The Doctrine of Humanity--Aphorisms

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The Doctrine of Humanity--Aphorisms


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The Doctrine of Humanity







That which can save us is faith, is religion. What would save us would be religious unity. What will save us is the sect that will love religious unity to the point of being the seed of unity; it is the sect which will bring about Liberty, Fraternity, Equality, and Unity.           (PIERRE LEROUX)








Luc Desages

Auguste Desmoulins







Four years ago, under the monarchy, the principles set forth in the various works that form the foundation of the Doctrine of Humanity, and which we gather together here in the form of aphorisms, brought together a number of families, and led them to live in a common research of association.

At the beginning of this work, the Doctrine of the Humanity based on the law of life, the TRINITY, consisted of a science of God, of Man, and of Humanity; it affirmed the great principle of human Solidarity; it had faith in Freedom, Fraternity, and Equality; it was thus particularly a matter of Cognition: but it necessarily also involved Sentiment and Sensation, and thus, in order to embrace being completely, a political principle of organization and an economic law of subsistence.

It is in the face of the different aptitudes which human nature presents, it is in the middle of the obstacles to any kind of material life, that the principle of organization and the law of subsistence were discovered.

The revolution of February came. It recognized and proclaimed the right of association. A great number of associations are today being attempted. Some will not have to fight the material difficulties, as we do, but all will fail inevitably if they did not clarify religious principles, and perhaps some law of organization and subsistence. The moment has come, perhaps, for all those animated by our faith to go out into the world and announce what we are not afraid to call the Good News of our time.

About to devote ourselves entirely to this mission, we need to summarize the Doctrines in a series of Aphorisms, which undoubtedly demand, in order to be comprehended, great expansion, but which present a complete sequence of all the formulas that it would differently be necessary to seek and study in a great number of separate works.

Another reason committed us to make this summary of the principal points of the Doctrines. Since the revolution, we have been subject to calumnies of all sorts: we wanted to make manifest the elevation and purity in our dogmas.

Finally, there are a good number of the truths upheld and propagated by us which are used to adorn so-called “systems" and to veil their blotches and impurities. This perfidious alloy of truth and error will disappear when these truths, beheld in the place which they must occupy, and which they indeed occupy in the true Doctrines, will have been shown so attached to the law of organization which we call Triad, that it will be impossible to take them separately and make an impious use of them.

It is not a Symbol which we put forward. Humanity will only be possible as a Symbol when a great number of men and women can meet and agree upon the principles of a common faith. We believe firmly that this faith will be that which profess today.

While waiting for this Symbol, we make individual work and of simple proposal. There is the motive which commits us to sign a work whose rectitude has as a guarantee only our own understanding, though it is always possible and easy to assure ourselves that we drew well from the sources.

As for the sources, we will mention mainly the following works:


De la Doctrine du Progrès continu ou de la Perfectibilité;—Du lien qui unit le Dix-Huitième Siècle au Dix-Septième;—Des mystères du Christianisme (Revue Encyclopédique, année 1834).

Articles Certitude, Conscience, Consentement, Confession (Encyclopédie Nouvelle).

Réfutation de l'Eclectisme.

De Dieu ou de la Vie dans l'Etre universel et dans les êtres particuliers (Revue Indépendante, troisième volume, 1842).

De l'Humanité, de son principe et de son avenir.

De l'Égalité.

Discours aux philosophes et aux politiques.

D'une Religion nationale ou du Culte.

De la Ploutocratie ou du Gouvernement des riches.

Le Carosse de M. Aguado.

De la Recherche des biens matériels.

Discours sur la Doctrine de l'Humanité.

Trilogie sur l'Institution du Dimanche.

And, in general, all the philosophical articles in the Revue Sociale.









The individual cannot live—spiritually, morally, or materially—without forming society with others.

No society exists—spiritually, morally, or materially—without religion.

Indeed, human beings would not know how to live in the simplest society without coming together around certain truths, without establishing among themselves a common law founded on a certain idea of justice, and finally without accomplishing themselves, or forcing others to accomplish for them, certain labors.

Knowledge of this imperative need for religion explains all the divisions and also all the progress of the human race.

 The human race has always sought Religion; and from this search come all its hopes, it sufferings, and its disastrous errors. Religion is gradually revealed to it; from this gradual revelation come the conquests of the human race, its enlightenment, and its perfection.

Today, that continuous and progressive revelation of Religion shows us a new world, a higher idea of life, and the possibility of making that idea a reality; the present generation is restless under the empire of mysterious presentiments, and feels pulled by an irresistible desire towards the world to come: everything prepares for an immense and universal transformation.

Today, human beings know their own perfectibility, and seek the city founded on Liberty, Fraternity, Equality and Unity.

