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Damanhur at UN
On the occasion of the International Day of Happiness organized at the United Nations on March 20, 2016, Crotalo Sesamo, who was present in New York at the "I Do Happiness" event as a Damanhurian ambassador, read this message from the Sages of Damanhur.
Damanhur: Community, Vision and Action
The Responsibility for Happiness
Esteemed audience and dear friends, We are aware that reflecting on happiness means that we are part of the lucky ones who are not facing problems of survival, violence and war, forced immigration, health emergencies or hunger. We say this with the full spiritual awareness that no-one in the world will ever be able to achieve happiness, as long as there are people suffering. Just as a wise saying goes, “A mother can only be as happy as the most unhappy of her children,” one day we will comprehend and feel inside our hearts and bodies that no human being can be truly content as long as there are other beings who suffer. This includes our whole earth family: all the animals, plants, and other forms of life—both visible and invisible—whom we share our beautiful planet with. We will start to experience happiness, as a species, only when we learn to perceive the world and the universe as an integrated and intelligent whole, where we humans have responsibilities and duties, even before having rights. A fundamental element for the respect of the whole of life is the protection of the identities and traditions of each People—especially Indigenous Peoples, who are the spiritual elders of humanity—because it is through a sense of belonging to a larger community that we can participate in the Earth greater rhythms. One of Damanhur's objectives for the coming years - in collaboration with all those who feel a sensitivity to this project - is the realization of the Temple of Peoples, a space where representatives of the peoples of the Earth can meet with each other, share experiences and wisdom, and work together for the safeguarding of the planet. We are hopeful that the experience of intentional communities like Damanhur, Federation of Communities, can serve as a useful example for the creation of new societies based on the quest for happiness, meaning and spiritual and human realization. Damanhur—now numbering almost 1,000 citizens of many different nationalities—was founded in the foothills of the Italian Alps in 1975 by a group of visionaries, gathered around the philosopher and mystic Oberto Airaudi, Falco Tarassaco. They shared the impossible dream of creating a living laboratory for a just and enlightened future, where happiness corresponds to the awareness of one's evolution, and to feeling that one's existence has a meaning. With over 40 years of experience Damanhur has now reached a stage of maturity. We have experimented with all aspects of life, and we have realized that happiness is also the ability to participate in an altruistic and sincere way in everything that comes from the world, be it joyful or challenging. Happiness is presence. It is sharing our life's journey with others; it is the quality of our relationships; it is the feeling of wholeness when we heal the pain of our apparent division and fragmentation. The creation of a path to happiness is a direct responsibility for each one of us. Each action we take, every choice we make and also every thought we entertain has an impact on the reality we live in. Happiness is also made of order and discipline: physical, mental and spiritual. We must work to know ourselves, and learn to guide our emotions, desires and actions in a positive, optimistic and creative way. Only by knowing ourselves deeply can we reach harmony. Happiness can be developed only through altruistic acts of will, kept alive and repeated through time. This process is much more powerful and effective if shared with like-minded individuals, who offer their energy and commitment to each in order to create something good and positive; something that can spread like a seed of hope and last through time—beyond ourselves as well. This is the time to start building equitable, balanced and therefore happy societies—through determination, optimism and a visionary pragmatism. We are in the heart of one of the most important Institutions of our planet, and we hope that concrete initiatives can start from here. Concrete projects based on the sincere intention of individuals and nations, so that the happiness we are talking about—happiness that is made of awareness and participation—may become the natural condition for every human being. The quest for happiness is the answer to the risk of extinction of the human race. Thank you for your attention.