Symbols of the world's religions



Meher Baba

War and the suffering which it inevitably brings cannot be avoided by mere propaganda against war. If war is to disappear from human experience it is essential to destroy its root-cause. The life of illusory values in which man is caught is the breeding ground of the chaos that precipitates war. Individual and collective egoism and selfishness, that hold most of mankind in their grip, are its root-cause.

Man alone is responsible for war. Through his greed, vanity, selfishness and cruelty he brings the recurring evil upon himself. God, in His Grace, transmutes this man-made tragedy into a channel for the quickening of humanity to a recognition of higher values. Appalling as it is, man's war is thus saved by the Infinite from remaining an unmitigated evil.

To purge himself, man has to become conscious of the redeeming God-Design in man-created war. To understand the real significance of violence and non-violence in this God-transmuted pattern of spiritual values requires a true perception of the meaning and purpose of existence.

Man's actions in war, therefore, should not be motivated by slogans, however high-sounding, that are based on erroneous concepts of violence or non-violence. His actions require the prompting of spiritual understanding, which is above men-made rules of Divine Love, which is above man-conceived duality.

God's design infuses man's war with the capacity to generate and foster many qualities of divine importance, preventing it, therefore, from being wholly without spiritual significance. When man's mania for possessions or dominance forces a peaceful people to take up arms for the sake of higher values or for unselfish considerations of general well-being, war becomes not merely inevitable, but spiritually defensible.

Under the stress of imminent danger, war inspires behavior that is free from the limited self. Action results that is kindled by an impersonal spirit of willing sacrifice for the welfare of others. It is better that such unselfish qualities be at least partially released under the stimulus of danger than that they remain wholly dormant. It is preferable for the pressure of collective calamity to free man if only temporarily from his petty self, than for him to remain permanently enslaved by the ignoble pursuit of personal safety and the ruthless perpetuation of his selfish existence.

In war the people of the earth are roused to make unlimited sacrifices and to endure untold agony for the sake of their countries or principles. In doing so they demonstrate their latent capacity for great sacrifice and endurance for high stakes, all of which is a triumph for the soul.

To claim special dispensation in war, for any particular race, religion or ideology is indefensible. All such assertions are based on the false doctrine of division and duality. Since the Law of the Universe is synonymous with Oneness, and Oneness precludes separation of one soul from another, or one part of mankind from another, there is no justification whatever for any side to claim in war that God favours it exclusively.

God does not scale His Grace to suit man's temporal quarrels and prejudices. His favour knows no discrimination; His Love is all-embracing.


MEHER BABA ON WAR, pp. 1-3, ed. K. K. Ramakrishnan
1972 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust


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