Born as the U.S.A.
Born as the U.S.A.
First of a Three-Part Series
By Kailasa Candra dasa
“Your appreciation of our Krishna Consciousness Movement is very nice, and, if you will carry this practical philosophy to the people of your great nation, you will know the result for sure that this movement is the solution to all the problems of life.”
Letter to Mahananda, April 27, 1970 (emphasis added)
His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada started his international Krishna consciousness movement in America. He made an incipient attempt to do this in Jhansi, India in the early Fifties (The League of Devotees). He initiated his first disciple, Acharya Prabhakar, at that time. However, the League did not take root, in no small part due to political intrigues that surrounded it, combined with non-cooperation from his godbrothers. However, Prabhupada, as the pure and perfect (prema-siddha) representative of the guru-parampara, was successful in America.
As such, despite its many sinful arrangements, America—specifically, the United States of America—holds a special place in the dovetailed, transcendental scope of absolute ontology and epistemology. Paradoxically, it was Americans, at least predominantly, who worked to undermine and destroy his movement from within, e.g., the eleven pretender mahabhagavats from the late Seventies and early Eighties.
The American disciples of Srila Prabhupada are therefore duty-bound to rectify this shocking setback. The men of this country are often pragmatic individuals who strive to improvise, adapt, and overcome the many obstacles that now shroud the Krishna Consciousness movement. Sometimes, Americans in general have been considered possessed of “Yankee ingenuity,” and this feature, although on the wane, has not yet disappeared. It is time now to be more resourceful and to dovetail this quality into the preaching effort, particularly in preaching to the devotees of the Lord. That will require preaching Krishna Consciousness as it is with renewed vigor and a rejuvenated spirit to Americans in a way that they can both understand and appreciate.
It will also require—and this is the revolutionary assertion of this article—to understand America as it is, not merely as you think or hope it is or as you like it. If you accept this hypothesis, then it is obvious that the astral body of the American egregor, stamped with the influence of planets and signs in certain houses at the time of its actual creation, possesses a fixed astrological horoscope. In order to know the chart of this great nation, we must know the time, place, and date of the momentous event. When ascertained, we shall then come to know the spirit and method of preaching the Absolute Truth here to this particular nation-state and related culture.
Now, much of what you read in this three-part series, particularly in Parts One and Two, will appear to be mundane, despite its occult significance. A motorcar is also mundane, but it can be employed in the absolute seva. Before being used, the better it is understood (and, accordingly, maintained), the better it can be dovetailed in order to accomplish transcendental objectives. We do not neglect the mundane, nor do we neglect understanding the jada; dravya-jnana can have real value when dovetailed. Part Three will validate and vindicate the apparent accumulation of mundane information tendered previous to its manifestation–be assured of this.
This first part of the series was commenced, in the form of a rough draft, on July 4th, 2010. Most Americans believe that their nation came into existence on this very date in 1776. Most Americans still also believe that the astronauts landed on the Moon. Certainly, that date (7-4-1776) must be afforded consideration in terms of it potentially yielding the horoscope. However, it is not the only contender. In fact, there are four distinct dates that must be given consideration, and we shall look at all four of them in this first part of the series. Even more importantly, we shall ascertain which of the four indeed marks the birth of the nation.
Here are those four:
1) July 2, 1776;
2) July 4, 1776;
3) March 1, 1781;
4) March 4, 1789.
On July 2, 1776, the Second Continental Congress assembled in Philadelphia, and it authorized the signing of the Declaration of Independence. On July 4, 1776, the assembled members of that Continental Congress actually signed the document, with John Hancock’s signature dominant in both style and placement. On March 1, 1781, the Second Continental Congress signed The Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union. On March 4, 1789, the New Hampshire legislature ratified the Constitution of the United States of America. It was the ninth state to do so, and, according to the last Article in the document (the Constitution), specifying when it would become the law of the land, when the ninth state ratified, the Constitution became its charter. These four dates all have some standing, at least potentially so in the beginning of our analysis. Now, let us proceed to see which one actually possesses the real standing, i.e., which one was recognized by the demigods as the time, place, and date.
July 2, 1776
Interestingly, the late siderealist, B. V. Raman believed this to be the date of the birth of this nation, and he constructed the janma-kundali accordingly. However, we cannot agree with him. Stating an intention amongst members of a group does not constitute any kind of guarantee for a long-term union desired by them. Of the four dates, this one is certainly the weakest. Nothing was signed on this date, and nations come into being when their founders formally sign documents verifying the event.
On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia moved in the Continental Congress that “These United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States.” A committee was appointed to draft a Declaration of Independence, and Thomas Jefferson was given eighteen days to write and polish the document. On July 2, 1776, most of the members of the Congress, having reviewed the document, stated their intention to sign it. However, it also still required some tweaking, and, had a cataclysmic argument between or amongst the members erupted in the interim, it may never have been signed. The power of intention is one thing; the actual event, another.
