On March 6 in Vilnus, Lithuania a Vilnius Declaration On Dealing with Consequences of Collective Trauma was signed. It was signed by the participants of a two day conference entitled “Dealing with the Trauma of an Undigested Past” who have gathered in Vilnius on the eve of the 30th Anniversary of Restoration of Lithuania’s Independence.
The declaration among others concludes that collective traumas are crucial and impactful human experiences that significantly affect domestic politics and international relations. Traumas influence how societies view themselves and how they form domestic and international policies.
It emphasizes that the consequences of collective traumas have varying impacts on different societies. The question is not only how to avoid traumas in the future but also how to deal with the traumatizing past in a such a way that it no longer dominates the present and negatively influences the future development of society.
It encourages governments and international organizations to fully recognize and research what happened exactly, who was involved and in what way. Support the work of scholars, non-profit organizations, truth commissions and war crime tribunals in presenting the concrete and researched evidence about the terrible crimes. Provide both moral and material support to the ongoing historical investigation into totalitarian regimes, as only by acting in a concerted manner can we more effectively counter disinformation campaigns and attempts to manipulate historical facts and the creation of new falsified narratives. Make sure that all corresponding historical documents (i.e. archives) are accessible for research purposes.
And it addresses mental health professionals to seek a role in developing strategies to break the trans-generational transmissions of trauma and their malignant consequences. Besides being healers of traumatized individuals, look for ways to help administer preventive medicine to societies recovering from collective traumas.
See the full text of the declaration here: Deklaracija ENG
This conference brought together a unique collective of recognized experts from Europe, Asia, and America.
See the full programme here:Programa ENG_compressed Conference Dealing with the Trauma of an undigested past
Source and image: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Lithuania