“We offer a tax for war instead of a plan for peace!”

Just came across this ageless speech of Sir Martin Luther King today which i find perfect for the Critical Imaginary – a”>critical situations world is facing nowadays. How ‘Ageless? It addresses three moral illnesses that you can relate to no matter whichever time you are from.

  1. Racism    2. Excessive Materialism     3. Militarism

Can i also call it placeless ? Sadly , yes.

” We have come here because we share a common concern for the moral health of our nation. We have come because our eyes have seen through the superficial glory and glitter of our society and observe the coming of judgment like the prophet of old…

No one can overlook the wonders that science has wrought for our lives, the automobile cannot abdicate in favor of the horse and buggy or the train in favor of the stagecoach or a tractor in favor of the hand plow or the scientific method in favor of ignorance and superstition but our moral lag must be redeemed when scientific power outruns moral power we end up with guided missiles and misguided men!

There is always more misery among the lower classes than there is humanity in the higher classes!

..we place insatiable military demands above their most critical needs..

Men of reason should no longer debate the merits of war or means of financing war; they should end the war and restore sanity and humanity…

So let us stand in this convention knowing that on some positions how it has asked the question ‘is it safe’, Expediency asks the question ‘is it politic’, vanity asks the question ‘is it popular’ but the conscience asks the question ‘is it right‘ !

On some positions it is necessary for the moral individual to take a stand that is neither safe nor politic nor popular but he must do it because it is right!

True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar, it understands that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring!

A nation that continues to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death! “

Here is the full historic speech of Martin Luther King on new politics.

What is born will die for sure.. hence the question is not whether we will live or die, the question is how we live and how we die.

Critical

Fast and Breakfasting Festival

Fasting and Breakfasting is a practice we find in almost all faith.

The most recent ‘Breakfasting Festival’ we witnessed in many parts of the word is widely known as ‘Eid-al-Fitr’. The day is marked on the 1st day of Shawaal, after a month long Sawm(Fasting) of Ramadan.

What is Eid?     According to dictionaries the meaning of the Arabic word ‘Eid’ is ‘Festival’. The word ‘Eid’ has come from the word ‘awdat’  which means ‘to turn’, ‘to recur’, ‘to come again’ etc.

There are 2 Eid in Muslim tradition: Eid-al-Fitr  and  Eid-al-Adha. The meaning of ‘Fitr’ is ‘Breakfasted’ and ‘Adha’ means ‘Sacrifice’.

Practice of Eid-al-Fitr:  The package of this Eid consists of ‘Fasting and Breakfasting’. Therefore I need to understand first what is ‘Fasting’.

From scriptural  instruction what I understood is it’s about training a person to live a disciplined life by taking control over own nafs (self/ego). In the 1 month( or 40 days or any certain period of time) training one has to use every organ of them in God’s prescribed way. Such as-

  • Be in Remembrance of God
  • Speak truth and nicely
  • Abstain from gossip, slandering and backbiting
  • Abstain from stealing, hurting, adultery
  • Treat humans and other creations with love and compassion
  • Give to the needy (without desiring any return from them)
  • Abstain from eating and drinking only from dawn to dusk, eat in between sundown and dawn (or a variation of controlled eating)  Etc.
  • In short – Do good, See good, Think good, Eat good, and Stay Good. 🙂

My observation of the holy Scriptures tells me that even during the training period except for the ‘Eating and drinking’ there is no mention of resuming/practicing the behaviors like telling lies, speaking in not humble manner, gossiping, backbiting, slandering, hurting people, stealing, and so on right after the evening prayer. My question was then- why do we need to abstain from eating for that certain time? And what are we supposed to accomplish with this act? Many people say, ‘God will bestow upon you many sawab/rewards in return’. From the scriptures and spiritual teachers what I’ve learned says: that practice leads us towards getting control over our eating so that we eat moderately, just as much needed to stay healthy and when we have extra food we can give to the ones who need. The purpose is also to get control over greed.We are prescribed to apply that training the rest of our life. And what about the spiritual practice? 🙂 Aren’t we prescribed to maintain the healthy behavioral, moral and spiritual practice for the rest of our life as well?

This 1 month training is for bringing a balanced Life, by getting the body well tuned with the Soul. See Most of the practices in fasting regards to the spiritual practices with the body and mind. A body without connection to Soul is nothing but dead corpse. No?

God’s design is so Neat and Balanced! Let’s make a self-inquiry at which part of practice are we putting much stress on now-a-days. Body, Soul, or both?

Now, the Festival Day :)- The Festival of Breakfasting. What might it mean? Is it about Breaking all the virtues we learned? Or it might be about celebrating the successful completion of a Great Training on the path of God? So it can be marked as the ‘Beginning’ of a New Life after Training. After all what is a training for! Obviously to develop or upgrade our knowledge or skills to apply in our works and any area of life.

