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Old 12-19-2015, 01:02 PM   #1
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Soviet (council) style system of administration

BRR

Hello all,

I am wondering if the Bahai Faith's system of administration by councils was ordained in the sacred texts (of Bahaullah) or if it was implemented apart from them? My thought is that in the end councils are not effective, just like the soviet system. They are prone to corruption, like favoring friends and relatives and closed-door deals. If this system is not explicitly ordained in the sacred texts, do you believe it should be changed in favor of another style of electoral system?
 
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Old 12-19-2015, 02:03 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Compassion View Post
BRR

Hello all,

I am wondering if the Bahai Faith's system of administration by councils was ordained in the sacred texts (of Bahaullah) or if it was implemented apart from them? My thought is that in the end councils are not effective, just like the soviet system. They are prone to corruption, like favoring friends and relatives and closed-door deals. If this system is not explicitly ordained in the sacred texts, do you believe it should be changed in favor of another style of electoral system?
No
 
Old 12-19-2015, 02:33 PM   #3
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BRR

Hello all,

I am wondering if the Bahai Faith's system of administration by councils was ordained in the sacred texts (of Bahaullah) or if it was implemented apart from them? My thought is that in the end councils are not effective, just like the soviet system. They are prone to corruption, like favoring friends and relatives and closed-door deals. If this system is not explicitly ordained in the sacred texts, do you believe it should be changed in favor of another style of electoral system?
Dear Compassion,

Have you tried to study this subject yourself? It seems to me that you haven't even tried to look up such basic texts as
Bahá'í Reference Library - Bahá’í Administration

Best from

gnat
 
Old 12-19-2015, 06:49 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Compassion View Post
BRR

Hello all,

I am wondering if the Bahai Faith's system of administration by councils was ordained in the sacred texts (of Bahaullah) or if it was implemented apart from them? My thought is that in the end councils are not effective, just like the soviet system. They are prone to corruption, like favoring friends and relatives and closed-door deals. If this system is not explicitly ordained in the sacred texts, do you believe it should be changed in favor of another style of electoral system?
What we have to date has come from the Covenant of Baha'u'llah. There is no Flaw to look for. Obedience and total dedication and participation is all that is needed.

God bless and regards Tony q
 
Old 12-19-2015, 09:45 PM   #5
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Perhaps I should've been more clear in my initial post. I've been reading a lot about ex-Bahais and why they had left the faith, and almost all mentioned some aspect of administration as the cause. My curiosity comes from whether the current system of administration is 'divinely ordained', set in stone and not open for change, or is it something open to further change depending on the needs of the community. Some of the same issues facing some Baha'is within the administration are very similar to those faced by Soviet citizens working within their Soviet administration.
 
Old 12-19-2015, 10:06 PM   #6
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The idea of putting the affairs of the Bahai community in the hands of elected councils, rather than religious experts, comes from Baha'u'llah. There's no chance of changing that, and no motivation to do so. In religion and in politics, throughout the world, rule by individual experts who are surrounded by an aura of authority is giving way to participatory models, usually with elections. It's far more likely that other religious communities will adopt systems resembling the Bahai one, than that the Bahais would want to change what Baha'u'llah planned.
============

Quote:
The decline in the fortunes of the crowned wielders of temporal power has been paralleled by a no less startling deterioration in the influence exercised by the world's spiritual leaders. The colossal events that have heralded the dissolution of so many kingdoms and empires have almost synchronized with the crumbling of the seemingly inviolable strongholds of religious orthodoxy. That same process which, swiftly and tragically, sealed the doom of kings and emperors, and extinguished their dynasties, has operated in the case of the ecclesiastical leaders of both Christianity and Islam, damaging their prestige, and, in some cases, overthrowing their highest institutions. "Power hath been seized" indeed from both "kings and ecclesiastics." The glory of the former has been eclipsed, the power of the latter irretrievably lost. (Shoghi Effendi, The Promised Day is Come, p. 74)
 
Old 12-20-2015, 01:13 PM   #7
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What's your motivation in asking this question? It's unusual for someone to join the forum simply to ask a very specific question when there are so many wonders of the Faith to explore
 
Old 12-20-2015, 01:25 PM   #8
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What's your motivation in asking this question? It's unusual for someone to join the forum simply to ask a very specific question when there are so many wonders of the Faith to explore
Aidan this is one of those Mysteries of the Word of God and how our connection to this world influences the way we see, act and respond to Faith.

