The constitution of the WSA

WORLD SUBUD ASSOCIATION BYLAWS, updated 2018: English, French, Spanish, Indonesian, Russian

We, the undersigned, having been duly authorized by the Delegates of the Eighth Subud World Congress have agreed to establish this Constitution of the World Subud Association to manage the necessities and requirements of the membership of Subud in accordance with the guidance received by Bapak Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo, the founder of our Association and expressed in his words as follows:

The name Subud is the abbreviation of the words: Susila Budhi Dharma.
Susila means: the character of a true human being in accordance with the Will of the One Almighty God.
Budhi means: the highest power that exists within man.
Dharma means: the reality of the inner-feeling which submits to the Will of Almighty God with patience, trust and sincerity.

We have made this the name of the Association of our spiritual brotherhood as a symbol, indicating that we may truly become human beings who have the qualities of Susila, Budhi and Dharma in conformity with that which we experience each time we receive and practice the latihan kejiwaan.

From the very beginning when the latihan kejiwaan first comes to us what happens is that, after we have inwardly surrendered with sincerity to the Greatness of Almighty God, our heart and mind, which are usually filled with imaginings of all kinds and with thinking on various problems, spontaneously cease to act, and at the same moment our entire inner- feeling vibrates. This vibration of the inner-feeling then manifests itself in the movements and energy which we call the latihan kejiwaan.

Although in this state we experience that our imagination and thoughts cease to act, the inner-feeling experiences calm and awareness, so that it can at all times follow the course of the movements and energy that lead and guide us towards our worship of God.

As a result of that which we experience in the latihan kejiwaan, we are convinced that we worship only the One Almighty God, that it is only He Who is able to lead, guide and bring us to His presence, and that only He can improve and elevate our inner-feeling and soul in accordance with his Will.

Such is the latihan kejiwaan which we have received and practice. The basis, therefore, of this latihan kejiwaan is in fact our worship of God, so that through His leadership and guidance we may be directed towards goodness of character and nobility of soul in accordance with His Will.
Since the latihan kejiwaan exists and comes to us by the Grace of God, and may in fact be received and followed by people of various nations and religions, we can but submit to His Will the matter of its spreading over the whole world.

However, as human beings who live in this world, we need food and clothing, and we also need to take care of ourselves so that we may live on Earth in safety and in peace. Therefore, in addition to our worship of God, it is also necessary for us to form an organization within the framework of the laws and regulations to which we are subject.

For this purpose, therefore, on behalf of the above-mentioned Delegates, we do ordain and establish this Constitution for the World Subud Association in order to form a complete organization.

Signed by at least one member of each delegation from the following countries or groups of countries in the order of signing:
United Kingdom, Indonesia, India, Canada, Netherlands, United States of America, Mexico, France, Ireland, Malaysia, Thailand, Iberia (Portugal and Spain), Costa Rica, Colombia, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Greece, Italy, Brazil, South Africa, Venezuela, Scandinavia (Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark), Germany F.R., New Zealand, Austria, Algeria, Poland, Chile, Surinam, Zaire, Cyprus/Turkey, Japan, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Vietnam, Paraguay, Peru, Argentina, Switzerland, Australia, and Nigeria.


1. To facilitate the worship of Almighty God through the Latihan Kejiwaan of Subud and to provide for the other needs of the Subud membership.
2. To preserve the practice of the Latihan Kejiwaan so that it will remain available to people everywhere in the form in which it was originally practiced under the guidance of Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo.
3. To protect the good reputation of Subud.
4. To encourage peace, harmony and understanding between peoples regardless of their ethnic origin or religion.
5. To provide educational and other facilities for the development of the full potential of human beings.
6. To relieve poverty and deprivation.
7. To encourage the development of a healthy and harmonious inner and outer environment for the well-being of mankind.
8. To encourage cultural activities and the values which enliven and enrich the human spirit.
9. To encourage the entrepreneurial spirit which enables people to express their true talents and develop the capacity to improve the quality of their lives.
10. To make available information concerning the Latihan Kejiwaan of Subud.

Subud is not a religion but can be complementary to religion. There is no theology or doctrine in Subud.

The Association shall not promote or engage in political activities.

The members of the World Subud Association, in all their consultative and deliberative procedures shall be guided by democratic principles and shall seek consensus in decision making through guidance received in the Latihan Kejiwaan.

