The evolution of our understanding

Youths and junior youths hang out at this past summer’s Junior Youth Week at Bosch Bahá’í School. Inset photo by Annabel Maldonado; background image by Robert Miramontes/Thinkstock

Articles written and compiled by Tom Mennillo

The most dynamic clusters are those in which … the friends appreciate that their task is to identify what is required for progress to occur … and then find creative ways in which the necessary time and resources can be made available to achieve it.”
— Universal House of Justice, Riḍván 2014

“My (our) current understanding is …”

Often, those words or a reasonable facsimile preface remarks made by Bahá’ís or on behalf of Bahá’í institutions.

That’s because our understanding of how to apply the writings to our lives and the needs of society is ever evolving.

We receive guidance. We put it into action. And when our experiences and the lessons learned are reported, fresh guidance issues.

Arenas of Bahá’í life in which our understanding is evolving include:

  • Learning from one’s own and from others’ circumstances
  • Remaking the concepts of success and failure through our experience with challenges
  • Adding to the overall body of knowledge

Throughout the stories of this package are woven expressions of all three.

How is the momentum from the 2013 youth conferences being sustained through an ongoing process of building young people’s capacity and channeling their energies?

How are people of all ages and backgrounds finding meaningful paths of service within the framework for action of the Divine Plan?

How are electoral units keeping convention consultation relevant, vibrant — even dynamic — in an age of cluster reflection gatherings and units comprising several clusters?

How are strategies being set in motion to aid progress in emerging clusters?

How are Bahá’í websites at the international and national levels evolving to create a unified model into which local websites can fit like a glove?

These and other questions are tackled. May the examples presented (see the “Related Articles” box at right) give you much to think about and act on as this Plan moves toward its conclusion.


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