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Diné bibeenahazʼáaniiEdit

The Navajo Fundamental Diné bibeenahazʼáanii (1 N.N.C. §§ 201-206)—Nov. 8, 2002 Council Resolution (CN-69-02).

For commentary on the Council’s efforts to incorporate Diné bibeenahazʼáanii in its written statutes in English, please read Diné bibeenahazʼáanii: Codifying Indigenous Consuetudinary Law in the 21st Century, INDEX § 1. Diné bibeehazʼáanii bitse siléí—Declaration of the Foundation of Diné Law § 2. Diné bibeenahazʼáanii § 3. Diyin bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii—Diné Traditional Law § 4. Diyin Dineʼé bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii—Diné Customary Law § 5. Nahasdzáán dóó Yádiłhił bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii—Diné Natural Law § 6. Diyin Nohookáá Diné bibeenahazʼáanii—Diné Common Law Title 1 General Provisions Chapter 1. The Foundation of the Diné, Diné Law and Diné Government § 1. Diné bibeehazʼáanii Bitse Siléí—Declaration of the Foundation of Diné Law (1 N.N.C. § 201) We, the Diné, the people of the Great Covenant, are the image of our ancestors and we are created in connection with all creation. Diné bibeehaz’áanii Bitsi Siléí Diyin Dineʼé Sin dóó sodizin Bee Nahasdzáán dóó yádiłhił nitsáhákees yił hadeidiilaa, Tó dóó dził diyinii nahatʼá yił hadediilaa, Niłchʼi dóó nanseʼ ałtaasʼéí iiná yił hadediilaa, Koʼ, adinídíín dóó ntłʼiz náádahaniihjįʼ sihasin yił hadeidiilaa. Díí tsʼídá aláají nihi beehazʼáanii bitse siléí niháʼ ályaa. Nitsáhákees éí nahatʼá bitsé silá. Iiná éí sihasin bitsé silá. Hanihiʼ diilyaadi díí nihiihdaahyaʼ dóó bee hadíníitʼé. Binahjiʼ nihééhoʼdílzingíí éíí: Nihízhiʼ, Ádóoneʼé niidlíinii, Nihinéíʼ, Nihee óʼool ííł, Nihi chahaʼoh, Nihi kékʼehashchíín. Díí bikʼehgo Diyin Nohookáá Diné nihiʼdooʼniid. Kodóó dahʼadíníísá dóó dahʼadiidéél. Áko dííshjįįgi nitsáhákees, nahatʼá, iiná, saad, oodląʼ, Dóó beehazʼáanii ałʼąą ádaatʼéego nihitah nihwiileeh, Ndi nihi beehazʼáanii bitsé siléí nhá ndaahyaʼáá tʼahdii doo łahgo ánééhda. Éí biniinaa tʼáá nanihiʼdeelyáhąą doo níłchʼi divin hinááh nihiihdaahyaʼąą geʼát éigo, Tʼáá Diné niidlįįgo náásgóó ahoolʼá. The Holy People ordained, Through songs and prayers, That Earth and universe embody thinking, Water and the sacred mountains embody planning, Air and variegated vegetation embody life, Fire, light, and offering sites of variegated sacred stones embody wisdom. These are the fundamental tenets established. Thinking is the foundation of planning. Life is the foundation of wisdom. Upon our creation, these were instituted within us and we embody them. Accordingly, we are identified by: Our Diné name, Our clan, Our language, Our life way, Our shadow, Our footprints. Therefore, we were called the Holy Earth-Surface-People. From here growth began and the journey proceeds. Different thinking, planning, life ways, languages, beliefs, and laws appear among us, But the fundamental laws placed by the Holy People remain unchanged. Hence, as we were created with living soul, we remain Diné forever. § 2. Diné bibeenahazʼáanii (1 N.N.C. § 202) The Diné bibeenahazʼáanii embodies Diyin bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii (Traditional Law), Diyin Dineʼé bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii (Customary Law), Nahasdzáán dóó Yádiłhił bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii (Natural Law), and Diyin Nohookáá Diné bibeenahazʼáanii (Common Law). These laws provide sanctuary for the Diné life and culture, our relationship with the world beyond the sacred mountains, and the balance we maintain with the natural world. These laws provide the foundation of Diné bi nahatʼá (providing leadership through developing and administering policies and plans utilizing these laws as guiding principles) and Diné sovereignty. In turn, Diné binahatʼa is the foundation of the Diné binaatʼá (government). Hence, the respect for, honor, belief and trust in the Diné bibeenahazʼáanii preserves, protects and enhances the following inherent rights, beliefs, practices and freedoms: A. The individual rights and freedoms of each Diné (from the beautiful child who will be born tonight to the dear elder who will pass on tonight from old age) as they are declared in these laws; and B. The collective rights and freedoms of the Diyin Nohookáá Diné as a distinct people as they are declared in these laws; and C. The fundamental values and principles