Re: 'Abdu'l-Baha on Africans and Violence

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Posted by Sam on April 22, 2102 at 11:10:19:

In Reply to: Re: 'Abdu'l-Baha on Africans and Violence posted by Living-Tribunal on July 13, 2101 at 15:48:58:


The Master doesn't say that white people were not violent or that black people were more violent than white. Nor does He blame the Africans for being "savage". Elsewhere He says the European races have not advanced to higher spiritual planes. Here He is talking mostly to white Europeans. Is He going to insult them to their face? No, we lift the veil gradually. Europeans are spiritually retarded, but telling them the hard facts would do little to elevate their thinking, rather it would tend to put them on the defensive. Meanwhile His illustration in regard to the African peoples, in the climate of those days when political correctness was not a major issue, was apt. It does not hurt the African peoples to indicate, indirectly, their need to be educated. Rather through His inspiration many pioneers were moved to arise to teach the Faith in Africa and thereby assist them to relase them from deprivation.

It is certainly true that lack of education renders a person savage, for we were created to know, and therefore to be graced with knowledge. The Master was not saying that Africans are innately savage but that the condition of Africa, from a spiritual vantage point, was that is was suffering throgh lack of education. He was simply illustrating a point, not elaborating a general principle.

He praises Forel because of the Baha'i principle that if a person has ten bad qualities and one good we praise the one good and forget the bad. One has to see that, unlike ourselves, the Master was the embodiment of every human virtue, and overlooking the sins of others is a key virtue. Elsewhere in His writings He says that brain size does nto determine intellignce, so clearly He does not uphold Forel's viewpoint in any way, though it would, again, insult Forel for Him to tell Him this so directly, and nothing would be achieved thereby.

We cannot isolate one of the statements of the Master from the rest. Elsewhere in His writings He says that <>-- `Abdu'l-Bahá, The Promulgation of Universal Peace

And thus He only raises the question of human savagery through lack of education in certain parts of the world to illustrate the importance of education for all. Not that His illustration is to be taken too literally.


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