And again, studies have shown different results: some researchers argue that one cup of coffee a day can benefit you — others disagree. Both alcohol and caffeine can be damaging to health and can be addictive according to studies even in moderation. A glass of wine or a small beer would not in the slightest hinder your path to spirituality. Is this not in any way fundamental, judgemental and goes against your core beliefs? While my Bahai friends have never shown any sign of discrimination towards gay people, it is still very alarming that a religion like Bahai, claiming to be the world religion, would not allow someone involved in a same-sex marriage to become a Bahai.
If this is not discrimination, than what is? Would you rather be sober and feel good about yourselves instead of opening your eyes at issues such as discrimination coming from the Bahai community? I do not wish to offend any of you, however, I am genuinely curious and passionate regarding this matter. In my understanding, the issue relating to alcohol is not that it is addictive, as anything and can become addictive, as addiction is not limited to a substance or physical intake but the issue with alcohol is the fact that it can quite easily affect ones sense of reason and judgement.
For someone to have a glass of wine a day with their meal in some cases may not affect their sense of reason or judgement, but ultimately perhaps it comes down to sacrificing something one may want for the greater good. That article that you promised months ago has yet to materialize. Did you forget or are you doing more research on the topic before publishing it? Back to this and a general issue of religious law.
Religious law is currently used only in several Muslim countries where Sharia is recognized as the source of and surpassing all law. I ask because every time a religion reaches a tipping point in a society before secularist ion kicked in said religion dominated a society and its laws. This can be any topic relevant to Bahai law whether alcohol, homosexuality, or any other aspect that would be problematic for people of other or no faith if it became public policy.
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Very interesting Article to read and learn. And by the way I believe all monotheist religions teaches us the same just in different words and adapted to the times they came for…. He pulled out his notebook and gave us 30 references from the Bible , both Old and New Testaments, which condemned the use of alcohol.
Is there a way you could email me that list? I would really appreciate it Richard! Hi Richard: me too please, if it is not too much trouble, or otherwise advise where and how to secure a copy. This is a fine article, but I feel that any such reference to the negative effects of alcohol should never neglect the science of addiction and at least briefly reference the processes that are necessary to rid oneself of said addiction.
Ridding oneself of addiction takes a long process of pain and honesty from the addicted as well as the ability to surrender our will to a higher power. It also takes support from a supportive community that allows the afflicted person to be open and to grow spiritually as they work to divest themselves of their addiction. In other words, the laws were created for us to become healthy, spiritual, and closer to our Beloved.
To imply that ridding oneself of addiction is simply a matter of never drinking or using again can have devastating psychological effects on the individual.
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Healing addiction, as Alcoholics Anonymous rightly asserts, takes a program of rigorous honesty. I can tell you firsthand that the only way out is to be absolutely open and honest about the addiction in order to deal with the multiple underlying causes of the addiction. Stigmatizing the addicted does not allow for this healing process to occur.
Just being told that we are not to drink or use drugs is not enough for those of us who are addicted. Simply put, addiction does not work that way. Unfortunately, the way addiction works is that just because one is not actively consuming does not mean that they are no longer addicted. They are clean, but far from sober. The sad fact is that without dealing with the addiction itself, it is bound to reappear in an even more dangerous level.
An extract from the writings of Shoghi Effendi on character and conduct
I was clean for 9 years but was still heavily addicted. As I did not deal with the underlying causes of my addiction, it was bound to return in a much more nefarious incarnation. We addicts and alcoholics are particularly prone to feelings of guilt and shame. For me, it has taken a great deal of prayer and personal reflection to come to the understanding that even though the community might blame and stigmatize me, the God that I believe in does not. I am sick but I am not bad.
They will come from all walks of life. They will be from all kinds of cultures, economic backgrounds, and religions. We welcome that.
Religion on the Healing Edge: What Baha'is Believe
Many, like me, will come bearing the heavy burden of addiction. Will we openly welcome them as well? Thank you for your open and honest feedback about this article Theo, and for sharing your personal experiences with us. A community, like an individual, also has to go through its own process of growth, and sadly this process often means individuals are tested along the way. I really like what you said:. I just want to say how interesting and enlightening many of your comments are.
Now here are my two cents on this topic…. As a scientist, the first thing we are trained in doing is to not just read the conclusions of a study, but also to really understand study design and methods of analysis. Many people see an article in a high impact journal and from a credible university, and automatically trust all its conclusions. This, however, is a fatal flaw. Although we are all human…we have teeth, hair, a particular gender identity, we cannot be judged as uniform. Simple, genetics! This is clear evidence that due to alternate levels of gene expression for particular liver enzymes or proteins involved in metabolism, different people respond in different ways to specific chemicals.
That being said, nobody can tell anyone that moderate drinking, for example, will harm them. But also, we cannot say drinking wont harm someone. Get it? No one size fits all, which seems to be a constant expectation of people from scientific research. As we discover the complexity of the human genome from person to person even , this becomes a mere fantasy.
Bahá'í Faith and gender equality
I checked out the article first hand before having any sort of opinion. First thing I saw was that this study was published in the Journal of Neuroscience. Great journal! I view the literature in that journal with high regard. I then dived into the findings and the methods employed to do the study, and the first thing I noticed was that the study was done in Sprague-Dawley rats.
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As I mentioned to you before, different people respond to differently to specific chemicals in terms of metabolism. Because we are all different, which not only is from our environment, but also genetics. I do agree that there are many people that should never take a drink, due to their predisposition to alcohol abuse. Also, remember to not judge others and to not hold your ideas as the holy grail. As Naysan has noted, we are all as individuals and communities struggling and striving in varying degrees of development and maturity. For those who are addicts, members of the community may have no clue about the medical aspects of the addiction issue.
These problems are like several others in the sense that only those who have suffered from them or professionals who treat these issues can truly know the full ramifications. A medical professional would not advise that addicts quit cold turkey several different kinds of addictive substances unless this is done in a medical facility under professional supervision.
Related Religion on the Healing Edge: What Bahais Believe
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