As to this Question "is the current system of administration is "divinely ordained", that was answered above and below the last post by 'Compassion'.

All we have today is a result of Following the Covenant of Baha'u'llah. The people that have trouble with this have not yet grasped the power of the Great Covenant of Baha'u'llah, have not yet grasped the realization of the powerful forces of Materialism that have permeated our daily lives.

As the world moves forward, prayers for all and each other need to increase manifold day after day.

God Bless and Regards Tony
 
Old 12-21-2015, 01:08 AM   #9
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Hello Compassion
as Sen MacGlinn has truly mentioned the system is ordained by Baha'ullah. it is in the sacred book of Baha'is. you have asked if this system can be changed in favor of another style of election. well, I should say that we already have the election and it is the freest kind of election you can ever find. there are no candidates at the beginning so people must search for themselves and find the best person and all people have the chance to be elected.
you have said that almost all ex-Bahais have talked about problems in Baha'i elections and that is the reason for them not to be a Baha'i anymore. but let me tell you something:
"if a person's faith is not strong enough, if a person has not made his mind firmly upon a decision, then any breeze can change his mind."
if these people had not found a problem with Baha'i elections, then I assure you that they would have found problem with another aspect
we must judge for ourselves and see with our own eyes not with the eyes of others
 
Old 12-21-2015, 03:11 AM   #10
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Hello Compassion
as Sen MacGlinn has truly mentioned the system is ordained by Baha'ullah. it is in the sacred book of Baha'is. you have asked if this system can be changed in favor of another style of election. well, I should say that we already have the election and it is the freest kind of election you can ever find. there are no candidates at the beginning so people must search for themselves and find the best person and all people have the chance to be elected.
you have said that almost all ex-Bahais have talked about problems in Baha'i elections and that is the reason for them not to be a Baha'i anymore. but let me tell you something:
"if a person's faith is not strong enough, if a person has not made his mind firmly upon a decision, then any breeze can change his mind."
if these people had not found a problem with Baha'i elections, then I assure you that they would have found problem with another aspect
we must judge for ourselves and see with our own eyes not with the eyes of others
One could say that faith in Bahá'u'lláh is one thing and faith in other Bahá'ís quite another. We are not told to blindly assume that all Bahá'ís are saints and to assume that all Spiritual Assemblies function in an ideal manner. If you don't like the Bahá'ís you know, look for others. If your Assembly doesn't function, try to help it improve, concentrate on other matters or change your residence. And as a Bahá'í, there are so many things you can do on your own, without in any way being depedendent on your Assembly.

Still, if you feel that your Assembly arrives at incorrect decisions, you can ask them to explain how they arrived at that decision, based on what writings.

The Faith is in its infancy. We cannot expect things to be perfect from the beginning.

Best

from

gnat
 
Old 12-21-2015, 06:06 AM   #11
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While a lot of talk is made about how we have no clergy, not a lot of discussion is given to the fact that our Faith has set us administratively as a representative democracy.

I find that interesting. Democracies are not without their problems. They can be far less efficient than autocracies, and they run a risk of turning into oligarchies in all but name, or nepotistic systems where voting is based more on family name recognition than merit.

But their advantages outweigh the downsides. Elected committees keep one voice from being too strong, and are a good check against corruption. And of course if mistakes are made or a new direction is needed, it is as simple as voting away. It does seem like Baha'i democracy is still very young, and so there is probably much to be worked out. But it will, no doubt.
 
