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Switch to Forum Live View Baha'i disowning people who convert?
3 years ago  ::  Apr 12, 2015 - 10:15PM #1
Ironhold
Posts: 12,363
I know this can't be backed by anything in Baha'i teaching, but the concept of it is astounding anyway. 
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3 years ago  ::  Apr 15, 2015 - 7:20AM #2
in_my_opinion
Posts: 4,107

Apr 12, 2015 -- 10:15PM, Ironhold wrote:

I know this can't be backed by anything in Baha'i teaching, but the concept of it is astounding anyway. 



You're right, there is no "disownment" in the Baha'i Faith.


We may not associate with Covenant-breakers. Even so; it is not a permanent condition and some have sincerely repented and been accepted back into the fold. Even the worst of them will be forgiven if found honestly repentant. This is a brief treatment of the subject:


en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Covenant-breaker


These people are rare, and can only be determined to be such by the Universal House of Justice itself, the head of our Faith.


That won't mean that estrangement may not arise or remain between individual Baha'is, but that is opposite to our Cause's teachings which hold unity to be our central tenet.

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3 years ago  ::  Apr 15, 2015 - 11:06PM #3
Aka_me
Posts: 14,464

Apr 15, 2015 -- 7:20AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

We may not associate with Covenant-breakers.



do you believe this is a hard and fast rule?


I don't.


much like the forbidding of kissing hands, I believe there is a context. if the CB is going to talk about why they left the Faith, or attempt proselytizing... then obviously there should be no association. but things like work related discussion aught to be fine.


few years back I had an officemate tell me he is Baha'i, and for some reason I just let him go on and on about Baha'u'llah and today's dispensation. eventually I asked "so what community are you in", and when he said "oh no, I'm not in a community"


alarm bells went off, guessed him to be a CB but he hadn't heard of Mason Remey, Leland Jensen, Joel Marangella, Joseph Pepe or Neal Chase.


in telling him I'm a Baha'i, he replied with "oh! so now you are going to stop talking to me like all the others?"


my answer was "I'm not going to stop talking to you because I don't have a reason to stop, but I promise to find out what happened".


after sending his name to national I get a phone call from some regional councilor saying he is a CB and I have to stop associating with him.


but my job involves talking to him I explain.


so then the regional councilor relents, because it is NOT a hard and fast rule.


and after investigation my officemate's whole family was removed from the CB list and 3 generations declared.


we always need to apply reason.

I dream in my lifetime uhmericans will come to realize hezbollah, hamas, and isis gain followers by helping society AND the only way to defeat them is to perform greater good.

the average person is 8 times more likely to be murdered by a cop than a radical terrorist
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3 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2015 - 12:11AM #4
in_my_opinion
Posts: 4,107

Apr 15, 2015 -- 11:06PM, Aka_me wrote:


Apr 15, 2015 -- 7:20AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

We may not associate with Covenant-breakers.



do you believe this is a hard and fast rule?


I don't.


much like the forbidding of kissing hands, I believe there is a context. if the CB is going to talk about why they left the Faith, or attempt proselytizing... then obviously there should be no association. but things like work related discussion aught to be fine.


few years back I had an officemate tell me he is Baha'i, and for some reason I just let him go on and on about Baha'u'llah and today's dispensation. eventually I asked "so what community are you in", and when he said "oh no, I'm not in a community"


alarm bells went off, guessed him to be a CB but he hadn't heard of Mason Remey, Leland Jensen, Joel Marangella, Joseph Pepe or Neal Chase.


in telling him I'm a Baha'i, he replied with "oh! so now you are going to stop talking to me like all the others?"


my answer was "I'm not going to stop talking to you because I don't have a reason to stop, but I promise to find out what happened".


after sending his name to national I get a phone call from some regional councilor saying he is a CB and I have to stop associating with him.


but my job involves talking to him I explain.


so then the regional councilor relents, because it is NOT a hard and fast rule.


and after investigation my officemate's whole family was removed from the CB list and 3 generations declared.


we always need to apply reason.




