Current life notes

Systematic approach to improve my life and thereby indirectly hopefully the lives of those around me

Taking notes of new insights seems to be appropriate in order to start applying to the way I live and organise my days and activities.

Entry 1: 5.8.2010

Being a ‘registered’ student again has helped me to takes notes of new insights. It only seems normal to apply this strategy to my others aspects of life. Being a Bahá’í shapes all of my life and my struggles to apply what has been written into action. We organise on a regular basis devotional meetings at our home and we show pictures of beautiful scenery, together with music and in between prayers and passages from Bahá’í Writings. This morning I read some pages on ‘The Human Intellect: A Bahá’í-inspired Perspective’ by Adrian John Davis, Lights of ‘Irfán. Davis quotes Abdu’l-Bahá’ on how one practices using the Intellect?

Bahá’u’lláh says there is a sign (from God) in every phenomenon: the sign of the intellect is contemplation and the sign of contemplation is silence, because it is impossible for a man to do two things at one time — he cannot both speak and meditate. (Abdu’l-Bahá’, Paris Talks, p. 174)

Shoghi Effendi has said this about meditation:

As to meditation: This also is a field in which the individual is free. There are no set forms of meditation prescribed in the teachings, no plan as such, for inner development. The Friends are urged – nay enjoined – to pray, and they also should meditate, but the manner of doing the latter is left entirely to the individual.

The same thing is true of teaching methods; no system for teachers to practise exists. But obviously the more people know about the teachings and the Cause, the better they will be able to present the subject. If some people find that prayer and placing all their trust in God releases in them a flood of inspiration, they should be left free to pursue this method if it is productive of results.

The inspiration received through meditation is of a nature that one cannot measure or determine. God can inspire into our minds things that we had no previous knowledge of, if He desires to do so.

We cannot clearly distinguish between personal desire and guidance, but if the way opens, when we have sought guidance, then we may presume God is helping us. (Shoghi Effendi) (Compilations, Principles of Bahai Administration, p. 10).

These reflections have led me to encourage in our devotional meetings the concept of silence, tranquillity and reflection. It may not be helpful to be bombarded with pictures, music and text. Leaving space and time for silence may be a way to improve the quality of our devotional meetings. Let’s try and see! The subject of meditation may well be worthwhile considering.

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