Universal Declaration on Buddhism as Cultural Heritage of Humanity

 

Universal Declaration on Buddhism as Cultural Heritage of Humanity

 

Preamble

The Presidency of the UNITED BUDDHIST NATIONS ORGANIZATION,

Considering the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Economic Social and Cultural Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the Convention on the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, the Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage, the UNESCO Recommendation on the Safeguarding of Traditional and Popular Culture, the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity, the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the European Convention for the Protection of Archaeological Heritage, the Europe Council Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society, and the Peruvian Declaration of Intangible Cultural Heritage Manifestations and the Work of great masters sages and creators as Cultural Heritage of the Nation and Declaration of Cultural Interest;

Ratifying the Universal Declaration of Spiritual Rights, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Universal Declaration on the Right to World Peace, the Universal Declaration on the Rights of Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communities, the Universal Declaration on the Rights of Non-Human Beings, the Universal Declaration on the Right to Inter-religious and Inter-Spiritual Harmony, the Universal Declaration on the Responsibility to Save the World, and the Declaration of Independence of the United Buddhist Nations Organization;

Bearing in mind that the Ladakh Buddhist Chant (recitation of sacred Buddhist texts in the trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir) in India has been inscribed by UNESCO in the list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity;

Watching that the Regong Arts (Tibetan Buddhist and ethnic Tu paintings) in China have been inscribed by UNESCO in the list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity;

Respecting that the Yeongsanjae ritual (recreation of the Lotus Sutra issued by Gautama Buddha in Vulture Peak) in Korea has been inscribed by UNESCO in the list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity;

Aware that the practice of Yoga in India has been inscribed by UNESCO in the list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity;

Appreciating that UNESCO has inscribed the following Buddhist cultural sites in the list of World Heritage: Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley (Afghanistan), Ruins of the Buddhist Vihara at Paharpur (Bangladesh), Mogao Caves (China), Mount Taishan (China), Historic Ensemble of the Potala Palace- Lhasa (China), Lushan National Park (China), Mount Emei Scenic Area, including Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area (China), Dazu Rock Carvings (China), Longmen Grottoes (China), Yungang Grottoes (China), Mount Wutai (China), Site of Xanadu (China), Historic Monuments and Sites in Kaesong (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea), Ajanta Caves (India), Buddhist Monuments at Sanchi (India), Mahabodhi Temple Complex at Bodh Gaya (India), Borobudur Temple Compounds (Indonesia), Buddhist Monuments in the Horyu-ji Area (Japan), Historic Monuments of Ancient Nara (Japan), Shrines and Temples of Nikko (Japan), Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range (Japan), Hiraizumi – Temples, Gardens and Archaeological Sites Representing the Buddhist Pure Land (Japan), Fujisan, sacred place and source of artistic inspiration (Japan), Town of Luang Prabang (Lao People’s Democratic Republic), Great Burkhan Khaldun Mountain and its surrounding sacred landscape (Mongolia), Pyu Ancient Cities (Myanmar), Kathmandu Valley (Nepal), Lumbini, the Birthplace of the Lord Buddha (Nepal), Buddhist Ruins of Takht-i-Bahi and Neighbouring City Remains at Sahr-i-Bahlol (Pakistan), Taxila (Pakistan), Haeinsa Temple Janggyeong Panjeon, the Depositories for the Tripitaka Koreana Woodblocks (Republic of Korea), Seokguram Grotto and Bulguksa Temple (Republic of Korea), Gyeongju Historic Areas (Republic of Korea), Namhansanseong (Republic of Korea), Baekje Historic Areas (Republic of Korea), Sacred City of Anuradhapura (Sri Lanka), Sacred City of Kandy (Sri Lanka), Golden Temple of Dambulla (Sri Lanka), Historic City of Ayutthaya (Thailand);

Being aware that the UNESCO Constitution is committed to assist the conservation, progress and dissemination of knowledge, having the duty to preserve and protect the universal cultural heritage of humankind;

Noting that the cultural heritage traditions of Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communities are threaten to be banalized, deteriorated or destroyed by contemporary societies obsessed with economic development and mass media;

