“Let your vision be world-embracing, rather than confined to your own self.“
The Bahá’í Writings delineate a practical and new relationship between the nations and peoples of the world. While a prisoner first in Adrianople and later in Akka (Palestine) Bahá’u’lláh wrote the the Kings and Rulers of the world summoning them to the call of God and stressing the opportunities which it was in the power of these rulers and leaders to sieze. He called on them to bend their energies to the establishment of true religion, just government and international peace. He warned them of the dire consequences which the rejection of God’s message would entail.
Bahá’ís believe that true and lasting peace will be attained when mankind heeds the call of God. In the words of Bahá’u’lláh:
“The time must come when the imperative necessity for the holding of a vast, an all-embracing assemblage of men will be universally realized. The rulers and kings of the earth must needs attend it, and, participating in its deliberations, must consider such ways and means as will lay the foundations of the world’s Great Peace amongst men. Such a peace demandeth that the Great Powers should resolve, for the sake of the tranquility of the peoples of the earth, to be fully reconciled among themselves. Should any king take up arms against another, all should unitedly arise and prevent him. If this be done, the nations of the world will no longer require any armaments, except for the purpose of preserving the security of their realms and of maintaining internal order within their territories. This will ensure the peace and composure of every people, government and nation. … It is not for him to pride himself who loveth his own country, but rather for him who loveth the whole world. The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens.” -Bahá’u’lláh
The Baha’i Teachings recognize that religion has, too frequently, been the cause of war. In one of His talks, `Abdu’l-Bahá said:
“Religion should unite all hearts and cause wars and disputes to vanish from the face of the earth; it should give birth to spirituality, and bring light and life to every soul. If religion becomes a cause of dislike, hatred and division it would be better to be without it, and to withdraw from such a religion would be a truly religious act. For it is clear that the purpose of a remedy is to cure, but if the remedy only aggravates the complaint, it had better be left alone. Any religion which is not a cause of love and unity is no religion.”
Images of Akka and the prison are from http://bahai.org; Copyright © Bahá’í International Community