The Principles of Numinous Law

Numinous law is the basis of the legal code of an ethical, numinous, community: that is, the basis of "law and order" in a society founded upon the ethics of The Numinous Way.

I: The first, and fundamental, principle of Numinous law is that there are only honourable and dishonourable deeds, with dishonourable deeds being the concern of Numinous laws. That is, there is no concept of "crime" as "crime" is now understood in modern societies.  Numinous laws thus define what is dis-honourable.

II: The second principle of Numinous law is that the penalties for committing dishonourable deeds should be compensatory, rather than punitive, and involve: (1) exile of those found guilty of dishonourable conduct; (2) compensation by the guilty person, in goods, or money, of the victim of the dishonourable deed, or of the family/relatives of the victim. If the person found guilty of having committed a dishonourable deed or deeds has little or no goods or money then they can give their labour for a specified period.

Imprisonment is reserved for serious deeds of dishonour and should never exceed a period of one year, with all those sentenced to imprisonment being given the option of exile instead. As an alternative to all the foregoing, a penalty of work serving the community for a fixed period of not more than six months is permissible.

Only these types of penalties are permitted by Numinous law, for only these are honourable, fair and just. The death penalty is expressly forbidden.

Exile can be of two kinds: Greater Exile, where the person is exiled from the homeland for the rest of their life; or Lesser Exile, where the person is exiled for a period of three years.

Someone who has been exiled is an outlaw: outside the protection of Numinous law.

III: The third principle of Numinous law is that an accusation of dishonourable conduct - that is, of someone doing a deed which has been defined, in law, as dishonourable - must be made: (a) in person by either the victim of such a deed, or by the family/relatives of the victim; and (b) in public, in front of several witnesses.

That is, Numinous law is concerned only with dishonourable actions between individuals: with deeds which are actually done in real life and which affect an individual or individuals. Thus, there is not and can never be, in Numinous law:  (a) any prosecution of a person by some "Institution" or Government or officials of these; (b) any prosecution for something which has not been committed; (c) any such thing as a dishonourable deed committed against some "Institution" or some "Government": that is, no such thing as a "crime" against the State. For a deed to be a "crime" according to Numinous law, there must have been a deed or deeds done by one or more individuals against one or more other, named, and known, individuals, with the deed or deeds being recognized as dishonourable in nature.

There is thus no such thing as "conspiracy" in Numinous law, just as individuals cannot be prosecuted for "intending" to commit a dishonourable deed.

What must be proved in a Numinous Court of Law is that the accused did do the dishonourable deed they are accused of. An intention to commit such a deed is not and never can be contrary to Numinous law.

IV:  The fourth principle of Numinous law is that every individual has the right to defend themselves, their family, and those to whom that individual has sworn, before witnesses, an Oath of Loyalty, and the right to use, as last and honourable resort, lethal force in such defence.

Should an individual or individual be harmed or injured in such defence, then it is the right, of that individual to seek redress from the individual who has harmed or injured them. Should an individual be killed in such defence, then the family/relatives of that individual have the right of redress.

This redress consists either of accusing, in public, the person of dishonourable conduct, or of a direct challenge to a duel or a trial by combat.

V: The fifth principle of Numinous law is that disputes between individual - involving injury or any other matter - may be settled through either a duel between the individuals involved, or by a trial by combat between those involved.

That is, it is a fundamental right, and duty, of the individual to be responsible for themselves, their family, and those given an Oath of Loyalty, and to seek, if necessary, personal vengeance and satisfaction, through a duel or trial by combat. Justice, for Numinous law, is a matter of honour and of being seen to be fair.

What matters, what is important, for Numinous law is the personal honour of the individual and the right, and duty, of the individual to defend their own honour.  This right and duty cannot be taken away from the individual by, for example, the State, for that would be contrary to Numinous law, a denial of the freedom of the individual based as this freedom is on personal honour, and personal responsibility to defend that honour.

Numinous law thus accepts that a duel, or a trial by combat, is an honourable way of settling disputes between individuals.

In the matter of duels and trial by combat, Numinous law specifies that there must be an independent referee, Umpire or judge, at least two independent witnesses, and that such duels and trials be conducted in an honourable way according to custom. Numinous law affirms that should any person be injured or killed in such a duel or trial by combat then that is their own responsibility. That is, Numinous law considers such duels and such combats - when performed honourably according to custom - as honourable deeds.

VI: The sixth principle of Numinous law is that anyone publicly accused of a dishonourable deed or deeds has a right to either challenge the person making the accusation to a duel, or of accepting a trial in a Numinous Court of Law.

