Thursday, October 18, 2007

No need to go it alone!

I’ve always had in my mind that that having multiple core activities all occurring simultaneously in a given area is really the way that the framework of the Five Year Plan will be, “…applied coherently in all its dimensions in a cluster…”, but I thought, “how can I possibly pull off more than one core activity at a time?” I’d find myself thinking, “Well, if I have a study circle for my seeker friend who’s a single mom, then there’s also a need for a children’s class.” It was clear to me that having a study circle and a children’s class at the same time would act as supports to one another. Some parents would be attracted to the children’s class and then might join the study circle while their children were being taught, and some would be interested in the study circle and, like my friend, would only be able to participate if there were a simultaneous activity for her son.

Recently, I came across a story from the Lower Maine/New Hampshire (A) cluster about just this…having multiple core activities running together. I realized that what was different and successful about what they did had to do with collective teaching. The story below illustrates how a group of participants studying book 6 teamed up to provide a neighborhood with both a study circle and children’s class. The result was not only a multiplication of activities but also an increase in the energy and enthusiasm of their continued study of book 6.

“As a result of our learning in Ruhi courses, our group decided to have a neighborhood children’s class simultaneous to our study circle. Some of the kids were from non-Bahá’í families, whose mothers wanted to join us in the Ruhi training. Since we were in Book 6, we decided that each week one of the co-facilitators would tutor the Book 1 for the non-Bahá’í parents while the rest of us continued Book 6. This arrangement was not a desired action, but an alternative born out of sheer necessity. Currently there are three participants in Book 1, all of whom are not Bahá’ís. The spirit of the Book 6 participants and of the children’s class is so high that the Book 1 participants are in awe, or at least, that is what they pretend!! We as tutors were initially somewhat doubtful and apprehensive. But, so far everyone involved loves the process.”


Teaching blog said...

Oct 18, 10:25 AM

That’s great! It’s all about meeting the needs of the seekers. Remembering we were doing this process more for them “the community of interest” and not just ourselves.


Teaching blog said...

Oct 18, 10:32 AM

Yeah, actually, i’d say we shouldn’t be doing it for us at all. I mean, that’s where we get into trouble…if we are expecting something for us. We have to be completely detached from our service…especially detached from what the outcomes will be.


Teaching blog said...

Oct 24, 10:34 AM

One of the delagates at the 164 BE National convention in Canada, said… “the Ridvan (2007) Message, 2nd paragraph. Brought back a feeling that I had when the training institute was first being launched (that this “wasn’t for us” – that it was laying a foundation for us to accommodate large numbers of people). We are training ourselves to handle large numbers!
I believe this is how we must look at the Ruhi courses.

Bob |