The course provides biographical sketches of the Baha'i Faith's most prominent figures: The Báb (1819-50), Bahá’u’lláh (1817-92), ‘Abdu’l-Bahá (1844-1921), and Shoghi Effendi (1897-1957), as well as opportunities to explore their writings. It also illustrates the origins and development of the current head of the Faith, the Universal House of Justice, and shows how the House of Justice guides Bahá’ís around the world in their efforts to apply the authoritative teachings in their lives and local communities. Implications of this process for individual and social change will be explored in depth.
The course also explores basic theological concepts that will be further developed in the Bahá’í Theology course. Such concepts include the nature of God, God’s revelation to humanity, religious truth as both relative and eternal, religious law, and the journey of the soul.
Finally, the course traces the historical evolution of the Bahá’í community from its earliest beginnings in 1844 to its current state as the second most widespread religious community in the world, and among the fastest growing.
(Note: in fall 2021 the course was taught as "The Baha'i Faith: A Comprehensive Introduction")
[Auditors with faculty permission;20 max enrollment]