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Old 07-19-2017, 05:53 PM   #1
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Dilemma

O ye beloved of the Lord! The Kingdom of God is founded upon equity and justice, and also upon mercy, compassion, and kindness to every living soul. Strive ye then with all your heart to treat compassionately all human kind----except for those who have some selfish, private motive, or some disease of the soul. Kindness cannot be shown the tyrant, the deceiver, or the thief, because, far from awakening them to the error of their ways, it maketh them to continue in their perversity as before. No matter how much kindliness ye expend upon the liar, he will but lie the more, for he believeth you to be deceived, while ye understand him but too well, and only remain silent out of your extreme compassion.

Abdu'l-Baha'
Selections from the Writings of Abdu'l-Baha', no. 138

I hesitated to bring this subject up, but I am really struggling with what I should do in regards to lying and private motive. I do not have an assembly in my small community, and if you think I should write Wilmette, I will. I hesitated too, because of unkindness and snarkiness I have seen and experienced on this loved website, but I am most sincere in finding a resolution. I will keep it brief.

A very dear longtime friend and fellow Baha'i is married to a, for lack of a better word, compulsive liar. H is a Turkish member of the Sunni Faith, and is deeply entrenched in all sorts of conspiracy theories....like the Jewish people were the ones who brought down the twin towers on 9/11, Sandy Hook never happened, the Holocaust never happened, etc. And he is dishonest about so many things, things that are of no account and things that matter. My friend is well aware of this and has warned me many times. She has been out of town most of the summer dealing with mental health issues with her daughter, so we have had him up fairly often for supper. He has been spending a lot of time with another friend(M), someone I have known for 30 years, and M has been a Baha'i even longer. Well I ran into M in town and he started in on the two towers 9\11 conspiracy theory, with the hateful Jewish rhetoric. I was shocked, and asked him if he had been talking with H, which he admitted to and vigorously defended. Needless to say, many tears have been shed and many prayers said. I just don't know what I should do, if anything. And I have shared this information with my dear friend, as I felt she should know what is happening. She suggested I talk with M, but he is a grown man, capable of knowing right from wrong, not sure it's my business. I do not feel that we can invite H up for any more meals. I feel to do so is endorsing lying and hate. I would be horribly uncomfortable. Not sure we can even have him up with my dearest friend, or go to their house. Words cannot express how much this whole situation saddens me. I am hoping there are wiser heads out there who might share some insight or wisdom.

Loving regards,
Becky

And this isn't about H being a Muslim, at all. I have good friends of many different faiths and cultures.
 
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Old 07-19-2017, 09:10 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by becky View Post
I hesitated to bring this subject up, but I am really struggling with what I should do in regards to lying and private motive.
Why do we lie? What are the motives behind our actions? Sometimes I haven't the foggiest clue why I have a tendency to lie about some things and be honest about another. Piercing through the depths of one's subconscious mind is challenging, because the problem may be linked to something in our childhood we haven't brought to light or something else entirely we may be oblivious to.

There are many 9/11 conspiracy theories. I have a friend who believes the American government orchestrated the attack. In my opinion, my friend distrusts many institutions and authority figures. It probably springs from an emotional wound. You may not find the following advice very helpful at all, but I will recommend two sources I find constructive for navigating the complex web of human relationships: The School of Life (philosophy) and David Richo (psychology). You can find both online.

How to Resist Conspiracy Theories



How We Lie to Ourselves


Last edited by ahanu; 07-19-2017 at 09:26 PM.
 
Old 07-19-2017, 11:07 PM   #3
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dear Becky
I exactly know how you feel, because where I live, I experience the same thing almost EVERYDAY, and we have no assemblies here, so....

I, personally, after encountering this matter on and on and on regarding many people, decided finally to draw back and do not give their lies the least attention, also to stand as FAR AS POSSIBLE from such people. Yes, I think you do not and should not invite him to your house anymore OR invite him only when her wife comes back and then CLEARLY set the limits for him. like for example you can tell him something like, "while in here, I would prefer us to only talk about good things, how to promote our spirits and how to be good servants of God." and if then he wished to cross the boundary, just stop him. it is not a must that we should tolerate every hateful lie that comes from people's mouth!

the way to correct such a condition, IMHO, is not to talk to him directly; nor even to his wife. the way is through working on ourselves to become shining sources of light so that whenever we go we can spread this light of truth; then everyone around us will be affected to his/her own degree and little by little, the world will become a better place. it takes a LOT OF time yes, but good things do not come immediately
 
Old 07-20-2017, 01:17 AM   #4
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Greetings Becky,

For the past few days I have found myself thinking and praying for you. These things just happen with me for reasons I cannot fully explain. It was as if I could feel that you were growing to teach hundreds of people by teaching them how to fish. So an avatar that you once used here, where you were happily presenting a fish that you had caught, just kept on resonating with me. Indeed the image is now very strong with we and here you making a post.

