Today, on the 23rd September of 2003, in Patras, under the property of the University Teacher, but mostly with the uppermost property which each of us carries, the one of the Citizen, we state the following thoughts and our worries, by considering the formation of the European Constitution.
Ι. Greece is promoted towards the future, having as a tool one Education, which stays even more without vigor, which becomes even more partial, which promotes the illiteracy in Science and the strictly technical character of Knowledge. The Classic Education, the Paideia, the only one capable to develop modern Ideas and Ideologies, which shield Democracy and give prominence to the value system of Humanism and Oecumenicity, is steadily disdained and marginalized in the place, in which it was born. But, only the Classical Education, the Paideia, with its two, supplying each other and parallel branches, the Philosophy and the Democracy, can form the complete Man, as such in the past the Ionian Hylozoists and the great generation of the Sophists were, as well as the Pupils of these Teachers along the centuries. We consider that the safety valve for our Society is to put as a frontispiece apothegm in our Universities and our Educational and Research Institutes Plato’s view, as stated in his Menexenos (246e-247a): «πᾶσά τε ἐπιστήμη χωριζομένη δικαιοσύνης καὶ τῆς ἄλλης ἀρετῆς πανουργία, οὐ σοφία φαίνεται». This apothegm also has to be adopted by the Municipal Potentates and the State Officials, whose role develops joins with Education. We ourselves, as teachers of the Natural Sciences, are convinced that only by the promotion of Classical Education on a Oecumenic level, the findings of the Research of our own disciplines shall not be provided for the overgrow of the uncontrollable Global Corporatocracy, but for Peace and the cure of the maladies plaguing the suffering Peoples of the planet. We also consider as an imperative need the freeing of our Universities from introversion, and of making an opening towards Society, of speaking about the problems of Society, and of articulating a speech which refers to Society.
ΙΙ. According to the concordant opinion of the vast majority of the Europeans we are Citizens of the newest Federation in the world, which has been formatted after a longstanding cultural and politic gestation, namely the United Europe. We we’re anticipating that this would yield safeness and trust to us, as well as the reassurance of the quality of the World which we are going to offer to our children. But, in consideration of the final formation of the discussed European Constitution, we are possessed by deep and fundamental apprehensions, since we do not regard that the political and social face of Europe is clarified, and we doubt that Europe shall finally achieve to legislate its own issues. Element of our worry, which emerges through the historical memory of the past epochs, is the pressure of various dogmas to contribute to the formation of the political morpheme of the European Federation, while we realize the existence of Political Leaders, who offer to discuss about this issue, and seem to ignore that the Religions are elements of the Civilization of the Peoples and not carriers of Civilization, and additionally, their dogmatic character does not allow them to be nursery of Ideas, which sprout up only under the condition of the democratic dialogue. These concrete Leaders of the State-members seem to ignore that the religious turn of the political frontispiece of our Federation shall raise crusade memories to Peoples, with which we are friends, and which we also need for going along with them in a peaceful and developmental manner. But, the element of our most intense worry as Citizens, is the visible concretion of a closed socio-political group of Leaders, which, by functioning in an oligarchic manner, shall create geopolitical and geostrategic events, not for the benefit of the Citizens of Europe, but in order to maintain, to reproduce, and to bequeath within a closed system their power, drawing its confirmation from the transatlantic President of the latent Directorates of the Corporatocracy, who lobby for their own universal state. The United Europe shall obtain meaning for its Citizens, in the case it shall accomplish of becoming one great Amphictyony of Peoples and Cultures, where the same ethical values and the own perception about the political shall be followed, and the common economic interests shall be entrenched, and where the prevailing role shall be attributed, according to Aristotle, to the political society, that is the Society of the Citizens
