Vernon Lawson sent me this via e-mail, and it is one of the best statements about the Bahai Faith I’ve ever seen:
There are limits to the expansion of the Baha’i faith, as currently practiced, and arguments can be made that the administrative order is not appropriate. However, if the Baha’i faith is ever going to grow beyond its current numbers, it is Baha’u’llah, and not Abdu’l Baha, Shoghi Effendi or the Universal House of Justice, who will reach the majority of people that currently have no knowledge of the Baha’i faith. He will reach them through the current believers. Yes, the majority of the current believers have great loyalty to a particular administrative order. However, their approach to spreading the word has proven particularly ineffective. If those more open minded people, who recognize that Baha’u’llah’s message is the message for today, spread the word more effectively that their administrative oriented breathren, then some day, maybe soon, the majority of Baha’is will not have this loyalty, or any concern about administrative orders. The ancient beauty is what matters here, not anything else. If we can reach just .2% of the human race, not exactly a tall order, then two thirds of Baha’is will not follow the current administrative order, and there could be some major changes in the way things are done. At 150 years into Christianity, the word had not gone far, primarily because they had not learned how to effectively market the faith yet. There is still hope for a significant growth of the faith. Go to any bookstore, and you’ll see more space dedicated to “New Age” than all the other religions combined. What else you’ll notice is NO Baha’i literature. That’s because the boys in Haifa are determined to control this thing. Fine, they have complete control of an insanely small order. If, and when, we ever get entry by troops, it will be because we blow this thing wide open. Nobody controls who, how, what gets translated, nobody controls distribution of the word. The word is for everyone. That’s when things can and will change.