2008. szeptember 21., vasárnap

How a Constitution is living

A discourse held by G. Edward Griffin: An Idea Whose Time Has Come prompted me to write this essay.
I dedicate this to all defenders of the constitution, especially for members of Campaign for Liberty, for members of Freedom Force International and of course to Ron Paul and G. Edward Griffin.

G. Edward Griffin pertinently defines the essence of power.

We gain a good picture regarding how depraved the rulers of the European Christian world (kings, emperors, prelates and civil servants in high positions) became if we read Machiavelli. His Emperor no longer cared about the Will of God, and the primary goal of his reign was rather shameful, being none other than the retention and increase of his power.
Dante had already set forth in his Divine Comedy – in a very authentic and effective manner – what awaits the European Christian world.
Truly, Dante wisely predicted the Machiavellian Emperor of later ages. He scrambled:
„Protect yourself, Christian world, from the tyranny of the inept and undeserving rulers and politicians of the future!”
Self-respecting European nations tried to respond to Dante’s warning. This was the beginning of the long struggles to find a worthy constitution that was capable of holding the most dangerous absolutistic aspirations in check. To this great challenge, the Hungarian answer was the Doctrine of the Holy Crown. That is the Hungarian Constitution, a thousand years old constitution.

I don’t have to mention, in America “We The People” is the answer.
While G. Edward Griffin explains how the Constitution stands on eternal principles, makes a very important objection.

That objection suggests how a Constitution really works. From a different point of view I also would like to emphasize how a Constitution lives in the spirit of a people.

When I designed the logo for Ron Paul Revolution site, in the background I placed the picture of “We The People” near the picture of “Golden Bull of 1222” and the image of the Holy Crown. The Golden Bull it is the first document toward the constitutional development of Hungary created in 1222. But the roots of Hungarian constitution dates back in time when St Stephen I. during the coronation immediately offered the Holy Crown to Virgin Mary to seal a divine contract between her and the divine crown. Since that moment a king wasn’t a sovereign as in the rest of the European countries, instead the nation and the ruler are hierarchically below the crown. In this way the Holy Crown became symbol of the constitution too. Moreover, nobody wear the Holy Crown on his heads, always it was just a coronation crown.
As you may notice, the written document comes after. Until that the spirit of constitution was living in symbols and spirit of the population. Even if the Holy Crown is a very special, the Doctrine of the Holy Crown was the spirit of a network of knowledge.

From where do we know than the nature of that constitutional spirit? Let’s see an excerpt from St. Stephen’s admonitions to his son Imre:
My beloved son, delight of my heart, hope of your posterity, I pray, I command, that at every time and in everything, strengthened by your devotion to me, you may show favor not only to relations and kin, or to the most eminent, be they leaders or rich men or neighbors or fellow countrymen, but also to foreigners and to all who come to you. By fulfilling your duty in this way you will reach the highest state of happiness. Be merciful to all who are suffering violence, keeping always in your heart the example of the Lord who said, "I desire mercy and not sacrifice." Be patient with everyone, not only with the powerful, but also with the weak.
Finally be strong lest prosperity lifts you up too much or adversity cast you down. Be humble in this life, that God may raise you up in the next. Be truly moderate and do not punish or condemn anyone immoderately. Be gentle so that you may never oppose justice. Be honorable so that you may never voluntarily bring disgrace upon anyone. Be chaste so that you may avoid all the foulness of lust like the pangs of death.
All these virtues I have noted above make up the royal crown, and without them no one is fit to rule here on earth or attain to the heavenly kingdom.
The Doctrine of the Holy Crown has become the preserving force of the Hungarian Constitution and Hungarian statehood and it was a determining factor in the evolution of Hungarian constitutional law. However, its significance was not at its zenith when the Hungarian nation lived in prosperity and security, but when the country fell on hard times.

The citizens of the country of the Holy Crown watched vigilantly at every step, to see whether the Will of the Holy Crown was being followed or not. They were not to be fooled because the emergence of the Will of the Holy Crown was primarily guaranteed by the doctrine of constitutional law and by the laws that supported the arch of the Doctrine of the Holy Crown like pillars. They were reassured that the most important Will of the Holy Crown was that the legislative and the executive power should be clearly and verifiably divided between the King and the citizens of the country, and indeed, every time the King tried to aspire to absolute power, the worthy representatives of the people were not slow to inform the King that he had opposed the Will of the Holy Crown. This reminder usually resulted in proper resistance.

