Sôgmô to Host Banquet for 9 Years of Sandus

The Honourable Sôgmô Gaius Soergel Publicola will host a banquet this weekend on 26 May 2018 to celebrate the ninth anniversary of the creation of Sandus. The holiday will be celebrated by the Sôgmô and a handful of close friends from þess university. Due to the size of the Sôgmô’s official residence, the dinner will only include seven guests. The five-course dinner will be served by a combination of services à la française and à la russe.

The dinner has been called a suovetaurilia—one of the most important Roman religious sacrifices where a sheep, pig, and bull would be sacrificed. Though the dinner will not include the killing of any animals, it will include lamb, pork, and beef as meats. The rite is described by Cato the Elder in his De Agri Cultura, or On Agriculture.

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The menu for the dinner released by the Office of the Sôgmô.

The five courses of the dinner also combine formal French, Italian, and British dining. The first course is an Italian pasta course where það will serve spaghetti carbonara. The second, another entrée, is when Caesar salad will be served, after which an apéritif of Old Pulteney scotch whisky will be served. The third course will be the main course of souvlaki, rice pilaf, and ratatolha (ratatouille). As a part of the fourth course, which will be a cheese course complete with local bread, a digestif of limoncello—produced in the sagamorial palace—will be served. Finally, the fifth course will be blueberry vatrushki, or Russian blueberry pastries. Wines and beers will be served throughout the dinner.

Some musical entertainment will be provided by one of the participants, who will also play the Sandum national anthem. Other music will be provided from the Sôgmô’s Day of Creation and Fête nationale music playlist.

To turn the participants’ minds toward compassion and suffering, the Sôgmô will offer a moderate amount of food and drink during each meal. The Sôgmô has also confirmed that það will wear the robes of state, a symbol of the philosophic nature of the State of Sandus and an visual sign of steadfast humility and altruism. The dinner will also include a speech by the Sandum leader and a small ceremony of offering food according to Cato’s prescriptions in the De Agri Cultura.

The ninth anniversary of the creation of Sandus is a numerically significant event in Sandus, because the number three occurs throughout Sandus and is seen as a particularly auspicious number. Since the ninth anniversary is a cube of the number three (3³), this anniversary is held to be significant and auspicious according to Sandum numerology.

von Friedeck enfeoffed as Baronet of Eliot

The Sôgmô has enfeoffed Sandus’s first baronetcy in the Sandum Table of Noble Ranks to Adam Camillus von Friedeck, who will now be known ceremonially as Baronet of Eliot. He was awarded the noble rank of baronet in accordance with constitutional precedence, as von Friedeck is the chairman of the Commission for the Command Economy (CCE). Von Friedeck’s baronetcy is the first time a baronetcy has been bestowed by the Sôgmô since the Sandum system of nobility was established on 28 April 2017.

Read the letters patent enfeoffing the baronetcy here.

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Coat of arms of Adam Camillus von Friedeck, Baronet of Eliot

Though the baronetcy is the State of Sandus’s first, it will not follow to any heirs or successors of King Adam of Überstadt, as it is not an “entitled fiefdom” in Sandus. The baronetcy is also awarded with three conditions: that Adam be a hospes to the Sôgmô and other Sandum citizens, provide aid during times of distress, and remain a citizen of the State of Sandus.

As a baronetcy, King Adam has the ability to govern Eliot as an autonomous fiefdom within the State of Sandus, in accordance with Sandum law.

Adam Camillus von Friedeck has long served as Secretary of the Citizens’ Party of Sandus, affording him the ability to also receive a barony. He has previously received the distinction of gentleman because of his status as a worker in the State of Sandus. He is also an Elder in the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus and is a Member of the Honourable Order of Athena Pronoea.

Habemus Consortem: We have a consort!

The Office of the Sôgmô has announced that the Honourable Sôgmô Gaius Soergel Publicola has a new Sanôba Consort, Oliver Armstrong. Both partners are long-time friends for nearly eight years already. They met through mutual micronational connections and he recently visited það in Quercus Candida, the capital of Sandus, last month, the palace confirmed.

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the new Sandum Sanôba Consort Oliver Armstrong

The new consort is a university student studying topics ranging from religious studies to photography and journalism. His interests include plants, art, and lobsters.

Oliver Armstrong will complete and return an application for Sandum citizenship later this evening. This marks the first time a consort does not automatically become a Sandum citizen because of new laws and conventions since the last royal partner became consort.

