the power of introverts in the baha’i faith

Recently, I came across a new thread on Reddit’s Baha’i group on a very interesting topic: introversion, and how introverts can find their path of service in the Baha’i community. The post’s author, /u/_valleyone_, introduced his question in the following way:

“As an introvert, I have struggled to find my role in the Baha’i faith. I have struggled to find ways to serve. All of the expectations and opportunities presented to me are heavily geared toward extroverts, and it appears I am not alone. While the Baha’i faith rightly focuses on unity and consultation, these do not always have to be found in extroverted fashion. […] Let me get to my main question for all of you: How do you think introverted Baha’is can best serve the faith? Can we compile some ideas for other Baha’is? Can we come up with ways to introduce introvert-friendly functions?”

I can definitely understand where /u/_valleyone_ was coming from—active participation in the training institute process, for example, does tend to entail a lot of going out and meeting and talking to new people, making phone calls, scheduling, and so on. I’ve served as a teacher of Baha’i children’s classes for many years, and that definitely entails a lot of work with others: teaching the children, close follow-up with parents regarding their children’s progress, and more. So it’s not surprising that some people just find it challenging to take leading roles in supporting the institute process or the core activities of the Five-Year Plan.

So, as people do on Reddit, the folks on /r/bahai came through, responding with a plethora of great ideas on how introverted people can go about serving the Baha’i community. Do you know of other ways that introverted people can be of service to the Baha’i community, or to their greater community? Leave a comment here, or on the original post on Reddit.

  • Newsletter editor
  • Treasurer
  • Auditor
  • Website maintenance
  • Sending text reminders about activities
  • Helping to coordinate activities by email
  • Hosting activities organized by others
  • Cooking/food prep
  • Cleaning
  • Gardening/maintenance
  • Creating art
  • Teller for elections
  • Librarian/bookstore manager
  • Event photographer
  • Minutes keeper
  • Being the recording secretary of a spiritual assembly
  • Archivist
  • Statistical officer
  • Attendance taker
  • Materials and logistics
  • AV person
  • Keeping an eye out for people who seem like they feel uncomfortable or out of place
  • Praying for others
  • Attending and supporting devotional meetings
  • Keeping track of time and notifying the chairperson
  • Calendar maintenance
  • Printing materials for study
  • Writing essays/blogs about the Faith and your belief
  • Planning Holy Days
  • Seeking to connect with a very small number of people about your faith

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