Noah Goodbaum - Toronto, Canada
CHANGE WAS AT HAND
“It was first discovered that I had bipolar disorder when I was having delusions. I had delusions that there was a God and that He would counsel believers of every stripe as well as irreligious folk, to take counsel in, to read, and to consider sacred and authoritative the scriptures of all religions. We were supposed to be reading the Tripiṭaka [discourses of the Buddha], we were supposed to be reading the Bhagavad Gita, the Bible, the Qur’an, the Torah, the Talmud, etc. I had always wondered about that because I didn’t at the time consider it to have been a vision from God; it sounded too much like what I wanted. It sounded too much like something that I would like to have been true. And so I sort of assumed it couldn’t be. But here was Bahá’u’lláh [founder of the Bahá’í faith], proclaiming that essentially it was. And that Sam Cooke’s change, John Lennon’s change was at hand. That, you know, it was possible to reconcile the children of men and build heaven on Earth, and being the universalist who believes forthrightly and devoutly in, you know, in the sacredness of human beings. And the capacity of every human being on the level of the soul to develop wonderful qualities and to be wonderful, to become wonderful, this sort of appealed to me. Because, as Bahá’u’lláh says, ‘look, it’s possible,’ and, ‘we can win this.’ This benighted dunya, this fallen world, is not necessarily the world which will always be. We can build a society which universalizes an understanding of the Golden Rule and of universal brotherhood, love, compassion….”
Noah Goodbaum is one of the most remarkable human beings I have ever met…and I met him in Toronto, Canada. Noah makes rap music under the name The Mighty Rhino. He is a local celebrity and gifted writer of lyrics and creator of beats. Noah was born with cerebral palsy, has bipolar disorder, Aspergerʼs syndrome and obsessive-compulsive disorder. “My little eccentricity collection,” he says. But this doesn’t tell half of his story.
Noah was raised a Reconstructionist Jew but his soul came alive when he got exposed to the Baháʼí faith. Today, Noah devotes his time to making his music and being the big-hearted man he is. He has released three full-length albums: “He Whom The Beat Sets Free Is Free Indeed,” “We Will No Longer Retreat Into Darkness,” and, “A Joy Which Nothing Can Erase.” I was lucky to participate in his recording of a music video in Toronto’s Kensington Market where we marched down the street following Noah as he rapped, “Everybody falls down sometimes, don’t you be afraid of the sunshine, yes you can and will get on your feet. STAY UP….”
Through Noah I have learned again that God is the sum total of our infinite capacity for loving ourselves and each other. I just love Noah Goodbaum, The Mighty Rhino, and everything he represents. Thank you, Noah.