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Unity Postscript 1949 - [Ennobling]

˙ūThis excerpt from <a href="../cwsa-25-the-human-cycle/">The Ideal of Human Unity</a>, page 579

A Postscript Chapter
AT THE time when this book was being brought to its close, the first attempt at the foundation of some initial hesitating beginning of the new world-order, which both governments and peoples had begun to envisage as a permanent necessity if there was to be any order in the world at all, was under debate and consideration but had not yet been given a concrete and practical form; but this had to come and eventually a momentous beginning was made. It took the name and appearance of what was called a League of Nations. It was not happy in its conception, well-inspired in its formation or destined to any considerable longevity or a supremely successful career. But that such an organised endeavour should be launched at all and proceed on its way for some time without an early
breakdown was in itself an event of capital importance and meant the initiation of a new era in world history; especially, it was an initiative which, even if it failed, could not be allowed to remain without a sequel but had to be taken up again until a successful solution has safeguarded the future of mankind, not only against continued disorder and lethal peril but against destructive possibilities which could easily prepare the collapse of civilisation and perhaps eventually something even that could be described as the suicide of the human race. Accordingly, the

League of Nations disappeared but was replaced by the United
Nations Organisation which now stands in the forefront of the
world and struggles towards some kind of secure permanence
and success in the great and far-reaching endeavour on which
depends the world s future.
This is the capital event, the crucial and decisive outcome
of the world-wide tendencies which Nature has set in motion
for her destined purpose. In spite of the constant shortcomings
of human effort and its stumbling mentality, in spite of adverse
580 The Ideal of Human Unity
possibilities that may baulk or delay for a time the success of
this great adventure, it is in this event that lies the determination
of what must be. All the catastrophes that have attended this
course of events and seem to arise of purpose in order to prevent
the working out of her intention have not prevented, and even
further catastrophes will not prevent, the successful emergence
and development of an enterprise which has become a necessity
for the progress and perhaps the very existence of the race. Two
stupendous and world-devastating wars have swept over the
globe and have been accompanied or followed by revolutions
with far-reaching consequences which have altered the political
map of the earth and the international balance, the once fairly
stable equilibrium of five continents, and changed the whole
future. A third still more disastrous war with a prospect of
the use of weapons and other scientific means of destruction
far more fatal and of wider reach than any ever yet invented,
weapons whose far-spread use might bring down civilisation
with a crash and whose effects might tend towards something
like extermination on a large scale, looms in prospect; the constant apprehension of it weighs upon the mind of the nations
and stimulates them towards further preparations for war and
creates an atmosphere of prolonged antagonism, if not yet of
conflict, extending to what is called  cold war even in times
of peace. But the two wars that have come and gone have not
prevented the formation of the first and second considerable
efforts towards the beginning of an attempt at union and the
practical formation of a concrete body, an organised instrument
with that object: rather they have caused and hastened this new
creation. The League of Nations came into being as a direct
consequence of the first war, the U.N.O. similarly as a consequence of the second world-wide conflict. If the third war which
is regarded by many if not by most as inevitable does come, it
is likely to precipitate as inevitably a further step and perhaps
the final outcome of this great world-endeavour. Nature uses
such means, apparently opposed and dangerous to her intended
purpose, to bring about the fruition of that purpose. As in the
practice of the spiritual science and art of Yoga one has to raise
A Postscript Chapter 581
up the psychological possibilities which are there in the nature
and stand in the way of its spiritual perfection and fulfilment so
as to eliminate them, even, it may be, the sleeping possibilities
which might arise in future to break the work that has been
done, so too Nature acts with the world-forces that meet her
on her way, not only calling up those which will assist her but
raising too, so as to finish with them, those that she knows to
be the normal or even the unavoidable obstacles which cannot
but start up to impede her secret will. This one has often seen
in the history of mankind; one sees it exampled today with an
enormous force commensurable with the magnitude of the thing
that has to be done. But always these resistances turn out to have
assisted by the resistance much more than they have impeded
the intention of the great Creatrix and her Mover.
