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May 9th, 2013
03:20 PM ET

Rainn Wilson has faith in life after 'The Office'

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='EricCNNBelief']

(CNN) - Dwight K. Schrute was many things: paper salesman, beet farmer, lovable dork. Though he came from Amish stock, Schrute showed more interest in martial arts than Bibles and buggies.

But the man who played Schrute for nine years calls religion central to his life, and as Rainn Wilson transitions to life after “The Office,” his Baha’i faith is taking center stage.

Wilson is on the forefront of a campaign called “Five Years Too Many” that calls for the release of seven Baha’i volunteer leaders who have been imprisoned in Iran for the past five years.

“People need to know that this has happened and that this is happening and they don't,” Wilson said. “There are Baha'is rotting in jail on a 20-year sentence on trumped up charges simply because they have a certain set of faith beliefs that run against the theocracy in Iran."

The move from actor to advocate for a world religion is a big shift for Wilson. After a failed movie career and a lot of soul searching he is at peace with his television success and knows that his career might have peaked with “The Office,” which ends next Thursday after nine years on the air.

“It is probable that this was the high point in my career and the most awesome thing I'll ever be involved in,” Wilson told CNN’s Jake Tapper in an interview. “I just feel tremendous gratitude.”

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These days, Wilson barely resembles his onscreen character. He sports a beard with a surprising amount of gray hair sprinkled throughout. His hair was mussed and he didn’t a wear brown suit and a yellow shirt. His were glasses more LA hipster than Scranton nerd. He’s ambivalent about life after “The Office.”

“It's bittersweet. I love the people there so much. At the same time, it was time for it to go away.”

From famous to influential

Despite being the most famous Baha’i in America, Wilson had been a reluctant spokesman for the faith. In a meeting with religion reporters in 2010, Wilson said it’s somewhat “sad” that a “big dorky” guy has become the faith’s most recognizable face, at least in the United States.

Still, Wilson has nothing but praise for the “beautiful faith I grew up in.”

Baha’is believe there is one God who has sent down numerous messengers, including Jesus, the Buddha, Krishna, Moses, Mohammad and Baha’u’llah, whom they believe is the most recent divine messenger.

The teachings of Baha’u’llah, who was born in Iran in 1817 but was exiled from his homeland, form the foundation of the Baha’i faith. He died in 1892.

Globally there are 5 million Baha’is in more than 200 countries, including 170,000 in the United States, according to the faith’s leaders.

Like other world religions, the Baha’i faith grew during the social tumult and soul searching of the 1960s.

But if the best way for a religion to grow is a healthy combination of converts and babies, Baha’is are doubly disadvantaged. Members of the faith are forbidden from proselytizing and babies born to Baha'i parents are not automatically considered adherents.

While Bahai’s don’t aggressively seek converts, they are desperately trying to drum up support for their persecuted fellow believers in Iran.

#5YearsTooMany

Baha’i leaders say the seven were taken into custody in May 2008. In August 2010 they were sentenced to 20 years each in prison for espionage, propaganda against the Islamic republic and the establishment of an illegal administration.

The U.S. State Department and human rights groups have condemned Iran’s treatment of Baha'is.

"In addition to killings, executions, and arrests, Baha’is suffered frequent government harassment and persecution, and their property rights generally were disregarded," the State Department wrote in a 2012 report.

One of the imprisoned leaders is Fariba Kamalabadi. Her brother, Iraj Kamalabadi, told CNN, “It has been very difficult for them to spend five years of their prime time in prison, even a minute of it was unnecessary and too many.”

Hollywood’s most famous atheist

Wilson is a person of faith, but he has Hollywood’s most famous atheist to thank for his rise to stardom.

The “The Office” was created by British comedian Ricky Gervais and first aired on the BBC. Gervais, an avowed atheist, regularly and caustically skewers religions of all kinds.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

“I respect his beliefs,” Wilson said, while acknowledging that Gervais might not respect his. “I thank him for creating ‘The Office’ though. Because I wouldn't have a job without that and he's a brilliant mind.”

As “The Office” comes to an end, Wilson said he plans to travel with his wife and young son. He knows that he may never again get a role as good as Dwight Schrute. But he’s at peace with that, in part because of his Baha’i faith.

“My faith grounds me and centers me and gives me focus, and I'm very grateful for that.”

CNN's Jake Tapper and Moni Basu contributed to this report

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Baha'i • Belief • Iran • Religious violence

soundoff (396 Responses)
  1. lionlylamb

    Destinations for Life come to an ending sometimes early and also of time's late. One does not have to believe in an afterlife to become reborn once again back into the kingdom domains of God. Death marks the end of one life and bears the beginning of a new life whether one now believes it or not. With no memories of this life, one is born back into God's kingdom domain free from this life's encroachments.

