A More Gracious Social Order

“Hope does not exist in a conceptual vacuum, nor is it available to all configurations of culture. It is born in the belief that the sources of action lie within ourselves…”

“Hope is a human virtue but one with religious underpinnings. At its ultimate it is the belief, not that God has written the script of history, that He will intervene to save us from the error of our ways or protect us from the worst consequences of evil, but simply that He is mindful of our aspirations, with us in our fumbling efforts, that He has given us the means to save us from ourselves; that we are not wrong to dream, wish and work for a better world. In the end, great systems of thought are self-validating. To one who believes that the human condition is essentially tragic, the human condition will reveal itself as a series of tragedies. To one who believes that we can rewrite the script, history reveals itself as a series of slow, faltering steps to a more gracious social order.”

The Dignity of Difference, p. 178