NEW Year celebrations for Ballarat's Baha'i community are about renewal, rejoicing and promoting a sense of oneness that is integral to their faith. Determined to keep the faith, they turned online with fellow Baha'i across the world to mark Naw-Ruz.
Ballarat Baha'i plans to keep using the platform to help others in isolation as fears and uncertainty rises during the coronavirus pandemic as a reminder no-one is alone.
The group is planning weekly, open sessions featuring Ballarat musicians and meditations to help lift spirits. Other sessions will feature yoga teachers.
Ballarat Baha'i's Della Vreeland said arts and culture was facing particularly tough times but music remained integral to help inspire people. Ms Vreeland said sessions were for anybody passionate about strengthening a sense of community and helping drive change.
While we're at home with family, we have more time to delve into much deeper aspects of life, living, inter-connection of the world and what this all really means.Della Vreeland, Ballarat Baha'i Community member
"Coronavirus has proven we are inter-connected across the world. There is no more viable time than now to appreciate that," Ms Vreeland said.
"While we're at home with family, we have more time to delve into much deeper aspects of life, living, inter-connection of the world and what this all really means.
"While everything else is cancelled, we want to keep trying our best to keep going and keep people together."
The Baha'i faith teaches the essential worth of all religions and unity of all people.
Baha'i across the world have been finding creative ways to promote positivity and connection.
Ballarat's Baha'i Community had events planned for City of Ballarat's Harmony Week, which coincides with the Baha'i new year but Ms Vreeland said this did not mean these had to stop. They have been taking inspiration from Baha'i in isolation across the world.
The community's next live-streamed reflections session is on Friday evening. The session will feature live music from Paige Duggan. Details via Ballarat Baha'i Community on Facebook.
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