The online edition of Share International magazine presents a selection of items from the printed edition. Each online edition includes a complete article by Benjamin Creme's Master. Most other articles reproduced here, covering a wide range of topics, are excerpts. The online edition usually also includes a selection of Questions and Answers, Readers' letters, and photographs of Signs of Maitreya's presence.
See the full table of contents of the printed edition at the foot of the page.
From the inception of Share International magazine, Benjamin Creme’s Master provided articles to be published not only at the time they were written, but also whenever appropriate according to world circumstances. The following article, first published in March 2015, points to a challenging time ahead for humanity. It warned then of a rapidly changing world and held out the possibility of our being able to rise to the challenge. The question now, several years later, must be: when will we “establish the new out of the old”?
The time immediately ahead will puzzle many, so quick will be the changes, political, economic and social, which will manifest, and so frequently will these changes occur.
For many, anxiety and puzzlement will be the major response. Intrigued or alarmed by the nature and extent of these changes, many will see them as signs of a transforming society, while others will fear and resent the new manifestation. People everywhere will act warily, unsure of the right direction for them to take.
Not for long, however, will men act thus. They will find that it is a truly changing world in which they live, beset with greater challenges to their beliefs and values.
Thus will men begin to establish the new out of the old, and to demonstrate their growing ability to respond to the challenges of the time.
These articles are by a senior member of the Hierarchy of Masters of Wisdom. His name, well-known in esoteric circles, is not yet being revealed. Benjamin Creme, a principal spokesman about the emergence of Maitreya, was in constant telepathic contact with this Master who dictated his articles to him.
At every lecture he gave around the world, and virtually every day of his life, Benjamin Creme was asked numerous questions covering a vast range of topics. We draw on this large recorded resource and present here a selection of previously unpublished answers provided over the years by BC and his Master.
The aim of Maitreya is to bring humanity to God, in terms of recognizing the divine in yourself, in ourselves, and expressing it. That means living as if you are that God. That does not involve joining a religion and becoming a nun or a monk, but it does involve acting in relationship to everyone you are in contact with as if they are oneself. To do this we must live in peace, without fighting and competing. Competition must be banished from our ideas of living together. Every single person is a potential God and every individual has his or her own rhythm of growth — some faster, some slower, some develop along one line, while others may develop differently. And in this way all aspects of life are covered.
One of the major problems a number of developed countries face is that of immigration — the arrival of immigrants. The USA and some European Union countries have put up huge barriers, walls around their countries, along the borders. And what they are saying really is, “They aren’t allowed to come here. We don’t want them. They come here and take our jobs. They’re a nuisance and there are too many of them. Our country isn’t big enough for thousands of immigrants to come in.” In the meantime, more and more refugees and immigrants keep coming, looking for work. They come from the developing world, where they haven’t got work, to the developed countries, hoping that they will find work, either legally, or if not, then illegally. Britain is the centre of the British Commonwealth of nations as a consequence of being an empire in the past. At one time, anyone from one of the Commonwealth countries was allowed to come to Britain; it was more or less as if you were British. Now, it is made difficult and people from those countries are made to wait for years. And there’s a huge wall or obstacles between you and those wanting to come in.
But all countries which have had wave after wave of immigrants over the centuries coming into their societies have been enriched by them. The immigrants have brought a different quality to the local life — different cuisine, different ways of thinking, different religions; different in many ways we wouldn’t expect. They have enriched the quality of our lives. And in terms of America, the immigrants have made modern America.
Maitreya’s work is to inspire humanity to see this, to see and accept that we are One and that we should aim at living in the one world as one group, called mankind. He has to teach humanity how to live and we have to respond. We have to see it as necessary as if we had thought of it ourselves. Maitreya has the task of advising humanity but we have the task of seeing the reality of what He says and that it is not just another idea but an absolutely essential action on our part. And we have to want it. We have to welcome and be glad of it. We need to accept the principle of sharing and put it into practice.
It has not yet reached its end. It will go on and on. It will go up and down. There will be slight improvements, especially in the monetary sense but from the point of view of work and industry there will be such a collapse that it will take years and years to put to rights countries like America and Europe. Jobs are being lost by the hundreds of thousands every week. Think of what it must be like in developing countries. (Share International, September 2009)
Share International has a large reserve of unpublished letters which were confirmed by Benjamin Creme and his Master to be genuine encounters with Masters, or a ‘spokesperson’. We present a selection below.
