NSA's vote for other member's of NSA for UHJ?

Jun 2018
30
USA
#1
Query: Do I have this correct that it is the members of NSA's around the world, which elect other member's of NSA's for the UHJ? NSA cannot vote for filling the UHJ outside those in NSA's?
 
Sep 2018
81
usa
#2
The UHJ is elected every five years during a convention of the members of the various National or Regional Spiritual Assemblies (NSAs) across the world. Each member of the various NSAs, who were themselves elected by the Bahá'ís of their country, votes for nine adult male Bahá'ís.

All adult male members of the Bahá'í Faith are eligible for election to the House.
 
Last edited:
Jun 2018
30
USA
#3
The UHJ is elected every five years during a convention of the members of the various National or Regional Spiritual Assemblies (NSAs) across the world. Each member of the various NSAs, who were themselves elected by the Bahá'ís of their country, votes for nine adult male Bahá'ís.

All adult male members of the Bahá'í Faith are eligible for election to the House.
So, to clarify for me with my feeble brain LOL, members of NSA's around the world can vote for any adult male in the world, to office in the UHJ?
 
Dec 2012
199
Earth
#4
Greetings Mike4591,

There are three electoral colleges during the proportional representation (PR) voting.

Area Convention: All Bahá'ís in a given area elect one or more national delegates. Figures are based on population density. They can vote for any Bahá'í in the Area that is 21 years of age that is in good standing. In recent times some NSAs have taken to incorporate Clusters into Areas.

National Convention: All national delegates elected from the Area Convention come together to elect 9 trustees to the National Spiritual Assembly (NSA) and any vacant posts that emerge on the NSA until next years Area Convention. They can vote for any person in the Bahá'í National Community who is 21 years of age that is in good standing.

International Convention: All NSA members around the world are international delegates by default. They come together to elect 9 trustees to the Universal House of Justice (UHJ) and any vacant posts that emerge on the UHJ until next International Convention. These transpire every 5 years on years ending in 3 and 8 respectfully. They can vote for any person in the Bahá'í International Community who is 21 years of age, is in good standing and is legally registered as a male.

So as you can see, in theory at least, anyone legally recognised as a male (this is different from stating male because no one is legally authorised to check the genitalia of anyone else) that is 21 years of age and in good standing can be elected onto the UHJ. Bahá'ís legally recognised as women are exempt, but this could change if a new understanding can be established. Do understand that 'Abdu'l-Bahá was known to offer false insights in order to test Bahá'ís. So in order for this to transpire the key Writings from 'Abdu'l-Bahá would need to be viewed in a different light. I have no feelings either way, but the Guardian did explain that the Will and Testament of 'Abdu'l-Bahá could not begin to be understood until the elapse of at least a century; namely before 2021. So it is possible that the current understanding is not correct, but if this is the case no accountability can be applied to the trustees of the UHJ. We are all people of our time and this means our failings will become known and written about by future historians. The best we can do is pray they will be merciful to us.

The Bahá'í Administrative Order is organic by its very nature, so in order to understand it one needs to keep pace with current events. The very first UHJ was elected in 1963. The international delegates voted in the House of 'Abdu'l-Bahá. It is not longer possible to fit international delegates into this location because a number of new NSAs have become established since that time period.

The UHJ has never really been happy with the way PR works because it is modelled on the existing political world. For instance if we compare the number of Bahá'ís living in nation states with one another it hardly seems fair that those with a Bahá'í population of one hundred have the same voting power at International Convention as those that have a Bahá'í population of close to a million. We have to accept the restraints of the modern world but in more recent years the UHJ has made strides to become more adaptive. We still have a very long way to go because whether we like it or not Bahá'ís naturally have to comply with nationstate laws.

I hope this might help you with any confusion that you might have. If it not feel free to make another post for clarification. All mature users here should be able to assist you in your understanding of this matter.

Earth
 
May 2018
111
New Zealand
#6
So assuming 6 million Bahá'ís in the world , 50% female, 60% over that age of 21.. that is a pool of 1.8 million men to choose the the 9 members of the UHJ from ? ?
 
Mar 2013
563
Edwardsville, Illinois, USA
#7
An increasing number of members of the UHJ are coming from non-western countries, which to an ever-greater extent reflects the composition of the worldwide Baha'i community. It is also a fact that all current members were previously members of the International Teaching Centre. Many had served on National Assemblies previously, but were not on National Assemblies when elected to the UHJ. For those who are interested, here are the facts: Universal House of Justice - Wikipedia
 
Likes: tonyfish58
Dec 2012
199
Earth
#8
Greetings Tony,

There are many examples. They go from letters to individuals to more general prophesies about the future. One that is well known in recent years concerns the time given for the Lesser Peace. It was 'Abdu'l-Bahá that wrote that the Lesser Peace would transpire before the end of the 20th century. This is why the construction of the Arc Project was timed to be completed before the end of the 20th century. The two were scheduled to go in tandem with one another. Just reading the letters from the Universal House of Justice during the 1990s reinforces this matter, as does looking at documentaries made about the Bahá'í Faith at that time.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá explained that He put individual Bahá’ís and the wider Bahá’í Community to the test. You can witness this firsthand by reading comments made by those that choose to leave the Bahá’í Faith because of them. These demonstrate the nature of such tests firsthand.