    May 10, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION,

      Then, are you to dismiss that before we were born here upon the celestially consecrated we were not living a life within the Godly kingdom domains of reciprocal reciprocities correlated by the powers unknown? Were we not divided within our understandings then as we now are today? One may never know God's face and might forever be given another life to live in a never ending cycle of God loving all God's created manifestations. God is the living essence of Life itself.

      May 10, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION

      I have not denied life before birth in form of a spirit, but do not agree with your quotation of new life, because spirit never dies, and the body dies in absence of spirit. life after death is not a new life, but continuation of life in a different form, capable of feeling pain and happiness, but not able to act upon, as human form he/she was able to with a choice. Mout is divine word for death, meaning end of choice.

      May 10, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
    • STFU

      absurdity of religious scholars, nothing more, stupids are kissing each other's asses

      May 10, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
  2. ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION

    I am having memory lapses, where am I?

    May 10, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
  3. lionlylamb

    Seek first the kingdom domains of God and once your vision settles, you will know that one's embodiment is where the kingdom domains of God are to be found. For: the ‘depths of atomized inwardness’ are as far away as the outward distant stars in the night skies. Either direction is as stained evolutions upon the inner and outer chasms of all issues cosmological. This earth of one's birth is a celestial wonder and our bodies are made wondrous by the evolutionary trails as being trailering wanderings of atomized cosmological constructs of cellular conditionings made manifested and is a testimonial to all celestial manifestations seeded within living cellular combinations of atomized cloisters.

    May 10, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
    • sam stone

      blah, blah, fvcking blah

      May 10, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
  4. palintwit

    Sarah Palin's "Book of Baby Names" is due out any day now. Here is a sneak peek at some of her favorites... Spatula, Trig-tard, Pinworm, Checkvalve, Bristol-twit, Mudflap, Nozzle-breath, Fargo. They are all great suggestions. I think we're going to name our daughter Spatula.

    May 10, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
  5. meifumado

    ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn!

    May 10, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
    • mama k

      Is that Klingon, meif? You probably mixed turkey in a Reuben to make this happen.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • meifumado

      @ Mama k

      Not a fan of Lovecraft?

      And I would never ruin a Reuben. I like fatty corned beef on mine, lean is for fools. =)

      May 10, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
  6. STFU

    I thought it was worth breaking news:

    "The Archdiocese of Newark has paid $650,000 to settle molestation claims brought by five men against a former New Jersey priest now awaiting trial on unrelated s ex charges in Missouri.

    The settlement

    The Rev. Carmen Sita pleaded guilty in 1982 to s exually assaulting a teenage boy at St. Aloysius Church in Jersey City. Sentenced to five months’ probation, Sita changed his name to Gerald Howard and was soon shuffled to a parish in the Diocese of Jefferson City, Mo.

    The Newark archbishop at the time, Peter Gerety, never informed the public of the name change. Howard would go on to molest at least three more children in Missouri, authorities said. Charged in 2010, he remains jailed on $1.5 million bond while he awaits trial."

    May 10, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • .

      Little girl rape part of Islam, Mohammed, wife, married age 6, raped age 9, secular moron islamabot douche, ignorant. Speak not of religion, fraud, hind, liar, knows nothing of truth, troll, clown.

      May 10, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
  7. Doc Vestibule

    The B'Hai have a rough time in the Middle East.
    Becuase they try to reoncile all the different Abrahamic religions, they're hated by everyone.
    Christians persecute them because they don't buy into the Trinity and Muslims kill them because they don't say that Mohammed is the last prophet.
    I suppose it's nice that the two sides can at least agree to hate the same people.

    May 10, 2013 at 8:31 am |
    • Science

      Morning Doc................the old pitch fork ?

      Update :

      See for yourself below.................The fairy in the sky did NOT create us !

      Monkey Math: Baboons Show Brain's Ability to Understand Numbers ..........E = mc2..............(U-Pb) numbers do not lie !

      May 3, 2013 — Opposing thumbs, expressive faces, complex social systems: it's hard to miss the similarities between apes and humans. Now a new study with a troop of zoo baboons and lots of peanuts shows that a less obvious trait – the ability to understand numbers – also is shared by humans and their primate cousins.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130503132719.htm

      OR.........take a ride on a DINO.

      Fossil records are better to read than the nasty bible..................no god(s) required !

