Attorney at the Court of Appeal
"Ut corpora nostra sine mente, sic civitas sine lege (non stat)."
"Like our bodies cannot function (stand) without the mind, the State likewise cannot function without the Law."
Throughout the ages the above classic definition of law and its function in an organized society, elegantly verbalised by Cicero, that great legislator of the Roman era, stands as a beacon as both a starting point and a frame of reference for anyone who wants to seriously approach the science of law.
When Cicero equates the law with the mind principle of the State, does he mean that the law is a sterile, emotionless and feelingless system of rules that was meant to become a "scarecrow" for its citizens? Or is it perhaps the way in which modern man has come to understand and approach every aspect of the mind principle?
At a time when mankind was about to leave behind the Middle-ages, a very vulgar pact was formed between the then rising scientific community and the already established and powerful Church. Scientists would be allowed to pursue their research only if they agreed to exclude anything metaphysical from their endeavours. Science would have to be contained within the confines of the materialistic worldview alone. Metaphysics remained within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Church along with the divine, or universal, law, which it had already turned into a scarecrow, a means of controlling and terrorizing the citizens of the then known world who had to face all kinds of Inquisitions. Within that historical frame, within that distortion of the universal divine law, should it be a surprise that human-state law evolved the way it did? Should it be a surprise that citizens of today regard both state law and those who serve it with contempt?
In Cicero's time there was for scientists no distinction in their pursuit of knowledge between what we today term the materialistic and what Aristotle defined as the metaphysical. The acquisition of knowledge simply meant the mapping out of the unknown, the fate and the destiny of all incarnated individualities, whether acting individually or acting collectively as a State upon the dense physical plane. The great legislators of those times realised that state law can never serve the citizens if it becomes antithetical to universal law, that which holds together the entire manifested universe, that which holds together man, the microcosm of the macrocosm and, inevitably, that which should be the force that holds together the State.
Therefore state law could never be a system of intellectual rationalisations. It could never be a series of sterile minded constructions implemented in order to resist evolution and to punish those who disagree with the accepted norms; implemented in order to manipulate citizens and to elevate to places of authority those who seek power over their fellow men and who seek to enslave. In a State of citizens whose desire it is to actively participate in the evolution of human awareness and not resist it, the laws should be in total correspondence with universal law, which is the only way to intelligently co-operate with Life Itself, the only way for the State to stand and function with the same divine potentiality as that of man.
The conflict between state and universal law was often dealt with in that wonderful ancient school of initiation known as "theatre". Through the unfoldment of the tragedy the spectators were brought face to face with the catastrophic results of human folly. In the end the Exodus always called forth catharsis, an experience of self-purification for all the participants.
A classic diachronic tragedy is "Oedipus Rex" by Sophocles, a very talented play writer and an initiate in the ancient mysteries. In a scene where Oedipus has reached the peak of his folly, where he elevates himself as the state king whose word should be regarded over and above everyone and everything, human or divine, the loyal seer tries desperately to implement the element of humility in him so that he may face what he's calling forth. But Oedipus remains forever complacent. He turns to the seer with utmost arrogance, huge rage and pettiness and accuses him of what will soon prove to be his own personal state of awareness. In a phrase that remains classic, Oedipus seals his fate forever by demanding the universe on his own terms, telling the seer "you are blind in your ears, you are blind in your mind and you are blind in your eyes.", Sophocles, "Oedipus Rex", v.371. In this verse, using nine times the letter tau, sounding like spitting instead of speaking, Sophocles defines the Jocasta syndrome, or Mother's Awareness, a horrible state of existence for any man or State.
In another play of Sophocles, "Antigoni," Antigoni is facing the results of defying the state law as imposed by her uncle Creon. She chose to consciously and willingly contradict him because she felt that his demands were violating the divine-universal laws. She had no true and solid male lead to support while her own sister had already decided to comply with the state law out of fear. So she did the only thing that was humanly possible for her at the time, she listened to her own heart, she embraced what she felt were the dictates of the divine law and she acted accordingly. Then she was brought face to face with the petty state tyrant, who, in his arrogance in believing he had power over "his" citizens, sentenced her to death, outraged that she dared to defy his laws. In that moment she turns to him and without fear, without anger, without blame, she defines the preponderance of the universal law: "I wasn't born to join in hating, I was born to join in loving.", Sophocles, "Antigoni", v.521.
In our present time humanity finds itself at a crossroad. With the Cry of the Eagle having sounded we are facing the challenge of having to prove that we've come of age, that we are able to take our fate into our own hands. We need to intelligently co-operate with the cosmic evolution of awareness instead of resisting it. Our societies need to correspond, need to become compatible with the dictates of the universal law instead of elevating and rewarding greed and the petty desire to acquire power over other human beings. We need to overcome our Oedipus blindness that stagnates our awareness.
Unfortunately our legal systems and our laws are deteriorating by the day. There is such an over-abundance of legislation, mostly due to endless reckoning between various "lobbying" forces, that even members of the legal profession no longer have a clear, safe picture of what constitutes The Law of the Land. At the same time it is those same forces that are trying to turn each and every organised modern society into a police state by depriving the citizens, slowly but steadily, of even the most basic human rights and freedom. Many of our fellow human beings choose to be oblivious, too busy having fun or sex. Others wake up momentarily only to find themselves succumbing to the fear of Antigoni's sister, ready to trade their divine birthrights in order not to lose their house or their car or their career. Mother's Awareness is already threatening to become a permanent status, a common state of awareness for all mankind, an existence too vile to contemplate.
