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UPF Statement on Human Rights and Responsibilities

The Universal Peace Federation calls awareness to the oneness of the global human family as a foundation for securing human rights, calling for greater spiritual awareness and a collective will to ensure the well being of all people.

While noting the great achievements in the quest to secure the rights of all human beings, and affirming the special importance of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, much work remains to be done if we are to build a world of lasting peace wherein all people live together in mutual respect, harmony, cooperation, and the well-being of everyone.

Religion is profoundly relevant to the effort to secure human rights. Religions, after all, teach that we share a common origin, the source of our sacred value. Religions teach the value of each human being and the need to serve and love others. Violations of human rights are rooted in moral failures and moral ignorance related to spiritual poverty. With increasing spiritual awareness, there emerges a great collective will to ensure the well being of all people. As such, we should advance the values of all the world’s great religions, showing their emphasis on universal values. An interreligious advisory committee on human rights and human responsibilities could be of great assistance to the UN Human Rights Council

The family is the primary school of ethics and should serve as the school where we learn to love, respect, and serve others. By strengthening marriage and family, we can educate our children to respect all people, thereby establishing a culture of respect for human rights rooted in the family.

Our educational curricula should teach about both human rights and human responsibilities. This can be done through a character education or moral education curriculum. Men and women who are taught to fulfill their moral obligations and responsibilities in their families and among friends and associates will respect and live for the greater good and fulfillment of others.

Human rights are secured not merely through laws, backed by the power of government enforcement, but by a rising awareness of our universal solidarity, that we are one human family, brothers and sisters who share a common spiritual and moral heritage. We are one family under God.

Human rights and freedom are inextricably linked; however, freedom without responsibility based on moral principles encourages selfishness and disregard for the rights of others.

The cause of justice and human rights can only be achieved through broad and sustained global cooperation in which every country takes into account not only the needs of its own citizens but also the needs of all humanity.

For additional resources on human rights, click here.