Talk:Bahá'í divisions

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Shogomonian or Soghomonian?[edit]

Please make up your mind. 07:42, 18 March 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Rewrite of BUPC section[edit]

I've rewritten portions of the BUPC section to address some of the content that's not accurately reflecting what the few sources I have to draw upon actually say. Specifically:

1 Word for word from "Expecting Armageddon" it states in the "Summary of the BUPC on p.271 "In 1964, after becoming disillusioned with the infighting among Remey's followers, Jensen and his wife Opal moved to Missoula, Montana where they opened a chiropractic clinic." which I've used as an opening sentence. The previous version has no merit or reference, whereas this is WP:V.
2 Some time ago this sloppily worded unreferenced POV sentence was added: "According to Jensen, this title [of Establisher] signified a status higher than that of the Guardian, but lower than a Manifestation of God.". It's not accurate, verified, or derived from anything published but apparently the conclusion from the original research of Cunado, the sentences creator. I believe adding "what he called the Establisher" should suffice in establishing Cunado's desire to show this is not a station assigned in the Covenant, but one unique to Doc.
3 The statement summarizing the BUPC's teachings is a run on sentence and not wholly accurate, but again was the result of Cunado's POV from his own original research and not anything from a published source. I remember making at least a dozen attempts to reword this clear WP:OR previously, but to no avail, as apparently anything short of strict adherence to wording he creates is clearly deemed unacceptable and met with obstinate reverting. Our sources about ourself regarding views specifically about the Guardianship clearly state otherwise for which I've made the appropriate changes.
4 I've scaled back and toned down the previously mentioned specific issues Jensen made public about the UHJ from two sentences to this: "He believed the Universal House of Justice in Haifa to be flawed and fallible, as it is without a living guardian/executive, and by his interpretations not elected per Shoghi Effendi's instructions." This is here to establish why exactly he formed a new council to begin with, as it's not inherent to any other group. Firstly none of them has a Council w/ a Guardian, and 2ndly no other group has published this even if they agree with it. This has been discussed at length previously, but quoting him directly that "without the guardian, the UHJ in Haifa is a fake fraud and an imitation" was met with opposition, and this watered-down "flawed and fallible" idea that MARussell proposed was acceptable enough. Now Cunado is maintaining that his clearly well documented beliefs and reasonings about this have no place in a summary which is attempting to establish why he took the actions he did? Absurd. No such sentiments are expressed previous to this group summary, nor implicitly implied. Cunado apparently assumes that since all groups reject the UHJ these ideas are implied? This is a well documented point of contention specific to the BUPC, and nothing previously mentioned makes these specific allegations. There is no justifiable reason for repeatedly removing this long-standing poignant statement. If you'd rather me refer to the original wording to express this point about Haifa's UHJ being a "fake fraud and an imitation" I'd readily agree to that. Otherwise there's no way this wholly unique WP:V is being censured. Baha'i Under the Covenant (talk) 08:46, 8 February 2008 (UTC)
1, the fact that he was not re-elected is referenced in the first instance of saying it, above in the article. Expecting Armageddon is about what happened 15 years later, and the researcher has no authority about what happened in the disputes of the 1960s. In reality Jensen was part of the infighting, so to say that he left because of the faults of others is misleading. I chose to ignore the subject by just saying that he wasn't re-elected and left.
2, I didn't write that sentence, and you're right it's unreferenced and I'll leave it out.
3, The only thing I changed was the structure of the sentence. The only wording I changed from your version was removing "Along with the basic tenets of the Baha'i Faith", which is obvious and repetitive.
4, As I've mentioned many times, all these groups have an emphasis on the continuing guardianship, and it's obvious (and already in the article) that they all reject the validity of the UHJ established in 1963 in Haifa. There is nothing unique about Jensen's beliefs on the matter.
5, and the point you reverted back and didn't bring up on the talk page is the quotation of Spataro's book. He was a die-hard follower of Remey and is clearly biased, as noted by several book reviews you can find online. The statement you quoted was that the Universal House of Justice "abrogated the guardianship". His book is actually useful as a reference for events in Remey's life, but not for his personal opinion on the legitimacy of the House of Justice. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 20:49, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Your personal feelings and opinions about verifiable sources is irrelevant and will not be required for consideration. You have not cited anything from published sources to reject these contributions, but are proposing anyone give a care how you feel about VERIFIABLE and entirely on-topic and relevant statements. Child please. Baha'i Under the Covenant (talk) 22:45, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Clearly there's no justifiable reason for reverting my changes aside from how you feel about them. That's really too bad for you, friend. I'm just going to address these points you've raised as clearly and concise as I can, and if the spirit and intent gets lost in translation at least I've made the effort.
  1. Using ideas proposed in a Findings of Fact brief that are being debated, objected to, and yet to be ruled upon in an on-going unresolved court case fall several miles short of over-riding what a published source like Expecting Armaggedon have to say on the matter. As an aside it has been contended, and upheld by Frank Schlatter's testimony that Doc left the group before the 1964 elections, so I'd prefer to go with what Balch wrote (which I copied almost word for word) in Expecting Armageddon. This has nothing to do with whether or not "the researcher has no authority about what happened in the disputes of the 1960s". That's you POV, and your own original research is not welcome for contributions. Even less welcome are you uses of contested and objected to Findings of Fact briefs as a source to override what a well respected researcher stated in a published research paper. Your rewrite of the sentence doesn't at all reflect what the reference you left in place says. Balch's research doesn't require your own WP:OR to bolster the findings.
  2. I don't agree that "it's obvious (and already in the article) that they all reject the validity of the UHJ established in 1963 in Haifa.". Where *exactly* in the article are these sentiments expressed? I was right that you believe it's implied. Well this statement makes it explicit the reasons Jensen went forward and established a whole new council, and show how he solved this "obvious" dilemma. This thing is so watered down and sterilized and one-sided that little to zero justice is being served for these groups POV. You're not going to further sterilize the BUPC section of this article. This point has been there for over 3 years after a quasi-concensus was reached on it's wording. You can't justify this, so leave it alone. Baha'i Under the Covenant (talk) 00:54, 9 February 2008 (UTC)
The court document states initially "Facts set forth in bold-face type are agreed by all parties," so they are not debated, objected to, and yet to be ruled upon." Being a published source does not mean it has authority on any matter within its walls. A reference has to have authority on the subject that it's being quoted about, and the author is writing about Jensen's failed prophecies 15 years later. I reworded the section to be more neutral, I think you'll find it appropriate. In the same way Spataro is being quoted about the validity of the House of Justice, and it's not mentioned that he was a follower of Mason Remey. That is misleading, for one, and an unacceptable reference for the quote in question.
We've gone over this a dozen times. It is obvious and mentioned already that "All those that profess belief in Mason Remey as the second Guardian do not accept the Universal House of Justice established in 1963, but amongst themselves have a variety of opinions on legitimacy and the proper succession of authority." The first paragraph under "Further development of Remey's followers." This is a point that is not necessary to repeat under every section heading, and it's not a unique thing that Jensen came up with. Remey himself denied the validity of the House of Justice in 1963. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 18:11, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

If you're actually abreast of what's going on that proceeding, then stop misrepresenting it. That brief is from Joel and Frank's response to the NSA's accusations, whereas they are but one party in the court. The BUPC's response unequivocally rejects that very idea, and Frank Schlatter's own testimony stated that after the infighting that took place Jensen "LEFT THAT GROUP", so to say that he left because he wasn't re-elected it disingenous, not true, and rejected by eye-witness testimony. This is not a done deal, so POV statements like that Jensen and King weren't re-elected aren't appropriate.

We've not gone over this a dozen times regarding Jensen's beliefs about the UHJ. That statement stood for several years until your rewrite. This is explicit and not redundant, but entirely on-topic. You haven't presented anything in this discussion with any substance to justify any of this sterilization of the content. It's all about what YOU feel and believe is relevant. I'll thank you to leave be the cited statements of VERIFIABLE source, and give up the charade of why you think certain PUBLISHED DOCUMENTS don't deserve inclusion. Your POV and WP:OR are of 0.00 concern here. Baha'i Under the Covenant (talk) 19:52, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

The document is between the NSA and the Orthodox Baha'is, and the uncontested point was that Jensen was not elected to the NSAUHG in 1964. I wasn't trying to imply that he left because he wasn't re-elected, that doesn't matter, but your wording left the assumption that he wasn't part of the infighting, which is false. My rewording was neutral and only mentioned that he was on the 1963 NSAUHG, thus maintaining the connection. Being published doesn't mean that it has authority in any context or on any subject. I've mentioned this several times while you ignore the issue. By the way, linking to a policy page doesn't automatically make your argument correct.
I objected to your wording and placement of the sentence about Jensen's beliefs and the House of Justice a long time ago, but I didn't press the issue. Length of time on the page is irrelevant. In this edit I actually left in the points that you so desperately wanted, but improved the structure and wording. I have a feeling you didn't actually look at it before reverting.
Likewise, in the same edit I moved Spataro's reference to where it would naturally flow in the article, but you reverted. I have been civil and compromising since we started this issue a week ago, and you have called me a child and belittled me. This article is not worth your soul, so please get a perspective on things and focus on a resolution. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 08:59, 11 February 2008 (UTC)

I was operating under the assumption that you were abreast of the issues surrounding this court case, and I'm sorry that I implied you were acting in bad faith. The argument the NSA is making is that Jensen was acting in privity of the injunction, and our lawyers have objected to and established in several ways that Jensen left that group at the end of the 1963 fiscal year; something Schlatter testified to, Doc always maintained, and further supported by Balch's research paper. So naturally you can see that it does matter to some how something like that's worded.

Brian, I have nothing against your beliefs, your person, or your convictions. You are right, you have been civil throughout this discussion, but I'd say that "comprosing" might be a stretch. You reverted back to your original rewrite without compromise until only just last night, so let's call a spade a spade, shall we? I have been repeatedly harsh in discussions mainly because I feel that since day one (which was 11/05/05) I've been being attacked. That's the bottom line with where I'm coming from. I've never seen your actions here as in good faith or that you've extended that assumption to me. Frankly they words and actions all appear to me to be intent on marginalizing and minimizing to the absolute lowest denominator the beliefs of these groups. It doesn't help the mainstream's cause to constantly hold aloft this lily white facade you all are part of maintaining, IMHO. That aside, I do respect you beliefs, and admire your conviction. I'm sorry for belittling you in the process of making my points. I shouldn't react that way when I feel my concerns are being ignored. Thanks for taking them into consideration now. This isn't personal, but it seems easy to forget that. Cheers. Baha'i Under the Covenant (talk) 18:09, 11 February 2008 (UTC)

Resolve to condense BUPC section[edit]

It doesn't seem necessary or prudent to continually expand and add to the summary of the BUPC. As has been duly noted this should be a summary, right? As Cunado has recently reworded and expanded upon the already elaborate summary, I don't feel it should be of any surprise or unreasonable to expect that I would weigh in and wish to add clarity, or make adjustments? Yet I'm continually unilaterally reverted? How is this reasonable by any stretch? As we all seem to have the same resolve, these types of stand-offs are increasingly aggravating and unproductive.

Today I have attempted to condense certain elaborations, neutralize apparent POV wording, and fix the inaccurate wording about his predictions to reflect what those researchers actually wrote in the provided ref. Yet this series of edits is met with a unilateral revert? Undoing this improves the article how exactly?

I remain in opposition to removing the oft objected sentence regarding his specific issue with the sans-Guardian UHJ. It's mentioned previously that "All those that profess belief in Mason Remey as the second Guardian did not accept the Universal House of Justice established in 1963". IMO, this falls short of making Jensen's specific concerns redundant. For instance nowhere is it established or even eluded that anyone believed the UHJ was "not elected per Shoghi Effendi's instructions", so I object to removing that wording here. In fact it is implied that every detail in establishing the UHJ was done to the letter, which is something the BUPC vehemently object to. Furthermore none of the other groups have formed a legislative body to make up for the specific shortcomings mentioned, which is what these two sentences are establishing. Without this it reads to me like he had no good reason to form the sIBC, but with this concise statement it makes clear that he was doing what he did for a purpose. These specific allegations are mentioned nowhere previously, and yet are concisely relevant, and on-topic. I can see no good cause for removing them if the interest of this article is truly to reflect the various views.

