Pendle Hill Pamphlet 15, 1942
War Is The Enemy BookedPDF
A. J. Muste

A. J. Muste has been a Quaker spokesman for non-violence and peaceful resolution of conflicts. He is well known for his positions, yet his writings have not been widely available. As you can judge from this pamphlet Muste speaks with eloquence from a deeply felt conviction: "The point is that in a real sense conscience, the Inner Light, is the only guide among the complexities of life. What we know surely, and the only thing we can know, is that evil cannot produce good, violence can produce only violence, love is forever the only power that can conquer evil and establish good on earth."

Here he presents his understanding of the sources of evil, of the causes of war, and of the only possible way to peace: "The only explanation I have for this experience is that the law that evil can be overcome only by its opposite, i.e., by a dynamic, sacrificial goodness, is so basic in the structure of the universe, so central for an understanding of life and history, that if one stands at that center one sees things in clear focus."

A.J. Muste is convinced that he must act, that he must put himself in the way, because he can do no other. Both his actions and his words spring from a spiritual commitment and an understanding of the emptiness of the human condition: "Developing a consciousness of the reality of spiritual things and generating moral power is the supreme need of such a world."