Affiliates: Autonomous Subud organizations granted affiliate membership in the Association (8.1)
Association: World Subud Association international association of Subud national organizations. (2.1)
Chief Officer: Head of an organization
Congress: Plenary assembly or a set of continual plenary assemblies of the Association (3.1)
Council: World Subud Council (5.1)
Deputy Chairperson: WSA Officer who assists the Chairperson and assumes his duties in his absence.
International Subud Committee: Executive committee, employees and their associated volunteers of the Association (7.1)
ISC: International Subud Committee (7.1)
ISC Chairperson: Chief executive officer of the Association (7.2)
Members: Subud national organizations which are members of the Association (2.2)
Member Delegation: The group of up to four delegates representing the Member in Congress. (3.10)
Participant: Person accorded the temporary right to participate, but not vote, in meetings of a body by the body holding the meetings (10.1)
Presiding Officer: Person chairing a meeting
Regular Congress: Regularly occurring Congress at which WSA Chairperson is chosen (3.2)
WSA: World Subud Association (2.1)
WSA Chairperson: Chairperson of the Association (2.5)
World Subud Council: Council of the Association composed of the International Helpers, the Zone Councils speaking through their Zonal Representative, and the Affiliate heads (5.1)
Zone: Group of Members determined by Congress and based on geographic closeness and linguistic affinity (4.1)
Zonal Council: Council of the Member Delegations of a Zone (4.2)
Zonal Representative: Representative on the Council from a Zone (4.4)

1.1 Minimum Essentials: Because other forms of legislation are available to the Association through which to make decisions and because By-Laws are designed to take care of the worst conceivable situations, nothing should be included in the By-laws which does not have to be there and nothing should be left out of the By-laws which is required to define fully the organization and to deal with the worst conceivable situations.
1.2 Maximum Autonomy: Unless specifically limited or excepted, individuals and bodies referred to in the By-laws may act within their own jurisdictions as they see fit.
1.3 Tradition: Tradition is recognized as playing a role parallel to defined structure in the Associations development.
1.4 Temporality: Organizations as such are a temporal matter.

2.1 Name: The name of the international association of Subud national organizations is the World Subud Association to be referred to in these By-laws as the Association or the WSA.
2.2 Members: The members of the Association are the Subud national organizations to be referred to in these By-laws as the Members.
2.3 Membership: The Members are:
(a) those national organizations, registered at the Eighth World Subud Congress, which have had their Member Delegations ratify the Constitution and By-laws or;
(b) those national organizations not registered at the Eighth World Subud Congress but accepted by Congress which ratify the Constitution and By-laws and;
(c) those national organizations which have not withdrawn voluntarily or which have not been expelled.
2.4 Voluntary Cessation of Membership: Members once having ratified the Constitution and By-laws of the Association, can cease to be Members voluntarily only by a decision of their body of supreme authority.
2.5 The WSA Chairperson: The chief officer of the Association is the Association Chairperson to be referred to in these By-laws as the WSA Chairperson.
2.6 The Deputy Chairperson: Council may appoint a deputy to the Chairperson, to be referred to in these By-laws as the Deputy Chairperson, who shall assist the Chairperson and assume his or her duties in his absence.
2.7 Ratification: Once ratified by a Member, the Constitution and By-laws are binding upon the Member.
2.8 Decision Making: After deliberation by the Member Delegations, decisions are made by consensus.
2.9 Membership Fee: The minimum membership fee shall be one United States dollar per year.

3.1 Definition: The World Subud Association Congress of all the Member Delegations is referred to in these By-laws as Congress. Congress means either a plenary meeting of the Association or plenary meetings of the Association held continually during one time period.
3.2 Regular Congress: Congresses held regularly are referred to in these By-laws as Regular Congresses.
3.4 The Year of Regular Congresses: Before the end of each Regular Congress, Congress designates the calendar year, four to six years hence, of the next Regular Congress.
3.5 Convening Congress: A majority of the Zone Representatives or 25% of the WSA member countries can convene Congress and a special meeting of the WSA. Congress may take place inside or outside the District of Columbia.
3.6 Notification: Due notice of the convening of a Regular Congress is made to the Members not later than six months prior to the first day of Congress.
3.7 Notification: Due notice of the convening of a Congress, other than a Regular Congress, normally is made to the Members not later than two months prior to the first day of such a Congress.
3.8 Authority: Congress is the supreme authority of the Association and its Affiliates.
3.9 Composition: Congress consists of the WSA Chairperson, the Member Delegations, the International Helpers, the Zonal Representatives, the chief officer of each Affiliate or their alternates registered at the attended Congress, and the ISC Chairperson.
3.10 Member Representation: Each Member is represented in Congress by a delegation registered at the attended Congress to be referred to in these By-laws as the Member Delegation.
3.11 Member Delegation: Member Delegations are the delegates to the Zonal Councils or their alternates registered at the attended Congress.
3.12 Presiding Officer: The presiding officer of Congress is the WSA Chairperson.
3.13 WSA Chairpersons Selection: Congress or, if Congress is not convened, the Council selects the WSA Chairperson through guidance received in the Latihan Kejiwaan.
3.14 WSA Chairpersons Term: The term of the WSA Chairperson begins during the Regular Congress at which he or she is selected and ends during the next Regular Congress.
3.15 WSA Chairpersons Term Transfer: The term of the WSA Chairperson normally begins immediately upon his or her selection for all new business concerning the Congress selecting him or her and lasts until the completion of all old business on the agenda of the Congress ending his or her term.
3.15.1 Procedure for Deputy Chairperson Selection: From among the Chairpersons nominees for the Deputy Chairperson, a Deputy Chairperson is selected by the Council through guidance received in the Latihan Kejiwaan.
3.16 Quorum: A quorum of the Congress is two-thirds of the Members registered at a Congress.
3.17 Voters: Only Member Delegations vote.
3.18 One Vote: Each Member Delegation has one vote.
3.19 Proxy voting: Proxy voting is allowed. The policies and processes that define this proxy voting will be defined by Congress or by the WSC in consultation with the WSA member countries.
3.20 Procedures to Resolve Deadlock: In the event of differences of view arising between Member Delegations, the Chairperson may establish Zonal Council meetings or such other groupings of the Member Delegations as the Member Delegations may agree to. If differences persist, decisions are made through guidance received in the Latihan Kejiwaan. If consensus can not be reached, no decision is made; however, a resolution defeated at a previous Congress, which the Zonal Representatives unanimously agree to reintroduce unchanged at a subsequent Congress, is approved by Congress when supported by more than two-thirds of the Member Delegations.
3.21 Nominators: Except in the case of the appointment of the chief officers of the Affiliates, only Member Delegations may make nominations.

