Archive for January, 2020

Baha’i Month: Sultan/Sovereignty 1, 176 B.E. (1/19/2020)

Sunday, January 19th, 2020
This article appeared in the El Paso Herald on January 19, 1912, the first day of the Baha’i month of Sultan, in advance of Abdu’l-Baha’s travels through America that year. Little was known of the Baha’i Faith at that time in America and some notions and concepts in the article are erroneous, but it is being posted here without any alterations for its wonderfully historical value.

Abdu’l-Bahá, the head of a religion which is spreading over the world, is soon to visit this country. Out of the mystic Orient, out of the land of the Arabian Nights, comes this turbaned teacher to convert the New World. From the land which was old when Abraham walked the earth, from the deserts across which flitted the Wise Men two thousand years ago to worship the Bábe of Bethlehem, will now start a crusade to this the youngest of modern nations, a crusade which will tell of a new Dispensation, that the coming of the Father has been fulfilled in Bahá ‘Ullah, who was an incarnation of the deity and whose worship is destined to harmonize and unite all believers in one God.

Bahá’ísm has grown so rapidly in America that most of the big cities contain many of that faith. In Chicago they are planning to build a mighty temple to be known as Mashrak-el-askar (The Dawning Place of Mention), while in Washington many of the exclusive Smart Set are adherents. One of the most prominent of these is Mr. Charles Mason Remy, son of Admiral Remy, a young man who, in spite of his position as head of an architectural college, gives a great deal of his time to the spread of the faith, and has visited many countries as a missionary. It was to him that the Prophet recently made known his intention of visiting the capital at an early date.

While in Washington the Prophet will likely be the guest of Mrs. Christian Hemmick, better known to the world as Mrs. Barney. The Barneys were among the first American converts, Miss Laura Barney, now Mrs. Hippolyte Dreyfus of Paris, having spent many months at a time in visiting Acre, where the Prophet lived, and contributing her time and means to a spread of the faith.

The claims of the Bahá’ís are that in their faith they are working for a Universal religion, a Universal peace, a Universal brotherhood of man, a Universal language and Universal suffrage. They have no priests, no formal creed, no set form of worship; the H use of wine and tobacco is discouraged, celibacy is not approved, and woman should be treated equally with man in the matters of education and political rights.

They also say that in this new Dispensation, which is the Millenium, the Jews will find their promised Messiah; the Christians the Second Coming of Christ, the Moslems the coming of the Mahdi, the Buddhists the coming of the fifth Buddha, the Zoroastrians the coming of Shah Bahram and the Hindus the return of their Krishna.

They point to the prophecies of old as foretelling the coming of this Persian Savior, who is supposed to have at last brought to earth the Kingdom of God, and to whom the poetic Persian believers give the title, “The Light in the Lantern.”

The strange faith which this turbaned Persian will bring to us began in the year 1844, when a young man arose in the land of the Lion and the Sun and proclaimed himself a great teacher who was a forerunner of an even greater one. This John the Baptist prophet was known as the “Báb,” which is the Arabic for door or gate. He went about preaching the coming of a Savior — He Whom God Would Manifest — and while he secured many followers, he also awakened the hatred of the other sects. After preaching for six years he was martyred by Mahommedan priests in the city of Tabriz, Persia, in July, 1850.

Among the followers of the Báb was a young man, a Persian of noble birth, who was known as Bahá ‘Ullah. After the death of the Báb this man announced himself as the Messiah promised by Báb, as the Manifestation of the Deity, as the Prince of Peace foretold in the Bible, the incarnation of the Father, as Christ was of the Son.

In 1868 Bahá ‘Ullah and his followers were exiled to the city of Acre in Syria, a city which was a penal colony and a place of sand, full of fever and desolate. It lies on the Mediterranean, just north of the famed Mount Carmel, a holy land in which the coming of the Lord had been predicted. Here he lived until 1892, in which year he died peacefully and was buried in a beautiful tomb, which is still a great place of veneration among the Bahá’ís. It is this man who is believed to have been a new Christ, a direct manifestation of Divinity, and the fulfillment of the messiahship of all nations.

