The Idea of World-Union As an Alternative to a World-State

The extensive review of the tendency for development of human unity through the creation of a central administrative and controlling World-State, has led to the conclusion that such a result would eventually stamp out the diversity and creative impulses of a diverse mix of cultures, languages and ways of looking at things, and eventually lead to stagnation or even dissolution.  The challenge is then to find a different direction for the development of human unity which will not be subject to this type of negative set of consequences.  Sri Aurobindo suggests the possibility of a World-Union made up of separate nations joining together on some basis, rather than a World-State that eliminates the independence and diversity inherent in the nations of the world.

“The only means that readily suggests itself by which a necessary group-freedom can be preserved and yet the unification of the human race achieved, is to strive not towards a closely organised World-State, but towards a free, elastic and progressive world-union.  If this is to be done, we shall have to discourage the almost inevitable tendency which must lead any unification by political, economic and administrative means, in a word, by the force of machinery, to follow the analogy of the evolution of the nation-State.  And we shall have to encourage and revive that force of idealistic nationalism which, before the war, seemed on the point of being crushed on the one side under the weight of the increasing world-empires of England, Russia, Germany and France, on the other by the progress of the opposite ideal of internationalism with its large and devastating contempt for the narrow ideas of country and nation and its denunciation of the evils of nationalistic patriotism.  But at the same time we shall have to find a cure for the as yet incurable separative sentiments natural to the very idea to which we shall have to give a renewed strength.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Ideal of Human Unity, Part Two, Chapter 29, The Idea of a League of Nations, pg. 253