Old 12-21-2015, 06:11 AM   #12
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It's not democracy either, because the Assemblies are not accountable. They are advised to hear opinions, but not obliged to follow them
 
Old 12-21-2015, 06:55 AM   #13
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representational democracy. they are elected. the members may choose to ignore the community, but there is no guarantee they'll get reelected.
 
Old 12-21-2015, 07:21 AM   #14
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representational democracy. they are elected. the members may choose to ignore the community, but there is no guarantee they'll get reelected.
True....but others will, else the system will collapse.

Meet the new boss.......same as the old boss!
 
Old 12-21-2015, 08:04 AM   #15
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from Bahaiteachings.org

Baha’u’llah’s Covenant continues that unbroken chain of divine guidance and love, not only by promising that another world faith would come in the future, but by appointing Abdu’l-Baha to lead the Baha’i Faith. Unique in religious history, that appointment provides the organizing principle for the continuation of the Baha’i teachings and the administration of the growing Baha’i community around the world, as well as answering the questions of succession and leadership that have troubled so many past religions.

Because of that Covenant, the Baha’i Faith has survived for more than a century and a half without schism or sectarianism, and with its unity firmly established. That accomplishment, unique in religious history, means that Baha’is all over the world, from every race and culture and class and former faith and nation, believe in and adhere to a single unified Faith:

Baha’u’llah’s appointment invested Abdu’l-Baha with the authority to function as the sole interpreter of the Baha’i writings, and named him as the one who would carry out Baha’u’llah’s purpose in the establishment of the Baha’i administrative order. The appointment of Abdu’l-Baha as the Center of the Covenant also recognized that in his personal life, in his words and deeds, Abdu’l-Baha perfectly exemplified the qualities and ideals of a true Baha’i. The unique combination of these functions in one person created a unprecedented station in all religious history — Center of the Covenant — and made Abdu’l-Baha a singular, revered and beloved figure, renowned around the world for his humility, his knowledge, his service to humanity and his advocacy of global peace and unity.
 
Old 12-21-2015, 09:40 AM   #16
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True....but others will, else the system will collapse.

Meet the new boss.......same as the old boss!
All these comments are a result of we the believers yet not knowing how to truly serve each other and Humanity as a whole.

A person elected in any Baha'i roll becomes a servant to the community. Pride ego and opinion have no place. Knowledge and Wisdom do have a place.

We are still but children still learning how to apply the required attributes to all these institutions, but we will learn if we support each other.

The power has been released, it is ourselves that hold it back from being immediately manifest.

Regards Tony
 
Old 12-21-2015, 09:56 AM   #17
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Tony, I suppose what I am saying is, I think the system is good because it doesn't depend on people being saints, whether they ought to be or no.
 
Old 12-21-2015, 10:04 AM   #18
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Tony, I suppose what I am saying is, I think the system is good because it doesn't depend on people being saints, whether they ought to be or no.
Yes this is 100% correct

The system is perfect when we realise we all make mistakes and that we are all in it to find the Love of God.

To do this we all help each other battle our selves in serried lines. We all have a lifetime of fighting to do.

One thing about the forum, is we can all see that we all individually battle, it all works when we help each other to find the path.

Regards Tony
 
Old 12-21-2015, 10:21 AM   #19
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While a lot of talk is made about how we have no clergy, not a lot of discussion is given to the fact that our Faith has set us administratively as a representative democracy.

I find that interesting. Democracies are not without their problems. They can be far less efficient than autocracies, and they run a risk of turning into oligarchies in all but name, or nepotistic systems where voting is based more on family name recognition than merit.

