Monday, December 01, 2008

Celebration and Deliberation

The Universal House of Justice has called on the Baha'is of the world to convene 41 conferences to celebrate our achievements in this latest stage of the process of social salvation, as well as deliberate on the work yet to be done. The stories coming from those conferences already held in places such as Ecuador and the Democratic Republic of Congo are deeply inspiring. Starting this weekend, the American Baha'is will get their turn with conferences in Portland, Chicago, and Atlanta. The following weekend there will be conferences in Stamford, Los Angeles, and Dallas. Over 12,000 people have already registered for these conferences, with over 1,000 of those anticipated at the Stamford conference which I'll be attending with my family. I'm reminded of the words of 'Abdu'l-Baha:

"Look ye not upon the fewness of thy numbers, rather, seek ye out hearts that are pure. One consecrated soul is preferable to a thousand other souls. If a small number of people gather lovingly together, with absolute purity and sanctity, with their hearts free of the world, experiencing the emotions of the Kingdom and the powerful magnetic forces of the Divine, and being at one in their happy fellowship, that gathering will exert its influence over all the earth. The nature of that band of people, the words they speak, the deeds they do, will unleash the bestowals of Heaven, and provide a foretaste of eternal bliss. The hosts of the Company on high will defend them, and the angels of the Abha Paradise, in continuous succession, will come down to their aid."
(Abdu'l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu'l-Baha, p. 80)

If a small number of people can produce such powerful effects, imagine what a large number of people can do! I know many of the readers of Baha'i Thought reside in the northeastern part of the U.S. and I hope to see you all at the Stamford conference. There is something powerful happening through this deceptively simple act of getting Baha'is together in obedience to the Universal House of Justice. Let's find out together what that is.

PS: Readers who attend any of the U.S. conferences or have attend those taking place in other parts of the world, please share your stories in the comment section of this blog. I want to hear them!