Extrovert/intravert

extrovert

: one whose personality is characterized by extroversion; broadly : a gregarious and unreserved person

also I have heard that an extrovert gets their energy from other people, instead of isolation as an introvert.

However you put it i am a extrovert. But how does this relate to being in the Bahá’í community?

So much of this blog has become about me explain my relationship with the community and how i relate as a Bahai; very damaged but still a Baha’i.

I am in a community of people I wouldn’t hang out with normally a natural gravitation runs in our culture. This creates difficulties! It seems many of us play in very, very different fields and sometimes I just want to take my toys and go play by myself!

I know that that is one of also the benefits of this faith expanding our comfort zones into areas we had never contemplated.

One of the things I know about myself is that when I am nervous or uncomfortable I talk continuously. I seem to do a lot of talking at Baha’i events. Making me a great test for some of the other believers. But sometimes just trying to stay active in community life is a very large test for me.

The energy we expend in enduring the intolerance of some individuals of our community is not lost. It is transformed into fortitude, steadfastness and magnanimity.

(Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 603)

One of the greatest problems in the Cause is the relation of the believers to each other; for their immaturity (shared with the rest of humanity) and imperfections retard the work, create complications, and discourage each other. And yet we must put up with these things and try and combat them through love, patience and forgiveness individually, and proper administrative action collectively.

(Shoghi Effendi, The Unfolding Destiny of the British Bahá’í Community, p. 449)

The Cause is manifest, it shineth resplendent as the sun, but the people have become veils unto themselves. We entreat God that He may graciously assist them to return unto Him. He is, in truth, the Forgiving, the Merciful.

(Bahá’u’lláh, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 79)

The friends must be patient with each other and must realize that the Cause is still in its infancy and its institutions are not yet functioning perfectly. The greater the patience, the loving understanding and the forbearance the believers show towards each other and their shortcomings, the greater will be the progress of the whole Bahá’í community at large.

(From a letter dated 27 February 1943 written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer)

The current quest is to find a few people just to be with, who are OK with my quirky nature. To find a relaxed posture. I hope to find path of service with them, because even the Baha’is I don’t get along with that Is what ties us as a community. How do we serve Bahá’u’lláh and humanity?

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Memory of my Dad

When i was in my teens a event was planned called Hands Across America (yes i am dating myself.). The Baha’i youth planned on going downtown to participate but said i couldn’t go with them. The organizers had put a call that people were needed in areas outside of town. My dad said if you are going to help you go to the place in most need. So the whole family went out to edge of town with a small group of other people, connected by ropes.

Everyone downtown was on the news, a big party, snaking through the streets, and we were out in the heat and sun, barely able to reach each other.

Go where the need is!

Now i remember this as my daughter is seeking a veterinary internship outside the US. The door that opened for her was not a premium one but a spay/neuter clinic in Puerto Rico. I feel my dad’s hand in this guiding her as he does me.

walking dead

Do you watch The Walking Dead?

Every day

they walked on the street

with meth and heroin

In their veins

ecstasy rolls through them

drunk on the

latest bottle

Holes eaten in their brain

until they can’t think

or reason

it is only the next fix

they look for

they are

The Walking Dead

they are the ones

who drugs replace their

soul

A reflection – I did my best

1Blessed is the spot, and the house, and the place, and the city, and the heart, and the mountain, and the refuge, and the cave, and the valley, and the land, and the sea, and the island, and the meadow where mention of God hath been made, and His praise glorified.

2 (“Bahá’í Prayers: A Selection of Prayers Revealed by Bahá’u’lláh, the Báb, and `Abdu’l-Bahá”, 1985 ed. (Wilmette: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1985))

As i try and move into the next phase of my life i keep going over my past and my decisions. Wondering was i right did i make the right choices.

O maid-servants of the Merciful! It is incumbent upon you to train the children from their earliest babyhood! It is incumbent upon you to beautify their morals! It is incumbent upon you to attend to them under all aspects and circumstances, inasmuch as God – glorified and exalted is He! – hath ordained mothers to be the primary trainers of children and infants. This is a great and important affair and a high and exalted position, and it is not allowable to slacken therein at all!

~Abdu’l-Baha: Education, p. 290

When i left high school i wanted to be a graphic designer but i got pregnant during classes with my son. By the time i finished school Zac was two months old and we went to join my husband at the time up in Denver. I couldn’t work with a baby and no support network.

The marriage fell apart quickly but not before i got pregnant with my daughter. By the time she was born we were separated.

After returning to New Mexico i tried to find work as a graphic designer but i only found direct care work. I had kids to feed, No time to be picky. But I lost that job and went back to school. as a single parent I was able to graduate with a BA in media arts and the kids survived, actually they did very well.

My second husband and i were married, he stepped in, and became DAD. He is not easy to live with but his devotion to my children makes it tolerable.

I went to work at the news station as an editor and photo journalist, that only lasted for three years. The news the lack of sleep and my in ability to detach from other people and their pain. Not enjoying the suffering of others that some people in the newsroom seem to thrive on. at that exact same time I was also taking care of my mother as she declined in to the Mensha dementia., Two teenage kids, and uncaring job, and a mother going crazy sent me right over the edge.

I came back from that and tried construction. Well that ended with a fall, a bad fall.

1 Comfort thy mother and endeavour to do what is conducive to the happiness of her heart….

2 (`Abdu’l-Bahá, “Tablets of Abdul-Bahá Abbas”, vol. 1 (Chicago: Bahá’í Publishing Committee, 1930), p. 74

So for the last 10 years I took care of my mother until her death, my kids into adulthood and regained my health. All the while lamenting not having a paycheck. we hold so much value on earning of a paycheck, with no value of those who take care of the home and the family. My self-worth was tied up with the bringing in the money. But I did good.

3 We have caused thee to return to thy home as a token of Our mercy unto thy mother, inasmuch as We have found her overwhelmed with sorrow. We have enjoined you in the Book “to worship no one but God and to show kindness to your parents”. Thus hath the one true God spoken and the decree hath been fulfilled by the Almighty, the All-Wise. Therefore We have caused thee to return unto her and unto thy sister, that your mother’s eyes may thereby be cheered, and she may be of the thankful.

4

5 Say, O My people! Show honour to your parents and pay homage to them. This will cause blessings to descend upon you from the clouds of the bounty of your Lord, the Exalted, the Great.
When We learned of her sadness, We directed thee to return unto her, as a token of mercy unto thee from Our presence, and as an admonishment for others.
Beware lest ye commit that which would sadden the hearts of your fathers and mothers. Follow ye the path of Truth which indeed is a straight path. Should anyone give you a choice between the opportunity to render a service to Me and a service to them, choose ye to serve them, and let such service be a path leading you to Me. This is My exhortation and command unto thee. Observe therefore that which thy Lord, the Mighty, the Gracious, hath prescribed unto thee.
(Bahá’u’lláh, from a Tablet-translated from the Arabic)