I feel the section can be summarized efficiently, and is in need of the changes I've have made today to remain accurate and neutral. I'm perfectly willing and capable of addressing changes here and avoiding extraneous reverting. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 07:41, 22 March 2008 (UTC)

You're getting reverted because your edits are soft-selling verifiable facts and peddling POV positions regarding the current state of the BUPC. Jensen was not accused of sexual molestation and then convicted of something else — he was convicted of molestation as lewd and lascivious is the crime's name.
And, to an outsider, the latest in the string of Remeyite splinterings is by no means as cut-and-dried as your selling it here. MARussellPESE (talk) 11:30, 22 March 2008 (UTC)

If you could take a moment to look at all that you've unilaterally reverted, that would be swell. Could you be specific about what you think is my POV here? If I could ref. these things, which is easy enough, would that help? I have the same concerns; that your POV is dominating the content, and its lacking the alt. views. Please consider:

  1. the wording for his predictions doesn't at all accurately reflect what the source actually states. I've made the appropriate alteration and you reverted it back to Cunado's sloppy non-sensical wording.
  2. those are two different crimes in MT, and because those researchers carelessly tossed in that language you all are insisting both are included. The actual crime he was convicted of is in the one source, which if you were as sincere about accuracy as you claim would suffice. I can where you all are coming from here, and I'm not trying to suppress anything. But a conviction of molestation is a much harsher crime, which doesn't' allow parole in MT. He wasn't charged or convicted of that, but whatever. It's not big issue either way, except of course to you all.
  3. His Firesides tell his side, and it hardly seems unreasonable to mention he and his followers believe the charge was unjust. That is verifiable for which I provided a ref.
  4. You haven't addressed anything about my specific concerns about the UHJ concerns the BUPC have. Why, when I've fully elaborated our sound position above is this being ignored and removed?

Again, it would be just swell if we could work this out here, as we clearly all have the same willingness and resolve to unilaterally revert each other. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 16:12, 22 March 2008 (UTC)

True "Lewd and Lascivious" doesn't exist anymore in the Montana Code. Today, the code appears to be much more streamlined. Now the conviction would be for sexual assault (MT 45-5-502) and he'd be required to register as a sexual offender for ten years minimum after release (MT 46-23-506). So "child molester" is not a conflation of his conviction.
Re-read WP:UNDUE. NPOV does not mean you get equal time. So extended treatment of BUPC visions of the UHJ are POV. As your wildest membership numbers aren't 1/1000th of the Baha'i community's you'd have a hard time getting disinterested parties to recognize the BUPC as more than a "tiny-minority". That's borne out by the silence of any research into the BUPC beyond the doomsday curiosities.
Jensen's firesides aren't WP:V so they aren't of use, even if they had a place. MARussellPESE (talk) 21:58, 22 March 2008 (UTC)
The prediction about the comet was that on the day mentioned Haley's comet would lose its normal orbit and begin to circle around the earth, changing tides and generally wreaking havoc while dropping debris. Exactly one year after the date, the comet was supposed to collide with the earth. My summary was "begin to collide with the earth on April 29, 1986" and your version was "begin to be pulled apart and pelt the earth on April 29, 1986". Mine is more accurate, in that it mentions a collision with the earth. It is not a "sloppy non-sensical version."
Regarding the oft removed phrase about his objection with the UHJ, I think it is not only mentioned that all the Remeyite groups object to the UHJ, but it is clearly mentioned in the section that Jensen believed he was chosen by God to re-establish the Faith after what he considered to be a corruption of the system. The oft removed phrase is poorly worded, and appears to me to be nothing more than a POV jab at the House of Justice, unrelated to the story of Jensen. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 01:57, 23 March 2008 (UTC)

Some clarifications and revue of these policies being tossed about is apparently in order, for they are being entirely misrepresented here.

  1. From Undue weight- "Minority views can receive attention on pages specifically devoted to them". Furthermore Jimbo states that tiny minority views do not belong in articles "except perhaps in some ancillary articles". I don't thinks anyone would argue that this is an ancillary article? Views of these groups would not be appropriate on the Baha'i Faith page, but to suppress them here is a violation of policy. This policy clearly states the EXACT OPPOSITE of what MARussell alleges it states: "Views that are held by a tiny minority should not be represented *except* in articles devoted to those views". This is an articles summarizing the views of the groups found in it, so it defies logic to argue that their stated beliefs which spurred their separation don't warrant inclusion. Not only does it defy logic, but also the stated policy. This policy has been unfairly leveraged to make the case for expanding all the details for why these groups are misguided and mislead (which is divergent from its intended purpose), while at the same time being used to suppress their criticisms. Invoking this policy every time inconvenient criticisms wish inclusion in this *ancillary* article specifically devoted to these minority views is not how this policy is to be exercised, and will no longer be a consideration for inclusion of matters regarding these groups stated *views*. Case closed PER POLICY.
  2. As far as "Jensen's firesides aren't WP:V so they aren't of use" I believe a review of the policy is also in order: "Material from self-published and questionable sources may be used as sources in articles about themselves". As the only purpose for the ref was to verify that the ON-TOPIC claim that he "attempted" to teach new believers his not only that his conviction was unjust but the it led to him fulfilling prophecy. It hardly seems unreasonable to mention he and his followers believe the charge was unjust. Not only is it what he taught and what we believe, but there are extensive teaching materials maintained by the BUPC to verify this is true. Case closed PER POLICY.
  3. As far as the prediction the wording I chose was practically word for word off the page that was referenced, so if this is so darned relevant for inclusion, the GET IT RIGHT.
  4. Cunado *thinks* "it is mentioned that all the Remeyite groups object to the UHJ"? I quoted already the one mention of this. It blandly states that "All those that profess belief in Mason Remey as the second Guardian did not accept the Universal House of Justice established in 1963". The statement in the BUPC section isn't about countering views but rather establishing the motives for the actions taken. This has nothing to do with cheap shots at the UHJ, for in fact his stated view is that it's a "fake fraud and an imitation". This isn't the point, which I've elaborated upon in my opening remarks, and I'd appreciate them being considered at some point in the conversation. Let's review them again if we must. IMO, this falls short of making Jensen's specific concerns redundant. For instance nowhere is it established or even eluded that anyone believed the UHJ was "not elected per Shoghi Effendi's instructions", so I object to removing that wording here. In fact it is implied that every detail in establishing the UHJ was done to the letter, which is something the BUPC vehemently object to. Furthermore none of the other groups have formed a legislative body to make up for the specific shortcomings mentioned, which is what these two sentences are establishing. Without this it reads to me like he had no good reason to form the sIBC, but with this concise statement it makes clear that he was doing what he did for a purpose. These specific allegations are mentioned nowhere previously, and yet are concisely relevant, and on-topic. I believe it's a extremely overly dramatic to characterize this ONE SENTENCE as "extended treatment of BUPC visions of the UHJ". Any reasonable person can see this an obvious exaggeration bordering on absurd. It's far from unreasonable to ask it be left alone.
  5. I'm not interested in expanding this section further, but rather streamlining it which is what I was attempting by cutting out some things in the last couple paragraphs. If thats a concern for some reason then lets work with it. I find it chocked full of inane details that can be found in the main article, but thats may be just me?Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 07:37, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Jeff, neither of your "answers" are valid. You've missed the point of the the policies I cited.
  1. This article is about Baha'i divisions, not Remeyite postions on Baha'i divisions. The majority position is the Baha'i position. As such your opinions are indeed tiny-minority ones — even here. Therefore, your insisting that it be "established or even eluded that anyone believed the UHJ was 'not elected per Shoghi Effendi's instructions'" be included is inappropriate. You've already got pages to make your own points.
  2. This isn't an article about Jensen's positions on Baha'i divisions either — so your self-published works aren't appropriate here. They may be on BUPC pages, which is why I've never had an issue with them there. MARussellPESE (talk) 19:17, 23 March 2008 (UTC)

I haven't tried to include material from the Firesides. It's not a necessary requirement. But how is it unreasonable to state he taught his group he wasn't guilty? This is bordering on absurd. This is an article about the Division groups, and you're reinterpreting these policies to try and say that the exceptions that govern minorities to share their views in articles devoted to them don't apply? Please! If not here, then where?

I've elaborated my concerns for four separate issues, and they are being obstinately reverted unilaterally? You reverted much more than the perceived "undue weight" statement. How is this productive when only but one or two are being addressed here? Can we separate and deal with them one at a time please. The present course is unproductive.

  1. Is it unreasonable to mention the verifiable fact that he taught his conviction was unjust but led to what he believed was the begining of his mission?
  2. I believe it's extremely overly dramatic to characterize the ONE SENTENCE about Jensen's the specific concerns which motivated his forming the sIBC as "extended treatment of BUPC visions of the UHJ". That's hardly even the point, and until recently hadn't been an issue, for this statement has been there for over 2 years. All of a sudden it's an "extended treatment of BUPC visions of the UHJ"?
  3. As far as the prediction the wording I chose was practically word for word off the page that was referenced, so if this is so darned relevant for inclusion, then GET IT RIGHT. You keep reverting back to inaccurate statements that don't match what clearly stated on the referenced pages.
  4. What exactly is the problem with cutting out some things in the last couple paragraphs? They seem repetitive and redundant. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 23:15, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
The revert comments and minimal explanations here have made no attempt to address all the content being removed, which began with Cunado (who's contributed zero here), and continues unabated. What little has been offered defies the policy exception given for when minority views can be place. This has not been reconciled by the skillful word-smithing here which is attempting to subvert the right of these groups to be accurately depicted. There is no such "extended treatment" of these minority views being attempted here. These scant explanations are patently absurd, and if that is all there is to consider, then the long standing comment of Jensen's view has no business being removed 2 years after the fact, and the same holds true for the 3 other points above. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 18:26, 24 March 2008 (UTC)
So apparently noone but me in interested in discussing edits? I've fully explained myself, and with no contribution to the conversation Cunado feels free to again unilaterally revert all of my contribution with zero consideration for the clear concerns and reasons I've provided. It was he who removed the long-standing comments to begin with, and yet can't seem to defend excising them with anything more than his personal feeling about it. To bad policy provides otherwise. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 00:17, 25 March 2008 (UTC)
Of course nobody's going to be interested in "discussing" edits after your argument's been asked and answered. For the third time, on this unbelievably convoluted talk page you've started three different threads on, your edits fail WP:Undue which is a sub-set of WP:NPOV. The points your trying to shoe-horn in here are already covered on the various BUPC pages and external links. MARussellPESE (talk) 02:25, 25 March 2008 (UTC)
Maybe what's got me so perplexed is that I've asked about 4 separate issues, to which 2 have still not been acknowledged, and the outright dismissal of the till recently long-standing motives for Jensen's actions defies the policy exception given for when minority views can be placed. Until recently it hadn't been an issue, for this statement has been there for over 2 years. All of a sudden it's an "extended treatment of BUPC visions of the UHJ"? Cunado's only contribution is to hit the revert button, and MARussell's is to redefine policy. Three of these questions haven't been answered to much of any extent, even though I've explained the concerns as many ways as I can imagine; yet they go ignored. The fact that there's two separate discussions going on here has nothing to do with anything. No one's forcing anybody to burden themselves with following one or the other; the two are entirely unrelated. This discussion is clearly reaching a crossroads. I'm suggesting that the Jensen fireside comments are germane, that the predictions wording is afoul of what the provided ref states, and that condensing the last two paragraph's will make it read easier. Can these 3 matters be acknowledged and resolved here and now? What are the concerns that are causing the reverts to those three, for I truly don't understand. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 03:16, 25 March 2008 (UTC)
All of your issues have been addressed — repeatedly: They all fail WP:Undue. I don't know how many times that has to be said.
I don't have to "redefine" a policy to make it clear that the particular positions of a group of a few score people is a tiny-minority viewpoint with respect to that of a group of a few million. MARussellPESE (talk) 02:46, 26 March 2008 (UTC)
Resolving to condense two paragraph's fails UNDUE? Resolving to correctly attribute the details the provided ref actually states fails to meet UNDUE? The three points I've just asked about have been have been "addressed- repeatedly" have they? They've been set aside, ignored, and have been reverted with zero consideration. Not that they're issues to cut our teeth over, but you're honestly telling me that these three specific things I've asked about have been repeatedly addressed and fail to meet UNDUE? LOL> Sorry to trouble anyone over these matters; I didn't set out to aggravate. Cunado's recent edits and rewrites raised concerns for me, and instead of a needless back and forth of reverts as is common, I figured I'd set out to resolve them through discussion. He isn't participating, and you're being dismissive and curt. They don't meet UNDUE? Unbelievable.
BTW, this has not been resolved to any satisfaction: ""Views that are held by a tiny minority should not be represented *except* in articles devoted to those views"". The sentence has laughably been described as "extensive treatment of the BUPC position", but yet only recently after two years has become a monumental concern that it needs excision? Why has no one attempted to touch this fact: ITS ALWAYS BEEN THERE! This has only been "addressed" by curtly dismissing it as "UNDUE" all of a sudden, or by exaggerating it as "extensive treatment". Meanwhile anything I've tried to contribute to the section is being reverted as well? Oh that's right; it's all WP:UNDUE right? Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 05:26, 26 March 2008 (UTC)
What exactly have you tried to "condense" here? Could you please show an edit that resulted in the BUPC section being noticably shorter than its previous state? If you want to condense it, then by all means do so. The other groups' sections are noticeably shorter. There's a yardstick.
Oops. There's this and this edit. Except you weren't condensing the BUPC section. You were, twice, condensing the history section by deleting the entire discussion on the criteria for Guardianship and the role of the Hands — both points that directly rebut Remeyite claims. And you're the victim of policy-smithing and have the temerity to ridicule me when I cite WP:NPOV? Yes, I most certainly must be torturing that policy beyond all recognition.
Sorry you feel I'm being curt. Simple arguments deserve simple answers. MARussellPESE (talk) 01:58, 27 March 2008 (UTC)
Apology accepted. Its become apparent that there is no interest in compromise or consideration of these concerns I've expressed. I've asked direct questions that have gone ignored, and the only thing being offered is this rhetoric that just frustrates the issue; you just linked to two edits and completely mischaracterized them. It should be equally as apparent that just resolving to revert my contributions unilaterally without consideration has gotten nowhere at resolving this disagreement. Cunado decided to remove a germane on-topice statement that stood for years, and hasn't bothered to weigh in with more than "it's a cheap shot at the UHJ". I have no intention of letting this go because you all say so. I wasn't asking for your permission by starting this discussion. I thought we could reach a compromise that was agreeable to all. Evidently the only option you'll consider is your will or nothing? Oh well. I tried. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 01:56, 28 March 2008 (UTC)

