Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Spirit of the South

A couple of weeks ago I was checking out Baha'i Blog and tripped over this story about a devotional meeting in Jackson, Tennessee which is where my father (not a Baha'i) grew up and my uncle still lives.

The story is from the Jackson Sun and a portion of it is below:

What typically happens is that open invitations are extended for members of the community to come to one of their nondenominational prayer meetings. On the glass coffee table in the Schmidts’ home are the books “The Bounty of Allah” and “The Glorious Journey to God” stacked on top of one another.

On a recent Tuesday, three candles are lit on the coffee table as Bahai members gather for this informal prayer meeting. Rebecca Schmidt’s husband, Rick, opens up the meeting with a Buddhist ritual.

You can read the whole thing here.

This sweet story got me thinking about my southern roots (I was born in McMinneville, Tennesse and still have family there) and what the Baha'i Writings say about the Southern region of the US. Here's a quote:

Now these...Southern States of the United States are situated in the temperate zone, and in these regions the perfections of the world of nature have been fully revealed. For the moderation of the weather, the beauty of the scenery and the geographical configuration of the country display a great effect in the world of minds and thoughts. This fact is well demonstrated through observation and experience...Therefore in these states..., because they are contiguous to other states and their climate being in the utmost of moderation, unquestionably the divine teachings must reveal themselves with a brighter effulgence, the breaths of the Holy Spirit must display a penetrating intensity, the ocean of the love of God must be stirred with higher waves, the breezes of the rose garden of the divine love be wafted with higher velocity, and the fragrances of holiness be diffused with swiftness and rapidity.

(Abdu'l-Baha, Tablets of the Divine Plan, p. 67)