Association for Bahá’í Studies North America

Access to knowledge is the right of every human being, and participation in its generation, application and diffusion a responsibility that all must shoulder in the great enterprise of building a prosperous world civilization—each individual according to his or her talents and abilities. Justice demands universal participation.

The Universal House of Justice

Inspired by a framework that emphasizes justice and the oneness of humanity, the Association for Bahá’í Studies promotes inquiry within the sciences and humanities to advance thought and practice that address the needs of contemporary society. The activities of the Association are open to all, with a particular focus on those engaged in academic, scholarly, and professional discourse.

Guiding Principles

A new stage of collective development

Humanity has reached the threshold of a new stage of development, one characterized by a growing awareness of the interdependence of humankind and its implications for the life of society. This requires new capacities for collaborative learning at the individual level, within communities and in social institutions.


The knowledge that must enable humanity to flourish will attend to both the material and spiritual dimensions of human life; it must draw on the faculties of reason as well as faith. The generation, diffusion and application of knowledge is essential to the creation of a more just and equitable society.


Every person has a role to play in the generation of knowledge and in the betterment of society. Collaborative inquiry, animated by principled deliberation to investigate reality, fosters the exchange of diverse ideas, enriches understanding, and generates new knowledge.

Learning in action

Through an ongoing process of action, reflection, study, and consultation, individuals and communities address obstacles and share successes, re-examine and revise strategies and methods, and systematize and improve efforts over time.


Scholarship and engaging in discourse for the purpose of the betterment of society is carried out in a spirit of service. Individuals accompany one another in their efforts, fostering mutual encouragement.

The House of Justice looks to rising generations of Bahá’ís to wholeheartedly address a wide range of intellectual challenges, overcome all pitfalls and obstacles, and render service for the betterment of the world. In the decades ahead, then, a host of believers will enter diverse social spaces and fields of human endeavour. To this arena, pregnant with possibilities, the Association for Bahá’í Studies can offer an important contribution.

Universal House of Justice, July 23, 2013