Original Document
Original Document
Violet Oakley, Foreward to the Portfolio (Part 2), 1922.

The following is a brief Essay on SPIRITUAL ARMAMENT written in London in 1912 when I was at work upon the Theme for the Series of Paintings in the Senate Chamber:

AN EXAMPLE was indeed "set up to the Nations" by the astonishing courage and "Faith of the Saints" who thus actually founded a State on absolute and sole reliance upon those invisible weapons of unseen Power –that unseen Presence of Divine Love. Their demonstration was Its proof. The essential correlative of this Divine Principle in Man (as understood and testified to by these Early Quakers) was, to them, the refusal to bear any carnal weapon.

We must drop the carnal sword, they taught, ere we are completely free to grasp the Sword of Spirit, the Spiritual WORD of LOVE. This holy Word must first be thought, and then spoken. The Power of this Word operated scientifically, first upon the minds and hearts, and then upon the hands of the supposed enemies, disarming them of their own fears and thus causing them to "put up their swords" and, with awe and wondering, to grasp instead, the hands of FRIENDS, falling at the feet not of Men, but of LOVE. What else but this great Truth could so have sanctified the ground upon which these alien peoples thus stood, facing one another unarmed, bound only in a perpetual PEACE?

IN the mere contemplation of this astonishing and unprecedented Example we stand ourselves, to-day, abashed. We seem to come into the presence of an Individuality as clear-cut and powerful as it is unseen; for the Founder of the State can no more be removed from that State than can "one" be divorced from its own multiples.

LET fearful and jealous Nations arm themselves with Iron and Lead to the teeth; what thickness of Plate-armour can keep out the Wireless, immaterial, spiritual rain of the shot of LOVE? With what carnal contrivance can they possibly defend themselves from this irresistible onslaught of right-thinking?

IN the Museums of today how we marvel at the Armour worn by men of the Middle Ages! "How did they wear it?" we ask; "and when they had succeeded in putting it on, how did they ever move or fight or wield their cumbersome weapons?" It is indeed a mystery to us, and we laugh at the mental picture thus drawn up – of impeded movement and clumsy stroke, and mutual rolling in the dust – from sheer weight of weapons.

IF there be, instead, this Spiritual Equipment, owned and worn and proven by the Quakers of the Seventeenth Century, both defensive and offensive, why is it not more fully understood and so rendered available in the World to-day?

"My People are destroyed for lack of knowledge."

It is indeed a question of Armament, a burning Question. And this SPIRITUAL ARMAMENT is to be had without money and without price or tax,– and yet it is the most costly of all, and that is the reason that the Nations seem not ready to adopt it.

HOW many billions per year is each Nation, at present, expending upon its military establishment? And how much would it cost to do away with this old method in order to adopt the new? How much?

The Ignorance and Superstition of the Centuries:
It would cost the Lusts and Passions of the Beasts:
It would cost the Fear and Distrust of Other Peoples:
All the Envies and Murderings and Hypocrisies in the World.

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