The politico-cultural foundation of the constitution, as enshrined in its preamble, can be summarized by three words: God, homeland, and family.
The preamble starts with a reference to the first line of Hungary’s old national anthem, which asks God to bless the Hungarian people. Although the constitution itself clearly embodies the principle of separation of church and state, it also refers to their cooperation. And despite recognizing the country’s various religious traditions, it explicitly mentions the Christian roots of Europe, as well as the role of Christianity in the history of the Hungarian nation.
The new constitution says that a marriage is solely a union of a man and a woman, and furthermore, that Hungary protects the family as the basis of the nation.
The last controversial element in the constitution is the issue of nationhood. A foreign observer should know that Hungarian political life is rather historically conditioned. This means that despite the prevalence of familiar pragmatic or ideological issues in the country’s political debates—such as the role of the market and state, questions of human rights, and so forth—the main dividing lines are not those that are well-known in Western Europe. Rather, Hungarian political life is seen only in relation to religious tradition and in the context of an interpretation of Hungary’s past—mainly that of the 20th century.
The constitution, for example, proudly mentions Saint Stephen, the founder of the Hungarian state and the first King of Hungary (1000-1038). It also makes explicit reference to other great forebears of the country, and makes note of the intellectual and spiritual unity of the nation, which is the patrimony of every Hungarian citizen, and which was torn apart by the ideological movements and international conflicts of the 20th century.
(See also Svar’s previous post at Patriactionary.)