005. Some Family Secrets
Updated: Oct 22
After being an author for many years, a change in circumstances necessitated that I 're-purpose' myself as a newbie writer of a blog; this blog. My ears rang with warnings from concerned friends and family of the dangers that lurked out there in the ungoverned wild west of the worldwide web. Consequently I felt totally inadequate and wary of what a connection with the internet and its assortment of dark strangers might hold.
Therefore I was recently surprised to find Baha'i Comment supposedly had over 36,000+ unique visitors. Great, I thought... if people are actually reading it. But then I found myself wondering; unless people leave likes and comments, how do I know if it is being read, or just glanced at and immediately flicked away to some item more appealing to public interest, like hair restoration or an article on the Kardashians?
And right then, just as I was contemplating a wave - well, a ripple really - of success, that old provider closed down. No apologies, no excuses. Suddenly I lost contact with those 36,000+ visitors and had no way of letting them know about this, my hastily resurrected 'new' site.
Most people have had their own experiences of some misfortune putting an end to their plans. Now, due to Corona virus, unnumbered people have had their occupations, their dreams and even their lives brought to an unforeseen end. Even Kim and Chloe Kardashian's world has been reduced in previously unimagined ways.
This unprecedented event is a great leveller, affecting every single member of our family of man to different degrees. Suddenly we are confronted by both its universality and our collective inadequacy. It is happening to all of us at the same time, yet no-one has a solution.
Nothing in the recorded history of humanity has been so universally experienced, from the indigenous people of Central America to the wealthy Real House Wives of New York. And at no prior time has our oneness become so evident.
An earlier reference was made to the ability of genetic science to prove that we are all genetically related. This means that we all share common ancestors, by extrapolation can imagine one ancient African grandmother.
Some call her Eve. Ethiopians claim as family a woman known as Dinquines, aka 'Lucy', whose complete fossilised bones, dating back 4 million years, played an important part in clarifying the lines of our human evolution. Maori call her Papatuanuku. Although Maori had no written language, they did have prodigious memories, and so even today many can recite their forebears back many many generations.
Knowledge of the past is even more the case with ancient tribes like the Jews, Arabs, and those of the early Persian dynasties. An example of how this awareness lives in the present can be seen in a previous mention of the movement Women Wage Peace, where on their March for Peace a tent was named for Hagar and Sarah, wives of Abraham and scriptural mothers of Ishmael and Isaac, the half-brother patriarchs of both Muslims and Jews (Genesis 25:1).
And the impetus behind Women Waging Peace was more than an Israeli/Palestinian creation; rather, it was inspired by earlier women's movements in Northern Ireland and Liberia, where women and some men of different faiths had also united to help resolve violent conflicts, in unknowing anticipation of Abdu'l-Baha's words; "...war will cease; for woman will be the obstacle and hindrance to it. This is true and without doubt.' - The Promulgation of Universal Peace, -51.
This commonality was really foretold way back when our earliest books like the Bible and the Quran began, with a story of how one of these ancient ancestors, Abraham, was promised by God that he would become the Father of Nations.
Not only did His three sons go on to establish the great communities of Jews, Christians, Muslims and Baha'is that would eventually become established across the planet, but these are all very active and influential even to the present day.
However, true to our ancient family roots, all has not been well within the family, and certain members have disowned others. I am reminded of children squabbling over toys, or else who can play on their team - things that will have no meaning beyond the grave.
To be frank - and since you and I are family, I can trust this will go no further - some terrible things have been, and are being, done. Abraham must be turning in his grave.
So now is not the time for any of us to close down in the face of difficulty; it's time to recharge, regroup. Time to show a new and positive face to the world; time for an amalgam of past ideas with some fresh new ones. It's time for us all to challenge those old values that collectively brought us to the tragic state of our world today.
"Pride is not for him who loves his country, but for him who loves the [whole world]." - Abdu'l-Baha, A Traveller's Narrative.