Convivialist wishes for 2021

What can convivialists wish for and wish for themselves for 2021? The same things as the largest number of people on this earth:

  • That, very soon, the covid-19 will be nothing more than a bad memory, of course, and that other comparable pandemics will no longer occur.
  • That the peoples of the earth may finally be able to get rid of the many dictators, corrupt, bloodthirsty, or/and buffoons, who hold them under their yoke.
  • That no one will be condemned to misery, oppression, risk of murder, and forced into exile.
  • That the fight against global warming will begin in earnest.
  • etc.

So, how can we move forward in this direction? Nobody really knows. The bet of the convivialists is that nothing will be decisive as long as there is not a great story of hope that can be shared on a global scale. The two Convivialist Manifestos sketch out the lines of this great narrative. In this way, they light up a glimmer of hope. Small, very small, but still a glimmer. It is not a small thing. Where does it stand?

Less than a year after its publication in French (in February 2020 with the publishing house Actes Sud) the Second Convivialist Manifesto has already been translated into German, English, Brazilian and Italian. Translations into Catalan, Spanish and Portuguese are imminent. Translations into Arabic and Japanese are being considered (they would be more than welcome).

Already, in connection with two or three dozen global citizen goodwill networks  (representing millions and millions of people), the convivialists have initiated a project for a world citizen parliament which is intended to embody the moral conscience of humanity and to help raise awareness (Cf. appendix). .

Last but not least, we have laid the foundations of an International Convivialist Association (based in Germany) whose board will be formed by Frank Adloff, Sergio Costa, Elena Pulcini, Catherine André and Geoffrey Pleyers. In the coming months, you will gradually see the international convivialist network grow and multiply the initiatives.

Let us therefore hope that in 2021 an embryo of this world citizen parliament will be born. To this end, it will be precious that each of us, in our relations with our relatives, colleagues and friends, in our writings and conferences, should call ourselves convivialists. Under this sign we will win. Perhaps we will…

Happy New Year 2021!

Alain Caillé


Moral Global Citizen Parliament Project

Humanity is faced with a growing number of problems – health, environmental, economic, social, moral, etc. – and the need to address them. Still, we seem to find it increasingly difficult to analyze and resolve these pressing issues. While there are many reasons for this impotence, it is possible to isolate two main ones:

The first is the rivalry, which is ever stronger today, between states, cultures, religions, etc., which is increasingly difficult to analyze and resolve.

The second, which is closely linked to the first, is that there is no moral authority that is sufficiently legitimate to make a diagnosis that can be shared and propose plausible solutions on a global scale. The UN represents states and can, at best, only organize arbitration between their interests. This is also true of all the international organizations that depend on it, such as UNESCO, WHO, etc., as well as all the major international meetings between heads of state (G7, G20, etc.). The Davos Forum brings together the world’s most powerful and wealthiest people, but it only represents them and only aims to ensure their pre-eminence. The IPCC on the other hand is independent and influential, but it is not in a position to propose the economic, social and political changes implied by its climate diagnoses.

It is therefore imperative and urgent to create a moral body with sufficient legitimacy to speak for and from the point of view of humanity as a whole. It is in this spirit that the grouping of international networks, Multiconvergence, has decided, on the initiative of the Convivialist International, to launch a process of creating a World Citizens’ Parliament.  Multiconvergence, present on all continents, already brings together some fifteen international networks of networks (mobilising millions and millions of people). And many more who will be able to join them very soon.  This is not much compared to the nearly 8 billion people in the world, but it is already significant and a sufficient start to this very urgent task.

How can such a Parliament be constituted?

The following principles (obviously amendable) have been retained.

  • It must be attended by: 1. intellectual personalities, scholars, philosophers, famous writers, etc. 2. religious or similar personalities 3. World citizens from as many countries as possible, members of civic networks belonging to Multiconvergence or to networks that will join the project, designated or chosen by a draw organized by them.
  • This Parliament will be bicameral. It will be composed of: 1°) a Council for the Common Good of Humanity, comprising 5/12 intellectual personalities; 2/12 religious personalities; 5/12 citizens of the world.  It will have a maximum of 120 members. 2° an Assembly of World Citizens, of a maximum of 480 people including, in addition to the members of the council, up to 360 people proposed by the constituent networks of Multiconvergence and other networks of networks wishing to join this project. 
  • For the Council for the Common Good of Humanity, each of the constituent networks makes proposals, some rather for world citizens, others for religious leaders or intellectuals.  Each network will strive for gender parity and a broad representation of countries and continents.
  • For the Assembly of World Citizens, 240 people (120 in addition to the members of the Council of Wise Men) will initially have to be appointed, and here again, no more than that, to leave room for future new members.  Each of the current networks (20) will have the right to appoint 6 people (3 of whom if possible by drawing lots), taking into consideration gender parity and striving for a broad representation of countries and continents, as well as a broad representation of  professions and social positions (farmers, workers and employees, unemployed or homeless, civil servants, artists, entrepreneurs, etc.) .
  • The meetings will be held by videoconference.
  • The current working languages are English, Spanish, French and Portuguese (Brazil). There will be translators in each of these languages.

