eXTReMe Tracker WARNING: The opinions expressed and linked to in this blog are not necessarily mine (anymore).

My ideas are constantly changing as I learn. Sometimes they even change midway through writing a post.

Tuesday, September 4

Separation of Church and State: Ten Moral Principles - Part 3

I realize now that it is a bit ambitious to try to evaluate multiple principles in one post, so I'll try one at a time.

We are committed to the principle of the separation of church and state.

Like I mentioned before, I'm not sure whether politics would be in my top ten moral principles. Imposing principles - which ones and how - seems to assume there are some "basic principles." I think the basics would come first. I'll think about that an maybe right some more about it later.

For now, I'll just explore the idea itself.

Before I can get very far, I think I'll need some sort of working idea about what a "church" is and what a "state" is. These aren't meant to be definitions just descriptions of my understanding about them.

A church is a community of people who share beliefs about morality. Traditionally, people use it to also include people who share beliefs about metaphysics as well as ethics. More specifically, church's are groups of people who share a common belief in a supernatural being or... force... and in some basic moral principles. Still, there are churches where members share common moral beliefs while disagreeing about metaphysics - have differing views about a belief in the supernatural, whether there is a god/gods/goddess(es), whether they're good, whether there's an afterlife, etc. Some folks would say that it's more of a "social club" than a church. I think, though, that a social club is focused on relationships while a church would focus on the moral improvement of its members.

A state is also a community of people. Community members may share some basic beliefs about morality, but I think the focus is more on establishing and imposing rules. Frequently, the rules are based on moral principles. The rules might be imposed by a single individual or by mutliple individuals with or without the agreement of the people upon whom the beliefs are imposed.

Now that I've got some basic ideas about terminology, I'll save further exploration for another post.

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