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Switch to Forum Live View The Bahai Faith and the Israeli / Palestinian conflict...
5 years ago  ::  Jan 02, 2010 - 8:45AM #1
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Posts: 71

Hi all,


A number of world religions have stated their viewpoint on the Israeli / Palestinian conflict. Does the Bahai faith have an official standpoint on this and if so can anyone let me know what it is?


Thanks,


George.

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5 years ago  ::  Jan 02, 2010 - 2:18PM #2
aegregory
Posts: 73

I don't think the House of Justice involves itself in the political issues of Israel-Palestine.  Only on an international level and broad aspects of world peace and developement will you see official statements.  The House of course would be open to anyone who wants to consult about these issues..


- Art

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5 years ago  ::  Jan 02, 2010 - 2:46PM #3
world citizen
Posts: 5,402

I agree with aegregory that there has been no official statement by the Universal House of Justice concerning the Israel-Palestinian conflict specifically, but the following generic directive by them appears to answer the question:


"While the friends should, of course, support the principles of the Faith, including those advocating the oneness of mankind, and may associate with groups and engage in activities which promote these principles, they must scrupulously take care not to become involved in political issues ... The world is seething with unrest caused by conflicting interests of Governments, peoples, races and individuals. Each of these contending parties has some good and some evil on its side, and, whereas we will unhesitatingly uphold Bahá'í principles, we will never become embroiled in these internecine conflicts by identifying ourselves with one or other of the parties, however much in our hearts we may sympathize with its aims."  (Compilation: "Lights of Guidance," p. 530,531)


One of the Bahá'í principles requires the avoidance of any form of involvement in partisan politics.  I think many view this as only pertaining to voting blocs (e.g., Dem v. Rep), but the above clearly identifies "political issues" as well.  To favor either in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would be to essentially deny the rights of the other.  We believe that humanity is on the verge of an evolutionary leap that will carry us into a future where "world peace is not only possible but inevitable," but that it will only be accomplished through an ever increasing spiritual reawakening.

Blessed is he who mingleth with all men in a spirit of utmost kindliness and love. ~Baha'u'llah
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 02, 2010 - 3:36PM #4
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Thank you for your responses. I guess where I was coming from was more from a humanitarian viewpoint with the limiting the movements of many of the palestinians. Additionally though my understanding is that the Bahai faith advocates for some type of world peace keeping force comprised of many nations - From my interpretation this is something like the UN.


As the UN has ruled that the occupation of the palestinian land is illegal I was curious as to the Bahai viewpoint.


George.

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5 years ago  ::  Jan 03, 2010 - 12:00PM #5
world citizen
Posts: 5,402

George ~


I think you will find that the Baha'i International Community (BIC) views the Mideast conflict between Israel and its neighbors as more a problem of racism than geopolitics.  From a BIC 2001 article re the U.N. World Conference on Racism:


"On the issues related to the conflict in the Middle East, language was found        which expressed concern over both anti-Semitism and 'Islamophobia' - and        which also recognized both 'the inalienable right of the Palestinian people        to self-determination and to the establishment of an independent state'        and 'the right to security for all states in the [Middle East] region, including        Israel'..."


Included in an NGO Forum Declaration from that same Conference "...is language from the 'anti-Semitism'        caucus expressing concern 'that Jewish populations and institutions continue        to be targets of threats and acts of violence in countries around the world.'         At the same time, there is language from the 'Palestinians and Palestine'        caucus that declares 'Israel as a racist, apartheid state.'


You can read the entire article here.

Blessed is he who mingleth with all men in a spirit of utmost kindliness and love. ~Baha'u'llah
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