Constitution of Damanhur
Damanhur is based upon diversity, change and action, which can be applied to everything within the community. The social structure and political system have been changed many times over the years, from the first communities to the present Federation of Communities. The Damanhurian decision making model has evolved, creating an efficient, democratic system with representatives and elected bodies based upon the participation of all citizens in public debate. Changes to the rules and regulations are ratified in accordance with the Constitution, which has been updated several times, the last version dating from 2007 is presently in force.
We share our constitution with you and invite you to use it as a base to create a model that works in your community life. Share your experiences with us here on the blog!
Constitution of Damanhur
Damanhur is a School of Thought founded by Oberto Airaudi and inspired by his teachings. Its structure is expressed through the four bodies called Meditation: tradition and ritual knowledge; Game of Life: experimentation and dynamics; ‘Tecnarcato’: continuous inner transformation; and Social: the social realization of such teachings.
The aims of Damanhur are: the freedom and re-awakening of the Human Being as a divine, spiritual and material principle; the creation of a self-sustaining model of life based on ethical principles of good communal living and love; the harmonious integration and co-operation with all the Forces linked to the evolution of Humankind.
The Constitution is the fundamental Charter regulating the Social Body, formed by Damanhur’s citizens. Damanhurian citizens dedicate their life to the application of the principles and aims indicated in the Constitution, and they make a commitment to respect and apply it in all its norms. The act of becoming a citizen takes different forms, corresponding to the choice and commitment of the individual.
The Communities represent the ideal form of union and communal living. They are inspired by principles of solidarity and sharing. The Communities as a whole are organized as a Federation.
Communities and groups belonging to different schools of thought may affiliate with the Federation, as long as they are inspired by the same aims.
Out of the creation of shared Tradition, Culture, History and Ethics, the People is born.
1. The citizens are brothers and sisters who help one another through trust, respect, clarity, acceptance, solidarity and continuous inner transformation. Everyone is committed to always extending to others the opportunity to reach higher.
2. Each citizen makes a commitment to spread positive and harmonious thought, and to direct every thought and action towards spiritual growth, putting ideals before personal interest. Each person is socially and spiritually responsible for every action they take, as everybody is aware that each act is multiplied and reflected all over the world through the Synchronic Lines.
3. Through community life, Damanhur aims at developing individuals whose reciprocal relations are regulated by Knowledge and Consciousness. Fundamental rules of life are common sense, thinking well of others, kindness, sense of humor, optimism, and the welcoming and exaltation of diversity. Every citizen is expected to be capable of self-control, of purity in thought and actions, and of making mature choices. Those citizens who wish to engage in a recognized love relationship, make a public announcement to their fellow citizens.
4. Work has spiritual value and is understood as a gift of oneself to others. Through it, everyone takes part in the spiritual and material activities of the people. Each citizen offers a part of their time in activities of common interest, especially in social volunteering activities and Terrazzatura (devotional work within Damanhur). Every task is precious and carries the same dignity.
5. Damanhur promotes research and fosters and encourages experimentation and renewal in every field of knowledge, as long as it is expressed in a harmonious form. Citizens improve their education, and widen and deepen their knowledge in the fields of research, art, work and leisure activities.
6. Spirituality, research and ecology inspire all relationships with the environment, also through the use of appropriate technologies. Every Citizen lives in communion with nature and the subtle forces which inhabit it. Everyone is committed to respect and preserve resources, and to avoid as far as possible forms of pollution and waste. Citizens put into practice rules of life suitable for harmonious physical, mental and spiritual development; they respect their own body, take care of it and nourish it harmoniously, refraining from any form of substance abuse. They ensure the orderliness and cleanliness of their environment.
7. The People is a single entity in constant evolution, the organic sum of all the single individualities; it holds and synthesizes all the experiences, thoughts and feelings expressed within itself and makes them a common cultural, ethical and spiritual wealth.
8. Every Damanhurian citizen takes care of their own economic maintenance, and contributes with their resources and work to support the Federation of Communities, in harmony with the principle of sharing. Individuals who withdraw from citizenship do not make any financial claims against it, and have no right to be reimbursed by it.
9. Damanhurian citizens prepare spiritually and socially the environment in the best possible way for the birth and growth of children. To this aim they prefer to plan the birth of children. Damanhurians educate children to be free and autonomous individuals, providing them with the instruments necessary to express and develop their individual characteristics. This is done in harmony with the shared pedagogical guidelines. All resident citizens participate in the education of children, in their care and economic maintenance.
10. Whosoever wishes to become a citizen of Damanhur must present a written request outlining their reasons. If the applicant possesses the basic qualities to become a Citizen, the person will be allowed to begin the probationary period, in the manner agreed upon with the applicant themselves. From that moment on, applicants are to observe this Charter and the other social rules. The ‘Concession of Citizenship’ can take place only after the applicant has demonstrated a knowledge of the principles and cultural heritage of the People. An individual will cease to participate in the citizenship process by withdrawal or by exclusion if serious reasons or cases of misconduct make it impossible to continue the relationship.
11. The highest authority of Damanhur is represented by the King/Queen Guides. They coordinate the Bodies of Damanhur, and guarantee a constant pursuance of the ideal aims and spiritual goals in every manifestation of social life. They direct choices and emanate laws on those subjects of interest to all Damanhurian citizens. Their unanimous opinion is binding for every individual, group or organization. They are periodically elected by the members of the Body of Meditation according to the rules determined within it.
12. The functions regarding control of the observance of the regulations are carried out by the College of Justice. Every Citizen has to respect its decisions. The College of Justice may suspend or annul illegitimate acts by any other body or office. It instructs and defines disciplinary procedures in cases of violation of constitutional norms. It carries out functions of appeal in case of disciplinary procedures issued by another body or office, in the modes and forms provided for by the federal laws. It watches over social processes, and suggests the elaboration of norms that are suitable for collective and individual development. Any controversy whatsoever among citizens and between citizens and Damanhur and its bodies will be subject, with the exclusion of any other jurisdiction, to the competence of the College of Justice, which will judge fairly, with equitable consideration and discretion, and its ruling will be final. The Members of the College of Justice are periodically elected by the members of the Body of Meditation according to the rules determined within it.
13. The citizens organize themselves in communities, within the forms established by the federal laws. Every community has its own territory, its own population and autonomy. Each community aims at reaching complete self-sufficiency, and its population must not exceed 200/220 individuals. The government of each community is elected periodically. Each Community may set up bodies and promulgate the rules it deems necessary to function, having regard to the Tradition and to the superior interests of the whole population. All citizens commit themselves to respect the laws of each community, when they are present on its territory. The citizens residing in Damanhurian communities, and those who are present in a Damanhurian territory, do not smoke, do not abuse alcohol and do not use drugs.
14. Communities or groups inspired by principles and aims compatible with those expressed in this Charter can affiliate with the Federation of Communities. The King/Queen Guides establish the modalities of association with the Federation.
15. The norms of execution of the present Charter must not contain measures that are contrary to it. The discipline of all matters relating to the whole population is carried out by means of Laws. Any revision of rules contained in this Charter is to be approved by those who belong to the Body of Meditation, according to rules decided within it. In every case where the interpretation of the existing norms is questioned, the resolution is adopted by the Guides, after consulting the College of Justice, and expressed according to the principles of the Tradition.
Damanhur, December 2007