But their advantages outweigh the downsides. Elected committees keep one voice from being too strong, and are a good check against corruption. And of course if mistakes are made or a new direction is needed, it is as simple as voting away. It does seem like Baha'i democracy is still very young, and so there is probably much to be worked out. But it will, no doubt.
I fear that here in N Ireland there's a trend towards nepotism. Of late the young Baha'i are being elected to roles previously filled by their parents. Or perhaps it shows the lack of imagination in the community
 
Old 12-21-2015, 11:36 AM   #20
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I fear that here in N Ireland there's a trend towards nepotism. Of late the young Baha'i are being elected to roles previously filled by their parents. Or perhaps it shows the lack of imagination in the community
Probably the latter.

gnat
 
Old 12-21-2015, 11:47 AM   #21
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I fear that here in N Ireland there's a trend towards nepotism. Of late the young Baha'i are being elected to roles previously filled by their parents. Or perhaps it shows the lack of imagination in the community
Same thing here. Both of my closest Bahai communities are dominated by two or 3 interconnected families. As their children become adults, they too are elected. The system is flawed because those dominant families have the numbers on their side to vote for themselves over and over. The rest of us will never be elected no matter how active we are in the community etc. Community life is stagnant because the same people from the same families with the same ideas maintain control, it's very hard to get past that.
 
Old 12-21-2015, 11:58 AM   #22
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Same thing here. Both of my closest Bahai communities are dominated by two or 3 interconnected families. As their children become adults, they too are elected. The system is flawed because those dominant families have the numbers on their side to vote for themselves over and over. The rest of us will never be elected no matter how active we are in the community etc. Community life is stagnant because the same people from the same families with the same ideas maintain control, it's very hard to get past that.
I'd say that communitty life is stagnant because there is too little teaching - that's why a few families continue to dominate. Best thing to do about it is to teach and get new members.

gnat
 
Old 12-21-2015, 12:09 PM   #23
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I fear that here in N Ireland there's a trend towards nepotism. Of late the young Baha'i are being elected to roles previously filled by their parents. Or perhaps it shows the lack of imagination in the community
Dear Aidan, this is the quote I was reading this morning, was in a very interesting book that is based on Hooper Dunbar's Talks. Great book, It shows how we must approach all and each other and shows how we need to work together in this mighty Faith.

"You must manifest complete love and affection toward all mankind. Do not exalt yourselves above others, but consider all as your equals, recognizing them as the servants of one God. Know that God is compassionate toward all; therefore, love all from the depths of your hearts, prefer all religionists before yourselves, be filled with love for every race, and be kind toward the people of all nationalities. Never speak disparagingly of others, but praise without distinction. Pollute not your tongues by speaking evil of another. Recognize your enemies as friends, and consider those who wish you evil as the wishers of good. You must not see evil as evil and then compromise with your opinion, for to treat in a smooth, kindly way one whom you consider evil or an enemy is hypocrisy, and this is not worthy or allowable. You must consider your enemies as your friends, look upon your evil-wishers as your well-wishers and treat them accordingly. Act in such a way that your heart may be free from hatred. Let not your heart be offended with anyone. If some one commits an error and wrong toward you, you must instantly forgive him. Do not complain of others. Refrain from reprimanding them, and if you wish to give admonition or advice, let it be offered in such a way that it will not burden the bearer. Turn all your thoughts toward bringing joy to hearts. Beware! Beware! lest ye offend any heart. Assist the world of humanity as much as possible. Be the source of consolation to every sad one, assist every weak one, be helpful to every indigent one, care for every sick one, be the cause of glorification to every lowly one, and shelter those who are overshadowed by fear.
In brief, let each one of you be as a lamp shining forth with the light of the virtues of the world of humanity. Be trustworthy, sincere, affectionate and replete with chastity. Be illumined, be spiritual, be divine, be glorious, be quickened of God, be a Bahá’í". Bahá'í Reference Library - The Promulgation of Universal Peace, Pages 452-453

God bless and Regards Tony
 
Old 12-21-2015, 12:13 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Grace View Post
Same thing here. Both of my closest Bahai communities are dominated by two or 3 interconnected families. As their children become adults, they too are elected. The system is flawed because those dominant families have the numbers on their side to vote for themselves over and over. The rest of us will never be elected no matter how active we are in the community etc. Community life is stagnant because the same people from the same families with the same ideas maintain control, it's very hard to get past that.
Please consider the system is not Flawed.

We Baha'is are flawed, all of us. We must accept this and then lovingly discuss the issues that face us.

