The Larger ‘We’

“What the great religions understand is that society is larger than the state. Politics depends on pre-political virtues, nurtured in non-political environments: the family, the community, the congregation. These are where were first discover the give and take of reciprocity and the healing power of love and forgiveness. They are where we learn to negotiate the tensions between independence and inter-dependence. They are the matrix of the larger ‘We’ that makes possible the ‘I’. They are where we acquire moral intelligence. Without families, communities and friends, society becomes a mere aggregation of individuals, ‘the lonely crowd’, without trust or grace or meaning: without hope.”

The Home We Build Together pp. 225-226