Bahai Forums

Go Back   Baha'i Forums > Baha'i Forums > General Discussion

General Discussion Open Baha'i Discussion


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-16-2017, 10:31 AM   #1
Member
 
camachoe's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2017
From: Mexico
Posts: 67
Is the world getting better?

As a whole, yes.
A big, big, big yes.
The world has been getting not just wealthier, healthier, more just, more secure, but what is more important and less understood, more moral.
The facts that support this notion are there, for everyone to see.

We have many problems, no doubt about it. No period in human history has been devoid of problems. But we are now in a much better position to address them.

When I was a Christian I used to see the modern world as decadent. I was tought that Satan was the "Prince of this World" (what an irony that I would years later understand that such prince, predicted by Jesus, was Bahá'u'lláh).

Wars, widespread crime, rates of divorce and suicide, sexual indecency, terrorism, inequality, pandemics, everything appointed to being in the worst time of history.

How wrong I was! This is indeed the best time in history, by almost any measurement.
Shoot the indicator: infant mortality, % of people with access to clean water, % of countries ruled by dictators, literacy, % of world population that can communicate with each other through a second language, you name it.

Even in the case of climate change, in which we are clearly worse off, we have now the tools that our ancestors could not even dream of having to modify earth for the betterment of human race.

Interestingly, most people think we are worse off, grossly underestimating our achivements and overestimating our problems. Please read this article.

Bahá'u'lláh said that Jesus brought with His dispensation a big push to civilization. So Mohammed did with the Islamic culture.
Bahá'u'llah dispensation came at the right time, when mankind was ready to start embracing his message and working to reach the next level.

This READINESS brings me a sense of humbleness and responsibility. It means to me that I was lucky to be born in a time of history where I and my fellow human beings have the access to the knowledge, income, and relationships that will make the Lesser Peace and the Most Great Peace not a pipe dream, but a concrete, attinable goal. A goal that I can pursue. A goal in which I must actively get involved, without excuse.

I salute the world. I love the world. Not because I want to get attached to the things within the world, but because I want to flow with it.

Do you happen to meet people at your family or workplace who complain of these being the worst times of history? What do you tell them?

Last edited by camachoe; 06-16-2017 at 10:44 AM.
 
Join Baha'i Forums


Welcome to Baha'i Forums, an open Baha'i Faith community! We welcome everyone and the community is free to join so register today and become part of the Baha'i Forums family!


Old 06-16-2017, 12:09 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Walrus's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2014
From: Wisconsin
Posts: 563
Indeed!! The idea that things are going backwards is a result of our communication systems improving. So while violence and crime are constantly going down statistically, our awareness of every single violent crime is going up, creating an illusion that it is growing more common.

Quote:
Originally Posted by camachoe View Post
Do you happen to meet people at your family or workplace who complain of these being the worst times of history? What do you tell them?
Usually I show them the statistics. They usually show me some statistics back, and then I usually end up showing me why the statistics they use are misleading: (for example, mass shootings are at very low levels, but someone showed me a study that implied otherwise... the study in question they were using was essentially warping the data by counting any incident where any gun was shot at least once in the presence of three or more people, excluding the shooter, as a "mass shooting", even if no one was even hit, and including police activity or people firing warning shots to scare away criminals).

I've found I need to dig deep into most statistics. Most media organizations use whatever tactics they can to make things look scary, because that's what gets people to watch them. Digging into any scary looking statistic usually finds some sort of data massaging, though. And the real statistics usually tell a positive story.

Last edited by Walrus; 06-16-2017 at 12:14 PM.
 
Old 06-16-2017, 06:54 PM   #3
Tony Bristow-Stagg
 
tonyfish58's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2010
From: Normanton Far North Queensland
Posts: 3,879
Quote:
Originally Posted by camachoe View Post
As a whole, yes.
A big, big, big yes.
The world has been getting not just wealthier, healthier, more just, more secure, but what is more important and less understood, more moral.
The facts that support this notion are there, for everyone to see.

We have many problems, no doubt about it. No period in human history has been devoid of problems. But we are now in a much better position to address them.

When I was a Christian I used to see the modern world as decadent. I was tought that Satan was the "Prince of this World" (what an irony that I would years later understand that such prince, predicted by Jesus, was Bahá'u'lláh).

Wars, widespread crime, rates of divorce and suicide, sexual indecency, terrorism, inequality, pandemics, everything appointed to being in the worst time of history.

How wrong I was! This is indeed the best time in history, by almost any measurement.
Shoot the indicator: infant mortality, % of people with access to clean water, % of countries ruled by dictators, literacy, % of world population that can communicate with each other through a second language, you name it.

Even in the case of climate change, in which we are clearly worse off, we have now the tools that our ancestors could not even dream of having to modify earth for the betterment of human race.

Interestingly, most people think we are worse off, grossly underestimating our achivements and overestimating our problems. Please read this article.

Bahá'u'lláh said that Jesus brought with His dispensation a big push to civilization. So Mohammed did with the Islamic culture.
Bahá'u'llah dispensation came at the right time, when mankind was ready to start embracing his message and working to reach the next level.