We may then look with a legitimate optimism on what has
been hitherto achieved and on the prospects of further achievement in the future. This optimism need not and should not blind
us to undesirable features, perilous tendencies and the possibilities of serious interruptions in the work and even disorders in
the human world that might possibly subvert the work done.
As regards the actual conditions of the moment it may even be
admitted that most men nowadays look with dissatisfaction on
the defects of the United Nations Organisation and its blunders
and the malignancies that endanger its existence and many feel
a growing pessimism and regard with doubt the possibility of
its final success. This pessimism it is unnecessary and unwise to
share; for such a psychology tends to bring about or to make
possible the results which it predicts but which need not at all
ensue. At the same time, we must not ignore the danger. The
leaders of the nations, who have the will to succeed and who
will be held responsible by posterity for any avoidable failure,
must be on guard against unwise policies or fatal errors; the
deficiencies that exist in the organisation or its constitution have
to be quickly remedied or slowly and cautiously eliminated; if
there are obstinate oppositions to necessary change, they have
somehow to be overcome or circumvented without breaking the
institution; progress towards its perfection, even if it cannot be
582 The Ideal of Human Unity
easily or swiftly made, must yet be undertaken and the frustration of the world s hope prevented at any cost. There is no other
way for mankind than this, unless indeed a greater way is laid
open to it by the Power that guides through some delivering
turn or change in human will or human nature or some sudden
evolutionary progress, a not easily foreseeable leap, saltus, which
will make another and greater solution of our human destiny
feasible.
In the first idea and form of a beginning of world-union
which took the shape of the League of Nations, although there
were errors in the structure such as the insistence on unanimity
which tended to sterilise, to limit or to obstruct the practical
action and effectuality of the League, the main defect was inherent in its conception and in its general build, and that again
arose naturally and as a direct consequence from the condition
of the world at that time. The League of Nations was in fact
an oligarchy of big Powers each drawing behind it a retinue of
small States and using the general body so far as possible for
the furtherance of its own policy much more than for the general interest and the good of the world at large. This character
came out most in the political sphere, and the manoeuvres and
discords, accommodations and compromises inevitable in this
condition of things did not help to make the action of the League
beneficial or effective as it purposed or set out to be. The absence
of America and the position of Russia had helped to make the
final ill-success of this first venture a natural consequence, if
not indeed unavoidable. In the constitution of the U.N.O. an
attempt was made, in principle at least, to escape from these errors; but the attempt was not thoroughgoing and not altogether
successful. A strong surviving element of oligarchy remained in
the preponderant place assigned to the five great Powers in the
Security Council and was clinched by the device of the veto;
these were concessions to a sense of realism and the necessity of
recognising the actual condition of things and the results of the
second great war and could not perhaps have been avoided, but
they have done more to create trouble, hamper the action and
diminish the success of the new institution than anything else in
A Postscript Chapter 583
its make-up or the way of action forced upon it by the world
situation or the difficulties of a combined working inherent in
its very structure. A too hasty or radical endeavour to get rid of
these defects might lead to a crash of the whole edifice; to leave
them unmodified prolongs a malaise, an absence of harmony
and smooth working and a consequent discredit and a sense of
limited and abortive action, cause of the wide-spread feeling of
futility and regard of doubt the world at large has begun to cast
on this great and necessary institution which was founded with
such high hopes and without which world conditions would be
infinitely worse and more dangerous, even perhaps irremediable. A third attempt, the substitution of a differently constituted
body, could only come if this institution collapsed as the result
of a new catastrophe: if certain dubious portents fulfil their
menace, it might emerge into being and might even this time
be more successful because of an increased and a more general
determination not to allow such a calamity to occur again; but
it would be after a third cataclysmal struggle which might shake
to its foundations the international structure now holding together after two upheavals with so much difficulty and unease.
Yet, even in such a contingency, the intention in the working of
Nature is likely to overcome the obstacles she has herself raised
up and they may be got rid of once and for all. But for that
it will be necessary to build, eventually at least, a true WorldState without exclusions and on a principle of equality into
which considerations of size and strength will not enter. These
may be left to exercise whatever influence is natural to them in a
well-ordered harmony of the world s peoples safeguarded by the
law of a new international order. A sure justice, a fundamental
equality and combination of rights and interests must be the law
of this World-State and the basis of its entire edifice.