Abdu’l-Bahá, whom America will soon welcome, is the son of Bahá ‘Ullah and on him has fallen the mantle of his father. He is known as the centre of the Covenant and is believed to possess the spirit of God in a little less degree than his father, Bahá ‘Ullah, who is regarded as Divine.

For forty years, beginning in 1868, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá lived in the dreary prison at Acre, burying his father, from whom he inherits his mission to redeem the world. In 1908 he was released, as the fall of ‘Abdul Hamid and the proclaiming of a Turkish constitution put an end to this imprisonment, and he, with his followers, sought refuge on the green slopes of Mount Carmel, where the Christian monks pace their shady walks praying for the second coming of Christ.

This year he visited London, where he was warmly received by many of the nobility, among them Lady Bloomfield. He has also spent a few months in Paris, where there is a large colony of the faith and where Miss Laura Barney was busy writing a play in which is depicted the martyrdom of a beautiful Persian girl who was a convert. After a visit to Egypt it is expected that ‘Abdu’l-Bahá will then set sail for the New World, which he expects to bring under the sway of his faith.

In appearance he is tall, with brown skin and a snowy beard; a white turban and linen robe of the same color are his costume, this being surmounted with the gray overgarment peculiar to all high caste Persians. Around his simple cottage on the slopes of Carmel are gathered at sunset each day a band of pilgrims who listen for hours to the dignified discourse with which he entertains them.

His room is plainly furnished, his food soup and rice, which simple meal is always followed by the washing of the hands commonly in use in the East. His conversation lies in the direction of his hopes to do away with the dissensions of the different religions, to unite Jew and Gentile, Buddhist and Mahommedan, the East and the West, all under the sway of a brotherhood in which there is no creed but the good of humanity. His aim is, he says, to establish peace on earth among all men, that there shall be no law save the golden rule.

Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Anniversary Of The Establishment Of The IBC/UHJ by Dr. Leland Jensen: Sharaf 10, 176 B.E. (1/9/2020)

Thursday, January 9th, 2020

TRUE CIVILIZATION

True civilization will unfurl its banner in the midmost heart of the world whenever a certain number of its distinguished and high-minded sovereigns—the shining exemplars of devotion and determination—shall, for the good and happiness of all mankind, arise, with firm resolve and clear vision, to establish the Cause of Universal Peace. They must make the Cause of Peace the object of general consultation, and seek by every means in their power to establish a Union of the nations of the world. They must conclude a binding treaty and establish a covenant, the provisions of which shall be sound, inviolable and definite. They must proclaim it to all the world and obtain for it the sanction of all the human race. This supreme and noble undertaking—the real source of the peace and well-being of all the world—should be regarded as sacred by all that dwell on earth. All the forces of humanity must be mobilized to ensure the stability and permanence of this Most Great Covenant. In this all-embracing Pact the limits and frontiers of each and every nation should be clearly fixed, the principles underlying the relations of governments towards one another definitely laid down, and all international agreements and obligations ascertained. In like manner, the size of the armaments of every government should be strictly limited, for if the preparations for war and the military forces of any nation should be allowed to increase, they will arouse the suspicion of others. The fundamental principle underlying this solemn Pact should be so fixed that if any government later violate any one of its provisions, all the governments on earth should arise to reduce it to utter submission, nay the human race as a whole should resolve, with every power at its disposal, to destroy that government. Should this greatest of all remedies be applied to the sick body of the world, it will assuredly recover from its ills and will remain eternally safe and secure.

Observe that if such a happy situation be forthcoming, no government would need continually to pile up the weapons of war, nor feel itself obliged to produce ever new military weapons with which to conquer the human race. A small force for the purposes of internal security, the correction of criminal and disorderly elements and the prevention of local disturbances, would be required—no more. In this way the entire population would, first of all, be relieved of the crushing burden of expenditure currently imposed for military purposes, and secondly, great numbers of people would cease to devote their time to the continual devising of new weapons of destruction—those testimonials of greed and bloodthirstiness, so inconsistent with the gift of life—and would instead bend their efforts to the production of whatever will foster human existence and peace and well-being, and would become the cause of universal development and prosperity. Then every nation on earth will reign in honor, and every people will be cradled in tranquillity and content.