Vision of this article has been lost[edit]

Upon meditating the contents of this article, it's clear that in an attempt to answer the stated concerns of the "Division groups", that this article has come to be dominated by a history lesson about the succession of leadership from Shoghi Effendi, to the Hands to the UHJ. This material would be more appropriate in an article about that subject, and stands out as entirely inappropriate here. This articles title indicates it's about the Baha'i division groups, and not the mainstreams groups perceived succession of leadership. I'm removing the extraneous content in order that this article return to it's intended purpose: summaries of divisions. I am aware that there may be a knee jerk reaction to dismiss this concern and revert my edit. I would request that the question first be considered and reviewed as a legitimate concern. Please review the way the article reads now, and if just cause can be shown as to why all that extra superfluous off-topic content warrants inclusion, then please state so here.

Anyone is free take this removed content and merge it into an appropriate article. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 08:45, 23 March 2008 (UTC)

This is the appropriate article for the history of the divisions. There is no other article that it is due weight for. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 14:37, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Agreed; this is the appropriate place for "the history of the division". What isn't obvious is why a reader should endure 4 sections of a history lesson about the perceived succession from SE to the hands to the uhj. What started as a summary of those events has come to dominate the pages contents when that is not what this article is about. Just stating emphatically "IT IS APPROPRIATE" doesn't make it so. I doubt any sound case can be made for it. Please do if you can.
I explained my edits in the BUPC section above, and they are a separate issue. If anyone has an issue with them then the CIVIL thing to do is participate before removing them. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 18:43, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Necessary background, and quite germane to the understanding how the divisions occured. Making a statement that it is not appropriate doesn't make it not appropriate either. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 18:52, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Clearly you haven't even glanced at the edit, for you've twice removed contributions I made to the BUPC section. You're welcome to participate in that discussion above if you have an issue with those edits.
A summary would be "germane". Four sections of intimate details debunking the actions of these groups without allowing the same is a rebuttal. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 19:07, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Read WP:Undue. The Remeyite groups' collective membership is sufficiently small that, as a tiny minority, its collective position would not merit inclusion. However, the BUPC, Tarbiyyat, Hereditary Guardians, and OBF all have decidedly different positions here, so their inclusion individually has even less merit.
Instead of "streamlining" this "history lesson", you've been excising it. This is a repeated pattern of yours Jeff. That's why you're getting reverted. Please stop and do something constructive. If you think the belongs in another article, then start it, move the material over, and leave a link in this one. MARussellPESE (talk) 19:23, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
One might suggest you yourself need a review of WP:Undue, for you're becoming increasingly creative in how you choose to interpret it. How much clearer is "Views that are held by a tiny minority should not be represented *except* in articles devoted to those views"? This article meets every exception. I defy you to find an third party who would disagree. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 19:29, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Read the article, if you please. This is not an article summarizing the positions of Baha'i splinter groups, much less the Remeyite ones. If it were then these groups would be treated much earlier than section four. Those are articles in and of themselves if they were notable.
This article chronicles the phenomenon of the formation of Baha'i splinter groups at various stages of Baha'i history and provides appropriate background. Those splinter groups are remarkably small and transient. As such they are tiny-minority views except in articles explicitly about themselves. That's not "creative interpretation". Its a plain reading of the article. MARussellPESE (talk) 20:16, 23 March 2008 (UTC)

Bogged Down by History Lessons[edit]

In an attempt to answer the stated concerns of the "Division groups", this article has come to be dominated by a history lesson about the succession of leadership from Shoghi Effendi, to the Hands, to the UHJ. This material would be more appropriate in an article about that subject, and stands out as entirely inappropriate here. This articles title indicates it's about the Baha'i division groups, and not the mainstreams groups perceived succession of leadership. A summary would be "germane". Four sections of intimate details debunking the actions of these groups without allowing the same is a rebuttal.

This article, an ancillary article to Baha'i Faith, has become, IMO, completely bogged down by four large sections which attempt to explain every last detail of about what the mainstream groups perception of proper succession should be following it's leader Shoghi Effendi. It was after his death that the majority of the Division groups formed, which is what this article is intended to cover. It now has an extraneous amount of details that are not about these division groups, but rather a rebuttal to them. It is my opinion that this one article devoted to them should not begin by a 14,000MB rebuttal. I suggest this alternative which attempts to stay on-topic [1]. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 19:17, 23 March 2008 (UTC)

Let's look at the sections you removed and why they are quite germane to the article:
  • Criteria for Guardianship:
  1. Mason Remey specifically responded to the need for Guardian to be an Aghsan
  2. The Hands were the ones who expelled Mason Remey and used what they believed was scriptural authority.
  • This section gives the necessary background to both of those actions, and is needed for the reader to understand what Mason Remey was claiming, and how the group of people who followed Mason Remey separated from the rest of the Baha'is.
  • Relationship between the Guardianship and the Universal House of Justice
  • I don't care much for this section, but I believe it was you who wanted it in a long time ago. The quotations in my mind should be removed, and the rest of the text can be fit into the "Decision of the Universal House of Justice" section.
  • Role of the Hands of the Cause
This section again gives the necessary background for the rest of the article including (a) how the Hands came to have executive power, which the smaller groups state was wrong (b) why the majority of the Baha'is didn't believe that a Guardian could be appointed right away (b) the statements by the further divisions as to why the House was in their mind not correct since it didn't go through the four states they claimed
And it's not 14000MB, but 8000 bytes. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 19:40, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Agree w/Jeff3000. The "Relationship" section, if memory serves, was a direct response to Jeffmichaud's attempts to overlay Jensen's POV which are directly rebutted by the quotes. I'm perfectly happy with their elimination and the section's cosolidation if we aren't going to have to then re-rebut BUPC POV here. MARussellPESE (talk) 20:23, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Clearly we'll have to rely on more than MARussell's memory; it's having issues as of late. That quagmire was formed by user Dave Cornell. I had nothing to do with it, nor does it have any use here. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 23:10, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Watch it Jeff. It was two years ago or so. But I certainly got the "what" didn't I: shoe-horning Jensenite propaganda into the article and being forced to rebut. If we don't have to rebut your undue weight material, I don't have a problem culling it down. MARussellPESE (talk) 23:23, 23 March 2008 (UTC)

I'm assuming some fragment of this laborious "Relationship" section must remain? Is that the concern? Jeff3000 stated "I don't care much for this section", and MARussell concurred adding "I don't have a problem culling it down". How did that become "rv-Discussion is germane and WP:V, inconvenient to the editor's POV, but germane and verifiable"? If it's so important (which I don't see how it fits here at all), the quotes could just be summarized. I don't see it's value at all; but that has nothing to do with its "inconvenience to my POV". It just doesn't have a context in the flow of the article.

Another point which I believe is a strain on the article is the extensive use of quotes which can be summarized and referenced. This has gotten a bit out of hand in almost every section. Also, the Manual of Style specifically singles out the {{cquote}} template used throughout this article as inappropriate stating: "Block quotes are not enclosed in quotation marks (especially including decorative ones such as those provided by the {{cquote}} template, used only for "call-outs", which are generally not appropriate in Wikipedia articles)". I think several of these long quotes can be summarized and referenced, and would be happy to do so, along with any other consensus points reached. I thought believed we had that with the "Relationship" section, but I must have been mistaken? Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 07:52, 28 March 2008 (UTC)

You want to streamline the article? That's streamlining.
These three edits of yours ([2], [3], and [4]) all eliminate, without discussion, entire WP:V sections that rebut your POV and have been here for years. That's not streamlining. Jeff, you demand that your tiny minority view be heard, but your edits repeatedly tried to eliminate sections 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, and 3.4 — all of which address key points in this episode from the Baha'i perspective? Wow! That's brazen. Makes me wonder what you think "equal" time would be.
For discussion with those interested: which of these sections is extraneous or overly long?
3.1 Passing of Shoghi Effendi
This three paragraph section sets the stage for the controversy.
3.2 Criteria for Guardianship
This three paragraph section states the criteria around which the controversy swirled.
3.3 Relationship between the Guardianship and the Universal House of Justice
This one paragraph section addresses a key point raised and pressed hard by Remey and his various successors.
3.4 Role of the Hands of the Cause
This eight paragraph section describes the actions taken by the Custodians and their justification. As their actions have been the subject of heated attack by Remeyite groups, including notation in the BUPC section that they'd been "corrupted", they deserve to be detailed.
3.5 Charles Mason Remey
This nine paragraph section describes Remey's actions and justifications during this period. One point has a Custodian's response, but there isn't a better place that I can see that doesn't interrupt the flow.
3.6 Decision of the Universal House of Justice
This is two paragraphs long and sums up the closure of this period.
3.7 A break in the line of Guardians
This raises and then rebuts a point made by all the Remeyite groups. As it's made by the Universal House of Justice, it seems to fit nicely following their 1969 decision.
MARussellPESE (talk) 19:42, 29 March 2008 (UTC)

Good job; I think that's what I just suggested doing in my last comment, and I volunteered to do it if there was consensus. I think it looks and reads a lot easier that way. Good job Michael; you're an inspiration!

That cuts out more than half the extraneous content, and its great. Your descriptions of them describe their current state, for they were all tediously burdened with quotes before your last edit. As you've duly noted, these sections I've brought this attention to ,sections 3.2,3.3, & 3.4, are "rebuttals" to the POV of the groups that follow. Moreover they're rebuttals to views that haven't been presented in the article. For instance if one doesn't know that the Relationship section is a rebuttal to the "without the Guardian the Baha'i World Faith would be permanently mutilated" quote, then it has no context. That view is not present. The Criteria section is debateable, as the mainstream Baha'is choose to ignore the Baha'i News quote from Shoghi Effendi where he denies that the Hands have a right to overrule his choice; yet that has been repeatedly objected to inclusion. All three of these sections, as well as 3.6 & 3.7 are not about the "phenomenon of Divisions", but as you state, rebuttals. And they're rebuttals to views that haven't been defined on the page. You're now confirming my original criticism which is that there are several sections dedicated to rebutting these groups, which ventures off from this articles subject. There isn't a need for extensive treatment to either side's views or the rebuttals. I haven't suggested "equal time", but you've created an environment where these groups have "no time". Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 20:05, 29 March 2008 (UTC)

More on reverts[edit]

Regarding this edit, I reverted changes by Jeffmichaud.

