Welcome to this site…it’s a work in progress!
For over 100 years, the Bahá’í community in the United States has sought to build a model of racial integration and race unity, embracing people from all backgrounds and classes of society. Bahá’u’lláh, the founder of the Bahá’í Faith, wrote in the mid-1800’s: “Close your eyes to racial differences and welcome all with the light of oneness.”
This process is not easy. Indeed, the Bahá’í writings identify racism and prejudice as “the most challenging issue” confronting the United States. The Bahá’í community in the US has consistently struggled through the beauty and pain of racial integration since the moment Bahá’u’lláh’s teachings spread to the Western hemisphere. Whatever shortcomings individual believers have had in these efforts, the primary Figures and institutions of our Faith have never once wavered from their injunction that we eliminate all forms of prejudice from our lives.
I created this site for two reasons:
1. To create a centralized space on the internet where one could easily get an overview of the important and central role that Black Americans have historically played in the development of the American Bahá’í community.
2. To demonstrate the dedication to race unity that marks every era of the Faith’s growth in this country, both from the efforts of individual white and Black believers, as well as from the counsels of our higher institutions.
The oneness of humanity is the central organizing principal of the Bahá’í Faith. Our unique history of implementing this principle in the context of the US spans from the Jim Crow era, to the Civil Rights era, and now into the Obama era. Almost a century ago, ‘Abdu’l-Baha said “To bring the white and the black together is considered impossible and unfeasible, but the breaths of the Holy Spirit will bring about this union.” (The Power of Unity, p 31)