This READINESS brings me a sense of humbleness and responsibility. It means to me that I was lucky to be born in a time of history where I and my fellow human beings have the access to the knowledge, income, and relationships that will make the Lesser Peace and the Most Great Peace not a pipe dream, but a concrete, attinable goal. A goal that I can pursue. A goal in which I must actively get involved, without excuse.

I salute the world. I love the world. Not because I want to get attached to the things within the world, but because I want to flow with it.

Do you happen to meet people at your family or workplace who complain of these being the worst times of history? What do you tell them?
Well stated camachoe

I will have to tell them the Fire of Gods Love is consuming the Old World Order and the New World Order is now rolling out in its stead.

Do you want to pioneer to Normanton Far North Queensland, your fire is needed here .... but of course many other places as well!

Regards Tony
 
Old 06-17-2017, 05:18 AM   #4
Member
 
Joined: Feb 2016
From: United States
Posts: 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by camachoe View Post
As a whole, yes.
A big, big, big yes.
The world has been getting not just wealthier, healthier, more just, more secure, but what is more important and less understood, more moral.
The facts that support this notion are there, for everyone to see.
I don't have much to say about this at the moment other than that this post really made my day!
 
Old 06-17-2017, 01:41 PM   #5
Minor Bloodsucker
 
gnat's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2014
From: Stockholm
Posts: 1,511
A Chinese, when asked for his opinion on the French Revolution in 1789, replied "It's too early to make any conclusions".

gnat
 
Old 06-17-2017, 04:11 PM   #6
Junior Member
 
Amzolt's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2017
From: Akron, OH, USA
Posts: 22
Thanks for your inspiring post :-)
 
Old 06-17-2017, 08:32 PM   #7
Member
 
camachoe's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2017
From: Mexico
Posts: 67
Walrus: there is a very interesting book for the general public with good stats and hard data: The Rational Optimist, by Matt Ridley. It is worth reading and sharing.
 
Old 06-18-2017, 12:00 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Earth's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2012
From: Earth
Posts: 134
Greetings Camachoe,

Perhaps it is not so much a question about the values of people getting better, but rather in appreciating how the process of spiritual transformation works and what is required in order to help human society adopt universal moral values?

In matters pertaining to human morality and the role religions have to play in this transformative process, you might find it interesting to look at this TED talk by Jonathan Haida https://www.ted.com/talks/jonathan_h...ence#t-1077205

As morality appears to be a natural evolutionary process that is hot-wired into us as a species, human society will naturally progress towards obtaining a global morality under the right conditions. So when people ask me questions about such matters, I gently guide them in a way and manner where I can start to help them grasp some of the material published in this document: The Promise of World Peace

Earth
 
Old 06-18-2017, 06:18 AM   #9
Junior Member
 
Amzolt's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2017
From: Akron, OH, USA
Posts: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Earth View Post
Greetings Camachoe,

Perhaps it is not so much a question about the values of people getting better, but rather in appreciating how the process of spiritual transformation works and what is required in order to help human society adopt universal moral values?

Earth
I'm wondering...

Could you expand on your thinking in this paragraph?

It "seems" you're saying it's "not really" people becoming more moral, it's society getting more moral---yet, my readings of the literature seem to indicate it's Both; and, they depend on each other...
 
Old 06-18-2017, 12:12 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Joined: May 2013
From: forest falls california
Posts: 1,768
Bury my Heart at Normanton

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonyfish58 View Post
Well stated camachoe

I will have to tell them the Fire of Gods Love is consuming the Old World Order and the New World Order is now rolling out in its stead.

Do you want to pioneer to Normanton Far North Queensland, your fire is needed here .... but of course many other places as well!

Regards Tony
There is a book called "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee."

So Tony, Normanton sounds like a good place to bury one's heart.

Ya Baha'ul'Abha!!!
 
Old 06-18-2017, 07:26 PM   #11
Member
 
Joined: Feb 2016
From: United States
Posts: 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by dale ramsdell View Post
There is a book called "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee."

So Tony, Normanton sounds like a good place to bury one's heart.

Ya Baha'ul'Abha!!!
I think I read this book years ago for school. Not a happy book. I don't really remember much about it though, and I don't remember the exact significance of the title. Just to refresh my memory, could you explain what it means and just what you mean by your use of the reference in this thread? I'm not going to get around to rereading the book soon to figure it out.
 
Old 06-19-2017, 05:03 AM   #12
Member
 
camachoe's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2017
From: Mexico
Posts: 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Earth View Post
Greetings Camachoe,

Perhaps it is not so much a question about the values of people getting better, but rather in appreciating how the process of spiritual transformation works and what is required in order to help human society adopt universal moral values?
Perhaps we can measure how much a person values something by looking at what is she willing to do to attain (or maintain) what she claims to value... How much work, sacrifice, time and resources she is willing to place.