The real danger at the present second stage of the progress
towards unity lies not in any faults, however serious, in the
building of the United Nations Assembly but in the division
of the peoples into two camps which tend to be natural opponents and might at any moment become declared enemies
irreconcilable and even their common existence incompatible.
584 The Ideal of Human Unity
This is because the so-called Communism of Bolshevist Russia
came to birth as the result, not of a rapid evolution, but of
an unprecedentedly fierce and prolonged revolution sanguinary
in the extreme and created an autocratic and intolerant State
system founded upon a war of classes in which all others except
the proletariat were crushed out of existence,  liquidated , upon
a  dictatorship of the proletariat or rather of a narrow but allpowerful party system acting in its name, a Police State, and
a mortal struggle with the outside world: the fierceness of this
struggle generated in the minds of the organisers of the new
State a fixed idea of the necessity not only of survival but of
continued struggle and the spread of its domination until the
new order had destroyed the old or evicted it, if not from the
whole earth, yet from the greater part of it and the imposition
of a new political and social gospel or its general acceptance by
the world s peoples. But this condition of things might change,
lose its acrimony and full consequence, as it has done to some
degree, with the arrival of security and the cessation of the first
ferocity, bitterness and exasperation of the conflict; the most
intolerant and oppressive elements of the new order might have
been moderated and the sense of incompatibility or inability to
live together or side by side would then have disappeared and a
more secure modus vivendi been made possible. If much of the
unease, the sense of inevitable struggle, the difficulty of mutual
toleration and economic accommodation still exists, it is rather
because the idea of using the ideological struggle as a means
for world domination is there and keeps the nations in a position of mutual apprehension and preparation for armed defence
and attack than because the coexistence of the two ideologies
is impossible. If this element is eliminated, a world in which
these two ideologies could live together, arrive at an economic
interchange, draw closer together, need not be at all out of the
question; for the world is moving towards a greater development
of the principle of State control over the life of the community,
and a congeries of socialistic States on the one hand, and on
the other, of States coordinating and controlling a modified
Capitalism might well come to exist side by side and develop
A Postscript Chapter 585
friendly relations with each other. Even a World-State in which
both could keep their own institutions and sit in a common
assembly might come into being and a single world-union on
this foundation would not be impossible. This development is
indeed the final outcome which the foundation of the U.N.O.
presupposes; for the present organisation cannot be itself final, it
is only an imperfect beginning useful and necessary as a primary
nucleus of that larger institution in which all the peoples of the
earth can meet each other in a single international unity: the
creation of a World-State is, in a movement of this kind, the one
logical and inevitable ultimate outcome.
This view of the future may under present circumstances be
stigmatised as a too facile optimism, but this turn of things is
quite as possible as the more disastrous turn expected by the
pessimists, since the cataclysm and crash of civilisation sometimes predicted by them need not at all be the result of a new
war. Mankind has a habit of surviving the worst catastrophes
created by its own errors or by the violent turns of Nature
and it must be so if there is any meaning in its existence, if
its long history and continuous survival is not the accident of a
fortuitously self-organising Chance, which it must be in a purely
materialistic view of the nature of the world. If man is intended
to survive and carry forward the evolution of which he is at
present the head and, to some extent, a half-conscious leader of
its march, he must come out of his present chaotic international
life and arrive at a beginning of organised united action; some
kind of World-State, unitary or federal, or a confederacy or
a coalition he must arrive at in the end; no smaller or looser
expedient would adequately serve the purpose. In that case, the
general thesis advanced in this book would stand justified and we
can foreshadow with some confidence the main line of advance
which the course of events is likely to take, at least the main
trend of the future history of the human peoples.
