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Factors Stabilizing Cultures throughout History

Allamah Muhammad Taqi Ja'fari
Some cultures or cultural elements certainly seem more stable than others. Various theories have been proposed accounting for their stability, and it is quite useful to study them. First, we should keep in mind that some cultures have not at all remained firm due to their elements being general human virtual facts -in fact, they should be regarded as man's virtual elements “as they are.”
Studying these cultures may make their scholars and followers put serious effort into finding the natural reason brought about by their geographical, economic, social, political and historic aspect; thus, through realistic assessment of their cultures, they may refine and advance human ideals and come to dynamic, objective cultures.
For instance, slavery was a culture that even great scholars like Aristotle approved of; although it covered all human qualities in its own framework of slavery, it was still a totally incorrect culture that dominated most ancient lands. However, this culture cunningly rules out one of the most vital virtues of man -responsible freedom -thus upsetting man's developed thoughts into a state of confusion and disorder. Islam, on the other hand, considered slavery a phenomenon totally irrelevant to man's “actual” virtues, and set out to demolish it.
Thus, the reason for the stability and deep influence of a culture cannot abstractly lie in its human virtual reality. In order to recognize if a culture is truly useful and stable, therefore, we need not the period of time of its duration, but its basic factors. A few of the basic factors that stabilize cultures are:
Factor One: the positive relationship between a culture - or some of its components -and the needs or luxuries of the members of a society. For example, the unique culture concerning living beings in India is based on regional factors or beliefs about living this only see in that area; likewise, the traditions of Nourooz (the new year celebrations) in Iran are due to Iran's climate, and have been established for many years.
Factor Two: is time; the more aged cultural elements become, the higher their value will be. It is impossible to account for this factor, but we can say that firmness during a long time can be sign of stability in cultural elements; however, it is not enough to prove it. Selfishness has existed throughout the whole history of mankind; very few cases can be found in which man has succeeded in keeping his virtues aligned with true logic and used them correctly -the majority have fallen astray in assessing “themselves”, and instead of having the proper “self'”(safeguarding their innate virtues up to perfection), they fall into ill-mannered selfishness. Such examples bring us to the conclusion that the stability of a culture in human lives does not necessarily imply its righteousness, although anything advantageous to man can prove original, and will remain firm for a long time.
Factor Three: the formation of the culture of traditions, customs and beliefs plays a crucial role in giving a society a special nationality, and causes the people to be focused and organized. Soon these cultural elements will turn into the identity of the society, which it will defend to the last breath; of course, this is due to the fact that as time goes by, there is more communication among cultures, which in turn enhances cultural studies and research, and modifications would prove necessary .
Factor Four: the compatibility of cultures with facts and realities is verifiable. The stronger and deeper their compatibility, the better the stability of the cultural elements.
Apart from the second factor -which considers cultural stability as due to time and duration -the other above-mentioned factors do not do so. In case of the first factor, the reasons and necessities leading to the beliefs of the society require concern, if they are based on the psychological rules of the peoples; time will undoubtedly be unable to influence it. And if it depends on the personal beliefs of the intellectual figures in the society, two factors will determine its survival.
a. the qualitative and quantitative influence of the outstanding figures in the society;
b. their qualitative and quantitative background logically supporting their culture's stability.
If the supporting factor is their cultural crystallization -directing the people as a truly original establishment -the culture will be deeply engraved in people's souls, and can strongly unite them. This is why time will not be able to influence it, for it enjoys logical backing. [28]

Blind Imitation of Past Beliefs and Cultures Inhibits Logical Thought and Wisdom
We have already accepted that the firm establishment of culture among people does not necessarily imply that it enjoys originality or is compatible with reality. Although a culture well-engraved in people's lives and souls does become a viewpoint to man and the world, many cultures past and present lose all of their composure when it comes to logical analysis; therefore man must analysis the dominant culture of his society and eliminate any sedimentary, baseless elements in it if he wants to take positive steps towards “elevating evolutionary life.” But alas, sometimes imitation dominates great minds so much that all of man's thoughts are blocked. It seems we deny the fact that:
Imitation destroyed people; a thousand damns be upon imitation! (Mowlavi)
How can an imitator also be a researcher? How can a wise one be the same as a fool?