It is the general rule. It doesn't apply to people appointed to communicate with a Covenant-breaker. It doesn't apply to circumstances such as a colleague at work with whom you may have to consult about work, and there are other such rare circumstances as well.


But for most of us and by far the greatest percentage of situations, it most certainly applies.


We may not marry one, we don't have to apply for consent from them, we don't socialize, etc.


Referring to the Wikipedia article you may notice that it was called "a brief treatment of the subject" in post #2. Obviously the rest of the post does not contain much else that could have been said on the subject.

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3 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2015 - 1:01AM #5
Lilwabbit
Posts: 3,409

Dear Aka my friend,


For a liberal-thinking chap you seem pretty harsh on your son. By threatening him you are only alienating him from the Faith for a much longer period than you would if you just let him be and in fact encouraged him in his search. If he hasn't developed a love for the Faith by now (but rather fear or disillusionment), it's too late to 'shove' that love down his throat. Rather, I would calmly discuss with him as to whether or not his pull-factor to the Church is a girlfriend, and push-factor some of your own strong opinions which are not necessarily official Baha'i teaching. He may in fact be drawn by both, fleshly love (obviously not a great foundation) as well as feeling a more genuine vibe of love in the Church than he feels at his home. Let him see that because you are a Baha'i you will love him, accept him in your house and support his independent search even if he chooses not to be a Baha'i. It's called unconditional love.


Please self-reflect on these and do not take it as a personal attack. The spiritual well-being and future of your son is far more important than his "formal affiliation". Love him more than his outward allegiances.


Let wisdom guide you, and love fill your heart. Not impulse, anger or fixed personal opinion. In any case, these are difficult moments for the parent too. My close relative, in his late teens, became recently very disillusioned with the Faith by a combination of two factors -- the impulsive appeal of something else and the strictness and judgmentalism of his parents whenever he did something wrong from his earliest childhood. Me and some other Baha'i friends and family members intervened, showed him a lot of love and acceptance even at his worst behaviour and moments, but also our honest yet calm disapproval of certain impulsive and destructive acts. We encouraged his parents to do the same, combine love with justice. Now he's literally ablaze with love for Bahá'u'lláh and devouring His Writings. But to get to this point was a difficult and painful multiple-year process for all of us. And of course, never forget prayer.


Kind regards,


Sam

"All things have I willed for you, and you too, for your own sake."
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3 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2015 - 1:28AM #6
in_my_opinion
Posts: 4,107

Just read your post on the Mormon board and it is amazing.



Have some questions for you, should you care to address them and not find them too intrusive:


How long have you been a Baha'i?


How old is your son?


Were you once a Mormon?


Were you from an LDS family background?


How does your wife feel about what you said to him?


What would you say normally happens to a Mormon who decides to join another Faith than LDS?


Do you know that a Baha'i is not restricted to marrying because of the prospective spouse's Faith?


If, he decides to leave the Faith; do you know that he won't need your consent to marry anyone at all? whether you decide to let him live at home or not?

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3 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2015 - 11:20AM #7
Aka_me
Posts: 14,464

Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

Just read your post on the Mormon board and it is amazing.



did you read more than the OP? something tells me you didn't read any further.


Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

Have some questions for you, should you care to address them and not find them too intrusive:


How long have you been a Baha'i?



coming up on 20 years


Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

How old is your son?



he just turned 15, and is currently on the Rainn Wilson path... ie born raised Baha'i and excercised free will to become atheist.


funny aside... at age 6 or 7 we were driving and Ozzy's Crazy Train came on the radio. with "Maybe it's not too late To learn how to love And forget how to hate" he thought about it and asked "dad, is Ozzy a Baha'i?"