The Guardian also drew attention to the fact that the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá cannot begin to be truly understood until the elapse of a century; namely we cannot obtain a meaningful understanding of it before 2021. Some trustees of the Supreme Institution are now sharing this in personal presentations because the time is close. So interesting times lay ahead.

Manifestations of God also test the faith of their believers. The Báb explained that His Revelation was destined to last for a thousand years. This piece is rarely shared with Bahá'ís because Bahá'u'lláh made the same claim to ensure that He complied with the Báb. It is actually why some Bábís refused to accept Bahá’u’lláh. They failed to understand that all Revelations last for a thousand years. It is a universal truth, even if it is not an astronomical one. Some Bahá'í views on prophesies can appear illogical to third parties because on hand they explain to followers of other religions that their teachings are symbolic and then prescribe to view their own as being literal. Tests are therefore a necessary component of growth.

Bahá’u’lláh has explained that a man can take two wives. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá has commented on this law within Kitáb-i-Aqdas, in particular the conditions under His notes. This is because they make the law impossible to be implemented in the first place. Think about this. Who then was Bahá'u'lláh putting to the test?

You will naturally come across many such example in your general reading once you become aware of what to look for. The thing to appreciate is never be embarrassed as to how Bahá'ís and/or Bahá'í Institutions might acted under such tests. Failure is natural. It is a part of life. The important thing to do is to get up afterwards and recognise how easy it was to fail and what went wrong. This creates understanding and from this we can acquire greater wisdom. It is a mighty gift from the Master, but it is can only be appreciated after we have been dealt a lesson in humility; no matter how uncomfortable this might be. Promising people around the world the Lesser Peace was guaranteed to transpire before the end of the 20th century was certainly a lesson in humility. Indeed some Bahá'ís have still not recovered from it. I think William Sears might have expressed the remedy best in his book God Loves Laughter.

Hope that helps.

Keep happy!

Earth
 
Jul 2017
291
Kettering, Ohio USA
#9
Abdu'l-Baha didn't say that the Lesser Peace would come by the end of the 20th century. He said the unity of nations would come in the 20th century. The Lesser Peace is unity in the political realm.
 
Dec 2012
199
Earth
#10
Greetings Duane,

Welcome to the forum by the way. I hope you are settling in from Delphi.

Yes you are correct in the term, and I thank you for the correction, but we need to view it in its historic context. For instance 'Abdu'l-Bahá would often play down Bahá'í terms in order to convey a general idea rather than allowing it to become lost in unknown terminology. I think we can agree that the notion of Lesser and Greater Peace are concepts that would make little sense to anyone outside of the Faith at that time. Whereas the unity of nations does. Now it could be argued that this has already been met with the United Nations. The Guardian was certainly a supporter of it and even sanctioned the Bahá'í International Community (BIC) to become active members. But this does not explain why the Universal House of Justice was so adamant about translating this to mean that the Lesser Peace would transpire before the end of the 20th century. The emphasis here is with both the Universal House of Justice's historic interpretation and the way it was supported by Institution of the Learned (The Institution of the Counsellors residing at the International Teaching Centre in today’s terminology), not mine. I am merely taking the view held and promoted at that time.

The more one examines issues like this, including letters of guarantee from the Universal House of Justice to politicians making decisions about persecutions in Iran for instance, we see that there appears to be a policy of redacting material in thirty year cycles. This is usually long enough for people to forget. But sometimes they do not. Hence why the Yaran Seven was to become an issue with some longstanding politicians. Some still held letters of reassurances from the Universal House of Justice that there would be no Bahá’í Administration of any kind whatsoever within the Islamic Republic of Iran after it was formally prohibited. Believe me, it is rather difficult to help any dutiful politician, rare by their very nature, to view such matters as being about human rights when it can be formally demonstrated they were misrepresented about the facts in the first place.

The consequences of trustees employing misrepresentation, be it about an interpretation of the Bahá’í Writings or a secular issue can be very harsh if such matters are not redressed the moment they become apparent. It is not good policy to suggest that a belief that resulted in accumulating hundreds of millions of dollars might be incorrect after using it as a justification to obtain the revenue in the first place. These are not issues for individual Bahá’ís because trustees are legally accountable for their own actions with regards to finances. The problem is when people meet the legal classification of being a cleric, namely those that serve the Institution of Counsellors, are free to promote any ideas of their choosing with impunity. So I rather feel the trustees on the Universal House of Justice often find themselves having to contend with issues that are not truly of their own making. A matter that can be better understood by the views of former trustees once they leave. Alí Nakhjavání’s concerns about the claims made by representatives of the Institution of Counsellors about Ruhi being one recent example. It is rather refreshing witnessing a formed trustee of the Universal House of Justice putting such people in their place and inferring they have been misrepresenting the facts. If anything it helps rank and file believers to better understand why they should not believe everything they hear. This was the heart of the issue for all of us that were around at that time and it is the lesson we must all take from it today.

Here is wishing you well in your insightful posts. I might not comment on your larger pieces, but I do read them.

Earth
 
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