Centuries come and go, but society leaders still do not understand how destructively inhibiting imitation is. Maybe they are afraid that without imitation in people's individual and social life, they would not need management anymore……have they not ever thought that the power- greedy must first change from “person” to “thing” -in other words, from “researcher” to “imitator” -before they can change people, take advantage of them, and imprison them in a cage of illogical imitation?
In brief, depriving people of sin, recognizing true life and its rules is a greatly unforgivable and deserves no less than being banned from God's kind blessings.
Blindly following the beliefs and traditions of the predecessors ruins one's mind; likewise following those drowning in their animal desires, those who have totally put aside human morals or dignity in the name of freedom, modernity, progress, culture and so on, using such deceiving jargon to destroy all logic, consciousness or conscience. This is not an Eastern theory or religious prejudice, for we can see even more intense reflection, of such hatred for Western leader, by Western scholar, themselves in an interview with Spiegel, one of them had said, “Shame is fading away, and the urge to kill no longer know, any bounds. The mass media -television and radio stations the most -have brazenly begun to use force and impudence in order to attract more customers for the general industry. Cultural critics are complaining about inadvertent violence, and have announced a moral disaster condition Sociologists, psychologists and politicians are angry with the sexual corruption presented in all cultural area, -TV and the film industry in particular. The confusion caused by insolence and violation is so great that even the Liberal Church of the Bible cries out about it in its publications.
“The women in Bayer have signed petitions demanding laws against sexual misconduct and violence Sociologists discuss subject like ‘violence in arts’ or ‘tendencies towards new terror’. The daily Frankfutter Alegmaina Seitung has spoken of unprecedentedly high violence in the community, claiming a state of moral disaster which has engulfed the whole urban area, A, violence and harassment changes from a forbidden crime to a hobby, unprotected, confused humanity tries to condemn the increasing pressure and oppression upon foreigners, violence in street stadium, and public transport vehicles.
Freud's mysterious statement comes to mind: "The lack of shame is a sign of mental weakness. The conscience does not function anymore.”
Spiegel: Mr. Duerr [29], violence and violations are increasing day by day. What is wrong with this society?
Duerr: In my opinion, the basic problem is the destruction of social relationships, which leads to what man calls emotional death -in other words, the “end of warmth.”
The mass media also accelerate it by spreading it so much. Although our modern, free society has brought us happiness, there is one problem with this freedom -it took away from us the warmth that used to exist among families, and dominated man's social conduct.
Spiegel: How is the demise of family attachment related to the lack of shame?
Duerr: They are definitely related. For instance, physical shame means limiting the signs of sexual behaviour in order to keep a personal relationship chaste.
Nowadays, people have no respect for selected friendships. Therefore, privatizing sexual attraction is meaningless.
Spiegel: What if brazenness grows? If physical shame- as you have stated -arises from man's nature - how can we witness impudence increase every day?
Duerr: The Pope and the high priests are still in deep discussion on the nature of man. Sociologists, on the other hand, also stubbornly resist. What I'm trying to say is that, however people's social life may have formed, physical shame plays a critical role in it, for it can reduce social frustrations, and strengthen the relationships between married couples; that is why with shame fading away, adultery has increased to such an extent.
Spiegel: But this freedom is highly publicized, contrary to your theory.
Duerr: There certainly has been no society yet in which personal relationships are really so intensely publicized. This behaviour has also led to violence. It seems to be unprecedented throughout history.
Spiegel%: Freud spoke of a lack of shame that weakens the wisdom of mind.
Duerr: That is true; there comes a time when man realizes that his own incompetence has led to a great lack of culture and civilization. Progress-orientated theorists have always claimed that primitive societies enjoyed much more zeal, endeavour, desire and uncontrollable instincts that we do in our well-established society today.” [30]
It is needless to mention how strongly Islamic culture and other divine religions have repeatedly warned man about the role of lust and undisciplined life in weakening thoughts.
“Manhood lies in effort and endeavour, not indulging in sexual pleasures. No matter how sophisticated he may get, his indulge will degrade him: His cries may go high, but he himself will fall.” (Mowlavi)
Faith, the highest outcome of logical thought and elevated emotions, is destroyed by shamelessness.
Imam Ali (a) has said: "One, who has no modesty, has no faith.”
Although Freud states that, “The lack of modesty is a sign of mental weakness", how can he -with all of his emphasis on the necessity of saturating sexual instincts in any way possible -consider the lack of modesty as a sign of a weak mind?