Quite often our family face contests with people that have narcissistic, sociopathic of psychopathic tendencies. These can include Bahá'ís too because as you know the Faith is open to all people. Indeed we have been facing a heavy contest with one individual over the past three weeks that has a habit of targeting elderly people in order to gain access to their property through deception. Yesterday we went to our attorney and placed a court order on them to prevent them contacting us any further. This is simply learning how to apply secular law to protect your wellbeing. While you do not appear to be at this stage at this point, it is important to understand how to protect your own and your families spiritual well being.

I think you are quite correct with the view that you do not need to contact the National Office. The only time you might find it prudent to do so is to inform them of legal action you have been advised to take by your attorney, especially if this prohibits a Bahá'í or one of their family members from contacting you.

You should never permit yourself to be abused by another person out of the notion that you should endure such punishment in the name of unity. Unity cannot transpire when abusive behaviour towards any individual in the group is permitted. The abuse must be addressed first. As narcissistic, sociopathic and psychopathic individuals possess low empathy they are naturally attuned to aggressively promoting tailored views that others might be prone to adopt too. Such people can become unreasonable and exhausting to deal with. This is why you need to develop the appropriate skill set for dealing with them.

You need to understand that as you grow in spiritual intensity you are going to attract a lot of poor spiritually inclined people to you. They have a habit of gravitating to people that spiritually glow. We naturally attract them to us. We are not attracted to them. So the first thing that you need to appreciate here is that none of this is your fault. It is simply evidence that you are spiritually growing and attracting people to you. People with such abilities can naturally attract narcissists. sociopaths and psychopaths to them. Learning how to deal with them is simply a process of learning. You should not look on this as being a rational test. Such people do not respond to rationality.

You might find the book: Take Your Power Back by Evelyn Ryan helpful. Indeed she introduces her book in the link at the bottom of this post. Do not be put off by some of her terms because she is simply trying to articulate what it is like to have high spiritual qualities in the spiritual field of empathy and compassion. I hope this will help you to better understand that there are some techniques that people like yourself and your friends can benefit from learning

In my visions you are literally teaching hundreds of people about the values of the Faith by teaching them how to fish. Now these visions might be genuine, or they might be, as 'Abdu'l-Bahá once put it, be the result of eating too much green cheese. I can only share my feelings here. I cannot heal you or spiritually transform you. Only you can do this. Learning how to use your natural spiritual qualities requires the facing of tests. I have every confidence in your abilities because these people are nothing more than spiritual bullies.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=IziuqdH_YTM

Earth
 
Old 07-20-2017, 02:26 AM   #5
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Conspiracy theories are intellectual shortcuts, chosen by people who feel powerless. It is so convenient to ascribe evil intentions to people, whose intentions one doesn't understand. My approach to such theories is to take them a few steps further, and say things like "Indeed, our leaders probably belong to a clan of aliens from the Sirius planet system", or something like that.

Remember that our Faith, over the years, has been considered as a creation of one or the other of the enemies of Persia, in turn, Russia, England, Israel and the United States.

Conspiracy theories are boring.

Best

from

gnat
 
Old 07-20-2017, 05:34 AM   #6
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I would like to ask "How is H when he is not talking about conspiracy theories ?"
I ask this question because I have met many people that behave reasonably well, and can be even have a funny ad warm, conversation, except when the topic in question is raised.

One of the members of my extended family is passionate about believing all kind of conspiracy theories and pseudosciences, and I feel saddened and angry when she brings this to the table... but otherwise, she is kind and gentle and displays other virtues.

If this is the case, you may leave it clear that you are not interested in hearing or discussing certain topics, but that you welcome to talk about other matters. The message to them is "You know much better than those conspiracy theories. Allow yourself to show the best within you".

