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Our quote for today is from Albert Einstein. He said, "My religiosity consists in a humble admiration of the infinitely superior spirit that reveals itself in the little that we, with our weak and transitory understanding, can comprehend of reality. Morality is of the highest importance — but for us, not for God."
In this podcast, we are making our way through Garry R. Morgan's book, "Understanding World Religions in 15 Minutes a Day."
Our Understanding World Religions topic for today is, "Baha'i."
The newest of what are generally considered world religions is Baha'i, which only began in the mid-nineteenth century. Although small, with about six million followers, in less than one hundred fifty years it has become a global and growing religion with adherents in almost every country.
Baha'i began in what is now Iran and was first seen as a sect of Shi'ite Islam. Shi'ites believe that one of the great imams of the past (some Shi'ites believe there were seven imams, others twelve) is still alive, in hiding, and one day will reveal himself as the Mahdi, who will bring worldwide peace and justice. In 1844, Ali Muhammad declared himself to be the twelfth imam and took the name Bab-ud-Din, meaning “Gate of Faith." Great excitement and rejoicing turned to anger and persecution when Bab-ud-Din's teachings turned out to be inconsistent with the Qur'an. He was executed in 1850, along with many of his followers, but predicted before his death that another man would come after him who would establish a new religion.
Join us as we approach the New Year, to discuss your Spiritual Journey. A candid conversation about how you came to be who you are Spiritually,and the changes to your life and lifestyle. What is the difference between Religion and Spirituality? What are your Spiritual goals for the coming year? Diversity in religions and denomenations encouraged!
Join us as we take a glimpse at this most important topic. The call-in, (646) 668-2620. We'll be waiting.
Nicholas Snow welcomes Sean Rayshel, an openly-gay, third generation American Baha'i who for the past fifteen years has been an advocate for LGBT inclusiveness in the Baha'i Faith. Says the Baha'i official website, "the teachings of the Bahá’í Faith inspire individuals and communities as they work to improve their own lives and contribute to the advancement of civilization." Yet, in a widely circulated letter from the faith's Department of the Secretariat the faith reinforces,"Marriage is a union between a man and a woman, and sexual relations are only permissible between husband and wife." Because of his same-sex marriage (since 2008 to Rich Tarpening), Sean faces the loss of his Administrative Rights and/or expulsion from the Baha'i Faith.
Sean founded the only LGBT Baha'i Twitter account Gay Baha'is United which currently has 1,500 followers, as well as being a co-administrator of the Facebook group "LGBTQ Baha'is and Allies". Recently Sean has taken over the helm of the longest standing LGBT Baha'i online site Gay/Lesbian Baha'i Story Project.
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