Culture Adoption and Its Causes
Cultural adoption has become quite popular these days. As religion-opposed, immoral activities and phenomena are infiltrating religious societies, [31] the nobly dignified ones become more and more terrified.
We shall address culture adoption by considering a few points:
One: From an absolute point of view, is culture adoption wrong or right? What is included in the cultural concepts and elements being accepted?
Obviously, the third part of this question is correct, and it must be determined what kind of culture is being accepted. If it is “the suitable methods or meritorious qualities for those of man's physical or mental activities based on logical reasoning in sensible life”, such a culture would undoubtedly be accepted, as it has been throughout history -man's perfectionist potential would seek it under any circumstances.
The most evident example possible for this is the Muslims' fantastic endeavours throughout the 2nd through 5th centuries (Hijra) which innately aimed to establish culture, civilization and adopt the meritorious, suitable aspects from other countries. From the Caspian shores to the Atlantic waters, they prevented their original, evolutional culture from demise. Such pioneers of culture and civilization indeed discarded any filthy, immoral phenomena that opposed religion in the name of culture, and only considered those realities which were advantageous to man's physical and spiritual life as culture.
Two: Adopting dynamic, objective (evolutionary) cultures, although quite vital, does not mean imitation without studying, examining and refining.
Imitation ruined people, a thousand damns be upon imitation! (Mowlavi)
Imitation is destructively wrong, no matter whether something good or bad is imitated; in any case, the copycat is totally unaware of what he is doing. The only difference is, if a meritorious reality is being imitated, it will lead to good effects, despite without the role of the imitator. Literary culture quite clearly elaborates on this: “One who calls God is much different from one who knows God; as different as men are from animals.
Thus, the God-knowers to God-seekers are like mystic knowledge to science.
The shining sun is not the same as the shining moon; each shining differs from the other.
How can a researcher be considered equal to a copycat?
How can the knowing be the same as the ignorant?
If only the laws forbidding copying were seriously followed, there would be no more fluctuation in scientific theories, philosophy and other cultural elements. Recently, ‘scientific’ theories have infiltrated Islamic societies from the West, and have been imitatively accepted by the unaware as scientific discoveries. If they were told that such issues lack a soundly scientific basis and are merely subjective deductions or assumptions, they would abruptly disagree, “No! you are decadent! You are opposing science! The time for using imagination has come to an end.
This is science, the only thing that can bring about our progress. “These ignorant -and, at times spiteful -people forced others to follow such theories, abusing universally accepted principles such as “Scientific rules cannot be disagreed with.” Since their obedience was merely imitation, even when the theories were scientifically proved wrong and rejected in the West, the copycats insisted on their beliefs- as if the clear blue sky were still pouring rain on their houses! [32]
Three: There are various forms of culture transferring to other societies. Let us now study:

Culture Transfer
1. Culture transfer is best in its useful, productive form, which includes realities concerning meritorious methods for man's ‘reasonable life.’ Such cultural elements -like science, industries, religious qualities and elements based only upon man's pure virtues - are not only suitable enough for everyone to cooperate in their transfer, but also Islam has considered it a religious duty.
Many Islamic references have emphasized on such cooperation. The Holy Koran says: “Help one another to piety and good fearing; do not help each other to sin and enmity. There is no piety or good deed in this world higher than spreading elevating cultures that can save man from ignorance, poverty, anxiety, and various needs. And fear God, for surely he is terrible in retribution. [33]
The Holy Prophet (s) has also said: “All people are related to God; those who are more useful for others, are the most favoured by God”
There remains no doubt that only life-saving cultures are the most vital and the most advantageous to man.
In all major references on history and civilization - written whether by Western or Eastern researchers -it is agreed that when Muslims were free of their selfish, tyrant rules during the 3rd through 5th centuries (Hijra), they had the chance to adopt cultural elements from other nations of that time, expand their culture and civilization, and pass on their own useful cultural elements alongside the elements adopted, adjusted and refined; some historians have stated this era as being crucial to the protection of science and culture in the Medieval times.
2. Transferring useful cultural elements, in order to gain economic or political advantages. In other words, the society intends to spread useful cultural elements to other societies in order to profit economically politically, or even dominate them; the purpose is not to follow ideal human goals or expanding helpful cultures. In these cases, the communities or nations conceding the cultures must take into careful consideration what they are adopting; otherwise, they would end up with a load of nonsense called ‘culture’, which would eventually ruin them.