A person with a wrong belief is not necessarily a liar and therefore does not necessarily fit into the description of the quote from Abdul Bahá.
A deceiver knows the truth but then chooses to reject it and oppose it. Most people, though, are not deceivers but deceived. And that includes most people believing in encounters with aliens, the power of magnets to heal diseases, auras, quantum medicine, horoscopes, prophecies on the end of the world, and the like.

When I was a Seventh Day Adventist, I believed that the universe had been created in six literal days of 24 hours and that the scientists were all wrong. I believed that those who kept the Shabbat in the seventh day would be saved and those rejecting this would be condemned. I taught these lies to others. Was I a liar? I believe I was not: I was rather a blind leading blinds.


Just remember the story of Paul. He persecuted Christians out of conspiracy theories. And then he became one of the most lucid defenders of Christ and Christians.

Maybe H is not sincere and will never be... maybe he is a true compulsive liar... you know him better. I just would like to raise reasonable doubt on the possibility that he might be just blinded but otherwise keep the potential for something bigger.

Last edited by camachoe; 07-20-2017 at 05:40 AM.
 
Old 07-20-2017, 05:34 AM   #7
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I would like to ask "How is H when he is not talking about conspiracy theories ?"
I ask this question because I have met many people that behave reasonably well, and can be even have a funny ad warm, conversation, except when the topic in question is raised.

One of the members of my extended family is passionate about believing all kind of conspiracy theories and pseudosciences, and I feel saddened and angry when she brings this to the table... but otherwise, she is kind and gentle and displays other virtues.

If this is the case, you may leave it clear that you are not interested in hearing or dicussing that, but that you welcome to talk about other matters.
The message to them is "There are things in you much more interesting. Allow yourself to reveal the best within you."

A person with a wrong belief is not necessarily a liar and therefore does not necessarily fit into the description of the quote from Abdul Bahá.
A deceiver knows the truth but then chooses to reject it and oppose it. Most people, though, are not deceivers but deceived. And that includes most people believing in encounters with aliens, the power of magnets to heal diseases, auras, quantum medicine, horoscopes, prophecies on the end of the world, and the like.

When I was a Seventh Day Adventist, I believed that the universe had been created in six literal days of 24 hours and that the scientists were all wrong. I believed that those who kept the Shabbat in the seventh day would be saved and those rejecting this would be condemned. I taught these lies to others. Was I a liar at that time? I prefer to think I was a blind leading the blinds.

I do not take responsibility out of people who are deceived. Lies are not forced into our minds: lies need us to open the door for them. But there is a significant moral difference between error and perversion. Just remember the story of Paul. He persecuted Christians out of conspiracy theories. And then he became one of the most lucid defenders of Christ and Christians. There was something sincere about Paul's heart that in the end of the day allowed him to be rescued.

Maybe H is not sincere and will never be... maybe he is a true compulsive liar... you know him better. I just would like to raise reasonable doubt that he might be just blinded but otherwise keep the potential for something bigger.

Last edited by camachoe; 07-20-2017 at 06:15 AM.
 
Old 07-20-2017, 06:43 AM   #8
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Thank you all, you have given me much food for thought. Abdu'l-Baha's quote talks about kindness, but not how we are to interact with said liar, or if we are to do so at all. The conspiracy theory aspect, while I know it is hate driven, hasn't been a threat to me, not realizing, that it might be a threat to someone else. H tried it on my husband on a hunting trip, and got no where, so again I did not feel threatened. M, however, had a very difficult childhood, and I see now, is very vulnerable to such talk. I just feel very protective of him. So it is a given M will still be a part of our life. And, yes, the lying is real and is a way of life. H is very pleasant to be around, helpful if asked, and offering help. But, I have been lied to, one too many times. It's a weird, unsettling feeling realizing someone doesn't mean what they say at all. And will say something, then totally deny they said that very thing. So, for now, I agree that distance is my best choice. Prayers, yes, for guidance and for all involved. I cannot deal with this in any other way than with loving kindness, but I cannot allow this dishonesty and hate in my life, I see that now. Thank you for the perspective you all have given me.

Loving regards,
Becky
 
Old 07-20-2017, 05:10 PM   #9
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Becky it's obvious that I like keeping my words brief so, pray for and continue to love your friend, ignore her noxious husband. Not a matter for NSA , this is a personal relationships matter
 
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