According to Sandum tradition, the office and status of Sanôba Consort exists as long as the Sôgmô is in a committed relationship, regardless of marriage. While it is not a constitutional office, the office has traditionally existed since the early days of Sandus and even predates the State of Sandus, but it has remained vacant for the past two years now. Some consorts have taken an active role in Sandus in the past. On Sandum Independence Day in 2015, the last Sanôba Consort attended a state visit between the Sôgmô and former Kumanoese leader Hatsu Ryuho.

Under the sagamorial decree on the Sandum nobility, the current consort is entitled to the status and noble rank of a baron. It is unclear whether or not His Lordship will be granted a barony.

Sôgmô establishes Laureate cultural program

The Honourable Sôgmô has established a program to recognise and celebrate individuals and their cultural work relevant to the State of Sandus. Since 2010, Sandus has had one “national musician,” Enya, but this new project creates a new democratic process in Sandus to recognise even more significant people for their relevant cultural work. Recipients of this program will receive their own title (e.g., “national musician,” “national activist,” etc.) and will be entitled to receive the circle of the honour.

Nominate important individuals here.

Laureate Circle Template

The circle of the laureate honour is comprised of Sandum national colours and the top prizewinning colours, silver and gold.

The motto of the honour is taken from the opening line of Hesiod’s Works and Days, which says “May you come sing, Muses from Pieria, to give honour” (“Μοῦσαι Πιερίηθεν ἀοιδῇσιν κλείουσαι δεῦτε”). The title on the bottom of the circle says “To the Crowned of the Homeland.”

The program operates by accepting nominations from other Sandum citizens. Once a nomination has been received, it heads to the Council where it can be debated. After it has been approved, the Sôgmô may then bestow the honour in þess role as fount of honour in Sandus.

The nomination form asks for a variety of information, such as the nominee’s background and the medium of their cultural work. This broad question is intended to allow for a breadth of recipients, from “national musician” or “national artist” to “national activist” or “national theologian,” and so on.

Moreover, the form asks about the social and historical context of the nominee: was the nominee emblematic of “high” or “folk/pop” culture, and in whose context are these distinctions drawn? For example, one might compare our national musician Enya, who began as a popular culture artist in the New Age movement beginning in the 1980s but whose work has transcended class distinctions to become relatively higher in status. Or, one might use someone like Jean-Baptiste Lully, the Sôgmô’s favourite baroque composer, who was and is of a “high culture” context. The distinction for drawing these two questions is to ensure relative social equity in Sandus between dominant “Western” and unprivileged cultural figures, such as between Lully to Nigerian environmental activist Ken Saro-Wiwa.

Finally, citizens are asked to compare nominee’s work, background, and impact to the Sandum Philosophy. This open-ended question seeks to justify the individual as a national cultural figure and their reception as a “laureate” figure in Sandus by considering what is “Sandum” about individuals who are otherwise not Sandum citizens, politically or culturally.

Equinox Report: For a Spring of Improved Infrastructure

The winter brought with it more than just the cold this year. Sandum citizens, ever diligent in their multifaceted responsibilities, have been toiling away in their private lives, while the State of Sandus has been working away on the behalf of all of us. At the end of December, Sandus celebrated its traditional cultural events—from the Solstice to Christmas. And let us not mention that the past season has seen more than three New Year celebrations!

January brought with it her annual peace and concord—so that Sandus could labour away for the People’s weal. Sandus joined the GUM as an observer, while we set out to make plans for the momentous occasion of the tenth anniversary of Sandus in May 2019. What is more, the Sôgmô proposed to the council a new law governing the infrastructure related to citizenship and to immigration in Sandus—and this bill became the very first law passed by Sandus in the Council. In March, the first applicant under this new system became a Sandum citizen, raising our population to 13. February likewise saw the momentous occasions of the familiar festivals of the Parentalia, the Feralia, and the Caristia, the first occasion of Sandus celebrating African Diaspora Day, and the seventh anniversary of the Secession.

The past season has seen the increased institutionalisation of Sandum government with members of the Republic taking a diligent part in governance, in pursuance of the spirit of the Plan for the Major Societal Shift. Today, Sandum citizens take an increasingly active and diligent role in their government, and Party members are working carefully yet diligently to complete the Party’s platform. Moreover, Sandum faithful are today diligent in the fulfilment of the free and social endeavour of the State of Sandus—imbuing our State with compassion and diligence in accordance with our duties. With this experience of the budding of Sandum power, we ought to fertilise the ground of Sandum infrastructure and further develop the Sandum nation by all possible means.