Remember the avenues to discuss these issues start with Feasts and recommendations to the LSA. The processes are there, it is our incapacity to use them that is the issue.

God Bless and Regards Tony
 
Old 12-21-2015, 12:16 PM   #25
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I'd say that communitty life is stagnant because there is too little teaching - that's why a few families continue to dominate. Best thing to do about it is to teach and get new members.

gnat
Yes Teaching is growth

When we teach we first must teach ourselves. thus the process is always regenerating with no stagnation.

God Bless and Regards Tony
 
Old 12-21-2015, 05:27 PM   #26
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I am curious. Why was this thread headed in such a way to color it with a negative political connotation? Is there something soviet like about anything in the Faith? I do not think so.
 
Old 12-22-2015, 03:27 AM   #27
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The "Five-year plans" started by the Guardian and continued by the House of Justice have some parallels to Soviet bureaucracy's central plans:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five-y...e_Soviet_Union.

I have a guess that these plans are soon to be discarded by the House of Justice as the Faith community is maturing. (I think the next multi-year plan is going to be the final one.)

I don't know what the initial poster means by "Soviet-style councils" though.
 
Old 12-22-2015, 04:06 AM   #28
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In terms of other religions following the Baha'i conciliar approach, the Catholic Church under the papacy of Francis is heading down a path of "decentralization" that will see local Bishops Conferences and Synods granted more executive authority in the life of the church in their regions. This is the full implementation of the Vatican II concept of "collegiality".


Pope Francis calls for changes to papacy and a more decentralized church - Religion News Service

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis called on Saturday for “healthy decentralisation” of power in the Roman Catholic Church, including changes in the papacy and greater decision-making authority for local bishops.

Francis made his comments at a ceremony marking the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Synod of Bishops, a worldwide gathering that occasionally advises the pope on a host of issues...

National and regional bishops’ conferences should have more authority to make decisions affecting the faithful in their areas rather than always looking to Rome for a centralised decision that has to fit all, he said.

“In this sense, I feel the need to move ahead with a healthy decentralisation,” he said.

Francis also said it was “necessary and urgent to think about a conversion of the papacy”, a possibility that was first floated by the late Pope John Paul II in 1995.

In the first millennium of Catholicism, local Bishops were elected by the laity and clergy of their dioceses. Perhaps the Church will revert back to this as well in the future.

Last edited by Yeshua; 12-22-2015 at 04:11 AM.
 
Old 12-22-2015, 06:58 AM   #29
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Another amazing development in the Catholic Church. I'm not saying that Proestants will actually join the Catholic Church literally, but somthing more or less similar might occur.

I wonder how they feel about this in Northern Ireland.

gnat
 
Old 12-22-2015, 10:01 AM   #30
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Another amazing development in the Catholic Church. I'm not saying that Proestants will actually join the Catholic Church literally, but somthing more or less similar might occur.

I wonder how they feel about this in Northern Ireland.

gnat
Brother, I don't think people care on the whole. However, a small number have broken away to attend Tridentine Masses( pre Vat2 said in Latin) celebrated by breakaway priests of the Society of Pope Pius X
 
Old 12-22-2015, 10:02 AM   #31
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In terms of other religions following the Baha'i conciliar approach, the Catholic Church under the papacy of Francis is heading down a path of "decentralization" that will see local Bishops Conferences and Synods granted more executive authority in the life of the church in their regions. This is the full implementation of the Vatican II concept of "collegiality".


Pope Francis calls for changes to papacy and a more decentralized church - Religion News Service

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis called on Saturday for “healthy decentralisation” of power in the Roman Catholic Church, including changes in the papacy and greater decision-making authority for local bishops.

Francis made his comments at a ceremony marking the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Synod of Bishops, a worldwide gathering that occasionally advises the pope on a host of issues...

National and regional bishops’ conferences should have more authority to make decisions affecting the faithful in their areas rather than always looking to Rome for a centralised decision that has to fit all, he said.

“In this sense, I feel the need to move ahead with a healthy decentralisation,” he said.