‘Abdu’l-Baha’, The Secret Of Divine Civilization (exc)

THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

A Universal House of Justice — with the Davidic King, the great grandson of ‘Abdu’l-Baha, as its President — is the medicine for this sick world. This body is the Supreme Institution of the Kingdom of God, established on earth as it is in heaven in fulfillment of the Lord’s Prayer that Jesus gave and told the Christians to pray for. This body, the Supreme Institution of the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven, is the Universal House of Justice that all the nations of the world will joyously and unhesitatingly belong to. The purpose of the living, functioning, descendant of King David through Baha’u’llah and Abdu’l-Baha at its head is so we can recognize Baha’u’llah’s true Universal House of Justice from fakes, frauds, and imitations. (see Isaiah chapters 2, 9, and 11) The hearts of all mankind shall willingly and eagerly turn their trust and loyalty to this world governing body, as all the people of the world shall see with their third eye opened — of their intellect — that this is the plan that God Himself has given us all for the salvation and redemption of all human kind. Already the world has seen three prototypes, or imitations, of this world Parliament. First in the World Court, secondly in the League of Nations, and third in the form of the United Nation’s Organization. These three bodies, however, failed to achieve the unifying force to unite all the peoples and nations of the world, as these failed attempts did not originate from God but from the imitation of man, they lacked the spiritual endowment of authority to unite the world together as one family, one race of humanity. This government, the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven, does not originate from the minds of men but has been delivered unto all humanity from God Almighty via the Supreme and Universal Manifestation of Himself, which is the second coming of Christ in the person of Baha’u’llah.

The world commonwealth outlined by Baha’u’llah is governed by the Universal House of Justice, this is a World Parliament freely elected by the peoples of the earth, currently in its appointed stage. It must have authority to enforce its decisions upon any dilatory or rebellious member of the commonwealth, and such action must be as swift and certain as it would be in the case of an individual who breaks the law. No such world government an succeed unless backed by the authority of the whole human race. This is the principle of unity and oneness of mankind with the complete abandonment of prejudices, on which the future of mankind depends.

This world authority must, in the interests of the whole human race, establish law in the place of war. It must strictly limit the armed forces of every nation according to their internal needs. It must plan and put into practice a world system of economics which will remove the present evils of waste, inferior quality, want in the midst of plenty. It must assume sole control over tariffs, excise, sources of raw material. It must foster a spirit of world civilization among all the people of the planet.

The president, that is the Executive Branch of the Universal House of Justice, is that promised return of the descendant of the lineage of King David, reestablished by Baha’u’llah. The office of President carries with it the right and obligation of the Executive Branch, a duty which is permitted to no one else, as defined and delineated in the sacred Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha. The Davidic King is therefore the permanent head of the Universal House of Justice, which is the executive branch of the New World Order, God’s Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven.

Together, and inseparable, the Universal House of Justice with the Davidic King, Abdu’l-Baha’s great grandson, as its President, forms the nucleus of the Kingdom of God on Earth as it is in heaven, the New World Order. As this institution has been established with its component parts, its organic institutions, and is functioning with efficiency and vigor, it is, by the unfolding of world events and the predestined Will of Omnipotent God, being projected to all the people of the world. Not by the will of man or any scheme or plan of any group of people, but by an act of Almighty Providence alone, this victory is given over to the people of God. Coinciding with great world calamity, catastrophe and social upheaval, the divine banner of the genealogy of Baha’u’llah is now being unfurled and upraised above the heads and ramparts of all the onlooking and terrified people of the world, showing the continuation of the line of David in the Executive Branch of this Universal House of Justice, which is to last forever (see Psalms 89). Such is the inescapable mind and plan of God; for by this method, world disaster and calamity contrasting the good news (gospel) of the proclamation of this Kingdom of God (Davidic), God has vouchsafed and made certain that His and only His Universal House of Justice should be asserting its claims and demonstrating its unfailing capacity to be regarded not only as the nucleus but the very pattern of the New World Order destined to embrace in the fullness of time the whole of mankind.