As the renowned Iranian poet Nezami Ganjavi writes: “What are they endeavouring for” one asked He was told, “They buy sorrow at the expense their lives.
3. Transferring culture in order to present the society as a leading pioneer to other societies.
Although such meagre intention may seem unimportant at first, they can lead to destructive aftermaths, for they all originate from selfishness; furthermore, they may even humiliate the society receiving their culture, and demand a reward for elevating their culture. “Indeed, our brain tissue is quite different from yours; we are much more complete, and as you know, the principle of evolution states that the superior can consider themselves as the goal, and others the means to achieve it!”
4. Transferring spiritually or physically corruptive and harmful factors to others in the name of culture may possibly be the most vexed of human actions towards their peers. Creating and presenting sexually arousing devices on a large scale -though seemingly scientifically-based phenomena or depicting beauty - actually aims to destroy mankind.
5. The production of stories, paintings or other forms of ‘art’ implying nihilistic goals, however exquisite they may be, is equal to destroying human beings.
6. Creating any works of art -no matter how attractive or fascinating -that humiliates and ridicules human character is equal to murder.
7. Efforts towards establishing ignorance about social problems and neglecting the poor; cultural affects clearly show this.
8. Any efforts towards depriving people of their responsible freedom grace, dignity and the life they deserve is equivalent to destroying their souls, no matter what or how the cultural activities may be.
9. Any seemingly-cultural efforts towards distracting human beings from eternity and the origin and end of life, is not different from trying to annihilate man's goal - seeking spirit.
Now we indeed realize what a massacre goes on among human communities, or as Jibran Khalil Jibran puts it, “Not only are the murderers of human souls ignorantly enjoying themselves, but they are even publicly announced guilty of murder, and ,till the dead souls around them do not touch them.”
"The justice that is now on earth brings demons to tears, and makes the dead laugh all its sight.”
"Prisons and death is for the smaller, weaker criminals; the strong criminal, enjoy glory and honour.”
"If one steals a flower, he is condemned and humiliated; if one steals the whole field, he is considered a significant hero.”
"Murderers of bodies are punished, but killers of human spirits walk about freely.” [34]

Current Cultural Changes
In an article, Paul J. Bahanan writes: “Ever since the mid-1800s, cultural changes accelerated at a higher rate, which was due to vast technological and industrial advances; cultural exchange has also sped up. Inventions like airplanes, cinema, radio, television, and so forth, make it possible for customs, traditions or cultures all around the world to be in constant touch. Anywhere you are, you can enjoy American jazz, English football or Japanese kimonos at the same time.
Apparently, the expansion of cultural exchange is preparing the grounds for a global culture, and the differences among various peoples fading away. Some fear that this trend will cause man to be deprived of his long-established traditions. Others believe that the development of global cultures would lead to more variety and enrich cultures all around the world.” [35]
There are a few points to consider here: First: Science and technology have been separated from culture; this is quite considerable, since they naturally provide a purely scientific viewpoint, and establish a profit-orientated basis. The meritorious aspects of science and technology have unfortunately been contaminated by profiteering trends.
Second: Advances in culture development and exchange devices are highly crucial and unprecedented. If the cultural relationships and exchanges are not carefully calculated, social problems are very likely, for what is nowadays induced into people's minds as culture is not always originated from purely human emotions. If a general law -like the Human Rights -were written so that not only the study, adjustment and refining of cultures for being put into use for man's evolution, but also preventing filthy, commonplace phenomena entering other societies in the name of culture could be taken care of, original, dignified human cultures would find much more hope for survival; otherwise, they end of .humanity would be inevitable.
Third: “Apparently, the expansion of cultural exchange is preparing the grounds for a global culture, and the differences among various peoples seem to be fading away.”
This is not as easy as it may seem to be. By carefully studying today's cultural issues, social management trends and various systems of authority and power, we cannot come to deny the role of mighty leaders in imposing powerful society cultures. On the other hand, original, productive cultures which take account of man's highest emotions and spirits have fallen way behind technology and its characteristics nowadays. Let us return to Professor Bahanan’s article, where he clearly elaborates on this fact: "Some sociologists believe most social problems are due to the fact that some cultural elements progress more slowly than others. Most retardation in the history of the United States have been in non-physical aspects, e.g. thoughts and traditions. Science and technology advance at such great speed that they leave non-physical cultural issues way behind.”

