Baha'i: The Interfaith Religion (1-26-14)

Bahai Tempe in Haifa, Israel       Every Friday night Sy Magidi opens his Georgetown home to build community among nearby interfaith friends. Adult Ed did the same on Jan. 26, inviting Majidi and neighbor Larry Chapman, both Baha'is, to speak about the weekly sessions and theircommon faith. "The Baha'i approach is not much different from Paul in Corinthians," said Magidi. "Our most sacred thing is each other."

Baha'i originated in 19th-century Persia and has more than 5 million members in 200 countries and territories. The Baha'i Scriptures feature such "divine messengers" as Jesus, Moses, Krishna, Buddha, and Mohammed. According to the Baha'i faith, all religions have the same source. Humankind is considered to be spiritually  "one." To support Baha'i universalism, Adult Ed's guest speakers cited the similarity of The Golden Rule in religions like these:

Christianity: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

Cofucianism: " Do not do to others what you would not like yourself.  Then there will be no resentment against you, either in the family or in the state."

Buddhism: "Hurt no others in ways that you yourself would find hurtful."
Islam: "No one of you is a believer until he desires for his brother that which he desires for himself."

Judaism: "What is hateful to you, do not do to others."

Hinduism: "This is the sum of duty: do naught unto others what you would not have them do unto you.

Zoroastrianism: "That nature alone is good which refrains from doing another whatsoever is not good for itself."

--By Ginny Finch. Photo by Kevin Webb.