Friday, August 18, 2006

Everything's

Coming Up

Bahá'í!


Bahai Temple Kampala.jpg

Africa's Bahá'í temple is located in Uganda on the outskirts of Kampala on top of Kikaya Hill. I'd seen photos of the structure and heard that the gardens surrounding it were beautiful, and I always wanted to make a visit to the temple (all Bahá'í Temples are open to the public), but for three years, I could never drag myself up to it. I decided that yesterday was the day. I kinda knew where it was, but I really did not know how to get there. It ended up being further away that I anticipated, and the road to get there was quite dusty. My friend, Charles, and I reached there just after 5:00pm, and the gates were to close at 5:30pm. We did a whirlwind tour of the grounds, and one of the guides allowed us to go into the temple. I wish we could've stayed longer; it was a very peaceful spot, and I would've loved to explore the gardens a bit more, but time. We were invited to come back for services on Sunday. My response was, "Perhaps." I know I will not be there on Sunday. Maybe I'll show up one day.

I'd never heard of the Bahá'í faith until I moved to Hoima, Uganda in 2002. I became friends with a tailor (actually, he became my stalker) who was Bahá'í, and he used to give me literature about his faith. I read a little about the persecution of people of the Bahá'í faith in the book Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi. Then in American Samoa, I taught a student whose family were Bahá'í. He would miss school for Bahá'í holidays, and his mother would always send me information explaining the holiday, so I learned a little about their faith as the year went on. I was even invited to their home one evening to celebrate one of their special days before their fasting began in March.

There are only seven Bahá'í temples in the world: Wilmette, Illinois USA; Kampala, Uganda; Sydney, Australia; Langenhain, Germany; Panama City, Panama; Tiapapata, Samoa; and New Delhi, India. All temples have nine sides and are topped with domes. For more information click the link: Bahá'í Temples

Outside of the Kampala temple was a display board which highlighted some of the main beliefs of Bahá'í. One of the cards on the display summarized their belief about the position of women in society.
The world of humanity has two wings; one is women and the other men. Not until both wings are equally developed can the bird fly. Should one wing remain weak, flight is impossible. Not until the world of women becomes equal to the world of men in the acquisition of virtues and perfections, can success and prosperity be attained as they ought to be.
(Selections from the Writings of Abdul-Bahaá, sec. 227, p. 302) [13]


Lovely.

6 comments:

Dana said...

Cool! That is a really interesting quote.

Chanakin said...

Fascinating. What a great read!

Nicole Ashley said...

There are no Bahá'í in Abilene. None. Whatsoever.

How sad. :-(

Dave2 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dave2 said...

Thanks for the tip, Timothy!

Anonymous said...

It is sad that a human being believes in a statue for faith or religion