Nations can be compare in a broad sense with individuals. We can say that nations have a soul and a personality. These may show as national pride, national values, manifest as a culture, or any other form of national affirmation.
There is no problem with nationalism or national pride and belonging to a nation. It is part of the human experience. We as individuals belong to a group or to groups. We join in accordance to circumstances, believes, common goals or problems, etc. So do nations. They form alliances, blocks, etc.
The problem comes when the national view, the particular comes before the whole. When a nation sees itself as the most important thing to preserve, often isolation comes as an answer to political changes or world situations. Dictators for example have used this method to insure that their personal dream is dreamt by everyone else in the nation and foreign influences are considered dangerous to the health of the nation, state and people. Other countries have used the idea of being an island or of being in another continent to avoid engaging in world affair. Great Britain or the United States are just two examples in which this kind of thought has ruled a nations behaviour.
For whatever reason not getting involved, viewing other nations in terms of friend or foe, can be considered old and immature. We know the world is one and that which happens somewhere else will and does have an impact in the rest of nations or individuals. To resolve conflicts we have two choices; war or the table where issues can be discussed. Through history it seems, the war option has been the one most widely used. It can be a war on drugs, on terrorist, against evil forces... It can be war as a means to protect what is believed to be a right or a possession, or a position that is often labelled as “strategic”.
As humanity evolves, and it is doing so very fast in many fields, the view we have on nations and the view nations have about themselves and their role in the world has to change. Communications and economy have interlinked the world like never before and have done so in 25 years! Science and technology have been evolving and producing knowledge, comfort, gadgets and possibilities that were unthinkable 50 years ago. Change happens so fast that many gadgets become obsolete before their life cycle is over! Remember the old fax machine? Or the eight track or cassette players? I am sure you have seen perfectly good equipment being thrown into the recycle bin while still being able to render perfect service.
The need for change and to keep up with the times is evident. But politics have change very slowly in comparison. We still think as if the nation is a valuable thing that needs protection from.... and thus we see peril in many things. Some nations are self obsessed, other seek to join other nations, but only if they can manage to think alike and if their circumstances are similar or are to be so. The rest, remains foreigner and untrusted. Other times, other nations, other people are simply ignored or not know about. As if they where not our business and travel companions.
But, how are we going to change politics? How are we going to make the negotiation table much more effective than war? Again, I see the United Nations as a major player to achieve this goal. We need a United Nations in which interaction is not only possible but welcome and in equal terms. This would be the sign of healthy international relationships. A change in modus operandi. Business will not be business as usual.
There are problems and issues that need to be overcome before this happens. Are there nations prepared to conduct business in this new fashion rather than the old one? Maybe some, but others still need to evolve and come to terms with the present. The view on national interest (or security) has to change for a view of human interest and human security. Nations (we) have to assume that we are all really connected, that nothing in the world is foreign or unimportant to us. That we are involved in everything and that we can do a lot, if we join to do so.
A change of mind and leadership is needed to bring politics and “national interest” into the 21st Century and walk away from policies better suited for Nineteen Century colonialism and world view.
We are not far from a new “cold war”. China, Russia, Syria, form a complex triangle. So do the Palestinian, Irani and Israeli, another complex triangle in the same region. All with national interest and security issues from other world powers behind the scene. Another nuclear cold war? Maybe. That would mean we haven't learn the lesson yet. That would mean that business as usual is not working at all, it is not evolving but hindering progress and making us unsafe and stuck in the past.
There are no world leaders to be seen. Not one person capable of taking leadership of the situation. Maybe because it is not an issue that can be solved by one man (or one nation). It is only thorough collective collaboration that situations can be truly overcome and progress made. That applies to possible cold wars, to starvation, to poverty, to environmental issues, and a huge etcetera- The change has to come from a group, from a collective. I believe the United Nations were born and conceived to do exactly that. Therefore the need for reform in the United Nations. Therefore the need for a different way of thinking about the world and our place in it.
We are all involved and we all have a right of choice and the possibility of moving into the 21st Century, into the Age of Aquarius living, into a better world.
We can write to the media asking them to improve their coverage on important issues. We can write to our government representatives to ask them to view things differently and hold them accountable for their actions. We can contact groups that are campaigning for change according to our preferences and believes. We can ask for divine intervention, but remember that the media, and politicians won't react just because. And divine intervention could happen, but divinity might be waiting for your intervention too. There is a lot we can do.
Think about it.