The Pillars of a Society

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Selections from World Scripture on the righteous people, teachers, and ordinary people of courage, principle, and conscience who are called to be the internal leaders of society
  • 1. The Pillars of a Nation Selections from World Scripture: A Comparative Anthology of Sacred Texts Universal Peace Federation - International Leadership Conference
  • 2. Commentary <ul><li>The pillars of a nation are those exceptional people who provide its spiritual and moral anchor and bestow its vision and purpose. These are not ordinarily its politicians or rulers. Rather, they are the righteous people, saints, and teachers, ordinary people of courage, principle, and conscience; and people who realize the truth within themselves and are willing to take responsibility for their community. </li></ul>
  • 3. Commentary <ul><li>People who have a deep realization of truth are called to serve as society’s internal leaders. Their example and message has a transforming effect on those who are fortunate to know them. </li></ul><ul><li>Andrew Wilson, Editor, World Scripture </li></ul>
  • 4. Buddhism <ul><li>The perfume of flowers blows not against the wind, nor does the fragrance of sandalwood, ragara, and jasmine, but the fragrance of the virtuous blows against the wind; the virtuous man pervades every direction. </li></ul><ul><li>Dhammapada 54 </li></ul>
  • 5. Buddhism <ul><li>The bodhisattvas, guardians of the city of Dharma, uphold the true doctrine, and their great teachings resound like the lion’s roar throughout the ten directions. Without having to be asked, they are the natural spiritual benefactors of all living beings. </li></ul><ul><li>Holy Teaching of Vimalakirti 1 </li></ul>
  • 6. Hinduism <ul><li>The earth is upheld by the veracity of those who have subdued their passions, and, following righteous practices, are never contaminated by desire, covetousness, and wrath. </li></ul><ul><li>Vishnu Purana 3.12 </li></ul>
  • 7. Judaism <ul><li>There are [always] thirty righteous men among the nations, by whose virtue the nations of the world continue to exist. </li></ul><ul><li>Talmud, Hullin 92a </li></ul>Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundation; you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings. Isaiah 58.12
  • 8. Judaism <ul><li>Rabbi Assi and Rabbi Ammi, on an educational inspection tour, came to a town and asked for its guardians. The councilmen appeared, but the rabbis said, &quot;These are not guardians, but wreckers of a town! The guardians are the teachers of the young, and instructors of the old, as is written: 'Except the Lord keep the city, the watchman wakes but in vain' [Psalm 127.1].&quot; </li></ul><ul><li>Midrash, Lamentations Rabbah, Proem 2 </li></ul>
  • 9. Christianity <ul><li>You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet. You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. </li></ul><ul><li>Matthew 5:13-14 </li></ul>
  • 10. Islam <ul><li>They say, &quot;Why is not this Qur'an sent down to some leading man in either of the two chief cities?&quot; Is it they who would portion out the Mercy of the Lord? It is We Who portion out between them their livelihood in the life of this world: and We raise some of them above others in ranks, so that some may command work from others. But the Mercy of the Lord is better than the wealth which they amass. </li></ul><ul><li>Qur'an 43.31-32 </li></ul>
  • 11. Islam <ul><li>Surely Allah will raise for this community at the beginning of every century one who shall revive for it its faith. </li></ul><ul><li>Hadith of Abu Dawud </li></ul>
  • 12. Confucianism <ul><li>The myriad objects owe their existence to the mutual stimulation subsisting between Heaven and earth. Similarly, the holy sage stimulates men’s hearts and the whole world is thenceforth at peace. </li></ul><ul><li>I Ching 31. Attraction </li></ul>The moral man, by living a life of simple truth and earnestness, alone can help to bring peace and order in the world. Doctrine of the Mean 33
  • 13. African Traditional Religions <ul><li>A stranger colonial administrator, however vigilant, cannot perceive a locality as clearly as an indigene [village elder]. It is the attitude of the indigine to the affairs of his locality which determines that of the stranger to the same. Malofin, the entire town is in your hand. &quot;Situations do not get spoiled when elders are around.&quot; This is the age-old wise saying. </li></ul><ul><li>Yoruba Song (Nigeria) </li></ul>
  • 14. Native American Religions <ul><li>Remember seven generations in the past and consider seven generations in the future when making decisions that affect the people. </li></ul><ul><li>As long as there's one to sing and one to dance, one to speak and one to listen, life will go on. So as long as the instructions are being carried out, even if it's down to the last four, life will go on. </li></ul><ul><li> Haudenosaunee </li></ul>
  • 15. Commentary <ul><li>Take responsibility for the most difficult problem in your nation. Take responsibility for the most difficult problem of your church. Take responsibility for the most difficult problem of the world. </li></ul><ul><li>Sun Myung Moon </li></ul><ul><li>Founder, Universal Peace Federation </li></ul>
  • 16. For further reflection <ul><li>World Scripture: A Comparative Anthology of Sacred Texts </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Universal Peace Federation </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
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