I have really come to appreciate the values that our Constitution upholds. Our Constitution is what protects our culture from anarchy and affirms individual values of expression in one's life; liberty being of primary importance.
A couple of years ago in reading about moral development, I discovered that democracy was of ultimate importance for the full development of the human. Democracy allows freedom of conscience when it comes to various ways of expressing the "symbolic" of religious tradition. This is true justice of individuality, opinion and conviction.
The symbolic is understood in faith traditions to manifest ultimate values. These values of life are universal rights to happiness, which our Founder's "formed" in our Constitution.
These values are not just represented by the myths of faith, but also social critics that "see" and understand where the culture is "missing" an element that is necessary. Cultural critics bring about the social and cultural changes that are needed in the particular society. Tradition nor materialists usually embrace such with "open arms".
The highest "ideal" our Founders understood were the values of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Such values are framed in our FORM of government, where balance of power, equality under law, and our Bill of Rights gives value to each individual in making meaning of their life.
"Meaning" (symbol) many times means religion, but it does not always have to. Meaning can be made many times in free societies without religion, as one expresses what is internally important to that particular individual.
The real enemy to democracy and a free society in a Representative Republic is an exclusivity in outlook and attitude, whether it is bred on the heels of emotion-based religion, or hard-headed science.
Both science and religion speak of man, as man is a combination of intellect, emotion, and physicial being. These must all be affirmed in each individual "form", within the FORM of our government's Constitutional Republic.
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