The following happening took place twenty years ago (or more); I’m sorry I can’t remember exactly when. I have wondered on and off for years now if it was an appearance of Maitreya.
A friend and I were outside Friends House in London, coming to one of your talks. As we approached the door, a very distraught-looking young man came up to me. He said he had no money and that if he didn’t have enough by 8pm that night he would lose his place and would be out on the street. Of course, I felt for him and I gave him the money I had on me. That was it.
Again, I wondered if that young man (with a lovely face) could have been Maitreya.
(1) In the evening of 30 April 2004 in Yotsukaido-shi, Akira, a member of our Transmission Meditation group came back home and pulled to a halt. At that instant, before his eyes, Mr Creme passed by carrying a plastic bag. Mr Creme appeared to be on his way back from a supermarket. Akira was very surprised but immediately thought that he must be Maitreya. He got out of the car and immediately tried to follow him. But he was nowhere to be found. Was he Maitreya?
(2) On 15 May 2005, in order to go to Tokyo Transmission Meditation where Mr Creme would be, my friend and I were in seats on the train to Tokyo. On the way, a lady in her 50s with a black walking stick in her hand got on the train with her grandson. All the seats were occupied. He worried about her, saying, “Oh, grandma, what can I do? You can’t sit down”. They were standing in front of me and I gave her my seat. When I gave her my place she looked straight into my eyes saying thanks. Her expressionless face was so close to mine because she bent forward. I thought to myself, “She looks young. She’s neither beautiful nor ugly. Her face is really characterless.” From their conversation [we gathered] that she had broken her lower back in an accident in New York and had had an operation. Now she often went out by train as a rehabilitation exercise. She was talking in a ‘debonair’ way and said to her grandson, “At that time I was really helped by so many people.” After passing a few stations, a seat became available next to her; she moved and said to me, “Please sit down.” So I sat next to her and found out that her grandson’s face looked like an elementary school child but he was much taller than the average adult man. When they got off the train, she thanked me again, looking straight in my eyes; [I noticed] that her face was without any expression. At that time, I thought they were ordinary. But later when I saw my face in the mirror it reminded me of the lady’s face! Were they Maitreya and the Master Jesus?
We present here phenomena which, to the editors, are “signs of hope” and “signs of the time”. Fortunately, our current stock of phenomena confirmed as real and genuine by Benjamin Creme’s Master is fairly large. However, in future we will also present material which has not been confirmed. We undertake to be as thorough as possible in our investigation of each ‘miracle’ or ‘sign’ and will present them for your consideration only, since we cannot now make use of the confirmation and additional information which in the past was always provided by Benjamin Creme’s Master. Further details, when available, are given in the captions to the photographs.
We present a selection of quotations on the theme of ‘Courage and fearlessness.’ The quotations are taken from Maitreya (Messages from Maitreya the Christ, Benjamin Creme’s Master (A Master Speaks, Volumes One and Two), and Benjamin Creme’s writings.
The scourge of competition is based on two things: greed and fear. Greed is the outcome of fear. Fear is the basic, fundamental expression of that which is against life. When you take away fear you release the energy of life. (Benjamin Creme, The Art of Co-operation)
Thus will the people of the world inherit the birth right of freedom and justice that is their due. Thus will the voice of the people rise louder and clearer in the months and years ahead. (Benjamin Creme’s Master, from ‘The people’s voice heralds the future’)
You cannot take initiation, become initiate, while you live in fear. You can never become a Master until you have, not just courage, but the total absence of fear. You need courage to tackle the fear and to demonstrate in your life that forward looking, advancing impetus and effort of a true disciple. (Benjamin Creme, Maitreya’s Mission Volume Two)
John Lewis “believed that in all of us, there exists the capacity for great courage, that in all of us there is a longing to do what’s right, that in all of us there is a willingness to love all people, and to extend to them their God-given rights to dignity and respect. So many of us lose that sense. It’s taught out of us. We start feeling as if, in fact, that we can’t afford to extend kindness or decency to other people. That we’re better off if we are above other people and looking down on them, and so often that’s encouraged in our culture.
