In spite of the corporate emphasis of the administrative Baha'i community, I've always felt that the Writings of Baha'u'llah were incredibly supportive -- indeed, they insist upon -- the individual's spiritual quest. I've found that this aspect of my Baha'i life has become even more important since I became unenrolled -- there are no assembly meetings, or plans, or any of that. There's just Baha'u'llah and me.
There are times I think being an unenrolled Baha'i is a matter of temperament. Some people are naturally introverted, others extroverted -- and they really don't understand each other too well. The extrovert sees the introvert "doing nothing", not knowing that the mind and the internal world can be very busy indeed. The introvert finds the rush of external activity a burden, and one that is often devoid of meaning. That doesn't make either way "right"; it's just a difference. For some, it would be very difficult to follow a spiritual path without having support, and face-to-face community. For others, tranquility and solitude are necessary to hear the still, small voice of God. If you can relate to the sayings "The kingdom of heaven is within you" and "Hell is other people", then being a Baha'i on your own probably doesn't seem like such a bad thing.
Baha'u'llah makes room for us. He absolutely forbids taqlid -- the blind following of clerical authority -- and exhorts us to "see with your own eyes". The Muslim congregational prayer is replaced by the individual choice of three different prayers, and such a light worship requirement that it is easy for the individual to create what works for him/her. Again and again, he exhorts us to "ponder and reflect", turning us in on our own hearts and minds.
In my evening devotions tonight, I just happened to come upon this: It is incumbent on one who journeys unto God and who emigrates for his sake to sever himself from all who are in the heavens and on earth, and to restrain his sould from all save him.[Gems of the Mysteries, Juan Cole translation] This, of course, is a theme that Baha'u'llah returns to again and again. And while may be possible to find detachment in the whirlwind of social affairs, I have a hard time seeing how.
One of my favorite verses about the power of individual contemplation is this: My friends, you are the wellsprings of my own discourse. In every spring, a droplet from the heavenly stream of divine meaning wells up. With the hand of certainty, cleanse these springs of the pollution of unfounded judgments and illusions. In this way, might you yourselves give convincing and unassailable answers to the sorts of questions that have been posed. In this greatest of dispensations, all must appear with branches of knowledge and sayings of wisdom.[Tablet of the Son, Juan Cole translation]
So, we are the wellsprings of His discourse -- we just have to work on cleansing the spring. And we have to do that ourselves.