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23
I’ll begin with a quote from Clement of Alexandria, who described truth coming from our Creator, not directly but ‘in the way in which showers fall down on the good land, and on the dunghill, and on the houses.  And similarly both the grass and the wheat sprout; and the figs and any other reckless trees grow on sepulchers.  And things that grow, appear as a type of truths.  For they enjoy the same influence of the rain.  But they have not the same grace as those which spring up in rich soil, inasmuch as they are withered or plucked up.’  We should search for those truths which spring from the rich soil, wherever we might happen to find them.

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Posted in: Education
29

The philosophy of individualism is captured in the works of Clement of Alexandria (Clement), Augustine, and Thomas Aquinas—among many others.  These philosopher’s works are not only regarded as among the best of their respective periods, but each one provides a different aspect in regards to individualism.  Clement describes the relationship between an individual and his Creator, Augustine the characteristics of two communities-one of which is oriented towards our Creator and the other towards man himself, and Thomas outlines how individuals of the community oriented toward our Creator are to act.

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Posted in: General
07
It can be described as a framework where individuals possess the ability to personally make their own choices and take actions.  This is not unconstrained choice—for that is merely anarchy.  Rather it is the ability to make uncoerced choices, to the extent that is possible within a society.  This is freedom.  There are several aspects to this framework.  The first is the ability for an individual to make their own decisions.  There is no constraint as to the things one may make decisions about.  On the other hand, there is also an acknowledgement that one’s decision must not impose upon another’s freedom.  In this system it is the individual which matters most, and government exists only to ensure that equal liberty is maintained across all individuals.

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Posted in: General
22
These next blogs will look at the basic positions of collectivism and individualism mentioned in the previous post. We’ll start first with collectivism, which is captured within the philosophies of Plato and Aristotle. We’ll use these two philosophers for a number of reasons. First, Plato was viewed by both Clement of Alexandria and Augustine as the Greek philosopher who came closest to understanding truth. Second, their writings have historically been used by many other philosophers to construct their own arguments, or used others work who had in turn had relied upon Plato and Aristotle. Scholasticism was an attempt to use Aristotle’s logic and metaphysics frameworks to create a systematized Christian logic from the Middle Ages up to the time of our country’s founding. The philosophic notions underlying the –isms of today also can be traced to these philosophers.

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Posted in: General
06

Greetings! I’m glad you are here.

Let me begin in a somewhat unlikely place. I don’t know about you, but my life was affected by the events of 9/11. This journey began with trying to understand the events of that day and make sense of them. What I found is that most people believe that we as individuals make the best decisions for ourselves and those we care about. There is a desire for freedom to make those choices. However, while most people express the desire for freedom, it seems to exist in relatively few places. It doesn’t matter what your religion is or on what part of the globe you live. Indices, such as the Heritage Foundation’s Freedom Index, indicate it is a relatively rare thing to find.

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Posted in: General
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About Dan Wolf

Dan WolfMy goal is that my writing will help you to get started on your own journey of discovery, or help you along the way on a journey you may have already begun. Our Founders considered education, religion, morality, and virtue to be the cornerstones for any successful society. Being successful requires understanding both the languages of reason and faith; reason alone is insufficient.