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“Oración de Curación” by Mario Cesar Santillana

Oración Para La Curación - Mario Cesar Santillana 864x486

Baha’i Blog’s “Studio Sessions” is an initiative where we invite Baha’is 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, Mario Cesar Santillana sings “Oración de Curación”, based on a prayer for healing by Baha’u’llah.

You can also download the audio version of this song from Baha’i Blog’s Soundcloud page here: Continue reading

4 Reasons Accompaniment is So Important

Participants of a Study Circle in Battambang, Cambodia (Photo: Baha'i World Centre)

Participants of a Study Circle in Battambang, Cambodia (Photo: Baha'i World Centre)

The word “accompaniment” has become a quintessential part of Baha’i “jargon”. As the Universal House of Justice wrote in their 2010 Ridvan Message, “the growing frequency with which the word ‘accompany’ appears in conversations among the friends” is in fact a sign of the evolution of a collective consciousness emerging among the Friends. Accompaniment is, as the House writes, “a word that is being endowed with new meaning as it is integrated into the common vocabulary of the Baha’i community” and signifies no less than the strengthening of a culture that fosters the participation of more and more people in a united effort to apply Baha’u’llah’s teachings to the construction of a divine civilization.

Accompaniment, like everything in the Baha’i Faith, is a concept that needs to be translated into action if it is to have any effect in achieving the vision described by Baha’u’llah and laid out by the Universal House of Justice.

What then can accompaniment look like as we advance from merely talking about it to carrying it out? Continue reading

Universal Participation: A Short Story

Universal participation

Universal Participation tells the story of Haji Amin, an eminent believer during the time of Baha’u’llah, and his experience collecting an important donation.

Universal participation does not mean that the sum of a donation is important, instead it is the amount of sacrifice with which each donation is given that counts.

You can learn more about the Baha’i Funds by reading Baha’i Blog’s article here: The Baha’i Funds an Introduction.

Eleven – A New Book by Paul Hanley

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A friend of mine in Australia told me how he had read a book which had such a profound impact on him, and in fact he felt was so important for everyone to read, that he bought dozens of copies of it to give to all of his staff. That book was Eleven, by Paul Hanley.

Critically acclaimed as “the read of our times”, the author of Life of Pi Yann Martel said “Every concerned citizen of this planet needs to read this book.”.

Paul Hanley’s Eleven “…is an inspired map of the road ahead, drawn in lines of truth we turn our gaze away from every day. More than that, though, this sweeping book makes an audacious but coherent and thoroughly-researched case for the possibility that, by awakening to the reality of what we are doing to the earth and our own souls, we may already be getting ready to walk the road with our ‘better angels of our nature’ fully in charge.

I had the fortune of meeting Paul Hanley at the recent 2015 Association for Baha’i Studies Conference in Orange County, California, where he was the recipient of the 2015 Award for Distinguished Scholarship in the Book Category.

Paul Hanley agreed to do an interview with Baha’i Blog: Continue reading

6 Examples of Baha’i-Inspired Tattoos


I’ve always thought tattoos were amazing. How do you choose a symbol or message when it’s going to be permanently with you? While I’ve never been brave enough to get one, I often think that my faith is one thing that is sufficiently timeless to be permanently inscribed. But do Baha’is get tattoos? Is it allowed, and what do they choose? I set out to find some guidance and examples!

Guidance on Tattooing

As you might imagine, I’m not the first person to wonder about the Baha’i view on tattoos. In response to a letter in 2003, the Baha’i World Centre issued this guidance Continue reading

The Almost Hip Religion – Western Ideals Meet Baha’i Teachings

Children in a Haitian slum showing off their Western-taught ‘gangsta’ moves. (Photo courtesy of the author.)

Children in a Haitian slum showing off their Western-taught ‘gangsta’ moves. (Photo courtesy of the author.)

I’ve been a Baha’i all my life and yet it never ceases to amaze me how intuitive the Baha’i Faith seems. Most Baha’i ideals quite simply feel true. They resonate and appeal to what some call “our modern sensibilities”.

And yet for many of us there remains that fraction of the totality of Baha’i ideas which is difficult, even daunting, to truly accept in one’s heart of hearts.

Many teachings stand in stark contrast to the majority view in any given culture. Some teachings challenge what is hip and trendy. Some defy what is passed down as a proud tradition. Almost all Baha’i teachings defy strong selfish impulse or entrenched habit. A new Baha’i or someone looking into the Baha’i Faith, may become so enamoured by the beautiful and instantly palatable core teachings that they unwittingly ignore a host of other fundamental principles which may later come as an unpleasant surprise — usually in the inconvenient personal challenge they present. Time should be given, and loving sympathy and utmost patience shown for every individual to process the most personally challenging Baha’i ideas whatever they may be. Continue reading

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