THE ESTABLISHER OF THE BAHA’I FAITH

“ ‘Abdu’l-Baha made a Covenant that one would come [the seventh Angel] in 1963 and would establish the Kingdom [Davidic] brought by Baha’u’llah. Also, in his Will and Testament he entered into a Covenant that a line of Guardians [Davidic Kings] would descend from him and be at the Head of the Universal House of Justice.”

THE DAVIDIC KINGSHIP

“But that same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan, Go tell my servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord [Covenant]. . . When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come from your body, and I will establish his [Solomon’s] kingdom. He shall build a house for my name and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son. When he commits iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, with the stripes of the sons of men, but I will not take my steadfast love from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away from before you. And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure for ever before me; your throne shall be established for ever.’ In accordance with all these words, and in accordance with all this vision, Nathan spoke to David”

2 Samuel 7:4, 5…12-17

Thou hast said, “I have made a Covenant with my chosen one, I have sworn to David my servant: ‘I will establish your descendants for ever,
and build your throne for all generations.’”

Psalms 89:3, 4

THE Most Great Law is come, and the Ancient Beauty ruleth upon the throne of David. Thus hath My Pen spoken that which the histories of bygone ages have related. At this time, however, David crieth aloud and saith: ‘O my loving Lord! Do Thou number me with such as have stood steadfast in Thy Cause, O Thou through Whom the faces have been illumined, and the footsteps have slipped!’

Baha’u’llah, Proclamation pg. 89-90

THE CRIMSON BOOK: BOOK OF THE COVENANT

THE BAHA’l SACRED WRITINGS flow out from the Two Central Documents of the Baha’i Revelation, the Book of the Covenant of Baha’u’llah (entitled the Kitab-i-Ahd) and the sacred Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha’, which is “THE CHARTER” of the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven (see World Order of Baha’u’llah, p. 144). All the other writings and teachings receive their life, their relevance, and their real inner spiritual force, meaning, and sustenance from out the wellspring of these two Most Mighty Documents, forming one single “scroll written (within) on the inside (the Kitab-i-Ahd) and (on the back) on the outside (the Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha’), sealed with seven seals” (Rev. 5:1 ISV).

No person can, really in good faith, even consider themselves to be a Baha’i in truth unless they can be said to have first at least read and attempted to understand, let alone believed in and been obedient and faithful to the contents and provisions of these two Documents combined together as One single Scroll. This is something similar to what Jesus said, when he said that “to eat” is to come unto him (understanding the “bread” of the teachings) and that “to drink” (the wine of the Covenant that gives life to the teachings) is to believe! (see John 6:35 KJV).

Abdu’l-Baha’ wrote the Will and Testament in three different parts at three different times. He sealed each of these parts, making three seals. On the back of the envelope where it was stuck down Abdu’l-Baha’ placed three more seals, and then on the front, where it was addressed to “the chosen branch,” he placed the seventh seal. The seven seals are thus on the outside part of this scroll, the Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha’, which was found after his passing with the Kitab-i-Ahd, the Book of the Covenant of Baha’u’llah, rolled up within.

The Kitab-i-Ahd and the Will and Testament together comprise the prophesied continuation of the everlasting Covenant given in the Bible because in His Covenant, Baha’u’llah establishes the throne of King David as the Executive Branch of His Universal House of Justice. This everlasting Covenant was begun with Adam, passed down through Abraham and David, and promised by Jesus Christ to be established in the world today, 2000 years since his birth and first appearance. Baha’u’llah is a direct descendent of the exilarchs (the exiled monarchs of King David) who were taken into captivity into Babylon and Persia (‘Iraq and Iran) the land of the birthplace of Baha’u’llah. Through His son Abdu’l-Baha’, the throne-line of David continues down to this present Day.