4.1 Definition: Congress groups the Members into Zones based on the wishes of each Member, geographical closeness, linguistic affinity and other practical considerations.
4.2 Zonal Council: In each Zone, a Zonal Council exists composed of representatives of the International Helpers, the Zonal Representative, not more than four delegates per Member, or their alternates registered at the attended meeting of the Zonal Council, these being the Members chief officer, the Members officer responsible for international affairs called the Organizational Councilor, and a male National Helper and female National Helper called the Kejiwaan Councilors.
4.3 Presiding Officer: The presiding officer of a Zonal Council is the Zonal Representative.
4.4 Representative: Each Zonal Council appoints a Zonal Representative, normally residing in the Zone, through guidance received in the Latihan Kejiwaan.
4.5 Temporary Zonal Representatives: After as much consultation as possible with the Members in the affected Zones, the Council may appoint temporary Zonal Representatives for those Zones unable to appoint permanent Zonal Representatives.

5.1 Composition: The World Subud Council (WSC), to be referred to in this resolution as the Council, consists of the Zonal Councils normally speaking through their Zonal Representatives, the WSA Chairperson, International Helpers, the chief officer of each Affiliate, the Chairperson of the Muhammad Subuh Foundation and the ISC Chairperson.
5.1.1 Preparatory Zonal Council Meetings: Zonal Councils shall normally meet prior to a Council meeting.
5.2 Authority: The authority of Congress, limited by the applicable decisions of Congress, is invested in the Council between Congresses.
5.3 Limitation: The authority of the Council does not extend to altering the Constitution of either the Association or the Affiliates.
5.4 Limitation: The authority of the Council does not extend to admitting and expelling Members or Affiliates.
5.5 Limitation: The authority of the Council does not extend to assigning a Member to a different Zone.
5.6 Presiding Officer: The presiding officer of the Council is the WSA Chairperson.
5.7 Chairpersons Responsibility between Congresses: Between Congresses the WSA and ISC Chairperson are responsible to Congress through the Council.
5.8 Voters: The voting members of the Council are the Zonal Representatives.
5.9 Quorum: A quorum of the Council exists if there are no fewer than five Zonal Representatives and one or more International Helpers present.
5.10 Meetings: The WSA Chairperson with the agreement of a majority of the Zone Representatives can convene World Subud Council meetings and any special meetings of the WSC. WSC meetings may take place inside or outside the District of Columbia.

6.1 Board of Directors: The Directors of WSA shall be the WSA Chairman and the Zonal Representatives. Each director shall be entitled to one vote in decisions made by the Board of Directors.
6.2 Removal: As directors of the Association, the Zonal Representatives are appointed by their Zonal Councils for a four to six-year term, and may be removed from office by those councils at any time. As a director of the Association, the Chairperson is appointed by the Congress for a term running from congress to congress, and may be removed from office by the WSC between congresses or by the WSA members at Congress or a special meeting of the WSA. The World Subud Council has the right to recommend to any Zone Council that its Zone Representative be removed as a zone representative and as director of the Association.
6.3 Quorum: In the meeting of the directors of the WSA, the quorum shall be a majority.
6.4 Meeting of Directors: The directors shall normally meet at least each year and the meeting shall be called by the Chairperson of the Association with the agreement of a majority of the Zonal Representatives. Written notification of meetings shall state the purpose, place, time and agenda and shall be delivered not less than one month or more than six months before the meeting. The meetings of directors may take place inside or outside the District of Columbia.
6.5 Meetings: Meetings of the Board of Directors may take place by telephone conference, email, video or web conference.
6.6 Decisions: Decisions of the Board of Directors shall be by consensus.
6.7 Officers: The secretary of the Association shall be appointed by the Board of Directors. The other officers of the Association shall be appointed by the ISC Chairperson, who is the executive of the Association. The secretary must be a distinct person from the chairperson. The Board of Directors has the right to remove from office the ISC Chairperson (or the executive of the Association) and his/her appointees.
6.8 Appointment of Committees: The board may appoint by consensus committees to exercise the authority of the board in the management of the Association.
6.9 Loans and grants from the WSA to directors and officers are prohibited.