      Oldest? New 'Bone-Head' Dinosaur Hints at Higher Diversity of Small Dinosaurs

      May 7, 2013 — Scientists have named a new species of bone-headed dinosaur (pachycephalosaur) from Alberta, Canada. Acrotholus audeti (Ack-RHO-tho-LUS) was identified from both recently discovered and historically collected fossils. Approximately six feet long and weighing about 40 kilograms in life, the newly identified plant-eating dinosaur represents the oldest bone-headed dinosaur in North America, and possibly the world.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130507124800.htm

      The Science Guy takes on creationism

      CNN|Added on November 24, 2012

      http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/us/2012/11/24/intv-nye-creationism.cnn

      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/05/when-christians-become-a-hated-minority/comment-page-95/#comments

      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/07/biden-urges-faith-leaders-to-pressure-lawmakers-on-background-checks/#comments

      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2012/09/06/richard-dawkins-evolution-is-not-a-controversial-issue/comment-page-14/#comment-2333546

      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/05/when-christians-become-a-hated-minority/#comments

      And

      ..NO ANGELS with PITCH FORKS the old pope KICKED them in OFF the TEAM last year !

      From Soup to Cells—the Origin of Life

      http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/IIE2aOriginoflife.shtml

      Pope's book on Jesus challenges Christmas traditions

      By Laura Smith-Spark, CNN

      updated 10:56 AM EST, Fri November 23, 2012

      http://www.cnn.com/2012/11/22/world/europe/vatican-pope-jesus-book/index.html?iref=allsearch

      All these years there are suppose to be angels.......................then poof go the angels according to the old pope;.......

      where are the morals there ?

      Hey James Madison................religion has none it looks like.............with the comments on this blog.

      The Big question is ETHICS ! does religion have any ?

      The Ethics of Resurrecting Extinct Species

      Apr. 8, 2013 — At some point, scientists may be able to bring back extinct animals, and perhaps early humans, raising questions of ethics and environmental disruption.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130408165955.htm

      May 10, 2013 at 9:01 am |
    • PaulB

      Doc
      People are dying, Doc. I don't care if they're dying because of their superst.itious beliefs, it just isn't funny.

      May 10, 2013 at 10:10 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @PaulB
      Yes, people are dying due to religious conflicts in the MIddle East.
      While it is tragic, it is not news. It has been happening daily for thousands of years over there.

      At the height of the 1st Gulf War in 1991, Sadaam Hussein was persecuting the Kurdish people more than he usually did.
      They began a massive migration into the mountains between Iraq and Turkey, taking only what provisions they could carry with them. At it's height, the camp held 160,000 people, many of whom were dying from malnutrition and dehydration.
      During the 2 months the camp existed, aid flew in from all around the world.
      Now, the climate in the mountains is much harsher than on the ground. The temperature can dip quite low at night and very few of the refugees were equipped to deal with it.
      In response to the problem, the Levi Strauss company shipped appropriate clothing as a humantarian gesture.

      The Kurdish people refused to wear the clothing. They chose to suffer and die, to the point of neglekting their children's warmth, becuase "Levi" is a Jewish name.

      Is that funny? Of course not. But humour is an important coping mechanism, lest we become overwhelmed with the tragedy of it all.
      Man is the animal who laughs. We laugh becuase of pain. It is a sharing to try and cope with pain, sorrow and defeat.

      May 10, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • lionlylamb

      Doc V.

      Societal classifications become moot points within kempt and cultured generalizations. The most high God of All Creations great and small cannot be upset by fragmentations of socially disfigured lemon-aide sales-folk ever scratching and clawing upon the sensitive legs of those tempered and unmoving by their spirit orientated views. My beliefs on God and God's kingdom domains will never be bent nor swayed by tawdry fragments of socialized dysentery.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
    • Prisoner of the Most Great Prison

      The Greatness of this Day is such that one and all will rise up against Him, yet alone and shackled, He is victorious over His enemies. Such is the power of Baha

      June 24, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
  8. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    May 10, 2013 at 6:02 am |
    • Mirosal

      No, it doesn't, and no, it can't.

      May 10, 2013 at 6:33 am |
    • Science

      Hey Cap't..........a Q tip will change things...........so you have a job to do no?

      For all creationists and ID believers...............IT only takes minutes to figure IT out. No fairy in the sky needed !

