In the summer and fall of 2004, I gradually came to the conviction that the Baha’i Faith was no longer worthy of my allegiance. Realizing that I had to remove myself from that community outright as a matter of honor, I wrote the following letter:
To the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of the United States,
After years of investigation and soul-searching, I have finally come to the sad understanding that I can no longer bring myself to believe in Baha’u’llah or any of the institutions established in His name, including the Guardianship and the Universal House of Justice. I am totally convinced that the Baha’i Faith is doomed to fail in its mission to bring peace, unity, and a Golden Age to humanity and I therefore resign from my past membership in the Faith. Goodbye.
I composed that letter on my computer and mailed it in January of 2005. A few weeks later, the NSA replied that they had accepted my resignation and expressed hope that I would one day decide to return. That looked like denial to me, so I dismissed it and threw away the letter. Then I cut completely all personal ties to the Baha’is in the Fort Worth area.
Soon after this, I began my relationship with Cheri, the woman that would later become my wife. According to Baha’i law, I would have needed the consent of both her mother (her father was already deceased), and my BIRTH (not adoptive) parents to be married to her. Ironic, considering that many Baha’is have non-Baha’i parents who may even be racist, and thus object to their children marrying members of a different race. The stupidity of that idea should be obvious. Parental consent should only be an issue if the married partners are still minors. Once they are ADULTS, they should be treated like adults, period.
My future wife was a member of First Baptist Church of Dallas, a stronghold of fundamentalism. I decided that if she wanted to marry me, she would have to leave that church, because I would never join it and she still wanted us to worship together on Sundays. Instead, I asked her to join with me in First Jefferson Unitarian Universalist Church, which I had belonged to before. She agreed! We were married the following year. Eventually, what started as a compromise between us grew into a case of full blown allegiance to the UU church for both of us. Cheri came to love the freedom of thought in that church, despite still being a strong Christian, while I came to love the powerful community the church provided, despite my agnosticism.
For the first few months of our marriage, Cheri and I shared a home with my parents, until we had enough money to move out on our own. When we did, I left behind at the house most of the Baha’i books and other literature I had collected from my eight or nine years as a Baha’i. Later, my mother, who was always hostile to the Baha’i Faith because of her Baptist convictions, took those items and discarded them all without my consent. At the time, I didn’t care. I would later realize how useful those books could have been as weapons against my former religion, but I also was able to find enough online resources for my purposes.
I stayed silent about my defection from the Baha’i Faith until October 19, 2007, when I posted my first blog entry attacking it.
Without the support of the UUs at First Jefferson Church, I might have never had the courage to do battle against the corrupt, idiotic Haifan Baha’i Administrative Order as I have done. They and other UUs are destined to do the work of peace, unity, and freedom that Baha’is cannot and will never do! My life and Cheri’s together are proof that it can work!
- The Universal House of Empty Rhetoric (dalehusband.wordpress.com)