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Universal Declaration of Human Responsibilities.

A proposed addendum to the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

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Introduction


     To recognize that there is extensive human conflict, misery, and suffering everywhere in the world
        is uncontroversial. Humanity has a several-thousand year intellectual tradition out of which much
        discourse, written history, and technical advances have emerged. Yet despite thousands of
        years to have had the benefit of to learn in, the one thing we seem incapable of  learning is to
        co-exist in ways that support and affirm life - in a  state of Peace.

        On Dec 10, 1948 - three years after the end of World War II,  the recently formed United Nations
        (formerly the League of Nations) adopted 
the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as an integral
        element of the
  International Bill of Rights 
instruments of the  Charter of the United Nations.
                          

        While it is good to proclaim the dignity, worth, and rights of, and on behalf of individuals, we might
        observe in the
ensuing years since the adoption of the  Universal Declaration of Human Rights that
        while there is a more humane consciousness in the world, that there is equally enough conflict and
        human misery currently to suggest that the notion of proclaiming rights requires further insight,
        support, and understanding to augment a human and humane
consciousness through the aware-
        ness of individual, and by extension, universal responsibility for thought and action.
 

        It seems that it is both useful and timely to inform humanity that all people have a responsibility to
        all humanity - in conjunction with their human rights.
Hence this, a proposed addendum to the
        Universal Declaration of Human Rights entitled the
Universal Declaration of Human Responsibilities,
        and the hope we can begin building a bridge for Peace in the only place it can ever be: The human
        mind.

           The only way to achieve Peace is to learn what the nature of being fully human and humane is - and
         this suggests what is both a right and a responsibility for all humanity.




Rationale


    If we examine the plethora of discourses produced by humanity, we find that throughout history there is
    a tendency to condemn behaviours and actions which harm humanity.

    If it were not for these discourses (laws,  morals, ethics, treaties, human rights etc.) we might presume
    that the propensity for violence by people against people is a usual, and in that sense a normal and                     acceptable part of human existence.

    But our discourses do inform us that there is a healthier and more life supporting conception of humanity
    and human relations to respect and adhere to – by the simple fact of their existence at all.







Universal Declaration of

Human Responsibilities

 A proposed addendum to:

The Universal Declaration

 of Human Rights
 

United Nations

  The International Bill
   of Human Rights

  10 December, 1948







UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF
HUMAN RESPONSIBILITIES

1999



 Preamble


Whereas all members of the human family are to be accorded equal and inalienable human rights as set forth under the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, so will every member of the human family ascribe to the fundamental Human Responsibilities necessary to ensuring those inalienable human rights - in order to participate successfully in the human social contract in a manner that affirms life,


Whereas every declaration or code of human rights requires that all people understand and observe those rights to accord and affirm them, people must comprehend the fundamental responsibility essential to social contracts wherein rights can be sustained apart from merely defending rights when that is necessary,


Whereas a comprehensive conception of human responsibilities must include and encompass every conceivable means to understand and  minimize human misery and suffering, human impact on other species, and human impact on  the earth environment as a necessary condition of survival for humanity and for all species,



Whereas the waste of conflicts, cruelties, ignorance of human rights, ignorance of the basic dignity and worth of the human species, and ignorance of a healthy respect for all life contributes greatly to the suffering and misery of the human condition;  humanity therefore has the responsibility to recognize and admit that such suffering and misery is wholly of its own making, and it is therefore solely humanities' own, and every individual’s responsibility to understand, correct, and ameliorate all humanly caused suffering,


Whereas in all cases the need for proposing life affirming human rights presupposes an ignorance on the part of those individuals who do not recognize the innate desire of others to survive and to thrive unmolested in life. Moreover, human rights exist chiefly in order to defend against the presumed ‘rights’ of people to inflict their will upon others, and thereby interfere in the existence of others, but where no real ‘right’ to interfere in the lives of others exists. However, a responsibility does exist to compel all people to question the basis of any presumed right to impose their will which interferes with or causes pain or suffering to the lives of other people,


Whereas any conception of human rights exists as evidence that humanity has need of constructs, ideals, values, and an understanding of what will make humanity most enlightened; thus, a conception of human responsibilities may exist as a means to achieve the ends humanity craves,


