In thinking about how Barbu understood the integrative and disintegrative values in a democracy and how they have to be maintained "in tension", I think that the Quadralateral is a good way to analyze these values and how they are incarnated in one's life.
Scripture is a means for moral and religious value but I would think that Scripture being a defining element of the political realm would be limiting freedom of conscience, or aesthetic value. Ethics in this regard would be an undermining value to religious or moral tradition's understanding of value.
Tradition also upholds moral values, as it has been defined by the Church (or other religious authority), but Tradition also maintains religious value in social norms. Again, without reason, tradition runs rough-shod over cultural adaptation and change in regards to ethics.
Experience underlines how the individual formulates "his world" within a religious (or anti-religious), and political realm. Experience cannot be formed "outside of itself" without limiting individuality. Man's reason is useful to analyze, categorize and determine his course. So, experience does not uphold tradition or religion, as the "form" must be individually understood and embraced. But, experience does uphold aesthetic value, leaving room for individual's to "find their place" in this world. This is the ethic of human rights and personal identity.
Reason is used to understand, evaluate, and formulate, which is the scientific value of modernity. Although fragmentation has occurred within modern society because of science and rationality, isn't freedom about that very fragmentation? And isn't freedom what life is about?
Life without justice (rights) is a life that is defined by "outside sources" of religion and tradition. And this is not what modern democracies uphold or value.
And this is why our democratic Representative Republic is of ultimate value to me!
Seminary CM10: The Rise of the Nones
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