1) Jeff removed "served four years of a twenty year sentence in the Montana State Prison". That is relevant to the story. Having served 4 years in state prison for molestation is a significant event in any person's life.

2) Added sentence about Jensen's fireside classes. Doesn't really add anything useful, just that he thinks he's not guilty.

3) Prediction/Prophecy. There is a whole section in Stone's book dedicated to how Jensen and Chase dealt with failed prophecy, and prominent among them was to say that they were only making predictions, and therefore they aren't false prophets. Anyone can make a prediction, right? It's a way of watering down what was said. The only third party source clearly uses the term "prophecy", and that's what should be used here.

4) Jensen's expectation was that the comet would begin to enter earth's orbit on a given date, and collide with the earth exactly one year later. By removing the word "collide" it waters down the prophecy and almost makes it meaningless. Debris falling on the earth is no big deal, but a earth shattering collision with a giant comet is another.

5) The sentence introducing why Jensen set up the council in 1991 is well worded and concise. This has been beat to death, and all the main points have been met. The version that you used is just not a good version.

6) The paragraph about Neal Chase almost deserves its own section, as he represents virtually a new division group. Combining the paragraph and watering down the controversy is just not going to fly.

Cuñado ☼ - Talk 05:39, 28 March 2008 (UTC)

Thank you (seriously), for sharing your reasoning. I don't wholly agree with it all, but thats fine. As you have basically set aside every detail entirely, I hope will at least consider these replies individually:
  1. Agreed; I just saw it was implied stating he was convicted and later paroled that time was served. The details in here seem extraneous in places. No biggy either way if its deemed important.
  2. I don't know if the point has ever been elaborated upon to any extent to clarify this rather significant tenet of our, so let me try now. Basically we believe he was wrongly convicted/sentenced, but that it was this very thing that led him to be forced into that prison on that date, and these two things were fulfillment of prophecy. There also happened to be a group of Mormons who pioneered the Deer Lodge Valley that believed the return of Jesus would return there on Aug. 8, 1969, which happened to be his 1st day in prison. A Mormon named George Williams had had vision to that effect, and we believe it was a pinnacle point in the story. It happens to be why we believe in him- because he didn't choose these matters, but was forced to comply. I suppose this could be elaborated upon in his own article. It's not a trite point for us though, as its the very reason we believe- the date and address match the prophecy, in our opinions. I'd ask this point be reconsidered in that light, if as you've noted, "significant events" in a persons life are being compiled here.
  3. The page you provided for the ref has specific details that read a bit less bizarre than you've worded, that's all. I think both our versions could be more carefully worded. I'd like to separate the predictions (prophecies-whatever), from the sentence about his teachings. Its running-on, and they're distinct issues.
  4. Why is this all of a sudden so monumental after all this time, please? I know that you 'believe' the main points have been met, but as I've noted the 'one' sentence about all this says none of the groups that accept Remey accept the UHJ. I maintain that's hardly the point here, as these two specific things were the exact reasons he set out to form a new council- something no other group has done, see? This was well established long ago; why all of a sudden is this so crucial to excise?
  5. These matters about Neal can stay as they are- I just thought it was all a bit cumbersome. The Judge has actually ordered that the members of the sIBC convene a meeting and settle the difference over the council table (very Baha'i, right?). He's not going to rule in either party's favor. I just thought since it's addressed at length in the article, that the extensive details here were overdone; but whatever.
Regards. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 07:06, 28 March 2008 (UTC)
Compare these two versions. I pruned down a lot of the wording, as the section was too long. I removed the mention of "fireside classes", which is not necessary or even interesting, while maintaining the relevant info that he claimed innocence. I removed the extra line about him thinking the House of Justice wasn't elected properly, which is already duly covered. I separated the bit about Neal Chase into a sub-section. These are clearly improvements to the article. Please stop reverting. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 19:07, 31 March 2008 (UTC)
This self-congratulatory "improvement" has barely scaled down any of the size at all. The fact is that it's recently grown to be so large due to additions you brought forward. Mentioning his firesides is hardly expanding the section, but is there to mention that he taught he fulfilled prophecy by entering the prison- entirely on-topic whether or not your POV is that it's interesting. You keep claiming the criticism of the UHJ is "duly covered", but refuse to acknowledge that 1) this was there for several years prior to your recent attempt to excise it, and 2) that it's not duly covered AT ALL. The one mention that anyone on this page has an issue with that body blandly states they "don't accept" it. I've explained above in plain simple terms the justification for its inclusion, and I'll thank you leave it alone. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 02:30, 1 April 2008 (UTC)
Since Jan. 23rd this attempt to excise Doc's criticism has been characterized in more ways than I can count, and yet they all reek of BS. Cunado reworded what was said on Jan 23rd in his "major rewrite", and I have been adamant that the 2 year old version remains. There's no reason whatsoever that Cunado's Jan. rewrite is any more worthy of inclusion than the one the has stood so long, so I'm replacing it with the original wording if they cannot both remain. There's no just cause why it's acceptable to state he believed a "perceived corruption" took place versus just plainly stating the motives for creating his IBC. Obviously WP:UNDUE is not the issue, but a charade of a campaign to shield readers from any specific criticisms of the lily-white facade Haifan's uphold. It was never an issue until Cunado decided to excise the specifics and sterilize the statement with his own version. There's no just cause for supporting one version of that opening sentence over another; the original version shall suffice. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 02:46, 3 April 2008 (UTC)

Comparing the versions here:

Jensen believed that the Bahá'í administrative order became corrupted following the death of Shoghi Effendi, and that he was chosen by God to re-establish the administration.

Jensen believed that the Universal House of Justice in Haifa is flawed and fallible, as it is without a living guardian/executive, and by his intrepretations not elected per Shoghi Effendi's instructions.

The first version sounds more encyclopedic, has the main points, and is actually more accurate and informative. Jensen did believe there was a fallout, not just with the House of Justice, but among the followers of Remey. In his own world he was the only one who could save the administration and he claimed that his authority came from God. It doesn't make sense otherwise that someone could come along and try to re-create an International Baha'i Council. Once more, if the council had gained recognition as a religious court in Israel, he still would not have believed it to be authoritative, so the last part about "not elected" properly is irrelevant. The statement "without a living Guardian" is a treacherous way of stating as fact something that is contended by Baha'is. The role of the Guardianship is maintained by not filling the function that was exclusively the Guardian's to fill, the same way Shoghi Effendi intentionally left several issues open for the House of Justice to decide on, as it was outside his authority to do so. On every point the first version is better, and stop throwing around accusations of promoting my POV, as that one can be thrown back on you tenfold.

And by the way, it's a lie to say it was "never an issue" for years. You first added it 14 April 2006, then it was removed, added, removed, added and reworded, removed, added, removed and moved, added back, and all within 5 days. My fingers are hurting from all this copy and pasting, otherwise I would add the dozen or so other times that I removed or reworded it between then and now. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 15:38, 3 April 2008 (UTC)

While I appreciate participation in a discussion about this, I don't think the exaggerations are necessary. Neither is calling me a liar. All that you've demonstrated by providing links to those edits is how whatever I contribute to this article is met with obstinate unilateral reverting, and that whatever content I have managed to provide here has been through edit warring with you. As well it never fails that you eventually come along and attempt to "improve" the content with your superior word-smithing skills. In fact your improvements are nothing more than homogenizations of any well deserved criticisms schismatic groups have with your fallible UHJ. I would like to see any of these "dozens" of other removal/additions that you imagine took place after that initial round. It in fact has stood there undisturbed until you came along with your "improvements" in Jan. Since then there's been a dozen a week, mainly because you're so bent on your will winning out every time that compromise is apparently not in your operating program.
These concerns you raised, while logical on the surface, are yet another of many attempts at justifying sterilizing direct criticisms. The concept of there being no living guardian on the UHJ is addressed above, so there's no apparent threat in mentioning that he rejected them in spite of the universal acceptance of this preposterous notion. The rest of what you're proposing involves presuming the right to speculate on hypotheticals, and a whole lot of original research. Not necessary. I haven't attempted rewording the original statement for no one has shown any willingness to compromise on this issue; so neither have I. I disagree that your wording is any sort of "improvement". I do like that it mentions he was chosen by go to do this, but I don't think it fully encapsulates the issue enough to warrant excising the previous statement. I actually like the way it reads with both statements together; I thought that was the best of both worlds, personally.
He didn't just think the Administration had "become corrupted" after Shoghi, for it didn't exist until the Hands created their headless House. The issue was that it was established outside the four stage plan, and that it had no guardian. Maybe this could be worded without a complete disregard for these concerns? Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 18:00, 3 April 2008 (UTC)
It is astoundingly frustrating to continually have to engage in revert wars, and to time after time have your stated concerns and ideas obstinately ignored. So Cunado, no compromise is acceptable? Your's is the only version acceptable? Okay then. Good luck with that. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 01:23, 6 April 2008 (UTC)
A fresh view to this may be helpful - compromise means accepting that you can't have exactly what you want, and accepting something less than perfect in its place. A clear example is Baha'u'llah's picture on His page - which is there on the insistence of non-Baha'is! The sections on all the different groups are on the whole very fair and well balanced, not to mention factual and informative. You can't expect much better, can you? Personally I find "your" section disproportionately long - I would rather see a brief summary replacing it. You have a page specifically on Baha'is Under the Covenant, after all, where you can have precisely the wording you want.Soundofmusicals (talk) 07:06, 6 April 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for your perspective here. The BUPC section is not accurately characterized as "my" section per se. In fact, the section has grown to that size due to Cunado who felt the need to get the most out of having purchased Stone's Armageddon book by cramming in as many details as he could into the section. At one time I had taken liberties to expand the section to a larger scope, but eventually all that content was moved to the BUPC, and Dr. Jensen pages and the section was scaled back to about the size of the OB section. Cunado rewrote this section in Jan., and expanded its size considerably, while at the same time decided that the sentence currently in dispute was "improved" by removing the specific concerns of Doc. It now appears that only that ONE version is acceptable, as I've rewritten it several ways to consider both of our stated concerns. Reverting back to that Jan version is all he is apparently willing to accept. So here we are. What do you suggest Soundofmusicals? Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 07:20, 6 April 2008 (UTC)


Wow! All this over this edit? Can it get more petty? (Maybe somebody will start demading to see British spelling soon.)

Jeff, Cuñado's version of this passage is better written. Using the same verb in consecutive sentences is poor style.

On the other hand, while details of Jensen's prophecies and pyramidology do impeach his credibility, they do bog things down here. The whole BUPC section is 50 - 100% too long. Enough detail should be left to characterize Jensen and his beliefs, but we should rely on the articles themselves where Stone and other references are well established.

  1. "Of course" he pled innocent - Redundant.
  2. Pyramidology - Extra weight.
  3. Disasters and holocausts - Redundant with later reference. (We could use either one, but both seem redundant.)
  4. The "After the death of Jensen ... " - needs a WP:RS. Besides this is covered later.
  5. Rearranged the second paragraph to flow chronologically.