7.1 Executive Committee: The Association executive committee is called the International Subud Committee and is referred to in these By-laws as ISC.
7.2 Executive Chairperson: Congress appoints the International Subud Committee Chairperson with the same term as the Chairperson to be referred to in these By-laws as the ISC Chairperson.
7.3 Procedure for the Selection of the ISC Chairperson: From among the Zonal Representatives nominees, the ISC Chairperson is selected through guidance received in the Latihan Kejiwaan and, if Congress is in session, proposed to Congress for approval.
7.4 Location: During each Regular Congress, Congress determines the location of ISC after the next Regular Congress or informs Council as to its preferences so that as soon as possible Council can make the determination.
7.5 Location: During each Regular Congress, Congress decides on the location of the next Regular Congress or informs Council as to its preferences.

8.1 Affiliates: Congress may grant affiliate membership in the Association to autonomous international Subud organizations referred to in these By-laws as Affiliates.
8.2 Conditions: Congress requires that Affiliates:
a) Have their founding document and all later changes to it approved by Congress.
b) Recognizes that whenever Congress entrusts the execution of one or more of the Aims of the Association to an Affiliate, Congress affirms its responsibility to safeguard the attainment of all the Aims of the Association.
c) Have their chief officer selected during a Regular Congress through guidance received in the Latihan Kejiwaan for the same term as the WSA Chairperson.
d) In the event of the permanent incapacity of their chief officer, have Congress or Council appoint a replacement chief officer chosen by the Affiliate through guidance received in the Latihan Kejiwaan.
e) Provide a seat on their governing body for the WSA Chairperson or the Chairpersons designate.
f) Report on their activities and finances to Congress and the Council in a manner satisfactory to Congress and the Council.
8.3 Representation: The representative of an Affiliate at Congress is the chief officer of the Affiliate or his or her alternate.
8.4 Member Nominations for Affiliate Heads: Candidates nominated for an Affiliate chief officer by Member Delegations shall be approved by the chief governing body of the affected Affiliate.
8.5 Right to Nominate: The representative of the Affiliate has the right to nominate one or more candidates chosen by the Affiliate for the position of its chief officer.

9.1 Accounts & Audit: ISC is to:
a) establish and maintain an adequate record-keeping system for the Association;
b) prepare and present to the Members a set of audited financial statements within six months of the end of the fiscal year, prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles for non-profit organizations.
9.2 Appointment of Auditor: Council appoints the auditor of the Association.
9.3 Fiscal Year: The Association’s fiscal year shall end on December 31.
10.1 Participant: Any body of the Association may grant the right to a person to become a Participant, that is participate except as to voting, in meetings of that body for a pre-set time period.
10.2 Bylaw and Article Changes: Changes to the Bylaws and the Articles of the Association can be made only by the Members during a Congress. Resolutions to change the Constitution or By-laws are to be circulated to all Members prior to one year before a Congress
10.3 Books and Records: The WSA shall maintain a list of registered members, annual accounts and record minutes of WSC meetings, WSA directors’ meetings, Congress and any special meeting or resolution of the WSA at its principal office in Washington D.C. or at a place to be determined by the WSC. Any member of the WSA has the right to inspect these records.
10.4 Liability: The Association shall indemnify any director or officer or former director or officer of the Association, or any person who may have served at its request as a director or officer of another corporation, whether for profit or not-for-profit, against expenses actually and necessarily incurred by him or her in connection with the defense of any action, suit, or proceeding in which he or she is made a party by reason of being or having been such a director or officer, except in relation to matters as to which he or she shall be adjudged in such action, suit, or proceeding to be liable for negligence or misconduct in the performance of a duty.
10.5 Liability of WSA: WSA is not responsible for any debts or obligations incurred by or actions or activities of any of its members.
10.6 Windup: On winding up the Association: Council shall decide the distribution of the assets of the Association.
10.7 WSA Archives: The WSA Archives is a permanent and integral part of the WSA. The World Subud Association Archives Charter defines the WSA Archives and its relationship with the WSA.