THE CRIMSON BOOK: BOOK OF THE COVENANT

Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Baha’i Sabbath, Sharaf 4, 176 B.E. (1/3/2020)

Saturday, January 4th, 2020

THE RULERS OF AMERICA

HEARKEN ye, O Rulers of America and the Presidents of the Republics therein, unto that which the Dove is warbling on the Branch of Eternity: There is none other God but Me, the Ever-Abiding, the Forgiving, the All-Bountiful. Adorn ye the temple of dominion with the ornament of justice and of the fear of God, and its head with the crown of the remembrance of your Lord, the Creator of the heavens. Thus counselleth you He Who is the Dayspring of Names, as bidden by Him Who is the All-Knowing, the All-Wise. The Promised One hath appeared in this glorified Station, whereat all beings, both seen and unseen, have rejoiced. Take ye advantage of the Day of God. Verily, to meet Him is better for you than all that whereon the sun shineth, could ye but know it. O concourse of rulers! Give ear unto that which hath been raised from the Dayspring of Grandeur: Verily, there is none other God but Me, the Lord of Utterance, the All-Knowing. Bind ye the broken with the hands of justice, and crush the oppressor who flourisheth with the rod of the commandments of your Lord, the Ordainer, the All-Wise.

Baha’u’llah-The Proclamation of

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GLOBAL FEDERAL UNION

Question: Is it not a fact that universal peace cannot be accomplished until there is political democracy in all the countries of the world?

Answer: It is very evident that in the future there shall be no centralization in the countries of the world, be they constitutional in government, republican or democratic in form. The United States may be held up as the example of future government—that is to say, each province will be independent in itself, but there will be federal union protecting the interests of the various independent states. It may not be a republican or a democratic form. To cast aside centralization which promotes despotism is the exigency of the time. This will be productive of international peace. Another fact of equal importance in bringing about international peace is woman’s suffrage. That is to say, when perfect equality shall be established between men and women, peace may be realized for the simple reason that womankind in general will never favor warfare. Women will not be willing to allow those whom they have so tenderly cared for to go to the battlefield. When they shall have a vote, they will oppose any cause of warfare. Another factor which will bring about universal peace is the linking together of the Orient and the Occident.

Abdu’l-Baha’, The Promulgation Of Universal Peace-6/2/1912

THOSE ELECTED TO PUBLIC SERVICE

Those persons who are selected to serve the public, or are appointed to administrative positions, should perform their duties in a spirit of true servitude and ready compliance. That is to say, they should be distinguished by their goodly disposition and virtuous character, content themselves with their allotted remuneration, and act with trustworthiness in all their doings. They should keep themselves aloof from unworthy motives, and be far removed above covetous designs; for rectitude, probity and righteousness are among the most potent means for attracting the grace of God and securing both the prosperity of the country and the welfare of the people. Glory and honour for man are not to be found in fortunes and riches, least of all in those which have been unlawfully amassed through extortion, embezzlement and corruption practised at the expense of an exploited populace.

Abdu’l-Baha’

*****

AMERICA IN PERIL

The American nation…stands, indeed, from whichever angle one observes its immediate fortunes, in grave peril. The woes and tribulations which threaten it are partly avoidable, but mostly inevitable and God-sent, for by reason of them a government and people clinging tenaciously to the obsolescent doctrine of absolute sovereignty and upholding a political system, manifestly at variance with the needs of a world already contracted into a neighborhood and crying out for unity, will find itself purged of its anachronistic conceptions, and prepared to play a preponderating role, as foretold by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, in the hoisting of the standard of the Lesser Peace, in the unification of mankind, and in the establishment of a world federal government on this planet. These same fiery tribulations will not only firmly weld the American nation to its sister nations in both hemispheres, but will through their cleansing effect, purge it thoroughly of the accumulated dross which ingrained racial prejudice, rampant materialism, widespread ungodliness and moral laxity have combined, in the course of successive generations, to produce, and which have prevented her thus far from assuming the role of world spiritual leadership forecast by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s unerring pen—a role which she is bound to fulfill through travail and sorrow.

Shoghi Effendi, Citadel of Faith

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The BAHA’I FAITH and the SEPARATION of CHURCH and STATE

The calamities of current events are the forces of God propelling the world closer and closer to the time of the Most Great Justice, and the Most Great Peace that shall be laid down upon that foundation. “Peace on earth without Justice is tyranny”. Therefore the establishment of the Most Great Justice is the paramount forerunner for truly universal, international peace.