ΙΙΙ. It was proposed, as a conclusion for the European Constitution, Thucydides’ apothegm (2.37.1): «Χρώμεθα γὰρ πολιτείᾳ οὐ ζηλούσῃ τοὺς τῶν πέλας νόμους, παράδειγμα δὲ μᾶλλον αὐτοὶ ὄντες τισὶν ἢ μιμούμενοι ἑτέρους. καὶ ὄνομα μὲν διὰ τὸ μὴ ἐς ὀλίγους ἀλλ’ ἐς πλείονας οἰκεῖν δημοκρατία κέκληται». We agree and we consider this as the appropriate message, whose meaning the Peoples of Europe have to espouse, but whose recipient is transatlantic. Despite the maladies and the wounds accumulated over the whole planet by the Colonialism and by the politics of European Leaders of the past, but also of the present, the space of Europe does not cease to be the one, in which all the great and fundamental ideas were carried, resulting from Protagoras’ apothegm, «πάντων χρημάτων μέτρον ἄνθρωπος», with apical between all those ideas being the idea of Democracy. Many of these ideas where subversive and revolutionary, and from these philosophical, as well as social movements, where born, which shocked the world and rendered the Citizen, instead of the inert matter, the one who gives sense to its own history. These are our own ethical and social Laws, identical to the Ideas of Humanism, of Oecumenism, of Democracy, and of the constant dispute of our own society, and these laws have to follow the ones beyond the Atlantic, and not us, the laws of the planet leaders. We traverse the period of the most merciless form of imperialism, which Man confronted during its history. The Directorates have learned nothing from the phrase of the, murdered by them, President of Panama, Omar Torrijos, “the bullet which shall kill the Ideas has not yet being made”. If Europe will not resist in every way and with every means, then the great European Federation shall collapse.
ΙV. We do not believe that the completion of the political morpheme of the United Europe shall be an easy and fast process. On the contrary, we think that it shall last for many years, under difficult and painful procedures, as well as revolutionary overthrows and ruptures between the Society and the Leaderships, each and every time the last will attempt the manipulation of the Citizens. The principal role in the formation of a Europe friendly to Man shall be called to play significantly the great subversive, and also disincentive power, the Society of Citizens, which shall put in reexamination and reformulation, but according to modern rules of function and application, the Direct Democracy. This might seem to be not grounded and utopic, but by the enervation of the central State Authorities, and for cultural, politic, social and economic reasons, it is deterministically sure that the entity of Polis shall arise again, within the context of a Self-instituted Society. That, which we have to learn from the Ancient Greek Society, since it is of great meaning and usefulness for us today, is its power for being self-constituted, that is, all of the Citizens to decide together commonly, according to which laws and rules they want to be self-governed, and then, the very same Citizens, to be in place to impugn them, and constitute other, again by themselves. Modern Europe has to leverage as a prototype the applied paradigm of the Self-instituted Society, that is the one of the Ancient Greek Polis, which was autonomous, self-legislating, and autotelic. The very same Citizens of the constituting Society were stating their laws by themselves, according to which they wanted to be self-governed, assigned their Judges by themselves, set their Courts, and by themselves, but also commonly, decided for every work or fact, which concerned their Society. For this reason, the Athenian Democratic Polity was, within the History of Mankind, the only structural and complete Congregationalism, whose deviation, that is Ochlocracy, was asserting the rule, according to which the one which prevails is the one decided by the People. Let us not forget that the phenomenon of the Greek Democratic Polity was unique within Humankind, since it was absolutely identified with the popular will, in an epoch where, all over the World, the law was identified with the will of the absolute Monarch, or of other closed, dark Priesthoods. Let us take into consideration that the institutionalization of the unadulterated Democracy was achieved after extremely bloody social Struggles, which lasted for centuries. Also, its legacy for Man is imprinted into the political testament of Thucydides (6.39.2): «ξύμπαντα ἐν δημοκρατίᾳ ἰσομοιρεῖν. ὀλιγαρχία δὲ τῶν μὲν κινδύνων τοῖς πολλοῖς μεταδίδωσι, τῶν δ’ ὠφελίμων οὐ πλεονεκτεῖ μόνον, ἀλλὰ καὶ ξύμπαντ’ ἀφελομένη ἔχει».