Confirming that there is no contradiction between the respect for Buddhist Cultural Heritage and the teaching of the Buddhist doctrine of impermanence, since such doctrine is also part of the cultural heritage of humanity;

Declaring that the deterioration or destruction of the Buddhist Cultural Heritage constitutes a spiritual impoverishment of the heritage of all the peoples and nations worldwide;

Discovering that Buddhist Cultural Heritage has been destroyed many times in history, as happened in Afghanistan and the Maldives (XXI century), and that in the past this cultural destruction of thousands of temples was accompanied by multiple genocides and ethnic cleansings against the Buddhists Peoples, as happened in Bangladesh (XX century), Mongolia (XX century), Cambodia (XX century) and also in ancient India (XII century);

Denouncing that in China there have occurred several multiple cases of genocide and ethnic cleansing against the Buddhist Peoples to which it attempted to physically and culturally destroy, as occurred in Khotan (XI century), in the Dzungar People (XVIII century), in the Cultural Revolution (XX century) and in Tibet (XX and XXI centuries);

Showing that the protection of the Buddhist Cultural Heritage at international level is a task that States are carrying out partially and insufficiently;

Learning that the existing international conventions, treaties, declarations and resolutions have not yet declared Buddhism as World Cultural Heritage, which demonstrates the importance of the work of the UNITED BUDDHIST NATIONS ORGANIZATION for all Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communities of the world;

Affirming that Buddhism presents an extraordinary interest for the Salvation and Evolution of the world, demanding it be preserved as a world cultural heritage of the entire humanity, since its ethics and compassionate wisdom is the perennial spiritual nature of all human beings;

Urging the international community of States to participate in the protection of Buddhism as a Cultural Heritage of Humanity of exceptional universal value, having the duty to fulfill the individual and collective rights of the Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communities, especially by providing assistance in the face of the gravity of dangers threatening their welfare;

Believing that it is indispensable to adopt this Universal Declaration, which establishes that Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of humanity, in order to collectively protect this spiritual tradition;

Hoping that the international community will recognize that Buddhist Peoples possess both a material cultural heritage and an intangible cultural heritage that are in a profound interdependence;

Recognizing that globalization has brought political and economic advances although it has also created cultural and environmental dangers, such as the deterioration and destruction of tangible and intangible cultural heritage;

Supporting all organizations and individuals who are willing to work for safeguarding the cultural heritage of humankind;

Reaffirming that the Buddhist Peoples and Tribal Communities play a fundamental role in the creation, maintenance, safeguarding and renewal of the cultural heritage of humanity, by nourishing both material and immaterial cultural diversity;

Observing the transcendental task of the UNITED BUDDHIST NATIONS ORGANIZATION in elaborating international norms for the protection of Buddhist Cultural Heritage, even though such instruments are not legally binding for the States, since international agreements and resolutions need to be improved through an ethical and spiritual guidance;

Convinced of the mission of producing Awakening of consciousness throughout the international community on the need to help and protect the material and immaterial Cultural Heritage of Buddhism;

Recalling that the cases carried out by the International Buddhist Ethics Committee have the purpose of safeguarding the integrity of the intangible cultural heritage of Buddhism, in particular the ethical teachings of spiritual masters;

Recommending the invaluable work of the Maitriyana Buddhist University in disseminating Buddhism as a Cultural Heritage of the whole humanity, being a supreme teaching factor on interreligious dialogue, intercultural understanding and intercivilizatory mutual support;

Recalling the diversity of preserved spiritual traditions that Buddhism owns as a Cultural Heritage of humanity, nurturing the capacities and values of people, communities and nations;

Underlining that Buddhist Cultural Heritage contributes to world peace, social justice, democratic tolerance and environmental health;

Inviting the international community to incorporate Buddhism as a World Cultural Heritage which is a strategic element for the development of a planetary civilization that emphasizes in the eradication of war, poverty, ignorance and pollution;

Exhorting about the importance of Buddhist Cultural Heritage for the full compliance of human rights and fundamental freedoms;