MARussellPESE (talk) 20:06, 6 April 2008 (UTC)

I disagree on the relevancy of the prophecies and pyramidology, since that is what makes him notable, but I can see why it's not necessary on the summary of followers of Remey.
I tried to rearrange again after your edit to make the ideas flow better and remove some wording that wasn't necessary. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 03:16, 7 April 2008 (UTC)


In the Further developments section, the 3rd para cites, note 48, a publlication of the UHJ, ie his enemies. This cannot be regarded as a reliable source for such statements under WP policy. The original source, or some secondary reliable source, must be found to back these statements. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:57, 1 May 2008 (UTC)

That's a good point; the issue of the heavy reliance on primary sources has been duly noted previously, and unfortunately entirely dismissed despite the clear policies governing reliance primarily on primary sources. Without them this article might not exist, for aside from a couple of scholarly works almost everything in this article is basically from primary sources and strung together in a collaborative WP:OR that a few editors collectively agree upon. Little to nothing in this article comprises works from secondary sources. For instance, there are over a dozen references to Ministry of the Custodians, a book authored primarily by one arguably self-serving and biased person, and published by the very group whose actions it defends. Here it is used as if Biblical, per se, and entire sections rely solely upon it without EVER providing secondary sources to back it up. This is by any stretch a clear violation ofpolicy to wit: "Wikipedia articles should rely on reliable, published secondary sources. All interpretive claims, analyses, or synthetic claims about primary sources must be referenced to a secondary source, rather than original analysis of the primary-source material by Wikipedia editors." Entire sections, like "Role of the Hands", are violating these policies, for almost nothing from secondary sources exist in them.
You are correct that Note 48 is an unacceptable source and should be fixed. Likewise, all the UHJ papers are actually unpublished sources, so none of them warrant inclusion as sources. One could make a case against the rest of these primary sources as well for primaries should be backed up with secondaries per policy. In the past when this question has arose, there has been some creative dances around the subject, but the issue has never been fixed to the satisfaction of the policies. I wonder if these points have secondary sources? Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 17:04, 1 May 2008 (UTC)
I guess there's no objection then? I've stricken the statement from the UHJ paper as it's clearly against WP:PSTS. I'd be interested in seeing some of the other sections reinforced with 2ndary sources, like Role of the Hands, which are relying entirely on primary sources as well. Is anyone aware of secondary sources that could bolster this section? If not its evaluations and analysis should be culled. Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 07:37, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Read WP:OR and then read the article. This article is basically a series of declarative points each supported by readily identifiable sources. By definition that's not original thought. There's a dearth of secondary material that goes into depth here, so the article is stuck with primary sources if its to have any detail. Using primary sources is not ideal, but not a violation of policy. MARussellPESE (talk) 02:19, 3 May 2008 (UTC)
Sure, I can see what you're saying. I do believe the Anon User has a valid point about the UHJ paper. Any suggestions on a better way to present that? I don't believe Cunado's edit fully resolves the matter. I doubt anyone would disagree it's a questionable source at best for such a strong and damaging accusation? Here it's going beyond providing "information", and straight to the heart of challenging his credibility. That's obviously the point of providing it, and I happen to agree with the points the Anon raised that such a bold attack on his character warrants a reliable, published, credible source. Is there one?
As to the extra points I raised, I could be misunderstanding these matters (wouldn't be the first time ;), but I understand the policy is that evaluations and analysis should be avoided and the information from primary sources should stick to reflecting the information presented and avoid conclusions. Am I misinformed about that? I wouldn't suggest Ministry isn't a valid source, but it's being heavily relied upon as a sole source for a lot of details, and it often ventures into "evaluations" and "religious analysis". Isn't it possible to present the information without that, or rather rely on 2ndary sources for this if it's in fact necessary? Baha'i Under the CovenantJeff 05:01, 3 May 2008 (UTC)
The points raised in the UHJ letter, unfortunately, haven't received much coverage outside of the religion. In my opinion it presents a picture of Remey's disintegrating mental state that is sympathetic to observe. While I am certain that these letters exist, WP:SELFPUB, point 4, is pretty clear that references to third parties is out-of-bounds.
This article goes into a great deal of detail. Much of it directly in response to another Remeyite editor who disputed each-and-every point, and each-and-every event of the timeline. I had to document every single turn - and Ministry is the only book that does that that in that detail. Taherzadeh's Covenant of Baha'u'llah and Eunice Braun's March of the Institutions are not nearly as detailed. However, mindful of WP:OR and WP:RS, I tried to be scrupulous and avoid relying on any of the Ruhiyyih Khanum's discussion, and keep the citations pointed directly at the correspondence and letters that document the statements in the article. Her analysis and discussion as a prinicple player in those events would be a poor source here per WP:RS.
To my reading there's very little "evaluation" or "analysis" that isn't pointing directly to an external source for citation. Little of Taherzadeh is quoted directly. As Covenant does go into deeper analysis than Ministry perhaps we should be citing it more consistently.
A minor note: It appears to be that there are a whole lot of books noted as "References" that aren't cited, may be redundant, or address the subject only tangentially. I'll clean that up. MARussellPESE (talk) 20:30, 3 May 2008 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with Image:FirstUHJ.jpg[edit]

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Sourcing Problems[edit]

There are more than a few citations that refer to court filings. These are documents filed by one or another party to a court case. Sometimes these are also filed by interested third parties.

These filings are not findings of fact, which are determined by the judge or jury. Nor are they findings of law by a judge. They are the opinions of the interested party. As such they are, by definition, representations of a particular POV.

These are not acceptable sources per WP:V as these are not published by responsible publishers.

These are not acceptable sources per WP:RS for the POV bias already noted.

In this article these findings were installed to respond to {{fact}} tags. Since these sources were the only ones in response, I'm treating these as stale tags and am removing them. MARussellPESE (talk) 15:28, 28 December 2008 (UTC)

These were the only sources for two sections, so there was no salvaging them. The only source for the "Rex King" section was its own website. Fails WP:SELFPUB in an article not about itself. No salvage there either. MARussellPESE (talk) 15:33, 28 December 2008 (UTC)
The "Neal Chase" subsection had only one source. That required a login to verify. Fails WP:V. No salvage value. MARussellPESE (talk) 15:36, 28 December 2008 (UTC)
MARussell, you said "The "Neal Chase" subsection had only one source"? I can only assume you've forgotten that it was YOU who created these points and that it was YOU who provided the source in question, and it was YOU who demanded it was imperative to include these points. Now it fails? Oh, okay. Whatever pleases thee. DisarrayGeneral 02:37, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

I don't know if having this same discussion on three different talk pages can be productive, but whatever it takes I guess. Nevertheless, I distinctly recall it was Cunado, and not me, who dragged forward all these court documents to use them as sources. The points accompanying them were not my wording. What's actually a concern to me at this point is that it was YOU MARussell that deleted and redirected the Joel Marengella page to this article, and now you've deleted everything regarding the OBF and Joel without discussion. Now in the BUPC section there are references to points made in what used to be the section above it which no longer exists. These deletions are so entirely convoluted you've actually rendered me speechless for the first time ever. No effort has been attempted to preserve anything about these groups, nor has a moments notice been given to find solutions. Is it your will to blot out of the history of the Faith the existence of Joel and the OBF, for that is what it looks like from where I'm standing. Can you please put down the hatchet and lets discuss solutions to these monumental concerns you've just decided to care about all of a sudden. DisarrayGeneral 02:55, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

I'm not an admin. I can't delete and redirect articles. That took consensus. You know this.
Yup, absolutely right. I was the one who plastered {{fact}} tags all over the WP:OR on these groups. Your best efforts were apparently to let Cuñado find references? Impressive.
"Put down the hatchet"? No. The burden is on the editor who inserts the information to properly source the material. If you can't muster anything and leave it to others, then that's your problem. (I wish you would read WP:V. We've only been citing it to you for, what, two years?)
"Blot out the history of the OBF etc." No. I can't blot out of history what never made it into the history books. It's got to be WP:V before it can go into WP. Perforce, there's no reason to preserve it. Probably the most succinct, thorough and accurate source on the various Remeyite groups I've ever seen is the House's letter, but that's WP:SELFPUB and its use here violates the "can't use it in an article not about itself". See, I do follow the policies even when they apply to me.
Of course we could add MacEoin's discussion from Iranica or Handbook of World Religions, but its dismissive tone of the Remeyites is a bit strong even for me. I'd rather have two independent sources prior to leaving something so derogatory.
Why all of a sudden? Because I have a life, have some time on my hands now and don't have sock puppet trolls to deal with. MARussellPESE (talk) 05:53, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

Concensus? Really? A lack of objection is not a consensus. The so-called "discussion" that allegedly took place to reach this alleged consensus comprised your sole participation; on what planet is that a consensus? Here you redirected the page to Baha'i divisions without any consensus or discussion, but per your own declaration. I personally didn't object or contribute as I knew the content there was being treated here. Now you've effectively blotted him off of the page, and are acting offended for being asked why. The OBF are in the history of the faith, and you're either being coi or think me naive to be so dismissive about them. If they're so unnotable as you claim, then why has your NSA twice dragged them into court trying to enforce injunctions against them? Indeed, it's very convincing that neither he, nor they, have any notability when your own NSA keeps sending teams of lawyers before Federal Justices to try and silence them.

You haven't addressed the issue I've raised with this phony redirection. You're now trying to change the rules half-way in to suite your newly formed objections. You've deleted all traces of Joel, Donald, Rex, and the OBF from this article by leveraging SELFPUB. This article is ostensibly about divisions in the Faith, so technically it's partially about these groups it covers. In subsections to this article which are specifically about a particular group's past and beliefs the clause for SELFPUB governing "self-published sources about themself" applies in subsections dedicated to them self. The article is about all the parties involved, and no one in particular. The subsections about a particular group should by all accounts be allowed to use sources about themselves. DisarrayGeneral 06:25, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

Aside from the greater issue of sourcing beliefs here with self pubplished sources (something "The Man" and "Remey society" still contain) please consider this: the proposed findings of fact which you're raising objections to using as sources are only being used here to state plain basic facts about orders of events; there are no controversial beliefs being stated with those. What could possibly be objectionable about stating who and where and when these events took place? These court documents are findings of facts that were upheld by the NSA's briefs, and were not objected to as facts; at least not the one's provided here. It's egregious to summarily delete these sections on these grounds. DisarrayGeneral 07:29, 29 December 2008 (UTC)
They're still "proposed findings of fact"s, as clearly identified in the documents themselves, and therefore primary sources. If these factoids are that critical then they have to have WP:RS. MARussellPESE (talk) 02:47, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

These objections about the NSA's Chicago case are entirely inane, and removing content from this article based on this faulty reasoning is out of order. Since these circumstances are not clearly defined by the WP:V policy, and instances of court documents are not clearly established on what is and isn't acceptable, we find ourselves again at the mercy of your interpretations. You have launched this assault on this and other pages removing content based on this charade about the court docs being a primary source, when in fact it clearly states at the outset of that document that the items found in BOLD text are not objected to by any parties in the case, and so are therefore considered undisputed facts as they are uncontested. To wit, it states just before point #1: "Facts set forth in bold-face type are agreed by all parties." They are facts laid out in both sides recounting of events. Furthermore the details lifted from the Findings of Facts document that are being used here are simply series of events, and not statements about beliefs or hearsay. Please examine the document and see for yourself that the points in BOLD are uncontested FACTS. So this assault against its use here is entirely inane, and absolutely afoul of logic and reason. I am therefore replacing your fact tags with this entirely appropriate verifiable source. DisarrayGeneral 03:47, 3 January 2009 (UTC)

I'm tired of telling you to read WP:V. Sources have to be published by reliable third parties. Court filings aren't. Period. Full stop. MARussellPESE (talk) 17:40, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
You know the process here. One editor makes an argument. Others who disagree make counter arguments. I've made mine, and am still waiting for you to stop name-calling, presuming bad faith, and actually make an argument based on policy.
This is easy. I've asserted that court filings are not WP:V because they aren't published by reliable third parties. They aren't WP:RS because, by definition, these are biased by the POV of their respective authors. Please disprove both points and stop the WP:TEND. MARussellPESE (talk) 17:50, 3 January 2009 (UTC)

Plularism Project source.[edit]

General Disarray states that the two sources from Harvard's Pluralism website are self-references and not a reliable source. In fact that is not true. If you read the about page of the project [5] it is a decade-long research project at Harvard University, and in fact has been published [6] by Columbia University Press in 1997, 2002, and 2008. As you may know, the verifiability policy states that the university presses are one of the most reliable sources. In addition to that the website is run by Professors at Harvard University [7], and thus in no way can content on the page be seen as a personal website by a singular student, but instead the result of research at Harvard University, and published under their copyright. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 17:46, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

Thanks Jeff for sharing your concerns and explaining restoring the points referenced by the pluralism project. I had initially brought forward the project as a reference for the BUPC on it's page, and objections were raised then and it was deemed "out" by the authorities on high. Now I guess it's "in" since it has a value which suites y'all? That's great to know. I'll be reinserting details from the projects findings here and elsewhere knowing that it has y'alls stamp of approval. Regards.DisarrayGeneral 05:27, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
Not true. Cunado added the material in September of 2007. It's been there ever since. MARussellPESE (talk) 19:41, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
I'm not the one suffering from memory issues lately, and you obviously didn't even read what I actually wrote above. I initially brought the reference forward when I was creating the BUPC page, which is why Cunado was even aware of it in the first place. But it's use as a reference for information about us was objected to and removed. It was only later reintroduced by him when he decided it was necessary for his purposes. Thanks for calling me a liar though. DisarrayGeneral 19:47, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
Um, you said that you brought the reference forward when you created the article. I wasn't relying on memory. I scanned the diffs. You created the ariticle in Nov of 2005. As late as Nov 2006 it still wasn't there. Cunado's edit in Sep of 2007 was the first one in which I saw it appear. Care to provide an earlier one?
You seem to be having problems with the verb "be" (See any of the transitive, copulative definitions 5, 8, 9 in this case.) "Not true" is absolutely not "You are a liar". So, please lighten up and stop personalizing observations on your comments and conduct as personal attacks. MARussellPESE (talk) 00:19, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
Why exactly are you splitting hairs about this? Does it somehow concern you, or even matter one way or another? Aside from having to prove me wrong whenever possible, how does any of this matter? Well since it's already consumed a portion of your day, I'll just point out that all you had to do was look at the first instance where I added a single reference which was the six edit in the history on day one of the article's creation: see Sources section. It was the primary source for content, and the sole ref for the article, but it was removed by the following day by Cunado without comment: [8], and somehow got lost in the shuffle and never reinstated. So, aside from fixating on trying to find me in error, is there any other reason this is relevant and needs to be belabored? DisarrayGeneral 03:29, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
"Splitting hairs"? You're making grandiose claims of victimhood here, and can't be bothered to back it up.
And you're kidding, right? You plagiarised the copyrighted Harvard research for the entire article, and complain that Cunado struck it? You provided no link for anyone to check it. Either a newbie mistake, or a definite attempt to avoid detection. No way to know, as both are plausible. Cunado should have removed it on sight, and without comment. Be grateful. He should have reported you to the admins.
You're using that episode to claim you're being victimized? Nobody would have noticed that plagiarism except him, and he let it slide. Now its here: front-and-center. Wow! MARussellPESE (talk) 18:13, 3 January 2009 (UTC)

Momen's Article is Okay?[edit]

Jeff (Disarray), I'd have used this article years ago if I didn't think you'd raise a hue and cry over it. You do realize that its principle thesis is that all of these groups will eventually "will wither and die", don't you?