None of these things are yet realized: from this fact arises all our miseries—whether material, moral, or intellectual—larger miseries perhaps than any which mankind endured in the course of its previous evolutions; but from this same fact arise all our greatness, all our hopes, and all our enlightenment.

We feel and we judge the extent of our present evils only because the principle which must triumph over them already lights our hearts.

We ourselves suffer, as do our fellows, from the cruel attacks of hunger and destitution, but we know that Humanity can and must free itself;

We suffer, in ourselves and in our fellows, from the immorality of men, from their injustice, and their divisions; but we can only know and measure the evil which is in them because a higher conception of Morals and social Organization enlightens us;

We suffer, in ourselves and in our fellows, from the irreligion and hypocrisy of men, their darkness, and their ignorance; but we can see these things and be painfully struck by them only because Religion starts to shine in our eyes.





Under the title of THE DOCTRINE OF HUMANITY, we present to the world a collection of truths that are only the extension, appropriate to our time, of Christianity and all the great religions of the past.

The basis of Religion is the TRINITY: Religion, as we conceive it, is made up of Dogma, Morals (or Social Organization), and Political Economy.

THE DOCTRINE OF HUMANITY is what Revelation has always been, Life coming to consciousness of itself, triple and one at the same time: Dogma—Organization—Subsistence.

Dogma forms the first part of the DOCTRINE OF HUMANITY, and relates to Science;

Organization forms the second, and relates to Morality;

The law of Subsistence forms the third, and relates to Political Economy.

Dogma is a collection of truths concerning the life of God, of Humanity, and of Nature, connected together by the same principle and linking human beings in a common and progressive conception of Life.

Morality is human association as it results from the true laws of our nature. Morality is not only a rule of mores, a law of the social relations; it is the society manifesting itself,—it is a Politics. The word Organization expresses this idea exactly.

Political Economy is the science of the Consumption, Production, and Distribution of the things necessary to the life. Its cause, and its effect, is this aspect of the universal fact of relation that one calls nutrition. The word Subsistence expresses this idea exactly.

The summary which follows is thus divided into three parts.











1. GOD is LIFE triple and one; he is at the same time impersonal and distinct from individual beings, although immanent in each one of them.

GOD is simultaneously:

BEING OF BEINGS, eternal and infinite Power to be, including and bearing in its bosom all beings, and embracing the Universe as a Totality,

SPIRIT Of LOVE immanent within Being itself and within Beings, connecting them with the creatures, summing up their manifestations as they take place, and causing them to produce new things, in order to lift them up more and more in Life, and intervening in the Universe as Cause,

UNIVERSAL LIGHT creating the individual beings, intervening, in the name of Life or Universal Light, in each act of the life of these individual beings, to make them united and seeing itself, penetrating itself, and conscious of itself through man and in man, type and summary of creations; and appearing in the Universe as Existence.

GOD, Infinite Being, Life triple and one, is at the same time and indivisibly:


Being of Beings—Spirit of Love—Universal Light,











2. HUMANITY is a species.

The Human species is an ideal being composed of a multitude of real beings, who are themselves Humanity in germ, Humanity in the virtual state.

Each human being is a real being, in which lives, in the virtual state, the ideal being called Humanity.

Each human being is Humanity.




3. The human being, made in the image of God, is, like God, triple and one.

The human being is simultaneously sensation—sentiment—cognition, indivisibly united and simultaneously manifested.




Of the life of human beings




4. Human life in the latent state is an aspiration, in the manifest state it is a communion.

5. Each human being is united with their fellows, with God, and with the Universe; directly with their fellows, indirectly with God and with the Universe, in a direct communion with their fellows.

The true formula of life among human beings is this:

To love God in oneself and in others.

To be loved by God in others.

To love others by God in oneself.

Not to separate God, and oneself, and other creatures.

God does not appear apart from the world, and our life is not separated from that of other creatures.





6. Human beings live spiritually in and through one another.

7. They are in solidarity.

8. Human Solidarity is eternal.

9. The life in each human being is revealed by an indefinite series of existences encompassing time in its three aspects of Past, Present, and Future.

The idea of time is identical to the idea of existence.

10. The future life does not differ in essence from the present life or the past life, for it is only that life in a new manifestation.

11. Each human being is, has been, and will be Humanity; each human being dies and is reborn, on the earth, in Humanity.

The identity of each human being and his personality is judged and preserved in God, who transmits it with new conditions of existence, and with innateness, which creates for each human being a relation with their previous existences and an attraction toward their future existences.




12. The human being is perfectible, and Humanity is perfectible.

13. The goal of life for the human being is to realize more and more in Unity and Communion that being, Humanity, and to develop that being in its triple aspect sensation-sentiment-knowledge.

