Posted by Bret (18.104.22.168) on May 15, 2002 at 12:46:08:
In Reply to: Prayer for America posted by Larry on May 13, 2002 at 13:07:25:
My Dear Friend,
It seems to me that such disapproval is derived from your friend's sense of history. Since most of the world is guided by the post-modern view, which basically allows any individual or group to project any relevance they see fit to history, there is much cause for confusion and division. Replacing these conflicting views is the Baha'i view of history, which suggests that history is about the evolution of the human species as a whole in relation to their divine nature as it pertains to a succession of progressive revelations from God. In this view, all that has taken place has one purpose and the suffering of every age is not the result of a specific occurance here or there, but of the rejection of God's Manifestation in each dispensation.
Now, as to the point at hand, your friend seems to be attached to the sufferings that many people have endured in this country's growth. Perhaps he/she is focused on one instance and clings to it as a basis for all others, or perhaps it's several incidents. It might even be a general feeling that this country's history is just one big succession of wrong doing. I would not dispute these things. The Guardian himself writes in The Advent of Divine Justice that this country's history is filled with racism, moral laxity and political corruption. What I would say though is that these are not indicative of the standards established by the Constitution of the United States.
The Constitution was created with the foresight to make it ammendable to fit the needs of the evolution of law and morality in order that it might grow in its applicability to include more and more people. I believe, therefore, that 'Abdu'l-Baha's words are a reference to this, but your friend sees them as a contradiction to what he/she is attached to.
To articulate this in order that your friend might see things a little differently I might point out a few things. First, the aforementioned aspect of the Constitution. Second, the fact that the U.S. is a Republic in the true sense of the definition. That is it is a democracy and it is a representative government. This point is important in pointing out why the U.S. is just because if it were just a democracy the majority would have to rule on everything and people's lives would be constantly political and not truely free. If it were a strict representative government then the opportunity for supremecy of one group over another would be too easily justified. The fact that it is both keeps one in balance with the other and gives liberty and justice to all who claim it. True this has not always been so, but the Constitution did change and out of the pain that people endured in the process new moral integrety was cemented into the fabric of the Constitution making it even stronger. Third, the fact that the government has three branches makes it just because power is equally checked and balanced, so that creation of law, execution of justice and administration on foreign and domestic policies all work in cohesion with one another. Fouth, but not finally, I might point out that, although there are still many problems in this country and in the world, the United States of America is still the most free country in the whole world and by free I mean true freedom as distinguished from liberty. Liberty is animal freedom, or the freedom to carry out more choices on the physical plain, but true freedom is spiritual liberty, or the ability to transcend animal conditions to achieve harmony with principles, virtues and qualities.
I once heard Dr. Robert Henderson, Secretary Genreal of the NSA of the US speak on this matter and what he said was revolutionary. He said that the whole reason that Columbus made it to the New World and that Europens began comming to North America after that was to create the United States of America. He showed us how the creation of the US was an irresistable force of history. It had to happen for the sole purpose of allowing it's citizens the freedom to carry the Message of Baha'u'llah to all nations. There are a couple of implications here. One is direct in that the Baha'is of the United States, besides the community of our birth Iran, is the most distinguished of all throughout the world for many reasons. The other is that the United States of America is the national model from which a world federation of nations will be built and refined.
There has always been one cause of all of the suffering in the world: rejection of God's Manifestations, but in this day God has revealed His explicit Covenant with humanity and His Kingdom has come.
These are just my opinions on the matter though and I hope it is clear where facts are used it is only to substantiate my own commentary, so this is not official in any way, but I believe it might help you to find a solution. Peace be with you.
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