Kartilya ng Katipunan

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The Kartilya ng Katipunan (English: Primer of the Katipunan) served as the guidebook for new members of the organization, which laid out the group's rules and principles. The first edition of the Kartilya was written by Andres Bonifacio, Emilio Jacinto will later pen a revised Decalogue.

The teachings of the Katipunan[edit]

The order for those who want to join the association shall have the full understanding and knowledge of its guiding principles and main teachings so that they may perform their duties wholeheartedly. The Association pursues the most worthy and momentous object of uniting the hearts and the mind of the Tagalog by means of inviolable oath in order that the union to be strong enough to tear aside the thick veil that obscure thoughts and find the true path of reason and enlightenment. The foremost rules is the true love of native land and genuine compassion for others, for everyone shall be treated equal and true brethren

As soon as anybody enters the association, he shall perforce renounce disorderly habits and shall submit to the authority of the sacred commands of the Katipunan. All acts contrary to noble and clean living are repugnant here, and hence the life of anyone who wants to affiliate with this Association will be submitted to a searching investigation.

If the applicant merely wishes to know the secrets of the Association, or to seek personal gratification, or to know who is here in order to sell them for a handful of silver, he cannot proceed, for the many who are watching him will already know his intentions, and will immediately have recourse to an effective remedy, such as befits traitors. Only actions are demanded and esteemed; hence anybody who is not willing to act should not enter, no matter how good a speaker he might be.

The duties to be performed by the members of this association are exceedingly hard, especially if one remembers that there can be no dereliction or wilful evasion of duty without the exaction of a terrible punishment.

If an applicant merely desires financial support relief or wants to lead a life of bodily comfort and ease, he had better not proceed, for he will encounter weighty tasks, like the protection of the oppressed and the relentless fight against all that is evil. In this way, his fate will be a vexatious life. Nobody is unaware of the misfortune that threatens the Filipinos who contemplate these things that are sacred and the sufferings they are made to endure by the reign of cruelty, injustice and evil.

The punctual payment of dues is required: one peso upon entry and then twelve and a half centimos each month. The custodian of the funds will periodically render an account to the members, and each member has a right to examine the accounts, should he so wish. The funds cannot be expended without the consent of the majority.

The aforementioned must be thought over and deliberated upon calmly, as it cannot be accomplished or endured by anyone who has no love for his native land and no genuine desire to promote progress. for the upliftment of mind and virtue the foregoing shall be peruse and practice vigorously:[1]

  1. A life that is not dedicated to a noble and divine cause is like a tree without a shade, if not a poisonous weed.
  2. A deed that is motivated by self-interest or self-pity and done without sincerity lacks nobility.
  3. True piety is the act of being charitable, loving one's fellowmen, and being judicious in behavior, speech and deed.
  4. We are all equal, regardless of the color of their skin; While one could have more education, wealth or beauty than the other, none of them can overpass one's identity.
  5. A person with a noble character values honor above self-interest, while a person with a base character values self-interest above honor.
  6. To a man with a sense of shame, his word is inviolate.
  7. Do not waste your time; lost wealth can be retrieved, but time lost is lost forever.
  8. Defend the oppressed and fight the oppressor.
  9. A wise man is someone who is careful in all that he says; learn to keep the things that need to be kept secret.
  10. In the thorny path of life, the man leads the way and his wife and children follow; If the leader goes the way of evil, so do the followers.
  11. Never regard a woman as an object for you to trifle with; rather you should consider her as a partner and a friend in times of need; Give proper considerations to a woman's frailty and never forget that your own mother, who brought you forth and nurtured you from infancy, is herself such a person.
  12. Do not do to the wife, children and brothers and sisters of others what you do not want others to do to your wife, children and brothers and sisters.
  13. A (person's) worth is not measured by his/her status in life, neither by the length of his nose nor the fairness of skin, and certainly not by whether he is a priest claiming to be God's deputy. Even if he is a tribesman/tribeswoman from the hills and speaks only his/her own tongue, a (person) is honorable if he/she possesses a good character, is true to his/her word, has fine perceptions and is loyal to his/her native land.
  14. When these teachings shall have been propagated and the glorious sun of freedom begins to shine on these poor islands to enlighten a united race and people, then all the loves lost, all the struggle and sacrifices shall not have been in vain.

Decalogue of the Katipunan[edit]

Originally titled Katungkulang Gagawin ng mga Z. Ll. B. (Duties of the Sons of the People) It was never published because Bonifacio believed that Jacinto's Kartilya was superior to what he had made.

  1. Love God with all your heart.
  2. Bear always in mind that the love of God is also the love of country, and this, too, is love of one's fellowmen.
  3. Engrave in your heart that the true measure of honor and happiness is to die for the freedom of your country.
  4. All your good wishes will be crowned with success if you have serenity, constancy, reason and faith in all your acts and endeavor.
  5. Guard the mandates and aims of the K.K.K. as you guard your honor.
  6. It is the duty of all to deliver, at the risk of their own lives and wealth, anyone who runs great risks in the performance of his duty.
  7. Our responsibility to ourselves and the performance of our duties will be the example set for our fellowmen to follow.
  8. Insofar as it is within your power, share your means with the poor and the unfortunate.
  9. Diligence in the work that gives sustenance to you is the true basis of love—love for your self, for your wife and children, for your brothers and countrymen.
  10. Punish any scoundrel and traitor and praise all good work. Believe, likewise, that the aims of the K.K.K. are God-given, for the will of the people is also the will of God.

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