Learner Shares “Time and the Bahá’í Calendar” with an Agnostic, a Christian, and a Bahá’í
Dimiter “Mitko” Gerensky, a Bahá’í from Bulgaria now living in Arlington, Virginia, and a learner in the October 2015 course on the Badí‘ (Bahá’í) Calendar: Reshaping Our Material, Social, and Spiritual Reality, shares his report about the project he chose to share what he learned about the Badí‘ calendar. He describes himself as “the proud father of two beautiful girls” and goes on to say that he tries to live his “life in honesty and integrity, to be aware of” his “weaknesses, to develop” his “virtues, and to be of service to God and His creation.” Dimiter’s invitation to his discussion of the Badí‘ calendar promised “a healthy dinner followed by a brief presentation on the Bahá’í calendar and readings of selected holy writings and prayers.” His aim was to “uplift and refresh” his guests’ “souls with inspiring musical selections.” The evening concluded “with tea and sweets.” Here is Dimiter’s discussion of the event.
- my housemate who is a Bahá’í;
- an AirBNB house guest from Australia who self-identified as a spiritual agnostic from a partially Jewish background who had no knowledge of the Bahá’í Faith but was a willing audience;
- a Christian friend of the Bahá’ís who has been attending Bahá’í events for a few months and is now coming to the weekly devotional gathering I host, has strong interest in astrology, and claims to have had a direct charter from Jesus to write a book but has never read the Bible in its entirety.
“As you can imagine, I had to be mindful of the background of the audience and started with a brief overview of the Bahá’í Faith. The historic summary of the different types of calendars, their connection to religious dispensations, and the continuity from religion to religion proved very helpful and intriguing to all. Dr. Moojan Momen’s article provided just the right amount of details. We also watched the video produced by the UK Bahá’í community, which solidified what we talked about and provided food for thought.
My Bahá’í friend observed that establishing the universal implementation of the Badí‘ calendar at the completion of 171 BE (19 x 9 = 171) was another interesting view at how many of things have a hidden meaning, but we cannot see them unless we have more background information.
The discussion was engaging for all participants, and we concluded with prayers and in agreement that, without acknowledging and nurturing the spiritual aspect of life, our existence would be close to meaningless.