How Cultural Aspects Can Be Transferred from One Society to Another
1. The almighty God has provided the truth -seeking with the facts about the universe, and -due to His divine, extreme kindness, concretely confirmed in Islamic references -leaves no positively aimed efforts without fruitful result. The Koran has on several occasions emphasized on the necessity of fruitful outcomes due to efforts: "No soul laden bears the load of another and a man shall have to his account only as he has laboured.” [36]
"And who so does an atom's weight of good shall see it and who so does an atoms weight of evil shall see it.” [37]
Thus, every human being is potentially ready to receive realities by means of efforts; according to this divine-human principle, man's success in discovering truths depends on his amount of effort This divine-human principle provides all peoples and nations with useful cultural elements, as is verified in this hadith by the Holy Prophet (s)
"Seek knowledge even if it may mean going all the way to China .”
It was due to this belief that Muslims made great efforts ever since the rise of Islam towards acquiring the perfect cultural elements of other nations, and not only did they discover plenty of cultural and ideological realities about other cultures during the 3rd an 4th centuries (Hijra), but also fertilized them and got quite significant results with highly elevated their findings.
Thus, Islam not only never prevents adopting positive foreign cultural elements -the most apparent example to name of is science, a means of achieving the truth -but even strongly recommends it. Islam, therefore, accepts any cultural elements that can effectively discover or adopt true facts.
It is of great importance that anthropologists distinguish real scientific issues -which are proved through concrete scientific evidence -from potentially right or wrong theories and deductions; in other words, although such theories aim to account for certain phenomena, they have not yet been definitely approved of. Studying them in anthropological fields as the mere theories or deductions they are, is quite appropriate. It would be highly useful to bring them into a society seeking development and perfection, in order to expand the humanities.
2. The current Western knowledge of the nature of man has led to a vast amount of anthropological explanations, concepts and issues so popular that they have become the source of many interpretations about various human aspects, e.g. ‘strong tendencies towards essential pleasures and enjoyment,’ which following Freud's approval, began to look like a matter of scientific significance. Apart from a very few number of wise, truth-seeking ones, most people in the West account for human issues on the basis of the highly popular hedonistic viewpoints. It is the unquestionable duty of a developing, perfectionist society to carefully seek reasons for all human aspects, and to take into serious consideration the fact whether man is naturally hedonistically orientated or not, and if he is, are the pleasures concerned with only natural, purely physical ones? Should spiritual, mental pleasures not be included? Is a society where no pleasures are based on the pains and inconveniences of others possible? In fact, such people have -using mental, social, regional and political factors -put so much emphasis on a human aspect that does not even innately exist in him that it now seems to be an essential part of human nature in the eyes of the simple-minded. Thus the establishment of Western culture nowadays is not comprehendible without taking hedonistic principles into consideration. [38]
3. Some certain cultural elements originate from ethical and regional features exclusive to some nations or peoples, and thus lack a universally human quality like taboo behaviours of tribal customs and particular interpretations of minor aspects of life. According to Islam's definition of culture (as an objective, creative culture), such elements are not only definitely unusable in anthropological issues, but even cannot be considered as ideal cultural phenomena.
4. There are other cultural elements that are compatible with reasonable human ideals. For instance, by studying religious cultures in various nations, we find that some cultural elements maybe considered unimportant in others -or maybe even illogical. A logical reasoning brings us to the conclusion that all of them originate from an extremely reasonable human ideal which has been degraded through time to a worthless phenomenon due to regional points of view and mental manipulations. We face such phenomena in various forms of worship for God. The Koran has also pointed it out. [39]
One of the commonest of human ideals that is degraded to lowly phenomena is justice -which, in its general form, is universally approved of. Since law has existed throughout the history of man, there is no exception to the fact that justice is accepted by everyone; when law exists among fellow men, every aspect of their life either obeys the law or defies it. (Let us suppose the latter is the case.) If they obey the law, justice exists; if not, there will be cruelty and deviation. However, we know that justice, in the hands of the selfish, power-greedy and ignorant people, is degraded down to a cruelly unjust phenomenon. When such cultural adjustments are transferred to anthropological domains, they will bring about nothing but obsessing people.
