In Kazakhstan, October 18 is celebrated as a day that unites the people around traditional moral values, promulgates the idea of tolerance and spiritual accord for the sake of peace and stability of Kazakhstan society.
On October 18th 1992 the 1st World Congress of Spiritual Consent under the patronage of Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev took place in Almaty. Those attended called to declare October 18th the Day of Spiritual Consent, the day of suspension of conflicts and clashes, day for search for reconciliation, charity and help day.
With his support and hard work of another visionary, Mukhamedzhanov Tolegen Mukhamedzhanovich, founded the International Association of Peace Through Culture, which has taken these principles globally through the World Forum of Spiritual Culture.
Since that time Kazakhstan has been celebrating it as the national holiday. Over the subsequent years of independence, Kazakhstan, unlike nearly every other country in its region, has avoided inter-religions or inter ethnic-conflict.Kazakhstan has preserved its political stability, interethnic and interfaith accord.
As a part of the 2021 October 18th celebration, GSI President Jonathan Granoff presented a paper titled Human Security: Spiritual, Practical and Realistic, From the Personal to the Global, following his 2020 presentation of Principles for Inner and Outer Peace. It is our belief that peace is a birthright of every human being and peace amongst nations and religions is a duty for all of us to work to achieve.
Spiritual, Practical, and Realistic, From the Personal to Global
Astana Forum, Spiritual Accord as the Basis of Peace
Respectfully submitted, Jonathan Granoff, President Global Security Institute
With enormous gratitude for those who have organized this Conference, especially
Tolegen Mukhamedzhanov, President of “Peace through Culture” International Association and Co-chairman of the Presidium of the World Forum of Spiritual Culture
We live in a moment in history where the ethical and spiritual principles of wisdom converge with the global practical realistic policies that are required for humanity’s survival.
In the ancient Upanishads is a saying: The world is one family.
The ethical expression of this principle of human unity in various iterations characterized as the Golden Rule is demonstrably universal. It does not arise from any particular religion. It resonates from the awakened human conscience. Here is evidence of the breadth of its expression.
Greek Philosophy: “Do not do to others that which would anger you if others did it to you.” Socrates; Buddhism: “Hurt not others in ways that you yourself would find hurtful.” Udanavarga, 5:18; Christianity: “All things whatsoever you would that men should do to you, do you even so to them.” Matthew 7:12; Confucianism: “Do not unto others what you would not have them do unto you.” Analects 15:23; Hinduism: “This is the sum of duty: do not unto others that which would cause you pain if done to you.” Mahabharata 5:1517; Islam: “No one of you is a believer until he desires for his brother that which he desires for himself.” Hadith; Jainism: “In happiness and suffering, in joy and grief, we should regard all creatures as we regard our own self.” Lord Mahavir 24th Tirthankara; Judaism: “What is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow man. That is the law; all the rest is commentary.” Talmud, Shabbat 31a; Zoroastrianism: “That nature only is good when it shall not do unto another whatsoever is not good for its own self.” Dadistan-I-Dinik, 94:5.
The application of this wisdom leads to personal security and peace. It will, the in the words of the Sufi Saint Bawa Muhaiyaddeen cause a person to separate from themselves that which separates them from others. Anger, jealousy, greed, hastiness, prejudice, fanaticism, bigotry, vanity, and pride separate us from each other as well as the core of our being, the luminosity of the soul, while love, compassion, tolerance, peacefulness, justice, humility, and patience bring us to the most magnificent secret of the human birth, not only our connection with each other but also the unity with the Source of our lives, the great mystery called God, Andavan, Allah, Yahweh, Nameless One, and other expressions in so many languages. This fulfills personal human security. This weaves unity with the entire human family and indeed all life itself.
This moral and spiritual admonition was powerfully expressed by Saadi in the 13th century by his emphasizing that from an Unseen Essence humanity was created and its parts, each of us, are as one body. When there is an injury to any portion, any person, a healing response can arise. We can each respond from compassion.
Oh you who do not feel the suffering of others, can you call yourself truly human? It is precisely this human capacity of compassion in action that grants personal security.
When nations abide by the principles of justice and reciprocity peace and security arise. Nine nations claiming the right to brandish nuclear weapons, extolling their righteousness while threatening global annihilation and preventing others from worshiping this idolatrous evil generates disequilibrium and insecurity. The reparations leveled on Germany by the victors after World War I brought us the chaos of Nazism. While the Marshall Plan executed by the United States built up Germany and Japan, the vanquished, and created allies and trading partners. Virtue in action brings human security. Nations must treat each other as they wish to be treated. Institutions that claim moral authority, such as religions, also must apply this principle. This is the ethical basis of international Human Security.
Human security now must be applied globally. Human security means security in the daily lives of people – in their homes, their health, their jobs, their neighborhoods and communities, and their freedom and dignity. Human security is an approach, a focus and purpose, that differs in its focus from pursuing nationalistic security through militarism. The world spent over $1.9 Trillion last year in the futile pursuit of security overemphasizing military means. The first duty of every state is the security of its citizens. The real threats we face today are primarily global in both impact and solution.
Military pursuits of security cannot address the very real threats of today that impact every life on the planet. The global threats we all face make us realize we are indeed one human family and for our well-being we must protect, not just our species, but also the entire web of life. The threats that compel a new realism based on global human security include the world’s financial system, nuclear weapons, cyber security, protecting bio-diversity, the climate, the oceans where over 50% of our oxygen is generated, the rainforests which are like lungs for our species, the top soil, fresh water, and our collective health, which today’s pandemic has shown us is fragile and globally integrated.
The explosive use of less than one percent of the over 13,000 nuclear weapons in the world would so adversely impact the ozone and the climate by throwing millions of tons of soot into the stratosphere that civilization as we know it would collapse. We must eliminate these weapons or this catastrophe will happen by accident, design, or madness. The consequence of failing to rapidly stop burning fossil fuels will be ever increasing severe droughts, heat waves, water shortages, devastating storms, rising oceans and oceanic temperature changes, and the collapse of ecosystems. These are but two examples of numerous threats that impact every individual life today and future generations and that require global cooperation, the understanding that we are one human family, the application of Human Security.
The spiritual admonition of the wise and pure to see the human family as one has been with us since ancient times as a moral compass point for personal spiritual nourishment and health. However, for the first time in human history this has also become become a practical necessity. For this generation and future generations this insight’s application is necessary for the very survival of our species. Not only must each of use strive to apply the Golden Rule in our personal lives but nations and religions must treat each as they wish to be treated to bring global stability. This will transform the vain dysfunctional pursuit of the law of power, so often generating war and enormous suffering, to the stabilizing power of law. Law without justice brings tyranny and suffering. Law based on the compassion inherent in the guidance of the wise brings stability flourishing and peace. Today the practical and the spiritually resonant converge in a compelling new way. Let us respond with our hearts, minds and hands to the challenge.
Jonathan Granoff is the President of the Global Security Institute, a representative to United Nations of the World Summits of Nobel Peace Laureates, a former Adjunct Professor of International Law at Widener University School of Law, and Senior Advisor to the Committee on National Security American Bar Association International Law Section.