Original sin. Hell. Satan. From a Bahá’í perspective, the concept of original sin and any doctrines built up around it are, in themselves, perverse; hell is not a physical place; Satan does not exist.
God’s creation is, in essence, good. Man, endowed with a rational soul, is responsible for his own spiritual progress: he can strive to mirror God’s attributes and thereby grow closer to Him–a heavenly condition–or he can choose to abase himself and thereby maintain a separation from Him–a hellish condition. Satan is symbolic of man’s lower nature, which dominates when the development of the soul is largely ignored.
For a more extensive introduction to the subject of understanding the relationship between good and evil, refer to the topic "On Good and Evil." The topic touches on physical desires, spiritual needs, suffering as an element of the development of the soul, evil as the absence of good, impediments to spiritual progress, salvation, the root of unhappiness, and the key to happiness. It includes many selections from the Bahá’í Writings, including one by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá—son of the founder of the Bahá’í Faith, Bahá’u’lláh—that describes the Bahá’í concept of the relationship between good and evil in man.
For independent study of the Bahá’í Writings on the subject of struggles and trials as they relate to spiritual growth, "‘Abdu’l-Bahá on Suffering and Tests" provides a collection of quotes as a starting point. And, lest attachment to the concept of original sin exist or references to hell and Satan be taken literally, the topic "The Independent Investigation of Truth" underlines the importance of distinguishing truth from falsehood.
For collaborative study of these and other subjects, please call the Bahá’ís of Comox (250.702.3041).