How Can Man -Who Accepts Culture and Cultural Activities Due to His Perfection-seeking Virtues - Openly Accept Destructive, Corrupt Cultures?
Let us first mention again that the reason why man accepts culture is his intense tendency for perfection, which is undoubtedly mighty; individual and social advances in various fields such as science and technology clearly prove it.

Now we must see why perfection-seeking human accepts destructive, corrupt factors so easily?
The most important reason for corruption is the vacuum-like gap of the realities of evolutionary culture among the society. In such an abyss, man's innate desire for perfection will either fade away, or may remain. If the former is true, lust and animal desire will dominate man's internal existence, and make any kind of corruption seem like enjoyment or even a necessity, and become the highest aim of his life. In such cases, all fundamentals like religion, ethics, law, economics, and politics will be manipulated by corruption, and lead the society for eventual demise. [40]
In the second case, if the innate desire for perfection still exists deep inside man, it can again be activated provided the necessary conditions, and attain original, positive cultural elements once more. If society leaders can safeguard it against corruption in fields like religion, politics, law, morality and education, and provide the grounds for its activation, the gap will obviously be filled with original, evolutionary culture. In any case, therefore, the leaders of the societies should protect their people against destruction.
The third case, which is the most dangerous form of anti-cultural invasion, is when the perfection-seeking eagerness is dominated by the ‘animal-like natural self.’ Thus, man turns into the most dangerous being, who would willingly destroy everything for just a moment of is own enjoyment.
Generally, the desire for perfection may be activated in positive or negative poles: The positive pole pertains to the proper, worthy activities all Prophets, Imams (a) and other leaders of evolutionary human movements have done in order to keep humanity from poverty or infidelity. For instance:
1. How does the Holy Prophet Abraham (a) use this force? He stands firmly against all of his friends and the people of his time in order to make faith in the only God, honesty, sincerity and other moral virtues a reality. The desire for perfection makes him carry out the task sacrificing his own child. It would be impossible to perform such a bitter task without the endless desire for perfection. With all the force Abraham had, even if he had lived for centuries, he would have done the same time and time again.
2. The Holy Prophet Moses (a) faces the atrocities of the Pharaoh for many long years, never suffers the least pain. He could have kept on his resistance for years and years without wavering or fatigue.
3. The history of the efforts and pains of the Prophet Jesus (a) needs no further explanation.
4. The Holy Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (s) said,
"No other prophet went through as much pain and trouble as I did.”
However, he accepted the pain and trouble so eagerly as if he actually enjoyed it. Imam Ali (a) also showed gloriously profound efforts through both pure worship and sincere services for people in order to enhance their prosperity. [41]
The negative pole desires unlimited “self-power”; indeed, degradation into lowly values knows no bounds.
As Nero once said: “If only all of mankind had only one head, I could cut it off with one stroke!”
Ghengis Khan be slaved many societies of his time, and still could not get enough.
Tamerlane made pillars out of the heads he cut, obsessed by the advance of his unlimited power. Those who live only for their lusts and desires consider people as their highest aim in life, even if it may lead to the end of all of mankind. They not only consider their philosophy as the best for their own society, but also regard all of history as a mirror to interpret it by.
Thus, both positive and negative poles of "self"-enhancement lead to an immortal panacea; as Mowlavi states: These tyrants are truly venomous, painful vipers contrary, however, to men of piety.

Deculturalization Instead of Cultural Generalization
Unfortunately, culture is falling apart instead of enhancing its common cultural elements during the late 20th century; the turning point here are industrial societies, and only the power greedy, selfish authoritarians know what will eventually happen. If the curve of culture continues to fall into a nosedive, we would be quite lucky if it just degrades us back to our cave days. The ‘new’ culture it advertises deploys every scientific or artistic effort in order to establish animal instincts, and take people far away from highly moral virtues.
We had better call it the ‘anti-culture’, or ‘deculturalization’ of human societies. It tends to deliver the final blow to humanity: first demolish human realities and fundamental values, destroy the sacred foundation called ‘family’, and eventually call the whole earth a useless part of the solar system, and ruin it.
May God save mankind once again from those who destroy human values and deculturalize humanity, and grant us deliverance by enhancing our logic, reason and conscience. [42]
A global culture depends directly on the globalization of the four fundamental realities:
1. global human economy,
2. global human power,
3. global human rights, and
4. global human politics.