The question now put by evolving Nature to mankind is
whether its existing international system, if system it can be
called, a sort of provisional order maintained with constant
evolutionary or revolutionary changes, cannot be replaced by
586 The Ideal of Human Unity
a willed and thought-out fixed arrangement, a true system,
eventually a real unity serving all the common interests of the
earth s peoples. An original welter and chaos with its jumble
of forces forming, wherever it could, larger or smaller masses
of civilisation and order which were in danger of crumbling
or being shaken to pieces by attacks from the outer chaos was
the first attempt at cosmos successfully arrived at by the genius
of humanity. This was finally replaced by something like an
international system with the elements of what could be called
international law or fixed habits of intercommunication and
interchange which allowed the nations to live together in spite
of antagonisms and conflicts, a security alternating with precariousness and peril and permitting of too many ugly features,
however local, of oppression, bloodshed, revolt and disorder,
not to speak of wars which sometimes devastated large areas of
the globe. The indwelling deity who presides over the destiny of
the race has raised in man s mind and heart the idea, the hope
of a new order which will replace the old unsatisfactory order
and substitute for it conditions of the world s life which will
in the end have a reasonable chance of establishing permanent
peace and well-being. This would for the first time turn into an
assured fact the ideal of human unity which, cherished by a few,
seemed for so long a noble chimera; then might be created a
firm ground of peace and harmony and even a free room for the
realisation of the highest human dreams, for the perfectibility
of the race, a perfect society, a higher upward evolution of
the human soul and human nature. It is for the men of our
day and, at the most, of tomorrow to give the answer. For, too
long a postponement or too continued a failure will open the
way to a series of increasing catastrophes which might create
a too prolonged and disastrous confusion and chaos and render a solution too difficult or impossible; it might even end in
something like an irremediable crash not only of the present
world-civilisation but of all civilisation. A new, a difficult and
uncertain beginning might have to be made in the midst of the
chaos and ruin after perhaps an extermination on a large scale,
and a more successful creation could be predicted only if a way
A Postscript Chapter 587
was found to develop a better humanity or perhaps a greater, a
superhuman race.
The central question is whether the nation, the largest natural unit which humanity has been able to create and maintain for
its collective living, is also its last and ultimate unit or whether
a greater aggregate can be formed which will englobe many
and even most nations and finally all in its united totality. The
impulse to build more largely, the push towards the creation of
considerable and even very vast supra-national aggregates has
not been wanting; it has even been a permanent feature in the
life-instincts of the race. But the form it took was the desire of
a strong nation for mastery over others, permanent possession
of their territories, subjugation of their peoples, exploitation of
their resources: there was also an attempt at quasi-assimilation,
an imposition of the culture of a dominant race and, in general,
a system of absorption wholesale or as complete as possible.
The Roman Empire was the classic example of this kind of
endeavour and the Graeco-Roman unity of a single way of life
and culture in a vast framework of political and administrative
unity was the nearest approach within the geographical limits
reached by this civilisation to something one might regard as
a first figure or an incomplete suggestion of a figure of human
unity. Other similar attempts have been made though not on
so large a scale and with a less consummate ability throughout
the course of history, but nothing has endured for more than a
small number of centuries. The method used was fundamentally
unsound in as much as it contradicted other life-instincts which
were necessary to the vitality and healthy evolution of mankind
and the denial of which must end in some kind of stagnation
and arrested progress. The imperial aggregate could not acquire
the unconquerable vitality and power of survival of the nationunit. The only enduring empire-units have been in reality large
nation-units which took that name like Germany and China
and these were not forms of the supra-national State and need
not be reckoned in the history of the formation of the imperial
aggregate. So, although the tendency to the creation of empire
testifies to an urge in Nature towards larger unities of human
588 The Ideal of Human Unity
life,  and we can see concealed in it a will to unite the disparate
masses of humanity on a larger scale into a single coalescing or
combined life-unit,  it must be regarded as an unsuccessful
formation without a sequel and unserviceable for any further
progress in this direction. In actual fact a new attempt of worldwide domination could succeed only by a new instrumentation
or under novel circumstances in englobing all the nations of the
earth or persuading or forcing them into some kind of union.
An ideology, a successful combination of peoples with one aim
and a powerful head like Communist Russia, might have a temporary success in bringing about such an objective. But such
an outcome, not very desirable in itself, would not be likely to
ensure the creation of an enduring World-State. There would be
tendencies, resistances, urges towards other developments which
would sooner or later bring about its collapse or some revolutionary change which would mean its disappearance. Finally,
any such stage would have to be overpassed; only the formation
of a true World-State, either of a unitary but still elastic kind,
 for a rigidly unitary State might bring about stagnation and
decay of the springs of life,  or a union of free peoples could
open the prospect of a sound and lasting world-order.