Every act that tends to that Unity and that development is an absolute good;

Every act that tends to injure that Unity and to hinder that development is relatively bad.

Happiness is tied to the practice of life thus understood.

14. The law of life in the individual is progress, of which the formula is this: To change by persisting, to persist in changing, and to aspire to realize more and more the ideal type, Humanity.

15. The law of life of the species, and in the species is progress, of which this is the formula: To change by persisting, to persist in changing, and to aspire to realize more and more the ideal type, Humanity.

16. There is a continual reversibility of the life of the species onto the life of each individual;

17. The life of each of the individual beings serves to constitute more and more the life of the species.

18. The reversibility of progress redeems at each instant all human beings.

GOD or the UNIVERSAL LIFE, for which there is neither time nor space, and which sees the final aim of all things, permits evil and suffering as necessary phases by which creatures must pass, in order to arrive at a state of happiness that the creatures do not see, and which consequently they do not presently enjoy, as creatures, but that God sees and which consequently every creature enjoys in themselves virtually because they will enjoy it actually one day.






19. All that exists is the Universe. All the beings, all the creatures that people that Universe constitute the infinite creation.

20. The law of life in the Universe is the Trinity: men, animals, plants, mineral, stars or light, every being of nature, reflect the Infinite Being or God, who is himself the Trinity. For life in the Universe is the penetration in a certain measure of the Infinite into the individual and finite being. That penetration of the Infinite into the finite takes place by simultaneity; that is to say that the three attributes incorporated in the nature of God penetrate simultaneously and indivisibly the individual or finite being.

Thus intelligence is found everywhere, even the beings most devoid of intelligence,

Love is found everywhere as well, even in the beings most devoid of sentiment,

Activity is also found everywhere, even in inert things.

From that law of the penetration of the Infinite into the heart of the finite results at once the unity and the variety of the Universe.


Of Nutrition.


21. Life is nourished by the products of Life, and thus increases and is perfected.

22. Life is distinguished in three great manifestations, called mineral kingdom, vegetable kingdom, animal kingdom.

23. Humanity really forms a separate kingdom, which could be called and which some thinkers have called the hominal kingdom.

24. The vegetable is nourished by the mineral.

25. The vegetable is nourished by the result of the combinations of the mineral with the products or the remains of the vegetables or by dead animals, or with the detritus living beings.

26. Thus the vegetable is nourished by the products of Life.

27. The animal is nourished by the vegetable or by the animal in the state of a cadaver.

28. Thus the animal is nourished by the products of Life.

29. Vegetables are minerals transformed by vegetable life.

30. Animals are vegetables transformed by animal life.

31. Animal life rises by grafting itself onto animal life itself and nourishing itself from that life in other animals.

32. Animals nourish themselves on one another only because there are species and genera.

33. The animal, to the degree that it rises, nourishes itself on inferior species.

34. The genera and species are successive creations.

35. More and more perfect creatures appear to the degree that Life succeeds Life. It is thus that on Earth Humanity has followed animality, each human being an animal transformed by reason and united with Humanity.









The Couple and Society.


36. The human being as an individual is a first manifestation of the Human-Humanity.

The Family is a second manifestation of the Human-Humanity.

Society is a third manifestation of the Human-Humanity.

37. Society is that being, at once ideal and real, by which is manifested the link between all human beings, Human Solidarity, Humanity, and which has for types, for causes, and for summaries the man and the woman.

Society is the natural milieu, created by the man and the woman, in the image of the man and the woman, and where must be insured the procreation, the development, and the normal life of man and woman.

38. Man and woman are fellows as human beings.

39. Man and woman are equals as human beings.

40. Man and woman are different as regards the procreation of the species.

41. Man and woman have been created different in order to unite for the procreation of the species.

42. Man and woman unite in the Couple, which completes man and woman and of which they are the two equal faces.

43. Man and woman really manifest themselves and can manifest themselves morally as sexes only by the Couple and in the Couple.

44. The Couple is the most intimate, most profound and most mysterious manifestation of that law which makes fellows objects of one another.

45. The Couple is divine: the Couple is creator.


Love and Marriage.


46. By Love in the state of aspiration, man and woman are lovers [amant et amante].

47. By Love in the state of manifestation, that is by Marriage, man and woman are partners [époux et épouse].

48. Husband and wife are equal in Marriage.

49. The law of Marriage is stable Love.

50. The law of Love is not to love solely, in the loved one, in the husband or wife, the individual being with their gifts and graces;

51. The law of Love is also to love, in the individual being, the species manifested as man or woman, and capable of acquiring all its gifts and all its graces.

52. The law of Love is not disillusionment because of faults and imperfections.

53. The law of Love is constant despite faults and imperfections.

For Perfectibility is the law of every being.