“He knew that every single one of us has a God-given power. And that the fate of this democracy depends on how we use it; that democracy isn’t automatic, it has to be nurtured, it has to be tended to, we have to work at it, it’s hard. But we have got to do something. As the Lord instructed Paul, ‘Do not be afraid, go on speaking; do not be silent, for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many in this city who are my people.’ Just everybody’s just got to come out and vote. We’ve got all those people in the city but we can’t do nothing.
“Like John, we have got to fight even harder for the most powerful tool we have, which is the right to vote. The Voting Rights Act is one of the crowning achievements of our democracy. It’s why John crossed that bridge. It’s why he spilled his blood. Let’s honor him by revitalizing the law that he was willing to die for. Once we pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, we should keep marching to make it even better.
“By making sure every American is automatically registered to vote, including former inmates who’ve earned their second chance. By adding polling places, and expanding early voting, and making Election Day a national holiday, so if you are someone who is working in a factory, or you are a single mom who has got to go to her job and doesn’t get time off, you can still cast your ballot. By guaranteeing that every American citizen has equal representation in our government, including the American citizens who live in Washington, D.C. and in Puerto Rico. They are Americans.
“So we are also going to have to remember what John said: ‘If you don’t do everything you can to change things, then they will remain the same. You only pass this way once. You have to give it all you have.’ As long as young people are protesting in the streets, hoping real change takes hold, I’m hopeful, but we cannot casually abandon them at the ballot box. Not when few elections have been as urgent, on so many levels, as this one. We cannot treat voting as an errand to run if we have some time. We have to treat it as the most important action we can take on behalf of democracy.”
Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, 30 July 2020
Sharing is the key to solving the problems that confront humanity today. Only through sharing can economic justice be achieved. Failing that, lingering injustice will feed divisions, tensions, possibly even war. But what exactly do we mean by economic justice? What are the concrete principles that should govern the sharing of resources?
Fairness in exchange
One possible way of envisioning economic justice is through the implementation of what may be called the ‘principle of fair compensation’. It corresponds to the idea that, within the great collective economic endeavour, everyone should receive a share commensurate to their contribution to the whole. This principle is inscribed in the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen of 1789, which states in its first article that “social distinctions can be founded only on the common good”. It is the very opposite of exploitation, which corresponds to a situation where some get less than what they contribute, because others in position of power unduly appropriate the fruits of their efforts.
Even though there is nowadays a wide consensus about the desirability of this principle, there is nevertheless disagreement over its concrete meaning. More precisely, the question is by which standard should one’s individual contribution be measured.
The dominant view, especially among economists, is that what matters is one’s productivity, i.e. one’s ability to create economic value. From that perspective, it is fair that a visionary business entrepreneur receives more than, say, a sales clerk, since the former contributes more to GDP than the latter. Because economic valuations are mainly driven by market forces in the current system, this vision tends to be conservative: it will consider as fair any inequality stemming from open competition on free markets.
One could however argue that market values are distorted, in the sense that they do not faithfully reflect the social usefulness of activities. Interestingly, the lock-downs in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic have highlighted the reality that some jobs (for example in the food and care sectors) are of vital importance, despite being of relatively low value from a narrow economic point of view, since they are poorly rewarded. Consequently, another interpretation of the principle of fair compensation is that one should receive according to one’s social usefulness, i.e. according to one’s ability to create use value, rather than market value.
But even that latter view can be criticized on the grounds that some are born more talented than others, and that rewarding talent is unfair, since it is not the result of one’s individual actions and decisions. A very gifted person will be able to contribute more to the common good than an average person, but does that justify a difference in income, if both have worked as hard over the course of their life? Hence, the third and most egalitarian interpretation of the principle of fair compensation is that resources should be distributed according to effort, the latter being defined as the personal sacrifice or inconvenience incurred in performing one’s economic duties.
Despite their important differences, these three variants of the principle of fair compensation all provide a criterion for determining how just is a given economic system (the one in which we live, or another historical or hypothetical one). If a system is thus deemed unfair, the logical implication is that it should be transformed so as to achieve a distribution of resources closer to the fairness principle. This redistribution can be considered as an act of sharing.