      New Device Can Extract Human DNA With Full Genetic Data in Minutes

      May 6, 2013 — Take a swab of saliva from your mouth and within minutes your DNA could be ready for analysis and genome sequencing with the help of a new device.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130506132100.htm

      May 10, 2013 at 6:46 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      For one brief, shining moment it seemed as though prayer-bot had finally gone away. *sigh*

      Prayer does change things – for the worse.
      o The John Templeton Foundation funded a 10 year, $2.4 million dollar study involving 1,800 cardiac patients to measure the effectiveness of intecessory prayer.
      The patients were broken into three groups. Two were prayed for; the third was not. Half the patients who received the prayers were told that they were being prayed for; half were told that they might or might not receive prayers.
      Analyzing complications in the 30 days after the operations, the researchers found no differences between those patients who were prayed for and those who were not.
      Over the longer term, patients who knew they were being prayed for had a higher rate of post-operative complications like abnormal heart rhythms, perhaps because of the expectations the prayers created, the researchers suggested.
      A 1997 study at the University of New Mexico, involving 40 alcoholics in rehabilitation, found that the men and women who knew they were being prayed for actually fared worse.

      May 10, 2013 at 8:32 am |
    • nope

      @doc vestipuke
      nope

      May 10, 2013 at 11:09 am |
    • nope

      @science
      nope

      May 10, 2013 at 11:10 am |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      CA: They've released you for the weekend, how unfortunate for us! Since when did prayer become a thing only pertinent to the USA???

      May 10, 2013 at 11:36 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!

      May 10, 2013 at 11:56 am |
    • Which God?

      @ca. I don't think ca stands for capitan america. I think it means capitan azzhole. You are the biggest pos on here, making even HS look good. You are probably an "armchair hero," never having done anything to serve your country. I bet the only thing you do is eat fast food, swill your beer, rant at your wife and any one who disagress with your fvcking myopic viewpoint. Azzhole. There's your sign {*}.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • Really?

      "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things"

      That's why the data, has shown that atheists have happier and healthier lives than conservative Christians. Your post is built on a lie!

      May 10, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • Science

      HEY CA.................you know .............where it goes !

      May 10, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • Romnesia

      Then pray for an escape from superst<bition

      May 10, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
  9. faith

    i am converting to FSMism. much more evidence for her. she's been around longer than jesus christ when he had
    his moment of doubt and pain. (and made damn sure that pilate washed his hands and sealed his fate)

    May 9, 2013 at 11:50 pm |
    • faith

      A My father took the side of my mother, they
      even brought in the Chancellor. They were all lined
      up against you but you kept Figgy's jewels.

      E You know that too, do you ? And you've
      learned to call the great Catherine " Figgy " ?

      A We always called her that. And sometimes
      we'd give the same nickname to Olga because she
      had such an eye for the men. Tatiana used to tease
      her and

      E (agitated, rising}'. Stop. ... I forbid it. I
      forbid you to bandy those names.

      A (roused} : They're my sisters. I can speak of
      them if I choose.

      E Impostor!

      A You call me that ?

      E Yes. If you had any decency you would
      stop this masquerade. ... I will pay you, give you
      more than these scoundrels will, I warrant, once you
      tell them I'm not letting you mount my shoulders to
      gather your golden plums.

      A (turning from her) : Go away. Leave me.

      E I'm offering you money.

      A Go away, please.

      E You're giving up, are you ?

      A So it wasn't enough to have suffered all that,
      the cellar, the asylum, the horror, the cruelty, the
      emptiness ? ... It was also necessary that I should
      meet you again like this.

      E The tragic scene of despair. You're for
      getting nothing.

      A Say what you like. I am no longer able to
      struggle. Oh, how can anyone who has suffered so
      much have so little heart for suffering ?

      E I am sorry if your failure to win me over is
      such a cruel disappointment, mademoiselle. (She
      turns and goes towards doorway on prompt side.}

      A (crying out} : Don't go !

      May 10, 2013 at 12:48 am |
    • faith

      Once in Royal Davids City stood a lowly cattle shed,
      Where a mother held her baby.
      You'd do well to remember the things he later said.
      When you're stuffing yourselves at the Christmas parties,
      You'll just laugh when I tell you to take a running jump.
      You're missing the point I'm sure does not need making
      That Christmas spirit is not what you drink.

      So how can you laugh when your own mothers hungry,
      And how can you smile when the reasons for smiling are wrong?
      And if I just messed up your thoughtless pleasures,
      Remember, if you wish, this is just a Christmas song.

      (Hey! Santa! pass us that bottle, will you?)

      tull

      and its only the giving that makes you what you are

      May 10, 2013 at 2:00 am |
    • faith

      many r converting to FSMism. it makes perfect sense. 55 cents each or 3 for 2$. bonus points for each new believer you bring to the fait. special shirts with your initials signed by her majesty. 30 days no interest on all preapproved family purchases. matching socks and underwear. guaranteed no persecution for one year or your money back. free advanced divinity degrees online for the first 63,755 to register. free parking. babysitting available. pay as you enter

      plenty of evidence. we work on the basis of the law of diminishing returns. the great book comes out this fall. it explains everything ("love is all there is, can you dig it!" order your dozen today for substantial savings)

      May 10, 2013 at 2:16 am |
    • .

      bull sh it

      May 10, 2013 at 6:00 am |
    • .