Whereas the full accomplishment of all that humanity craves and aspires to, and has aspired to through the ages can only be realized in the spirit of people taking full responsibility for all things which are human, and with every person engaged in the active and conscious progression throughout their lives of seeking and striving for their greater humanity,


Now, Therefore, this UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RESPONSIBILITIES is to stand as a practical instrument of, and for the achievement of our greater humanity, which greater humanity can only come about by the responsible full examination of the range of human thought, motivations, acts, emotion, striving, and interactions,


Therefore, keeping this Universal Declaration of Human Responsibilities in conjunction with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and what taken together as a standard they state, imply, and intend will be the responsibility of all Nation States in the world, and of the community of humanity at large to counsel, encourage, and educate all people in their full individual  responsibility to seek their fullest and most fundamental humanity. Rights and responsibilities are invariably the most profound elements of freedom and Peace.

 


Article 1

          All human beings are born free and with full rights to life and all that is necessary to the maintenance
          of life, and will understand that  in sustaining their own  life will bear the responsibility of ensuring
          that
they understand that the same force compelling their own life is alive in every person also, and
          to
conduct themselves in respect of that knowledge, and in  recognition and respect of the life of
          every person.


Article 2

          All people bear the responsibility to actively seek to recognize the fundamental humanity of all
          people, in all places, and at all times. All people must  understand that  such active participation in
          the interest of humanity ensures their own place, safety, and trust in a social world. Trust, decency
          and the desire
for safety are rightly the generally universal human experience.

Article 3

          For all people in the world to exist in safety from other people requires that in all instances of conflict
          people are bound by the  responsibility to their own, and to every other person's right to life to
          engage, where possible, in the act of exploring alternative means to resolve the conflicts present,
          until such time as each conflict is prevented or resolved peacefully to the greatest
benefit and 
          satisfaction of all humanity.

Article 4

          All people are, and will be  responsible for the public trust insofar as that all people have the
          fundamental human right to exist unmolested, and to that end must exercise the most just solutions
          to
human conflict,  ignorance, or suffering whenever and wherever a solution is wanted or needed. It
          is
in this way that humanity will eventually come to learn that no person is above nor exempt from the
          responsibility for just action, and for the highest forms of justice to prevail in all life.

Article 5

          (1)  It is the responsibility of all people to provide or to seek as necessary guidance free of
          ambiguity, free of hypocrisy, and free of any self-serving bias which may harm humanity, or which
          under scrutiny can be shown to be false or negates life.

          (2)  It is therefore the responsibility of every individual to seek wise guidance, and to actively,
          honestly, and critically think through the implied consequences of the yield of any such guidance
          given or received in order to learn to judge for themselves, and thereby ensure a self-determined and
          autonomous knowledge of what constitutes wisdom and justice, and hence to discern what will or
          will not be to the benefit of all humanity. Therefore, it is a responsibility to think for oneself.

Article 6

          (1)  Wise guidance is desirable when the bias is serving one’s own healthy self-interest in belonging
          to our greater humanity. In this sense the self-interest is known
to be a healthy and positive self-
          interest wherein all humanity is the beneficiary and identical with
the interests of humanity at large.

          (2)  It is therefore the responsibility of all people to aspire and adhere to the authority of wisdom and
          all
autonomous and healthy understandings of things human, and to aver from accepting illegitimate
          authority where there can be negative consequences for humanity either individually or on the whole.

Article 7

          (1)  It is the responsibility of every person to support and observe just laws where just laws exist for
          the benefit of humanity, until such time as no laws are deemed necessary.

          (2)  It is the responsibility of every person to refuse and resist unjust laws as they can wherever
          unjust laws are
imposed upon humanity, to the fullest extent of their ability to do so.

Article 8

          Every person will, through the responsible striving to understand their own humanity, learn and
          exercise the higher thrusts of life: hope, compassion, charity, trust, kindness, and Peace in the
          humane and humanitarian tradition, and will henceforth strive to pass such understanding on
          to others.


Article 9

          Every person will strive to understand that in every case seeking the best for other members of the
          human species is ultimately in humane terms identical with seeking the best for oneself.

Article 10

          (1)  Every person will seek education, wherever possible, of a kind which develops their greatest
          human potentials, insofar as that such education will conform to its precept “to lead out.”

