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The Globalization Reader, 5th Edition by John Boli, Frank J. Lechner

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63 World Citizenship Defined

World Service Authority

The world … universally outgoing, conceptually unbounded, the planet dynamically, synergistically and organically one with itself and the cosmos.

Citizenship … the restrictive rights and duties within a given social structure.

The two words together seem paradoxical. “You can educate either the citizen or the man,” wrote Thoreau. Yet in their union lies the potential success of the human species; in their non-union lies the demise of a fatally-flawed creature which could not overcome its self-imposed global anarchy.

This is the perennial mystery of the conceptual “joining” the perceptual. How and where does spirit indwell in the body?

World citizenship today implies the joining of the perennial wisdom of humankind with up-to-the-minute geo-political and geo-technical reality.

The term ‘world citizen' can be better understood with a negative definition than with a positive one. If a citizen of a state with political frontiers is expected to pay allegiance to the government of the state to which he or she belongs and is expected to take arms against aliens who might invade the territory of the state, a world citizen recognizes the entire world as one's state and in principle does not recognize any member of one's own species as an alien to the world community to which oneself belongs. Such a person recognizes the earth as one's sustaining mother, the innate inviolable laws of nature as one's protecting father, all sentient ...

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