So..why should we observe the ‘Fast’ every year? Why this recurring Training? So that we can keep check on ourselves since we usually tend to slip, more or less.                                It reminds me of the first-aid training at Red-Crescent Society. Every trainee needs to take the training once in every 2 years (if they are interested to serve).

Fasting, Breakfasting Festival and lifelong activities which is prescribed by God. What are some rewards or Purposes for all these?- ‘Paradise! A Place where you will be given what you want’.

So much only for ‘what we want’! Such powerful desire that keeps us driven. What is it that we want? Umm.. there might be many many varieties of answer to this as there are many people on earth.                                                                    But which one is most preferable?According to the holy scriptures of God The Most Desirable in fact the Only Desirable in every world is ‘God’ :).

 

N.B. It would be really interesting to see an assembly of verses on the above topics from different scriptures.Here are some from the verses that I came across while studying-

                                                                         Holy Bible

Joel 2:12   Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:

Mathew 6: 16 “When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Mark 2:18 Now John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting. Some people came and asked Jesus, “How is it that John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees are fasting, but yours are not?”

19 Jesus answered, “How can the guests of the bridegroom fast while he is with them? They cannot, so long as they have him with them. 20 But the time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them, and on that day they will fast.

                                                              Srimad  Bhagavad Geeta

 6:15 Thus always keeping the mind balanced, the Yogi, with his mind controlled, attains the Peace abiding in Me, which culminates in nirvana.

6:17 To him who is moderate in eating and recreation, who is moderate in his exertions of actions, who is moderate in sleep and wakefulness, to him accrues Yoga which is destructive of sorrows.

6:6 The self is the friend of himself who has conquered himself by the self. But to him who has not conquered himself, his own self stands in the position of an enemy like the (external) foe.

8:6 Of whatever being thinking at the end a man leaves the body, to him alone,  O son of Kunti, he goes because of his constant thought of that being. 7 Therefore at all times, meditate on Me and fight; with mind and intellect fixed on Me you shall come to Me alone, no doubt.

8:15 Having attained Me, these Mahatmas (great souls) do not again take birth, which is the abode of pain and is not eternal, they having reached the Supreme Goal.

                                                                 Al Quran

2:183  O you who believe! fasting is prescribed for you, as it was prescribed for those before you, so that you may guard (against evil).

2:184 (Fast) a certain number of days; and (for) him who is sick among you, or on a journey, (the same) number of other days; and for those who can afford it there is a ransom: the feeding of a man in need – but whoso doeth good of his own accord, it is better for him: and that ye fast is better for you if ye did but know –

33:35 Surely the men who submit and the women who submit, and the believing men and the believing women, and the obeying men and the obeying women, and the truthful men and the truthful women, and the patient men and the patient women and the humble men and the humble women, and the almsgiving men and the almsgiving women, and the fasting men and the fasting women, and the men who guard their private parts and the women who guard, and the men who remember Allah much and the women who remember– Allah has prepared for them forgiveness and a mighty reward.

More on fasting from Quran.

 

 

The World’s Central Conflict, a Study of Faith, Philosophy, and Kingship

Original post by : Unueco Partio

Conclusion The central theme of all the world’s conflict is the world’s desire to have a just King with divine qualities, yet our rejection of the very idea such a King could even exist…

The very revolutions Voltaire and Franklin helped lead will be fruitless. As they sought to remove religion from government, they had no idea humanity, in its pursuit of happiness, would slowly destroy the revolutions they created. As our environment degrades, as our care for our neighbors decrease, as our civic engagement is replaced by 24 hours of entertainment, and as we replace the divine with ourselves, we are losing our liberties. We are losing the ability to work and live a decent livelihood, we are losing our ability to drink clean water, breathe clean air, to create, and most importantly, rely on each other for support. Our families are suffering from increased dysfunction, our churches, mosques, temples, and synagogues are no longer pillars of virtue but instead symbols of our own hypocrisy. Our local governments and echelons above are ruled by money and profit, not by the pursuit of individual liberty for all nor the mutual shared benefit of all. This is true throughout the world, from the USA, Haiti, the Congo, Greece, Russia, China, India, and everywhere in between. The entire world has succumbed to these effects.

We need to change. Let’s talk about what this change can look like.

For a great insight into the very important topic for this Present Time, for Justice and for the well being of all  read the full post.

Source: The World’s Central Conflict, a Study of Faith, Philosophy, and Kingship

Borders!

Year 2002. My attention was first brought to the borders by a friend- how it was separating lands and humans. It took me years to realize those words to a deeper level though.

When I seriously started to think about the borders and their effects i was amazed. Some set of woven metal wires, looks so simple but pierces hearts, society, country, whole human nation!