      Faith has finally gone off the rails on a crazy train.

      May 10, 2013 at 11:41 am |
    • Arthur Bryant

      Pleased to meetchu!

      May 12, 2013 at 12:58 am |
  10. Peter Pantheist

    I'm tired of talking about gods and politics...who wants to talk about the thing under the bed?

    May 9, 2013 at 11:25 pm |
    • pickle

      Imagine that you're wrong, that God really did form the universe, and he really did send his son Jesus to die for the sins of those that would believe him. That Jesus showed up as a man, and went willingly to be beat and cut to near death, then allowed them to nail him to a cross to die. And when he rose again the third day, God didn't have the angels wipe them all out, but left it hidden, so you could decide for yourself to believe Jesus or not.

      I believe God, he's right, he's always been right... and he's the best there is, anywhere at any time.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:57 am |
    • saggyroy

      You want to talk about empty pizza boxes?

      May 10, 2013 at 6:09 am |
    • guest

      Do you mean: "From dust you came, to dust you shall return." Gensis 3:19

      May 10, 2013 at 6:58 am |
    • Science

      Guest ...............Not dust......................but SOUP .

      The ORIGIN story is bullsh-it...............so is the bible............... nasty !

      From Soup to Cells—the Origin of Life

      http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/IIE2aOriginoflife.shtml

      May 10, 2013 at 7:11 am |
    • Which God?

      pickle has been playing with his pickle again. He imagines it to be a god, so he strokes it several times a day, imagining that it will make something happen. Alas, nothing does, and pickle gets pickeled again.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
  11. Chad

    Where is all the scathing ridicule of Rainn for believing in Baha'i?

    May 9, 2013 at 10:35 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Why would you expect it, Chad? Atheists don't care what a person believes, so long as that person doesn't expect everyone else to drop their beliefs and immediately convert and so long as that person doesn't expect congress to make preferential laws and such for them.

      If he comes here to spout his religious nonsense or if any others of his faith do the same, we atheists will give him the same treatment as we give any other god believer spouting foolish nonsense.

      You just don't get it, do you, liar?

      May 9, 2013 at 10:40 pm |
    • MrCrewel Dude

      Chad, STFU!

      May 9, 2013 at 10:45 pm |
    • PaulB

      Baha'i is a fairly peaceful religion, whereas Christianity has been linked to military action quite a bit. Baha'i has some kooky beliefs, whereas Christianity is just absurd. Baha'i is quiet and uninvolved in the lives of most Americans, whereas Christians force their views into everything that happens in this country.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:15 am |
    • Chad

      The really big reason is that Baha’i isnt Judeo/Christianity, so you really dont care.

      Same with Islam..

      atheism opposes one God and one God only, the God of Israel.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:25 am |
    • Hepcat

      At the moment, the only batshlt insane people trying to ruin my life are Christians and Muslims and Jews.
      All religion needs to be destroyed and removed from the brains of ignorant people. Did you think no one has ever said that here?
      Why is it that Chad continues to be a retarded poe troll? Is it an atheist pretending to be a poe? What is Chad?

      May 10, 2013 at 2:31 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      The God you've hijacked, Chad, has no special appeal. It's simply the one that is most ardently promoted by the most amusing people here. However, are you sure you wouldn't like to convert to the Baha'i religion? It seems a bit more upright than yours (which begins with pilfery of other religions, involves human sacrifice and ritual cannibalism, and proceeds by lies and misrepresentation of history and science).

      Bahá'u'lláh has declared that religion must be in accord with science and reason. If it does not correspond with scientific principles and the processes of reason, it is superstition. For God has endowed us with faculties by which we may comprehend the realities of things, contemplate reality itself. If religion is opposed to reason and science, faith is impossible; and when faith and confidence in the divine religion are not manifest in the heart, there can be no spiritual attainment.

      May 10, 2013 at 8:12 am |
    • Saraswati

      Chad wrote:

      "atheism opposes one God and one God only, the God of Israel."

      I wonder if living a few years in China might shake his scary level of stupidity on this and related subject. His extremely sheltered life (i'm guessing his biggest travel experience is maybe a school trip to Canada for a weekend) coupled with a desperate need for certainty and a growing paranoia have got him saying some of the most ignorant things I've ever heard.