This particular article technically is WP:SELFPUB. Except, Moojan Momen is a widely-recognized Islamic and Baha'i scholar, so his inclusion is arguably quite acceptable. I'll take your inclusion of this as acceptance of that.

Wow! This makes a huge difference. Momen's article deals with Remey and his followers in all of two paragraphs. Here, we have thriteen different sections — some all of a sentence long, but others reproducing other sources. This article could be streamlined quite dramatically. Primarily much of the detail about Remey's defection, the Custodians' response, and the successor groups could, and should, be culled down.

Please bear in mind that most of Section 3 was originally mine and a response to an editor who refused to yield a single point unless it had a direct response. That said, I'd love to see this streamlined.

All of the material in Section 4 should be reduced to a paragraph. The detail on these groups is a superflouous as much of the detail in Section 3, and of less general interest.

I'd like to give everybody who's interested a chance to read Momen's article. I'll be re-working this article heavily soon, and basing much of the rework on it. It'll be easier if we're all on the same page with some preparation. MARussellPESE (talk) 03:12, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Momen's article presents a cogent thesis that these various episodes, regardless of the period in which they occured, basically followed the same pattern of response. Taherzadeh's books each provide greater detail and supports the thesis.
This article can, and should, be rearranged to clarify this. As such, the various episode's can, not only be put into a larger context, they can be balanced across these periods. The Remey episode, and the subsequent splintering of the Remeyite groups, really was, to scale, not much more dramatic than any other.
Therefore, this material will need to be edited to bring it down into balance with the other periods. I'll not delete germane material, certainly trying to avoid cited points, but there really is no point in elaborating on others. e.g. details on second-generation splits within a Remeyite splinter group. MARussellPESE (talk) 18:04, 17 January 2009 (UTC)


Placing the word "see" in the ref seems to add clutter to me. I suggest removing those unless there's some precedent, in the form of policy or guidelines on WP. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 00:34, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

I'm using it to distinguish primary from tertiary sources. Technically, primary sources are verboten on WP, but these provide a level of detail not otherwise available. I think the "See `Abdul-Baha" form is appropriate and similar to what I've seen in academic sources. MARussellPESE (talk) 00:41, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Any examples of that being the case? Cuñado ☼ - Talk 02:15, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
There is no "correct" form from the style guides. But these are "Notes" so they're use is more broad than just a list of citations. My Turabian says that "Notes have four main uses: a) cite the authority for statements in the text …; b) to make cross references; c) to make incidental comments upon, to amplify, or to qualify textual discussion …; d) to make acknowledgements." (Turabian, A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations, 1987, §9.2, p. 9.2 )
If we are using a note to satisfy a), then it's a reference note and the source must be at least a secondary source per WP:PRIMARY.
If we're using a note for c), which is what primary sources can be used for, then they shouldn't look like reference citations. In effect, "See such and such" is short for: "For further detail, see such and such."
b) refers to cross references within the work itself so is moot here. d) is not applicable either.
I believe that we must distinguish those primary sources used to add detail from those tertiary and secondary sources used as the basis of the text. This article is too important and contentious to do otherwise. MARussellPESE (talk) 19:31, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
I agree that the distinction is useful, but I've never seen, and personally wouldn't understand the intent of the method you used. As an aside, I'm reading a book right now that uses an asterisk for c) with the explanation on the same page, and a numbered footnote for a) with the details at the end of the book. The asterisk is not a reference to another source but an explanation by the author.
I'm guessing Wikipedia doesn't have a standard to differentiate the two types of footnotes, so it seems like you're left to make one up. I don't think adding the word "see" in front of the reference does any good. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 20:04, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

ref group="note"[edit]

Check out the formatting on Augustus. They use separate "notes" for incidental comments or to qualify textual discussion, and "footnotes" for citing authority. The MOS says no single method is preferred and actually encourages you to make stuff up. I like separating notes from footnotes. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 21:05, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Acre Akko `Akka[edit]

Regardless of what name we use, it should be used throughout the article, and multiple versions shouldn't be used at the same time. For example... `Akka (Acre) ... seems silly. As with all Arabic sourced words, the Baha'i articles use the same orthography, which deems it as `Akka. It was my understanding that `Akka is the Arab way to say it, as opposed to the Hebrew or Greek. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 02:18, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

Akka is an obscure name, possibly more commonly Ottoman than Arab, but most commonly recognized by Baha'is. Akko is the Arab name, and Acre is the European term.
It's not uncommon, or even silly, to include the English translation of any term in parentheses following, if the term is not generally recognizable. As we're talking about the Ottoman period, Akka is appropriate, but Acre is what most Anglophones familiar with the Levant would recognize. MARussellPESE (talk) 18:52, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
If Akka is linked to the article on itself, the translation is irrelevant. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 19:10, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Mirror sites don't pick up the links. MARussellPESE (talk) 21:14, 18 January 2009 (UTC)


A little annoyed to have come back to this page after a long time to find OBF section (including court docs showing ~40 person membership) gone! Of course it's not verifiable information in the sense that they could have been lying about membership data but it's still a 3rd party source citing a statement from the head of the faction: doesn't go against WP:V as far as i'm concerned.... anyone mind if i replace the statement and link? Very useful data about a prominent baha'i division (in the sense that there's an ongoing court hearing between the two. k1-UK-Global (talk) 13:51, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

Very much object if such can't meet WP:V, WP:NPOV, etc. MARussellPESE (talk) 21:42, 15 August 2009 (UTC)

Verifiying sources[edit]

I have marked the first source "Momen & Smith 1989, p. 64" as unreliable. The book only covers up to 1984 which is not recent enough to make such a claim. - Stillwaterising (talk) 19:47, 10 April 2010 (UTC)

Actually, it is. There have been no major, or even minor, schismatic efforts that post-date the Remeyite events in 1963. MARussellPESE (talk) 04:16, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
The last change of leadership in the religion happened in 1963, so the book is accurate for it's statements, but I'll add another one too. Jeff3000 (talk)
Stillwaterising has tagged both Peter Smith's Concise Encyclopedia of the Baha'i Faith and Momen and Smith's article in the academic journal as needing to be verified for their reliability. It's funny how he takes these sources that have been published in peer-reviewed journals as needing verification, but at the same time believes all the statements in the blogosphere as totally accurate, and that they are fine for sourcing and for defining notability. This type of action is actually the opposite of Wikipedia policies. But I'll assume some more good faith, and comment on both the authors and the publishers of the articles, and hopefully he will take down his tags himself.
  • Peter Smith is the Chairmain of the Social Science Division, Mahidol University Internal College, Bangkok. He is the author of multiple books from the subject, and has mostly recently has a book that has been published by Cambridge University Press. WP:RS states, "Academic and peer-reviewed publications are usually the most reliable sources when available"
  • Dr Moojan Momen has a special interest in the study of the Baha'i Faith and Shi'i Islam, both from the viewpoint of their history and their doctrines. His principal publications in this field include: Introduction to Shi'i Islam (Yale University Press, 1985); The Babi and Baha'i Faiths 1844-1944:Some Contemporary Western Accounts (George Ronals, Oxford, 1982) and The Phenomenon of Religion (OneWorld, Oxford, 1999). He has contributed articles to Encyclopedia Iranica and Encyclopedia of the Modern Islamic World as well as papers to academic journals such as the International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, Past and Present and Iran and Reilgion. He is a Fellow of the "Royal Asiatic Society and a member of the British Society for Middle Eastern Studies", the "Society of Iranian Studies", the "British Association for the Study of Religion," and "The Association for Baha'i Studies." He has also had multiple articles published in the journal Religion, which the one that is being referenced is one of them. He is established expert in the specific field and has previously been published by multiple reliable third-party publications, as noted above.
  • Religion is a peer-reviewed academic journal, again making it classified as one of the most reliable types of sources.
  • Oneworld Publications is an independent publisher, with many of their books being very well reviewed by some of the top reviewers in the field.
Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 04:59, 11 April 2010 (UTC)

I'm also challenging the reliability and neutrality of "A concise encyclopedia of the Bahá'í Faith" by Peter Smith, 2000. For starters, it's written by just one person. No other editors are listed. The publisher, Oneworld Publications, does not seem to have an editorial policy and is run by a husband and wife team. Their "about us" page is here. Lastly, encyclopedias are tertiary sources. Please look at wp:rs and wp:or for the limitations of tertiary sources. - Stillwaterising (talk) 04:47, 11 April 2010 (UTC)

Secondary sources were only preferred until sometime recently. Tertiary sources are the best references.
This is why I hate Wikipedia's pretentions. Banning original research while maintaining a preference for secondary sources is illogical. The premeses are mutually exclusive.
With respect to Smith as an authority, he's an academic who's written extensively on Baha'i [9]. So, even if the encyclopedia were WP:SPS, he's an expert. MARussellPESE (talk)
I agree that "Academic and peer-reviewed publications are usually the most reliable sources" but how an encyclopedia written by some guy that's published at a a mom and pop publishing house going to compare to a major encyclopedia? Sure, Peter Smith is regarded as an expert in his field and it's technically not self-published, but it's far from academic or peer-reviewed. There's a review of it here. "Articles should be based on reliable, third-party, published sources with a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy." As far as the author, or the publisher goes there's no evidence of independent review. This would also put in to question the neutrality of this source. - Stillwaterising (talk) 05:17, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
Still, please stop reading policy to me. I've been editing here for over four years, and I don't need to be talked down to. You only need to refer to the points you're making, thanks. MARussellPESE (talk) 05:41, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
That same author is the person that Cambridge University Press decided to allow to publish a book on the Baha'i Faith, and in fact, Cambridge University Press thought that the content of the Concise Encyclopedia was good enough that large parts of it were incorporated in the book that were peer reviewed by Cambridge. In the Preface of the book published by Cambridge University Press book "An Introduction to the Baha'i Faith" it says "In preparing this book, I have drawn extensively from my Concise Encyclopedia of the Baha'i Faith and I extend my particular thanks to Oneworld Publications for permitting me to reuse material from that earlier work". So the material was good enough for Cambridge. Also as I noted above, there are lots of books from Oneworld who have received critical acclaim. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 05:30, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
I question whether this should be considered an encyclopedia in the usual sense, or more of a compendium. The Smith encyclopedia seems to pass Wikipedia's reliability standards, but shouldn't be considered as authoritative as Introduction to Baha'i Fath due to lack of peer review. In other words good, but not infallible. - Stillwaterising (talk) 06:49, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
Of course there are levels of reliability, and it's clear the Introduction to the Baha'i Faith would be considered more reliable, and compendium is probably a better phrase for the concise encyclopedia book. Your statement, however, that there is no peer review at OneWorld seems a little off. If you look at their collection of published books, they span over wide range of scholarship with many university professors and academics publishing with them. The reviews of their works have been commented on by the New York Times, Scientific American, Richard Dawkins, The Economist, multiple other University Professors, New Scientist, and others with very good reviews.[10],[11],[12],[13],[14],[15],[16],[17],[18],[19] There definitely must be editorial oversight with this publisher, but yes, not a reliable as an academic publisher such as Cambridge University Press. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 07:11, 11 April 2010 (UTC)


I would like to suggest that the lead (intro) be rewritten from a neutral point of view. Here's my summary of the lead as of this morning:

"Every religion has its problems. Some groups split off from the Baha'i Faith but their groups soon died off. There's only one true Baha'i Faith, our scriptures state this so. We (of the Haifa sect) greatly outnumber any other sects which are completely insignificant and no longer exist. (Oh yeah, did we forget to mention this is an article about those other sects?)"