It is not necessary to repeat or review, except in certain
directions, the considerations and conclusions set forward in
this book with regard to the means and methods or the lines of
divergence or successive development which the actual realisation of human unity may take. But still on some sides possibilities
have arisen which call for some modification of what has been
written or the conclusions arrived at in these chapters. It had
been concluded, for instance, that there was no likelihood of
the conquest and unification of the world by a single dominant
people or empire. This is no longer altogether so certain, for we
have just had to admit the possibility of such an attempt under
certain circumstances. A dominant Power may be able to group
round itself strong allies subordinated to it but still considerable
in strength and resources and throw them into a world struggle with other Powers and peoples. This possibility would be
increased if the dominating Power managed to procure, even if
A Postscript Chapter 589
only for the time being, a monopoly of an overwhelming superiority in the use of some of the tremendous means of aggressive
military action which Science has set out to discover and effectively utilise. The terror of destruction and even of large-scale
extermination created by these ominous discoveries may bring
about a will in the governments and peoples to ban and prevent
the military use of these inventions, but, so long as the nature
of mankind has not changed, this prevention must remain uncertain and precarious and an unscrupulous ambition may even
get by it a chance of secrecy and surprise and the utilisation
of a decisive moment which might conceivably give it victory
and it might risk the tremendous chance. It may be argued that
the history of the last war runs counter to this possibility, for
in conditions not quite realising but approximating to such a
combination of circumstances the aggressive Powers failed in
their attempt and underwent the disastrous consequences of a
terrible defeat. But after all, they came for a time within a hair s
breadth of success and there might not be the same good fortune
for the world in some later and more sagaciously conducted and
organised adventure. At least, the possibility has to be noted and
guarded against by those who have the power of prevention and
the welfare of the race in their charge.
One of the possibilities suggested at the time was the growth
of continental agglomerates, a united Europe, some kind of a
combine of the peoples of the American continent under the
leadership of the United States, even possibly in the resurgence
of Asia and its drive towards independence from the dominance
of the European peoples, a drawing together for self-defensive
combination of the nations of this continent; such an eventuality
of large continental combinations might even be a stage in the
final formation of a world-union. This possibility has tended to
take shape to a certain extent with a celerity that could not then
be anticipated. In the two American continents it has actually
assumed a predominating and practical form, though not in its
totality. The idea of a United States of Europe has also actually
taken shape and is assuming a formal existence, but is not yet
able to develop into a completed and fully realised possibility
590 The Ideal of Human Unity
because of the antagonism based on conflicting ideologies which
cuts off from each other Russia and her satellites behind their
iron curtain and Western Europe. This separation has gone so
far that it is difficult to envisage its cessation at any foreseeable time in a predictable future. Under other circumstances
a tendency towards such combinations might have created the
apprehension of huge continental clashes such as the collision,
at one time imagined as possible, between a resurgent Asia and
the Occident. The acceptance by Europe and America of the
Asiatic resurgence and the eventual total liberation of the Oriental peoples, as also the downfall of Japan which figured at
one time and indeed actually presented itself to the world as
the liberator and leader of a free Asia against the domination of
the West, have removed this dangerous possibility. Here again,
as elsewhere, the actual danger presents itself rather as a clash
between two opposing ideologies, one led by Russia and Red
China and trying to impose the Communistic extreme partly by
military and partly by forceful political means on a reluctant
or at least an infected but not altogether willing Asia and Europe, and on the other side a combination of peoples, partly
capitalist, partly moderate socialist who still cling with some
attachment to the idea of liberty,  to freedom of thought and
some remnant of the free life of the individual. In America there
seems to be a push, especially in the Latin peoples, towards
a rather intolerant completeness of the Americanisation of the
whole continent and the adjacent islands, a sort of extended
Monroe Doctrine, which might create friction with the European Powers still holding possessions in the northern part of the
continent. But this could only generate minor difficulties and
disagreements and not the possibility of any serious collision, a
case perhaps for arbitration or arrangement by the U.N.O., not
any more serious consequence. In Asia a more perilous situation
has arisen, standing sharply across the way to any possibility
of a continental unity of the peoples of this part of the world,
in the emergence of Communist China. This creates a gigantic
bloc which could easily englobe the whole of Northern Asia
in a combination between two enormous Communist Powers,
A Postscript Chapter 591
Russia and China, and would overshadow with a threat of absorption South-Western Asia and Tibet and might be pushed
to overrun all up to the whole frontier of India, menacing her
security and that of Western Asia with the possibility of an
invasion and an overrunning and subjection by penetration or
even by overwhelming military force to an unwanted ideology,
political and social institutions and dominance of this militant
mass of Communism whose push might easily prove irresistible.
