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A Compilation on Scholarship

  • Author:
  • Various

  • Source:
  • Compiled by the Research Department of the Universal House of Justice, Bahá’í World Centre, February 1995
  • Pages:
  • 28
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Pages 22-23

64: “The House of Justice feels that Bahá’í scholars must beware of the…”

The House of Justice feels that Bahá’í scholars must beware of the temptations of intellectual pride. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá has warned the friends in the West that they would be subjected to intellectual tests, and the Guardian reminded them of this warning. There are many aspects of western thinking which have been exalted to a status of unassailable principle in the general mind, that time may well show to have been erroneous or, at least, only partially true. Any Bahá’í who rises to eminence in academic circles will be exposed to the powerful influence of such thinking. One of the problems of modern times is the degree to which the different disciplines have become specialized and isolated from one another. Thinkers are now faced with a challenge to achieve a synthesis, or at least a coherent correlation, of the vast amount of knowledge that has been acquired during the past century. The Bahá’ís must be aware of this factor and of the moderation and all-embracing nature of this Revelation….
In the application of the social laws of the Faith, most of the also from the actions of those who, while careful to observe the letter of the difficulties can be seen to arise not only from outright disobedience, but law, try to go as far as it will permit them away from the spirit which lies at its heart. A similar tendency can be noted among some Bahá’í scholars. The great advances in knowledge and understanding in the vital field of Bahá’í scholarship will be made by those who, while well versed in their subjects and adhering to the principles of research, are also thoroughly imbued with love for the Faith and the determination to grow in the comprehension of its teachings.
(23 March 1983 on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to an individual believer) [64]