Now Available!
This new publication highlights how Baha’is and their friends are systematically applying efforts in neighborhoods all around the county as part of a unified process of community building. Walk with us!
PREVIEW MAGAZINE

A New Take on Religion

Baha’is believe that religion is “the principal force impelling the development of consciousness. As the human race in all its diversity is a single species, so the intervention by which God cultivates the qualities of mind and heart latent in that species is a single process.”

Forging a Path of COMMUNITY & SOCIAL JUSTICE in America:

We are living in a time of both turbulence and great promise. Baha’u’llah said,

“This is the Day in which God’s most excellent favors have been poured out upon men, the Day in which His most mighty grace hath been infused into all created things. It is incumbent upon all the peoples of the world to reconcile their differences, and, with perfect unity and peace, abide beneath the shadow of the Tree of His care and loving-kindness.”

We face challenges unlike any other in history, but we need not succumb to confusion and fear. We have, in the form of the divine teachings of Baha’u’llah, guidance that will help us rise to present-day challenges and forge a path toward creating the glorious future that awaits humanity.

Origins of the Baha’i Faith

Who is Baha’u’llah?

The Baha’i Faith originated with Baha’u’llah (1817–1892), Whose title means “the Glory of God.” Baha’is regard Him as the latest in the succession of Divine Messengers Who founded the world’s major religions. In His writings, Baha’u’llah outlines a framework for the development of a global civilization which takes into account both the spiritual and material dimensions of human life. His teachings, centered around the recognition of the oneness of humanity, offer a compelling vision of an approaching world united in justice, peace and prosperity.

A Spiritual Approach to Healing Division in America:

Baha’is and their friends and neighbors from all walks of life are learning to apply profound spiritual principles to gain personal insight and to address social problems they encounter in their own lives and communities in America.

The principle of the Oneness of Mankind

“—the pivot round which all the teachings of Baha’u’llah revolve […] Its message is applicable not only to the individual, but concerns itself primarily with the nature of those essential relationships that must bind all the states and nations as members of one human family. …It calls for no less than the reconstruction and the demilitarization of the whole civilized world—a world organically unified in all the essential aspects of its life…”
-Shoghi Effendi

Learn more about the principle of The Oneness of Humanity

Principle of Justice

Another of these spiritual principles is justice. Justice is necessary to bring about unity. A unity that is both diverse in its expression and all-encompassing in its scope. Unifying approaches are necessary to bring about justice. Justice is that faculty of each human soul that enables each person to distinguish truth from falsehood.

As they reflect on the positive changes taking place in their own hearts and minds as well as the tangible results they see in their neighborhoods, they become eager to learn more and share what they are learning with others. This path is wide and welcoming for all to advance at their own pace, accompanying and encouraging each other, so that together we might move towards a more advanced society.

A Spiritual Path to Unity & Social Justice The Baha’i Faith in America

Walk with us!

Explore concepts that are working to translate love into action―such actions as deliberately going out of our way to befriend all, appreciating the indispensable contributions of all, and joining hands with all in the creation of a new world
Walk Together

Building Diverse Communities: Individual & Collective Empowerment

Baha’is consider it a duty to help humanity to come together as one family. The spiritual teachings of the Baha’i Faith inspire us to reach out across ethnic and class barriers to form deep and diverse relationships and to build communities that nurture the well-being of all people. The tools Bahá’ís and their friends and neighbors use to build this distinctive community life seem deceptively simple. They are, in reality, profound and revolutionary. There are at present four core activities, all of which have spiritual underpinnings. They create space and opportunity for people to have important, meaningful—and sometimes challenging—conversations that can lead to reconciliation and growth.

“Strive with heart and soul in order to bring about union and harmony among the white and the black and prove thereby the unity of the Baha’i world wherein distinction of color findeth no place, but where hearts only are considered.”
-Abdu’l-Baha

Video Story Collection

A Rich Tapestry

This series of video stories illustrates so ways love is being translated into action to address questions of race and culture in the United States.

Watch Here>

Social action: applying spiritual principles to social and economic life

Baha’is use the term “social action” to refer to a spectrum of endeavors that aim to apply spiritual insights from the teachings of Baha’u’llah to improving some aspect of the social or economic life of a population.
Fundamentally, Bahá’ís believe that every member of the human family has the right, as the noble soul that they are, to benefit from a prosperous world, and each person also has the responsibility to contribute towards the construction of such a world. The way forward is found by encouraging a growing number of people to participate in a collective learning process. Only as we approximate universal participation in this enterprise can we hope for true success.

