CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts — As the Baha'i community prepares to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Baha'u'llah, the Harvard Divinity School is also commemorating its bicentenary.
This confluence of noteworthy anniversaries has more in common than the mere overlap of dates. In the late 19th and first half of the 20th centuries, a number of eminent American philosophers, artists, and writers connected to both the Baha'i Faith and Harvard University were engaged in a dynamic, emerging discourse on unity.
D. Anthony Alvarez ’21, a member of the Harvard Latter-day Saints Student Association, has attended religious services at the same congregation off campus since he arrived at Harvard as a freshman.
This semester, Alvarez said he still attends services at that same congregation. Amid Covid-19, though, he must sign up to attend ahead of time, don a mask, and eschew singing, which can spread infectious particles.
History and Description: The Concord Bahá’í community has been meeting as a group since 1995, although there were Bahá’í families living in Concord and worshipping independently prior to the formalization of the assembly. In 2014, the Concord group formed a Local Spiritual...
Aliyah Marandiz, who grew up a member of the Baha'i faith, said that her religion influences her actions, her perspective and how she treats other people, much the same way any religion would.
Yet while many religious communities are grappling with how to talk about race in the wake of recent protests against racism and police brutality, Marandiz said she has seen her fellow Baha'i practice their core belief of eradicating racism through service to their community.
Hadar Cohen, Ala’ Khan, Maya Mansour and Jonathan Simcosky arrived as strangers, ready to embark on a new interfaith journey.
The four roommates moved into a five-bedroom, five-bath house in Los Angeles’ Koreatown neighborhood earlier this year. They come from different faiths: Baha’i, Christianity, Islam and Judaism. Cohen came from Jerusalem but had already lived in the Bay Area for a few years. Simcosky made the trek from Salem, Massachusetts, to L.A. Khan and Mansour were already in Southern California.
Young people across the United States who have been engaged in Baha’i community-building efforts are swiftly responding to a host of needs arising in their communities from the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“There are deep bonds of friendship between people that have for months or years been working together to contribute to social progress,” says Candace Vance, who follows Baha’i social and economic development activities of the country. “Because of this and the love they have for their communities, many young people are finding that they can’t just watch...
For Menaka Kannan, it was bad enough when she heard that a fellow member of New York City’s Baha’i community had contracted the novel coronavirus. But she was not emotionally prepared for the news that came roughly a week later: He had succumbed to the infection and died.
“The news of his passing, of course, is very shocking,” she said.
As the community grappled with the grief, a lingering question arose: How do you conduct a funeral in the midst of a global pandemic, when a healing hug is now seen as a potential death sentence?