of Diné Life Way as declared in these laws; and D. Self-governance; and E. A government structure consisting of Hózhóójí Nahatʼá (Executive Branch), Naatʼájí Nahatʼá (Legislative Branch), Hashkééjí Nahatʼá (Judicial Branch), and the Naayeeʼjí Nahatʼá (National Security Branch); and F. That the practice of Diné bi nahatʼa through the values and life way embodied in the Diné bibeenahazʼáanii provides the foundation for all laws proclaimed by the Navajo Nation government and the faithful adherence to Diné Bi Nahatʼá will ensure the survival of the Navajo Nation; and G. That Diné bibeenahazʼáanii provides for the future development and growth of a thriving Navajo Nation regardless of the many different thinking, planning, life ways, languages, beliefs, and laws that may appear within the Nation; and H. The right and freedom of the Diné to be educated as to Diné bibeenahazʼáanii; and I. That Diné bibeenahazʼáanii provides for the establishment of governmental relationships and agreements with other nations; that the Diné shall respect and honor such relationships and agreements and that the Diné can expect reciprocal respect and honor from such other nations. § 3. Diyin bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii—Diné Traditional Law (1 N.N.C. § 203) The Diné Traditional Law declares and teaches that: A. It is the right and freedom of the Diné to choose leaders of their choice; leaders who will communicate with the people for guidance; leaders who will use their experience and wisdom to always act in the best interest of the people; and leaders who will also ensure the rights and freedoms of generations yet to come; and B. All leaders chosen by the Diné are to carry out their duties and responsibilities in a moral and legal manner in representing the people and the government; the people’s trust and confidence in the leaders and the continued status as a leader are dependent upon adherence to the values and principles of Dine bibeenahazʼáanii; and C. The leader(s) of the Executive Branch (Aląąjįʼ Hózhóójí Nahatʼá) shall represent the Navajo Nation to other peoples and nations and implement the policies and laws enacted by the legislative branch; and D. The leader(s) of the Legislative Branch (Aląąjįʼ Naatʼájí Nahatʼá and Aląąjįʼ Naatʼájí Ndaanitʼáii or Naatʼaanii) shall enact policies and laws to address the immediate and future needs; and E. The leader(s) of the Judicial Branch (Aląąjįʼ Hashkééjí Nahatʼá) shall uphold the values and principles of Diné bibeenahazʼáanii in the practice of peace making, obedience, discipline, punishment, interpreting laws and rendering decisions and judgments; and F. The leader(s) of the Security Branch (Aląąjįʼ Naayeeʼjí Nahatʼá) are entrusted with the safety of the people and the government. To this end, the leader(s) shall maintain and enforce security systems and operations for the Navajo Nation at all time and shall provide services and guidance in the event of severe national crisis or military-type disasters; and G. Our elders and our medicine people, the teachers of traditional laws, values and principles must always be respected and honored if the people and the government are to persevere and thrive; the teachings of the elders and medicine people, their participation in government and their contributions of the traditional values and principles of Diné life way will ensure growth of the Navajo Nation; and from time to time, the elders and medicine people must be requested to provide the cleansing, protection prayers, and blessing ceremonies necessary for securing healthy leadership and the operation of the government in harmony with traditional law; and H. The various spiritual healings through worship, song and prayer (Nahaghá) must be preserved, taught, maintained and performed in their original forms; and I. The Diné and the government must always respect the spiritual beliefs and practices of any person and allow for the input and contribution of any religion to the maintenance of a moral society and government; and J. The Diné and the government can incorporate those practices, principles and values of other societies that are not contrary to the values and principles of Diné bibeenahazʼaanii and that they deem is in their best interest and is necessary to provide for the physical and mental well-being for every individual. § 4. Diyin Dineʼé bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii—Diné