Satisfying human needs
Another way of conceiving sharing is through what may be called the ‘principle of need’. It corresponds to the idea that everyone should receive according to their needs. This implies that all the universal basic necessities should be granted to everyone: food, housing, healthcare, education, clothing, transportation, internet. … This also includes needs that are less universal and that can vary from individual to individual, either because of disabilities or life accidents that should be compensated for, or because of inclinations or special abilities that require some investment to be fully developed and realized. This principle was enshrined in Article 22 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948: “Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security and is entitled to realization, through national effort and international co-operation and in accordance with the organization and resources of each State, of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality.”
How does our current economic system measure up to this standard? Indisputably, it blatantly violates the principle of need: hundreds of millions do not have enough food to eat, not to speak of other basic needs, while tons of objects of questionable usefulness are produced every day. The system does not even fulfill conservative interpretations of the principle of fair compensation. The heart of the intellectual endeavour of Karl Marx was precisely to show that capital owners, because of their position of power, are able to seize a value that has been produced by others. More recently, feminists have highlighted the fact that women are paid less than men for identical skills and job contents, not to speak of unpaid domestic work. In the field of international relations, the ‘dependency theory’, pioneered by economists Raúl Prebisch and Hans Singer, has shown how poor countries are subject to an unequal exchange in their trade with wealthier ones.
A significant transformation of our economic system is thus in order if we are to realize the principle of sharing. What does that this imply for our policies and institutions?
First, the principle of need must be implemented so as to become an effective reality for all human beings. Fortunately, we’re not starting from scratch: in several countries, there already exist institutions that are directly inspired by this principle. One is social security, whose precise form varies across countries, but which typically provides monetary transfers to ensure that needs remain covered in various life situations (illness, unemployment, retirement, disability, parenthood). The other one consists of public services, which provide free or cheap access to various essential services (education, transportation, infrastructure, physical safety). These schemes, which are currently under attack through austerity policies should, on the contrary, be strengthened, expanded to cover more needs (food and housing being the obvious candidates) and be extended to all countries. They could also be complemented by a universal basic income.
The Amazon rainforest covers 3.4 million square miles, a little more than half the size of the USA and it produces 20 per cent of the world’s oxygen. It is the world’s largest tropical rainforest, and home to approximately 40,000 plant species and 1,300 bird species. The rainforest is also home to more than 30 million people and over 10 per cent of the world’s biodiversity. It is one of the greatest ‘buffers’ against the climate crisis, since the trees absorb carbon dioxide.
The Bolsonaro government is responsible for the greatest increase of deforestation and burning of the Amazon in Brazil’s history. It chafes at environmental protection laws and deliberately neglects its indigenous populations and has continued illegal threats to and murders of environmental activists and the destruction of indigenous peoples of the region.
In June this year , the country saw a 10.6 per cent increase in forest devastation compared to the same month last year. In the first half of the year, the increase was 25 per cent over the same period in 2019, reaching 3,069.57 sq km, an area equivalent to twice the size of the city of São Paulo, or slightly more than the size of Yosemite National Park which is 3,027 sq km. In 2019, according to the NGO Global Witness, Brazil witnessed one third of all tropical forest losses in the world.
Laws weakened, people and forest neglected
The growth of forest devastation is closely associated with the loosening or weakening of various environmental policies made possible under the current management of the Ministry of Agriculture, by Ricardo Salles. Changes in the laws remove the protection from the region’s indigenous populations whose way of life, so closely associated with the forest, is one of the main factors in the conservation and protection of the rain forest. Among the measures adopted by the current government, is one that allows the invasion, exploitation and commercialization of indigenous lands. Another, which puts the populated areas of the region at risk, allows pesticides to be used closer to villages and other population centers. The government also vetoed an emergency project to protect indigenous populations against Covid-19 which required the state to provide drinking water, hygiene and hospital beds for these populations, making the situation of these groups even more precarious in the midst of the pandemic. In addition, a massive decrease in the budget of the Ministry of the Environment was promoted, which limits the power of the agencies responsible for monitoring illegal burning and deforestation actions. Finally, laws are still being processed in the Brazilian Congress which, if approved, will promote a loosening of the rules for environmental licensing, in order to allow exploitative new construction projects in the region.
It is important to note that many of these measures were taken in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, with the Minister of the Environment himself stating that “the pandemic must be used to ‘passar a boiada’ (loosen) the country’s environmental laws”, calculating that, with the attention of the media focused on the number of deaths and new cases of the virus in the country, little attention would be given to these measures. …