Let us elaborate further by addressing:

Global Culture
1. The idea of achieving a global culture for people of all nations and societies is a great human ideal that anyone aware of man's nature, physical and spiritual needs and commonalities would warmly approve of. The strongest reason for the universal agreement on this matter is the generality of the humanities and literary culture that covers all nations and peoples, and is the same for Asians, Africans or Europeans.
2. By ‘global culture’ we do not refer to all elements and phenomena, for any society innately has certain characteristics in regard to religion, the universe and fellow men that are exclusive to its own historical, geographical and social factors.
What we mean by global culture are the general realities of culture, such as fundamental moral virtues (love for fellowmen, sacrificing for human ideals), accepting a worthy, meritorious life for mankind, accepting reasonable (responsible) freedom for all, and accepting to try hard to advance man's highest goals.
If the four above-mentioned fundamentals (global human economy, global human power, global human rights, and global human politics) are logically established, global culture is obviously achievable. We realize that all divine religions -originating from Abraham's -based upon man's pure, innate virtues (especially Islam, which covers all of their basics) would warmly accept such a culture. If all human societies do not possess the four fundamentals, this culture will never be able to exist.
The reason why is quite clear. Considering the definition for culture (the proper, worthy or meritorious qualities for man's physical or spiritual life phenomena or activities based on logic and emotions originating from reasonable life, [43] no society can enjoy a dynamic, objective evolutionary culture by means of an imperfect economy, lack of establishment for people's physical or spiritual enhancement or a legal system truly addressing social requirements and realities, for throughout the history of politics and power, when Machiavellians have taken control, humanity and its values have unfortunately been victimized. If powerful politicians are the end and people are the means” is the key motto to achieve political control, there will be no room for values like religion, morals, law, socioeconomics, politics or even culture -the ideas of Ghengis Khans and Neros proves this.
[28] We read in ancient Egyptian law books -dating 3000 years back in time that the first thing the accused should be asked is. “Does your conscience approve of what you tell the judge?. Such agreement between conscience and speech in ancient Egyptian legal culture can still be regarded as a solemn truth
[29] From an interview with German anthropologist Hans Peter Duerr, in the Spiegel, No.2, 1993.
[30] These theorists do not prefer ‘unlimited’ lifestyles in order to enjoy civilized excitement or desire, for civilized people act on their elevated spiritual talents; thus, bringing instincts under control -in particular insatiable hedonism, which is the strongest -is of crucial necessity.
[31] We do not mean completely religious or highly moral societies, but those not yet engulfed by immoral and lack of religion.
[32] For instance, a) when the essence of sexual instincts and their priority over all other aspects had become popular in the past, some people in the East presented it as a scientific rule. After a while, a few psychologists like Adler and lung discarded the theory. The writer has even heard from the late scholar Dr. Mirsepasi -who was a close friend of Freud -that his theory was more like a force, rather than a scientific issue. Later, some psychological experts claimed that the essence of safeguarding one's virtues and personality was the deepest, most active of the instincts, and took Freud's theory under more intense criticism.
However, some of our academic institutions still consider it a scientific issue! Such mental deviation is a result of copying scientific culture, which destroys all truth-seeking spirits in man. b) As we all know, the theory of animal evolution to higher species was proposed by Lamarke and Darwin in the 19th century. Their accounts were no more than a novel theory. However, it infiltrated our society like a scientific law of concrete proof. But as time went by and more research was made, it was shown to lack evidence, and soon fell into dark obscurity. For further study, please see Pierre Rosseau, The History of Industry and Inventions.
[33] The Table (5): 2.
[34] Jibran Khalil Jibran, Al-mavakeb
[35] The World Book of Encyclopaedia, Paul J. Bahanan.
[36] The Star (53): 39, 40
[37] The Earthquake (99): 7, 8.
[38] For further elaboration on this point, we must mention a highly dramatic change that has occurred nowadays, and the results it has brought about:
When the West broke down all walls confining freedom and its glorious values, liberty -a vital phenomenon which is the best path to perfect virtues- turned into an undisciplined beloved which became so popular that it had the last two centuries named after it (actually, of course, named after immorality). It had better be called the century of ‘self- strangeness.’ Is this not a cause-and-effect outcome? Indeed, for unlimited freedom first victimizes human character. It became so sacredly worshipped that even philosophers and humanity scholars glorified undisciplined freedom to the very highest aim of life. Books like About Freedom by John Stuart Mill are examples of such infatuation.
