In reading over sections 1 and 2, I generated a few questions. I tell
ya, if the depth of these first two sections is maintained throughout
the document (which I suspect it will be), I'm in trouble. Already I've
been "forced" to pull out the dictionary, a history book, Century of
Light, and re-read eight other documents, and wish I had a copy of The
Secret of Divine Civilization -- and that's just on the first
read-through!! Anyway, the questions helped guide me to some really
cool insights from other documents, so in the spirit of fellowship, I
share them with you (though really, they're probably most useful to me).
¶1 - What IS Baha'u'llah's message?
¶2 - What are the basic elements of a "materialistic interpretation of
reality" and a "Newtonian view of the world"?
¶3 - How does the reference to "The universal civilization" relate to
the "westernization" of the world that had marked the past 400 years or so?
¶4 - What was the impact of the "ideological revolution" on Christianity
in the west?
¶5 - Was there a period of "enlightened religion" preceding the
re-emergence of old dogma and conflict OR just a vacuum?
¶6 - The use of the analogy of "poles" seems somewhat judgemental, or is
that just my interpretation?
¶7 - (ahhh... there's the unifying side of ¶6 observation) : - )
¶8 - Do we find elements of "totalitarian control" in western societies
¶9 - What is meant by "modernization"? How does it relate to economic
self-interest and bringing about a just society?
¶10 - Was "narrowing the gap" the true intention of SED, or just an
idealistic motive that we were convinced of to justify materialistic
actions? (sorry, little bit of "conspiracy theory" coming out of me
¶11 - Did civilization take a detour, or is this "release" merely a
re-birth in the cyclical process of human development?
I plan to re-read the sections, and my notes from the additional
research they caused, and formulate some reflections that I will share
hopefully in a few days.
I commend to you one of the "additional research" items - an article one
of our very own study participants authored on materialism and
"Consumption" (Nathan, I hope you don't mind). ENJOY!!