I was mid swallow in a drink of coffee and had to feign choking to prevent laughing because he would think I'm laughing at him rather than the concept of the Prince of Darkness being a Baha'i.


Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

Were you once a Mormon?



went from born Catholic to agnostic at 13, then declared at 27.


Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

Were you from an LDS family background?



no... from birth I've had friends, relatives, coworkers, and neighbors who are LDS. and researched it EXTENSIVELY. 


Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

How does your wife feel about what you said to him?



this was a 5 hour road trip, and we had a very enjoyable long conversation about this. they thought I really meant what I said because on the surface it is a very strong point...


you kick children out if they sell drugs in their bedroom. you kick children out if they try to kill their parents (granted only after seeing the behavior continue following much loving guidance). WRONG CHOICES are a valid reason to kick children out. mormons however kick their children out for being gay (which is NOT a choice).


in the end I told them believing that God allows humans to inject racist sexist homophobic prejudice into revelation while claiming THAT is God's will, is in fact not a valid reason to kick children out of the house (because it's not a danger to self or others which the previous examples were). 


Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

What would you say normally happens to a Mormon who decides to join another Faith than LDS?



a full range of things: 1. nothing happens 2. pressure to return 3. loss of relationship


Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

Do you know that a Baha'i is not restricted to marrying because of the prospective spouse's Faith?



yes, I know. my wife was Catholic when we married and we baptised our son Catholic. she eventually declared, upon realizing the Faith does not diminish the station of Jesus.


Apr 16, 2015 -- 1:28AM, in_my_opinion wrote:

If, he decides to leave the Faith; do you know that he won't need your consent to marry anyone at all? whether you decide to let him live at home or not?



yes

I dream in my lifetime uhmericans will come to realize hezbollah, hamas, and isis gain followers by helping society AND the only way to defeat them is to perform greater good.

the average person is 8 times more likely to be murdered by a cop than a radical terrorist
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3 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2015 - 11:35AM #8
Aka_me
Posts: 14,464

Apr 16, 2015 -- 12:11AM, in_my_opinion wrote:


It is the general rule. It doesn't apply to people appointed to communicate with a Covenant-breaker. It doesn't apply to circumstances such as a colleague at work with whom you may have to consult about work, and there are other such rare circumstances as well.


But for most of us and by far the greatest percentage of situations, it most certainly applies.


We may not marry one, we don't have to apply for consent from them, we don't socialize, etc.



what about if one's spouse becomes a CB... are we to then divorce them because of it?

I dream in my lifetime uhmericans will come to realize hezbollah, hamas, and isis gain followers by helping society AND the only way to defeat them is to perform greater good.

the average person is 8 times more likely to be murdered by a cop than a radical terrorist
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Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2015 - 7:36PM #9
in_my_opinion
Posts: 4,107

Apr 16, 2015 -- 11:35AM, Aka_me wrote:


Apr 16, 2015 -- 12:11AM, in_my_opinion wrote:


It is the general rule. It doesn't apply to people appointed to communicate with a Covenant-breaker. It doesn't apply to circumstances such as a colleague at work with whom you may have to consult about work, and there are other such rare circumstances as well.


But for most of us and by far the greatest percentage of situations, it most certainly applies.


We may not marry one, we don't have to apply for consent from them, we don't socialize, etc.



what about if one's spouse becomes a CB... are we to then divorce them because of it?




What do you think?

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3 years ago  ::  Apr 16, 2015 - 8:50PM #10
Aka_me
Posts: 14,464

Apr 16, 2015 -- 7:36PM, in_my_opinion wrote:

What do you think?



I'm guessing we would be expected to divorce, because of the severity of being labeled a spiritual disease which is communicable. as cancer must be removed to save the patient, a CB must be cut off as well.

I dream in my lifetime uhmericans will come to realize hezbollah, hamas, and isis gain followers by helping society AND the only way to defeat them is to perform greater good.

the average person is 8 times more likely to be murdered by a cop than a radical terrorist
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