Glen T. Martin
Grand Global Peace Meet, 3 January 2015, Chennai, India
The actualization of a peaceful, just, and sustainable world will be inseparable from the actualization of our higher human potential. Thinkers, scientists, mystics, and visionaries worldwide have often remarked that human beings have an immense spiritual, social, and cognitive potential that remains unactualized. The realization of a transformed world system will be inseparable from the realization of our higher human potential. It will provide opportunities for effective action now lacking to humankind.
Great thinkers like Albert Einstein, Carl Gustave Jung, and Ernst Laszlo have also declared that no fundamental problem can be solved on the same level that produced the problem in the first place. Yet on the Earth we are trying to do just that. We are trying to deal with climate collapse, poverty, pollution, terrorism, nation-state conflict, and all other global problems within the very framework that produced these problems in the first place. That framework is the global capitalist system and the system of sovereign nation-states, both of which actively prevent our higher human potential from emerging. These systems block opportunities for establishing peace, justice, and sustainability for the Earth.
Our globalized world today is characterized by multiple interdependent systems that now lead to disaster in numerous ways:
(1) The current world-system of “defense” and “security” is inherently a war-system. We are trying to create defense and security through using war and violence at the same level as the threats we perceive. The world has no peace system that can deal with security and peace from the appropriate higher level.
- The world-system surrounding human dignity and human rights does not protect rights (which are violated everywhere on Earth), but in effect is a system for violating these rights and human dignity. We think that we can protect human rights without realizing that human rights cannot be protected from the level of multiple militarized nations competing politically and economically. The world has no human rights and dignity system that can solve the problem of human rights from the appropriate higher level.
- The resources of the world such as good agricultural lands, clean water, and planetary forests are rapidly diminishing at the same time that the global population increases by some 80 million new persons each year. The world has no resource conservation system. You cannot conserve the planet from the same level of thinking that now diminishes it. We need a resource conservation system for the Earth.
- Similarly, the global economic, corporate, and national systems of the world are anti-environmental and causing climate collapse. The world has no sustainability system. Worldwide there are millions or organizations and agencies all operating with a limited and partial view of the problems and issues to be addressed, from nation-states to corporations to NGOs. The world is now a chaos-system characterized by un-coordination, fragmentation, and conflict. There is no system of social coordination directed toward solving our most fundamental problems.
Forums of the world like the World Trade Organization, the World Bank and IMF, or the U.N. Security Council and General Assembly are venues in which actors promote their own interests within a global competition of these interests. There is no forum for dialogue directed toward mutual understanding by people with the authority and concern to move the world toward a peaceful, just, and sustainable future.
The Constitution for the Federation of Earth addresses all these issues and brings them all together into a coordinated and organized peace-system, justice-system, resource conservation system, and sustainability-system. It is important to realize that all these global problems are interdependent and interconnected. You cannot solve the problem of global poverty (engulfing more than 50% of humanity), for example, within an economic system directed to private profit for the few, nor can you protect the global environment while the 50% of humanity who are living in poverty need to burn wood to cook their food, thereby deforesting the Earth. Nor indeed can you address either poverty or the environment while the nations of the world spend close to two trillion US dollars per year on weapons and war-preparation, money that should be spent on restoring the environment and eliminating poverty.
The “broad functions” of the Earth Federation under the Earth Constitution (outlined in Article One) address all these interrelated planetary crises. The entire Constitution is designed as anintegrated response to all these crises, with the understanding that they can only be solved through a comprehensive and integrated approach that converts the war-system to a peace-system, the human rights violation system to a human dignity protection system, the anti-ecological economic and nation-state systems to a sustainability system, the social fragmentation of the world to a social coordination system, and the fractured discourse of planetary self-interest to a system of dialogue directed toward mutual understanding and protection of our planetary future.
We cannot solve our lethal planetary problems on the same level that created the problems in the first place. We must move from global fragmentation under capitalism and the sovereign nation-state system to democratic world Earth Federation under the Earth Constitution. From this level, the opportunities and action for a transformed and sustainable world will emerge. Effective action is everywhere defeated by the current world-system.
The Earth Constitution is not some vague set of ideals like those expressed in the Earth Charter or the Millennium Development Goals. It is a concrete document creating specific institutional arrangements that can be studied, promoted, and enacted. It can and should serveas a model and goal for all our activities in the present, whether these be environmental, poverty alleviation, peace work or human rights work. By using this concrete model to conceptualize where we want to go on Earth, we coordinate and focus global actions, thereby maximizing our impact and transformative potential.
The Earth Constitution provides a concrete vision of a peace system, justice-system, sustainability-system and dialogue-system for the Earth. Let us take up this vision and make it happen. It alone can establish the systemic framework that can make effective opportunities and actions for a decent world order possible. It is our planet, our children’s future that is at stake. It is our global responsibility to make this happen.