The End of Darkness (Part 1)
It is a desert, dark and fearful,
No goal for man, no way, no companion,
No sun, no candle, nothing is seen,
As if he has gone blind.
No wise man can he find to ask the way,
When suddenly thunder roars tiger-like,
And this man presses his ears for fear of the roar of thunder,
Then follows a brief lightning,
No one by him, no way is found,
Darkness and silence, and no hope is left.
It seems as if pain and torture are born with man, for, he has never been free from them throughout history. The apparently sweet moments of life, too, have been so brief that before tasting their pleasure, he has paid their indemnity by a tormenting pain and a life-consuming calamity. The rise of reformers in history, too, even if it has, sometimes and for a short time, provided some people with tranquility, yet it has been unable to liberate humanity forever from the sanguine clutches of the monster of confusions. A greater disaster is that with the passage of time, man’s pains are not reduced, but are increased and intensified.
The progress of science and technology in the present day world too, has not only failed to show a way to freedom; it has also produced fresh difficulties for human society. This lack of harmony between scientific and technological progress on the one hand, and spiritual tranquility of life on the other is on the increase every day and it has reached a point where some western thinkers, such as Ernest Yunger, who live in wholly industrialized countries, express this belief: “Man’s perfection and technical perfection are not attainable together, and if we desire one of them, we must sacrifice the other.
The collapse and annihilation of spiritualties have driven the bewildered man of our time, so far that he is prepared to destroy great communities of mankind for the sake of the most trifling things. The pages of human history have never been bloody to this extent, and, at no time, has humanity been so entangled with the defilement of hostility.
The expenditure on military equipment and armament today in various countries of the world forms the greatest item of their budgets. For example, the armament expenditure of 120 countries of the world in 1970 was twenty percent more than the amount spent on education in those countries; and their health and hygiene budget was only forty percent of their military budget.
Today the nations, engaged in cold war, spend a yearly sum of 3 billion pounds sterling (66 thousand pounds sterling a minute) preparing to kill human beings.
According to observers:
"The armament strength of the world up to 1961 was capable of destroying the globe twenty times". This ratio has been augmented tenfold today. Up to the same year, a total of 50 thousand atomic bombs were discovered by international spies in different countries. And today the kinds of bombs made by man are 2500 times more powerful than the one which destroyed Hiroshima. He has also made hydrogen bombs for the operation of which only an atomic explosion would be required. It is dreadful that all these destructive forces are able to annihilate the whole of mankind by pressing a button even if it is done by mistake.
Meanwhile, the weak nations of the world which are exploited by the strong are faced with such problems as poverty and hunger, so much so that today we see three quarters of the world population confronted by the monster of poverty and hunger. And since this large group of oppressed people is a threat to the interests of exploiters, those who hold power have assigned some funds for the so-called "combat with poverty and hunger" but really to preserve themselves and silence the protesting groups. But it must be remembered the said funds amount only to one-fiftieth of the expenditure incurred on drinks and cigarettes consumed in their own countries.
Today in order to solve such problems as poverty and hunger, war and class conflicts, man takes refuge in various ideological schools, but after some time he finds these, too, either an accomplice of such misfortunes, or unable to combat them. Therefore, in a state of total helplessness and despair, he gazes at the dark world to seek a sign of a lightning which would set fire to that blackness and save man from all this gloom.
The project of the United Nations seemed to be such a light which, in the gloomiest and most ominous period, namely after the deadly blows of the two World Wars on human society, shone in the minds of thinkers and reformers. And as the wounds inflicted on the body of the nations by the two Wars were still fresh, the leaders of various countries in the world took steps for the establishment of this organization due to the fear of occurrence of a third World War.
At first, most people supposed that a final solution had thus been found for deliverance from difficulties, but the hope in this organization was short lived. From the very beginning the powers, which should have committed themselves to the observance of the international laws and their non-violation, reserved for themselves the right of committing every kind of crime on the pretext of the right of "veto". After a short time it became clear that this organization, too, was nothing but a dazzling formality, for, these were only the weak nations which were, in fact, duty-bound to carry out its regulations.
The failure of the United Nations Organization to solve difficulties, owing to the lack of guarantee of execution, once more revealed the fact that neither plundering countries feel any pity for poor and hungry nations, nor is their own satiety to their interests. Neither are expansionist governments willing to abandon their military bases in weak countries, nor do they divide such countries peacefully between themselves. Also neither does there exist a basis for their educational programs, nor does the propagation of education and people's awakening in the interest of big powers. As a result, neither was the United Nations Organization able to remove the danger of great nuclear wars, nor could it save mankind from the clutches of poverty and hunger, nor solve man's mental problems.
With this failure of the United Nations, the last aperture of hope too was closed for mankind, and man began to be convinced of the futility of all hopes as well as the futility of the world. To escape from this bitter fact man either turned to suicide or retired from society by taking to hippyism, and thus trampled all social laws to seek refuge in narcotics. There is an increasing inclination towards hippyism as a rebellious movement in the world. For example, in 1968 in America three hundred thousand people retired from society, joined the hippies and took refuge to L.S.D. and Marijuana. The rush upon narcotics by this group reached such a point that in San Francisco alone one ton of marijuana is consumed every week.
In their bid to find humanity and brotherhood in eastern gnosticism, Hippies turn to India. But when they observe that the Indians too are suffering not only from poverty and hunger, but also of racial and class differences and sectarian clashes, and see nothing in gnosticism but dancing, poetry and addiction, they aimlessly and desperately return from this journey with their only souvenir, namely narcotics. And wander about mountains and deserts. Thus, the present-day human being is, in utmost despair, awaiting for death to be released from this painful and burdensome life.
Will a nuclear war destroy the whole mankind? Is three-quarters of the world population condemned to death because of poverty and hunger? Will narcotics eventually annihilate the human race? Will the days of man's misery never come to an end and will he never be liberated from this hopeless life? Will a day not come when poverty is uprooted from human society? Can a solution be ultimately found to do away with all this confusion of human societies and put things in order? Will man be able one day to find a way towards his ideal life? Will this despair give way to a future which is full of hope coupled with equality and brotherhood? Will a day not come when human-looking beings, who are true animals, put aside their beastly vices and start a pleasant life based on human virtues and fine qualities and service to their fellow-creatures? Is there any hope in future?
Are We Truly Awaiting Our Imam?
What does our Occulted Imam expect the Shias to do during his Ghaybat (occultation)?
Remembrance and chanting, a way to have heartfelt relations with Imam of the Time