Quaker Activism - a quote from Dan Seeger

“To the extent that the blessing of peace is achieved by humankind, it will not be achieved because people have outraced each other in the building of armaments, nor because we have outdebated each other with rods, nor because we have outmaneuvered each other in political action, but because more and more people in a silent place in their hearts are turned to those eternal truths upon which all right living is based. It is on the inner drama of this search that the unfoldment of the outer drama of history ultimately depends.

“Knowing the subtlety of this, Quaker activism avoids making false muscular efforts in the hope of producing effects which are, in reality, beyond the powers of human manipulation, which are ultimately a matter of grace. Quaker activists avoid conceiving of themselves as 'social change engineers,' trying on technique after another to produce results which, when they fail to materialize, inspire yet more frantic searching for techniques…”

-- Dan Seeger, Practicing the Gospel of Hope in the Nuclear Age (Philadelphia: Wider Quaker Fellowship, 1983), p. 12.

I hope to post a few more selections from this worthwhile pamphlet, which I read during and after spring College Park Quarterly Meeting at Ben Lomond Quaker Center.


Anonymous said...

The first Quakers knew that there are at least two kinds of peace that matter to everyone: There is a peace as defined by man and a Peace as defined by God. There never will be total peace on the earth, prior to Jesus Christ's second coming, as man defines peace; it is impossible as long as sin remains in this world. To have that kind of peace, you must first eliminate sin in everyone and that cannot happen in this life since not one person will be forced to obey God's exact original Gospel Truth. To find Peace through God's Gospel Truth, as God defines Peace, we must seek first God's Kingdom and God's Righteousness.

From my casual observance, Quakers have not understood God's Kingdom or God's Righteousness for a very long time. Without that critical beginning in the right direction, God's Peace can never be obtained or shared. It is time for all, who merely call themselves Quakers, to clear what they only think they know from their minds and follow their leaders of 350 years ago, who were children of God's Peace and the last large group of true Christians on this earth. They perfectly fit the 2000 year old prophecy of the Philadelphia church in Rev 3! The rest of the people who merely call themselves Quakers, who refuse to follow in the footsteps of the first true Christian Quakers, ought to stop calling themselves Quakers because they are not Quakers or true Christians at all.

Sadly, like the false Quakers, the rest of the false Christians that the first Quakers exposed and all other unbelievers--the people who love this world and the things in it--have no desire for Peace as God defines it. That is why almost all of the earth and almost all of its people are headed for an overwhelming destruction by fire. Read Isa 24 for a description of that destruction. God, in His great Love and Mercy for those who love His Righteousness, will not let sin and sorrow rule forever. Very soon, He will put a halt to all of it and those who hated His definition of Peace will have to be shut out of His Kingdom forever. His Kingdom will not ever be polluted with any sin or sorrow. Only those who loved His Kingdom and His Righteousness more than their own lives will be allowed to live there. Now you know why the first Quakers willingly suffered persecution as they did. They belonged to God's Kingdom, His Home of Righteousness, where real Peace will reign for all eternity. anne robare / canawedding at aol dot com

Chris M. said...

Anna, Thank you for your comments. I hope and pray that Quakers are indeed receptive to, and seeking of, God's Kingdom or God's Righteousness because of our history and practice.

It is hard for me to imagine that the God whose Son died on the cross would bring to life the images of destruction that Isaiah so vividly described. There's no question that such destruction is frighteningly possible, but its seed comes from within humanity, not from God as I understand God.

-- Chris M.