Powers of Borders:

1. It changes your identity

2. Changes your character

3. Changes your social status

4. Changes your philosophy

5. It is brought by War and Brings potential future war ( If anyone from other side lays even an eye on the land)

6. It increases even few steps distance into bigger distance..few minutes distance into few month’s distance

7. Decreases human rights and eventually leads the human race to not even recognize animal rights

And more..

I humbly gave thought behind the idea of borders. In childhood i learned that we need to set fences around our crop fields or orchards to protect from wild animals. Well when i first visited village i don’t remember seeing any fence around the crop fields though. Anyway.. i also tried to think from the perspective of protecting a land from potential criminals! But then my heart asked- Hmm, so tell me what about the home grown criminals? And if you think you got an effective Government who is successful at controlling the crimes within border then does that wisdom flee away as soon as the borders are lifted? I would admit this one question convinced me to never feel supportive about borders between lands. I believe without those borders this world would experience more spread developments.

Look at the irony- you can not stop an animal from migrating to another lands with those borders..the migratory birds are one big example:). Who do we consider as the wild animals then? We were taught to respect our border guards as they are working days and nights only to protect the borders (to protect the country). I am not saying there should not be any guards to protect laws and safeguard the citizens. But can’t that purpose be served by having those guards working the way they would do for protecting people from internal criminals? Borders brought security but increased insecurity feeling. Increased ethnicity clashes. Increased nationality crisis, Increased refugees, Increased Sighs…

I am hopeful about humanity. People today through many incidents, soft or harsh, are discovering and realizing that all humans are but one nation. On this note i would like to share a holy quote –

The Great Being saith: Blessed and happy is he that ariseth to promote the best interests of the peoples and kindreds of the earth. In another passage He hath proclaimed: It is not for him to pride himself who loveth his own country, but rather for him who loveth the whole world. The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens.

~ Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah

Hopefully we will bring our faith and realization into action and the borders will be lifted. I do understand there might be some thoughts -1. i like this idea but who will accept it?

2. So many borders all over the world and so many minds. It won’t be easy!

3. It will take too much time and we won’t probably even live to see that day!

I don’t know which country will come forward or which person will … but consider asking some questions to thyself- do i believe in it in the first place? Do i consider my neighbor country people as one nation no matter how low or how high their status might be? Do i let my faith travel beyond borders? We may or may not live to see that united nation in action but God sure has gifted us with this Present to take initiative towards that reality. If we sow a seed of a plant it will grow with proper care even if we don’t live until it starts bearing fruits. That really doesn’t make us looser nor any less significant. It may not be easy but it is not impossible :). I would like to share an encouraging quote again-

That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicateth himself to the service of the entire human race. ~Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah

 

Border , Realize

One Day of Peace, 364 Days for War — Unueco Partio

I love the idea behind the International Day of Peace. Here is one day, out of the many different observances we have created, to promote peace itself. Why does peace need a specific day? Because the other 364 days are for war. Fortunately, there are some progresses towards peace. The Western Hemisphere is officially conflict […]

via One Day of Peace, 364 Days for War — Unueco Partio

 

 

Jump
Passionate

A New Book for any place anytime

I haven’t read ‘The Divine Comedy’ of Dante, nor did I get a chance to read any  literary work of Petrarch (founder of Humanism) or Boccaccio. The three famous fountains of European Renaissance. What I learned about them is through their significant works they extended the line of Humanity which was somehow on the verge of its loss during that time in and around Europe.

Reading the book “Unueco Partio: Creating a Single World Currency” gave me a feeling this is one of the books for this Present Time to extend the line of Humanity once again.

From the name of the book one might think it is all about Economics but reading it I discovered its core passion towards world humanity and its Unity. What I love about this book is it’s acknowledgement of the Creator of Humanity and that how circling around Him humankind can discover its Greater unity and a Better world of equality:) .

 

 

I am pleased to announce the release of the first Unueco Partio book. Book Description Using principles from the world’s faiths and sciences, values shared by individuals and families, and the desire to constantly innovate and improve, Unueco Partio makes the argument for creating a single world currency. To support this, a framework of ideas […]

via Unueco Partio: Creating a Single World Currency — Unueco Partio

Living Words

Today when i saw the word ‘expert’ the person who first came to my mind is ‘Jesus’. The reason might be I was thinking of Him before i read that word.

What was he expert at? At Loving, being compassionate, wise, forgiving, understanding… at being an Ideal human, at being an ideal delegate of God! What was the driving force behind his expertise? I see ‘Love’. Actually now that I am saying he was expert my heart is saying -nah! those virtues are actually beyond the feel of the word expertise or skills. He was more than that. If i say he practiced ‘Love’ then it feels less softer than ‘Love’. But yeah Love itself got revealed through him. He let Love flow through..To the extent that there remained no barrier between Him and Love. Therefore whomever received him received Love. He let forgiveness flow within to the extent that there remained no barrier between him and Forgiveness. Thus whomever received him received Forgiveness.

