The House of Justice has set a focus for the Association on creating opportunities for the friends to build their capacity to contribute to discourses in professional and academic fields from a Baháʼí perspective. The need for this seems clearer every day.
As one avenue for exploring this, reading groups are meeting this summer. They provide an opportunity for friends connected to specific discourses to advance their understanding together.
Open reading groups
The following reading groups are open to new participants. Please note registration deadlines below. Participation requires a level of commitment and investment of time and energy. The links will take you to a google form with details and the opportunity to register for the group. If interest exceeds capacity, preference will be given to those specified as the target audience.
Explore the alleged justifications and assumptions of the Knowledge Economy, focusing on the role of intellectual property laws and policies. Determine what role, if any, intellectual property has in building a "divine civilization" and the call for all people to engage in the generation of knowledge - both spiritual and material.
Please register by September 15
Facilitators: Mark Ighrari, Mojdeh Farsi, and Niky Bagley
Current and recent reading groups
Learn more about the reading group experiences at the conference share-out sessions
Explore some of the foundational assumptions within jurisprudence and the development of law, examine which are aligned with the vision of the Baháʼí Faith, and consider how we can assist in building a more aligned vision.
Facilitators: Zalman Stern-Sapad, Niky Bagely, Shirin Ahlhauser
Race, African Worldview and the Baháʼí Faith
Explore the concept of race through the lens of African worldviews with the aim of expanding our capacity to engage people of African descent about the Bahá’í Faith, to meet the Faith’s race-related mandates of of racial amity, racial harmony, and racial unity, and, ultimately, to advance Bahá’u’lláh’s visions of the oneness of humanity and justice.
Facilitators: Layli Maparyan, Sahar D. Sattarzadeh
The Role of Art
Consult on the importance of art in society, especially during the pandemic and explore Baháʼí-inspired concepts within the current art climate.
Facilitator: Veronika Trebesh
Teaching the Social Context of the Economy after the Pandemic
This group explores new discussion around the economy and social justice engendered by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and considers how it affects current teaching in the social sciences, and social action, as they relate to economic life.
Facilitator: Kim Naqvi
Justice in the Age of Globalization
We will examine the challenges that global interdependencies present to social justice, more specifically, the limitations set on justice by an outdated understanding of national sovereignty.
Facilitator: Martha Jalali Rabbani
Science, Religion, and the Generation of Knowledge
This reading group will consider the nature and complexity of the scientific process by exploring ideas in the history and philosophy of science, and the approaches, values, and tools that make it a means for systematically generating knowledge of the phenomenal world. It will then explore how to contribute to the discourse on the harmony of science and religion from a Baháʼí perspective.
Facilitator: Todd Smith
Business capital, access and justice
This group will explore the ways in which a businesses’ access to different forms of capital can advance justice and equity within communities. The reading and discussion will include an examination of how access to capital can be increased within business ecosystems, including an analysis of how practices, systems, and approaches that draw on collaboration and consultation to amplify opportunities to access capital.
Facilitator: Garrison Turner
2013 Knowledge into Action: The Bahá’í Imperative to Serve Humanity
2018 Navigating the Discourse on Race within the Politicized Landscape of Journalism
2015 The Nature and Dynamics of Oppression, Empowerment, and the Battle against Oppression