Sunday, November 02, 2008


I've been meditating on the following passage this week, and found it amazingly appropriate to the juncture we find ourselves at as a country (and planet). So I thought I'd offer it to you for your contemplation as well.

"Difference of capacity in individuals is fundamental to human existence. It is not possible for all to be alike, for all to be equal. Yet human affairs, in their entirety, should be governed by the principle of justice.

Justice is not limited; it is a universal quality. It must operate at all levels of society. Justice must be sacred, and the rights of all people must be guarded. The laws of society must be formulated and enforced in such a way that it is not possible for a few to amass wealth and for others to be destitute. Among the teachings of Bahá'u'lláh is the elimination of the extremes of wealth and poverty.

Each member of society should enjoy the benefits of civilization, because every individual is a member of the body of humanity. If one member of this body is in anguish or distress, all the other members must necessarily suffer. How can one member be afflicted and the others be at ease? Yet today because of the lack of harmonious relations, some members of society are satisfied, living in the utmost comfort and luxury, while others are in want of food and shelter. Today's society lacks the necessary reciprocity and symmetry; it is not well arranged. Laws and principles are needed that will ensure the well-being and happiness of all the members of the human family.

Justice is established on the pillars of reward and punishment. People are motivated to be just by the hope for reward and the fear of punishment. These two sentiments are necessary if oppression is to be prevented. The legislators and administrators of the laws must be aware of the spiritual consequences of their decisions. When an official knows that he will be held responsible for his actions beyond this earthly life, he will be inspired to act with justice. The ruler who knows his judgments will be weighed in the balance of Divine Justice will surely avoid oppression."
excerpted from Arising to Serve, written by the Ruhi Foundation in 1987

1 comment:

Mary Alice said...

I had never read that....but it goes along with some thoughts I've had this week. Thanks for posting that.