Baha’i’s of University Place take part in Global 200th Anniversary Celebration

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The first Local Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of University Place, formed on Tuesday, Sept. 11, 1979. (Front row) Hushmand Tirandaz, Shiva Tirandaz, Sue Myatt, Loyd Myatt. (Back Row) Zuhair Dallal, Lenore Lawrence, Manousheed Bagha, Chris Morgan, Wanda Reid. courtesy photo

Join members of the Baha’i community from University Place on Sunday, Oct. 22 at 2:30 p.m. at Curtis Jr. High School as they join millions of people worldwide in celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Baha’u’llah, the founder of the Baha’i faith. The celebration is part of a global event – festivities that will take place over a 48-hour period. The program will include music, dance, refreshments and inspiring presentations on Baha’u’llah’s vision for the unification of mankind.

The teachings of the founders of the world’s religions have inspired breath-taking achievements in literature, architecture, art and music. They have fostered the promotion of reason, science, and education. Their moral principles have been translated into universal codes of law, regulating and elevating human relationships. These uniquely endowed individuals are referred to as “Manifestations of God” in the Bahá’í writings, and include (among others) Krishna, Moses, Zoroaster, Buddha, Jesus Christ, Muhammad, the Báb and Bahá’u’lláh. History provides countless examples of how these figures have awakened in whole populations capacities to love, to forgive, to create, to dare greatly, to overcome prejudice, to sacrifice for the common good and to discipline the impulses of humanity’s baser instincts. These achievements can be recognized as the common spiritual heritage of the human race.

Baha’is recognize the internationally celebrated prophet, Bahá’u’lláh, as the latest in the series of divinely inspired moral educators who have guided humanity from age to age. He proclaimed that humanity is now approaching its long-awaited stage of maturity: unity at the global level of social organization. He provides a vision of the oneness of humanity, a moral framework, and teachings that, founded on the harmony of science and religion, directly address today’s problems. He points the way to the next stage of human social evolution. He offers to the peoples of the world a unifying story consistent with our scientific understanding of reality. He calls on us to recognize our common humanity, to see ourselves as members of one family, to end estrangement and prejudice, and to come together. By doing so, all peoples and every social group can be protagonists in shaping their own future, and, ultimately, a just and peaceful global civilization.

According to Local Spiritual Assembly Secretary Roya Sabeti, “There were Bahá’í’s in University Place long before it officially became a city. Once there are nine or more Baha’i’s in a locality, each locality (community) elects an administrative body called the Local Spiritual Assembly or LSA. The first LSA in University Place was elected in 1979. Over the years, many individuals from the Bahá’í community have been actively involved in service to the city. Our community is a model for unity. We have members from many ethnic backgrounds: Anglo, Vietnamese, Persian, Arab, Hispanic. We have members from different religious backgrounds: Christian, Muslim and Buddhist people. These ethnicities and religions have been at war even in recent years, but there is no hint of disharmony in our community based on these differences. We can see that it is possible for people to put aside their historic differences and work together. Because we believe as Baha’i’s that our goal is to overcome our prejudice and learned biases and work together to build community. We believe many other groups are also working toward the same goals and want to join with them as much as we can so we can support each other.”

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