To mark Baha'i New Year, an international conference will be held at Hebrew University, Jerusalem on Baha'ism, Judaism, Christianity & Islam
To mark the Baha'i New Year on March 21, an international conference will take place at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem on 'Modern Religions and Religious Movements in Judaism, Christianity, Islam and the Babi-Bahai Faiths'.
"The circle of Baha'i believers is expanding every year – especially in the Western world," says Prof. Moshe Sharon, the conference organizer and head of Baha'i Studies at the Hebrew University. "The number of Baha'i believers has been increasing by about four percent a year, and in recent years there has been an increased penetration into new areas in eastern Europe."
The Baha'i faith is a monotheistic religion founded by Bahá'u'lláh in nineteenth-century Persia, emphasizing the spiritual unity of all humankind. There are currently about six million adherents of the Baha'i faith around the world, of which 250,000 live in Iran, the birthplace of the religion's prophets. The largest Baha'i population can be found in India.
The Baha'i Faith is the world's only religion run by a local, national and international administration. The Baha'is' World House of Justice sits on Mount Carmel in Haifa. Haifa and Acre are the holy cities of the Baha'i faith, and the Bab himself, the first founder of the religion, is buried in Haifa.
Lectures and sessions during the conference include: 'The spread of the Baha'i faith from East to West', 'A 19th century Zoroastrian-Baha'i dialogue', 'The Bab and the Babis – Early accounts in the Western press 1845-1851' and 'Promoting sexual equality through education: Baha'i girls' schools in Iran'.
Other lectures include 'Stretching the borders of religious legitimacy: Baha'is and latter-day saints in China', 'The Bydzhov Israelites and the Frankists – Two sects in 18th century Bohemia', 'Jewish Christianity in 20th century Russia as a form of Jewish national revival' and 'The promise of Monotheism'.