...and one of the oldest

Ways toward peace have been suggested since ancient days in scriptural and secular writings long familiar to the West. The documentary background to United Nations peace efforts also includes philosophers in the East, such as China's Mo T^i, sometimes called Mo Tzu. Almost 2,500 years ago, roughly when Aristophanes was calling for peace in terms of Greek comedy, Mo was advocating ``a love that grasps or unites many in its embrace'' (as represented by the two Chinese characters he used). Here, in James Legge's 1895 translation, is a key passage set down by one of Mo's disciples.

``If princes were as much for the States of others as for their own, what one among them would raise the forces of his State to attack that of another? -- he is for that other as much as for himself. If they were for the capitals of others as much as for their own, would one raise the forces of his capital to attack that of another? -- he is for that as much as for his own. If chiefs regarded the Families of others as their own, what one would lead the power of his Family to throw that of another into confusion? -- he is for that other as much as for himself. If, now, States did not attack, nor holders of capitals smite, one another, and if Families were guilty of no mutual aggressions, would this be injurious to the kingdom, or its benefit?'' It must be replied, ``This would be advantageous to the kingdom.'' Pushing on the inquiry, now, let us ask whence all these benefits arise. Is it from hating others and doing violence to others? It must be answered, ``No''; and it must likewise be said, ``They arise clearly from loving others and doing good to others.'' If it be further asked whether those who love others and do good to others hold the principle of making distinctions between man and man, or that of loving all, it must be replied, ``They love all.''

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