Guest Post

by David Maytan

 David’s Notes on the Talks by Mr. Grossmann at the Swedish Baha’i Winter School

 January 5-8, 2011

 During Mr. Grossmann’s opening remarks, he mentioned that he had a consultation with the Universal House of Justice about what was appropriate for him to share with the Friends at the German and Swedish Winter Schools.  All that he will say comes from the Writings, the messages of the Universal House of Justice and his consultation with the Universal House of Justice.   Remember that Mr. Grossmann was a member of the Universal House of Justice between 2005-2010 and a member of the ITC 20 years before that.

 He stated that The Lesser Peace will be established by 2021 (war forbidden) and that by then, the leaders of the world will gather to investigate alternatives after a period of great suffering and will turn to the Baha’is to reorganize the world as the Baha’i Faith has shown only to be of service to mankind and is already established around the world.  The new Baha’i ‘troops’ will then join in even in greater numbers.

 Wednesday afternoon-

1996 Universal House of Justice establishes a new direction for the world in which the first phase will stretch to 2021 and focus on large expansion.  The Universal House of Justice states there will be 2 developments:

1)       The development of the believers – individuals, community and institutions developing systematically.

2)      Development of the world which is presented in the Ridvan 1997 message.

 Between 2010 and 2021 all efforts must intensify.  The Baha’is have to be equalizers in the world.  The old world order is destroying itself. The new world order is under reconstruction.

Within these 25 years entry by troops will be established all over the world.  At first certain areas will grow faster and then other areas will follow.

During the next 10 years we need to redirect our efforts, establish a new mind-set, become more service-minded and become political (non-party) in offering alternatives to society.  The Baha’i Community must be seen in society and perceived as service-minded and offering alternatives for a better society where well-being of all mankind is safe-guarded.  The lesser peace will be established by 2021 when world leaders recognize that only the Baha’is offer a world system established all over the world which is service-minded and concerned for all people’s well-being.

 The task of the Baha’is during the next 10 years is to become healers.  First heal oneself and then others.  We must become healers of the spirit.  Use ‘Abdu’l-Baha’s example.

 The greatest hindrances to well-being now are the established incompetent administrators and practitioners – the party politicians and religious leaders.

We need to realize we have the insights and the power through His will.

 It was ‘Abdu’l-Baha’s visit to the west that made the new world order possible.  He said the combination of the east (spiritually devoted) and west (logical) will build a firm foundation.  Because of ’Abdu’l-Baha’s visit we learn how to build the new world order.

 Shoghi Effendi said the forces released by the Central Figures have to be channeled to be a flow for the Baha’is.  This is the purpose of the administrative order.  The administration is the channel for the flow of the spirit of the Central Figures to the Baha’is and rest of the world.

 We need to be ready – we are not ready yet.  As an example – during the financial crisis of 2008-10 the Universal House of Justice felt that the Baha’i world was not ready to assume responsibility for the order of the world, so temporary solutions were allowed in order to give the Baha’is more time.  There will be future crises where no temporary solutions will be found and we need to be ready.

A local exampleThe Baha’is of the Marshall Islands were asked by the government to take over the school system.  The Baha’is said, ‘sorry, we are too few and inexperienced.’

We Baha’is need to become politicians (not party politicians) ready and willing to assume responsibility for social services and change the world.

 Thursday 10 am

 Shoghi Effendi began to establish the administration 1921-1931.

1931 – It was called for the first time The Administrative Order of Baha’u’llah.

1932 – He wrote a letter stating that the world is in crisis.  The Baha’is should improve conditions by deepening themselves and then develop in the Baha’i schools processes for adaptation.

Read Gleanings 44:2 to understand a better concept.

Luke 11:2 The Lord’s Prayer – “Thy kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven.”  All are invited.

An early example:  in 1908 ‘Abdu’l-Baha developed a small illiterate community in Sangesan, Iran and during 2 years it became the crème of society.  This example was offered to the Shah who rejected it and forbade it.  (He did the same inKenosha,WI)

Our job now is to reconstruct the world – we need to know the answers and solutions – financial, environmental, political, etc.

Our goal is to achieve the unity of mankind – practically and spiritually.

 Thursday 11:30

 Unique about the Baha’i Faith is the awareness that mankind will receive at least 509 manifestations of God.  9 thus far and one every thousand years for the next 500,000 years.

 The Lesser Covenant – God’s covenant with His believers.

Jesus said to Peter – upon this rock I will build my church.  This didn’t happen because of Paul.

Islam – same problem with Ali and Omar, creating Shiites and Sunnis

 Now the lesser covenant assures continuation of guidance through the Central Figures and now the Universal House of Justice.  There will be constant change.  It is easy to become a Baha’i and difficult to remain a Baha’i as one is always changing and learning.

