“How Universal is the UN Declaration of Human Rights?” Soteria International Spiritual Human Rights Conference, Copenhagen 2016

Posted: December 14, 2016 / in: Blog / 2 comments

The near 70 year existence of The UN Declaration of Human Rights has revealed numerous points on which the Declaration should become subject to revision which will indeed make it a valuable means of defining and protecting the universal human values for the harmonious unification of the global community. The 9th Annual Spiritual Human Rights Conference held on 9th December in Copenhagen, Denmark, discussed the lack of effectiveness of the existing Human Rights protection systems, the Declaration itself, and revealed inherent flaws which prevent it from having a universal character. The recent discoveries of science, which is validating increasingly more the spiritual dimension of our earthly existence and pushing the frame of life beyond the physical world, leaves the current Human Rights Declaration outdated and insufficient. As a consequence, the psychic, mental and spiritual rights of human beings remain subjected to abuses and violations.

On 10 December 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), the first global enunciation of human rights. In honour of this, Human Rights Day is celebrated annually on 10 December.

This year, on the eve of Human Rights Day, a conference was organized by Soteria International, which gathered representatives of spiritual movements, human rights advocates, scholars and politicians to discuss the important topic: “How Universal is the UN Declaration of Human Rights?”

The first Spiritual Human Rights Conference organized by Soteria International back in 2008, on the day of the 60th anniversary of the UN Declaration of Human Rights, was a hallmark of the vital mission this organization has undertaken – bringing awareness to the fundamental importance of the spiritual dimension of human existence, which should be seen as an integral part of the Human Rights debate and protection.

Soteria’s opening statement at this year’s conference underlined the fact that the issue of introducing an efficient system of protection of Spiritual Human Rights is now, in times when the world’s many cultures face each other at an unprecedented scale, more valid than ever. Despite the efforts made over the years by Soteria and other organizations which have begun to see the significance of this dimension of Human Rights, the status of Spiritual Human Rights still has a long way to go to be recognized.soteria international

The presentations made by the conference’s speakers left a clear impression of the inefficiency of the current Human Rights protection systems not only with regards to the spiritual aspect of life – both at the legislative and executive level.

Lack of unity between national and international Human Rights institutions, their powerlessness in preventing human rights abuses, and the profound lack of understanding of the spiritual reality which makes the system persecute spiritual practitioners while paradoxically allowing the growth of true dangers for humanity’s freedom and its realizing inherent potentials – were among the subjects presented by the participants of the conference’s round-table discussion panel.

It seems clear that given these revelations, which are coming from representatives of such a varied array of backgrounds – European Parliament, European Council, anti-racism organizations, religious and spiritual self-development movements – point to the fact that omitting the spiritual aspect of human life might be the important reason for which the current initiatives aimed at efficiently ensuring the preservation and protection of the fundamental Human Rights – which is the foundation for sustained, harmonious growth of human civilization – has been failing at this task.

The spiritual perspective is a necessary aspect which has to be taken into consideration if globalization is to become a movement towards the beneficial, unifying expansion of our human civilization, realizing its universal destiny, rather than a cancer which threatens to dissolve its valuable components – national entities – leading eventually to its destruction.

In light of this urgent need, marked by the continuous Human Rights abuse of spiritual practitioners, which we continue to witness despite the great efforts made by initiatives such as Soteria International, I would like to re-post an article that revises The UN’s Declaration of Human Rights which I published in 2008, prior to the first Spiritual Human Rights Conference. The issues it points out are even more valid now than they were at the time it was first published.

The revelations of the recent conference bring hope that perhaps now it can serve as a valuable contribution to the inevitable emendation of the existing Human Rights paradigm, ensuring their truly universal character and an efficient system of their protection.

Participants at the 2016 Spiritual Human Rights Conference at Verdens Kultur Centret Copenhagen, Denmark

Participants at the 2016 Spiritual Human Rights Conference at Verdens Kultur Centret Copenhagen, Denmark

 

Towards a Revised Version of the Universal Declaration

of Human Rights

Originally published on November 27, 2008

 

In this time of information, in the civilization of holography and quantum mechanics, to claim that one can stay out of the range of transformation without being affected by it is at least a proof of not being able to keep up with the pace.

From the following comments one can easily see that the declarations we are making are often not sustained by real knowledge and by the real situation in the world. In many situations the initial Universal Declaration of Human Rights is at risk of being considered just a demagogic work, especially since there were and still are so many breaches in this field of human existence.

Some scholars might say that we do not need to talk about philosophy in this domain that is practical and pragmatic, but we rather talk about politics which has something to say. This is another naïve approach and does not reflect the scientific spirit of our time. Since this current approach to human rights has not been successful in 60 years of existence, recent events showing that there is still much to do in this area, maybe it is time NOW to see the problems of Human Rights from a perspective that will include some of the deep roots and in finding these roots to maybe eliminate the problem. One cannot continue to ignore the fact that “the way you see the problem is a part of the problem if not all of it”. Therefore we have to reconsider the very notions that constitute the foundation of the concepts of human rights.

Before starting we have to note that in the last centuries the highest number of crimes against human rights was made by the state itself and therefore we have to consider from a completely different perspective the role of the state in the issue of human rights and even to create a system to protect the citizens against the abuses of the state. Of course this issue was addressed before and there are some organisations that are trying to do this, but the reality in this field shows that there is much to improve and sometimes even the perspective needs to transform. This issue has to go together with the problem that is born out of putting the state as the guardian of human rights since in some situations this is like putting the “wolf to guard the sheep”. The problem can be solved by leaving human rights in the hands of a system that does not depend on the state and the state will just become a player in the system, not the “referee”.

