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The Externalization of the Hierarchy - Section III - Forces behind the Evolutionary Process
May I point out here that the value of the individual is surely based on the inherent divinity of the human spirit and on the integrity of the whole. It is founded also on the knowledge, which must underlie all future reconstruction work, that at the very heart of the universe is a divine Power, call it what you will, and on the faith that love is the very law of life itself, in spite of all appearances and the record of the past.

It is essential that we be practical in our approach to [381] the subject and that the reconstruction plans involve steps which are possible and which the average man can take. The first practical attitude to be taken is to crush out hate because it is non-constructive and hindering. It blinds the vision and warps the judgment, and simply feeds the growth of fear and horror. But the love demanded of us is neither emotional nor sentimental. It is intensely practical, and expresses itself in service and cooperative activity. It seeks to aid all movements that benefit humanity and are in line with the new incoming era. Many people think that an emotional reaction and clamoring outcry of horror at what has overtaken the world indicates love and spiritual sensitivity. It is far more likely to indicate self-centeredness and personal discomfort. True love has no time for these reactions, because the work of alleviation is entirely engrossing. The man who loves his fellowmen is mentally poised and intelligently working; he is mobilizing all his forces for the service of the hour. A truly compassionate heart is not emotional.

Our second step, therefore, after the recognition of individual responsibility, is to replace emotion by practical love, expressed in selfless service. The third step is to reorganize our lives so that we have time for this needed service. Most people are not getting the maximum of results out of their daily lives, and this for several reasons. Frequently they do not really desire to make the sacrifices which such service demands; often they are under the delusion that their present output of service represents their utmost possibility; again, they fancy that their health could stand no more active work, or that they require time for themselves, or they waste many valuable hours doing those things which yield no real results. If, however, the need today is as great as we are led to believe, if this is the hour of man's extremity, if the issues are so great that the entire future of the race depends upon the outcome of the war, then the one thing that really matters is for man to play his part, to mobilize his time and all that he has and make that supreme effort which will release life and energy and make the winning of the war something immediately possible and the rebuilding [382] era a success. This he must do at any cost, even that of life itself. A spiritual paradox becomes apparent. The individual is of supreme importance, and yet at the same time what happens to him as he serves and fights for human freedom is of no individual importance at all. A brief period of organized effort and, at the end, death, is of more vital usefulness today than a futile doing of the things a man feels like doing in a leisurely way, and then meandering feebly down the years.

Therefore, the development of a sense of individual responsibility, the expression of real love in service and the reorganizing the life so as to get the utmost out of each day constitutes the preparatory stage for the man who seeks to participate in the reconstruction period.

Having then done this to the best of his ability (and many have already made a good beginning) he must develop in himself and evoke in others the spirit of goodwill. This will-to-good is of immediate effectiveness, because it governs a man's relation to his family and his household, his business or social associates, his casual acquaintances and all with whom he may come in contact. It enables him to begin the work of reconstruction right where he is and trains him in a familiar environment to practice right human relations. It is the major and potent factor which can enable the otherwise futile individual to become a focal point of constructive influence. He will then discover that, as a result of this, his sphere of constructive influence is continually enlarging.

These are the first four steps, and they are perhaps the most difficult, for they are non-spectacular and almost constitute spiritual platitudes. But they are the essential and unavoidable preliminaries for the man who wants to work wisely, usefully and intuitively in the future.

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