The Other Social Values

Manila Bulletin, November 9, 2009 | Go to article overview
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The Other Social Values


Respect for personal dignity is only one of four fundamental social values, which should imbue all the decisions and actions we take in the discharge of our daily ordinary duties within the institutionwhere we work. There are three others.The first of the three is a complement to personal dignity. It calls on all of us to work for the broader common good so that individual persons would be working and living within an environment that facilitates their personal improvement and continuing development. The common good thus reinforces personal dignity, which it seeks to enhance. The better the environment, the easier it is for individual persons to gain respect for their dignity and for them to work towards their own personal perfection.It should also be clear that the common good is the “product” of the effort and heroic exertions of every one. Each one of us is obligated to contribute positively towards it. It is in this light that we understand why each person within an institution, for instance, is obligated to work towards helping realize the vision of the institution and achieving the institution’s set of strategic priorities. Doing so would help bring about the common good of the institution and of society more generally and from that enhanced common good, individual persons can draw benefits.With reference to the efforts, heroic exertions, and contributions from every one to the common good, the second of the three other social values presents itself. This is where subsidiarity comes in: it calls on each one of us to do our best and work for the common good of the institution where we work.

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