Time to put on our thinking caps. Time to search for values and principles that the whole of humanity can embrace. Time to work tirelessly so, at least, our great-grandchildren can have some measure of peace and tranquillity.
Sure, you could avoid thinking hard about these issues but, in my experience, if things weren’t going well and I avoided the effort of critical thought, things got immeasurably worse.
Also, this quote from the last post should lend tremendous power to the effort of thought leading to action:
“The great peace long envisioned by the peoples and nations of the world is well within our grasp.”
In the last post, we looked at some of the immensely critical issues testing the effectiveness of the United Nations—the continuing subjugation of women and girls, neglect of cultural and religious minorities, unbridled nationalism, massive refugee flows, narrow economic agendas exalting material prosperity, and the growing importance of the role of religion in discussions of global crises.
How in the world can all these things be resolved in time to avoid a global meltdown?
There is no longer any rational doubt about what can provide the power to make all the changes we must make—The Principle of Oneness—the awareness that we are All in the same boat and we must include All in the bailing out process…
If you think you don’t have to be involved or that other people have the job of resolving these issues, you’re ignoring one of the most basic laws of the universe: Everything Is Interconnected.
There are certain important areas of change the United Nations is involved in and some they need to bring to greater urgency in their agendas.
The following points of focus come from the Study Guide to the Bahá’í International Community’s 2005 statement to the UN.
“…at what point is it morally legitimate and necessary for the international community to intervene in the affairs of sovereign states? In 2001, in response to this question, the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty defined
sovereignty not only as an inviolable right (as it had been previously understood) but as a ‘responsibility to protect (its citizens).’ In a historic move during the 60th Session of the United Nations General Assembly member states, after much debate, endorsed this new understanding of sovereignty.”
“For many years, the level of ‘development’ of a nation was assessed primarily by its Gross National Product (GNP), its GNP per capita and other commodity-based indicators. In 1990, under the leadership of Mahbub ul Haq (former minister of finance of Pakistan) and Amartya Sen (Nobel prize winning economist from India) —the UN released its first annual Human Development Report stating that ‘people are the real wealth of a nation.’” Read the report.
“Several factors have contributed to the near complete rejection of religion in concepts of international relations.”
“In [David Held’s] book, Democracy and the Global Order, he states that the ‘future has to be conceived in cosmopolitan terms’ which include a set of global institutions shaped by democratic law and which act as a ‘government’ by implementing and enforcing that law. Citing philosopher Immanuel Kant, Held states that ‘cosmopolitan law’ is not a utopian way of thinking about law, but rather a ‘necessary complement’ to the existing code of national and international law and a ‘means to transform the latter into the public law of humanity’.”
Former UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, introduced a major report that “took a comprehensive approach – stressing the interdependence of development, freedom, and peace and emphasizing human solidarity as the basis for effective and sustainable solutions to global challenges.”
“As the number of countries with significant minority populations grows, states face the challenge of devising policies to effectively govern increasingly diverse ethnic, religious, and linguistic populations.” Read the report, Cultural Liberty in Today’s Diverse World.
This is only a representative offering of the super-critical issues facing not only the United Nations but each of us as World Citizens. Will we, through lack of initiative and action, let our world implode on itself?
“It is my hope that this standard of the oneness of the world of humanity may be upraised with the utmost solidity so that the Orient and Occident may become perfectly reconciled and attain complete intercommunication, the hearts of the East and West become united and attracted, real union become unveiled, the light of guidance shine, divine effulgences be seen day by day so that the world of humanity may find complete tranquillity, the eternal happiness of man become evident and the hearts of the people of the world be as mirrors in which the rays of the Sun of Reality may be reflected. Consequently, it is my request that you should strive so that the light of reality may shine and the everlasting felicity of the world of man become apparent.”
‘Abdu’l-Bahá, The Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 12