Due to a small mistake between the end and the means, anyone - even the least educated -spurred by internal desires or limited knowledge, took the advantage of the necessity of freedom of speech, and expressed such exclusive, definite opinions as if they were the sole creator, of man, and possessed every knowledge or experience in creation! The opinions were as greatly numerous as their so-called scholars. They were only whimsical brainwaves of philosophy and anthropology majors. On the other hand, they never thought about who should accept their ideas. Is everyone intelligent enough like Avicenna, Razi, Abu-Rehyan Biruni, Mowlavi, Bacon, Descarte, Kant or Hegel to be able to correctly evaluate such opinions? Or are most of them simple people who are prone to drown in the swamp of wrong ideas. Still, contradicting theories poured in the field of anthropology and human knowledge, which made all existing ideas doubted, and people lost most of their interest in such researches.
Some conscientious scholars could have suggested that in order to save man from such anthropological vertigo, all theories must first be analyzed alongside other fields and issues, and discussed with sincerely serious anthropologists in order to achieve a final, combined fact; when the theory showed reality, it can be publicly presented.
Even if someone in the West has come up with this suggestion - which we have not heard anything about yet -it has unfortunately been overruled.
All in all, having a society able to move towards the truth in complete independence is crucially necessary.
[39] Luqman (31): 25: “If they are asked, 'Who created the heavens and the earth? They will say, “God”.’
[40] The history of Spain on many occasions states that despite Islam - the highest of divine religions -various disruptive factors deviated people from Islamic realities and emptied them from any religion, logic or conscience. If social leaders around the world do not take action against corruptive factors in the name of ‘culture’, their people also will definitely undergo what happened in Spain .
[41] Mikhail Naima, the renowned contemporary Christian scholar thus describes Imam Ali (a) in his preface to George Gordac's Ali (a), The Voice of Human Justice: “The lives of great human beings over flows with experiences, lessons, faith and hope. They are high peaks that we are eagerly attracted to. As shining minarets, they light up the darkness along our way. They always remove any doubts about life, its aims and prosperity in us. Without such outstanding figures, despair would drown us; we would have raised the white flags in surrender ages ago: “O death! We are your prisoners. O death! We are your slaves. Annihilate us anyway you wish.” But we never lost hope, and never will. Thus, we will triumph, as the triumphant predecessors confirm it. One of them is Abu-Talib's son. Such glorious figures are always beside us (in other words, we live with them) although distantly in time and space. However, neither have time gaps made us unable to hear them, nor has spatial distance made them slip from our minds.”
The book mentioned above is the best proof to what we have stated. It includes the life story of one of the greatest human beings ever born to the Arab world, although he was never deservingly used. Islam did activate his capabilities, but he did not belong to Islam alone; if he did, how could his great spirit enflame the heart of a Christian writer in Lebanon in 1956, making him carefully study the Imam's life, and create a ballad-like biography of him?
Imam Ali's (A.S.) heroism was not confined to wars. He was also a champion of chastity, intelligence and indescribable beauty, deep humanity, flaming faith, grace and generosity, helping the poor, modesty and worshipping God.
[42] It is not from a solely metaphysical point of view that we pray that God may save all of mankind from the selfish and powerful. Consider the following story, which I have cited in several of my works due to its high significance. In 1949, Einstein thus described a discussion he had with a high American official: “Recently, I was speaking to one of America 's more intellectual, good-willing figures. I warned him about the new war that was threatening mankind, and that it could destroy the whole of humanity, and only super-national organizations could stop it. But he amazingly replied, “Why do you so strongly disagree with the end of mankind?!” Einstein adds, “Such a straightforward, abrupt answer implies the intense, internal suffering the world today has led to. Such answer can only come from somebody who has put much effort into balancing his character, but has failed, and even lost hope. It depicts the painful, innate isolation all humans are suffering from.” See Philip Frank, The Life of Einstein.
[43] A life which guides the compulsory forces and activities of man's natural life towards evolutionary goals by means of more freedom of choice, thus, the human character is gradually developed and guided towards the highest end of life having found the answer to six fundamental questions (Who am I? Where have I come from? Who am I with? Where am I? Why have I come here? Where will I go from here?) -contributing to the harmony of the whole universe, dependant upon divine greatness.

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