Of course I paraphrased a little but I hope you get the point. The only sentence that's actually appropriate for the lead is "While Baha'is often claim that unlike every other religion the Baha'i Faith does not have any offshoots or sects, however in fact there have been several." which I added myself. From statements made at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Unitarian Bahaism there seems to be problems with article as a whole not fairly portraying Baha'i separatist. - Stillwaterising (talk) 23:15, 10 April 2010 (UTC)

The wording of first paragraph is phrases as such because most third-party reliable secondary sources phrase the topic in much the same way (ie. There has been challenges to the leadership to the Baha'i Faith, but most have died out.) For example, if you read the most current academic book about the Baha'i Faith, published by Cambridge University Press, a book of 213 pages, it uses virtually no space to mention these smaller groups. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 00:50, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
If you cut the "we" references and replaced it with "they" you've basically captured the the general consensus in the reliable sources. The article lead doesn't suggest that there aren't any, nor haven't been any, just that they generally fold up quickly.
I actually have Barrett, and the Christian missionary page you cite takes him out of context. I've corrected it. MARussellPESE (talk) 04:46, 11 April 2010 (UTC)

Here is a bibliographic list of 239 pieces of writing by schismatic or heretical Bahais: Some of these may be useful as references to improve the Baha'i divisions article by making it more neutral and objective. Telling both sides of the story of the various Bahai divisions is certainly possible to do with a wealth of references. Shiningdove (talk) 01:45, 13 April 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps, but WP:UNDUE is the yardstick here. "Both" sides don't get equal column inches when one represents a small minority views. If you take a look in the archives, you'll see lots of discussion on this. MARussellPESE (talk) 01:51, 13 April 2010 (UTC)
I'll take a look at the archives. I think the following should also be considered: According to the Undue Weight guidelines (WP:UNDUE), "In articles specifically about a minority viewpoint, it is appropriate to give the viewpoint more attention and space. However, such pages should make appropriate reference to the majority viewpoint wherever relevant, and must not reflect an attempt to rewrite content strictly from the perspective of the minority view. Specifically, it should always be clear which parts of the text describe the minority view, and that it is in fact a minority view. The majority view should be explained in sufficient detail that the reader may understand how the minority view differs from it, and controversies regarding parts of the minority view should be clearly identified and explained." Since this article is called Baha'i divisions, it certainly seems appropriate to give plenty of weight to what the proponents of those various divisions believe. This is supposed to be an article about the divisions themselves, after all. A general article about the Bahai faith should not have much information in it about the point of view of small divisions of the religion, but an article specifically about those divisions must present their point of view alongside the majoritarian Bahai view of the divisions. Otherwise it is an article that serves no purpose except to promote one particular point of view, that of a specific religious tradition telling why competing traditions are wrong. Such an article is not the kind of thing that belongs in an encyclopedia. Shiningdove (talk) 03:06, 13 April 2010 (UTC)
Actually, perhaps it would be useful to expand this article and change the title to something like Baha'i divisions and controversies. The purpose of the article would be to cover all the sectarian splits, attempted reform movements, conservative vs. liberal views of the religion and how those debates have manifested within the religion, plus the views of ex-Baha'is and critics of the religion. The purpose of the article would be to present both sides of the various divisions and controversies, without excessive weight toward either side of any issue. Shiningdove (talk) 03:13, 13 April 2010 (UTC)
This whole article is already about the minority views, and details their views in Wikipedia where they would otherwise be unacceptable due to WP:UNDUE. If you look other third-party encyclopedic-type articles about the various smaller divisions of the religion such as those published by MacEoin or Smith, they follow very much the same type of structure; the history of where the division came about, and what happened afterward. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 03:32, 13 April 2010 (UTC)
Have you not noticed that the overwhelming majority of the references in this article are to sources written by Bahais loyal to the Haifa organization or even high-level leaders of that organization themselves? Abdul-Baha, Shoghi Effendi Rabbani, Adib Taherzadeh (former Universal House of Justice member), and various Haifan Bahai authors loyal to these leaders and institutions. There are almost no statements in this article presenting non-Haifan Bahai views of these sectarian divisions, and hardly any references to sources written by those who have held such views, such as Mirza Muhammad Ali, Shuaullah Behai, Ibrahim George Kheiralla, Charles Mason Remey, Joel Marangella, Ahmad Sohrab, Ruth White, etc. Even the very sources referenced in this article collectively reveal that it's grossly one-sided. Shiningdove (talk) 05:24, 13 April 2010 (UTC)
I agree that Taherzadeh and Rabbani are probably used too often, and better third-party sources could be found such as the MacEoin and Smith articles I noted. Dealing with that problem, in my mind, is not best served, by adding to the problem by using other sources that are loyal to one side or the other, but instead reducing the dependence on those kind of sources, and instead use sources from more academic sources, that are published by third-party publishers. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 13:20, 13 April 2010 (UTC)

I'm being bold and striking the {{POV-check}} & {{Unbalanced}} tags because:

  1. Placing the POV tag was not the result of any consensus on the Unitarian Bahaism AfD page. It was a unilateral action on the part of that editor.
  2. The Unbalanced tag would violate WP:UNDUE if more than cursory reference were given to groups that, collectively, make up around 500 when compared to the five to seven million Bahai's.

MARussellPESE (talk) 17:55, 18 April 2010 (UTC)

Modern Unitarian Baha'is[edit]

I'm curious as to why there is no mention of the modern group. Jeff3000 claims that it doesn't use reliable sources, that's false. Under wp:sps the websites can be used as a source on the subject of the websites. - Stillwaterising (talk) 21:46, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Check Bahá'í_divisions#Aftermath "An modern academic observer has witnessed an attempt to revive the claims of Muhammad Ali in order to lend legitimacy to a newly-established sect avowing loyalty to Bahá'u'lláh but rejecting the authority that Bahá'u'lláh gave to 'Abdu’l-Bahá and the Universal House of Justice." which reflects the ref there and "In addition, Nigar Bahai Amsalem, the great-granddaughter of Bahá'u'lláh and granddaughter of both Mirza Muhammad Ali and Bahá'u'lláh's youngest son Badiullah was interviewed in the polemical[19] 2006 Israeli mockumentary film [20]Baha'is In My Backyard. It mentions that she has built a shrine at the tomb of Mirza Muhammad Ali and opposes the Universal House of Justice. She also withheld information on the extent of her opposition during her interview for the film.[" which reflects the respective refs. Smkolins (talk) 22:17, 19 April 2010 (UTC)
That section is inaccurate and even downright insulting. They accept Sen McGlinn's blog entry as a credible source, but not blog entries by Unitarian Bahais (UBs)? And note that they are accused of "avowing loyalty to Bahá'u'lláh but rejecting the authority that Bahá'u'lláh gave to 'Abdu'l-Bahá and the Universal House of Justice". THAT'S A LIE! UBs affirm that Abdu'l-Baha was the legitimate leader of the Faith after Baha'u'llah but claim he went too far in his leadership claims. And it was Abdu'l-Baha, not Baha'u'llah, who gave absolute authority to the Universal House of Justice. If you are going to criticize UBs, TELL ONLY THE TRUTH ABOUT THEM! Dale Husband 03:13, 18 May 2010 (UTC)
Cool it. We're discussing an article here, and if you feel that a particular source meets the criterion established by Wikipedia policy, include it. If the consensus, however, is that it does not meet Wikipedia's standards, then it shall be omitted. It's as simple as that, and no amount of yelling or accusing is going to help; in fact, it is liable to hurt your case. Peter Deer (talk) 07:37, 18 May 2010 (UTC)
Please note some of the changes from the article attempt. For one I established that the earlier challenge of Smith being a Baha'i was less sound because 1) I found another reference and 2) both of the sources are also represented on the editorial board responsible for the comment about the son of Ali coming to the states and publishing the magazine. Smkolins (talk) 22:24, 19 April 2010 (UTC)
All very strange - by their own account of their "doctrine" the "modern unitarians" in fact are very much closer to the "Free Baha'is" - who idolised the Master but considered His will to be a forgery and didn't accept the Guardianship. This article is in fact historically rather incomplete - dwelling very much on the various Remeyite splinters. IMHO if the Covenant Breakers are to have an article at all it ought to be a comprehensive one.--Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:47, 19 April 2010 (UTC)
Well numerically my experience reviewing materials shows the Remey originated groups numbered, and still number, larger numbers than any other of the small groups though all together they are still an infinitesimal assemblage compared to the group under the Universal House of Justice. However even within the groups of any size that exist they fundamentally disagree with eachother even as they disagree with the group under the House. They may be united in opposition to the House but they must disagree very quickly after that. The various Remey groups for example are generally bound by the interpretations of Shoghi Effendi (for example consider the issue of homosexuality.) And so on. Consider that the religion is only some 160 years old. Compare the first several hundred years of Christianity. Such tiny splinterings are almost entirely unknown in the case of Christianity, indeed they are not so much called groups in the case of early Christianity like Paul vs James_the_Just#Influence though each must have had individuals who supported them. We are hampered from being exhaustive by the relatively obscurity of all of them let alone independent reviews of the whole matter and most of what does exist mentions the Remey groups which returns us to the the article. But of course things can be amended.Smkolins (talk) 23:19, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Less than 2%[edit]

The lead currently says, "representing less than 2% of all Baha'is." I think this is obviously wrong. The verifiable sources we have on dissident groups places their number at a few hundred. 2% of all Baha'is (using 6 million) would indicate 120 thousand. Let's say we vastly inflate the number of adherents to the divisions to 6 thousand, that would indicate one tenth of one percent. I suggest we remove the reference to 2% or fix it to indicate "less than 0.1% of all Baha'is."

This question came up in the past and the problem is that nobody makes a verifiable statement about their cumulative size. Out of the two largest groups, one self-declared in court that they have 40 people, and another was researched by reliable sources indicating that they never had over 200 and their numbers plummeted in the 1990s to something like 40. Outside of that, there are no coherent groups of any size, just a handful of individuals here and there with blogs and forums. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 16:51, 20 April 2010 (UTC)

I agree in general ("far less than 1%", "numbering in the hundreds" or some such) but the problem I have is actual citations. I've read those kinds of numbers too but all the references go to 404 errors now. Have you got some live refs? Smkolins (talk) 17:04, 20 April 2010 (UTC)
See (Stone, Jon R. (ed) (2000). Expecting Armageddon, Essential Readings in Failed Prophecy. pp. 269–282.) for the group following Leland Jensen, and this brief about the court case. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 15:44, 21 April 2010 (UTC)
I am 100% certain that source "Bahai and Babi Schisms" [20] contained the text "representing less than 2% of all Baha'i" when I added that statistic on the 10th of April. It would seem that the source (Encyclopedia Iranica) changed since then. - Stillwaterising (talk) 14:14, 21 April 2010 (UTC)
The reference to 2% came from, "At least 98% of the adherents of the Babi & Baha'i faiths belong to the same church/denomination/religious body, the Baha'i World Faith (or simply "Baha'i Faith") with headquarters in Haifa, Israel." [21] That same site also says that Jensen's group is 144 thousand, which came from a self declared phone call to the group, and is a joking reference to the Revelation of St John. The reliable source (Stone) is from a team of researchers at the University of Montana observing the group for over a decade, and indicates that they are around 40 or less. Cuñado ☼ - Talk 15:44, 21 April 2010 (UTC)

Why were non- personal websites removed as personal and other edits undone without reason?[edit] describes Personal web pages as:

"created by an individual to contain content of a personal nature rather than on behalf of an employer or institution... Many contain biographical information, résumés, and blog posts. Many personal pages will include information about the author's hobbies, interests and information of interest only to friends and family of the author."