In any case, the continent would be divided between two huge
blocs which might enter into active mutual opposition and the
possibility of a stupendous world-conflict would arise dwarfing
anything previously experienced: the possibility of any worldunion might, even without any actual outbreak of hostilities,
be indefinitely postponed by the incompatibility of interests and
ideologies on a scale which would render their inclusion in a
single body hardly realisable. The possibility of a coming into
being of three or four continental unions, which might subsequently coalesce into a single unity, would then be very remote
and, except after a world-shaking struggle, hardly feasible.
At one time it was possible to regard as an eventual possibility the extension of Socialism to all the nations; an international
unity could then have been created by its innate tendencies
which turned naturally towards an overcoming of the dividing
force of the nation-idea with its separatism and its turn towards
competitions and rivalries often culminating in open strife; this
could have been regarded as the natural road and could have
turned in fact into the eventual way towards world-union. But,
in the first place, Socialism has under certain stresses proved
to be by no means immune against infection by the dividing
national spirit and its international tendency might not survive
its coming into power in separate national States and a resulting
inheritance of competing national interests and necessities: the
old spirit might very well survive in the new socialist bodies.
But also there might not be or not for a long time to come an
inevitable tide of the spread of Socialism to all the peoples of the
earth: other forces might arise which would dispute what seemed
at one time and perhaps still seems the most likely outcome of
592 The Ideal of Human Unity
existing world tendencies; the conflict between Communism and
the less extreme socialistic idea which still respects the principle
of liberty, even though a restricted liberty, and the freedom of
conscience, of thought, of personality of the individual, if this
difference perpetuated itself, might create a serious difficulty in
the formation of a World-State. It would not be easy to build a
constitution, a harmonised State-law and practice in which any
modicum of genuine freedom for the individual or any continued
existence of him except as a cell in the working of a rigidly
determined automatism of the body of the collectivist State or a
part of a machine would be possible or conceivable. It is not that
the principle of Communism necessitates any such results or that
its system must lead to a termite civilisation or the suppression
of the individual; it could well be, on the contrary, a means at
once of the fulfilment of the individual and the perfect harmony
of a collective being. The already developed systems which go
by the name are not really Communism but constructions of
an inordinately rigid State Socialism. But Socialism itself might
well develop away from the Marxist groove and evolve less
rigid modes; a cooperative Socialism, for instance, without any
bureaucratic rigour of a coercive administration, of a Police
State, might one day come into existence, but the generalisation
of Socialism throughout the world is not under existing circumstances easily foreseeable, hardly even a predominant possibility:
in spite of certain possibilities or tendencies created by recent
events in the Far East, a division of the earth between the two
systems, capitalistic and socialistic, seems for the present a more
likely issue. In America the attachment to individualism and the
capitalistic system of society and a strong antagonism not only
to Communism but to even a moderate Socialism remains complete and one can foresee little possibility of any abatement in
its intensity. The extreme success of Communism creeping over
the continents of the Old World, which we have had to envisage
as a possibility, is yet, if we consider existing circumstances and
the balance of opposing Powers, highly improbable and, even
if it occurred, some accommodation would still be necessary,
unless one of the two forces gained an overwhelming eventual
A Postscript Chapter 593
victory over its opponent. A successful accommodation would
demand the creation of a body in which all questions of possible
dispute could be solved as they arose without any breaking out
of open conflict, and this would be a successor of the League
of Nations and the U.N.O. and move in the same direction. As
Russia and America, in spite of the constant opposition of policy
and ideology, have avoided so far any step that would make the
preservation of the U.N.O. too difficult or impossible, this third
body would be preserved by the same necessity or imperative
utility of its continued existence. The same forces would work
in the same direction and a creation of an effective world-union
would still be possible; in the end the mass of general needs of
the race and its need of self-preservation could well be relied on
to make it inevitable.