🙂 He not only taught to love ,he became love. He lived the words he spoke. He himself was living words. Living Holy Book. He and all whom God sent as His Messenger. All of them are the Living Words of God.

 

Expert

Discover connections

IMG_20160610_130316

I believe one picture may evoke many different thoughts or emotions in different persons. When I was producing this art work I had some thoughts and some realizations. Even i sometimes get a different feelings when I look at these works later. Does it happen to you too?

I would like you to share whatever thoughts or feelings evoked inside you as you are seeing this art work. I really would like to discover our interconnected thoughts and their flow.

Thanks 🙂
Clouds
Tourist Water

Poverty

Poverty has been playing a dangerous role behind rising crimes and accepting crimes for a long time. The crimes ranges from petty stealing to even killing the mass people.

I would say one of the many reasons behind ‘rising extremist groups’ is ‘poverty’.  Extremist or Opportunist Oppressive leaders have been using this as a tool to lure the poor ones, from children to adults, to commit a crime for their purpose in exchange of money. During the strikes they would give money to some poor who may not even have any direct connection to any political party and ask them to go burn down vehicles, cut down the trees to block roads, bang someone’s head, throw cocktails or such explosives etc. They would target needy people even from middle class or seemingly rich family who probably got into some crisis and are needing urgent help. They would give them money as loan or even free. And bind them in a circle of liability ,gratitude as a price for the taken help. What do they want in return? They want them as their slave now to perform all the tasks they need to get done for establishing fear among the people and establish ‘Power’ over others. I would admit ‘greed’ also plays a lead key in this scenario.

But there are genuine poverty too. There are people whose even very basic needs are not met. There are people who get education and have good skills too but then they face crisis of work. Either because they don’t have a higher pricey degree or because they don’t have enough money to give as a bribe, or because they don’t have early work experience (Man, where do i get experience from if you don’t give me a job in the first place? :p ) or because they don’t look smart enough etc. etc. There are also many people with many good skills even if they don’t necessarily have higher degrees. But how often are they considered to be hired? Not very often. Especially in a poor country job with a good salary for such people is almost like water in the middle of desert and in  a developing country you will have to keep good watch. Farming, Carpentry, Plumbing, Cleaning etc. are pretty significant works but yet if you look from the perspective of those countries you will see how even a respectful work looses its appeal due to the money you earn against it. Imagine a farmer in south Asia. Rice is a very popular agricultural product in those countries. But how much does a farmer earn. Let alone money a farmer doesn’t even get a respectful look at them often. When someone from city goes to visit villages and they smile at a farmer i wonder how often do they feel like that man is equal even to the man who might be a boss in his office. Can we imagine if all the farmers, all the road cleaners, all those workers whose work looks low to us stopped working in those sectors who would do those chores? Either the rich ones or since they r not skilled at those works may b we all go starving, enjoy garbage all around etc.

Anyway.. So when people receives neither just portion against their labor nor even respect they eventually get frustrated. And these frustrations sometimes lead to small crimes to potential big crimes. Obviously there are strong people too who wouldn’t fall in the traps of crime to get money. But their strength doesn’t make them unworthy of getting proper price for their works!

To what extent can a family’s poverty go that even a mother takes drastic step to sell her daughter/s. To which extent poverty has reached that mans are falling in the traps of human trafficking. Sometimes some people would knowingly sell themselves to crime just because the hunger for food, the need of some clothes to cover the body, the need of a roof over head is pretty heavy.

Where has this poverty come from? Why there are people going without foods day after day when in their neighborhood many are sleeping on pricey beds, eating extra pricey foods or more foods than needed or even more foods than they can handle and who even own more than one car. How did all this happen. Why ,how and from where did we start the trend of deciding which work would get more salary and which would get low to lower? Do you think our present system got a Just distribution of economy among all the people on earth?

I believe in law enforcement to prevent crimes. But laws can’t be enough when people are starving unjustly or are being treated with discrimination. And above all I also feel the need of spiritual education for people to promote ‘understanding of Oneness’, ‘Love’ and ‘Unity’.

I wonder what could be a good applicable solution to this ‘Poverty’ and unjust distribution issue. This is definitely needed to be taken seriously even if those issues cease to provoke crimes. And other playing reasons behind crimes should be taken care of too.

 

Perfection

Perfection

This word prompted me to share a quote here –

God is busy with the completion of your work,

both outwardly and inwardly.

He is fully occupied with you.

Every human being is a work in progress

that is slowly but inexorably moving toward perfection.

We are each an unfinished work of art

both waiting and striving to be completed.

God deals with each of us separately

because humanity is a fine art of skilled penmanship

where every single dot is equally important for the entire picture.

~ Shams-i-Tabriz