The Ascent of Society: The Social Imperative in Personal Salvation

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Baha'i Publishing Trust, 2007 - 331 pages
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In The Ascent of Society: The Social Imperative in Personal Salvation, author John S. Hatcher answers questions that have been explored by spiritual seekers for many yearshow does personal spiritual development translate into social experience? Is there a social imperative connected with individual spiritual growth? Is involvement with others necessary for one to evolve spiritually? This penetrating study describes the objective of personal spiritual growth as an ever-expanding sense of self that requires social relationships in order to develop. Hatcher focuses on the Bah belief that human history is a divinely guided process in which spiritual principles are gradually and progressively expressed in social institutions. He demonstrates that the aspirant to spiritual transformation cannot view personal health and development as being possible apart from the progress of human society as a whole.

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Contents

The Basis for a Global Perspective
5
Independent Investigation Does Not Imply Complete Autonomy
25
Creation Focused on Human Ascent
31
The Twin Duties in Relation to Physical Reality
38
Spiritual Ascent as Artistic Process
52
The Social Imperative in Personal Salvation
65
The Focus of Revelation on a Framework for Collective Ascent
74
The Baháí Concept of the Social Self
82
A New Wineskin for the New Wine
131
Choice Wine at the Family Reunion
151
The Pervasiveness and Importance of Vineyard Imagery
158
The Choice Wine Sealed with Musk
168
The Stage of EstablishmentClimax of the Lesser Peace
213
Modeling the Future
225
Procedures and Protocols of Governance in the Present
235
The Baháí Calendar
280

Achieving Selflessness in a Contemporary Environment
89
The Importance of Human Volition
95
Religion as the Process by which Manifestations
108
Gradual Unification of the Process
114
The Strategic Importance of the Present Age
120
An Abiding Image of a World Commonwealth
288
Notes
295
Bibliography
311
Index
317
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