The BahÃ¡'Ã Faith has members in 235 countries and territories throughout the world from over 2,100 ethnic, racial, and tribal groups and number some 5 million worldwide. At the heart of their belief is the conviction that humanity is a single people with a common destiny. In the words of BahÃ¡'u'llÃ¡h, the Founder of the Faith, "The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens." The BahÃ¡'Ãs are strong advocates for spiritual solutions on issues such as racial prejudice, gender equality, and religious intolerance.
The BahÃ¡'Ã Faith calls for the creation of a new peaceful world civilization based on principles of justice, prosperity, and continuing advancement. Embedded in the Faith is the belief that it is possible to create societies founded upon cooperation, trust, and genuine concern for others. Thus, attributes that characterize the BahÃ¡'Ã community today include unity among the races; the universality of the community where no one is left out; a new system of values that will enhance the development of a global civilization and where each member of the human race is regarded as a trust of the whole; a mechanism or administrative order that will influence the mode of decision-making and promote the ability to think and decide collectively; the will to address the problems confronting humanity by developing capacities within people themselves; and lastly, drawing on resources of both reason and faith to address challenging problems.The key principles of the BahÃ¡'Ã Faith are considered progressive and confront modern day issues. These 10 basic principles are as follows:
- Oneness: one God, one Humankind, and one Evolving Faith Elimination of all forms of prejudice Complete equality of women and men in all aspects of human society Belief that truth is one and, therefore, scientific and religious truths are in harmony Universal compulsory education for all children throughout the world Establishment of a world language that everyone will learn in addition to their native language World peace through world governance Elimination of the extremes of wealth and poverty Free and independent investigation of truth by every individual