This issue is of paramount importance and it is a subject of a large platform of debates and reflections of people coming from all levels of human existence, thus it is not only destined for politicians and a handful of human rights activists.

NOTE: In the following text, italic marks the original text of the Declaration and the bold italic sections are subjects of observations.

UN DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS

“On December 10, 1948 the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the full text of which appears in the following pages. Following this historic act, the Assembly called upon all Member countries to publicize the text of the Declaration and “to cause it to be disseminated, displayed, read and expounded principally in schools and other educational institutions, without distinction based on the political status of countries or territories.”

PREAMBLE

Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world, Whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people, Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law, Whereas it is essential to promote the development of friendly relations between nations, Whereas the peoples of the United Nations have in the Charter reaffirmed their faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person and in the equal rights of men and women and have determined to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom, Whereas Member States have pledged themselves to achieve, in co-operation with the United Nations, the promotion of universal respect for and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms, Whereas a common understanding of these rights and freedoms is of the greatest importance for the full realization of this pledge,
Now, Therefore THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY proclaims THIS UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, to the end that every individual and every organ of society, keeping this Declaration constantly in mind, shall strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms and by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance, both among the peoples of Member States themselves and among the peoples of territories under their jurisdiction.”

Teaching and education is the only viable way to create the real basis of human rights. The violation of human rights takes place due to flaws in the education system and thus the accession into the higher levels of the social power of elements that are poorly educated. Here we have to emphasize on a reform at the level of the educational system that will have to include the spiritual education as well as an education that is based on “human development” and not “goal achievement”. These two main directions (introducing the spiritual education at all the levels of the society and reforming the educational strategy) will ensure the true basis of the education that later will result in a natural awareness upon human rights. We can say analogically that the “wolf” will know better his duties and the “sheep” will know her rights.

Nowadays we are confronted with an accentuation of the problems regarding human rights even in western society and this happens for some particular reasons. In the modern day we have been sure that human rights have been respected in the western world and that we are “champions” in this domain. Yet upon closer inspection we can observe that the problems facing human rights are just moving to other levels of existence that are emerging now and for which the established legislation and social paradigm is no longer valid.

Are we discovering new dimensions these days? Are we moving toward another universe that is different than what people were experiencing some ages ago? The answer is YES and NO in the same time. In reality we are just changing the way we see things and this is drastically affecting the reality in which we live. An act of cowardice was very difficult some hundreds of years ago and when it happened it was not normal, it was clearly “visible” in the eyes of people because of the way most of the people embraced a certain set of moral values. Nowadays an act of cowardice is normal in many situations and is even skilfully justified in front of the public. Thus the one who becomes a leader of a group of people can at any time misuse the power given to him in a hidden way, trying to cheat the people he is supposed to serve. And we call this politics. Due to this emphasis on the rational mind and the scientific spirit, getting away more and more from the human part of us – that is responsible for “common sense” – modern people can do amazingly bad things in the name of some good ideals and principles. As a witness for this statement are staying the existence of the mass manipulation in the modern era, the atomic bomb, the genetic manipulation for profit and so on. The partisans of the so called “scientific spirit” are unfortunately serving as a shield for covering those that are using this decrease in common sense (that is resulting from over considering the rational mind as the ultimate level of human evolution and ignoring the spiritual values that are born out of individual development) in order to put forth in the world their individual interests irrespective of human values and thus severely violating human rights.

“Science without conscience is but the ruin of the soul,” said Francois Rabelais. Prior to the modern time and modern view upon life, people were more in touch with the values of the soul, the human values, and thus they were balancing this rational mind, rarely allowing excesses to take place. The more these values are forgotten the more we are exposed to create an environment that in the long run will work against us. At this level we have to realize that the human values have to be integrated as a part of our education, as a part of our life and training.

The education that is specializing people, making them learn more and more about less and less things, is creating some “idiot savants”. These savants are the ones who will invent the atomic bomb and afterwards continue to perfect it. A broad platform of education, that includes the humanistic and spiritual values will naturally give the humans a perspective in life that will reject by default any form of tyranny, abuse or violation of human rights, not because of creating conditionings of behaviour, but simply because of a new capacity of understanding the consequences of their actions at a much deeper level.

On many occasions the scientists who were inventing a terrible weapon were not aware of the consequences of their invention. Many times when a banker is speculating and in this way he is stealing money from some people, he is not completely aware of the consequences of his actions upon those people and even upon himself. Such a person does have a healthy set of values and this leads to monstrous actions. When we say awareness we are not talking about the calculation of how many lives the bomb can take or how many salaries are lost due to a financial scam. We are referring here to the awareness upon the human dimension of the act, to put yourself in the position of the victim. This kind of awareness comes with a vast education that develops the human dimension. The soldiers in the Iraq war reported that when shooting innocent civilians they imagine that it is a computer game and that make the things easier. Those that didn’t manage to do this trick are the tens of thousands that are now suffering the “post war syndrome” that makes them handicapped for life. Many people need this mental replacement of reality and it becomes nowadays one of the social “disease” that is about to come to public awareness. The virtual reality that many people prefer already makes victims in many areas of life such as couple relationships. At this level the interaction with the other one is most of the time a superimposition of some models that are collected from movies and other “sources” and it is not at all the experience of reality. This leads to many divorces and separated couples and generally to couple relationships that are searching in the darkness for a spark of happiness.

