The tragic experience of recent generations has brought to humanity an intense thirst for peace. Peace is now considered a good higher than many ideals for which people formerly gladly shed their blood. Contributing very much to this is the fact that war is not what it often was in the past, that is, a conflict between injustice and justice, but has become a conflict without meaning between which the injustice of various parties has used to appear just in the eyes of its followers, has caused people to lose faith in the existence of justice and to fail to see anything before them that is worthy of defending. Thus war, any form, seems to be something completely absurd.
This reluctance on the part of humanity for any kind of conflict would have been something admirable if it were the offspring of spiritual health. If injustice, hatred, and falsehood had ceased to exist, then peace would have been the consummation of human happiness. Unity would have been a natural and not an artificial result. But something totally different is noticeable. Today when everyone is speaking of peace and unity, self-love and hatred, injustice and falsehood, ambition and greed, are at their zenith. All — everyone in his own way — speak of love for man, of love for humanity. But there has never existed a greater hypocrisy than that so-called love. Because love towards something theoretical, for something imaginary, such as the concept «humanity», is equally theoretical and imaginary. It has no relation to love for the particular man we have before us. This love for a particular person, when it exists, is the only real love. It is the love for our neighbor that Christ asked.
This particular man with his imperfections and weaknesses, instead of being loved, has been hated in our time more than in any other age. Not only has he been hated, but he has been scorned and humiliated; he has been regarded as a «thing» without any particular value, a means for the attainment of «high goals», a particle of the mass. Those who speak the most of love towards man and humanity, of peace and union, are precisely those who hate their neighbor, their acquaintance, the most. They love man the creation of their own imagination; they do not love man the reality. This worship of the idol «man» is in reality narcissism; it is the worship of the ego.
It would be naivete, therefore, if one were to believe that the pacifist disposition that characterizes humanity today proceeds from love. These words about love are hypocrisy and self-deception. The desire for peace proceeds from the loss of ideals, from fear, and from the love of comfort. It is the desire to be left in peace to enjoy the good things of this earth. It is the conventional cooperation for the acquisition of goods which each person separately would not be able to acquire. It is a universal understanding upon something which has become the passion of the wincle earth: sensualism and materialism. It is a product of necessity.
The peace of which the world speaks is an unconditional capitulation of everything good and sacred and great, and the dominance of pettiness, mediocrity, and lukewarmness. It is the blotting out of the personality of individuals and of peoples. It is a marmelade of compromises and calculations, a sea of hypocrisy, indifference for the truth, the betrayal of everything holy and sacred.
War is a terrible thing, a result of the fall of man, and no one is about to praise it. But the peace for which the world is haggling is something infinitely more fearful. A fever is a very unpleasant thing, but it shows at least that the organism is reacting against something bad which has entered it. The peace which they wish to bring is not, unfortunately, that which comes from the victory over evil, but that which comes from defeat. It is the feverlessness of a corpse.
At bottom, the peace which men pursue is not only a peace of weapons. It is the peace of conscience. They wish to reconcile good with evil, justice with injustice, virtue with sin, truth with falsehood, in order to be able to make peace with their conscience.
—Dr. Alexander Kalomiros (Against False Union, Chapter One)