 ‘Abdu’l-Baha confirms there are 2 utterances of Jesus which are authentic in the Bible – The Sermon on the Mount and The Lord’s Prayer.

 The Universal House of Justice will constantly provide guidance as society changes.  It has conveyed infallibility.  God will inspire them with what He willeth.

 The old world order began its process of declining faster 1996-2000.  Ridvan 2000 points this out.  We need to develop intensification and systemization.

 Thursday evening – presentation of Abdu’l-Baha’s visit to the West

 Abdu’l-Baha’s most outstanding achievement was his travels to the West.

None of the past messengers of God achieved peace because of the priests (religious leaders).  Baha’u’llah will achieve peace.

Abdu’l-Baha established the foundation for the unity between west and east combining spirituality with logical thinking.  This made it possible to establish the foundation for peace so future manifestations can build on spirituality.

Abdu’l-Baha created the first administrations in theUSA–Kenosha,WIand a small part ofChicago.

The West would not have an understanding of Baha’u’llah without ‘Abdu’l-Baha’s visit.  He was good at explaining Baha’u’llah to the west.  His best talk was in Palo Alto, California at Stanford University.

He stated that 4 things will happen which will allow world peace:

      1)  Mothers will not allow their sons to go to battle

      2)  Banks will refuse to finance war

      3)  Transportation will refuse to transport soldiers and artillery

      4)  Soldiers will insist that their leaders go first into battle.

 In the US He was known as Mr. Allright (when He was asked to do something or go somewhere He would also answer, ’all right’.  He had super human powers and could read minds.  He knew what each person needed to hear for their well-being.  Phoebe Hearst built a large house for ‘Abdu’l-Baha including rooms for His entourage and a large meeting room allowing over 200 people to gather.   Address:  1704 NW St,  Washington,DC. 

His first talk was in Carnegie library – he said USA was spiritually poor and materially rich.

He spoke at the Library of Congress – Jefferson building.

Louis Gregory worked in the Treasury Department.

At16th street NWis the residence where several key people were invited like Alexander Graham Bell, Admiral Perry, etc. and Abdu’l-Baha placed Louis Gregory at His immediate right – the place of highest honor.

Friday 10:00

Abdu’l-Baha in Promulgation of Universal Peace says that Baha’is in the future will sleep 4 hours, pray and meditate 4 hours, work 4 hours, serve the Cause (society) – 8+ hours.

The Universal House of Justice has the right to elucidate – explain – not interpret the Writings of the Central Figures.  Ask the Universal House of Justice about matters where there are differences – obscure matters.  Many laws of the Aqdas are for the future – dowry, embalmment, criminal law, etc.  The Universal House of Justice focuses first on the political functions and then the spiritual.   Their messages flow first to the believers and then to the world.  The focus is on divine politics – Shoghi Effendi.  The Ridvan Message 2008 – maintains the honor of man.

Friday 11:30

The Universal House of Justice issues 2 forms of messages and letters.

Messages – always addressed to the Baha’is of the world and signed by the Universal House of Justice. 

These messages are highly important to the friends in 2 ways

1)      Short term – 1-5 years (ex)

2)     Longer term and future

Letters are written by the secretariat and mostly to National Spiritual Assemblies.

These are more specific decisions and always at least 5 Universal House of Justice members have approved the letter.

Messages from 1996

Century of Light – a review of the development of the Faith to 1996.

1996-2021large expansion period, entry by troops will happen country by country.  The Baha’is will not necessarily cause this.

When Baha’u’llah feels mankind has suffered equal to His own suffering then He will send the troops. (Mankind has had many times to accept His message since the Proclamation to the Kings and Rulers, through many crises and each time Mankind has refused.) 

 Baha’u’llah will not allow mankind to suffer more than He has suffered.

The Universal House of Justice will prepare the friends for this growth.

Assistance by Baha’u’llah to bring in the troops will come after suffering of large magnitude will occur in the world.

Training by the House to the friends will depend on the situation of the world.

Depend on friends of the Faith for growth – in all public interaction use ‘faith’ and not ‘religion’.

Ridvan 1998 – focus on 2 plans of God – major and minor.  The minor is the Baha’is reconstructing world order.

Ridvan 2000 – Process of learning through attitude of focusing on quality.

Ridvan 2001 – New mind-set.  Develop as Baha’is (not in terms of world around us)

Everything is movement with great effort forward.

Example:  picture a large boat where everyone is rowing upstream.  If one stops, the boat is caught in the current and one is forced backwards.

Ridvan 2002 – In this movement there are 3 core activities – devotional meetings, children’s classes, study circles.  Later came inclusion of junior youth classes.