This unawareness that exists nowadays leads to one of the most dramatic infringements on human rights one can imagine: the human rights of the future generations! If we are here and now and we use this planet as we like, it is also because the previous generations had given it to us in good shape. But the completely irresponsible environmental behaviour (due to profit oriented and materialistic thinking) leads to the deterioration of the living conditions of the future generations of human beings. Should they not be protected by the same human rights? Are they not like us, even with these mysterious ties of time? What if we will discover a genetic mutation that will make our life in this generation exceptional but will make our children crippled, will it be moral to produce such genetic manipulation? The human rights of the future generations have amazing implications that we are not aware of and this idea is just an example of the unawareness that exists nowadays with regard to the consequences of our actions upon us, the world and the time because considering such an important and delicate matter and the human rights of the future generations, implies a vast understanding of the consequences of our daily activity.

In this context it is not at all amazing to see all the abuses that take place against humans these days, to witness all the violations of human rights, since the awareness upon the consequences of our actions is so low and it is not cultivated as a high value of the modern world. This awareness has to be done through the educational system, creating an education that is encyclopaedic and will allow everyone to be integrated into the world and thus to understand better the consequences of our actions from many perspectives and how they will affect themselves and the world. This will also make possible that most humans will be more reliable and will not easily fall prey to those who want to manipulate them for any interest. The more comprehensive people’s education is the less possibilities there will be for the violation of human rights since either the one with the power or the victim will have a chance to wake up before all is done and it is too late (thus avoiding the many situations that we have had these days when we have realized too late what we have done). Spiritual education is a part of this complete education and will ensure the coverage of the new areas of our life that become more and more important and that are rapidly coming into public awareness. The present commentaries on the initial declaration of human rights will underline the importance of such a spiritual education and what that will imply.

Article 1

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”

“Know the Truth and the Truth shall set you Free” were the famous words that will be the solution to our problem with the human rights. As long as we don’t eliminate ignorance, there is no real freedom in the world and there will always be one that will be tempted to abuse the trust of millions that are innocent and ignorant. In order to make human rights a constant value of our civilization we have to eliminate the causes for the infringements and these causes are rooted in the ignorance of both the tyrant and the victim.

For the above mentioned reasons we can say that before any guarantee of freedom one has to remove ignorance! This is the fundamental right of any human being before talking about any other rights! Promising freedom to an ignorant person (or a person that is ignoring a part of the reality in which he lives) is just a demagogical lie. There will always be someone who exploits the “blind spots” and enslaves that person (and that someone will in fact be another kind of ignoramus).

The necessity for the creation of the spirit of brotherhood was often emphasized on in order to create a better world. But it is also known that the spirit of brotherhood in the world can be aimed at by individuals who are not exclusively attached to their individuality, to their individual survival. That will require educating people in realizing that we are not only the body and the little experience assigned to the body by life itself, that our existence has a higher goal than surviving and satisfying the pleasure of the senses.

Talking about brotherhood (with hope that this will be applied) in a materialistic world dominated by terrorism is equal to attempting to teach vegetarianism to a pack of hungry wolves in front of a big bloody steak. The human nature is known as being dual and the part that is emphasized the most by education and daily conditionings gives us the further behaviour. Thus constantly emphasizing on the animal, instinctual nature, creating more fear than love in people’s life is gradually leading them to manifest their animalistic nature rather than their human one. This is the reason why despite the rules and endless previous disastrous experiences, human society is still generating wars and fights with every occasion possible.

Article 2.

Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.”

When an individual sees him/herself as being addicted to some other individuals, to some situations of life or to some objects, how can we talk about the freedom of that person?

These liberties and rights can be stated clearly in the law but they can be taken away by deleting them from the mind of people, manoeuvring their desires and fears. The entire scientific establishment nowadays agrees that we are the ones responsible for putting the limits of our own existence, or at least that the limits of our existence are set by us. This is why it is possible to create a law that will protect some people from discrimination and at the same time to convince those people to discriminate themselves. The modern form of slavery is not physical but economical, political and media slavery. There are not so many forms of physical slavery left, based on owning the physical body of another person but there are new forms of owning people’s desires, people’s fears, people’s hopes or beliefs. One can own someone’s public image, someone’s resources for basic existence and therefore practically exert the same form of slavery as that of the middle ages, just in an area that is a new domain of existence, where the rules have not yet been established since there is not so much awareness in this area yet.

As long as we are not protecting people from this self-limitation we are still only talking formalities with respect to human rights. The new forms of slavery find people unprepared and the only way to make them prepared is to educate people so that they cannot be dependent on anyone from outside, not be addicted to certain exterior aspects, and not easily fall into all kinds of blinding temptations. In this respect we can say generally that spiritual training and education can truly prepare people for this realization, all the other aspects of life influence little (if at all) the situation created by people’s own self-induced limitations.

“Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.”

Article 3.

“Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.”

The first comment here refers to the right to life of any person. This right to life is more than the physical life. In many spiritual traditions it is said that a life that is does not aim towards spiritual awakening is not a life at all. For this reason the transformation that is given by education in a spiritual way combined with the practical results of a spiritual practice will ensure the right to life of that person. It is not enough to have life in the physical body and more and more people acknowledge this truth nowadays. There are more levels of awareness regarding the term “alive” that are coming up today and we have to consider these new horizons as well when we talk about the “right to life” otherwise we risk talking about something that is already history.

The second comment here refers to “liberty and security”. As we recently saw (and in the last century also repeatedly) the notion of liberty often opposes the notion of security when it is about the person or the society. Some naïve dreamers have said that the liberty and security of the individual are not conflicting notions but only the individual liberty sometimes conflicts with the security of society. In reality the security of society is motivated by the individual security and therefore is should serve it! Recent events have shown that the more we emphasize on social security, the less liberty we have at the individual level, the more individual liberty we have at the individual level the more we tend to have social insecurity. This situation will always be in conflict as long as liberty and security are two notions that are fundamentally in conflict at the individual level. The talk about social security is meaningless before solving this initial root conflict at the level of the individual.