Purpose, strengths and weaknesses of the Global Citizen Parliament

What would such a parliament work on? What kind of decisions would it take?

It would work on any subject it chose. Both the assembly and the Council for the Common Good of Humanity are separately self-governing. In each of these bodies decisions are taken by simple majority. But to be definitively endorsed, they must be endorsed by the other body.

Decisions are made in the form of a proposal that is as short and concrete as possible.

Of course, they cannot be binding. The weakness of Multiconvergence is that it has no financial, media (and even less police, military or mafia) resources. But this is also its strength. No one can suspect or accuse it of working for this or that power. It is only motivated by a concern for the common good of humanity. Its sole aim is to contribute to the shift in world public opinion by making it aware that we are not condemned to impotence. To this end, all Multiconvergence networks are committed to making the existence and decisions of the moral world citizen Parliament known not only to their own members but to the public opinion of all the countries in which they are established. 

The networks already present in Multiconvergence

  • Agora of the Inhabitants of the Earth (AHT)
  • Articulation for an economy by François and Claire (ABEFC)
  • Earth Charter (CT)
  • Dialogues in Humanity (DeH)
  • World Social Forum on Transforming Economies (WSFET)
  • United Religions Initiative (URI)
  • International Convivialist Association (ICA)
  • Global Ecovillage Network/Global Ecovillage Network (GEN)
  • La Via Campesina
  • Open viral space (VOS)

A few details:

The network Dialogues en humanité (dialoguesenhumanite.org), born in 2002 in Lyon, France, is rooted in 14 countries and envisages the construction of a planetary citizenship.

The Humanist Movement was born in Mendoza, Argentina, in 1969, based on the proposals of Silo (Mario Luis Rodríguez Cobos) who united people around three pillars: the human being as a central value, non-violence and non-discrimination. The movement spread throughout South America and, with the exile of people persecuted by local dictatorships, it now reaches 51 countries.

The International Convivialist Association brings together hundreds of academics, renowned intellectuals and writers. The International Convivialist Association published in February 2020 its Second Convivialist Manifesto. It has now been signed by nearly 300 people from 33 different countries, moving us towards a post-neoliberal world. This second manifesto has already been translated into German, English, Italian and Portuguese (Brazil). It will soon be translated into Catalan, Spanish and Portuguese (Portugal).

The World Ecovillage Network (ecovillage.org) is a growing network of regenerative communities and initiatives, founded in 1995, with consultative status within the UN ECOSOC and UNEP. Composed of five continental networks and reaching 6090 communities in 114 countries, GEN builds bridges between policy makers, governments, NGOs, academics, entrepreneurs, activists, community networks and environmentally conscious individuals around the world to develop strategies for a global transition to resilient communities and cultures.

The Inhabitants of the Earth Agora was created in Verona, Italy, in 2018 to contribute to the process of building humanity beyond state borders. The Sezano Letter launches its foundations and objectives, recently followed by a Manifesto, « From preaching to saving life », and a Declaration defending vaccines and medicines against Covid-19 that are public, free and accessible to all.

The Viral Open Space was created virtually in 2020, already in the framework of COVID19, from Montreal, Quebec. It draws on the experience of the World Social Forums and other spaces for transnational mobilisation and, in a virtual process mode, tries to offer positive citizen responses to the global crisis through events, concerts, courses, etc.

The Movement for an Economy of Francis and Clare was born from the initiative of Pope Francis to invite humanity to a profound transformation of the relationship between human beings and between them and life and nature as a whole. In the encyclical Laudato Sì Francisco introduces the expression « integral ecology » and stresses that there will be no future for life on the planet without a radical transformation of human relations in the economic and environmental field.

La Via Campesina (The Peasant’s Way » in Spanish) is an international movement that coordinates organisations of small and medium farmers, agricultural workers, rural farms, and indigenous communities in Asia, the Americas, Europe and Africa. The network was founded in 1993. In 2017, La Via Campesina had 182 organisations in 81 countries and represented more than 200 million peasants worldwide. The movement is organised in 9 regions.

P.S. An alliance is envisaged between Multiconvergence and other international networks which, at the initiative of GTA (Global Tapestry of Initiatives) are also starting to group together in the form of an archipelago. In addition to GTA, these are the World Social Forum, Global Dialogue for Systemic Change, Global Working Group Beyond Development, Grassroots to Global Citizens’ Assembly, Global Green New Deal, Progressive International.

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