But the cessation of Love, separation and divorce amounts to death before death.

54. Divorce is an exceptional and temporary rule; it is contrary to the Ideal.


The Social State.


Let us associate ourselves according to the laws of the HOLY TRINITY, and we will be happy. With Pythagorus and all the thinkers who have enlightened and guided Humanity, we swear it by Him who has given to our soul the Unity in Triplicity, source of the Eternal Nature.

55. The human being, being triple and one, manifests the trinity of its being in its language, in all its expressions, in all its acts, in all its creations.

56. The Purpose, Duty and Right of every human being are expressed in this first ternary without which human nature is not satisfied, and without which there is no individuality:




corresponding to



57. Right and Duty in the City have for fundamental basis and for dogma this second ternary, which expresses the social life in its very essence:




corresponding to




58. Right and Duty in the City have for expression this third ternary, which determines the condition of human beings in the social state:




corresponding to







59. Property, triple and one, relates predominantly to sensation. As it relates to sensation, Property is the possession and usage of the things necessary to Subsistence.

Property also relates to sentiment; in this context it is the possession and the use of honorific distinctions, that Society must create, and which will be attributed according to the Proposition, the Choice, and the Acclamation of the Citizens.

Finally. Property relates to cognition; in this context it is the possession and use of a Function.




60. The Family corresponds predominantly to sentiment.

The Family is the manifestation of the Couple; it results from Marriage.

61. The Family is triple and one; it has for real cause, however mysterious and hidden, and for end this ternary:




corresponding to




62. The child is in the first place in the father and in the mother, for it is of them and in a certain way it is them;

The child is equally in Society, for it does not come to the world without the protection and support of Society; it is received by Society.

63. The child is not solely a new being, fruit of the love of the father and mother; it is a being which has already lived, and which carries in itself the type of the species Humanity.

64. The right and duty of the father and mother with regard to the child combines with right and duty of Society with regard to that same child.

65. The child is given over to the care of the Family until the age of seven years.

Nonetheless Society intervenes from the more tender years of the child in the care of the Family as a relief, by means of what we can call Nurseries and Classrooms of primary education.

66. The human being as a child is not free in the same way as an adult, for it does not possess the reason and the means to exercise its freedom; the human child is a minor.

67. The human child is destined to enter into Society as a citizen, associate, and functionary: thus, its Instruction, its Education, and its Apprenticeship belong to Society, but take place without destroying its daily relations with the Family.

68. Human beings, at the age determined for majority, are free, for they have the reason and means to exercise their liberty.

The State has used up its right of persuasion and education towards the child; as adults, men come into their own as thinking beings; they are citizens; they enjoy liberty of Conscience and Liberty of the Press.


The City.


69. The City relates primarily to cognition. The city, in this respect, is called the Republic.

70. The City is triple and one; it includes indivisibly


The Citizen—The Commune—The State.


The City is the milieu where Liberty, Fraternity, and Equality jointly manifest themselves.




71. Liberty is principally the right for every human being to live by manifesting itself; the right to act, and the right to develop itself in conformity with its nature and its predominant faculties, a right which, in order to be fully exercised, can never depend on a condition where the individual is subordinated to another individual, or exploited by another individual. Liberty implies directly for each the right to contribute as a Citizen to the creation of the government of the City.




72. Fraternity is the sentiment which cements the Association where human beings are free and equal, by pervading them with their common origin, their Solidarity. Fraternity is the link which unites Liberty, or the right of each, and Equality, or the right of all, and shows their basic identity.




73. Equality is the right that all fellow human beings, sensation—sentiment—cognition, have to be placed in similar conditions; to enjoy the same goods in relation to the needs and the faculties of their being, being in no case obeyed or commanded. Equality is right and justice considered in all.

74. Liberty, Fraternity, and Equality imply one another. Each of them taken separately cannot exist, or can exist only in name or as an aspiration, when the other two are not realized.

75. Liberty, Fraternity, and Equality organized render all human beings Citizens—Associates—Functionaries.


Of Citizens and of the Sovereignty of the People.


76. The Citizens are made up of All, of Some, and of Each.

77. Sovereignty is Power; it resides, in principle, in God, and, after God, in the human spirit, in human reason, and is manifested jointly by Each, Some, and All. It is the light given to Each, to Some, and to All; it is the cause which render possible the People and legitimates the government of People, by making Each—Some—All work together.

Each—Some—All indivisibly united by number, by love and by science, this is the true Sovereign after God.

78. Sovereignty is inalienable, enduring, nontransferable.

79. It is in essence and in virtuality the Legislator.

80. It is at each moment in the latent state in Each, in the state of expansion in Some, and in the state of manifestation in All.

