Friday, January 26, 2007

The Covenant and the Color-line: A Sneak Peak

A photo of the author near the seat of the Universal House of Justice, Haifa Israel, 2006

As most of you are aware in addition to all the other things that I'm up to these days, I've taken on the task of writing about a Baha'i theology of African American liberation which is coming together in a book called, "The Covenant and the Color-line: Baha'u'llah and African American Liberation". Because I love my readers, I've decided to share just a couple of paragraphs from this humble piece of writing for your enjoyment. It's not going to become a habit. Here they go:

"In the teachings of the Baha’i Faith, black people take center stage in the great drama of human salvation and are transformed from being a problem to being a solution. Baha’u’llah (1817-1892) compared people of African Descent to the black pupil of the eye “that is dark in color, but a fountain of light and the revealer of the contingent world”, “it reflects that which is before it and from it the light of the spirit shines forth”. Black people are seen in Baha’i teaching as having been “richly endowed” by God with “great gifts of mind and heart” that are of particular importance at this stage of the evolution of human consciousness and civilization. In Baha’i theology this evolutionary process is the aim of all Divine Revelation and has been facilitated through the intervention of those Spiritual Educators sent to us by God from the beginning of time. These Educators are those transcendent Figures of history, commonly viewed as the Founders of the world’s religions, such as Moses, Jesus Christ, and Muhammad. Each of these Educators have manifested God’s love and knowledge through revealing the Word of God and have guided humanity through stages of development analogous to infancy, childhood, and adolescence. This progressive revelation of the love and knowledge of God and the human soul’s response to God’s Word are the dynamic of God’s Covenant with humanity and the essence of true religion. Baha’u’llah has claimed that the human race is entering its long awaited stage of maturity and that He is the Spiritual Educator who has revealed the Word of God in a manner suited to the needs of this new stage of the dynamic of God’s Covenant with humanity."

"In order to avoid the inevitable consequences of the color-line, Americans must undergo a profound transformation of character that will be reflected to a greater degree than ever before in our private lives and public policy. It is the mission of the Baha’i Faith to achieve this transformation. Baha’u’llah has revealed a system of laws, principles, practices, leadership and social organization whose purpose is to bring into being a new social order, a global society founded on the consciousness of the oneness of humankind. This global society is the Christ-promised Kingdom of God on earth."

"At the heart of this system lies the Covenant of Baha’u’llah, that insures the ultimate fulfillment of His vision for humanity. This Covenant maintains the unity of His followers and the integrity and flexibility of the application His teachings as those who’ve accepted His vision work towards the creation of a world civilization."

"Through our own liberation in response to the power of the Covenant, African Americans will provide the spiritual leadership necessary for the liberation of all Americans. This is the destiny laid before black people in the Baha’i Sacred Writings and to which we are called by Almighty God."