What is this conflict about? From the point of view of the spiritual systems, security and safety is what drives the ego, it is the expression of the preservation instinct in its most abstract form. The ego represents the “summum bonum” of all the false beliefs and reactions that a human being has about him/herself and the environment. The spiritual transformation consists (among other things) of the gradual dissolution and transcendence of the existence dominated by the ego. But at this level few understand that what is obtained by this process of deep spiritual transformation is a state of freedom. Thus liberty is obtained when the ego and the forces that drive it – including security or safety – vanish. For the one who is learning and developing, the need for individual security is replaced with knowledge and awareness. On the other hand, we can clearly see that all that we are assuming in the name of security is later limiting our individual freedom. For example, sometimes people are afraid to lose their lover and in order to secure their relationship they decide to have a baby, or they take a trip around the world, or they buy a house together. These things are not bad, but when they are done with the hidden meaning to secure the relationship and to make sure that it will continue then over time they will destroy the very root of the relationship. The two lovers have just a false impression that their relationship will be safe, but these actions are destroying the individual liberty in that relationship and the later consequences are the destruction of the relationship itself. For the sake of security, so that the status quo in their life is preserved, people give away their liberties and in order to gain liberty, people have to take the risk of evolution and transformation, risking that what existed before will not be the same after the transformation has taken place. In absence of individual transformation, individual liberty will sometimes threaten the other individuals, therefore we either give away some of the liberty and we get security (see the Patriot Act) or we take the individual transformation and then our liberty will be safe for the others.

As long as we live life at the instinctual level, dominated by strong desires and instincts, we will always choose security against liberty and there will be someone to benefit from this choice. Eliminating the root of the problem here will be spiritual evolution and the deep understanding of this fundamental contradiction between the two values. Liberty and security are able to coexist in the case of a person who is walking the spiritual path and is able to consciously work for the conciliation between the two tendencies.

Article 4.

“No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.”

As we have shown above, the modern form of slavery is not a direct one but an indirect one – mental slavery – and it includes all kinds of methods that are not counted nowadays as slavery, but they imply the same impact as the old fashioned version. Sometimes the modern mental slavery is even worse since it forces people to accept voluntarily what the old fashioned slavery cannot do. An example here is the communism of North Korea, in which the ideal society replaced the role of the family and family education was taken care of by the society. We have considered this to be an outrageous interference of the state in the individual’s life and freedom. Yet if we look objectively at the modern western society, we cannot ignore the fact that the child – parent connection is disappearing and the children are raised by the society, family ties becoming in most cases only formalities that tend to disappear. This is a result of an apparently free choice but one cannot ignore the striking similarities between the two situations that underline the new form of slavery which is leading to the same results. Materialism and mental slavery are leading to the personal choice of slavery.

Since the text states that slavery and servitude should be prohibited in all their forms, what did we do to prohibit the servitude that big corporations are creating through the mental conditioning of most of their employees? There were some cases of employees who died from overworking, yet no one was responsible for that since those persons have the “freedom” to go home and rest. At the same line we have the slavery created by the financial system that lives from stimulating in people the desire to have what they cannot afford and in this way to enslave them to their own desires and through this to enslave them to the corporatist interest. Ignoring these aspects just because it is too complicated to talk about them is not a wise solution, especially today.

It is time to re-evaluate the very definition of slavery, and in order to bring forth all its forms we have to include all the forms of slavery that are born from ignorance and lack of understanding of the mechanisms of life, slavery that is the root of all slavery and which always gives room for abuses, regardless of how many laws we put forth in the society. Ignorance cannot be defeated with a law.

Article 5.

“No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”

Today’s understanding of torture is outdated. It has been proven that nowadays one can die from stress, a fact that was discovered in the beginning of the 20th century. Remote torture through media is a widespread practice today and it is a tool used for punishing political opponents, to control the others’ reactions and even to eliminate a group that does not fit with the general trend in society. A degrading treatment is not only to torture the physical body of a person, it is also to shade strange public attention on that person, or to create a false accusation and continue with a trial for several years without any proof and in the end to drop charges as if it was a mistake, and so on…

Some of the forms of torture that are used these days do not imply physical contact between the executioner and the victim. There are people losing all their dignity running cases in courts against the state and when they have a chance to prove their point, nobody will mention that in the same media where their public image was tarnished. Their self-confidence is ruined which has almost the same impact as some physically degrading treatment. Furthermore, when the physically degrading treatment ends, the victim has a chance to recover, but in the case of moral or mental abuse the victim’s life is completely changed. The very notion of torture and inhuman or degrading treatment has to be redefined taking into consideration these new dimensions of awareness that we have today.

Article 6.

“Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law.

This is a trick that proves to create a lot of trouble by the development of the “incorporated” business. As long as a person is responsible in front of the law but the big companies are persons in front of the law only sometimes, there is a huge gap in the legislation that allows many abuses against human beings and violations of human rights.

Another aspect that has to be mentioned here is the correlation between the laws that are made by humans and the Universal Laws that run the whole manifestation. These laws include the laws of nature and are far more complex than the laws of the physical world. A correlation between the laws of human society and these universal laws must exist otherwise there will be a permanent source of violation of the fundamental human rights. One cannot imagine that the Universe who created us (in one way or another, by random mutations or by intelligent design) will not create us in an intrinsic human rights system. Therefore the law system of the human society has to be in line with the laws of the universe if we want to be sure not to violate the fundamental and universal human rights by ignorance. The fact that we are moving further away from the universal laws is already visible in different areas of our life today, and as a result of this we are unconsciously creating new violations of the rights of the human beings as members of the Universe.

Article 7.

“All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination.”