We shall diligently cultivate the infrastructure of the State!
Nous cultiverons diligemment l’infrastructure de l’État !
Colemus diligente structuram Civitatis!

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A Record of Hours in Winter 2018: Sandum Charity Taxes
The past few years have seen multiple records made on behalf of the Sandum institution of charity taxes, the requirement all citizens have toward donating money or time for compassionate activity toward others–or philanthropy. Derived from the Greek word which means, literally, “love of mankind,” this Sandum institution represents the literal fulfilment of our vows and duty as Sandum citizens—which we undertook the moment we became citizens.

Today marks the third season Sandus has donated over $1,000 USD to charity. Last winter, Sandus donated only $395.60 to charity, while this winter we have donated $1,095.18 to charity and philanthropic causes ranging from religious to environmental, humanitarian, and cultural nonprofit organisations—as well as smaller, individual events.

In addition, the past season has seen a remarkable event for volunteer work in Sandus. One of our citizens, Aaron von Friedeck, has dedicated the last three months to his religious calling, as he will do for the next two years. Aaron’s dedication to his convictions and to the betterment—spiritual and material—of other people recall Sandus’s own philosophical underpinnings. Our philosophy is predicated on the belief that all people in this world suffer. This precept of the Sandum Philosophy is not restricted to any one ideology, people, or religion, but is instead a maxim all people of the world can and should hold on to. It is not a nihilistic maxim, where all our actions are futile, but rather one where we, as one Sovereign People and as individuals with free will, can shape the conditions of our individual lives and of the society and culture around us.

Aaron’s charity does not stand alone, however. All Sandum citizens, from the oldest citizen to the newest, take part in it. This season saw Sandum citizens volunteering 794 hours of their own time to philanthropic causes, ranging from animal welfare organisations and political organisations to museums and shelters. This is the single most amount of hours volunteered in Sandum history, and is greater than the sum of all hours volunteered in the last two years combined. Even without von Friedeck’s mission, this season would have been the second greatest number of hours volunteered on behalf of our love for humanity.

Significant Improvements made to segments of Sandum Infrastructure
As mentioned in the introduction to this report, this past season saw the introduction of a new Sandum law to revamp the processes by which individuals become Sandum citizens. This law did away with the forms that once existed, creating new ones which would weed out applications contrary to Sandum laws. These forms have already had a great effect in significantly reducing the number of applications that must be denied. Moreover, this new law also adopted new mechanisms in Sandus to speed the process along and to ensure that Sandus was bringing in only the most committed, diligent, and intellectual citizens to our national philosophy.

But this law is only one of several actions to revamp Sandum infrastructure. We should also add that efforts are being made to improve this website, develop its pages, edit its information (if it is out of date), and to further clearly explain information related to our country. The website is not the only thing, however, which has been affected by these movements. Sandum media, too, has taken on a new aesthetic form and music popularly used in Sandus has been shared for important holidays. A greater effort has been made to translate Sandum media into all three official languages, in whole or in part, while more media has also been written in languages other than English.

The Council has also been the recipient of the State’s recent drive, and this will likely continue in the coming sessions. The Facilitator is taking over more administrative functions from the Sôgmô, while also encouraging new additions to the Council’s administrative rules—such as his idea of adding a quorum rule to motions passed by the Council.

Sandum government is also developing with more officials underneath the three leading offices of the Sandum Republic. The Sôgmô reorganised, in this season, the chargée d’affaires from the Office of the Sôgmô to the Ministry of Diplomatic Affairs, while also answering directly to the monarch themself.

Like the Sandum functionary, the State’s economic apparatus has also seen an increased interest. The newest Sandum citizen has actively taken an interest in Sandum economic affairs, while also showing an interest in Sandus’s political system. But other citizens, too, are interested in cooperatives. The Collegium itself, Sandus’s oldest cooperative tasked with religious and philosophical affairs, has demonstrated a renewed impetus for new work toward the Sandum Church as well as the newly established Sandum Sangha. Sandus is following the model of countless Socialist countries which have come before us, but is guided by our own philosophy—the bulwark of the Sandum State.

In addition to work done, there is work to do. In the new season, we plan to adopt a rigorous media campaign, revamp Sandus’s propaganda production, and further develop Sandus’s economic potential. It is important here to note that, as it is not guided by capitalist goals of maximising profit and squeezing labour out of workers, Sandus is primarily interested in providing these material and cultural benefits for the integration, development, and advancement of the State of Sandus and the common good. Last of all, the Sôgmô is also planning a new Sagamorial Consideration where það will explain the planning and theory behind an idea of a Sandum judicial or philosophical branch.