Francis also said it was “necessary and urgent to think about a conversion of the papacy”, a possibility that was first floated by the late Pope John Paul II in 1995.

In the first millennium of Catholicism, local Bishops were elected by the laity and clergy of their dioceses. Perhaps the Church will revert back to this as well in the future.
What does "conversion of the Papacy" mean?
 
Old 12-22-2015, 10:04 AM   #32
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Brother, I don't think people care on the whole. However, a small number have broken away to attend Tridentine Masses( pre Vat2 said in Latin) celebrated by breakaway priests of the Society of Pope Pius X
I thought Catholics versus Protestants used to be the most important game in Northern Ireland.

gnat
 
Old 12-22-2015, 11:04 AM   #33
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What does "conversion of the Papacy" mean?
A transformation of the Petrine office, or rather "ministry", to emphasise that it is above all a ministry of service (i.e. servant of the servants of God) and guided by a collegial spirit, as opposed to bureaucratic centralization. In this respect he wants to de-centralize the church by giving local episcopal conferences genuine doctrinal authority.

Here is his vision for the Church, a "synodal church" as he calls it as opposed to an overly centralized one, as described in his October 2015 address to the Synod of Bishops gathered in Rome:

Commemorazione del 50.mo anniversario dell?Istituzione del Sinodo dei Vescovi: Discorso del Santo Padre Francesco
Our gaze extends also to humanity. A synodal church is like a banner raised among the nations (cf Isaiah 11:12) in a world which, even though invoking participation, solidarity and transparency in the administration of the public good, often consigns the destiny of entire populations into the greedy hands of restricted groups of the powerful. As a Church that “walks together” with men, participates in the travails of history, let us cultivate the dream that the rediscovery of the inviolable dignity of peoples and the exercise of service of authority will be able to help also civil society to be built upon justice and on fraternity, generating a more beautiful world, more worthy of mankind and for the generations that will come after us.
 
Old 12-22-2015, 03:48 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by sam001 View Post
The "Five-year plans" started by the Guardian and continued by the House of Justice have some parallels to Soviet bureaucracy's central plans:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five-y...e_Soviet_Union.

I have a guess that these plans are soon to be discarded by the House of Justice as the Faith community is maturing. (I think the next multi-year plan is going to be the final one.)

I don't know what the initial poster means by "Soviet-style councils" though.
And what are those parallels? That they both had plans called five year plans? I think there would need to be deeper similarities in the plans themselves before reasonably making such a connection.
 
Old 12-23-2015, 12:01 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Yeshua View Post
A transformation of the Petrine office, or rather "ministry", to emphasise that it is above all a ministry of service (i.e. servant of the servants of God) and guided by a collegial spirit, as opposed to bureaucratic centralization. In this respect he wants to de-centralize the church by giving local episcopal conferences genuine doctrinal authority.

Here is his vision for the Church, a "synodal church" as he calls it as opposed to an overly centralized one, as described in his October 2015 address to the Synod of Bishops gathered in Rome:

Commemorazione del 50.mo anniversario dell?Istituzione del Sinodo dei Vescovi: Discorso del Santo Padre Francesco
Our gaze extends also to humanity. A synodal church is like a banner raised among the nations (cf Isaiah 11:12) in a world which, even though invoking participation, solidarity and transparency in the administration of the public good, often consigns the destiny of entire populations into the greedy hands of restricted groups of the powerful. As a Church that “walks together” with men, participates in the travails of history, let us cultivate the dream that the rediscovery of the inviolable dignity of peoples and the exercise of service of authority will be able to help also civil society to be built upon justice and on fraternity, generating a more beautiful world, more worthy of mankind and for the generations that will come after us.
This sounds similar to the system within Anglo Catholicism
 
Old 12-23-2015, 12:29 PM   #36
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Disgruntled