Specifying that Buddhism as a Cultural Heritage of Humanity is fundamental for social cohesion, as well as for the equality between men and women;

Highlighting that Buddhism acquires diversity of cultural forms through the interaction and free circulation of ideas in space and time, which is evident in the originality of identities and in the plurality of cultural expressions of the Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communities;

Reiterating that freedom of thought, expression and action enables the flowering of Buddhist Cultural Heritage;

Encouraging the importance of Buddhism’s traditional knowledge as a source of material and immaterial cultural richness, especially the system of peak knowledge reached by spiritual masters and their millennial contribution to the development of a better world;

Calling for the adoption of measures to protect cultural expressions of Buddhist Peoples, especially spiritual traditions that may suffer the dangers of destruction, deterioration, contempt or plagiarism;

Admitting that the cultural expressions of spiritual traditions are an important factor that enables the Buddhist Peoples and humanity to evolve through values;

Ensuring that spiritual education plays a fundamental role in the protection and promotion of the cultural heritage of humankind;

Consolidating the vitality of the Cultural Heritage of spiritual communities and tribal peoples, which have the right to create, disseminate and protect their traditional cultural expressions;

Emphasizing the essential creative function of spiritual masters, who nurture, strengthen and develop cultural expressions tending to social progress;

Persuaded that the activities and services of Buddhism are a Cultural Heritage that renews the identity and the values of the people, so they should not be manipulated for commercial purposes;

Perceiving that globalization processes have developed technologies and media, although at the same time it has impoverished and manipulated spiritual traditions, allowing people outside a culture to profit from the values or knowledge of those traditions;

Noting that every individual has the right to participate in the cultural tradition of Buddhism, provided that he or she does not violate the integrity of the tradition or violates the rights of others who participate in said cultural heritage, especially the rights of the creators of such knowledge and practices;

Providing certainty that intercultural and interreligious dialogue is fundamental, so that every individual can be linked to any cultural tradition as long as he or she respects this heritage and does not copy it without authorization;

Observing compliance and protection of the intellectual property rights of spiritual communities that creatively contribute to the Cultural Heritage of Humanity;

Being aware that UNESCO has a duty to respect all cultures, so that it should facilitate the free circulation of the ideas of Buddhism as a Cultural Heritage of Humanity;

Bearing in mind that one of the objectives of the United Buddhist Nations Organization is to achieve unity between all Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communities in order to safeguard every ideal and principle of Buddhism, respecting their common Cultural Heritage based on the Empire of Law and Righteousness;

Evoking humanity’s need to position spiritual values as the most important heritage of the world, since compassionate wisdom is the indispensable element for the development and appropriate evolution of society;

Demonstrating that the creation of the spiritual framework of Maitriyana, which gave birth to the United Buddhist Nations Organization, ensures a proper process for the integration and reconciliation of all the cultural traditions of history, posing Buddhism as the Supreme Cultural Heritage of the entire humankind;

Solemnly proclaiming this Universal Declaration on Buddhism as a Cultural Heritage of Humanity as the greatest contribution to the Liberation of all sentient beings:

 

Part I: Purposes

Article 1 – This Declaration has the Purpose of safeguarding Buddhism as a Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Article 2 – This Declaration has the Purpose to protect the tangible and intangible cultural heritage of Buddhist individuals, institutions and communities.

Article 3 – This Declaration has the Purpose to achieve cooperation and assistance at national and international levels in order to recognize the importance of Buddhism as a Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

 

Part II: Buddhism as Cultural Heritage of Humanity

Article 4 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because its immaterial forms such as uses, representations, expressions, knowledge and techniques have been spread throughout all continents of the world, influencing multiple cultures and civilizations of history.

Article 5 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of humanity because its material forms, such as instruments, relics, artifacts and cultural spaces, are recognized by groups and communities as a cultural heritage.

Article 6 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because its knowledge and techniques have been transmitted from generation to generation throughout history, being a tradition constantly recreated by individuals, institutions and communities depending on their political, economic, cultural and environmental context.

Article 7 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because it contributes to the promotion of respect for cultural diversity, creatively developing practices and knowledge that are compatible with international human rights instruments.