Should the person so making the accusation agree to a duel, then the matter is considered settled, according to Numinous law, by the outcome of that duel provided it is done in an honourable way.

VII: The seventh principle of Numinous law is that an individual accused of any dishonourable deed or deeds, who has accepted a trial in a Numinous Court of Law, can either elect to have their case heard, in public, with witnesses called, or elect for a public trial by combat between the accused and a member or relative of the family of the person who has made the accusation.

It is up to the Court to ensure that such a combat is fair: that is, that the two combatants are fairly evenly matched in skill and physical strength.

If the accused accepts a public Court, then they are bound by the verdict of that Court. That is, there is no appeal. Thus, if the accused is found guilty, then they must accept exile, or pay whatever compensation is demanded by the Court. According to Numinous law, failure to pay such compensation within the time specified by the Court means the immediate exile of the person, with the type of exile being decided by the Court.

VIII: The eighth principle of Numinous law is that a public trial involves an accusation made by one individual against another individual before a Jury of twelve honourable individuals, with their being a presiding Judge. It is the duty of the Jury to judge the case on the evidence of independent witnesses, and after hearing arguments from the accused and the person who has brought the charge. The accusation must be supported by the evidence of independent witnesses: if there is no such evidence, the case is dismissed. It is the duty of the Judge to pass sentence according to the principles of Numinous law.

Thus, according to Numinous law, the people who should prosecute a case, and who should defend an accusation, are either the two individuals involved - accused and accuser - or members/relatives of their families. That is, someone accused of some dishonourable deed or deeds must either defend themselves in such a Court, or have a member/relative of their family do this. The same applies for the person bringing or making the accusation: they should if possible present their own case, or have a member/relative of their family present it.

It is also the duty of the person who believes a dishonourable deed has been done to them - or the members/relatives of their family - to find and accuse the person responsible, if such a person has not been seen and identified during the deed, and to find any witnesses to the deed.

 Numinous law thus does not accept the absolute necessity of "professional lawyers" or "solicitors", regarding such a necessity as dishonourable and a negation of the liberty of the individual. All the proceedings should be understandable by ordinary people, and involve only the direct evidence of witnesses, whether or not a deed is dishonourable according to Numinous law, and whether or not such a deed has been done by the accused.

An independent witness is defined in  Numinous law as a person who is not a member or relative of either the person accused or of the injured party, and who is not bound by an Oath of Allegiance to either the accused or the injured party, or to any member of their families.

Both the Judge and Jurors at such a trial must also be independent by the same criteria, with both Judge and Jurors expected to have proved and be known for their honour by their deeds, their work, their service to the community.

IX: The ninth principle of Numinous law is that if a person who has suffered a dishonourable deed according to Numinous law has no living family  members or relatives, then it is the duty of an honourable person in the community to act on their behalf, and so find and accuse the person they believe is responsible if that honourable person sees such a deed committed, or sincerely and justly believes that a dishonourable deed has been committed.

The person who so begins to act is bound by the rules of Numinous law: that is, they must present the case themselves, and can be challenged to a duel or a trial by combat by the person they accuse.

This honourable duty of acting on behalf of a person who has no living family members or relatives, or whose family members or relatives cannot be traced, or who for some honourable reason such as infirmity or sickness, cannot act on their behalf, may be undertaken by a public official appointed to undertake such duties, with this official being publicly known for their honour by their deeds, their work, their service to and on behalf of the community.

The Foundation of Freedom

Numinous law is the foundation, the basis, for genuine freedom, and a society based upon Numinous law is a just and free society. Any other type of society or government is a denial of liberty, because Numinous law expresses the principle of personal honour, recognizes and accepts the importance of the sovereignty of the individual, and manifests the truth that true justice is only and ever the justice of empathic, honourable, individuals.

That is, Numinous law is built upon the foundation of the importance of honourable individual character. All other types of law, and all other types of society based upon such laws, deny or restrict or destroy individual character, as they deny, restrict or take away the personal honour of the individual and their family and relatives.

The most fundamental belief behind Numinous law is that the sovereignty of the individual is inviolate. The fundamental principle of all other types of law is that sovereignty belongs to the Government, the State or some "Monarch" or tyrant. Numinous law makes the person responsible for themselves and their kin whereas other types of law - and the societies based on such laws - take responsibility away from the individual.

The aim of a modern Numinous movement would be to ethically establish a new culture - new communities - where individuals can live according to the ethics and customs of The Numinous Way - and where Numinous law is the basis for the "law and order" of such communities.