Baha’i Geeks and Environmentalists Unite!

SB in NYC going to DC for ABS/IEFIn the past 48 hours, I have traveled by bike, hybrid car, regular car, greyhound, subway, train, taxi and foot to get from Tatamagouche, through Amherst, Sackville, Fredericton, Montreal, Ottawa, Montreal (again) and New York City to arrive in Washington, D.C. and attend, speak, blog and mingle at the joint 33rd Annual Association for Baha’i Studies – North America/13th Annual International Environment Forum Conference.

Baha’i geeks from all disciplines generally flock Association for Baha’i Studies (ABS) conferences to bask in each other’s academic geekiness – sharing their research in all aspects of the Baha’i Faith and all abs logoaspects of everything else in light of the Baha’i teachings.  While an ABS conference can be heaven on earth for the Baha’i geek, it can also be horribly difficult because they are expected to choose one of many fascinating sessions that will be happening AT THE EXACT SAME TIME.

(Photo by Laura Mostmand)

I delivered one such simultaneous session at the 2007 ABS conference in Mississauga, Ontario and managed to dupe several people into choosing my session thanks entirely to the provocative title of my presentation and to the bribes I gave my friends that were at the conference.  It was called “‘Abdu’l-Baha the Environmentalist” and will probably find its way to this very website at some point in the future for those online who also like to be duped by the titles of things.

This year the theme is Environments, and the International Environment Forum (IEF) decided to invite itself over to have its annual conference in tandem with the ABS.  The IEF is a Baha’i-inspired network of environmental geeks who also tend to be geeky about the Baha’i teachings.

With everyone becoming increasingly concerned with our relationship with the earth and tired of easy answers – it is finally time for the Baha’i environment geeks to shine and present the research they have been doing into these questions and what the Baha’i teachings have to offer.

On Saturday afternoon, I will be presenting my honors thesis “Faith and Hope in Environmentalism in the Face of Climate Change” in the IEF session with my boringly accurate title to be offset by some snazzy slides and not one, but two Star Wars references. That’s right – two.  That’s right, this is the very same honors thesis that kept me up all night on campus all those months ago.

You (yes, you) will be able to follow the IEF section from the comfort of your basement by visiting the IEF’s conference blog – where I will likely do a little guest blogging myself.

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