Article 8 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because its intangible cultural manifestations include oral traditions, languages and tongues as vehicles of its intangible cultural heritage, arts, festivities, rituals, handicraft techniques, music and dances, customs and customary norms, forms of organization and authority, medicinal and gastronomic knowings, therapeutic practices and technologies, and knowledge related to mind and the Universe.

Article 9 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because its cultural manifestations include monuments, architectural works, sculptures, paintings, archaeological structures and inscriptions in caverns with historical, artistic and spiritual value.

Article 10 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because its stupas are types of construction or architectural ensembles that illustrate a significant stage in the history of humankind.

Article 11 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity not only because its monuments and sites are of local or national interest, but rather because it is a world heritage with exceptional universal value.

Article 12 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because it represents a masterpiece of brilliance and creativity of the human being.

Article 13 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because its historical manifestation has considerably influenced multiple cultural areas and in multiple periods of time through the exchange of human values, architecture, arts, law and agriculture.

Article 14 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because it is a unique testimony of an ancient civilization that disappeared but is still alive today in the form of a communal cultural tradition.

Article 15 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because its spiritual communes (sanghas) are an outstanding example of traditional tribal habitat, representing a form of millennial culture that can currently be considered as People or Nation.

Article 16 – Buddhism is a Cultural Heritage of Humanity because it is directly and perceptively a living spiritual tradition, whose ideas are of great importance, in addition to the fact that its artistic or literary works – such as the statues of Buddhas or the confection of Sutras – have an exceptional universal significance.

 

Part III: Buddhist Cultural Rights

Article 17 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is safeguarded by means of effective measures such as identification, documentation, research, preservation, protection, promotion, valuation, transmission and revitalization of all its traditional aspects.

Article 18 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be identified, protected, preserved, rehabilitated and transmitted through national assistance and international cooperation, always for the benefit of the present and future generations.

Article 19 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be actively protected and properly revalued.

Article 20 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be considered as a fundamental function in the individual and collective life of its members.

Article 21 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is preserved by Buddhist individuals, institutions or communities.

Article 22 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be studied and investigated by scientists, as long as all kind of dangers threatening its heritage are avoided.

Article 23 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is protected, preserved or revalued through political, economic and legal measures carried out by its own institutions or communities at local and international level.

Article 24 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be fully defended through the sovereignty and self-determination of spiritual communities, before which States of the international community should cooperate.

Article 25 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage shall not be damaged or manipulated by direct or indirect measures of individuals, groups or States.

Article 26 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is safeguarded by the United Buddhist Nations Organization, being able to make Buddhist Councils of exceptional character in order to analyze cases of serious attacks against the Buddhist Cultural Heritage both material and immaterial.

Article 27 – Buddhism has the right that the International Buddhist Ethics Committee is in charge of defending its Cultural Heritage, having the duty to carry out trials in cases of violations of the integrity of Buddhist traditions.

Article 28 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is urgently incorporated into the World Heritage List by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, having the right to be granted with appropriate economic funds for the conservation and protection of such Cultural Heritage of humanity, especially when they are threatened.

Article 29 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is considered as an essential part of the most representative goods of the spiritual nature of humanity.

Article 30 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be taught through educational, artistic and scientific activities, by posing at all times and places the need for protection, conservation, revaluation and rehabilitation of the material and immaterial cultural heritage of the Buddhist Peoples.

Article 31 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is spread through programs, projects and activities that are faithful to traditional practices and knowledge, fostering respect and appreciation for spiritual legacies.

Article 32 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is assisted nationally and internationally by specialists in different fields of social sciences, who can identify, protect, preserve, revalue and rehabilitate the material and intangible Cultural Heritage of Buddhism, always under the supervision of spiritual communities.

Article 33 – Buddhism has the right to let its Cultural Heritage to be adequately disseminated through educational programs and the media where it can be informed about the threats of destruction suffered by the material and immaterial Cultural Patrimony of the spiritual communities.

Article 34 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be taught through formal and non-formal education, carrying out activities that convey knowledges and skills tending to safeguard the integrity of the material and immaterial Cultural Heritage.

