhavan, Leila Rassekh Milani, Jamey Heath and Erica Toussaint-Brock share their thoughts on how we apply spiritual principles to the building of civilization. The conversation was moderated by Mona Mahmoudi and was one of the sessions at the December 2017 Grand Canyon Baha’i Conference (USA).  Continue reading

Panel: “Creating a Society Founded on Divine Principles” [Audio]

In this panel discussion titled “Creating a Society Founded on Divine Principles” Dr. Payam Akhavan, Leila Rassekh Milani, Jamey Heath and Erica Toussaint-Brock share their thoughts on how we apply spiritual principles to the building of civilization. The conversation was moderated by Mona Mahmoudi and was one of the sessions at the December 2017 Grand Canyon Baha’i Conference (USA).  Continue reading

‘Remember My Days’: A New Album by Corinne Padilla McLoughlin

It’s been incredible to witness a flourishing of artistic expressions celebrating the Bicentenary anniversary of the Birth of Baha’u’llah. Corinne Padilla McLoughlin has produced an album entitled Remember My Days. The tracks incorporate elements from various genres including jazz, blues, folk, classical, rock and world music and each song is a heartfelt tribute to Baha’u’llah.

We love to hear how albums come together and Corinne happily shared the learning process and creativity behind Remember My DaysContinue reading

The Web’s Most Joyful Place: SoulPancake | Shabnam Mogharabi

In this talk, produced by Bahaiteachings.orgSoulPancake CEO Shabnam Mogharabi says “Joy is one of the most powerful, overlooked forces on the planet for creating change.” She shares how SoulPancake creates uplifting social media content to change the future, how she believes that SoulPancake’s mission, and the Baha’i teachings about joy, have changed her. Continue reading