The term Each represents the Individual, the term Some forms the Commune, the term All makes place for the State.

81. Each—Some—All creates Association.


Of Association.


82. Every human being, in order to be free, fraternal, and equal, must be associated with other human beings according to their predominant faculties and their legitimate attractions.

Every human being is a member of a Family, every human being has Friends, every human being is part of a Workshop, and enters in that to the title of Associate.

83. The basis of Association in the Workshop is Partnership;

The basis of Partnership, is Friendship;

The basis of Friendship, is the Triad.




84. The Triad is natural or organic.

85. The natural Triad is the friendship of three human beings, each representing in predominance one of the three faces or faculties of our being: one representing Sensation, the other Sentiment, and the third Cognition.

For although every human is in all its acts sensation—sentiment—cognition indivisibly united, each of us has, because of our natural graces, because of our innate qualities, that is apart from every act and by predisposition, a predominance of Cognition, Sentiment, or Sensation.

Just so again, according to the nature of the act accomplished, Sensation, Sentiment or Cognition predominates.

But men, taking their predominance for their entire being, exaggerate that predominance to the point of becoming monsters of Cognition, monsters of Sentiment, and monsters of Sensation.

The natural Triad, realizing through three human beings the union of three different predominances, is the true moral law; it corrects the tendencies of each towards the excessive development of one of their faculties, it leads each towards the unity of their being, towards their true personality.

86. The Triad is the true law of Attraction realizing itself by Friendship.

For, between human beings, Attraction is nothing but the law that makes each fellow the object of their fellows.

Thus the Triad is, after Marriage, a second social and organizational manifestation of the law of communion and of the spiritual nutrition of Humanity.


Of the organic Triad.


87. The Organic Triad is the association of three human beings, each representing in predominance one of the three faces of our nature, one Sensation, the other Sentiment, the third Knowledge, in some social function.

88. The Trinity being in our being, being that which constitutes our being, is reflected in all our works, and shows itself in all our works.

Every Function is triple and one, three functions in one; every function has three faces, and corresponds by one to Sensation, by the other to Sentiment, by the third to Knowledge.

Every human being, applying itself in isolation to a Function, tends to exert in that triune Function only the aspect which corresponds to their predominant faculties.

Thus, the social element of labor is not an individual, but three individuals, or a Triad.

89. Every function, whether industrial, artistic or scientific, gives rise to three Workshops.

The function and the instruments of the Function are handed over in their unity to the Triads associated for the Function.


Of the Directing Triad.


90. Each of the three Workshops to which the Function gives rise is represented with regard to demand by a Directing Triad.

91. The Directing Triad is formed by election.

92. Each of the three Workshops to which the Function gives rise elects one of its members to take part in the Directing Triad.

The principle of the Triad destroys despotism. Despotism has come because the Function or labor has always been abandoned to One alone; because One commands, as the One, One or Several individuals; because One possesses, as the One, the instruments of the Function.

Despotism results, by a direct path, from the One commanding One or Several.

Despotism results, by an indirect path, from the One possessing, as the One, the instruments of the Function.

Thus, the opposite of the One, or of despotism, is the Triad.


Of the Functionaries.


93. The human being sensation—sentiment—cognition manifesting itself by labor created Industry, Art, and Science.

94. Industry is the expression of human life where Sensation predominates and the application of the forces of the man to the earth, and to the different objects that nature provides for the production of the things necessary for the satisfaction of our needs, and for the development of our faculties.

95. Art is the expression of human life where Sentiment predominates. The harmonies of language, of sound, of light, or color, of forms, and of movement, are revealed to us by Art, and serve to manifest by Symbols the passions and the desires of the human soul in its ardent aspiration towards the Beautiful.

96. Science is the manifestation of human life where Cognition predominates. It is the successive revelation that Life makes in us of the UNIVERSAL LIFE. It is by this that we become conscious of the existence of the individual beings which surround us, and at the same time of the general laws to which they are subject. Finally, it is by this that we can raise ourselves more and more towards the Supreme Cause. Through Science we put ourselves in indirect relations with Bodies and with Forces, and in direct relations with Causes.

By the trinity Industry—Art—Science, Humanity appropriates each day a greater number of Bodies to its use, harnesses each day more Forces, and raises itself each day more towards God, accomplishing its sublime function in the general life, which is to continue in the perfecting work of Nature.

97. Every Industry, every Art, every Science divides naturally into three Functions, and appoints Functionaries in Triads.

98. The Triad is the principle of Organization in Industry, in Art, and in Science.

99. In Society, the Functionaries are distinguished naturally in three equal orders: the Industrial workers, the Artists, and the Scientists.


The Commune and the State.