Please clarify which individual websites are of a personal nature or otherwise before removing them again...

Also, please notify me of any individual errors I might have made and give me 24 hours to fix or discuss them here...

Omnian (talk) 03:33, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia's policies on external links in the section on links to be avoided includes "Links to blogs, personal web pages", and thus I'm removed both links to personal websites and blogs, and those that are primary source material, which don't have a secondary source that notes it notability. I have also removed your additions that are not referenced by reliable seconadary sources, as well your removal of material that was previously properly sourced.
In regards to your {{citation needed}} tags, I have found sources in reliable sources for most of them.
In terms of the reorganization of the sections, the moving of the "American disputes" section is good because it makes it chronological. I also see why you tried changing the earlier sections as the sections were not completely chronological and didn't make a lot of sense. I have further reorganized them further, chronologically removing the section on pattern of response, and put the paragraphs in a chronological manner. In terms of the name Unitarian Baha'is, it doesn't fit to have that section so early because they were not really a distinct group until after the death of Abdu'l-Baha in terms of notability, most sources don't create a separate section that is called Unitarian Baha'is, but note that in passing that the groups that didn't follow Abdu'l-Baha were called at various times by various people as Behaists or Unitarians, and it's best to follow the manner of the secondary sources. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 04:48, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

What is the definition of "divisions"[edit]

Why even raise the issue of divisions of the Baha'i faith?

There have been some very small groups which has started their own versions of the Baha'i faith. But the numbers of supporters have always been limited to a few dozen individuals, almost always in the U.S.. This is less than 0.001% of all Baha'is.

The only case relevant to write about is the one about Mason Remey's claims, and then not because the size, but because the young Baha'i faith experienced a serious crisis when it suddenly had no successor after the Guardian Shoghi Effendi. --Caspiax (talk) 01:17, 13 September 2011 (UTC)

This is a secular site, and Baha'is (not to mention people of other Faiths, or no faith at all) cannot (and should not) decide what subjects should be "raised", especially about themselves. All anyone can do (or ought to be able to do) is to try to keep articles on such subjects (in particular those we'd perhaps rather weren't raised) balanced and factual. This subject does in fact attract a good deal more interest than you'd expect; and there is a real need for a "balanced and factual" article to be in place, if only to counter the distortions and lies circulating elsewhere. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 05:48, 14 September 2011 (UTC)

Wiki Policy, and how it impinges on this article.[edit]

The first criterion is that we present the majority view on any question, as reflected in the weight of published information. Coverage of minority views are given their "due weight". The official policy is at this link WP:weight

Another criterion is that we avoid conflict of interest - essentially individuals are not supposed to write or edit articles in a way that promotes their own interests. The official policy on this one is at this link WP:conflict

Finally, any article, or any edit to an existing article, should be referenced to a reliable source - it is actually quite startling how much of the factual matter already in the article is third-party rather than connected directly with ANY division of The Baha'i Faith. There are in fact references to sources that would definitely NOT be approved by the UHJ or any other "official" Baha'i organisation.

See also WP:NPOV and WP:OR

This note relates to large scale edits presenting an essentially alternative view to the article in its present form.

The Bahá'í censorship again. Fractioness is an USA thing and why is this fact erased from the article???[edit]

Today, and almost throughout the Bahá'í history after year 1900 Bahá'í fractioness have been and is a phenomenon typical for USA. Sometimes the fractions, with maybe 150-300 members in USA got 2-5 people in European countries (except Canada which is a little like USA in this question) as members of mailing lists, etc. But with the incident Mason Remey excluded, all small Bahá'í groups are created in USA, have their head offices in USA, and 99% of their followers in USA. Bahá'í fractioness is an USA thing, they love to start new Christian groups all the time so it's natural that Bahá'í also is a part of this folk soul and constitutional thing. It's a fact, but fenced with big secretiveness. But if someone add the fact that 99% of the fractionists are in USA and Canada on Wikipedia, it's immediately erased. Censorship is typical for Bahá'í articles on Wikipedia if one is deviating from the "correct history" preached - both by the big Bahá'í organization and by the small fractions. Just dare write the truth that the Báb, four years before He declared, got qualified teaching by the shaykhi leader Siyyid Kazim during a longer stay in the holy city of Karbala in 1839-40 and it's immediately erased. Okay, you maybe want a source for the fact that the fractionists are US Americans? That is not easy to find sources since nothing except the the lawsuits in court are published. (And they all took place in USA). Other incidents described in blogs, like these spy activities when wolves in sheep's clothing visit sheep gatherings and the report what took place to the other wolves, are all USA phenomenons. The fighting between Haifa Bahá'ís and fractionists on mailing lists and Bulletin Boards are between US Americans. My teacher, who is born in the USA and raised and educated in New York and Arizona and a linguist by profession, has studied language expressions and choice of words on these mailing lists and she verifies that the though discussions are between US Americans and no other people. And also – whatever name (Free Bahá'ís, Unitarian Bahá'ís, Reform Bahá'ís, Orthodox Bahá'ís, etc) – you can't find any offices, web sites, contact persons or email addresses outside USA. Vänligen, --Caspiax 02:21, 6 September 2015 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Caspiax (talkcontribs)

Wikipedia has policies including verifiability, No original research and Neutral Point of View, and guidelines for how to use those include reliable sources and self-published sources. Put together they mean that you usually need non self-published sources (not forums, blogs, etc) that are about a topic that is expressed by a significant population (for example there are people and sources for those that believe the Earth is flat, but they don't get to have a view on Wikipedia). So the answer to your question is Wikipedia policies. And by the way, there is another Wikipedia policy, and that is to assume good faith. The language and tone of your message alludes to you not having good faith for the other editors. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 13:26, 6 September 2015 (UTC)

Where are the divisions?[edit]

This article is crazy. Its fine to have the super detailed descriptions of succession, but only after the article provides a list of what divisions have existed and which ones are still extant. Most people going to an article called "Bahá'í divisions" simply do not care about an in-depth history of succession. — Preceding unsigned comment added by MaserShark (talkcontribs) 09:43, 20 November 2015 (UTC)

Well that's pretty much what happened to the divisions. They largely vanished in history which is in the details. --Smkolins (talk) 21:08, 20 November 2015 (UTC)
Nevertheless the article should begin with a clear list of what the divisions are and which, if any, still can be proven have any active members. One of the typical reasons a reader would click on a link to "Bahá'í divisions" or "Bahá'í sects" is to learn what divisions there have been. Trying to extract that information from the article as it stands is simply miserable. — Preceding unsigned comment added by MaserShark (talkcontribs) 07:15, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
Wading back into the article's text, is this an accurate list for the divisions mentioned in the article?
Society of Behaists
New History Society
Orthodox Bahá'í Faith
Orthodox Bahá'í Faith Joel Marangella version
Orthodox Bahá'í Faith under the Regency
Bahá'ís Under the Provisions of the Covenant
Bahá'ís Loyal to Jacques Soghomonian
The Remey Society
The House of Mankind and the Universal Palace of Order
The structure of this article is just fine. If you compare it to other religion divisions such as Christian denomination or Sects of Islam, the structure of those articles don't start of with lists, but in fact follow very much the structure of this page which is going through the history first, and then having sections for those religions, which is exactly what this page does. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 18:08, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
...Are you joking? Christian denomination has Major branches as its second section right after terminology which introduces the denominations in a taxonomic structure. Because that's the correct way to start an article about the divisions of a religion. Islamic schools and branches likewise approaches its article by laying out what schools and branches exist not hiding what divisions exist in the middle of succession details. Jumping into a history of succession is on the other hand not the correct way to approach this. The first thing after a basic introduction to the context of divisions within Bahá'í should similarly be to lay out what sort of divisions exist and then to give details about their history. Since Bahá'í doesn't have a lot of divisions we can go ahead and list all of them rather than just major branches. — Preceding unsigned comment added by MaserShark (talkcontribs) 19:04, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
Doing that would be undue weight given the size of most of the groups you want to list, making some groups just as important as the other divisions. The page correctly goes about giving the history of the divisions which never formed official groups, and listing as real organized groups is against the reliable sources. The only ones that were truly organized were the ones occuring after the passing of Guardian and they are correctly listed. -- Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 22:17, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
Agreed that the basic history, the key point of the reliable sources all around, is that the divisions are themselves entirely extreme minorities most of which don't even exist any more and their relevance is part of an overall history of the pattern of things as delineated. --Smkolins (talk) 00:45, 23 November 2015 (UTC)
First and regarding undue weight, Christian denomination presents the Assyrian Church of the East in the same list as Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodoxy, Anglicanism, and Protestantism with a note that it is much smaller in adherents and geographic scope now. That is an appropriate way to vary weight while not making it obnoxiously difficult to acquire the answer to "what distinct major branches exist". This article should follow it's lead. Possibly it would be best to present only some of the divisions near the beginning, after all some of these divisions seem like branches of branches. Decisions like that are best handled by those knowledgeable on the topic. Not putting any of them near the beginning though forces readers to trawl through the text of the entire article and hope they didn't miss anything to answer one of the core purposes of the article "what divisions are there".
Second "The only ones that were truly organized were the ones occurring after the passing of Guardian and they are correctly listed" is incorrect. None of them are listed at all so it is impossible for any of them to be correctly listed. Every division mentioned in this article is embedded in the text, none of them are called out so people don't have to wade through Bahá'í succession trivia to learn what divisions there are. — Preceding unsigned comment added by MaserShark (talkcontribs) 01:00, 23 November 2015 (UTC)
A couple points, the Christian Denomination page doesn't list out the Assyrian Church seperately, other than including to it in prose, just like this article does with most of it's comments. Secondly, the divisions created after the passing of the Guardian are listed specifically in the table of contents right at the beginning of the page just after the lead. That being said, it is also probably also correct to present the groups/types of divisions in the lead as you suggested. Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 23:39, 23 November 2015 (UTC)
It mentions the Assyrian Church in a distinct "these are major branches" sort of thing instead of incidentally mentioning it in the general text. The names of divisions are mentioned in the table of contents, but to use that as a list for someone who has just read to the table of contents and does not possess preexisting knowledge of Bahá'í divisions has certain problems. Allow me to paste the section in for convenient discussion.

4 Further development of Remey's followers

   4.1 Under the Hereditary Guardianship
   4.2 Orthodox Bahá'í Faith
   4.3 Reginald ("Rex") King
   4.4 Bahá'ís Under the Provisions of the Covenant
   4.5 Bahá'ís Loyal to Jacques Soghomonian
   4.6 The Remey Society
First of all it starts of by mentioning "Remey's followers". Within the context of divisions who is "Remey"? Are all extant and historical divisions of Bahá'í branches of "Remey's followers" or is he just one branch which spawned a number of subbranches? Also this is just referred to as "Further development" (Which incidentally I feel might be better as Further developments since religious sects don't really get more developed but rather are associated with developments) so is "Reginald ("Rex") King" standing in for a division or is he just someone important in the history of Remey's followers. Thus it is problematic for the reader to try to interpret the table of contents as a sort of "list of divisions you might check out" and they must really read the whole article if they are to learn what sort of divisions have existed in Bahá'í. It also may be useful to note that Bahá'í divisions so far (at least as far as I can tell) have fundamentally been a matter of succession controversies and not, for example, differences in theology.
It is easily obvious in the context of reading the article that Remey was mentioned in two sections along to the one you start with. Reginald it is a specific comparable break in line with the rest. And "succession" is an ongoing theme in the article already. Bringing up the points of theology would need sources (and there is an overlap between the definitions of succession and theology to the extent such issues derive from scripture.) --Smkolins (talk) 01:29, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
The context I was speaking in was however not that of someone who had read the article. As I said "but to use that as a list for someone who has just read to the table of contents and does not possess preexisting knowledge of Bahá'í divisions has certain problems". A list that is only coherent after you have already read the article anyway functionally doesn't even exist. Its quite true that to comment on theology would require sources. Whether there's been any divergences beyond those implicit in the succession controversy that started a division is a thing to perhaps keep in mind for the future of the article that I happened to think of while posting that. Its a significantly lower priority than introducing at least the "major" branches of Bahá'í divisions before the article goes into their history. — Preceding unsigned comment added by MaserShark (talkcontribs) 03:26, 24 November 2015 (UTC)