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Bahá'í Perspectives on Agriculture and Food

Examine Bahá’í teachings on agriculture, food, rural development; relate this to public discourse; explore how agriculture can be incorporated in community-building

Social Transformation
7 weeks
Weekly Study
Feb 8-Mar 28
Register By
February 13, 2023

Bahá'u'lláh described agriculture as "a vital and important matter" that was foremost among the principles "conducive to the advancement of mankind and to the reconstruction of the world” (Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh Revealed After the Kitáb-i-Aqdas 90, 89). Yet current agricultural policy often prioritizes yield and profit over health, sustainability, and sociocultural features of rural communities, while the poor struggle to even feed themselves, and climate change makes farming increasingly unpredictable. These and other factors threaten food security. In Bahá’í Perspectives on Agriculture and Food, we will examine the teachings of the Bahá’í Faith on agriculture, food, and rural development; relate these teachings to contemporary public discourse on these issues; and suggest ways in which agricultural activities can be incorporated into core activities, community-building, and emerging social action.

Required Text

The Spirit of Agriculture by Paul Hanley (George Ronald Publishers) must be purchased for this course.

An electronic version of this book is available on Amazon (US$ 9.99).

Meet Your Faculty
Kimberley Naqvi, PhD
Lecturer/Instructor, Thompson Rivers University

My teaching and research focus is in the cultural basis of development and economic theory and practice, and analysing related urban and rural settlement, production, and consumption patterns. Whenever possible, I teach with both local and international context so that students evaluate their own perception of local and international geographies.... See Faculty Bio

Neil Whatley
Agronomist, Researcher

Neil has 35 years of experience with crop-based agriculture and community development. He has worked with agronomy, applied research and rural development in Western Canada and overseas. Raised on a farm in Saskatchewan, after high school Neil co-managed the farm forseveral years. He worked as a rural developer and systems... See Faculty Bio

Arthur Dahl, PhD
President, International Environment Forum

I have always been a Bahá’í, loved nature since I was taught about it in children’s classes, and set my goal to become a Bahá’í pioneer at the conference launching the Ten-year Crusade in 1953. I was finishing my Ph.D. in marine biology in 1969 when the Santa Barbara oil... See Faculty Bio

Gary Reusche, PhD
Co-Manager, Virtues Project in Ukraine; Rural Development Specialist

Gary is a social and economic development worker living in Ukraine. Combining a PhD in agricultural science with an MBA in management, he managed projects in Central America, Africa, South Asia and the ex-Soviet Union. During the past 20 years, Gary used consultation in his work and teams. While working... See Faculty Bio

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