Part of the problem regarding this issue is the lack of understanding amongst the people of the key issues involved. These issues are divided into the religious and political realms.

These are the two topics: politics and religion, that are not to be discussed in “polite” society here in the United States. Yet these two issues are the most important fundamental social issues that should be discussed by the people. Thus there exists an oppression upon the American people in particular and the people of the world in general, forbidding them to discuss either politics or religion, and that is, to discuss these things where cool heads prevail and with critical thinking, intellectual investigation and the agreement on the facts. Instead these twin issues have been obfuscated by high emotionality, opinion, speculation, propaganda and antics. Thus the people have been deprived of a Forum for this venue.

The Baha’i Faith is a truly all INCLUSIVE UNORGANIZED RELIGION, and the Kingdom of God is the government from God that is respectful of all the diversity of mankind. This is a difficult and abstruse issue to understand and should be meditated upon profoundly by all the people. This is the subject: that God has revealed an “unorganized religion” for His Kingdom, which in effect separates “spiritual matters” which are NOT to be organized, from matters of State.

UNDER THE PROTECTION OF GOD

Had the Shi’i realized that Baha’u’llah and ‘Abdu’l-Baha, during their lifetimes, were seated upon the throne of King David (as did Omar and Ali, the second and fourth Caliphs, recognize the living Davidic King exilarch Bostanai in their day) Persia would be the world leader now instead of America. But the throne of David came into exile here in America. And no matter how inept, foolish or adept American policy may or may not be it is UNDER THE PROTECTION OF GOD. Had the Israelis protected ‘Abdu’l-Baha’s son (an aghsan) Mason Remey from the “Hands”–instead of exiling him from the Holy Land–Israel would be the world leader, instead of the world loser it is today. When Israel under King Saul rejected King David (and exiled him) it was Palestine that took him in, and became the world leader in that time. Whatever people recognizes and protects the throne of King David and the basic human rights of the living one seated upon that throne in that day and age will be exalted, and its nation preserved and its peoples protected both materially and spiritually. Should they violate basic human rights, become an arrogant abomination of worthless consumption, or be hijacked by corrupt leadership God Himself shall depose them–through unforeseen world events–and those who oppose this mighty Covenant of God will be dispersed and degraded–like the Ottoman and Persian Empires that are no more who failed to recognize Baha’u’llah and ‘Abdu’l-Baha in their own lifetimes. Like that of Rome which opposed Christ and is gone. Like that of Hitler who sought to kill off all the Jewish people including the heir to the throne of David by exterminating an entire peoples–and now that empire is nothing.

But these worldly affairs mean nothing in the sight of those whose hearts are pure, whose minds are elevated upon the love of God, and whose souls are set free.

Neal Chase, excs.fr. Chinvat

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

 

Baha’i Month: Sharaf/Honor 1, 176 B.E. (12/31/2019)

Wednesday, January 1st, 2020

You have written on the question of how the friends should proceed in their business dealings with one another. This is a question of the greatest importance and a matter that deserveth the liveliest concern. In relations of this kind, the friends of God should act with the utmost trustworthiness and integrity. To be remiss in this area would be to turn one’s face away from the counsels of the Blessed Beauty and the holy precepts of God. If a man in his own home doth not treat his relations and friends with entire trustworthiness and integrity, his dealings with the outside world–no matter how much trustworthiness and honesty he may bring to them–will prove barren and unproductive. First one should order one’s own domestic affairs, then attend to one’s business with the public. One should certainly not argue that the friends need not be treated with undue care, or that it is unnecessary for them to attach too great importance to the practice of trustworthiness in their dealings with one another, but that it is in their relations with strangers that correct behaviour is essential. Talk like this is sheer fantasy and will lead to detriment and loss. Blessed be the soul that shineth with the light of trustworthiness among the people and becometh a sign of perfection amidst all men.

Abdu’l-Baha’ excerpt from a tablet on Trustworthiness

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles