Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Fictional view x.01 (continued)

Fictional view x.01

I'm not sure now that the Baha'i Faith ever was the progressive force I thought it was when I first joined, or that it ever will be. If it ever will be, there's no telling how long it will take. I'm still hoping that it will be, and I'd like to help move it in that direction, by awakening its members to what has happened and what is happening to the community, and by bringing to their attention the possibilities that I see, as far as possible in the face of campaigns of censorship and repression, and of vilification against those of us who are trying to do that.

The administration of the Baha'i Faith is now dominated by obsolete and superstitious ideas, and by some people's private interests and personal prejudices, which are impeding the growth and development of the Baha'i community, and preventing it from doing the good that it could be doing. A variety of afflictions including censorship, repression, bandwagon abuse, monopolization of people's time, self-perpetuating leadership, and worship of Baha'i administration prevent the community from learning better ways of thinking and better ways of doing things. Some people who have tried to change that have been penalized, stigmatized and socially isolated from the rest of the community, sometimes by the House of Justice itself.

What are the possibilities for us in this situation?

We need different people doing different things, according to their knowledge, interests and capacities (contrary to what has been popular in the Baha'i community). For example:
- Some of us may find ways to avoid the stigmatization and isolation, and still continue to work for change as members within our local communities.
- Some of us may do better working openly in spite of it, with or without loss of our membership.
- Some of us may do better with an anonymous Internet presence.
- Some of us may do better keeping the rest of us informed, or helping us develop conceptual frameworks for our work.
- Some of us may do better entertaining and stimulating the rest of us in various ways, including clowning, jesting and parodies of opposition and defense.
- Some of us may do better with a conciliatory approach.
- Some of us may do better with a wrathful approach.
- Some of us may do better creating our own models of the kind of community we believe in.

It might be lonely work for some of us because the work we've chosen to do, and way we've chosen to do it, make us look unenlightened, or even foolish, to most or all of the others.

We all have different ideas about what the Baha'i community could or should be doing. Some other people's ideas might even be diametrically opposed to mine. I might disagree with some ideas of some other people, but I don't want any of them to be excluded from consideration in the Baha'i community. Besides promoting my own ideas, I want to help open up the Baha'i community to exploring all of our ideas. I want every person to feel free, and to be free, to promote her ideas. One of the biggest obstacles I see to that is worship of Baha'i administration. Without that, other obstacles might be much easier to overcome.

I'll be looking for ways I can help promote a better view of Baha'i administration among Baha'is.
All comments from any direction will be welcome.

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