Turning the page on Brunei

I’ve said all I can say about the laws in Brunei that have drawn international protest. I am very sensitive to the suggestion by some that we in the West are trying to impose our values on that nation, and on others like it. For me, it has only been about human rights — about brotherly/sisterly love — which I feel transcend nations and that we are, in fact, part of a universal brotherhood all cut from the same spiritual or cosmic Source, which has been given many names by humans.

I have avoided writing about the Sultan of Brunei’s personal lifestyle, except to mention the obvious: he is very wealthy and the current boycott of his hotels is unlikely to put much of a dent in his personal fortune. Other writers have attacked what they say is his “lavish lifestyle,” but I stayed away from that: it’s nobody’s business but his. And besides, look at how many people in the West live lavish lifestyles (see Hollywood). True, I do think the boycott and the international criticism has not helped his personal reputation in some countries, but it is worth keeping in mind — objectively speaking — that there are many people in Muslim countries who are applauding him for his form of Shariah law. Such is our philosophical divide  . . .

To repeat: for me, it has only been about the human rights of LGBT people and women in that country, and if I strayed from those parameters, I apologize. I’ve voiced my views as one minnow in this great sea of humanity to a relatively small readership.

But ultimately, it is the people of Brunei who have to speak on this matter and effect change, if that is what they want. And the world has not heard much, if any, outcry from the people of that nation.

So, then, I close this subject with some thoughts from my Theosophical teachers.

“We are not brought into existence by chance nor thrown up into earth-life like wreckage cast along the shore, but are here for infinitely noble purposes.”
– Katherine Tingley

“The great lost chord of modern civilization is forgetfulness of the fact in nature of universal brotherhood, which means not merely a sentimental or political brotherhood; it means that we are all of one common cosmic or spiritual origin, and that what affects one affects all.”
G. de Purucker

“Theosophists are of necessity the friends of all movements in the world, whether intellectual or simply practical, for the amelioration of the condition of mankind. We are the friends of all those who fight against drunkenness, against cruelty to animals, against injustice to women, against corruption in society or in government, although we do not meddle in politics. We are the friends of those who exercise practical charity, who seek to lift a little of the tremendous weight of misery that is crushing down the poor. . . . The function of Theosophists is to open men’s hearts and understandings to charity, justice, and generosity, attributes which belong specifically to the human kingdom and are natural to man when he has developed the qualities of a human being. Theosophy teaches the animal-man to be a human-man; and when people have learnt to think and feel as truly human beings should feel and think, they will act humanely, and works of charity, justice, and generosity will be done spontaneously by all. “
– H. P. Blavatsky

“Let harmlessness be the keynote of your life.”
– Alice Bailey

Peace and love

Jillian

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