"Whiteness," bougiehood and Bahaism

The manner in which Bahaism has been packaged since the time of Shoghi Effendi has been an increasing packaging of whiteness. Whatever its pretensions to universalism etc, in every conceivable way, modern Bahaism reflects the values, practices, worldview and perspectives of the white Anglo-European secular bourgeosie. This was the case in Iran under the Pahlavis, which is why the Baha'is were front and center with the levers of power, wealth and influence in their hands under that regime. It has also been the case with the Iranian Baha'i diaspora in the West since 1979. 


While tokenism to other cultures and their fetishization is prevalent in Baha'i communities, the predominant weltanschauung and praxis subtly and no so subtly instilled by the groupmind within Bahaism is that of whiteness and white Anglo-European "middle-class" privilege. This also explains why Haifan Baha'is thrive under the globalized capitalism of the neoliberal stage that has taken genocide and ecocide to ever higher levels of barbarity, especially as ecocide is a uniquely Anglo-European perspective on the world which views Nature, the natural world and the biosphere as a dead commodity to be exploited at will since the notion of progress in this kind of ontology is in proportion to how Nature is controlled, harnessed and exploited for human benefit only (a doctrine which is one of the cornerstones of the so-called European Enlightenment and which looks upon people who do not subscribe to it as inferior). 'Abdu'l-Baha's opportunism and racism in his views on Africans, Columbus and Native Americans as recorded in his makatib from speeches he gave in America unequivocally attests to this.


As such, no matter what word games these people play and what platitudes of denial they may offer and how many koombayas they sing, however one cuts it, Bahaism is a paragon cult of white Western colonialism and the West's imperial colonization of the planet with the imposition (usually by force) of its own so-called European Enlightenment values (which are anything but enlightened). Therefore, Bahaism is whiteness exemplified. As a footnote, this probably also explains why so many white American and Iranian Baha'is online have been known to be friendly towards the alt-right as well as the pro-Trump crowd in recent times because the core of Baha'i praxis appeals to white supremacy. It also underscores why almost every Baha'i community looks, feels and acts like a white Protestant Christian congregation. But it also explains what drives the toxic and malignant Islamophobia that fuels the Baha'i mentality, and has done so from its very origins.

See also Charles W. Mills, The Racial Contract.

Popular Posts