Ridvan 2008 – Focus on the individual – be disciplined – establish friendships (neighbors, friends, family, colleagues) See honor and nobility in every human being.  We must learn to go out into society and relay the message.

Ridvan 2009Exhilarating!  The Baha’i community is in the ascending – early glimpses of a new way of being.

Title:  Community of the Most Great Name (definition The World Order of Baha’u’llah p 194), entry by troops – numbers will vary from country to country.  All walks of life will come to us – we should not focus on demographics.

Ridvan 2010 – Establish a process of knowledge (coming from learning) volition and action.

 Saturday 10:00

The House is the last refuge for a falling society.  There is no security in any of the world institutions.

Ridvan 2010 – Goal is to establish entry by troops.

In 1953 Shoghi Effendi stated that only after mankind had suffered would people enter the Faith in troops.

3 parts to Ridvan 2010 message:

1)     1 year plan – consolidation of achievements, teaching techniques improved

2)       Baha’i community building

3)     Guidance through darkest period in mankind’s history

Suffering is equal to greatness

 1)      Improved teaching ways – a)  converse with ease about Baha’u’llah and His history – what makes Him a manifestation of God.  B)  converse with others on the level of soul (not argumentative – loving mutual understanding)

2) Strengthening the Baha’i Communityindividual guidance 1998-2008

Community of the Most Great Name – work together, concerned about common welfare – financial, environment, health, governance, human rights, (1983 House wrote to USA NSA), participation in social action.

In working with society we convey the spirit of the Faith, not the Faith itself.  Society is interested in spiritual solutions – not religious solutions.  We must never have the intention to convert when working with society.

3) Suffering will change society.  Careful to not overstate the Faith.  Our watchword is humility – we offer perspectives and solutions – never insist.

During the period Jan-April 2011 – study the Ridvan 2010 message and Dec 28, 2010 message in order to be ready for the Ridvan 2011 message.

 Comment by Pukirahe

This is very important to me and perhaps to many other friends. So I place it here for the interest of people who have not got the chance to attend this Winter School. With Baha’i best wishes to all.


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10 Responses

  1. “Wednesday afternoon- The Universal House of Justice states there will be 2 developments:
    … 2) Development of the world which is presented in the Ridvan 1997 message.”
    I just read the Ridvan 1997 letter. I can’t identify anything about the development of the world outside the Faith. Can someone help me here? Is 1997 a typo?
    Kate Manifacier

  2. “Wednesday afternoon- The Universal House of Justice states there will be 2 developments:
    … 2) Development of the world which is presented in the Ridvan 1997 message.”
    I just read the Ridvan 1997 letter. I can’t identify anything about the development of the world outside the Faith. Can someone help me here? Is 1997 a typo?
    Kate Manifacier

  3. It is best not to put too much stock in what are primarily personal speculations, many of which are not well supported in the writings or the letters of the House of Justice. We do not know when the Lesser Peace will occur. Shoghi Effendi himself stated this explicitly: “All we know is that the Lesser Peace and the Most Great Peace will come. – their exact dates we do not know.” (from a letter to an individual believer in 1946). I find it difficult to imagine that the Universal House of Justice would make any statement – direct or oblique – that the Lesser Peace will be established by 1921. What they have said is that the state of the world will grow darker and that the Baha’is will intensify their activities and begin to have an influence on humanity. I caution against this tendency, which becomes especially strong in times of sociopolitical and economic difficulty, to predict the dates of specific events. Some Baha’is have been diverted by such things before – predicting the Most Great Peace in 1917, 1957, 1963, or the Lesser Peace in 2000. What we have to do is engage in the framework according to the guidance of the Universal House of Justice and use the spiritual power of the Faith.

    Also, ‘Abdu’l-Baha never spoke at the Library of Congress. He visited the Jefferson Building with Agnes Parsons’ husband, Arthur, who was the Chief of the Prints and Photographs Division. ‘Abdu’l-Baha saw the reading room and went through the stacks. Lest anyone doubt, please read Agnes Parsons’ diary. I work at the Library of Congress and have researched this.

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  6. He is clearly delusional
    you wait when it does not happen they will have an explanation about “we meant its foundations” or some such lame excuse

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  8. I think the dates are not known. 2021 may simply be a personal opinion of the speaker.

  9. It is unclear whether the notes are accurate. Nevertheless, while the perspectives of former members of the Universal House of Justice are no doubt accorded a certain respect because of insights that derive from their experience, such views are to be regarded by their fellow believers as matters of personal opinion and weighed in light of the Teachings.
    With regard to the timing of the Lesser Peace, Shoghi Effendi stated, in a letter written on his behalf in 1946, “All we know is that the Lesser and the Most Great Peace will come—their exact dates we do not know.”
    (From a letter dated 19 March 2012 written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to an individual believer)

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