Having to face such a harsh objective reality the serious scientist of law is left wondering how better to serve his science from both a theoretical approach and a necessary and inevitable practical and professional one.
Nemo plus juris in alium transferre potest quam ipse habet.
"In law no one can transfer to someone else more than he himself possesses."
The above is one of the fundamental axioms of every legal system throughout the ages. Time and time again members of the legal profession worldwide find themselves quoting it in order to make a case or to reach a decision or a verdict. Yet, how many have pondered on it, trying to find its applications in themselves?
At this point I'd like to pause for a while in order to share my own personal experience of the impact the Warrior's Path has had upon my personal and professional life. When I first met Théun Mares, my personal life had reached a dead end. Professionally I was part of what is wrong in the legal systems of today. I enjoyed the glittering self-image of the lawyer. I operated my business pursuing the maximum possible profit in order to provide myself with the lifestyle I thought would make me happy. Although I have always had principles, I was nonetheless ready to momentarily look the other way, ready to compromise if it helped the business deal. In a nutshell, I had lost heart in practicing law.
Once I started working on myself, applying the tools of the Toltec Legacy in my everyday life, I slowly but steadily started to recall how much I had enjoyed studying law in my student years and how much I had enjoyed working with it in my first years as a lawyer. I was now able to see how I had been willing to give up my initial dream to become a scientist of the law, and how I had allowed myself to become seduced by the shiny icon, the glamour of the executive. I had readily traded my dream for a better self-image in which, filled with vanity, I thought I would find self-worth. In all of this I had forgotten another fundamental legal axiom: res perit suo domino, that which is lost is its master's, that is, the loss falls always to the owner of that which has been lost.
After I was able to again find heart in working with law I realised it is the fate that I chose for this lifetime in order to learn and to be of service to others in the process. It was the path I chose to walk in order to map out the unknown, in order to acquire new knowledge which, in turn, I could share. It was the path that the more I walked, the more I could turn into myself and find within more of what I had to offer, more of that with which to serve. In a nutshell, it is for me a Path with a Heart.
At the same time I realised how dire the situation has become for all the legal systems worldwide. I was now able to see how all the axioms, all the principles I had been taught that made law the science that holds together the State, were being taken away slowly but steadily. They were being replaced by what in the law is known as mal grammatica (bad grammar), an endless flow of legislation that casts a shadow upon what used to be clear and precise. The law is becoming something vague and strange, something that is being regarded by the citizens of today with doubt and, eventually, with fear. It is becoming a scarecrow that is meant to serve only those forces that perform all "the lobbying", those forces that seek to enslave. Within that frame, what would be the modus operandi of the scientist of law today?
Rex non potest peccare.
"The King can do no wrong".
The above is another sentence, enshrouded in the Latin language, trying to sell itself as one of the diachronic legal axioms. Diachronic it is, but the difference between that sentence and the axioms mentioned above is plain and obvious. The "King" or Big Brother or Mother's Awareness, can do no wrong! What a farce, what a travesty of the true and real science. Yet, it is rapidly becoming the established mentality, the core that vibrates behind the scenes and creates the larger part of modern legislation, distributing fear to the citizens. How are we to expose and remove that cancer from what Cicero defines as corpora nostra?
Allow me to somewhat paraphrase one of the wonderful parables of that great seer of the 20th century, Kahlil Gibran.
Once a traveller who was walking down a path came across a field. In that field he saw a scarecrow, scaring away the crows. The traveller was impressed by the scarecrow's persistence. So he asked, "Aren't you tired of standing in this lonely field?" The scarecrow replied, "The joy of scaring is a deep and lasting one, and I never tire of it". Then the traveller was momentarily impressed by the scarecrow's efficiency. So he asked, "How are you able to constantly scare the crows away?" Once challenged, the scarecrow had no other option but to reveal to the traveller its secret. "In order to be able to scare the others, you need to be stuffed with straw".
The legal scientist of today, once he has searched within himself and discovered his own personal value, his own capacity of serving and offering, may turn to those who try to convince us that the King can do no wrong, point and shout, "The King is without clothes". His voice may be in solitude at first. But eventually he will be joined by the voices of those who have succumbed to the fear of Antigoni's sister. In my humble opinion, for the legal scientist of today, this is not just an option, it is not even a duty, it is imperative.
"Then a lawyer said, "But what of our Laws, master?" And he answered: "...What shall I say of these save that they too stand in the sunlight, but with their backs to the sun? They see only their shadows, and their shadows are their laws. And what is the sun to them but a caster of shadows? And what is it to acknowledge the laws but to stoop down and trace their shadows upon the earth? But you who walk facing the sun, what images drawn on the earth can hold you?"
Kahlil Gibran, "The Prophet"
Let us take heart, let us rejoice in life, let us join in loving, let us remove the mal grammatica from our communities and let us walk facing the sun with nostalgia, the sweet pain for the place of our true origin.