Quote:
Originally Posted by Compassion View Post
Perhaps I should've been more clear in my initial post. I've been reading a lot about ex-Bahais and why they had left the faith, and almost all mentioned some aspect of administration as the cause. My curiosity comes from whether the current system of administration is 'divinely ordained', set in stone and not open for change, or is it something open to further change depending on the needs of the community. Some of the same issues facing some Baha'is within the administration are very similar to those faced by Soviet citizens working within their Soviet administration.
Compassion,
. The Baha'i Faith tends to sluff off disgruntled egos, who aspire to recognition and leadership roles. Its administration is the antithesis of traditional self-aspiring models.
. Since there is no campaigning, no nomination, manipulation is minimal at the outset, and quickly spotted by the Baha'is themselves. Hence, such aspiring personalities tend to not be elected or re-elected if they fail the test of self-effacement.
. Service to the Cause is the only motive of those who truly recognize Baha'u'llah and set aside the promptings of the lower nature. Even Jesus said: "The Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve."
.
. The primary element to understanding the Administration is first to see the Sun for what it is: the Source of Light and Guidance for humanity. Once one recognizes that Baha'u'llah is the Sun of Reality, then following the trails of Light flowing from His Pen takes on a new brilliance, unparalleled by any comparison to anything preceding them.

. "The first duty prescribed by God for His servants is the recognition of Him Who is the Day Spring of His Revelation and the Fountain of His laws, Who representeth the Godhead in both the Kingdom of His Cause and the world of creation. Whoso achieveth this duty hath attained unto all good; and whoso is deprived thereof, hath gone astray, though he be the author of every righteous deed. It behoveth every one who reacheth this most sublime station, this summit of transcendent glory, to observe every ordinance of Him Who is the Desire of the world. These twin duties are inseparable. Neither is acceptable without the other. Thus hath it been decreed by Him Who is the Source of Divine inspiration.

. They whom God hath endued with insight will readily recognize that the precepts laid down by God constitute the highest means for the maintenance of order in the world and the security of its peoples. He that turneth away from them, is accounted among the abject and foolish. We, verily, have commanded you to refuse the dictates of your evil passions and corrupt desires, and not to transgress the bounds which the Pen of the Most High hath fixed, for these are the breath of life unto all created things. The seas of Divine wisdom and divine utterance have risen under the breath of the breeze of the All-Merciful. Hasten to drink your fill, O men of understanding! They that have violated the Covenant of God by breaking His commandments, and have turned back on their heels, these have erred grievously in the sight of God, the All-Possessing, the Most High."

Opening paragraphs of the Kitab-i-Aqdas Baha'u'llah

Last edited by dale ramsdell; 12-23-2015 at 12:30 PM. Reason: .
 
Old 12-24-2015, 03:10 AM   #37
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Posts: 4
"And what are those parallels? That they both had plans called five year plans? I think there would need to be deeper similarities in the plans themselves before reasonably making such a connection."


Dear Fadl,

This is the day that shall not be followed by night. It may be a long time in dawning, but it will work itself out, with divine guidance, over time.

Some old-world forms our institutions may have adopted as they matured may be discarded as we advance towards our destiny. This is the day that shall not be followed by night.

The multi-year plans adopted by the Guardian and the House share a format with the growth plans of the old centrally-planned economies of the S.U. and Eastern Europe. The center sets goals (how many units will be produced in a given year, how many new LSA's should be started by next Ridvan) and also tries to control details of plan execution (How many new factories should be built in a region, how many times and how often a cluster should meet and reflect..) There is feedback from the localities, but a high degree of central planning.

These centrally-planned systems work much better in smaller, homogeneous communities, but less well as the community grows larger and more diverse.
A larger, more geographically and demographically diverse community calls for more organic growth, with less central planning. (A locality with few, mostly elderly believers may need to meet a reflect on a different schedule than a community composed mainly of college students.) This is because the center cannot have the immediate feedback and immediate knowledge of what is happening locally as the plan is carried out.

Interestingly, and perhaps not intuitively obvious in this process, is that even as the House of Justice takes on less of a role in planning, it will gain more in stature and authority. There are questions of moral authority that the House will be called upon to answer for a world-wide audience. I believe that it will do so, with the authority conferred by the divine presence that guides its deliberations. I don't believe that it will continue for much longer to set mundane details of growth plans.