Article 35 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is considered as an indispensable element of the collective memory of humanity.

Article 36 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is propitiated and promoted through education of all its cultural expressions, encouraging creativity and strengthening the capacities of cultural evolution.

Article 37 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is recognized in inventories of tangible and intangible cultural heritage, which can be carried out by States, spiritual communities and non-governmental organizations.

Article 38 – Buddhism has the right to let its Cultural Heritage to be expressed and manifested with total freedom in its respective areas.

Article 39 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is guaranteed through respect for its customary customs, which shall not be regulated by the laws of States provided that such customs are compatible with human rights.

Article 40 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is safeguarded by the participation of individuals, institutions and communities that create, maintain and transmit its heritage, especially by spiritual masters.

Article 41 – Buddhism has the right to recognition of its Cultural Heritage that is composed of the works of Buddhist sages and spiritual masters, even if it involves oral or written teachings, contributing to its rescue, registration, study, diffusion and safeguarding as supreme intangible cultural heritage of the entire humanity.

Article 42 –Buddhism has the right to the recognition of its Cultural Heritage composed of the works of the Buddhist sages and spiritual masters, since its cultural value is based on the maintenance of practices and ideas throughout history, in the validity of its impact on daily life of society, the vigorous transmission of traditions, and the production of knowledge contributing to the well-being of all humankind.

Article 43 –Buddhism has the right to have international recognition for its Cultural Heritage that is composed of the works of Buddhist sages and spiritual masters, as they have been representatives who transcended local, regional or national spheres because of their enormous ability to collective participation and convocation.

Article 44 –Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage composed of the works of Buddhist sages and spiritual masters is valued for promoting the fulfillment of fundamental rights, such as the right to life, to personal integrity, to well-being and peace.

Article 45 –Buddhism has the right to international recognition of its Cultural Heritage composed of the works of the Buddhist sages and spiritual masters for directly or indirectly promoting sustainable development, acts of mutual support between human nations and respect for all living things.

Article 46 –Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage, composed of the works of Buddhist sages and spiritual masters, is appreciated by the countries where these great cultural leaders lived, so that the States have the duty to declare these works as Cultural Heritage of the Nation.

Article 47 – Buddhism has the right to the recognition of its Cultural Heritage as a legacy for the international community that does not subvert constitutional public order, which requires that its presence in a given country be effectively protected and defended.

Article 48 – Buddhism has the right to let its Cultural Heritage to be saved by the international community, which should successfully protect this material and immaterial cultural heritage, assuming the responsibility to preserve these cultural expressions of exceptional importance in the face of threats of destruction, manipulation or plagiarism.

Article 49 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be officially recognized as an inheritance from an Ancient Buddhist Civilization that was developed in dozens of Asian countries, even sending missions to Europe, Africa and America.

Article 50 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is declared as a manifestation that is valid for its essential characteristics of great importance, value, scope and meaning in the personal and collective identities of millions of people, as well as having a deep symbolic representation in the development of the history of civilizations.

Article 51 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is recognized as the spiritual manifestation of a type of personal, collective and ethnic identity that has had a significant impact on daily life in communal, local and international fields.

Article 52 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage has recognition for maintaining customs and the invigoration of ideas, by transmitting and developing traditional knowledge and technologies, creatively producing new knowledges that favor the collective well-being of humanity and the Mother Earth.

Article 53 – Buddhism has the right to the protection of its Cultural Heritage with full responsibility on the part of international community.

Article 54 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is understood as a contribution to the construction of a new peaceful, just, democratic and sustainable civilization.

Article 55 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is constituted as a source of liberating experience, peak knowledge and ethical ideals, by providing a series of conciliating principles and values necessary to resolve the world’s conflicts and promote a harmonious, just, humane and evolved society.

Article 56 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is appreciated for contributing to the political, economic, cultural and environmental development of society.

Article 57 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is valued for contributing to a constructive and respectful social criticism.

Article 59 – Buddhism has the right to recognition of its Cultural Heritage for therapeutically benefiting the health of individuals, so that its ancient techniques have potentialities and capabilities that should be taught and used in all contemporary societies, but at the same time by protecting the rights of intellectual property.

