Recently I revisited this profound quote from the Baha’i writings, and this time it penetrated my soul and made me clearly see what is happening all around us in every part of the world:
The vitality of men’s belief in God is dying out in every land; nothing short of His wholesome medicine can ever restore it. The corrosion of ungodliness is eating into the vitals of human society; what else but the Elixir of His potent Revelation can cleanse and revive it? - Baha’u’llah
He diagnoses humanity’s primary problem in two sentences and suggests the remedy. It makes me realize that humanity’s peace and salvation are in God’s hands – and in our hands, too.
We need to retain the great spiritual laws taught by all Faiths – while, at the same time, adjusting the social laws inspired by those religions to the needs of the time.
In recent times, I’ve found myself defending Islam from the criticisms of Muslims themselves – those who feel fed up with the mullahs and the fanaticism of some other Muslims and who no longer want anything to do with Islam as a result. Mounting that defence has proven difficult since most people cannot or will not differentiate mullahs’ actions from Islam’s inherent spirituality and essential teachings.
By the same token, I have defended Christianity from Christians who want nothing more to do with the priests and other Christians who have damaged the image of Christianity with their actions.
This has made me more determined to counsel disheartened Muslims, Christians, and followers of other religions, urging them not to “throw the baby out with the bathwater.” That’s where the rejection of religion generally comes from, in my experience – people cast doubt on the spiritual laws of their Faiths when they simply need to re-examine the social laws inspired by their religions, which are subject to change.
So the spread of irreligiousness today has added another role to the principal aim of the Baha’i Faith, which is to work towards achieving the oneness of humanity. Since the magnetism of religion is losing power and becoming more irrelevant in the eyes of the world, Baha’is defend each religion’s essence and the sacredness of the Holy Books and their Authors – because Baha’is believe that all religions are one. Therefore Baha’is defend the spirituality of all of the great religions.
Humanity needs to face the unprecedented crises of today with all of its spiritual tools at the ready, and its future rests on the degree of the unification of all countries and of all religions. Sadly, the pure water of the messages of spiritual healing has been combined with so many impurities that it no longer possesses all of its original healing qualities.
What the world needs today is not the destruction of all things sacred and moral in the name of freedom of speech and action. That sense of the sacred is the cause of our salvation – and it stems originally from the holy books of all religions.
Defending those spiritual values and the origin of those teachings in all religions is our moral duty. Since all Faiths are essentially one, they’re all part of our Faith. As I maintain friendships with people of different Faiths, I try to ensure that they know my respect for their Messengers, and their Holy Books, because they are all part of my religion.
Badi Shams is a Baha’i and a mystic at heart. His field of interest is economics; he has published "Economics of the Future" and "Economics of the Future Begins Today" and recently written the books "Random Thoughts of a Mystic Economist" and "Towards a New Spiritual Economic System." You can find Badi's website at badishams.net called "Baha'i Inspired Economics" He is retired from the education system.
You can read more articles on our interfaith blog. Spiritually Speaking, HERE: https://www.timescolonist.com/blogs/spiritually-speaking