Notes continued (6)
"It is clear that in the present state of Europe a war between two Great Powers will probably involve all the six Powers of the Triple Alliance and the Triple Entente. Such a war would be disastrous not only to business, but to the very economic life of Europe. It would destroy commerce and industry. A great European war can best be avoided by the recognition that such a struggle would be suicidal to all the combatants; by the recognition that the economic interests of all nations are so much interwoven that the losses experienced by one nation will severely injure all other nations. All practical buisnessmen will recognise the truth of this assertion, and should endeavour to work for the preservation of the peace of Europe by joining the European Unity League.
"As the European Unity League is working for the Federation of Europe, it is working for the cause of Peace. Hence every man of peace, every banker, every merchant, every manufacturer, every employee, in short everyone who can lose by war should join the League.
"Wars are contrary to the ideals of Christianity. Therefore every devout Churchman of every denomination should join the League. In doing so he will do a Christian work.
"None are more interested in the preservation of European peace and civilisation than are the women of Europe, who in a war may lose their husbands, brothers and children. None stand to lose more by the general impoverishment and ruin which a great European war would produce than the women. Let them work actively for the Federation and the peace of Europe, and let them bring all their immense influence to bear upon the furtherence of this great and urgent reform. As the first step, every woman and every women's organisation should join the European Unity League.
"A great war will be most destructive to the European industries. It would create widespread unemployment and distress, and it would therefore most severely affect the working classes. Therefore every working man who loves his home, every working woman, and every labour organisation in the country should join the League in order to protest against avoidable wars, and in order to show that they are in favour of a policy which strives to make European war impossible and to abolish the enormous waste of the armament race.
"It is possible that the Federation of the British Empire will precede and finally form part of the Federation of Europe. But even if this should not be the case, it is not likely that the British self-governing Dominions would refuse to join such a Federation. Every imperialist can therefore join the League without inconsistancy, and without ceasing or lessening his efforts towards the Federation of the British Empire.
"Those who advocate an Anglo-American reunion, those who wish to bring about an alliance between the British Empire and the United States of America, will realize the fact that the League promotes their own ideals in a practical way. Therefore all who wish for an Anglo-American reunion should support it.
"The League is at present occupied in forming an International Advisory Council composed of leading and influential men and women. Their names will be published in due course. The constitution and the rules of the League will then be submitted to this Council for approval and amendment.
"Everybody who wishes to join the League should send in his or her name for registration. No charge will be made for registration, and no financial or other obligation will be incurred by those who desire to become members of the League. The temporary headquarters are at 39, St. James's Street, Piccadilly, London, S.W."
This new development of the Peace Ideal, this practical 'way out' of the morass of Militarism into which Europe has drifted, this great scheme for preventing the appalling disasters and suffering which menace us and our children, should appeal to the heart and intellect of every member of The Order of the Golden Age and of every reader of this magazine. I commend it to their most earnest consideration and invoke their hearty support.
There is much to be done before the project can be accomplished, but every one can help. Doubt needs to be removed, faith created, obstacles overcome, and ways and means devised.
Each new adherent will augment the battery of mental influence making for Peace. Each new worker in this Cause can enlist others by expounding the ideal and its advantages, and by emphasising the need which exists for its realisation.
Here is an opportunity for every philanthropist, humanitarian, patriot, zoophilist and follower of the Christ - a means of lessening the suffering of this world, and of increasing its happiness. For when the stupendous wealth, and aggregate of effort, that are now devoted to the arts and machinery of War are applied to the solution of our social problems, to productive industry, and to the benefit of mankind there will be a great and beneficient transformation of our social conditions, and a great augmentation of the welfare of the toiling and suffering masses of the people.
The Era of Peace and Fraternity is coming! Though long delayed, its advent is certain! Let us hasten it by doing what we can for its advancement and thus win for ourselves the blessing that is promised to those who labour and strive to bring about the fulfilment of the Divine Purpose.
Opening essay of The Herald of the Golden Age; April, 1914.
18) The Herald of the Golden Age; January 1915.
19) From The Vegetarian Messenger and Health Review of June 1918:
Lieut.-Col. Oldfield
We regret to note that Lieut. - Col. Josiah Oldfield has just been gazetted out of the Army on the grounds of ill-health. Dr. Oldfield was in camp as a Territorial officer when the War began and has been on active service ever since. He was first given the duty of raising a casualty clearing station, and then of forming and commanding a Field Ambulance. Between September and November, 1914, Col. Oldfield raised a complete Field Ambulance, and amongst the men who enlisted under his command were many fruitarian disciples of his own, and also ten clergy of the Church of England, ten officers of the Salvation Army and pastors of other denominations. Dr. Oldfield remained a strict fruitarian during the whole of his Army service, and never had a day off duty through illness, until, subsequently to his horse falling, he developed symtoms which have necessitated his retirement from the arduous duties of the Army. It is hoped, however, that after a short rest, his experience in medical dietics will be again available."
20) The Herald of the Golden Age; July 1916.
21) On an earlier occasion, Beard's Editorial Notes contained the assertion that: "When people know things and are convinced that they are right, it is impossible for them not to act in accordance with their knowledge".
The Herald of the Golden Age; April 1900.
22) The Herald of the Golden Age; August 1896.
23) It should be mentioned that The Vegetarian Messenger and Health Review which was published by The Vegetarian Society in Manchester and The Vegetarian News - the journal of The London Vegetarian Society - were both available in the main public libraries of the period.
24) The League was founded by two prominent figures within the vegetarian movement - Ernest Bell (1851-1933) and Henry B. Amos (1869-1946). The latter was an O.G.A. member and in 1945 wrote:
"I became a vegetarian when a young man and as a necessary expression of my religious life. I had read of the cruelties, uglinesses, and debasements of the flesh-meat traffic, and as a keen member of the Young Men's Christian Association I was humiliated at the thought that I was partly responsible for these seeing I ate flesh meat. I accordingly gave up the meat although the Y.M.C.A. doctor said I could not live three months without it.
Five years before this I had become acquainted with the vegetarian movement in Scotland as a boy in the shop of Provost John Storie, East Linton, who was a Vice-president of The Vegetarian Society and loved to discuss the subject with his customers. Mr. Storie was an ardent disciple with an alert and genial wit and seemed to me always to get the better of the argument. When over seventy he boasted he could climb Pencraik - a local hill a mile long - in fifteen minutes, and vault a five-barred gate. Of course he was scoffed at and dubbed a crank by most of the people, but he did not mind this, for his reading of history was that the most helpful revolutions in the world had been brought about by so-called cranks. It was not, however, till I read Carlyle that my inner nature was touched to the higher issues of things.