Article 60 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is used in transnational activities, establishing networks of cooperation and intercultural dialogue in order to create bridges between nations and also disseminate good practices and knowledge for all humanity.

Article 61 – Buddhism has the right to the prosperity of its Cultural Heritage through free, solidary and mutually beneficial interactions with other cultures of peace, especially in economically underdeveloped countries.

Article 62 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is recognized for developing cultural activities and services that carry identity, values and existential meaning.

Article 63 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is benefited from a spirit of conservation, cooperation and collaboration on the part of the international community, which must recognize the sovereign rights of the Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communes (Sanghas) at all times, protecting and promoting the cultural diversity.

Article 64 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is considered as respectful of human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Article 65 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is considered as jurisdiction of the spiritual commune (Sangha), which has cultural sovereignty over its traditions.

Article 66 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is valued for contributing to the respect and dignity of all the people and cultures of the world.

Article 67 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is appreciated for being aimed at international cooperation and solidarity.

Article 68 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is recognized for complementing the political, economic, cultural and environmental aspects of social development.

Article 69 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is understood at the moment of contributing to the sustainable development of civilization for the benefit of present and future generations.

Article 70 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage has equitable access to all parts of the world through means of expression and dissemination.

Article 71 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is supported for its attitude of openness and balance to other cultures, promoting the free exchange and circulation of ideas and cultural services.

Article 72 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is owned by the entire humanity for creating a territory or field that incites a better world based on Liberty, Equality and Fraternity.

Article 73 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage has contact with other indigenous or tribal peoples from all over the world, with which it will be possible to sign agreements of co-production or cultural co-distribution.

Article 74 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage receives support from inter-State associations as well as by non-governmental organizations.

Article 75 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage has a relationship of mutual empowerment, complementarity and non-subordination with other human rights instruments.

Article 76 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage can be used as a creative tool to reduce war, poverty, ignorance and pollution.

Article 77 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage, that is composed of the sacred texts of Gautama and other great Buddhist masters, is preserved as a set of ethical teachings tending to avoid evil, do good and purify the consciousness of humanity.

Article 78 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is considered as a form of personal and social development, conveying a message of inner and outer serenity.

Article 79 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage improves the living conditions of Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communities, especially the conditions of those living in poverty.

Article 80 – Buddhism has the right tat its Cultural Heritage is a factor of international spiritual influence beyond Asia.

Article 81 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is cared for in museums, universities, associations and institutions around the world.

Article 82 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage, composed of the sacred texts and also of the spiritual relationship between masters and apprentices, is respected, preserved and cared for in schools, universities, communities and the media, having the duty to document, teach and disseminate its teachings in an appropriate way and with the supervision of the Buddhist Peoples.

Article 83 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is composed of the millennial laws created by Gautama Buddha which are still respected and followed, even today, by thousands of Buddhist apprentices and mendicants.

Article 84 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is composed of its ethical values, its compassionate wisdoms and its forms of meditation in order to reach the Awakening and Cure from suffering, which is a supreme cultural expression that has passed from generation to generation during thousands of years.

Article 85 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is considered as a supreme way to achieve self-realization, self-liberation and self-transcendence.

Article 86 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is protected by the Human Rights treaties, being linked to freedom of thought and spirituality, freedom of expression and learning, self-determination and other cultural rights.

Article 87 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage not only be considered as mere property, since crimes against property are very different from crimes against cultural human rights.

Article 88 – Buddhism has the right that its Cultural Heritage is valued as a way of promoting Truth, Justice, Reconciliation and Human Dignity, finding the Purpose of Existence.

 

Part IV: Ratification

Article 89 – This Universal Declaration will remain open to the acceptance of States and to adhesion of all Buddhist Peoples and Spiritual Communities, even inviting non-members institutions of the United Buddhist Nations Organization to ratify this extraordinary Universal Declaration of Buddhism as Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

 

Written by: H.E. Master Maitreya Samyaksambuddha, President of the United Buddhist Nations Organization

March 26th, 2017

 

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