Origins are difficult for most subjects and peoples. Some people find that geneology is of uptmost importance because one's pedigree shows one's roots. And roots show connection. Connection is about belonging. Instead of looking at one's individual geneology, others look to one's historical context, whether that be a specific nation or religion. Men seek to understand where and how they belong.
Family connections are useful for identifiers. As the child grows to understand and expand in his knowledge, the child comes to choose where he will belong. Will he remain within his familial context, or will he find a different "place" of belonging?
Some find their identity in their religion. These have committed because of "conversion experiences", or cultural upbringing. Religious identification are a means of coming to terms with one's need to "belong".
Still, others find meaning in their discipline of choice. These have a passion to know in depth and understand a certain subject of knowledge. These also have a "fraternity" of sorts.
Every human alive needs to belong, as only in belonging is there a sense of "being". Humans define themselves according to their greatest values. And these values define where one's commitment will be in vocation.
Belonging to a defined group also affirms certain beliefs, which are the chosen group's identifying boundary markers. These define the person's understanding of themselves within the group, as well as defining what is the expected behavior that represents the group's ideals.
Democracy does not have specified boundary markers. Democracy lends itself to various ways of group identification. Therefore, the individual is free to choose the path of his own values.
Belief, belonging and behavior all are "sign posts" that help the individual to function within a framework. All are needful for the individual to find meaning and purpose.
Some unfortunate souls are under the compulsion of others to define themselves by other's definitions. It is only in a democracy that one can fulfill one's dreams without compulsion from the outside, but from passion within.
Third Sunday of Advent
23 hours ago