The whole discussion about equality is moving nowadays into the realm of spiritual dimensions. There is no chance that we will solve this problem of equality before the law until we find the real grounds of our equality, which is the spirit. One can easily note that before the universal laws we are all equal and this is a fact that cannot be denied by anyone on this planet. If before the human laws some are not equal with the others, before the laws of nature we are all equal WITHOUT ANY EXCEPTION. Everyone is dying in the same manner and no rich, powerful or intelligent person was able to defeat this except on spiritual grounds. For example, before the law of time all are equal. Before the laws of our inner nature we are all the same. Once again we find here the need to develop the correlation between the law system of the human society and the universal laws of nature, which in this context we can call the Divine Laws. A tyrant can abuse the laws of the society but he will never abuse the laws of the universe. It is obvious that to continue making the laws of society different from the inviolable laws of the universe will continue to give opportunities for abuses to appear. Making the laws of society identical to the universal laws will make the first ones as inviolable as the last ones. Carrying out this task is a great work that has to imply all the levels of society, including the spiritual seekers who make an immense contribution in this direction.

Article 8.

“Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights granted him by the constitution or by law.”

These days the national authorities tend to become obsolete since we are dealing now with supranational states and corporations, often imposed through manipulation by small groups of interest of the vast majority. “Tyrants” are now heading towards a world dimension so it is there that our attention should be focused. The national remedy can be easily overridden by the international tribunal and this is an increasingly big problem.

Another comment on this article is about granting. Since the laws are constantly violated and the humans are falling victim to these violations, who can still grant these rights? The problem with granting the rights is in fact more about finding the source of the rights, of those liberties that no one is violating, and staying within that frame. In this way what was granted AND WAS ALWAYS PROVEN to work will apply for us too.

Article 9.

“No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile.”

Talking about arbitrary arrest must be made in the context of the laws of nature, otherwise all the arrests and detentions have a certain degree of arbitrariness.

There is also the mental arrest that is nowadays practiced to a large extent and this should also be included in our debates since it is part of modern society and there are millions of people in mental prisons across the world. The same applies to exile since there are many who are forced into this and although this force is not physical it has the same impact. Again we can solve this problem by quitting the materialistic view that treats everything that cannot be perceived with the five senses as if it does not exist. The mental prison cannot be seen, but it exists and has practically the same effects on humans as the physical prison does. Scientific studies proved that if a person imagines eating a cake, his brain will have the same reaction as if he really eats the cake! And when the brain reacts, the whole body is affected. Thus we have today’s scientific background to prove that “mental prisons” affect people in the same way as physical prisons and sometimes these effects are deeper and longer lasting. All we have to do now is to install another paradigm for judging these facts and to act accordingly, maybe changing some of the ground laws that will no longer fit with the new vision.

Article 10.

“Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him.”

It is indeed an important aspect that has to be emphasized in order to have human rights respected in society. Upon closer inspection we can see that the notions of independency and impartiality in a world that is dominated by the power of the mass media are no longer valid. If there are some people living outside of society (such as secluded monks in a monastery), maybe they can form such an impartial tribunal. But even in such a case, there is a powerful influence that our minds together create upon each other especially when acting in unison, animated by the same beliefs. If in a certain case the judgment was already made by the public opinion manipulated by the media, the power of those millions of minds in Unison will tend to influence directly (without the physical interaction) the minds of the “impartial” judges. This influence was proved scientifically and it is also proving its power these days in various situations. The solution for this problem is to be found only in correlation with the level of spiritual education. It is known that the more evolved a person is from a spiritual point of view, the less influenced that person is by common beliefs. The independency of this “impartial” tribunal is therefore related to the level of consciousness of the judges and not to their level of professionalism or their academic education. This is also the reason why in old societies judgment was left to the wise men, not because they know the laws better (they are not necessarily more familiar with the worldly matters since they have spent most of their lives with their attention oriented in a different direction from the ordinary people in society and consequently they have lived outside of the social environment), but they have the real power of impartiality. Therefore, we again need to consider spiritual evolution as a part of our social structure, ensuring a reference point that we need so much now. The common set of beliefs and preconceived ideas can affect so dramatically the perception upon reality that the notion of objectivity is almost meaningless. Moreover, even in science, quantum mechanics already crushed the domination of “objectivity”, an objective measurement or value scale only exists for itself, the moment we use it for something it will affect it already and thus change it. Therefore, independency is just a notion that we cannot find in a holographic universe where every part is connected with all the other parts and thus they affect each other. The only “objective” aspect of the Universe is the Consciousness that is witnessing all that exists and contains everything within, but cannot be witnessed.

Article 11.

“(1) Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trial at which he has had all the guarantees necessary for his defence.”

This right has to be transferred to the media as well. It is a matter of paramount importance which has to be carefully considered if we are to aim for real justice. The media can already make the judgments and the court is only following the public opinion in that case. There are numerous cases worldwide where the court case is following the mass media case without any objectivity. Some of the previous considerations are valid here also.

“(2) No one shall be held guilty of any penal offence on account of any act or omission which did not constitute a penal offence, under national or international law, at the time when it was committed. Nor shall a heavier penalty be imposed than the one that was applicable at the time the penal offence was committed.”

Article 12.

“No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.”

The protection of journalists these days is the main preoccupation of human rights activists, maybe because it is more convenient. In reality, the journalist should be protected as a citizen and not have any special protection since the civil rights should be enough to cover all the human beings irrespective of their profession. However, at the same time the protection of the individual should cover also the protection against the journalists and the mass media. This protection has to be created in the spirit of education of the people who are sometimes exaggeratedly attached to their image and their exterior appearance rather than life itself. This protection against the activity of the journalist can be done not by increasing the laws against the media, but by imposing the education of the journalists. It is strange to see that if a person wants to teach at a university they needs a lot of preparation and certain degrees, and that person will address hundreds of students, while to address sometimes hundreds of thousands and even millions of people, not much education is required, and in most of the cases the rules in the media are very formal. The low level of education makes the journalist an easy victim of manipulation and political pressure, pressure that it is not made physically, but usually mentally. The notion of “self-censoring” has often appeared in different debates and it is a reality that goes together with all the other aspects that we mention here.

