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The Externalization of the Hierarchy - Section III - Forces behind the Evolutionary Process
The Interlude between War and Peace

August 1942

There is an insistent demand from the many thousands who in the past have read the pamphlets and articles which I have written, that I say something about the coming period of rehabilitation, and of what can be done (whilst the war is still in progress) to prepare for usefulness at that time. When the war broke out, I published an article entitled The Present World Crisis, and in it tried to trace the origins of the conflict and the factors which made this catastrophe possible. Later, another article appeared, called The Coming World Order, which sought to hold out to a suffering world a vision of a material and spiritual future which the hearts of men have long demanded. Thus an attempt was made to deal with both the past and the future.

More at that time was not possible, owing to the disunity existing among those nations which today form the United Nations. There was also a lack of understanding and a selfish perspective among those nations at that time neutral. Above everything else was the fact that the issues involved had to be settled by humanity itself and it was not then possible to foretell with any accuracy what humanity would do. Even the most enlightened of men and the spiritual leaders of the race could not judge what line mankind would take or whether there were enough clear-sighted people in the world who could and would sweep the mass of men into effective opposition to the Axis Powers. The question was: Would world fear and universal selfishness dominate, or would the spirit of freedom and the love of liberty be strong enough to weld the free nations into one united and steadfast whole?

Today the issue is clear and the end inevitable. The free nations and the defeated and enslaved little nations are subjectively and practically unified into one intense spiritual determination to win the war; the fate of the Axis Nations is therefore unalterably settled, even though, at this time of writing, they seem to be victorious all along [365] the line. It is only the time of the final victory of right against might which remains as yet the factor of uncertainty, and this is owing to the enormous prepared strength of the aggressor nations and the unpreparedness of the democracies. This unpreparedness is being rapidly remedied.

This article is an attempt to indicate the problems, and perhaps some of the solutions, which must inevitably fill the interlude between the ending of the war and the coming world order. It will be necessary to deal with this subject in a broad and general way, for the subject is too vast for us to be intelligently specific. We can, however, consider the immediate work to be done in preparation for the cessation of war and indicate the first steps which can and should be taken to initiate sound reconstruction processes. The period of rehabilitation and of reconstruction should be the deep concern today of all who love their fellowmen.

There are those who will consider the study of the coming reconstruction period as premature. They believe (and rightly) that our first immediate concern is to win the war, and with this I am fully in agreement. The will-to-victory is the first and basic essential, for there will be no true reconstruction activity if the Axis nations triumph. But there are many today whose task is not that of fighting and whose place and function is perforce in the civilian aspects of the life of the nations. These can think, and talk, and work in preparation for the future. There are others who feel that only the trained expert in the fields of economic and political readjustment can approach this difficult problem with any hope of making a useful contribution. Still others feel that peace is the only thing that matters and that it should be followed by a long period of mental quiet in every country; they believe that people everywhere are too exhausted and unhappy to be ready as yet to undertake any work of rebuilding. Others again are so completely pessimistic that they despair of ever reclaiming the world, and they look sadly for a breakdown of all the civilized processes of living. There is some truth in all these points of view. The work of the experts will be sorely needed, but [366] the understanding interest and the sustaining power of those whose hearts are aflame with love can alone make their work possible. It will not be the institutionalized activities and the financial enterprise of economic and social workers and government agents which will alone be needed, but above all else, the solution must be found in the uprising of goodwill in the hearts of men. This will provide the right compassionate incentive. Most certainly the world could be rehabilitated for purely commercial and selfish reasons, and because trade interchange, buying and selling capacity and the restoration of financial stability are important factors in world restoration. But these are not the basic motives which would restore humanity to self-respecting and secure living. They will provide the motive power for many men and groups, but not the motive which can produce true constructive rebuilding of the fabric of human life.

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