Education and Capacity Building
Updated: Oct 30, 2021
Regard man as a mine rich in gems of inestimable value. Education can, alone, cause it to reveal its treasures, and enable mankind to benefit therefrom. -BAHÁ’U’LLÁH
The Bahá'í belief in the inherent nobility of each human being is intimately connected with the conviction that education, both material and spiritual, has the power to manifest the potential nobility within each person and, most importantly, benefit society. Over the past few decades, the worldwide Bahá'í community has developed an educational programme that seeks to cultivate the vast and powerful potentialities inherent in every human being. Guided by the principle and goal of universal participation, this educational programme combines personal reflection and group study with acts of service in the community. Those who participate in this educational programme encompass diverse ages, faiths, worldviews and backgrounds. It is through collaboration with people of all perspectives that greater insights into the teachings of Bahá’u’lláh emerge, furthering the realisation of the oneness of humanity. All are warmly invited to contribute to this process.
Bahá’ís regard children as the most precious treasure a community can possess. In them are the promise and guarantee of the future. This promise is dependent on the type of education that is imparted to our children. In addition to the pursuit of academic knowledge, the Bahá’í community places great emphasis on the spiritual nourishment of children, focusing on the development of spiritual qualities, such as truthfulness, generosity and kindness. Classes that foster their spiritual education and development take place in neighbourhoods and villages across the World.
Young people play an important role in our society. Although sometimes depicted as problematic, the Bahá’í community sees within them altruism, a keen sense of justice, eagerness to learn and a desire to contribute to a better world. Throughout the world, young members of the Bahá’í community, together with their friends, participate in neighbourhood groups that focus on developing mental and spiritual capacities, fostering the desire for service, and assisting them to navigate through this crucial period of life. Through a participatory mode of learning, these young participants come to see themselves as agents of positive change in the world.
Together with friends and neighbours, Bahá’ís gather in homes and other informal settings to study and reflect upon the Bahá’í teachings pertaining to individual and societal progress. Through the study of a sequence of courses, spiritual insights are gained and practical skills and capacities developed that place service at the heart of our lives. Participants of the educational and community building process are naturally inspired to translate insights gained into endeavours that contribute to the material and social wellbeing of their communities. In various settings and at all levels of society, Bahá’ís are working shoulder to shoulder with diverse groups to contribute in the areas of social action and public discourse.