Article 13.

“(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state.
(2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.”

Article 14.

“(1) Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.
(2) This right may not be invoked in the case of prosecutions genuinely arising from non-political crimes or from acts contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.”

This limitation is automatically raising politics to the heights of being one of the protected human rights. The definition of what can be political and what is not political is making room for political abuses and misinterpretations of all kinds. Every system defines the political in such a way as to let out the opponents and thus to cancel their protection. This practice was demonstrated in all the regimes in the last centuries and will continue as long as such a relative and discriminative approach on this subject exists. The opponents of the system will never be accused of political crimes, but they will be convicted for “non-political” crimes, which are never protected by human rights. In order to stop this practice (a practice that was often ignored by the debates about human rights, again because it is difficult to define the separation line) we have to reconsider the way we integrate the law in the society and where the protection is placed.

Article 15.

“(1) Everyone has the right to a nationality.”

The advantages of belonging to a nationality are complex and belong to the human structure.

Globalization is making the national identity almost disappear and then nationality will become an obsolete notion. Various studies related to the specific of nations have shown the existence of a “national soul” and the denial of such notions just for the reason that they are not objectively proven is an attitude that doesn’t fit the modern world. The importance of the national souls upon the individuals that are forming a nation are so complex that it is worth being considered with respect to human rights and the human environment. There are theories (with solid scientific argumentation) which consider Earth as a living system that is self-regulating its own living and the living creatures are part of it. In this context, the nations will somehow play the role of living tissues of this living planet. The dissolution of the tissues in an organism is not always a progress, in most situations we call it cancer and it represents a mortal disease. Cancelling the national identities and the national specificities might not have the same beneficial effects as the apparent economical ones.

In this context the complex consequences of globalization are worth studying more carefully instead of generating such a complex situation and judging its effects afterwards.

“(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.”

The same rule has to be considered regarding the national identities in the view of the aggressive globalism that is emerging nowadays. Along the same lines, the formation of the continental unions (a trend that became clear these days) should not force nations to give up their identity and this process should be carefully done, otherwise this right of human beings will be indirectly cancelled: no one will be arbitrarily deprived of their nationality, but their nation will arbitrarily disappear!

Article 16.

“(1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.”

Talking about forming a family we have to talk first about being aware of what a family is. Moreover, the couple relationship is almost a taboo subject in modern society, if we are to judge from the number of hours of couple relationship education that are taught in western schools. Even when there is a little education it is most often purely instinctual and insufficient, not doing justice to this vast subject that contains within it one of the most important human qualities – the reproduction and perpetuation of the species.

Education in this aspect is usually given by “underground” sources, having as a consequence the extreme unreliability of the modern family and the use of sexuality at a very low and instinctive level.

“(2) Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses.”

Driven by instincts that are sometimes mistaken for pure love, in absence of an education that would include LOVE as one of the main issues, the ones forming a family enter into it freely from a juridical view point, but completely unprepared and without freedom due to their ignorance. This results in the fact that divorce is at an all-time high, and familial happiness has become hard to find in a world almost obsessed with the search for happiness.

Freedom in absence of awareness and knowledge is nonsense. Therefore, the freedom to have a relationship and marriage is given by the deep understanding and experience that comes with the proper education regarding this subject.

“(3) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.”

The family as a unit tends to limit the choices of the individual without giving the understanding about the fundamental rules that are driving this important chapter of human life: the couple relationship. Before making this choice, the individual has to be given the options and then the freedom to choose, otherwise the family tends to become an instrument of social manipulation and will lead to all the strange situations we have these days in society (specifically in the west and in the east). On the other hand, family is defined and studied from a spiritual perspective as one of the subjects that are part of our life and our evolution. In absence of this integrating view, considering the protection for family will become another possible abuse and means of limitation when in the wrong hands. More important than this protection of the family will be the education of the youngsters about family – what it means, how to form a family and most importantly, WHY? Without the proper education, just protecting the family becomes an electoral advantage in times of social difficulties.

Article 17.

“(1) Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.”

This right has become a nightmare in the modern world that is not ready to own almost anything since the individual doesn’t own itself. In the modern day we have cases like MONSANTO in which a group of personal interests are playing with the laws of nature to create monster genes for profit and ownership reasons.

The spirit of ownership is not far from slavery since all is related with all in this “holographic” universe. If one has the right to own something and all is interconnected, sooner or later that person will own other persons and that is slavery!!! As absurd as it might look when put it in this way, the situation is like this in the modern world and no matter how much we will try to hide from it, the reality is showing evidence all over. The modern human being is in most situations not ready to own something since he/she will become addicted to these properties and will aim for more until ownership becomes slavery. This process is already proven by many generations on this planet and even in the civilized world we can see the same pattern today.

The feeling of property is one of the links that ties together the illusion of the ego and makes the person confused regarding his/her own Divine Identity. This makes people believe that they are what they own and this is the root of the self-supported materialism. This feeling was proven by all the spiritual systems as being at the root of ignorance of the human beings, the proof for that is the low level of consciousness that characterizes many people that own a lot of properties. If owning will raise the level of consciousness then the richest will always be the wisest and then they will never need PR and public image counselling to repair their stupid mistakes. The reality proves that one is ready for ownership after developing the set of moral qualities that will keep him/her away from the temptation to identify with the property. In absence of this moral scale, ownership is the root of greed, fear of loss, violence and all the associated bad behaviour that humans prove to be capable of when they have an acute sense of property. The subject is delicate and must be addressed with much care since the collective property also was leading to some anomalies in absence of a spiritual system (we refer here to Communism)

“(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.”

