I hold in my heart two memories that moved me deeply from my visit to the International Archives Building during my Pilgrimage in the Holy Land. The first was the handful of pebbles that was found in the pocket of the Purest Branch, Mirza Mihdi, after his tragic and fatal fall from the skylight of a rooftop in the prison-city of Akka; and the second was the exquisite, hand-stitched clothing of His Holiness the Bab. The latter captured my attention and imagination because of its delicate beauty and ornate craftsmanship, the elaborate attention given to detail and the painstakingly fine stitching. In my mind I could only imagine how each single stitch must have been sewn with such love and precious care for the Owner of the attire.
The Bab was born on October 20, 1819 in Shiraz, Iran, and whilst we know very little of the early days of the Person of the Bab, Shoghi Effendi describes Him as:
…infinite in His tenderness, irresistible in His charm, unsurpassed in His heroism, [and] matchless in the dramatic circumstances of His short yet eventful life.
Reza Mostmand has been practicing and developing the art of Persian Calligraphy since he was a young student in Shiraz, Iran.
Years later while volunteering at the Baha’i World Centre in Israel as a Digital Imaging Restoration Specialist, he had the unique opportunity of being exposed to marvellous works of early masters of Persian calligraphy. This exposure to those historic pieces along with the teachings of the Baha’i Faith are his continuous source of inspiration and motivation.
Now based in Toronto, Canada, Reza works as a senior designer at 19gale, a design, web and multi-media agency which he co-founded over 3 years ago. But that hasn’t stopped Reza from putting ink to paper and continuing the tradition of Persian calligraphy while adding his own unique spin to the art form. His work has been featured in local exhibitions and conferences, and he offers calligraphy workshops for youth and adults where they explore the history of calligraphy through drama, and are taught the basic rules followed by hands-on practice.
I’ve been following Reza’s artwork for quite some time now, and I was finally able to corner him and ask him some questions about his wonderful art: Continue reading
As most of you know, bahai.org is the official website of the worldwide Baha’i community, and whenever someone asks me what website they should use to find out more about the Baha’i Faith, I always give them the bahai.org address.
bahai.org has just gone through a beautiful redesign with new menu options and catagories to choose from. It’s still in its final stages of testing and development, and you can choose to revert to the old design as well, but the new design is refreshing and straightforward, helping you and your friends easily find out What Baha’is Believe, What Baha’is Do and making the Baha’i Reference Library easily accessible.
Have a look at the new bahai.org site by clicking here.
It recently struck me that becoming more spiritual requires both effort and volition, that it isn’t something that will just happen unless I do my part for it. This realisation came while I was reflecting on the following quote from Baha’u’llah:
Love Me, that I may love thee. If thou lovest Me not, My love can in no wise reach thee.
I realised that I needed to focus more on the first part of the quote, “Love Me…”, which I had previously almost overlooked. Many of us know that at times this command requires effort, and at other times it can seem like the most natural thing in the world. However, at least for me, loving God is not always something that comes easily, and I have to consciously remind myself of it ever so often, so here are four ways.
A classroom in Battambang, Cambodia (Photo: Baha’i World Centre)
Education is a fundamental right to which every child is entitled. An education is fundamental to the development of individuals and their continued wellbeing. It allows individuals to realize their full human capacities and to live rich and meaningful lives. Beyond that, however, education also has the potential to shape entire communities. Continue reading
Towards a Better Society is a new 53 minute documentary from the Baha’i Community of the United Kingdom which follows the movement of youth; before, during and after the London Youth Conference in 2013.
The London Youth Conference was one of 114 Youth Conferences announced by the Universal House of Justice across the globe, and the documentary captures the personal stories of young people from Camberwell (London), Sheffield and Ennis (Republic of Ireland) as they strive to work towards building a better society.
Hopefully this film will serve as an inspiring resource and tool for furthering the community building efforts at the grassroots.
Happy viewing everyone!
Pictured above on the left is Dr. Amin Banani, and on the right is Dr. Nader Saiedi.
We’re always trying to get our hands on Baha’i talks here at Baha’i Blog (taking copyright seriously of course), and in fact one of the requests from our recent Baha’i Blog Survey
was to make more Baha’i Talks available.
And now, thanks to the Local Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of Santa Monica, California we’re happy to share with everyone two sets of talks held at the Santa Monica Baha’i Centre.
The first is a series of three talks given by Professor Amin Banani in 2003 on the “World Order of Baha’u’llah”.
The second is a series of 12 talks given by Professor Nader Saiedi called “Text and Context in the Baha’i Heroic Age” held in 2014.
Both were held at the Santa Monica Baha’i Centre, and we are so grateful to the Santa Monica Baha’i Community for not only organizing these talks, but for taking the initiative to record them! Continue reading
Pictured above is the design for the local Baha’i House of Worship to be built in the Norte del Cauca region of Colombia. (Image: Baha’i World News Service)
The design for the local Baha’i House of Worship to be built in the Norte del Cauca region of Colombia was unveiled on Sunday 14 September to an audience of 500 people from the region and other visitors.
The Baha’i World News Service explained that a small team from the Colombian architectural firm, CUNA, presented the approved plans, and Eduard Lopez, one of the architects working on the project, described the process by which the team developed the design for the Temple:
“Mr. Lopez explained that its members spent many hours, over the course of months, visiting different communities and groups in Norte del Cauca, listening to their ideas and thoughts about the House of Worship, coming to understand their aspirations, and participating in their community-building activities.”
Read the full article about the unveiling of the design of the House of Worship in Colombia from the Baha’i World News Service website: news.bahai.org/story/1020
In 1990 a group of Baha’is active in business and management met up in Chamonix, France, to discuss their concerns about the decline of ethics and values in the business world. The result of this meeting was the creation of the ‘European Baha’i Business Forum’ [EBBF], a non-profit association aimed at promoting the moral and spiritual wisdom and principles found in the teachings of the Baha’i Faith and the great religious traditions of the world, such as the principles of justice, respect, trustworthiness, integrity and unity.
From its beginning, EBBF members have attached importance to sharing their broad experience, and now 25 years on, it has evolved into a global learning community of mindful people with members in over 50 countries, and now ‘EBBF’ stands for ‘Ethical Business Building the Future’. The organization continues to accompany individuals by connecting them to new ideas, tools and other individuals around the world who are exploring and learning, through action, how to contribute to a more prosperous, just and sustainable civilization through their daily work.
This year I’m super excited about the fact that I’ll be attending the annual EBBF conference being held between the 2nd and 5th of October in Barcelona, Spain, and so I decided to catch up with EBBF Director General Daniel Truran to find out more about this wonderful initiative: Continue reading
A few weeks ago the team here at Baha’i Blog conducted a short five minute survey to find out how we could improve the site and to learn more about what our readers wanted to see more (or less) of, and how the site was being used. We’ll get to more of those survey results in some follow-up posts, but to start off, some of the responses related to people wanting more about Baha’i-related music, musicians, albums and resources. The good news is that we’re passionate about music, and we already have dozens of articles relating to music, Baha’i musicians and the Baha’i-inspired music and albums they’ve produced and this is something we’re going to keep covering, so although we only publish two articles per week (which means we can’t have every article be about music) we still do our best to showcase as much music-related material as possible.
As a result of the feedback from the survey, I thought it would be a good idea to do a round-up of the musicians and albums we’ve featured here on Baha’i Blog, as many of you may have missed them. So ladies and gentleman, here are 28 Baha’i-inspired albums and musicians featured on Baha’i Blog you may have missed, starting from our earliest to our most recent posts: Continue reading