To the globally principal expressions of a Self-Instituted Society belongs the Greek Constitution of Epidaurus, of 1822. After the enslavement of the Greeks to the Romans, and the proclamation of Octavian into Emperor, our World, until the half of the 19th century, did not experience Democracy nowhere on our planet, and for every any other historical epoch, and also the only way of ruling was given by the divine right totalitarian, monarchic decrees. After nineteen and a half centuries of absolute barbarism, in 1821, the tormented Greeks revolt, and step by their own decision into a triple act of self-organization of their Society, a) the form a Constitution, something unheard for that era, b) they nominate an Elective Governor and not a Monarch, and c) they state the, first in History, legal text about the abolishment of slavery, which, according to the article Θ′ of the Constitution, reads as follows: «Εἰς τὴν Ἑλληνικὴν Ἐπικράτειαν οὔτε πωλεῖται, οὔτε ἀγοράζεται ἄνθρωπος, ἀργυρώνητος δὲ παντὸς γένους καὶ πάσης θρησκείας, ἅμα πατήσας τὸ Ἑλληνικὸν ἔδαφος, εἶναι ἐλεύθερος καὶ ἀπὸ τὸν δεσπότην αὐτοῦ ἀκαταζήτητος». It must not be elusive from any Active Citizen the fact that, in order for avoiding the rebirth of Democracy in the History of Humankind, which put into dispute the divine right totalitarian, monarchic power, the Caesaropapism, already from the 3rd century AD, and afterwards, systematically destroyed pitiless the spiritual, artistic and architectural achievements of the Greeks, since they were the budding of the Democratic perception, which was continuously refueled by them. With the monstrous edict of Theodosius, «ἅπαντα τὰ Ἑλλήνων εἰς γῆν φέρειν», as well as with the acts of his predecessors and ancestors, hundreds of thousands of Greek Temples and Libraries, innumerable sculptures and other works of Art, as well as the vast majority of the Greek Books were destroyed, the Philosophical Schools were prosecuted, while a vast number of Greeks who insisted into the concept of the Political system of Democracy and the cure of Paideia, martyred. Even the ethnic name Έλλην was stooped to oblivion. The cause for the greatest crime, which was committed against the global Civilization, was the defeat and the burial of Democracy. Let any European Citizen be kept alert about the new directed movement of the modern contractors of deconstruction, which unfortunately is also being developed within our Universities. The essence of Democracy is not self-evident, and must be continuously shielded and promoted with Paideia.
VI. The Europeans who regard the property of the Citizen as paramount, are obligated not to forget that the unification of Europe does not stem from the Dark Medieval Ages of the Papocaesarism and the Caesaropapism, did not draw its dynamics from the dogmas and the monarchical powers, did not emerged from them as a political morpheme. Europe was mould and developed within the world of Ideas, constituted by the Hellenic and the Roman world, by the Renaissance, by the French Encyclopaedists, by the German Philologists and by the theory of Karl Marx. For these reasons, we are called to synthesize the great European Federation as one united, prevailing, and self-institutional Society of the Citizens, which shall appropriate the characteristics of Autonomy, of Vigilantism and of Autotely, and in which the decisive Values shall be the Democracy, the Isegoria, the Isonomy, the Isopoliteia, and the Paideia, with our own proposal to the leveling globalization, the value system of Oecumenicity.
VII. As absolutely convinced that the authentic University Teacher is the one who functions mainly as the active and conscious Citizen, we take the initiative for the formation of a Citizen’s Movement, which shall awake the civic mindedness, and shall render Greece capable of stating its modern Logos within the formation of the great European Federation of the Peoples and the Civilizations.
Professor of the University of Patras
Professor of the University of Patras
Professor of the University of Patras