Bahá'í Glossary: F
- The Fast
- Bahá'ís observe a 19-day period of fasting from March 2 through March 20 of each year. The Fast coincides with the month of 'Alá, the 19th (and last) month of the Bahá'í year. During this time, adult Bahá'ís abstain from eating and drinking between the hours of sunrise and sunset. A spiritual discipline, fasting is symbolic of restraint and of obedience to God. Children, the elderly, pregnant and nursing mothers, and the ill are exempted from fasting.
- A local gathering held on the first day of each Bahá'í month incorporating devotions, consultation on community events, and socialization. Because each Bahá'í month is nineteen days long, Feasts occur once every nineteen days.
- An informal gathering designed to allow anyone interested in learning about the Bahá'í Faith to explore its teachings and history in a no-pressure atmosphere. Increasingly, this term is being replaced by more descriptive phrases, such as "introductory meeting."
- The financial resource that supports the work of an administrative body. Bahá'í Funds exist to support the Universal House of Justice, each National Spiritual Assembly, each Local Spiritual Assembly, each Continental Board of Counsellors, and other institutions as necessary. Only Bahá'ís can contribute to these Funds.
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