The Freedom Habits

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birds_blue_titleDavid Rodeback

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The Freedom Habit

Have you ever asked, “What can I do today, so my children will be free tomorrow?” The answer probably is not some grand and daring act. It is more likely a set of small habits, cultivated one day or one week at a time, and maintained for years and decades.

This digest of (mostly) David Rodeback’s thoughts — with links to worthwhile readings elsewhere, with which I may nor may not agree — is dedicated to the conviction that, to survive, freedom requires not only knowledge, but proper habits — hence “The Freedom Habit.” Thus this site, as it grows, will offer the following:

  • commentary on lasting principles and the passing scene,
  • a citizen’s primer on principles and structures of good government,
  • a tutorial on getting involved and doing it effectively, and
  • a forum for discussing current events and their implications for freedom and limited government — which discussions I hope you will join.

Here I divide all this into habits so that we don’t forget any of them. All the Study in the world will be impotent if we do not Act. We will often Act foolishly or ineffectively, if we fail to Study, Observe, or Discuss conscientiously. And the scope of our influence, as we Discuss and Act, will be unnecessarily limited if we fail to Report. And I’ve lately added Remember to the list of habits.

I’m not saying that all of these must be daily habits, if we wish to remain free. But the wise citizen will want to attend to each of them regularly, and I propose to help however I can.

This site is practical and theoretical, local and universal, dull and boring . . .

No, wait. I’m trying for captivating, riveting, scintillating, not dull and boring. In a pinch I’ll settle for simply intelligent and civil. And useful, or what’s the point?

Habits of Free People

Pray

To Pray isn’t everything, and it doesn’t substitute for other habits listed here. But it is something. If candid, personalized prayer fits into your belief system, I respectfully suggest making it a daily habit.

Explore this habit.

Study

We must Study. Alexis de Tocqueville wrote, “When one examines the Constitution of the United States, . . . it is frightening to see how much diverse knowledge and discernment it assumes on the part of the governed.”

Explore this habit.

Observe

History will help us see patterns and trends, but there is no substitute for watching what’s happening how — including what political actors are attempting to cause to happen in the future. We must continually Observe.

Explore this habit.

Discuss

When we Discuss, we test our thoughts, knowledge, and ideas against those of others. We won’t all agree, and we may not change anyone’s mind (even our own), but we’ll be smarter and wiser for the effort, and we’ll learn new respect for people who think differently — if we get this habit right.

Explore this habit.

Act

We may pray, study, observe, and even discuss all we want, but if we do not Act, our prayer is vain, our study is selfish, our observations are useless, and our discussion is just so much wind.

Explore this habit.

Report

What happened when you acted? What did you learn when you observed, studied, or discussed? You’ll inform and encourage us, when you Report. Come to think of it, feel free to report here.

Explore this habit.

Remember

To Remember is to address the past, present, and future with gratitude, vigilance, and honor. It is to give permanence, or at least greater longevity, to our efforts when we Pray, Study, Observe, Discuss, Act, or Report. Remembering is not just for holidays.

Explore this habit.

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For David Rodeback’s thoughts and writings on other subjects, including reading, writing, religion, and occasionally arithmetic, see BendableLight.com.
What About LocalCommentary.com?
Longtime readers may want to know that my old blog and web site still exist at LocalCommentary.com. I’ll be adapting and moving some of the highlights here, if they not about politics and government, or to BendableLight.com, if they are on other topics. Beginning in mid-October 2014, discussions specific to American Fork, Utah County, Alpine School District, and the State of Utah will be here at FreedomHabit.com/local/