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Old 01-23-2015, 08:03 AM   #1
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My Interreligious Relationship.

My fiancée and I are solid. I feel that we will be together for eternity and he feels the same. However, our relationship is not without his challenges.

He's worried since I became Baha'i because it is new for him. He grew up in a Jehovah Witness family, and does not practice it himself. He believes in God but not in affiliation with any path. I try to reassure him that I am still the same me. I just have a closer relationship with God and seek a more moral life. I find I feel like I have to hide my faith.

Anyone else going through the same?
 
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Old 01-23-2015, 08:47 AM   #2
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Hi Olive. I was raised a Jehovahs Witness, so I can pretty much guess what his concerns would be. Living in a group with cult like tendancies that practices shunning to enforce a lockstep top-down ideaology is difficult to leave, and it leaves you VERY wary of religion in general, in the future.

But here I am, trying to be a Baha'i. None of the negative things I experienced in my life in the Witnesses exists here. He won't have to worry about you being required to record how much time you go in a neighborhood hawking Watchtowers to see if you are as spiritual as the national average, or anything like that.

My wife is not a Baha'i. If she wants to be, thats fine, but she's Christian and very sincere in her beliefs and I would not want her to change hers just to please me. She's my best friend and true love, and if we see things religiously slightly differently, I think we're just looking through the lens of the telescope at slightly different angles.

Now on the plus side, I figure we just get double the holidays. Plus, and this is a BIG selling point to non-Baha'i friends.. they get a PERMANENT DESIGNATED DRIVER!
 
Old 01-23-2015, 09:32 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by noogan View Post
Hi Olive. I was raised a Jehovahs Witness, so I can pretty much guess what his concerns would be. Living in a group with cult like tendancies that practices shunning to enforce a lockstep top-down ideaology is difficult to leave, and it leaves you VERY wary of religion in general, in the future.

But here I am, trying to be a Baha'i. None of the negative things I experienced in my life in the Witnesses exists here. He won't have to worry about you being required to record how much time you go in a neighborhood hawking Watchtowers to see if you are as spiritual as the national average, or anything like that.

My wife is not a Baha'i. If she wants to be, thats fine, but she's Christian and very sincere in her beliefs and I would not want her to change hers just to please me. She's my best friend and true love, and if we see things religiously slightly differently, I think we're just looking through the lens of the telescope at slightly different angles.

Now on the plus side, I figure we just get double the holidays. Plus, and this is a BIG selling point to non-Baha'i friends.. they get a PERMANENT DESIGNATED DRIVER!
Thanks for your response! I have a feeling the JW faith had an impact on him growing up. I have actually compared the two faiths with him so he understands that being a Baha'i is actually a good thing and that in many ways it is less restrictive than the JW's. I think he is coming around, I also emphasized to him that I'm not marrying him with the intentions of changing him, but marrying him because of who he is. I think that helped.

...and LOL in regard to your DD comment. I will have to use that one on him!
 
Old 01-23-2015, 09:53 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OliveBlossom View Post
My fiancée and I are solid. I feel that we will be together for eternity and he feels the same. However, our relationship is not without his challenges.

He's worried since I became Baha'i because it is new for him. He grew up in a Jehovah Witness family, and does not practice it himself. He believes in God but not in affiliation with any path. I try to reassure him that I am still the same me. I just have a closer relationship with God and seek a more moral life. I find I feel like I have to hide my faith.

Anyone else going through the same?
My guess in regards to Noogan's relationship is that his wife probably doesn't believe that all non-Christians will end up in hell. Anyone who has a hardcore belief in eternal damnation is harder to have a relationship with. I had a Christian girlfriend who did believe that when I was a Catholic, and tried to prosyletize me towards her form of Protestantism, and it drove me crazy some days and ultimately led to her breaking up with me.

My current Baha'i girlfriend on the other hand loves me for me and is fine with me being an atheist. Although some in my extended family still worry that she'll try and seduce me into some sort of cult (go figure!), I actually wish she would share her faith MORE with me. Not that we don't go to Baha'i holidays sometimes, but she doesn't really talk about it too much (when we do, I state my differing point of view respectfully and we try not to beat dead horses) or pray alongside my meditation CDs or anything like that. I'm also planning on taking her to see my local Sunday Assembly, which I hope she'll like. So go ahead and try suggesting doing something with him that you can both do like listening to a meditation CD (or something else)- he may be glad you did.
 
Old 01-23-2015, 09:24 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OliveBlossom View Post
My fiancée and I are solid. I feel that we will be together for eternity and he feels the same. However, our relationship is not without his challenges.

He's worried since I became Baha'i because it is new for him. He grew up in a Jehovah Witness family, and does not practice it himself. He believes in God but not in affiliation with any path. I try to reassure him that I am still the same me. I just have a closer relationship with God and seek a more moral life. I find I feel like I have to hide my faith.

Anyone else going through the same?
Many of us have been there!