          (2)  An understanding of responsibility in regards to any education will require that all persons
          will
engage only in educational pursuits and practices which can clearly be shown to enhance life,
          healthy
emotional development, friendship, and good will to be directed to others. When all
          humanity is
engaged thus, conflict abates amongst individuals and across groups.

Article 11

          Every person will recognize that their own fundamental humanity, and by extension, that the fact of
          the essential fundamental humanity of all humanity, is of greater importance than any particular
          belief
or religion or doctrine. Moreover, by extension, people will understand that the process of
          creating
beliefs, religions, and doctrines is a process and function of humanity common to all
          humanity, and
that the individual beliefs do not admit nor allow any person to disregard the funda-
          mental humanity of
any person or group or persons.

Article 12

          Every person should carefully examine all communications, directives, and motivations to belief or
          to
action in order to ensure that all the intentions, actions, and outcomes of such compelling efforts
          will
serve the best interest of all humanity, in both the short term and the long term.

Article 13

          (1) Every person will engage in or support the responsible and scrupulous evaluation of all existing
          documents, constitutions, legislation, charters, and other forms of human discourse guiding or
          regulating human life and action, to ensure that such bodies of work ultimately serve the humane
          interests of all humanity equally and without discrimination.

          (2) All social constructs guiding or regulating human life and action will be continuously
          re-evaluated to ensure that the emerging broader global humanitarian social consciousness is
          reflected in those works. Inclusions which are outdated or are no longer useful or relevant in a
          contemporary context reflecting a developing humane consciousness will be removed through a
          due
and responsible process, in the interest of all humanity.

Article 14

          No person will deny their responsibility to discover, to experience, and to advance any or all of that
          which can be considered to properly be the responsibility of humanity to humanity. In that each
          person will strive to assure the best of humanity through responsible action and experience, they are
          participating in humanity realizing itself in the most enlightened sense.

Article 15

          Every person should independently exercise their own powers of critical judgment, just thought,
          conceptions of unassailable truths, and should ultimately come to their own understanding of how
          best to understand the concept of responsibility itself in the social context,

Article 16

          Every person, if having found any of the foregoing to be sound,  practical, and life supporting, will
          therefore have recognized their own fundamental humanity in some measure, and in that sense will
          then  recognize that they properly belong to the greater human family.

Article 17

          Every person is bound by individual responsibility to examine, analyze, and assess all the principles
          and premises contained in this statement of The Universal Declaration of Human Responsibilities to
          critically test the value for their selves, and for all humanity.

Article 18

          Every person, if having found the foregoing Universal Declaration of  Human Responsibilities to
          have
passed the rigours  prescribed within it, must on their own responsibility consider, augment,
          elucidate,
and contribute any of their expanded conceptions and understandings to others, to the
          benefit of
all humanity,  for the love of humanity, and for life itself.

*




Post Script


          It is an unassailable truth that all humanity is fundamentally the same. 

          Skin colour, languages, beliefs, nationalities, and so on – these are secondary measures of our
          humanity.

          Our primary measure is that we are all of the same species: we all have skin, experience emotion,
          we all possess the capacity
for language, for beliefs of any kind, and we share in common our
          craving for life.

          We do not merely believe, then, but rather we know  that all humanity is the same in a fundamental
          sense.

          And so, we must stand and speak for all humanity in the most humane and humanitarian sense. 
          To
think otherwise is only to display poor habits of thought, and to go against life itself.
         
          Consider that if
in any case one argues against the humanity of another person, they are
          automatically arguing against
their own self and life, since their humanity is identical to that
          of all other peoples.

          To argue against any of humanity and by extension oneself constitutes both a theoretical and
          practical impossibility: it
is to eclipse one’s  self.

          Conversely, if in every instance people argue for humanity, they automatically argue for themselves 
          since they are that humanity, and they are therefore in unity with themselves.

          When both sides of the argument are understood, the conflict or argumentation conflates, and
          simply
disappears leaving no argument at all - only our humanity, and true Peace.

        Perhaps in this deeper knowledge of our shared fundamental humanity lies the hope of
        humanity to attain Peace.

 

*

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For more information please refer to Article 7 at the following URL:

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

 Thank you For Reading.