      May 10, 2013 at 9:29 am |
    • PaulB

      Chad
      Well, the God of Israel is the same as Allah, so we're criticizing the God of all Abrahamic religions equally. It's funny that you would include the "Judeo" part in your jab at us though. As a Christian, you actually dismiss the Jewish concept of a non-trinitatarian God just as much as you do the Muslim. There is no way that you are worshipping the same God as Jews do if you accept the definition of God that Jews actually have.

      May 10, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • Paul

      Man, is Chad really this dumb, or does he just pretend to be? Is his goal to make people think that all Christians are as dumb as he is?

      May 10, 2013 at 10:16 am |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      Chad, you moron, the Baha'i make up about a hundredth of a percent of people in the US. Christians make up abuot 86% of the people in the US. We may as well talk poorly of people who believe in the Loch Ness Monster.

      I stand by my original reply to you. If Baha'i folk come on here spouting ridiculous crap, we'll jump all over them, but otherwise, they're just not that important. When Christians make up about a hundreth of a percent and the Baha'i make up 86%, the criticism will be all theirs just like it's all yours right now.

      What an idiot.

      May 10, 2013 at 10:22 am |
    • Which God?

      Chad says:The really big reason is that Baha’i isnt Judeo/Christianity, so you really dont care.

      Same with Islam..

      atheism opposes one God and one God only, the God of Israel.

      Chad, even for you, that is the most stupid, ignorant and inane post ever. You get dumber as you go along. Run along and go tell your mother she wants you.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
    • Saraswati

      I've actually wondered some times whether, given both his quantiy and his inconsistent quality and temperament, Chad might not be an individual but a shared handle for members of some ID organization.

      May 10, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
    • sam stone

      chad: when was the last time that baha'i tried to deny others their civil rights based on the teachings of their religion?

      May 10, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
    • sam stone

      i think he is that bat spit crazy

      sort of entertaining, in a watch-the-gopher-run-and-hide way

      May 10, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
  12. faith

    hey rainin! loved u as dwight. u were great.

    alumni of new trier! dig it

    god bless u bro

    May 9, 2013 at 10:30 pm |
    • Akira

      Are you from Winnetka, faith?

      May 9, 2013 at 11:39 pm |
  13. Mirosal

    I saw 2 episodes of "The Office" ... it's listed as a sit-com, but can someone please tell me, it was a situation, but WHERE the (bleep) was the comedy?? .. I'm still waiting to hear the first joke from that show.

    May 9, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
    • saggyroy

      2 episodes won't do it. The show's Brit origins give it a very dry sense of humor.

      May 10, 2013 at 6:03 am |
    • saggyroy

      My fav line is when Dwight had a childrens petting zoo: "The petting zoo closes at 2:00, and the goat roast starts at 3:00."

      May 10, 2013 at 6:05 am |
  14. STFU

    "20-year sentence" is slap on the wrist, they could have hanged them publicly!!! At least, when they'll return they will be still alive, just 20 years older than they left. You know the risk of going into muslim countries !!!!

    May 9, 2013 at 7:22 pm |
    • STFU

      May the Amitabha Buddha Bless You.

      May 9, 2013 at 7:38 pm |
    • Dcya

      Risk of going to a muslim country? They Bahá'í Faith was born in that country and these people are also born there.

      May 10, 2013 at 12:28 am |
    • Hepcat

      It was born in the middle of a muslim country, so they have no excuse for anything that happens to them.
      Some of them left Iran and then RETURNED, showing they did not care about what Muslim idiots would do to them.
      Fuck 'em.

      May 10, 2013 at 2:55 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Same thing for America. You don't like Christians running he show but that's just the way we roll here baby. You should have thought of that before you were born here.

      May 10, 2013 at 9:14 am |
    • Hepcat

      Iran is a theocracy. Anyone who lives in a theocracy is fucked. Bill thinks we live in a theocracy. Bill is epically stupid.

      May 10, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Hepcat

      By the way, Bill. I would gladly slash my way past any christards like you who get in my way, so stay out of my way.
      This is not a theocracy. If it were, there would be bloodbaths, civil war, and slime like you would be first to go.

      May 10, 2013 at 10:11 am |
  15. lionlylamb

    Seek first the kingdom domains of God and once your vision settles, you will know that one's body is where the kingdom domains of God are to be found. For: the ‘depths of atomized inwardness’ are as far away as the outward distant stars in the night skies. Either direction is as stained evolutions upon the inner and outer chasms of all issues cosmological. This earth of one's birth is a celestial wonder and our bodies are made wondrous by the evolutionary trails as being trailering wanderings of atomized cosmological constructs of cellular conditionings made manifested and is a testimonial to all celestial manifestations seeded within living cellular combinations of atomized cloisters. May 8, 2013 at 5:04 pm