March 4, 1789
Let’s approach this analysis via the bookend method. We have looked at the first option (July 2nd), now let’s consider the last option, the moment that the Constitution was adopted. We have three signings of three documents left to consider here, and, of the three, inarguably the Constitution is, by far, the most important. None of the other two are cited in court cases, but the Constitution is quite frequently cited. All current law is supposed to be based upon it, either within one of its Articles, or within one of its many amendments, the appendices at the end of it.
The Constitution of the United States is sometimes dated Sept., 17, 1787, but it actually became effective on March 4, 1789 with ratification by New Hampshire, the ninth state to ratify the document at the level of its state legislature. Despite its great importance to the country, we get a strong hint that it does not designate the birth of the nation in its opening sentence:
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union . . .” Basic reason informs us that, if the document is forming a more perfect union, then it is improving upon a union that already exists. The counter-argument would be based upon the gerund (“forming”), However, although the Constitution certainly replaced the Articles of Confederation, can that actually be said to have created a nation?
We would also be obliged to check into the texts of its Articles to see whether or not there is any continuity there with the Articles of Confederation, which, at that time, were simply referred to as “the Confederation.” In Article VI, we find:
“All Debts contracted And Engagements entered into, before the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation.”
This means that the United States did not repudiate the debts it had contracted during the time it operated under the Articles of Confederation. Then again, the process by which this document, the Constitution, was ratified, clearly indicates that a union of states was in existence; furthermore, that this union is by definition willing to acquiesce to majority rule. We find this evidence in Article VII:
“The Ratification of the Conventions of nine States shall be sufficient for the Establishment of this Constitution between the States so ratifying the Same.”
In other words, all the member states of the Union—thirteen at that time—will be obliged to accept the Constitution when just nine of them ratify the new document at the state level in their assembled legislatures.
New Hampshire did so on March 4, 1789, and the Constitution then became the law of the land. Eventually, all thirteen state legislatures ratified (with Rhode Island being the last), but, as of New Hampshire’s ratification, the other states were duty-bound to accept the Constitution—whether they ratified it in their legislatures or not.
This important fact, in and of itself, conclusively proves that a Union that remained a continuing enterprise was already in existence when the Constitution came into being. In other words, neither the ratification nor the signing of the Constitution of the United States constitutes, from the astrological standpoint, the birth of this nation.
July 4, 1776
That leaves two contenders, so let’s first consider the favorite. Everyone knows—at least, every American knows—the date of July 4th, particularly since it is one of our major holidays and is celebrated everywhere with fireworks and other festivities. The date that The Articles of Confederation was signed is far less known; quite possibly only history buffs are really aware of it. Still, the demigods do not make decisions based upon human convention and vox populi; the laws of the universe function on a much higher octave than this.
Nevertheless, we cannot neglect the fact that the overwhelming majority of Americans consider the birth of this nation to be the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Besides such mass acceptance (or belief), there are some other factors.
Second Continental Congress was the resultant of British despotism in relation to the thirteen colonies formed in the New World. British colonial policy did not change despite various pleas, and the colonies drew close to war when there was an outbreak of fighting between farmers in Massachusetts and English troops; mostly, these skirmishes took place in Lexington and Concord. The Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia on May 10, 1775, and it took upon itself the incipient duties of a government. It was hopeful that it could unite the colonies.
Indeed, war on a mass scale did break out, and the Second Continental Congress encouraged the colonies to set themselves up as independent states. These sovereign states then went on to appoint diplomatic agents to represent them as independent states in foreign countries. As aforementioned, on July 2, 1776, it authorized the eventual signing of the Declaration of Independence.
Here’s a quote from World Book Encyclopedia: “Then it set about drawing up an outline for a permanent union of states, which resulted in the Articles of Confederation. . . It continued to work with less and less power until March 1, 1781, when a new Congress authorized by the Articles of Confederation took over its tasks.” (emphasis added) Yes, you are getting a strong hint where your author will be going with all of this.
The Declaration of Independence is striking for what it declares, and, just as importantly, for what it does not declare. We do find a specific reference to the colonies—no longer considered colonies in the document, having morphed into something else. What they transformed into is the issue.
The Declaration of Independence
The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America.
So, they call themselves united, and most certainly they are. However, have they become a nation in that unity? Even a cursory inspection of The Declaration clearly indicates that it is a unity solely for the purpose of separation:
“. . . to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another . . . they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”
“We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity . . . (of) our separation . . .”
“. . . by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as free and independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do.” (emphases added)
What does this mean? It means that, on that date (July 4, 1776), these thirteen former colonies declared that they were colonies no more. They declared that they were independent states. In effect, each of them, together in one document, declared themselves to be independent nation-states.
