WHAT IS WRONG WITH POLITICS? BASES FOR A TRUE DEMOCRACY
(O Que Há de Errado Com a Política? Fundamentos para uma Verdadeira Democracia)
Note for the current version (for the Internet): At the moment, this is the fundational work on Humanitarianism. In its chapters, the bases of social philosophy called Humanitarianism are exposed, albeit synthetically. The work is being revised. Chapter 9 of the original edition was removed because it deals specifically with the Humanitarian Society in Brazil, which had its activities ended several years ago. In place of this chapter, some annexes are being prepared that will deal with Humanitarianism in its present stage of development, as a philosophy and as a social movement.
What Is Wrong With Politics? Bases for a True Democracy
Present Editon with Several Revised Chapters and Future Annexes:
What Is Wrong With Politics? Bases for a True Democray
3º edition, being revised and translated, published in the Internet: 2020.
First and Second Editions (in Portuguese language):
O Que Há de Errado Com a Política?
1º edition, edited by SHB (Sociedade Humanitarista no Brasil) Porto Alegre, 1994. 107 pp.
O Que Há de Errado Com a Política?
2º edition, revised, published in the Internet: 2009.
New Results Demand Hitherto Untried Means
“It would be madness and inconsistency to suppose that things which have never yet been performed can be performed without employing some hitherto untried means.” [Francis Bacon, Novum Organum: Instauratio Magna (New Instrument: The Great Renewal), Book I, VI]
Science Needs to Be Governed By Sound Reason and True Religion
“Lastly, if the debasement of arts and sciences to purposes of wickedness, luxury, and the like, be made a ground of objection, let no one be moved thereby. For the same may be said of all earthly goods: of wit, courage, strength, beauty, wealth, light itself, and the rest. Only let the human race recover that right over nature which belongs to it by divine bequest, and let power be given it; the exercise thereof will be governed by sound reason and true religion.” [Francis Bacon. Novum Organum: Instauratio Magna (New Instrument: The Great Renewal), Book I, CXXIX; emphasis added. Note: Organum – 1) set of principles for the use of philosophical or scientific investigation; 2) set of works by Aristotle about logic and the art of philosophize.]
The Decisive Role of Elites
Another conclusion of a general nature, also of the greatest importance, both theoretical and practical, is that the broader social conscience groups (the so-called elites) have a decisive role in the development of social-political processes in general, a fact that imputes to them a enormous responsibility, which is almost always not well enough recognized. Philip Converse referred to this immense responsibility in the following terms:
“The broad contours of elite decisions over time can depend in a vital way upon currents in what is loosely called “the history of ideas.” These decisions in turn have effects upon the mass of more common citizens. But, of any direct participation in this history of ideas and the behavior it shapes, the mass is remarkably innocent.” (Philip E. Converse. The Nature of Belief Systems in Mass Publics. In: APTER, D. E., org. Ideology and Discontent. New York, The Free Press of Glencoe, 1964. p. 255; emphasis added)
Below TUI, THE GLADNESS, THE LAKE.
Thus the superior man discriminates between high and low,
And thereby fortifies the thinking of the people.
“Heaven and the lake show a difference of that inheres in the natures of the two, hence no envy arises. Among mankind also there are necessary differences of elevation; it is impossible to bring about universal equality. But it is important that differences in social rank should not be arbitrary and unjust, for if this occurs, envy and class struggle are the inevitable consequences.
If, on the other hand, external differences in rank correspond with differences in inner worth, and if inner worth is the criterion of external rank, then people acquiesce and order reigns in society.” [I Ching, R. Wilheim, pp. 46-47. (Lu – The Conduct; the Path – Hexagram nº. 10 of the I CHING: the Book of Mutations, p. 56); emphasis added]
Universal Brotherhood Is a Law in Nature, Not Only an Aspiration
“Brotherhood, then, in its full meaning, is a law in nature. Stress has more than once been laid on this in our meetings, but not too much stress has thereon been laid. For it is the very object, the desire, of our work that brotherhood shall become practical in society, and it will never become practical until men understand that it is a law, and not only an aspiration. It is a common experience that when men have discovered a law of nature they no longer fight against it. They at once accommodate themselves to the new knowledge. They at once adapt themselves to the newly understood conditions, and in that very way we have preached brotherhood. And yet brotherhood is but so little known in our world.” (Annie Besant. The Spiritual Life, Vol. II, p. 160; emphasis added)
Out of These Differences Grows Up All the Possibilities of an Ordered Society
“That great principle (or Law) of Reincarnation must ever go hand in hand with the principle (or Law) of Brotherhood if Brotherhood is to be applied, if it is to be made a working principle of ordinary life. For it is out of these differences of age that grows up all the possibilities of an ordered and happy society amongst ourselves.” (Annie Besant. The Changing World, p. 80; emphasis added)