Ten Years of Sandus

Let the Planning begin! Preparing for the 10th Anniversary
Sandus’s tenth anniversary of existence will be on 26 May 2019, and the Sôgmô has invited all Sandum citizens, those both now and once upon a time, to come visit Quercus Candida and to celebrate Sandus’s first decade of existence. There is also an open invitation for interested friends and allies of the State of Sandus.

Planning will clarify the schedule and the best location for visitors to stay, but dates have already been chosen: 24 – 26 May 2019. Events will include dinners, discussions, tea, and a tour of the new Sandum capital.

Tax Titles: Hatsu Ryuho and Aaron von Friedeck
By a June 2012 decree, the State of Sandus bestows an extra name (agnomen) or title on individuals who have demonstrated a passion for charity and philanthropy. Only once before has a Sandum citizen taken an extra name, Adam Camillus von Friedeck. (Sisenna Melville was also offered one but declined.) Today, the Sôgmô offers two Sandum citizens the distinction of a tax title, one the offer of an agnomen and the other the offer of the title “the Caring.” This notice will be updated if they accept the honour.

Sôgmô adopts new Regal State Robes

The Honourable Sôgmô Gaius Soergel Publicola has received new robes of office for the first time since the creation of Sandus. The old, more simple sheet of fabric will be retired and in its place the Sôgmô will wear new, specifically-purposed robes.

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Since June 2009, the Sôgmô has always worn blue robes to important ceremonial and state occasions. As Grand Lama of the Grand Lamate of Sandefreistikhan, as Sandus was known at the time, það took up the robes early on in þess reign which lasted from May to July 2009, before becoming the Speaker of the People’s State of Sandus (the leader of that regime). Over more than five regime changes from 2009 to 2011, það donned the robes during important state and ceremonial occasions. Finally, on 13 April 2011, the former robes became the regalia for the newly-formed State of Sandus.

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The Sôgmô with the Sanôba Father at þess university graduation.

In 2017, new robes were added to the official regalia of the State of Sandus, which now include the Sôgmô’s graduation robes.

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A portrait of the Sôgmô wearing the new robes.

Today, the day after Losar or the Tibetan New Year and during the Chötrul Düchen holiday, the Sôgmô has formally retired the old robes and has announced that new official Regal State Robes will be used in their stead. The new robes are a darker blue than the previous robes, recalling the blue of the State Flag, and reflect the solemn role and purpose of the Sôgmô’s office established since before the current constitution.

The tradition of the robes dates to Sandefreistikhan, in Sandus’s early history, when the Lama of Sandus was expected to reflect the moral outlook and solemn duty of members of the Buddhist sangha. This tradition and this idea that the leader of the nation is a morally upright and intellectual scholar, like many Buddhist monks, has continued to the present day with the Sôgmô.

The Regal State Robes are meditations robes designed for primarily Pure Land Buddhist practitioners, and were chosen both for their colour and their thrift. The robes are incredibly utilitarian because they are tied and have pockets—and sleeves, unlike the previous robes. The colour of the robes, moreover, is both specific to Sandus and is not a colour used by any other Buddhist tradition. The Sôgmô was careful not to choose a colour which is identified with any particular Buddhist tradition’s robes for ordained people, since það is not an ordained person in any sangha.

Það will wear these robes in July when they attend the 2018 MicroFrancophonie Summit.

Sacer Flamen establishes Sandum Sangha

Sacerdotium

The Sôgmô in þess capacity as Sacer Flamen of the Collegium Sacerdotum of the State of Sandus has established a new sodality for Sandum Buddhists on the last Amitabha Day of the Tibetan year 2144, or the year of the Fire Rooster. The new sodality is mandated with organising discussions of the Dharma, meditation events, and pan-Buddhist ceremonies.

Though the State of Sandus is made up of a minority of Sandum Buddhists, the country’s Buddhist tradition is seen as one of the most significant traditions in Sandus, as well as the country’s Socialist traditions. The Sôgmô, who is a Tibetan Buddhist, formed the country in May 2009 as a Tibetan Buddhist country under the then-Grand Lamate of Sandefreistikhan. Under the government then, the Grand Lama was intended to dress in state robes which reflected a lay person’s commitment to the Buddha’s teachings of poverty and asceticism. Today, the Sôgmô still…

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