    In one's days of living away at Life, kids, husbands and wives, what rights does one have in living the 'atomic' way of Life branched to its most divisible means that political socialism will allow? The blueprints to becoming 'banner yielding' socialists are cemented with many types of cultures be they even cult-driven: for the science orientated oceanic drifts of cultured socialisms will ever lead the ways to and from all customs-related cultural recognitions. Those who eat high off the hog have way too many piglets to continue on without cutting off some fat occasionally. May 8, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    DNA, the spiraled 'atomizational' staircases of Godly domains, the engine rooms inside all types of cells be they a singularity or be they of cloistered relatives, are the celled brain-yards of DNA accountability which contains all the information from the very first cell ever created onwards thru time to present day cells, a sub-micro-atomized cosmology of extra-curricular activations synonymously conjured in living metamorphisms of meandering cellular feasibilities toward opted spectral visualizations yet to be seen in fullness within our faulted chasm means of mediocre atomic spectroscopy. May 9, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    Anti-s e x u a l behaviorisms such as abortions leaves the placating 'abortioned' holding sensations of emptiness within their vacuumed brain yards chasms of anti-Life parameters. May 9, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    Destinations for Life come to an ending sometimes early and also of time's late. One does not have to believe in an afterlife to become reborn back into the kingdom domains of God. Death marks the end of one life and bears the beginning of a new life whether one now believes it or not. With no memories of this life, one is born back into God's kingdom domain free from this life's encroachments. May 9, 2013 at 5:29 pm

    May 9, 2013 at 5:34 pm |
    • Agnostic

      With respect (I am not one of the "haters" I swear)..but here's my point...

      Your quote: "Death marks the end of one life and bears the beginning of a new life whether one now believes it or not."

      My point: How do you confirm this?!? How can anybody possibly know something like that? There is zero evidence to support the existence of a soul or a spirit. Even ghost sightings turn out to be nil.

      That's my only point...no ill intent I know how these boards are.
      Peace.

      May 9, 2013 at 6:33 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Agnostic

      May 9, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Agnostic

      May 9, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Agnostic,

      One's desiring to draw out an 'iffy' trump card vs. faith's contemplative meanderings by an 'old man' is mustard on the corndogs. Honestly Agnostic, I have no desires to shove nor even be shoved. Your Word and my Word have been deeply creviced and we are divided by faith's issues abridged via our rocky knowledge of atomized and celestial and even cellular cosmologies. Until you Agnostic might venture forth and consider the self-similarities of the atomic and the stellar, my Word will ever remain an elusive issue for you to sense a familiarity of my Word Nature.

      One does not have to believe another's 'faith issues', only keep them close to one's eyes in their mind of perceptivity.

      May 9, 2013 at 7:07 pm |
  16. Reality

    Dear Rainn,

    Putting the kibosh on all religion in less than ten seconds: Priceless !!!

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Abraham i.e. the foundations of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are non-existent.

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Moses i.e the pillars of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have no strength of purpose.

    • There was no Gabriel i.e. Islam fails as a religion. Christianity partially fails.

    • There was no Easter i.e. Christianity completely fails as a religion.

    • There was no Moroni i.e. Mormonism is nothing more than a business cult.

    • Sacred/revered cows, monkey gods, castes, reincarnations and therefore Hinduism fails as a religion.

    • Fat Buddhas here, skinny Buddhas there, reincarnated/reborn Buddhas everywhere makes for a no on Buddhism.

    Added details available upon written request.

    A quick search will put the kibosh on any other groups calling themselves a religion.

    For example:

    "In the Bahá'í Faith, religious history is seen to have unfolded through a series of divine messengers, each of whom established a religion that was suited to the needs of the time and the capacity of the people. These messengers have included Abrahamic figures as well as Dharmic ones – Krishna, Moses, Buddha, Jesus, Muhammad, and others. For Bahá'ís, the most recent messengers are the Báb and Bahá'u'lláh. In Bahá'í belief, each consecutive messenger prophesied of messengers to follow, and Bahá'u'lláh's life and teachings fulfilled the end-time promises of previous scriptures."

    Just too much blending to give any credence to the Baha'i Faith plus the "kiboshing" of many components of this blend as noted previously puts a very BIG NO all over it.

    May 9, 2013 at 5:18 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Keep on keeping on Reality.

      Destinations for Life come to an ending sometimes early and also of time's late. One does not have to believe in an afterlife to become reborn back into the kingdom domains of God. Death marks the end of one life and bears the beginning of a new life whether one now believes it or not. With no memories of this life, one is born back into God's kingdom domain free from this life's encroachments.

      May 9, 2013 at 5:29 pm |
    • derp
      June 6, 2013 at 8:12 pm |
  17. Akira

    Did they look long and hard to find the must unflattering picture of Mr. Wilson they could find?