In the world of the Mystery, the Doctrine and the Concept of the Holy Crown, it was not by accident that the relevant laws were centuries old, and it was no accident that it was so difficult to modify and make amendments to these laws. Consequently, it is no surprise that even the intentions of rulers who were inclined to centralize power were often spectacularly shattered and successfully blocked by these laws.

The archaic civilization very often used symbols and legends to consolidate the binding between the knowledge of principles and the spirit of many generations. That’s happened with the principles of the constitution during the centuries.

Moving on to the more complicated aspects of the Mystery of the Holy Crown, let us first assume that the Holy Crown would not present a mystery if it were not actually sacred.
Why is the Holy Crown sacred? Because the Hungarian nation received the Holy Crown from God – with a specific message and for a specific reason. This message is connected to Truth – the Living Divine Truth, the invincible, the One, who is God’s self-preserving manifestation: the greatest Force that validates God’s plans, the most solid Power. It is in charge of both punishment and protection: it enforces truth and protects with love. (In Hungarian mythology and folktales, the Living Divine Truth is often depicted as a guardian spirit who influences the outcome of battles; in Hungarian literature it emerges as the God of the Magyars.) Since ancient times, Hungarians have had an awareness of their mission. They believed that their specific role was to be the worthy servants of the Living Divine Truth. Self-confident Hungarians of the Middle Ages expressed this in just a few words: an angel brought the Holy Crown.

Even if it looks like a dangerous influence of the religion over the constitution, the reality is that principles of freedom dominated the religion and not vice versa. Before the influence of the Roman Empire’s religious power, Hungarians had a proto-Christian tradition without centralized control. It’s not an exaggeration to say that the idea of constitution was living like a religion. Without that, the accessibility to the principles would be limited to intellectuals only.

A constitution always has to be defended, and if it is the case, has to be reestablished in the tradition that „infringement of law does not create new law”.

Thanks to the reestablishment of the continuity of law, fascism could not take hold in Hungary between the two World Wars, until the German occupation in 1944. It is no accident that John Flournoy Montgomery, the American Ambassador at the time, called Hungary an oasis in Hitler’s desert.
Up to March 1944, Hungary was the only European country east of the Pyrenees where the lives of Jews could be considered safe. Besides the Hungarian Jews, then numbering almost one million, sixty to seventy thousand Jewish refugees from foreign countries fled to Hungary and lived there in safety until Hungary had been largely provoked by the protection granted to Jews. - Montgomery, John Flournoy: Hungary, the Unwilling Sattelite. New York, 1947, p. 30; Budapest, 1933, p. 86.
During the WWII the Nazis suspended the Hungarian traditional constitution. After that comes Marxists Leninists who wrote a new collection of rules and installed as a new constitution. Similar attempt takes places in EU with the Treaty of Lisbon, but thanks to Irish people, the ratification process gets stuck on.

After the 1990, instead of reestablishing the continuation of the traditional constitution, the Court declared, without further reasoning:
[T]he Holy Crown as an object does not have a public-law function and the state as its owner can dispose over it. The Holy Crown is the property of the state; it is the property of the treasury and thus is regulated by Law 38/1992 on public finances. . . . The Constitutional Court points out that there is no obstacle to the state disposing of its property within the bounds of the law. There can be no constitutional objections to its entrusting any institution or body with the exercise of certain of its property rights.
In short, as far as the Constitutional Court was concerned, the crown was like any other object of state property and had no independent constitutional significance whatsoever. Just remember the evil declaration! - "The Constitution is just a piece of paper" - G.W. Bush – In the same way the symbol of the traditional constitution become a simple object, a property of the state’s treasury in our country!
But, since the spirit of the constitution lives in the heart of a nation, nobody can stop it definitively. Here in my country, more and more new voluntary initiatives arise. Right now in this autumn is starting a private university which clearly declares that no state funding is accepted.

At the end of my essay, let say some of the weakness of our constitutional development. At least myself I consider that a weakness. The knowledge about the monetary system of a free society is almost completely missing from our nation’s consciousness. For a lot of people in our country this problem is seen as a just technical problem which is deductible from the constitution. I don’t think so.

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