Article 18.

“Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.”

This right can be violated in so many ways these days, without any visible trace of the violation. The mass media manipulation can prevent people from embracing a wonderful idea or they can be persuaded to follow a strange and even harmful direction or current of opinion.

The rights to freedom have to come with the means of this freedom. If a scientist wants to study the effects of mobile phone radiation upon the human life, he will not get any funding for the study and even though he has the freedom to study he will not be given the chance.

There are ideas and systems that cannot be understood in the established paradigm. This is the essence of transformation, it starts with ideas that are outside of the reach of normal mentality and after a while these ideas are integrated into our life with the effect of transforming the whole system. The more we oppress and control the new ideas, the more we stop the development and transformation. This can be seen in the individual life, but it also happens in society. There are some aspects of spirituality that cannot be understood from the outside and it is enough to express an opinion in the mainstream media (an opinion that in fact will express our limitations in that domain) and this opinion will violate the rights to freedom of thought for millions. The only solution to this is again the proper education of people for it is the only way one can follow the system by trying it and also that we will not speak before we know something from experience as we might be wrong! This is a normal rule in a spiritual system.

Article 19.

“Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.”

In absence of proper education of the entire population, there will always be means to attack and harm people with opinions and expression. The journalists and any other persons who are forming the public opinion carry a responsibility that is often too big for that person. They are most of the time unaware of the damage they can create by forming the opinions and thus limiting the freedom of opinion and expression. Of course here the fans of power will say that the leaders also have the same rights to express their opinion, but again we go back to the model from the distant past where the ones who had the right to talk – the right that was not given by anybody but came from the fact THAT THEY WERE ASKED THEIR OPINION – were the Wise men. Today we see people who are public figures giving their opinion about virtually anything, irrespective of their experience in life. Thus, a senator who has a miserable marriage and creates only the impression of a being in a happy couple for the sake of the public, gives advice to the young generations about what to do with their life, and even votes for laws regarding what kind of education will follow that generation.

The situation is leading us today to an almost generalized “dictatorship” of mediocrity and materialism.

Article 20.

“(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association.
(2) No one may be compelled to belong to an association.”

Once again the same problem appears here as in many other places on this Declaration, the methods to compel someone to belong to an association nowadays are no longer visible and clearly traceable in the materialistic frame that is enforced upon us today.

Article 21.

“(1) Everyone has the right to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives.”

To guarantee this right that is fundamental the educational system has to profoundly transform. There is no chance to avoid electoral fraud in a world that judges people more because of their wealth than because of their spiritual level of consciousness. To freely choose means that one has the possibility to know and for that people depend on the information channels that are owned by the ones that are elected! Can a free choice result from this?

Human beings are naturally endowed with capacities that are far beyond the ones we use these days. To take only one of them: we can intuitively perceive when someone is lying to us and from the perspective of free choice in electing the governmental representatives we can indeed choose freely if we can tell when a candidate is honest and when he is lying. Cultivating these aspects in the large mass of people will thus bring the real freedom of choosing the elections, but this will often be against the interest of the established power or almost the whole political class. It is therefore not a coincidence that these abilities were not encouraged and developed in society until now, even if such an article of law as the present one which talks about a freedom that cannot be really manifested has been created.

“(2) Everyone has the right of equal access to public service in his country.”

As long as the culture and the society is almost exclusively based on wealth and materialistic values, there will always be differences in access to the public services, the one that has wealth will feel cheated if accessing the same service as the poor one since the wealthy one has given to the public sector much more than the poor one in the form of taxes. In order to have social justice one has to integrate many more values in the social awareness and then these values will naturally decide the access to the public service. This awareness upon other values will be raised by a proper educational system.

“(3) The will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret vote or by equivalent free voting procedures.”

It is a well-known fact that the will of a person is just a sum of all the exterior influences that are compiled by the individual ego, as long as that person has not realized the truth within, the Supreme True Identity that is our inner reality, the witness of the whole existence. This ultimate identity of the human being is not identical with the body nor with the other energetic structures; it is invariant to the passing of time. The same “I” we experienced when we were little, we experience when we are grown-ups. The body meanwhile suffered dramatic transformations, but there is something in us that was always the same.

This “zero level” of our personality (as it was called in transpersonal psychology) or the Supreme Self (as it is called in spirituality) is the foundation of our free will. When we forget who we are in reality we start to rely on the exterior world and we try to find out who we are there, defining ourselves with the possessions we have, the actions we do, the titles we achieve and so on. To have a free will one has to realize at least partially this inner reality, the true “I”. In absence of that we are always subjected to another manipulation that we will consider as our own choice. This achievement implies spiritual training and generally represents spiritual evolution.

Article 22.

“Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security and is entitled to realization, through national effort and international co-operation and in accordance with the organization and resources of each State, of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality.”

Social security when blindly applied is works against the free development of the personality of the individual.

It is known that if we leave the children to eat whatever they like they might hurt themselves, therefore we have to teach them. In absence of an education that aims for the development of the personality of the individual, how can only social security ensure that? It is not only that social security cannot create the development of personality, but in absence of proper education social security creates lazy, irresponsible and troubled people. It is a common fact (ignored by the respective governments) that the suicidal rate is the biggest in some of the countries that have the best social security system. This fact suggests that social security does not make people happier or better prepare them for life, in some situations it even makes things worse.

