Aspects of the Bahá'í Faith:
1973 until now: Lesbian,
gay and bisexual (LGB) issues.
(Note: This is not an official Bahá'í web site. It is
a section of the ReligiousTolerance.org web site)
Quotations, mostly taken from various Baha'i You Tube videos advocating gay equality:
"Ye are all the leaves of one tree, and the fruits of one branch." Baha'u'llah ("glory
of God") the founder of the Baha'i faith.
||"If love and agreement are manifest in a single family, that family will
advance, become illumined and spiritual." Abdu'l-Bahá, the first interpreter
of Baha'i teachings.
||"If religion becomes a cause of dislike, hatred and division it were
better to be without it..." Abdu'l-Bahá.
If religious beliefs and opinions are found contrary to the standards of
science, they are mere superstitions and imaginations; for the antithesis of
knowledge is ignorance, and the child of ignorance is superstition.
Unquestionably there must be agreement between true religion and science. If a
question be found contrary to reason, faith and belief in it are impossible,
and there is no outcome but wavering and vacillation. Abdu'l-Bahá. 1
||"Homosexuality according to the writings of Baha'u'llah is spiritually
condemned," Shoghi Effendi, the second and final interpreter of Baha'i
||"...the Faith does not recognize homosexuality as a 'natural' or permanent
phenomenon. Rather. it sees this as an aberration subject to treatment,"
Universal House of Justice, 1987-MAR-22.
"LGBTI Let us live in Peace." Text of a mask worn by a protestor in
Kampala, Uganda, seeking and end to persecution there of lesbians, gays, bisexuals,
transsexuals, transgender and intersex persons (LGBTI). Local Christian and
leaders from an inter-faith organization urged the government to arrest the LGBTI protestors.
2 A Baha'i representative to the inter-faith organization, acting independently of the Baha'i administration in Uganda, participated with the Christians and Muslims. The resident Baha'i Counselor in Uganda resolved the situation and the Baha'i community has not taken part in this controversy since that event.
The Baha'i faith and LGB issues:
The Baha'i Faith teaches that
homosexual behavior is unacceptable among its
members. Like many conservative faith groups, they believe that sexual activity is to be restricted to married couples, and that marriage can only be between one woman and one man.
Voting rights of some of some of their lesbian, gay and bisexual members (LGB)
who are out of the "closet" have been suspended; some memberships of the Baha'i LGBT community who advocate for equality have been
The Baha'i faith is in a unique position with regards to lesbians, gays, and bisexuals (LGB's) because:
Shoghi Effendi, the last person capable of changing the authoritative interpretation of its holy texts confirmed all that homosexual behavior, including that within same-sex marriages, etc. is unacceptable. He died without naming a successor.
- Human sexuality researchers, professional mental health associations, social workers' professional associations, and liberal religious groups have reached a near consensus that homosexual and bisexual orientations and behavior are normal and natural for a minority of adults, that homosexual orientation is discovered, not chosen, and is unchangeable in adulthood.
- One of the main principles of the Baha'i faith is their respect and adoption of the findings of science.
Thus Baha'i beliefs concerning sexual orientation are quite similar to those of the conservative wings of
Christianity, Islam, Judaism and other religions. They reject the findings of science on this topic, and they have no mechanism to change their position. Unless they can find a way of reinterpreting the words of their holy text so as to accept the findings of science, they will probably find themselves increasingly out of touch with reality on this topic, and lose both members and potential members.
Topics covered in this section:
Abdu'l-Bahá, The Promulgation of Universal Peace, Page 181, by various publishers. The copy shown is published by Baha'i Publishing Trust; 3rd edition (2007) Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
Peter Tatchell, "Ugandan gays demand freedom," Guardian newspaper,
Copyright © 1996 to 2018 by Ontario
Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Latest update: 2018-AUG-12
Author: B.A. Robinson