100. The Commune is the association of Some occupying a designated portion of territory and forming a Workshop of Industry, a Workshop of Art, a Workshop of Science, linked and administered by a triple Power emanating from the direct election of the associates.

101. The State is the expression and the guarantee of the rights of All. It links together all the Communes, and manifests the Unity of Industry, Art, and Science.

102. The same principle which organizes the Workshop organizes the Commune and the State; that principle is the Triad or Ternary Order.

103. In its administration, the Commune is triple and one.

104. The administration of the Commune includes indivisibly:

1° An Administrative Triad;

2° One or more Educational Triads, charged with the Education of the men and women in the state of natural minority and given by age; a Judicial Triad charged with the repression of offences, that is to say with the Education of men and women in the state of legal minor and resulting from acts described as offences. The judicial function implies three functions: that of public prosecutor, that of public defender or Minister of Grace, and that of judge of fact or Jury. The Triads of the Judicial-Educational order function under the inspiration of the Judicial-Educational Power, conforming to the Program that determines it, and in conformity with the general laws;

3° A Legislative Triad:

These Triads are named directly by the Citizens gathered in the Commune;

4° A Management (Gérance) formed by a Triad and made up of: a member elected by the Administrative Functionaries, another member elected by the Judicial-Educational Functionaries, a third member elected by the Legislative Functionaries. That Triad establishes the unity between the three orders of functions, and has the care of relations external to the Commune.

105. The State, like the Sovereignty from which it emanates, is triple and one. It includes indivisibly three orders of functions or Powers:

1° The Administrative and Executive Power, that is the Powers charged with the satisfaction of the general consumption by making the demand to Labor, to facilitate and extend production, and to ensure that between all the Communes a just division is made of the industrial, artistic and scientific products. It expresses the Law;

2° The Judicial-Educational Power, that is the Power charged with preparing the material of Education and with overseeing the application of the laws;

3° The Legislative Power, that is the Power charged with making the general laws.

106. Each of these Powers rise directly from the Election of all the Citizens.

107. A the head of the State, and achieving the Unity of the three Powers appointed by the People, is a Management composed jointly of three members: one appointed by the Functionaries of the administrative order, another by the Functionaries of the judicial-educational order, and the third by Functionaries of the legislative. That Triad has the care of relations external to the State.

108. The function of the administrator, of the judge-educator, or of the legislator is triple and one, like every other function, for every act of general administration, every law, and every principle of justice and of education must satisfy the three points of view of Industry, Art, and Science.

Each Citizen or Sovereign thus must not appoint to the Powers of the State a single Administrator, a single Judge-Educator, and a single Legislator, but three Functionaries of each order; each Citizen or Sovereign must appoint for each order of function a representative taken from among Industrials, another representative taken from among the Artists, and a third representative taken from among the Scientists.


Of Election.


109. Election is in essence triple and one. It has three terms: 1° the Proposal, 2° the Choice, 3° the Acclamation. The proposal emanates most particularly from Each and from the vote of Each, the Choice results from the inspiration and initiative given by Some, and the Acclamation results from the acceptance, tacit or expressed, of All.




110. Education is triple and one: it includes Gymnastics, Education properly speaking, and Instruction.

111. Gymnastics embraces all the hygienic concerns; it is the art of developing the senses and the bodily faculties by means of a graduated series of exercises.

It gives rise to the Workshop of the Gymnasts.

112. Education is the art of nourishing and developing the moral faculties with the aid of teachings drawn from the past and present life of Humanity. It distinguishes the various predominances of the Students, and favors the formation of Natural Triads.

It gives rise to the Workshop of the Educators.

113. Instruction is the art of nourishing and developing the intellectual faculties by means of Science.

It gives rise to the Workshop of the Professors.

114. The Judicial-Educational Power of the Commune organizes Education, and presides over the composition of the Workshop of Education.

115. The Workshop of Education is made up of three Workshops united in Function:

1° The Workshop of the Triads of Gymnasts;

2° The Workshop of the Triads of Educators;

3° The Workshop of the Triads of Professors.

The Triads of Gymnasts elect a Gymnast.

The Triads of Educators elect an Educator.

The Triads of Professors elect a Professor.

The Directing Triad of the Workshop of Education is thus composed of:

a professor—an educator—a gymnast

jointly united in the unity of Function.


Of Apprenticeship.


116. Apprenticeship is the initiation in a Function, whether industrial, artistic, or scientific.

117. The Workshop of Education directs Apprenticeship.




Religion and Philosophy do not differ in essence. Philosophy is a Religion which seeks itself, Religion is a Philosophy which knows itself.

118. Worship is the manifestation of Religion, 1° by Institutions, 2° by the social life itself, 3° by a collection of symbolic Ceremonies and religious Celebrations. Worship, in this regard, is in the first place Prayer and Communion, or the act of fraternization.

