October Resources 2020

Click HERE for locally-hosted online devotions, discussion groups, and more on our website calendar!

In 1844 there was a momentous conversation, lasting from evening through dawn of the next day. The declaration was made that a new revelation of spiritual bounties from God to humanity had begun. In the book of God’s teachings, this chapter is called the Bábí Faith, named for the Báb, whose title means Gate (the gate to God). The spiritual teachings of the Báb rapidly spread through the land of His birth, Persia, and soon there were many adherents. This was followed by unjust, deadly persecution of the Bábís, and the imprisonment and execution six years later of the Báb. On October 18 we celebrate the 101st anniversary of the birth of the Báb.

One follower of the Báb who was imprisoned for His religious beliefs was Bahá’u’lláh, whose title means Glory of God. While in prison, the revelation of the station of Bahá’u’lláh as the One foretold by the Báb, and the next divine educator, was made clear to Bahá’u’lláh. From the prison He was sent out of the country into exile and imprisonment that would continue for the rest of His life. It would be 10 years later when He announced this latest chapter in God’s book: the Bahá’í Faith. On October 19 we celebrate the 103rd anniversary of the birth of Bahá’u’lláh.

The strength and guidance humanity needs so desperately now has been given to us by these Divine Educators. Everyone is invited to share prayers online together, study this guidance, and act in service with and for others.

Online observances of the birthday commemorations will be posted on the website calendar at portlandbahai.org and on Facebook: “Portland Metro Baha’i Community.” For more information about the Bahá’í Faith, please visit https://www.bahai.us/

Online Devotions: every Sunday, 10:30 – 11:30 am. Hello friends, please join a spiritual refreshment time! For the current meeting log-in information, email  bahaisundaydevotions@gmail.com.  Sponsored by the Local Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Portland.

Online Devotions: every Sunday, 10:00 – 10:30 am. For more information, please call our Vancouver Bahá’í information line at 971-248-5219.  Sponsored by the Local Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Vancouver.

Upcoming Baha’i Chats at https://bahai.chat/

Racial Justice Series III A conversation with the U.S. Baha’i Office of Public Affairs’ Race Discourse Officers and Guests. Part of the series Curated Conversations by Layli Maparyan and Masud Olufani – Saturday 10/10/2020 – 02:15 PM EDT.

A Conversation with the National Center for Race Amity Team – Saturday 10/24/2020 – 02:15 PM EDT.

Learning opportunities from The Wilmette Institute:

Exploring the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament

“The Hebrew Bible (the Old Testament) is a collection of writings sacred to Jews and Christians. It includes historical accounts, prophetic utterances, sacred stories, poetry, hymns, and a variety of other material. Composed over one thousand years by innumerable authors, it was assembled into a single collection after the year 70 CE. From its inception the emerging Christian community accepted the Hebrew Bible as scripture, although initially the canon was fluid, as the complete list of included books was not settled until the third or fourth century CE. In Exploring the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) we will survey the Hebrew Bible’s major books (including selections from the Pentateuch, the earlier and later prophets, the Psalms, and other writings) in the light of progressive revelation and in the historical contexts that they depict. We will also compare the Hebrew Bible with Bahá’í scripture, paying particular attention to passages in the Hebrew Bible that have been “unsealed” (authoritatively interpreted) by the Bahá’í revelation. Studying the Hebrew Bible in the light of the Bahá’í writings aims to confirm one’s faith and to provide opportunities for sharing the Bahá’í revelation with others.”

October 8 – Nov. 25 – register by October 8 at https://wilmetteinstitute.org/courses/exploring-the-hebrew-bible-old-testament/

Building a New System of Global Governance

“As humanity passes through stages of collective growth and moves toward integration and unity, it finds itself caught in the thick of many painful and seemingly intractable challenges that mark a turbulent adolescence–crises such as the Covid-19 global pandemic, climate change, economic recession, proliferation of nuclear weapons, gross human-rights atrocities, and mismanagement of critical natural resources. In Building a New System of Global Governance, we will examine how we can solve these and similar problems using ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s advice offered a century ago about establishing collective decision-making and implementing institutions that can and should evolve into a world federation of nation-states.

We will also explore the linkages between the creation of a new system of global governance and Bahá’u’lláh’s promised Lesser Peace relying on recent guidance from the Universal House of Justice that illuminates this subject. In addition, we will explore the lessons we can usefully glean from the American experience of establishing a federation as well as from Europe’s ongoing experiment as it moves toward deeper integration. Finally, we will learn how to respond effectively to skeptics who argue that creating a global federation is a pipe-dream because nations will never be willing to cede sovereignty, and we will equip ourselves with ways to allay fears that such a move will lead to an abusive world government that is so excessively centralized that it will not heed the voices of diverse populations and minorities and will trample upon their rights.”

October 15 – Dec. 2 – register by Oct. 15 at https://wilmetteinstitute.org/courses/global-governance/.

Webinar: The Issue of Self-Identity in Transhumanism and Bahá’í Writings. “Transhumanism or H+ is an intellectual and cultural movement whose ultimate goal is to achieve “singularity” – the merging of human biology and computer technology in order to enhance human capabilities and, in the long run, to make humanity immortal. The concept of singularity applies first and foremost to the brain, which is the conduit for human mind, consciousness and self-identity. As a result, transhumanists find themselves at the center of millennia-old polemics about the origin of life and the nature of human soul. What happens if a person’s brain is irreversibly damaged and replaced by its artificial duplicate? Will it be the same human being or a different one? Where exactly can the seed of human identity be found? In this web presentation we will examine, from a Bahá’í perspective, these and similar questions arising in contemporary technological discourse that involve various competing theories of the human self.”

Oct 18, 2020 02:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada), register at https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_aSS6sqnsQJW3Jl3VELINvQ

Learning opportunities from The Bahá’í Chair for World Peace, University of Maryland. Contact:  bcwp@umd.edu(link sends e-mail).

VIRTUAL EVENT: Continuity and Change in Antisemitic Falsehoods from Ancient Times to the Present.

From the Powerful and Evil Jew to the Zionist as Racist, Oppressor and Imperialist:  Co-Professor Jeffrey Herf, Distinguished University Professor, Department of History, University of Maryland, College Park.

October 6, 2020 – 4pm – 5.30pm – Virtual Event. You must register in advance for the event at: tinyurl.com/bahai-herf.

VIRTUAL EVENT: Reentry and Reintegration of People Convicted of Genocide in Rwanda.

Dr. Hollie Nyseth Brehm, Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminology at The Ohio State University.

October 29, 2020  – 3:00PM – 4:30PM – Virtual Event. You must register in advance at: tinyurl.com/bahai-brehm

The 2020 National Race Amity Conference will go virtual. November 18-20, 2020.
“Reset to Our Destiny – E Pluribus Unum”.

Cross racial/cultural amity – friendship, found at the core of all advances for access, equity, and social justice. There will be virtual interactive breakout sessions included with limited enrollment.

Find out more and register now at http://raceamityconference.org/