this is the august update

youth triohey all you wonderful people. it’s been a long week and an even longer month, filled with lots of busymaking, vacationing, and picture-taking – and even some singing. you’ve probably noticed, but just in case, do pop by my flickr site to check out the latest photos and leave a comment or two. Along with updated vacation photos – mostly landscapes so far, more people shots coming soon – I’ve also posted some photos of the Super Ex, taken on the day I performed at the Joy of Faith concert with a musical group of Baha’i youth (well, mostly youth, with one youthful gentleman along for the ride).

It’s that time again. What time, you ask? Why, the time to get children’s classes in gear for the upcoming year. Our local coordinators have been kind enough to forward me copies of a pilot curriculum for Baha’i children’s classes, developed by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of Canada, based on the “Baha’i Education for Children” series by A. A. Furutan. I’ll be using the pilot curriculum as a framework for our children’s class (“our” because I’m not the only teacher, and because the class is starting to feel a little like a family to me), which will entail translating it into French and finding corresponding French-language activities to replace those that don’t survive translation. See baha’i children’s class ideas to follow the progress of the class this year.

Those of you who have been following the situation in the Middle East and who have wondered about the state and condition of the Baha’i World Centre and Holy Places in Haifa and surroundings will be pleased to know that, according to the most recent communication from the Universal House of Justice, “no damage was done to the Holy Places and that the friends here remained in safety, pursuing their tasks with steadiness of purpose and exemplary perseverance”. Of course, as has been noted by many people since this most recent outbreak of violence began, we must remember to keep in our prayers not only our friends at the World Centre, but also our many fellow human beings who find themselves innocent victims of this conflict. Perhaps now, more than ever, is the time to rededicate ourselves to championing the Cause of world unity and to teach peace all the world around (to borrow a turn of phrase from Red Grammer). Part of my efforts in this wise include my participation in the core activities of the Baha’i Faith, most notably the above-mentioned children’s classes. I’ve also had a strong desire to start a study circle that would allow friends, family and acquaintances to get together and exchange on some of these topics. If you’re in the Ottawa area and you’d like to get involved, please do let me know.

On a side note, I’m seriously considering returning to my earlier vegetarian diet, after a hiatus of a few years (induced by a knock on the head). I was originally a pesco-ovo-lacto vegetarian, which means I would eat fish, eggs and dairy products – I’m thinking I may become pesco-pollo-ovo vegetarian, adding chicken but cutting out dairy (since I definitely have lactose intolerance issues). Basically, that would make me semi-vegetarian, or “wishy-washy” as some might put it. Any feedback, comments, and encouragement you may have would be greatly appreciated – via email or comment on this post. And Martin, I already know what you think.

favourite vegetarian recipes

following up on Sam Benoit’s comment on the ‘bridgehead’ post, here are a few of my favourite vegetarian recipes. FYI, I used to be a vegetarian, and am still quite sympathetic to vegetarianism – and have been thinking about returning to that simple, balanced way of life recently. I’ll tell you all sorts of stories about how I came to put my vegetarianism on hold, though. Just ask me. I dare you.

  • kashke bademjoon – one of the greatest persian dishes of all time, and (sadly) one of the few vegetarian ones. (apparently there’s a vegetarian ghormeh sabzi recipe – neat huh?)
  • potato and pea curry – a favourite indian dish. I also tend to make a nice curry with sweet potatoes and broccoli… maybe I’ll post it sometime. btw, indian food is my favourite type of cuisine.
  • misir wot – or miser wat, or whatever. an ethiopian lentil dish; basically, as the recipe says, “spiced lentil mush”. the secret is in the berbere sauce, an african spice mix that can be difficult to find in North America (it’s worth it, though)
  • potato knishes – whenever I stop at a local bagel shop, I always grab a few knishes on the side. Potato knishes are the most common, but I’ve seen knishes filled with things like spinach, cabbage, and broccoli too.
  • artichoke and sundried tomato pizza – a mouth-watering mediterranean combination that packs a punch. try making it yourself – it should turn out less greasy than delivered pizza.
  • spinach lasagna – everyone loves vegetarian lasagna – even marty!

BTW: Are all Bahá’ís vegetarian? No, but the Bahá’í Writings look upon vegetarianism in a very positive light. Bahá’ís don’t have special foods associated with rituals or ceremonies; we eat all sorts of things, depending on where in the world we live. Check out some pictures of Bahá’í food.

veggies are good

Imagine my surprise when my generally carnivorous friend Martin forwarded me a link to this wonderful compilation of the Baha’i Writings on vegetarianism and the virtues thereof. I thought it so enlightening that I’d share it with all of you. Thanks Martin. You know we can always use more apologetics for this beautiful and simple way of life.

For those of you who don’t know: although Baha’is are not prescribed any particular diet to follow, the Writings of the Baha’i Faith praise vegetarianism as a natural diet that’s better adapted to the human body than meat-eating. Not too sure about that? Read up on it.

P.S. (10 PM): …and here are a few other veggie links for your perusal: veg.ca, run by the Toronto Vegetarian Association; the UK’s Vegetarian Society; VegWeb, a site with recipes; The Green Door, Ottawa’s original vegetarian restaurant; Le Commensal, a Montreal-based vegetarian restaurant chain that also sells its own line of veggie products; La Manne, a vegetarian grocery store/restaurant in my old digs, Victoriaville.

P.S. #2 (Monday): Check out this book from Publisher George Ronald — “I’ll have the Fruit and Grains, please!

stop the butchery!

how amusing. I just answered the phone and, by chance, responded in French. so this guy started talking to me in French about being part of a butcher’s shop that sells frozen meat. he was very polite and quite nice. he said that he wanted to meet with me to introduce me to his products and services. I said that that was nice, and that I was vegetarian. he said that that was nice and that he respected that, and wished me a good day. click.

I busted up laughing. that was funny. one more time I’ve cut a solicitation call short by telling the truth. truth pays off, boys and girls!

random ramblings

lettuce here isn’t that much more expensive than it is in Ottawa right now, according to Loeb Glebe anyway. yesterday I bought hydroponic leaf lettuce for 1.99, the same thing would have gone for 1.49 in Ottawa. okay, it’s way more expensive. but usually I would buy romaine lettuce, which is 1.69.

It seems that Victoriaville, on the whole, is less vegetarian-friendly than Ottawa. It is somewhat friendly, and I’m quite glad about that. La Manne [français] is a restaurant/natural food store, like a combination of The Green Door and Rainbow Foods. BTW, is there anyone reading this who doesn’t know that I’m vegetarian? Sorry. Now you know.

Anyway, not much happening this weekend, but on Monday I go take pictures at l’École du Manège, and in the evening I join a Ruhi Book 2 circle with Claire and company in Montreal. Woohoo! And yay sunshine! And yay disappearing sickness!