“While social action may involve the provision of goods and services in some form, its primary concern must be to build capacity within a given population to participate in creating a better world.”
— The Universal House of Justice

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Engaging in discourse: transforming society at the level of thought

Working toward unity and social justice requires changing not only individual and collective behaviors and attitudes, but also social structures and institutions. Transformation at both of these levels begins with reshaping the intellectual foundations that underpin existing behaviors and structures. In other words, society needs to change at the level of thought. This is the focus of the Baha’i community’s efforts to engage in public discourse.

Recognition of the principle of the oneness of humankind necessitates the abandonment of prejudice of every kind—race, class, color, gender, creed, nationality, age, material wealth—everything that people have used to consider themselves superior or inferior to others. From this perspective, unity is seen as the essential starting point, rather than as a distant goal that would be achieved only after battling societal ills and injustices one by one.

“The well-being of mankind, its peace and security are unattainable unless and until its unity is firmly established.”
— Baha’u’llah



A Cycle of Study, Consultation, Action & Reflection

Baha’is and their friends engage in systematic learning involving cycles of study, consultation, action and reflection. They study moral and social principles found in the Baha’i writings, consult on and carry out action plans, reflect together on results and repeat the cycle to build a collective body of knowledge.

A Spiritual Path to Unity & Social Justice The Baha’i Faith in America

Walk with us!

Explore concepts that are working to translate love into action―such actions as deliberately going out of our way to befriend all, appreciating the indispensable contributions of all, and joining hands with all in the creation of a new world
Walk Together

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Channeling the Power of the Human Spirit

What is a spiritual framework for social change? How is it different from efforts pursued by political parties or educational and advocacy organizations?

For one thing, justice requires universal participation. Social change can’t be an effort by one segment of humanity to impose its vision on another, however altruistic the motivation may be. The divisiveness that characterizes current party politics must give way to cooperation. In a society that reflects the principle of the oneness of humankind, we must leave behind a concept of power as a means of domination or superiority, based on contest, contention, division or cultural difference. The Baha’i framework is intended to release, encourage and channel a different kind of power: the power of the human spirit, the power of unity, of love, of humble service, of pure deeds. From this perspective, power is not a finite entity to be seized and jealously guarded; it constitutes a limitless capacity that resides in the human race as a whole.

“The fundamental purpose animating the Faith of God and His Religion is to safeguard the interests and promote the unity of the human race, and to foster the spirit of love and fellowship.”
— Baha’u’llah

The essential elements of the Baha’i framework include:
  • Building The oneness of humanity
  • A two-fold moral purpose
  • This framework identifies three partners in driving social change: The individual, The institutions & The community
  • Four core grassroots activities
    • Devotional gatherings (all ages)
    • Children’s classes (ages 5–11)
    • Junior youth groups (ages 12–14)
    • Study circles (age 15–adult)
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bahai house of worship construction

bahai house of worship construction

Learning in Action

Baha’is are engaged in civilization-building work—a civilization that no one has ever seen before. Since no one has ever seen such a society, we need to be humble and approach this task with an attitude of learning, starting with small efforts in our own neighborhoods. Clearly, no single group has the answer to humanity’s ills, otherwise, we would already be living in the world we envision. Together with their neighbors, Bahá’ís set out to learn what contributes to the material and spiritual progress of their neighborhood. They work alongside others to discover together how the Word of God can generate the profound transformation that is required both of the individual and of the structures of society.

Walking a Spiritual Path

The Baha’i teachings emphasize that each person is responsible for his or her own spiritual development. While Baha’i institutions offer guidance and support, and the Baha’i community is a source of love and encouragement, the responsibility for engaging with the Word of God and for spiritual growth ultimately rests with each individual. The Baha’i institute process facilitates this study and growth.

A person’s spiritual journey can be considered as walking a path accompanied by others.
It is a path open to all of humanity—a path, Baha’is believe, that will allow us to build a better world together.

Tracing A Path Toward Unity, 1844 to the Present:

    • The Baha’i community is at the beginning of a long journey toward the oneness of humanity. Here you can see how far we traveled and join us in blazing the trail forward.

A Spiritual Path to Unity & Social Justice The Baha’i Faith in America

Walk with us!

Explore concepts that are working to translate love into action―such actions as deliberately going out of our way to befriend all, appreciating the indispensable contributions of all, and joining hands with all in the creation of a new world
Walk Together

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