To use an example, the United States, Great Britain, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkey, Kuwait, and some other nation-states united against Iraq, and the regime of Saddam Hussein, in Desert Storm. However, does this mean that their unity in that war effort converted them all into a new nation-state?
We also notice that only names were penned onto The Declaration; individuals were not representing states, per se. As a matter of fact, no representative from the state of Georgia, one of the thirteen original states of America, signed the document; only twelve states entered into the pact that The Declaration represents. The final draft did not create a nation. The demigods can recognize when such an entity is created, and they did not stamp the influence of astrological planets on such an egregor. There are some words in the document that can be interpreted variously. The intent of The Declaration, however, is clear: All the States were declaring together that they were separate nation-states “with the full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do.”
And this brings us to the actual time, place, and date of the birth of this nation, viz., March 1, 1781, at noon, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union
“(The) ARTICLES OF CONFEDERATION was the agreement under which the thirteen original colonies became the United States of America. They were the supreme law of the land from March, 1781 until the adoption of the Constitution in 1789.”
World Book Encyclopedia (emphasis added)
The Articles of Confederation were completed on Nov. 15, 1777, and, at that time, were submitted to the states. Twelve states more or less approved them quickly; Maryland was the sole holdout. In this document, unlike in The Declaration, Congress was given legal authority to conduct foreign affairs, to declare war against an enemy nation-state, to create and sign treaties, to financially appropriate revenue to maintain an army, navy (and, eventually an air force and marine corps), to build national post offices, and, most importantly, to coin and borrow money.
The Constitutional Convention which met in Philadelphia in 1787 agreed to abandon the Articles of Confederation, and this was actuated by the adoption of the Constitution. However, as noted previously, this replacement charter (the Constitution) did not create or form a new union; it created, in its own words, a more perfect union. That means a less perfect union already existed; it had come into existence with the signing of the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union.
The Maryland General Assembly convened in Annapolis in the winter of 1781. It had previously demanded that states such as Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut (others, as well) relinquish any claims to outlying, western territories. These territories, if Maryland was going to agree to a union, had to be the property of the nation as a whole, not the property of any of the thirteen states. The aforementioned states all, in due course, acquiesced to Maryland’s demand.
Governor Thomas Lee in the Senate chamber, and in the presence of the members of both houses of the Maryland legislature, signed, on Feb. 2, 1781 “… an Act to empower the delegates of this state in Congress to subscribe and ratify the Articles of Confederation.” The Maryland legislature then adjourned.
The legal decision by Maryland to ratify the Articles was reported to the Continental Congress ten days later, on February 12, 1781. The formal signing of the Articles by the Maryland delegates took place in Philadelphia at noon on March 1, 1781. Article Thirteen of the document itself decreed that it could not become law until delegates authorized by the legislatures of all thirteen states formally signed it. This was recognized; festivities broke out in the afternoon after the Maryland delegation put pen to paper. Wikipedia describes it: “With these events, the Articles entered into force, and the United States came into being as a united, sovereign and national state.
Let us take a quick look at some of the articles of The Confederation, along with appropriate commentary to understand both their purport and import.
The stile of this confederacy shall be “The United States of America.”
Here it’s declared that a new nation, The United States of America, has come into being.
Each State retains its sovereignty, freedom and independence, and every power, jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this confederation expressly delegated to the United State, in Congress assembled.
The use of the word “sovereignty” here is anachronistic, simply thrown in as a sop to mollify those who were still fearful of this federal scheme. As will be shown subsequently, the individual states renounced their sovereignty when they signed the document; they no longer had powers previously claimed.
No State, without the consent of the United States, in Congress assembled, shall send any embassy to, or receive any embassy from, or enter into any . . . alliance or treaty with any king, prince, or state . . .
No State shall engage in any war without the consent of the United States, in Congress assembled . . .
The states no longer can create alliances with other nations, although, in The Declaration, they claimed this right. They can no longer make treaties with any other nation, and they can no longer declare war against any other nation-state.
The United States, in Congress assembled, shall also have the sole and exclusive right and power of regulating the alloy and value of coin struck by their own authority, or by that of the respective states; fixing the standard of weights and measures throughout the United Sates; regulating the trade . . .
The states no longer can regulate interstate commerce, and, even more importantly, they relinquish the power to coin money according to fixed standard.
These articles shall be proposed to the legislatures of all the United States, to be considered, and if approved by them, they are advised to authorize their delegates to ratify the same in the Congress of the United States; which being done, the same shall become conclusive.
This is the final Article of the Confederation and Perpetual Union. It clearly states that it does not become the law of the land, the governing document of a newly-created nation-state, until delegates from all of the thirteen states ratify it in the central Congress of the United States (not merely in their own state legislatures). When the Maryland delegates put pen to paper as the final state to verify (by their signing of the document), the demigods recognized the birth of a new nation.
To Be Continued
OM TAT SAT