Tawamiciya: The Concept of Belonging to Oneself in the Sioux Language

Email Print
FacebookTwitterShare

It is not chance that Lakota declared its sovereignty, because the Lakota have an even stronger concept than tribal sovereignty, namely personal sovereignty. I have been told by the author of “Atlantis“, Robert Klassen, that “tawamiciya” is a word in the Sioux language, meaning to belong to oneself, free of other men. There is a comment on Russell Means and the Lakota within the first link above that says the same.

Murray Rothbard famously identified a similar concept (100% ownership of one’s body) as axiomatic and developed from it his system of libertarian law. Frank van Dun, in an important article based on his earlier work in 1983, rigorously developed the logic of law in general. He employs the definition that P is a free person means that P belongs to himself and only to himself. In van Dun’s development, a sovereign person by definition belongs to no person but himself, implying that a person is free if and only if he is sovereign.

I should add that further thought and argument is needed to say what a person is and what a natural person is. Is the State a person? A natural or an artificial person? Is a human being a person, a real person, a natural person? The possible position of nonhuman persons such as gods also has to be addressed. One has to answer these questions in order to choose between the construction of law as a legal positivistic system, which makes the State sovereign and the source of rights, and that natural law system which vests rights naturally in the natural person of the human being.

6:28 am on October 24, 2013