Forum: Bahá’u’lláh’s Teaching on the Equality of Men and Women

Copyright © Bahá’í International Community

The theme, “Bahá’u’lláh’s Teaching on the Equality of Men and Women” will be the focus of a forum planned for 24 June at Wollongong Bahá’í Centre of Learning, at 7:30 pm. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Men have traditionally assumed a superior station and role in society, and enforced this assumption by force, religious doctrines and legislation.  Hence, women have become the victims of inequality and injustice, and have suffered tremendously.  Unfortunately, this attitude has deeply influenced society and created subconscious feelings of superiority in men and inferiority in women.

For the first time in religious history, a Manifestation of God, Bahá’u’lláh, has emphatically proclaimed equality between the sexes.  He says “In this Day the Hand of divine grace hath removed all distinctions.  The servants of God and His handmaidens are regarded on the same plane.[1]

The equality of men and women and their complimentary roles in the family and society have been addressed in many Bahá’í Writings.  ‘Abdu’l-Bahá clearly indicates, “The happiness of mankind will be realized when women and men co-ordinate and advance equally, for each is the complement and helpmate of the other.”[2]  He also refers to men and women as the two wings of a bird:  “The world of humanity has two wings one is women and the other men.  Not until both wings are equally developed can the bird fly.  Should one wing remain weak, flight is impossible.  Not until the world of women becomes equal to the world of men in the acquisition of virtues and perfections, can success and prosperity be attained as they ought to be.[3]

The Bahá’í teachings have placed great challenges on both men and women to establish equality of the sexes.  Women are expected to “… attain greater perfection, to be man’s equal in every respect, to make progress in all in which she has been backward, so that man will be compelled to acknowledge her equality and capacity and attainment.”[4]

The equality of men and women as taught by Bahá’u’lláh nearly 150 years ago will be discussed in a forum planned for 24 June at Wollongong Bahá’í Centre of Learning, at 7:30 pm. Everyone is welcome to attend.

  1. Bahá’u’lláh:  cited in The Compilation of Compilations, Vol. II (Women), No. 2094, p. 358.
  2. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá:  The Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 182.
  3. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá:  Selection From the Writings, p. 301.
  4. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá:  Paris Talks, p. 162.

 

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