    May 9, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
  18. Not a GOPer and nor do I play one on TV

    A slow week on the Belief Blog.

    It's not entirely a bad thing.

    May 9, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Give it time they're still seeking out the religious angle on the Cleveland case and the Arias case-great loving christian that she is after all. 🙂

      May 9, 2013 at 4:02 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      I feel sorry for Jake Tapper and Moni Basu, who probably had to suffer in making this travesty. Whip marks, leg iron scars, it's all good, right?
      CNN must be a terrible place these days. Atlanta sux also. Georgia is not a good place to live or work.
      Those poor kids.

      May 9, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
    • William Demuth

      It actually occurred to me they might be trying to tamp down the flames

      For the first time in my life I think a REAL shooting war amongst the cults might be in the offing

      The Middle East is teetering as I type, and the US tolerance for war is low.

      If somebody scores a significant hit against Israel, all bets are off and I am heading to an undisclosed underground bunker

      May 9, 2013 at 4:20 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      Don't be silly, WD. Most of the shootin will be in the Middle East. They can't shoot a rubber band over here, much less a bomb.

      May 9, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Jimmy

      Sarin gas released in large amounts will be one hell of a school science project

      May 9, 2013 at 4:32 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      TruthPrevails, Jodi Arias is a wolf in sheep's clothing, predator, preying on her deceased husband, and the jury nailed her.

      May 9, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
    • Akira

      Arias was not married to the man she murdered.

      May 9, 2013 at 7:39 pm |
  19. meifumado

    Ok, we asked for a new story and got crap.

    This guy is mentally unstable if you ask me, flipping from myth to myth.

    May 9, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
    • Nathan

      mentally unstable, flipping from myth to myth? You sure have a lot of judgement considering you must not know anything about him. Rainn Wilson is constantly helping humanitarian organizations and is the creator of SoulPancake which is a powerful site that has done far more good than you apparently realize. And the Baha'i Faith is a beautiful faith.

      May 9, 2013 at 5:48 pm |
    • meifumado

      @ Nathan
      He is delusional and week minded, but that does not mean he is not a good or bad person.
      I don't need to know any more about him ,his silly beliefs in one god then others proves my point.
      You use the word faith, You do know the definition of the word ya? Religious faith is the belief in something without any proof.
      Delusional people believe in things without proof.

      May 10, 2013 at 3:50 pm |
  20. Brighton

    Is that the face of Baha'i faith? Scary!

    May 9, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
    • Secular humanist

      These people imprisoned wrongly deserve to be freed, look like Iran has a problem with secular humanists like people of the Bahai faith.

      May 9, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Secular, I'm all for better treatment of the Bahai in Iran, but the fact remains they are still only somewhat more moderate in their religiously founded anti-gay beliefs. They like to come off as a bastion of tolerance and modernity, but corner anyone on this topic and you'll see them squirm.

      May 9, 2013 at 4:02 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      Any non-Muslim who insists on living in Iran is too stupid for words. How can anyone support their ridiculous stupidity?

      May 9, 2013 at 4:23 pm |
    • Not a GOPer and nor do I play one on TV

      The founder of the Bahá'í faith was born in Tehran. It's not surprising there would be adherents in Iran.

      May 9, 2013 at 4:36 pm |
    • Hepcat

      Bahais are not secular humanists. They are religious idiots. As such, they have no credibility on secular or humanist issues because they are effectively trying to believe ALL the worlds religions AT THE SAME TIME. They are so fucking stupid it just boggles the mind. They are like Buddhists with mental diarrhea. Just sick.

      May 10, 2013 at 2:41 am |
    • Nez

      Hepcat,

      Yes, Baha'is believe that there is ONE God and that he send many different manifestations throughout history, but this isn't a new idea. Christians believe in both Jewish prophets and Christian prophets. Muslims believe in Jewish and Christian prophets but also believe in Muhammad.

      Its the same way that as a child grows up, he learns new things with each grade. Knowledge is one, but the things he learns becomes more profound as he grows up. When your in middle school you learn that there is such thing as negative numbers, and a concept of infinite. That doesn't mean that the rules of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division are false. You just have a greater understanding of math, incorporating everything you've learned into one greater truth. Imagine if in 1st grade, your math teacher tried to teach you all of math at once. You wouldn't have the capacity to understand calculus. In the same way, humanities capacity is growing and as such, new manifestations are coming giving us a greater understanding of these spiritual truths. If you look at most religions, there is a fundamental truth that holds true throughout time. Some social teachings change, but the fundamental spiritual teachings are the same.

      May 16, 2013 at 11:25 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.