My wife (now a Baha'i) was an atheist for a long time, and for 5 years of our marriage. During that time, she always accepted my faith and my right to practice it, but I felt compelled (within myself) to do so many things in secret for fear of alienating her or making her uncomfortable. It wasn't always easy! I'm not suggesting that your mate will one day believe in Baha'u'llah as my wife (although of course he may). But just remember that he has a right to view our faith with suspicion and as something new and strange because...well, it is! In time, it will loose its newness and strangeness for him at then he will be able to respect your practice of it more, and perhaps look at it with new eyes himself. Just don't loose courage to be who you are and be patient with him to be who he is. He will learn it is not harmful or strange as he grows in his knowledge of you and love for you.

Good luck!
 
Old 01-23-2015, 09:34 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Fadl View Post
Many of us have been there!

My wife (now a Baha'i) was an atheist for a long time, and for 5 years of our marriage. During that time, she always accepted my faith and my right to practice it, but I felt compelled (within myself) to do so many things in secret for fear of alienating her or making her uncomfortable. It wasn't always easy! I'm not suggesting that your mate will one day believe in Baha'u'llah as my wife (although of course he may). But just remember that he has a right to view our faith with suspicion and as something new and strange because...well, it is! In time, it will loose its newness and strangeness for him at then he will be able to respect your practice of it more, and perhaps look at it with new eyes himself. Just don't loose courage to be who you are and be patient with him to be who he is. He will learn it is not harmful or strange as he grows in his knowledge of you and love for you.

Good luck!
You totally hit the nail on the head. we had a good chat about it, and he finally spilled the beans about his discomfort. I'm glad he did, because now we can begin to talk about it as things come up.
 
Old 01-24-2015, 05:16 AM   #7
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The tricky thing is that one can believe that one lives in an interreligious relationship and then realize that the issues at stake are of another kind. For long, I believed that I lived in an interreligious marriage. Then I realized that we came from completely diifferent "cultures". In my culture, values and virtues are all-important. In her culture, interests are the basic thing when you finally manage to look through all those veils of religion. In my culture, one has personal responsibiliy, whereas in her culture, responsibility is collective or just somebody else's.

That's a huge difference, I can assure you.

Well, we are divorced now, but what difference does it make, when there are poor little wonderful children in the middle?

gnat
 
Old 01-24-2015, 09:56 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by gnat View Post
The tricky thing is that one can believe that one lives in an interreligious relationship and then realize that the issues at stake are of another kind. For long, I believed that I lived in an interreligious marriage. Then I realized that we came from completely diifferent "cultures". In my culture, values and virtues are all-important. In her culture, interests are the basic thing when you finally manage to look through all those veils of religion. In my culture, one has personal responsibiliy, whereas in her culture, responsibility is collective or just somebody else's.

That's a huge difference, I can assure you.

Well, we are divorced now, but what difference does it make, when there are poor little wonderful children in the middle?

gnat
I can totally see that happening for some. We are from very similar backgrounds. Both French Canadian/other settlers for generations. at least it will be easy naming the kids, we decided to pick French names as we have the same names repeated in both our family trees! lol
 
Old 01-26-2015, 01:59 AM   #9
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I can totally see that happening for some. We are from very similar backgrounds. Both French Canadian/other settlers for generations. at least it will be easy naming the kids, we decided to pick French names as we have the same names repeated in both our family trees! lol
That's the spirit! Make the little wonderful things! Go through hell for them! Suffer more than you ever thought possible, just in order to be close to then! Fear every day that you will lose them forever to the darkest forces you could have imagined! And still, you feel it was totally worth it.

gnat
 
Old 01-26-2015, 07:14 AM   #10
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That's the spirit! Make the little wonderful things! Go through hell for them! Suffer more than you ever thought possible, just in order to be close to then! Fear every day that you will lose them forever to the darkest forces you could have imagined! And still, you feel it was totally worth it.

gnat
As somebody who might want to be a father someday, that's very reassuring...

...

...

...

AHHHH!!!! :O
 
Old 01-26-2015, 02:54 PM   #11
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Every time my daughter says "daddy", my heart leaps for joy as I am overcome with feelings of love, pride and utter joy. Having my Sarah is the pinnacle of my life. The beautiful, loving, caring, intelligent, rounded young woman that she has become is my greatest treasure in this world
 
Old 01-26-2015, 05:17 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by gnat View Post
That's the spirit! Make the little wonderful things! Go through hell for them! Suffer more than you ever thought possible, just in order to be close to then! Fear every day that you will lose them forever to the darkest forces you could have imagined! And still, you feel it was totally worth it.

gnat
Quote:
Originally Posted by aidan View Post
Every time my daughter says "daddy", my heart leaps for joy as I am overcome with feelings of love, pride and utter joy. Having my Sarah is the pinnacle of my life. The beautiful, loving, caring, intelligent, rounded young woman that she has become is my greatest treasure in this world
You two melt my heart! so sweet. I'm hoping in 2016 after our wedding we will be blessed with good news.
 
Old 01-26-2015, 06:27 PM   #13
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You two melt my heart! so sweet. I'm hoping in 2016 after our wedding we will be blessed with good news.
Then advance congratulations are in order.
 
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