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Old 12-20-2012, 11:10 AM   #68
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Virginia
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PBS just released an interesting show on this topic called First Freedom.

I was home sick and stumbled upon watching it. Very interesting and enlightening, giving a lot of background into the concept, evolution and thus, meaning and intent of religious freedom as enshrined in the First Amendment.

Some takeaways:
  • Most or even all the founding fathers were, individually, religious in some way or another, and deeply valued to role of religion in society in general.
  • They were, however, a very diverse group of believers and those religious differences threatened to derail the proceedings leading to the Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation and later, the Constitutional Convention.
  • They were deeply suspicious of linking or enmeshing religion with government or other power of state in any way and it was clear that most, if not all, wanted to keep these institutions seperate and independant.
  • The Constitution is remarkable in the context of its times and very conspicuous in its very secular nature, never even mentioning the word God, much less Jesus or Christianity, and mentions religion mainly in a proscriptive rather than prescriptive sense.
  • This "wall of separation" has been a remarkable success to both the flourishing of religion in the U.S. and the stability of our governing institutions.

Anyways, well worth a watch, IMHO.

Last edited by Rhumb; 12-20-2012 at 11:11 AM.
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