In that sense, society seems to be valuing more than ever things like respect to human rights (including basic rights like free of speech and religion abut also property rights), gender equality, and knowledge and education in general.

Yes, we are horrified in the face of the inefficacy of Blue Helmets to stop genocide in Rwanda, but there was a time when people would not even expect a force of peace to exist. We shake in shame in the face of the revelations of the "Panama Papers" about our political leaders ... but plundering of people's wealth was considered the right of the kings in the past.... nothing to be prosecuted.

We have strived to set better institutions, procedures, and social feedback mechanisms, like social ostracism for wrong-doers.
A wrong-doer is, in fact, exposed almost instantly to millions in Facebook through candid videos. Why? because behind the mobile camera there was a person who cared enough about exposing evil.

Pope Francis prays in a mosque... instead of calling for a crusade to kill Muslims. If an adulterous woman is sentenced to be stoned to death in Nigeria, the whole world not just tears off their rags, but perform acts of sociopolitical pressure that many times end up working.

So, based on what people do, or strive to do, it seems to me that values are changing.

As the Master said:

"The doors of the Kingdom are opened. The lights of the Sun of Truth are shining. The clouds of divine mercy are raining down their priceless jewels. The zephyrs of a new and divine springtime are wafting their fragrant breaths from the invisible world. Know ye then the value of these days...
...This is the springtime of Bahá’u’lláh. The verdure and foliage of spiritual growth are appearing in great abundance in the gardens of human hearts. Know ye the value of these passing days and vanishing nights...
"

Last edited by camachoe; 06-19-2017 at 05:38 AM.
 
Old 06-20-2017, 04:38 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
Earth's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2012
From: Earth
Posts: 134
Greetings Amzolt,

Good to see you posting again. I hope that you are well.

Camachoe has kindly offered a response to you and I thank him for this.

If you look around human society you will find that some people choose to attribute moral values to themselves, along with people and organisations that they personally favour. However, they might be less than cordial to the morals shown by potential competitors. This is an obvious fact, but it should serve as warning why we need to take care when people or organisations seek to extol themselves in either a partisan or self-congratulatory manner.

Morals are universal. Every person has them, but the amount is graded by degrees. The degree to which they are acquired is dependent upon the extent of sacrifice that is made. The higher the sacrifice the less a person is willing to discuss their spiritual achievements with others. So those that possess the highest morals of all, unless they die through their actions, are often completely invisible to others.

This was the point I was endeavouring to make in the passage you drew attention to. My apologies if it might have appeared confusing or contradictory in some manner.

Earth
 
Old 06-20-2017, 06:12 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
becky's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2014
From: colorado/summer-Oklahoma/winter
Posts: 752
Quote:
Originally Posted by Earth View Post
Greetings Amzolt,

Good to see you posting again. I hope that you are well.

Camachoe has kindly offered a response to you and I thank him for this.

If you look around human society you will find that some people choose to attribute moral values to themselves, along with people and organisations that they personally favour. However, they might be less than cordial to the morals shown by potential competitors. This is an obvious fact, but it should serve as warning why we need to take care when people or organisations seek to extol themselves in either a partisan or self-congratulatory manner.

Morals are universal. Every person has them, but the amount is graded by degrees. The degree to which they are acquired is dependent upon the extent of sacrifice that is made. The higher the sacrifice the less a person is willing to discuss their spiritual achievements with others. So those that possess the highest morals of all, unless they die through their actions, are often completely invisible to others.

This was the point I was endeavouring to make in the passage you drew attention to. My apologies if it might have appeared confusing or contradictory in some manner.

Earth
Yes.

A man who does great good, and talks not of it, is on the way to perfection.
The man who has accomplished a small good and magnifies it in his speech is worth very little.

Abdu'l-Baha', Paris Talks, no. 1.11-12
 
Old 06-20-2017, 08:54 AM   #15
Junior Member
 
Amzolt's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2017
From: Akron, OH, USA
Posts: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Earth View Post
Greetings Amzolt,

Good to see you posting again. I hope that you are well.

Camachoe has kindly offered a response to you and I thank him for this.

If you look around human society you will find that some people choose to attribute moral values to themselves, along with people and organisations that they personally favour. However, they might be less than cordial to the morals shown by potential competitors. This is an obvious fact, but it should serve as warning why we need to take care when people or organisations seek to extol themselves in either a partisan or self-congratulatory manner.

Morals are universal. Every person has them, but the amount is graded by degrees. The degree to which they are acquired is dependent upon the extent of sacrifice that is made. The higher the sacrifice the less a person is willing to discuss their spiritual achievements with others. So those that possess the highest morals of all, unless they die through their actions, are often completely invisible to others.

This was the point I was endeavouring to make in the passage you drew attention to. My apologies if it might have appeared confusing or contradictory in some manner.

Earth
Thanks for your explanation :-)
 
Reply

  Baha'i Forums > Baha'i Forums > General Discussion

Tags
world



Thread Tools
Display Modes



Facebook @bahaiforums RSS


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
Copyright © 2006 - 2017 Bahai Forums. All rights reserved.