This is all my opinion, of course. I am making an educated guess that could turn out to be very wrong.

Last edited by sam001; 12-24-2015 at 03:12 AM.
 
Old 12-24-2015, 04:53 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sam001 View Post
[B]I don't believe that it will continue for much longer to set mundane details of growth plans.

This is all my opinion, of course. I am making an educated guess that could turn out to be very wrong.
Gracious me. Yes, it could very well be you are very wrong.

Cheers
 
Old 12-24-2015, 06:22 AM   #39
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Joined: Sep 2010
From: Canada
Posts: 1,274
I think The concept of making a step by step plan to accomplish tasks, originated in the teachings of the Prophets.

One of the earliest of such planning, can be seen in Genesis 1 of the Bible, in which, God made a plan to create the world in 6 periods, and in each stage, He accomplished part of the plan.
Another one, is the story of the Joseph and how He makes a 7-year plan to store enough wheat for the upcoming 7 years of poverty.

These stories must have been inspiring for the people of the past Ages during the childhood stages of human civilization.
In our Age, the teachings relaated to Unity of Mankind, equality between all people and other Age-related teaching has been inspiring for the people of the World.
Though, most people may not see all good teachings come from prophets, they have been inspired by the teachings of the Prophets in each Age.
 
Old 12-25-2015, 09:59 PM   #40
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Joined: May 2013
From: forest falls california
Posts: 1,770
The Beloved Guardian's Plans

Quote:
Originally Posted by sam001 View Post
"And what are those parallels? That they both had plans called five year plans? I think there would need to be deeper similarities in the plans themselves before reasonably making such a connection."


Dear Fadl,

This is the day that shall not be followed by night. It may be a long time in dawning, but it will work itself out, with divine guidance, over time.

Some old-world forms our institutions may have adopted as they matured may be discarded as we advance towards our destiny. This is the day that shall not be followed by night.

The multi-year plans adopted by the Guardian and the House share a format with the growth plans of the old centrally-planned economies of the S.U. and Eastern Europe. The center sets goals (how many units will be produced in a given year, how many new LSA's should be started by next Ridvan) and also tries to control details of plan execution (How many new factories should be built in a region, how many times and how often a cluster should meet and reflect..) There is feedback from the localities, but a high degree of central planning.

These centrally-planned systems work much better in smaller, homogeneous communities, but less well as the community grows larger and more diverse.
A larger, more geographically and demographically diverse community calls for more organic growth, with less central planning. (A locality with few, mostly elderly believers may need to meet a reflect on a different schedule than a community composed mainly of college students.) This is because the center cannot have the immediate feedback and immediate knowledge of what is happening locally as the plan is carried out.

Interestingly, and perhaps not intuitively obvious in this process, is that even as the House of Justice takes on less of a role in planning, it will gain more in stature and authority. There are questions of moral authority that the House will be called upon to answer for a world-wide audience. I believe that it will do so, with the authority conferred by the divine presence that guides its deliberations. I don't believe that it will continue for much longer to set mundane details of growth plans.

This is all my opinion, of course. I am making an educated guess that could turn out to be very wrong.
The Guardian, Shoghi Effendi, set audacious plans for the creation of the Administrative Order of Baha'u'llah. Plans which covered the entire planet with a Divine System unimagined, undreampt of, in all of human history. Goals which were incredibly well structured and were actually accomplished!!!

And while the "old world order" was in the process of collapsing, "the New World Order of Baha'u'llah" was rolled out in its stead. Personally, I'm not too keen on criticism of anything the Universal House of Justice plans, the goals it sets, or the methods it uses.

It sits on a much higher mountain than any of us will ever climb, and is working with a pretty desperate human race, running away from the collapsing timbers of a crumbling old world order. They are in a much better position to call the shots than any of us. If it "appears" to be top-heavy centralized, well...

"He doeth what He willeth"
 
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