The term study circle
has become common terminology in the Bahá’í Faith
to describe a specific type of gathering for the study of the Bahá’í teachings
, with an emphasis on "promoting the well-being of humanity." Study circles are a form of distance learning designed to systematically bring education about spiritual concepts to the grassroots level. Because they are intended to be sustainable and reproducible on a large scale, study circles shy away from formally taught classes, opting instead for participatory methods. They are usually led by a tutor whose role is not to act as an expert but rather to facilitate the rhythm and pace of the study circle. In this way, attendees of study circles are expected to become active participants in their own learning process.
Today's featured individual
was a British orientalist who published many books and articles on the Bábí and Bahá’í religions. Browne was born in Uley near Dursley in Gloucestershire on February 7
and is best known to modern Bahá’ís for his description of his meeting with Bahá’u’lláh. Browne's scholarly reputation has endured until the present. His mastery of Iranian culture and thought has been equaled by few Westerners before or since, and his scholarship, as well as the eloquence and grace of his literary style, have given his works permanent value, even after great changes in scholarly methodology. The Iranians, despite their early suspicion about his interest in the Bábís, accepted him as a loyal friend for his scholarship, his political support, and his sympathetic understanding of their culture and literature.
I created thee rich, why dost thou bring thyself down to poverty? Noble I made thee, wherewith dost thou abase thyself? Out of the essence of knowledge I gave thee being, why seekest thou enlightenment from anyone beside Me? Out of the clay of love I molded thee, how dost thou busy thyself with another? Turn thy sight unto thyself, that thou mayest find Me standing within thee, mighty, powerful and self-subsisting.
, The Hidden Words