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Compiled by Marlene Macke, St Marys, ON, Canada

 

 Definitions

A belief that human values are determined by race, that one race has supremacy over another; prejudice or discrimination based on race.  –  A Basic Baha’i Dictionary

The assumption that the characteristics and abilities of an individual are determined by race and that one race is biologically superior to another; a political program or social system based on these assumptions.  –  New Webster’s Dictionary

Effect of Racism

“Racism, one of the most baneful and persistent evils, is a major barrier to peace. Its practice perpetrates too outrageous a violation of the dignity of human beings to be countenanced under any pretext.  Racism retards the unfoldment of the boundless potentialities of its victims, corrupts its perpetrators, and blights human progress.”  –  The Promise of World Peace, October 1985, p. 7

“All prejudices, whether of religion, race, politics or nation, must be renounced, for these prejudices have caused the world’s sickness. It is a grave malady which, unless arrested, is capable of causing the destruction of the whole human race. Every ruinous war, with its terrible bloodshed and misery, has been caused by one or other of these prejudices.”  –  Paris Talks, p. 146

Oneness of Humanity

“So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female created He them.  Then God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply….’”  –  Bible: Genesis 1:27-28

“Say ye: “We believe in God, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Ismá’íl, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to (all) prophets from their Lord: We make no difference between one and another of them….”  –  Qur’an: 2:136 ‑ Al-Baqarah

“O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise (each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things).”  –  Qur’an: 49:13 – Al-Hujurat

“O Children of Men!  Know ye not why We created you all from the same dust?  That no one should exalt himself over the other….  –  The Hidden Words, Arabic #68

“All humanity are the children of God; they belong to the same family, to the same original race.  There can be no multiplicity of races, since all are the descendants of Adam….  We are of one physical race even as we are of one physical plan of material body; each endowed with two eyes, two ears, one head, two feet.”  –  Abdu’l-Baha in Canada, p. 19

“World order can be founded only on an unshakeable consciousness of the oneness of mankind, a spiritual truth which all the human sciences confirm. Anthropology, physiology, psychology, recognize only one human species, albeit infinitely varied in the secondary aspects of life.”  –  The Promise of World Peace

“The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens.”  –  Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah, CXVII

Preserving Inherited Cultural Identities

“Baha’is should obviously be encouraged to preserve their inherited cultural identities, as long as the activities involved do not contravene the principles of the Faith.  The perpetuation of such cultural characteristics is an expression of unity in diversity.”  –  The Pupil of the Eye, p. 71

“It [the unity of the human race] does not ignore, nor does it attempt to suppress the diversity of ethnical origins, of climate, of history, of language and tradition, of thought and habit, that differentiate the peoples and nations of the world.  It calls for a wider loyalty, for a larger aspiration that any that has animated the human race.”  –  The World Order of Baha’u’llah, pp. 41-42

Contributing to the solution

“Let the white make a supreme effort in their resolve to contribute their share to the solution of this problem, to abandon once for all their usually inherent and at times subconscious sense of superiority, to correct their tendency towards revealing a patronizing attitude towards the members of the other race, to persuade them through their intimate, spontaneous and informal association with them of the genuineness of their friendship and the sincerity of their intentions, and to master their impatience of any lack of responsiveness on the part of a people who have received, for so long a period, such grievous and slow‑healing wounds. Let the Negroes, through a corresponding effort on their part, show by every means in their power the warmth of their response, their readiness to forget the past, and their ability to wipe out every trace of suspicion that may still linger in their hearts and minds. Let neither think that the solution of so vast a problem is a matter that exclusively concerns the other. Let neither think that such a problem can either easily or immediately be resolved. Let neither think that they can wait confidently for the solution of this problem until the initiative has been taken, and the favorable circumstances created, by agencies that stand outside the orbit of their Faith. Let neither think that anything short of genuine love, extreme patience, true humility, consummate tact, sound initiative, mature wisdom, and deliberate, persistent, and prayerful effort, can succeed in blotting out the stain which this patent evil has left on the fair name of their common country. Let them rather believe, and be firmly convinced, that on their mutual understanding, their amity, and sustained cooperation, must depend, more than on any other force or organization operating outside the circle of their Faith, the deflection of that dangerous course so greatly feared by `Abdu’l‑Bahá, and the materialization of the hopes He cherished for their joint contribution to the fulfillment of that country’s glorious destiny.”  –  The Advent of Divine Justice, p. 40-41

A hundred times more consideration

“It is difficult for the friends to always remember that in matter[s] where race enters, a hundred times more consideration and wisdom in handling situations is necessary than when an issue is not complicated by this factor.”  The Pupil of the Eye, p. 87

Tremendous Effort Required By Both Races 

“A tremendous effort is required by both races if their outlook, their manners, and conduct are to reflect, in this darkened age, the spirit and teachings of the Faith of Baha’u’llah.  Casting away once and for all the fallacious doctrine of racial superiority, with all its attendant evils, confusion, and miseries, and welcoming and encouraging the intermixture of races, and tearing down the barriers that now divide them, they should each endeavor, day and night, to fulfil their particular responsibilities in the common task which so urgently faces them.”  –  The Advent of Divine Justice, pp. 39-40 

The Races As Jewels

“In the clustered jewels of the races may the blacks be as sapphires and rubies and the whites as diamonds and pearls.  The composite beauty of humanity will be witnessed in their unity and blending.  How glorious the spectacle of real unity among mankind!  How conductive to peace, confidence and happiness if races and nations were united in fellowship and accord!

In physical bodies, in the law of growth, in sense endowment, intelligence, patriotism, language, citizenship, civilization and religion you are one and the same.  A single point of distinction exists – that of racial colour.  God is not pleased with – neither should any reasonable or intelligent man be willing to recognize – inequality in the races because of this distinction.

But there is need of a superior power to overcome human prejudice, a power which nothing in the world of mankind can withstand and which will overshadow the effect of all other forces at work in the human conditions.  That irresistible power is the love of God.”  –  Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 68