Customary Law (1 N.N.C. § 204) The Diné Customary Law declares and teaches that: A. It is the right and freedom of the people that there always be holistic education of the values and principles underlying the purpose of living in balance with all creation, walking in beauty and making a living; and B. It is the right and freedom of the people that the sacred system of kʼé, based on the four clans of Kiiyaaʼáanii, Todíchʼiínii, Honagháahnii and Hashtłʼishnii and all the descendent clans be taught and preserved; and C. It is the right and freedom of the people that the sacred Diné language (nihiineiʼ) be taught and preserved; and D. It is the right and freedom of the people that the sacred bonding in marriage and the unity of each family be protected; and E. It is the right and freedom of the people that every child and every elder be respected, honored and protected with a healthy physical and mental environment, free from all abuse. F. It is the right and freedom of the people that our children are provided with education to absorb wisdom, self-knowledge, and knowledge to empower them to make a living and participate in the growth of the Navajo Nation. § 5. Nahasdzáán dóó Yádiłhił bitsʼą́ą́dę́ę́ʼ beenahazʼáanii—Diné Natural Law (1 N.N.C. § 205) Diné Natural Law declares and teaches that: A. The four sacred elements of life, air, light/fire, water and earth/pollen in all their forms must be respected, honored and protected for they sustain life; and B. The six sacred mountains, Sisnajini, Tsoodził, Dookʼoʼooslííd, Dibé Nitsaa, Dził Naʼoodiłii, Dził Chʼoolʼíʼí, and all the attendant mountains must be respected, honored and protected for they, as leaders, are the foundation of the Navajo Nation; and C. All creation, from Mother Earth and Father Sky to the animals, those who live in water, those who fly and plant life have their own laws, and have rights and freedom to exist; and D. The Diné have a sacred obligation and duty to respect, preserve and protect all that was provided for we were designated as the steward of these relatives through our use of the sacred gifts of language and thinking; and E. Mother Earth and Father Sky is part of us as the Diné and the Diné is part of Mother Earth and Father Sky; The Diné must treat this sacred bond with love and respect without exerting dominance for we do not own our mother or father. F. The rights and freedoms of the people to the use of the sacred elements of life as mentioned above and to the use of the land, natural resources, sacred sites and other living beings must be accomplished through the proper protocol of respect and offering and these practices must be protected and preserved for they are the foundation of our spiritual ceremonies and the Diné life way; and G. It is the duty and responsibility of the Diné to protect and preserve the beauty of the natural world for future generations. § 6. Diyin Nohookáá Diné bibeenahazʼáanii—Diné Common Law (1 N.N.C. § 206) The Diné Common Law declares and teaches that: A. The knowledge, wisdom, and practices of the people must be developed and exercised in harmony with the values and principles of the Diné bibeenahazʼaanii; and in turn, the written laws of the Navajo Nation must be developed and interpreted in harmony with Diné Common Law; and B. The values and principles of Diné Common Law must be recognized, respected, honored and trusted as the motivational guidance for the people and their leaders in order to cope with the complexities of the changing world, the need to compete in business to make a living and the establishment and maintenance of decent standards of living; and C. The values and principles of Diné Common Law must be used to harness and utilize the unlimited interwoven Diné knowledge, with our absorbed knowledge from other peoples. This knowledge is our tool in exercising and exhibiting self-assurance and self-reliance in enjoying the beauty of happiness and harmony.

Chief ManuelitoEdit

Shikʼéí, shidineʼé, ałtah háásiiłǫ́ǫ́...
háadida léiʼ...
nihizaad, nihisodizin, ádóoneʼé niidlínígíí dóó nihiʼéʼélʼį́...
nihił chʼaawóleʼ shaʼáłchíní...
hosidoolį́įjįʼ...
sidoołdeeʼjįʼ.

Hastiin Chʼil Haajiní

My relatives, my people, diverse people...
some time in the future...
our language, our prayers, our clans, and our culture...
do not misplace that, my children...
until death...
wherever you travel to.
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