119. Birth, the Natural Triad, Initiation (at a certain age), Marriage, Communion, and Death, give rise to the Symbols or Ceremonies of Worship.

120. The adepts of the DOCTRINE OF HUMANITY will celebrate Sunday as the day consecrated to God, as the day dedicated to rest, to Liberty, to Fraternity, to Equality; as the social day par excellence.

Sunday, as we establish it, aims to bring to mind the Equality in each of us, in our entire being, by putting us in possession of the unity of our being.

Sunday, as we establish it, aims to bring to mind the Equality, as it must exist between us, in our individual relations, in our relations with one another, by showing us its efficacy for our own happiness, so that, by the very fact of the trinity of our being, we are not only fellows, and endowed with the same nature, but united with one another in a single life.

Sunday, as we establish it, aims to bring to mind the Equality, such as it must exist among us, in our social relations, in our relations as Citizens and Functionaries, by showing us that Equality in realized form, and by serving to realize it in us with more perfection from week to week.

121. Sunday is the day of the repast in common, symbol of the Communion. Communion is the realization of human Fraternity, of the unity of the human spirit, and of the reciprocal solidarity of human beings. The Repast in common is the sign that expresses and symbolizes the idea that humans all live the same life, that the thoughts of one nourish the others, that thus the life of the human race consists in a true assimilation that new generations make of the products of the previous generations, nourishing themselves so to speak, from the life and substance of their fathers, and that it is the general law of manifestation and of nutrition of the life within all creatures. The Repast in common expresses and symbolizes the previous ideas generalized in that: God, the Universal Being is the scene of that manifestation of the life within all creatures; it is through him that they live and are nourished, since he intervenes in all by three titles, as creator, as animator, and as the link which unites them and brings them together.

122. Sunday is the day of preaching and of Prayer in common.











123. Human Subsistence is infinite by virtue of the infinite fecundity of all species, and by the gift given to human beings of being able to profit from all of Nature.

124. Human Subsistence being, by essence, infinite, it is scarce only because of the errors of the human species.

125. Consumption is the goal of Production, but it is also its cause.

126. Nature has established a CIRCULUS between Production and Consumption.

Human beings take hold of plants and animals, of all the products of life that the earth gives them; they eat them, and their life is extended. But what they cannot assimilate passes from their beings, into the state of detritus, or excrement; this detritus, this excrement is an animal product, a compound of forces and juices, which, returning to the earth, and combining with it, renders it fertile and productive.

That which takes place for the human being is a law which applies to all animals. In addition, the corpses of these animals, the detritus from all the plants, the cast-offs of all beings, which have lived, serve, have served and will serve, by combining and mixing with the earth, to render it fertile and productive:

Science has established that human excrement is twelve times more useful for the production of grain than that of other animals. It has proven that each human being produces the manure necessary to the reproduction of their subsistence.

127. Man is thus at once Producer and Consumer.




128. By Nature every human has a right to live; if they consume, they also produce.

Thus the child that does not yet labor, the old person who no longer labors, the infirm person who cannot labor, have, in addition to human rights, a natural right to invoke, and that right is based on the divine law that we call Circulus.

129. The human being who refused to work would still have a right to live, taking shelter under the law of the Circulus; only they would no longer be Citizen, Associate or Functionary.




130. The law by virtue of which God has established for every being, at the heart of nature, a CIRCULUS between Consumption and the Reproduction of its Subsistence, is equally true for social labor. No act takes place in the human Workshop which is not at once Consumption and Production.

By the light of that law, aided by it, association satisfies the needs of the individual, directs collective labor, and remunerates the Functionaries.


Of the Needs of the Individual.


131. All the needs of the Individual come down to these: To Be Born, to Reproduce, to Preserve Oneself.

Birth gives rise to Society, to the Homeland,

Reproduction gives rise to the Family,

Self-preservation gives rise to Property.


Of the Preservation of Existence.




To preserve itself despite the destructive action that Nature exerts on it at every instant by the alternation of heat and cold, by the air, by light and electricity, by hunger and thirst—in short, in order to defend his body from the continual invasion of all foreign bodies, and in order to escape the incessant absorption which all the environments that it traverses tend to work on it—the man has need to house, feed and clothe himself.

132. All the needs to which, for the Individual, the necessity of his preservation gives place relate to these three things: Habitation, Food, Clothing.




133. Human activity, exercised with an eye to the satisfaction of these needs, created Labor and the relations that it gives rise to and teaches.

134. Human Association, profiting from the infinite fecundity of Nature, profiting also from the labor accomplished by all of Humanity from its first ages until our own, seconded by the efforts of all its members, gives to each individual, by participation in the common inheritance and by labor, the means to procure Habitation, Food, and Clothing.




