In the past, I have written about philosophical reality, using an open, closed or flat "universe". These philosophical distinctions form ideological "worlds" and understanding. These "worlds" are what are useful to help us in bringing a larger identity to a personal one.
While enlarging our personal identity to include a "world" is important, it is no less important to affirm, search and find one's personal identity, when the "former world" is challenged. This work is done in adolescence, and into the college years, and sometimes in the middle aged years, where cognition is challenged with information that doesn't "fit" one's particular familial "world" and social contexts.
I understand this search, struggle and eventual commitment as a development of "self" in understanding, identity formation and vocation. Research suggests that one's personal identity can be stymied through abuse, limiting the child's development beyond that point in time, inhibiting development. I wonder how these limitations affect the development of personal identity.
While philosophical questions answer the "big questions" about how life should be and why, it does not answer or address personhood. Personhood is personal boundary matinence that understands where one's commitments lie and why, which is value clarification. Personal identity is based on these important ponts of development. This is what education is about. Education allows for the individual child, young person or middle ager to formulate their own way of viewing life, from many perspectives, broadening the opportunities and enlarging one's capacity to engage a larger world.
Philosophical questions should not be answered by an intellectual, or spiritual elite, otherwise, personal identity ceases to exist and the person becomes an object of Statism, or "state interests". This happens in coercive, oppressive, and uniform political "systems". Our country does not view the individual in such ways.
Our country's Founding Fathers understood that the individual was created with certain inalienable rights, which are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We Americans, must not allow our freedoms to be subverted in the name of any "high sounding moral virtue", such as "the common good", "public interest", or "community welfare". These are terms that play on man's false sense of responsiblity for another, in sacrificing their own personal boundary, to the demise of all civil, moral or rational "order". The "civil, moral and rational order" was the underlying belief of our Founding Fathers belief in natural law. And natural law is the basis of our rule of law and the natural sciences. We undermine these to our own personal destruction, as well as enabling corruption within and without government which affects us all.