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The Externalization of the Hierarchy - Section II - The General World Picture
The Religious Problem

When we come to consider religion in the new world order, we are faced with a far more complicated problem [201] and yet, at the same time, with a far easier one. The reason for this is that the subject of religion is one which is studied and somewhat understood by the majority of men. On theological interpretations there are wide differences; on a widespread recognition of a universal divine Intelligence or of God (by whatever name the all-embracing Life may be called) there is a general similarity of reaction. Forms of religion are so different, and the theological adherents are so fierce in their loyalties and partisanships, that the emergence of a world religion is necessarily of profound difficulty. But that emergence is very close at hand and the differences are relatively superficial. The new world religion is nearer than many think, and this is due to two things: first, the theological quarrels are mainly over non-essentials, and secondly, the younger generation is basically spiritual but quite uninterested in theology.

The intelligent youth of all countries are rapidly repudiating orthodox theology, state ecclesiasticism and the control of the church. They are neither interested in man-made interpretations of truth nor in past quarrels between the major world religions. At the same time, they are profoundly interested in the spiritual values and are earnestly seeking verification of their deep seated unvoiced recognitions. They look to no bible or system of so-called inspired spiritual knowledge and revelation, but their eyes are on the undefined larger wholes in which they seek to merge and lose themselves, such as the state, an ideology, or humanity itself. In this expression of the spirit of self-abnegation may be seen the appearance of the deepest truth of all religion and the justification of the Christian message. Christ, in His high place, cares not whether men accept the theological interpretations of scholars and churchmen, but He does care whether the keynote of His life of sacrifice and service is reproduced among men; it is immaterial to Him whether the emphasis laid upon the detail and the veracity of the Gospel story is recognized and accepted, for He is more interested that the search for truth and for subjective spiritual experience should persist; He knows that within [202] each human heart is found that which responds instinctively to God, and that the hope of ultimate glory lies hid in the Christ-consciousness.

Therefore, in the new world order, spirituality will supersede theology; living experience will take the place of theological acceptances. The spiritual realities will emerge with increasing clarity and the form aspect will recede into the background; dynamic, expressive truth will be the keynote of the new world religion. The living Christ will assume His rightful place in human consciousness and see the fruition of His plans, sacrifice and service, but the hold of the ecclesiastical orders will weaken and disappear. Only those will remain as guides and leaders of the human spirit who speak from living experience, and who know no creedal barriers; they will recognize the onward march of revelation and the new emerging truths. These truths will be founded on the ancient realities but will be adapted to modern need and will manifest progressively the revelation of the divine nature and quality. God is now known as Intelligence and Love. That the past has given us. He must be known as Will and Purpose, and that the future will reveal.

When the racial problem has disappeared through the recognition of the one Life, when the economic problem has been solved by the nations working cooperatively together, when the problem of right government within each nation has been determined by the free will of their respective peoples, and the spirit of true religion is unobstructed by ancient forms and interpretations, then we shall see a world in process of right experience, right human relations and a spiritual moving forward to reality.

A study of these four lines of human living will show how truly Germany is today the focal point of the world situation. In that unhappy nation, the racial problem has attained such importance that the entire world is affected. From the economic angle, Hitler has said that Germany has been forced to fight in order to preserve the life, economically speaking, of her people; factually, the economic life of Germany was not as critically threatened as that of many [203] smaller nations. The problem of government has also been brought to a critical point by German activity and conquest and by the emphasis laid by the Axis powers upon the relation of the state to the individual. The attitude of the German rulers to religion is recognized as one of pronounced antagonism. Thus the four major world problems are today being precipitated by Germany into the arena of action; they are evoking enquiry everywhere; the attention of men in every land is now focused on these problems, and solution is inevitable when the war is over. When these problems are rightly approached by the men and women of goodwill, then we shall see a "world planning" for the production of harmonious living such as never before has been possible.

It is for humanity to solve its serious problems on the basis of brotherhood, and so bring in a way of living which will provide adequate supply of the necessities of life through the proper organizing of time, labor and goods. This will lead to an interplay between the citizen and the state which will evoke the service of the individual and the right protection of the state. Humanity will then be free for the experiment of spiritual living, and this will express itself through awakened human lives. Can more be asked for or expected than this? Such a way of life can be made possible if the men and women of goodwill, of intelligence and of idealism can begin the task of inaugurating the new world order.

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