135. Each human has a right to Habitation, Food, and Clothing.

The right of Each to these things is limited by the right of All.

136. Each and All have the right to participate in all the advantages of Society.

137. Each and All have the right and the duty to exercise a Function in Society.

138. Each and All have a right to Property.

139. Property is the natural right of each to use a determined thing, in the fashion that the Law determines.


Of Labor.


140. Labor is a manifestation of the life of each human being, either by Industry, by Art, or by Science.

Society, the collective milieu is the field and center of labor of each person; it is from it that each human borrows the science that they apply, the instruments that they employ, the matter that they transform; it is really from it that they hold all the means of producing. In every act of production the entire social milieu intervenes as keeper of the instruments of labor and of raw materials, as source of inspiration, as divider.

141. Every act of production, in human Society, is the result of a communion similar to that universal communion which is the general law of manifestation and of nutrition of the life at the heart all creatures.

142. The Labor imposed by Nature, demanded by Society, instructs and nourishes Society, materially, morally and spiritually.

143. The Labor demanded by Society of the Industrial Worker, the Artist, and the Scientist, creates Association among the Industrial Workers, among the Artists, and among the Scientists.

It creates at the same time the Association between the Industrial worker, the Artist, and the Scientist.

144. Labor has three terms:

1° A term which relates to the Past, and which represents science, tradition, the successive inventions of human thought relative to the product demanded; which also represents the matter transformed by a previous labor with that product in mind. Thus far this term, expression of an eminently social power, because it manifests the universal association of men in time and space, has been improperly named Capital (Caput, tête, head). The social force that it expresses has been put in the hands of some individuals as a result of conquest and the feudal system, and it has been maintained there in the absence of right founded on Equality, Fraternity and Liberty. It would be better expressed by the general terms: Instruments of labor, Manure, Science;

2° A term which relates to the future, and which represents the living force of the man applied to the different objects of Nature; that term has been called Labor in an abstract fashion; it would be better named Laborer;

3° A term which relates to the present and which represents materials on which Man, the Laborer, exerts himself with the aid of instruments, Land or some Material that labor must transform.

Thus, the formula of Labor is: Science, Manure, Instruments, relating to the past, Laborer, relating to the future, Land, Materials, relating to the present.

This formula is that of all human labor; it embraces Industry in all its aspect of agriculture and industry properly speaking, Art in all its aspects poetry, music and the plastic arts, and Science in all its aspects as philosophy, historical and political science, or science of organization, and natural sciences, including mathematics, chemistry, physics, and all the sciences of observation and reasoning.

145. The conception and the very idea of Labor in relation to the Society gives rise to that Ternary which is all of Economic Science:




corresponding to


Cognition — Sentiment — Sensation.


Of Distribution.


Labor, in these aspects of Science, Manure, Instruments of labor, products created, ready to enter into new relations, and ready to create new products, gives place to a branch of the administration which, under the name of credit and commerce, has been left to individuals. What the State has known of that part of administration has been limited to taxation, and social administration has had for object up to now only to determine the tax base and use of the tax.

The three ideas represented by the words credit, commerce, and tax, come together in the true economic science. The word Distribution takes in all three.

146. Distribution is the act by which the administrative Power presides over the general division of products and instruments of labor, whether industrial, artistic or scientific.


Of Production.


147. Production, accomplished at the request of the Administration, must satisfy present needs and foresee the needs to come; it must, in every case, be maintained by Labor at the level of Consumption.


Of Consumption.


148. Consumption is at once the expression of needs and the demand for products.


Of the Remuneration of the Functionaries.


149. The formula of remuneration is triple and one:

To each according to their Capacity.

To each according to their Labor.

To each according to their Needs.

150. Capacity is remunerated by Function, and imposes the Function.

151. Labor accomplished is remunerated by Leisure.

152. Needs are satisfied by Products, either natural or industrial, artistic or scientific.

153. It is thus that by distinguishing what must be distinguished, namely 1° our needs properly speaking, 2° our need of leisure or of liberty, and 3° our need of Function or of legitimate influence on our fellows, and by satisfying these three demands of our nature as they must be satisfied, by paying them in an individual currency, so to speak, responding to the demands, and not as one does it today confusedly and without distinction from what one calls money and property, we come to put an end to an infinite error: infiniti erroris finis et terminus ultimus.









Translation by Shawn P. Wilbur, Fall, 2009.



Desages, Luc, 1820-1903 and Desmoulins, Auguste, 1823-1892, “The Doctrine of Humanity--Aphorisms,” The Libertarian Labyrinth, accessed February 22, 2019,

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