When the “iron curtain” was falling it was noticed that eastern European workers were more reliable and were easily taking the jobs from many western workers. Trained in difficult conditions of existence, these workers were better from certain points of view. This is the reason why, when talking about developing the personality, we are not referring only to the comfort of life and the protection of the rights of the physical existence.

The educational system has to contain the necessary training of the personality and not only to provide the information. In the past the daily difficulties were part of the personal training and thus the school held a smaller role. Now, if we hold social security in such high esteem we have to give the schools a bigger role to provide the training of the personality of students so that they are really develop and are ready for life.

Article 23.

“(1) Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment.
(2) Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work.
(3) Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration ensuring for himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection.
(4) Everyone has the right to form and to join trade unions for the protection of his interests.”

Article 24.

“Everyone has the right to rest and leisure, including reasonable limitation of working hours and periodic holidays with pay.”

Article 25.

“(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.”

This security in general is a complete eradication of the concept of “intelligent design of the universe”. If nothing is a coincidence in the universe and everything seem to have a purpose, then the notion itself about security and social security changes completely the perspective and has to be reconsidered. Can we determine with precise methods the future development of events? And if not, then how can we guarantee the right for a certain standard of life and security since life itself is the result of an intelligent design and fits each of us as it is?

“(2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.”

Article 26.

“(1) Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.”

In elementary education there shall exist a spiritual part that will prepare the person for life in the above mentioned conditions. In absence of this system, the individual reaches to maturity without having the mature qualities. An example of this is the “emotional retardation” of many people these days due to the lack of training in this field when they were young.

“(2) Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.

(3) Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.”

This was always a source of abuses and no system was able to stop it since it means interference in the intimate sphere of the family. The fact that education is compulsory is enough to make the problem disappear if in the schools the education will be given as a general and personal development oriented education. In this way the teenager that is ready to freely choose will be able to choose from his/her own heart and the interference and eventual abuses from the parents will not be possible.

This measure is justified by the fact that in many families the responsibilities of being a parent and educating is extremely low and therefore deciding the fate of the child is not moral.

Article 27.

“(1) Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.
(2) Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.”

Again the same view that we are the only authors of the creation we make, in the conditions that we are not even clear we arrived here on Earth. The ownership over the rights to authorship also creates the confusion regarding the work we are doing with severe consequences upon our life. When we are the authors of the actions, we get attached to them, to their results. This is the beginning of a long chain of limitations that we gradually impose on ourselves without even knowing it. A proper spiritual education will protect people from this mistake and will make the authoring of an idea an issue of completely different significance.

The spiritual systems provide different ways to understand and harmoniously integrate the daily duties with the fact that we are not the authors of the actions but only the channels through which the Supreme Consciousness manifests. All the spiritual systems – in unison with modern studies on the psychology of work – agree that the one who considers himself the author of the action will be less efficient and more stressed in his work than the one who realizes this state of channelling of the universal intelligence from above that manifests in his actions.

Article 28.

“Everyone is entitled to a social and international order in which the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration can be fully realized.”

For this the proper setting has to be provided as it is meaningless to talk about this if there is no system that will also provide the means for the social order to appear naturally.

Article 29.

“(1) Everyone has duties to the community in which alone the free and full development of his personality is possible.
(2) In the exercise of his rights and freedoms, everyone shall be subject only to such limitations as are determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public order and the general welfare in a democratic society.”

Public order and general welfare are included in the spiritual and moral development of the individual, but when they are independent of that they can be tools for abusing the human beings and violating their human rights.

“(3) These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.”

This statement places the United Nations above God or the Supreme Universal Spirit that created us all. If we have some rights and freedoms, they cannot be more clear and broad than the ones Nature itself gave us, therefore this paragraph shows a deep ignorance of the authors who considered the United Nations as being entitled to decide which are the human rights and which are not the human rights! This will be normal if the human being was a creation of the United Nations, but since the United Nations is a gathering of human beings that were created by the power of Nature, the Supreme Spirit or GOD, it cannot overrule the human rights and decide upon them in any circumstance. Can it be that the United Nations will decide that some of the human rights (that the universe gave us) are no longer needed? Hopefully not! Therefore this paragraph is an unfortunate conclusion of this Declaration of Human Rights that proves to be out of date and in need of profound reconsideration.

Article 30.

“Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein.”

This observation in the end of the act proves the inefficiency of a system that lacks the spiritual perspective. The moment you set some rules in the relative domain of the society, those rules are already the subject of abuse and misuse. The laws of creation only have the power and the efficiency to perpetuate continuously as they are doing within the permanent act of creation. This “self-supported” law system is the model from which all the human laws should be copied, with the aim of attaining a state of balance and harmony that is similar to the natural one.

November 2008

References:
Soteria International’s synthesis of the 2016 Spiritual Human Rights Conference: http://www.soteriainternational.org/synthesis-of-the-2016-spiritual-human-rights-conference
UN Declaration of Human Rights: http://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/

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Advaita Stoian

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Comments (2)

  1. Josephine says:

    I think you touch on such an interesting aspect of this Declaration. It seems as though we take for granted the simplicity of these rights, when in fact, they are so complex & without the level of awareness you refer to, we cannot even grasp the scope of them & actually how to make sure that we don’t unknowingly abuse those of others and ourselves. Where do we start with this education?? Are there schools that are open to this or already teaching in this way?

  2. Lise says:

    Dear Advaita,
    I appreciate very much your work and your visions. It is a very good article, and indeed, the UN Declaration shall be studied in the school. Together with the common sense rules, this declaration can help us and our children to have a better understanding of our integration and rights in the society. Your comments, as presented in the article, are very correct and bring clarifications. Soteria International did a good work is raising the attention on this Declaration. How can we help more, as simple citizens? Which is our part of work to be done?
    Thank you, Lise

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