I've been focusing on this because community health has such a big impact on individual health. Just turn on the news if you don't believe me!
I’ve found this to be particularly interesting. Our goal will determine what our actions should be. What is the ultimate purpose of life? What are we aiming for? What are we trying to accomplish? Without that answered we cannot fully express what we should be doing and more importantly, what roles we should be playing within a community to achieve the ends. Remember community defined:
“The product of people working together on problems, of autonomous and collective fulfillment of internal objectives, and of the experience of living under the codes of authority which have been set in large degree by the persons involved.”
Nisbet keeps coming back to function, roles, and authority. The community is defined by purpose, and so separated from any coherent purpose, people are often alienated from any life of significance. They have functions, maybe make money, companionship, entertainment, and amusement, but lack an ends towards which they are moving, like playing a game without any way to win or putting together a puzzle that doesn’t fit. This makes life become cynical and focused on utility and technological maximization instead of achieving ends.
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