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Thanks to the Peace-Builders from the Baha’is

David Langness | Sep 21, 2013

The views expressed in our content reflect individual perspectives and do not represent the official views of the Baha'i Faith.

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David Langness | Sep 21, 2013

The views expressed in our content reflect individual perspectives and do not represent the official views of the Baha'i Faith.

Retro illustration with peace symbol.On September 21st, the United Nations International Day of Peace, also recognized as World Gratitude Day, Baha’is around the world give thanks to all those who work for peace.

In every village and hamlet, in every town and city, in every region and country and international body people motivated by the ideal of peace work toward its eventual establishment in the world. Those builders of the edifice of peace deserve our gratitude.

Every person, child, adolescent or adult, who works with heart and soul to bring about a better condition in the world – we thank you.

Since its beginnings in 1863, the Baha’is have advocated a unified global federation of nations to bring about an end to war, hostility and violence:

The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens. – Baha’u’llah, Tablets of Baha’u’llah, p. 167.

…the fire of war is world-consuming, whereas the rays of peace are world-enlightening. One is death, the other is life; this is extinction, that is immortality; one is the most great calamity, the other is the most great bounty; this is darkness, that is light; this is eternal humiliation and that is everlasting glory; one is the destroyer of the foundation of man, the other is the founder of the prosperity of the human race. – Abdu’l-Baha, Baha’i Scriptures, p. 543.

Baha’is abhor violence and war, and believe that human beings all have the right and the responsibility to demand that their governments cease waging war on each other and come together to outlaw it:

The time must come when the imperative necessity for the holding of a vast, an all-embracing assemblage of men will be universally realized. The rulers and kings of the earth must needs attend it, and, participating in its deliberations, must consider such ways and means as will lay the foundations of the world’s Great Peace amongst men. Such a peace demandeth that the Great Powers should resolve, for the sake of the tranquillity of the peoples of the earth, to be fully reconciled among themselves. Should any king take up arms against another, all should unitedly arise and prevent him. If this be done, the nations of the world will no longer require any armaments, except for the purpose of preserving the security of their realms and of maintaining internal order within their territories. This will ensure the peace and composure of every people, government and nation. – Baha’u’llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah, p. 248.

This early and consistent anti-war emphasis in the Baha’i teachings motivated the international Baha’i community to support the establishment of the League of Nations in the 1920’s and the United Nations in the 1940’s. In this statement to the U.N. in 1947, the worldwide Baha’i community outlined its vision of a united, supra-national global government that would rid the world of war:

Peace Drawing with DovesWorld order has become legally possible, socially imperative, and divinely ordained. The principle of federation has already united previously independent communities diverse in race, language, religion and size of population. The nations can find just expression for their legitimate rights and needs through proportionate representation in a supranational body. Until world citizenship is guaranteed as a social status, the human rights and privileges developed in the past are undermined by the disruption of modern society.

The order herein affirmed implies the establishment of a world commonwealth uniting all nations, races, creeds and classes and safeguarding the autonomy of its state members and the personal freedom and initiative of the individuals that compose them. The commonwealth would consist of a world legislature functioning as trustees of the whole of mankind and enacting the laws required to regulate the life, satisfy the needs and adjust the relationships of all races and peoples. Its world executive, backed by an international Force, would carry out the laws and decisions decreed by the world legislature, and safeguard the organic unity of the whole commonwealth. Its world tribunal would adjudicate and render final and compulsory verdict in any and all disputes arising between the various elements constituting the universal system. – A Baha’i Declaration of Human Obligations and Rights, Presented to the First Session of the UN Commission on Human Rights, February 1947.

Baha’is believe that a unified world commonwealth will end war. We humbly thank everyone everywhere who works toward that glorious goal.

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  • Françoise Carisse
    Jul 29, 2016
    Love and Gratitude for your tremendous work. Peace upon us all.
  • Aug 10, 2014
    God has filled me with a strong desire to defend the hippies no matter wrong they were with drugs and other amoral acts.Thank you for Bahai words of thanks to the peacemakers, a large number of which are called hippies.
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