There is nothing then in the development of events since
the establishment of the United Nations Organisation, in the
sequel to the great initiation at San Francisco of the decisive
step towards the creation of a world-body which might end in
the establishment of a true world-unity, that need discourage us
in the expectation of an ultimate success of this great enterprise.
There are dangers and difficulties, there can be an apprehension
of conflicts, even of colossal conflicts that might jeopardise the
future, but total failure need not be envisaged unless we are
disposed to predict the failure of the race. The thesis we have
undertaken to establish of the drive of Nature towards larger
agglomerations and the final establishment of the largest of all
and the ultimate union of the world s peoples still remains unaltered: this is evidently the line which the future of the human
race demands and which conflicts and perturbations, however
immense, may delay, even as they may modify greatly the forms it
now promises to take, but are not likely to prevent; for a general
destruction would be the only alternative destiny of mankind.
But such a destruction, whatever the catastrophic possibilities
balancing the almost certain beneficial results, hardly limitable in
their extent, of the recent discoveries and inventions of Science,
has every chance of being as chimerical as any early expectation
of final peace and felicity or a perfected society of the human
594 The Ideal of Human Unity
peoples. We may rely, if on nothing else, on the evolutionary
urge and, if on no other greater hidden Power, on the manifest
working and drift or intention in the World-Energy we call Nature to carry mankind at least as far as the necessary next step
to be taken, a self-preserving next step: for the necessity is there,
at least some general recognition of it has been achieved and
of the thing to which it must eventually lead the idea has been
born and the body of it is already calling for its creation. We
have indicated in this book the conditions, possibilities, forms
which this new creation may take and those which seem to be
most desirable without dogmatising or giving prominence to
personal opinion; an impartial consideration of the forces that
work and the results that are likely to ensue was the object of
this study. The rest will depend on the intellectual and moral
capacity of humanity to carry out what is evidently now the one
thing needful.
We conclude then that in the conditions of the world at
present, even taking into consideration its most disparaging
features and dangerous possibilities, there is nothing that need
alter the view we have taken of the necessity and inevitability of
some kind of world-union; the drive of Nature, the compulsion
of circumstances and the present and future need of mankind
make it inevitable. The general conclusions we have arrived at
will stand and the consideration of the modalities and possible
forms or lines of alternative or successive development it may
take. The ultimate result must be the formation of a WorldState and the most desirable form of it would be a federation
of free nationalities in which all subjection or forced inequality
and subordination of one to another would have disappeared
and, though some might preserve a greater natural influence,
all would have an equal status. A confederacy would give the
greatest freedom to the nations constituting the World-State,
but this might give too much room for fissiparous or centrifugal
tendencies to operate; a federal order would then be the most
desirable. All else would be determined by the course of events
and by general agreement or the shape given by the ideas and
necessities that may grow up in the future. A world-union of this
A Postscript Chapter 595
kind would have the greatest chances of long survival or permanent existence. This is a mutable world and uncertainties and
dangers might assail or trouble for a time; the formed structure
might be subjected to revolutionary tendencies as new ideas and
forces emerged and produced their effect on the general mind
of humanity, but the essential step would have been taken and
the future of the race assured or at least the present era overpassed in which it is threatened and disturbed by unsolved needs
and difficulties, precarious conditions, immense upheavals, huge
and sanguinary world-wide conflicts and the threat of others to
come. The ideal of human unity would be no longer an unfulfilled ideal but an accomplished fact and its preservation given
into the charge of the united human peoples. Its future destiny
would lie on the knees of the gods and, if the gods have a use
for the continued existence of the race, may be left to lie there
safe.