Strand: Church and Tradition (CTPCE1)
The Catholic Church provides a specific religious context for exploring fundamental questions of meaning and purpose.
Investigate Church teachings on contemporary social and ecological issues and how they inform decisions made by Catholics for human flourishing and how they might influence decisions for human flourishing generally.
The human search for meaning is as old as humanity itself. For all other animals, there is no evidence for this level of consciousness. Only humans can ask questions about the meaning and purpose of their lives. For many, this revolves around belief in a god and in the afterlife, and the practice of religion; for others meaning is constructed in spiritual, but not necessarily religious terms (human values, commitments etc.); for some, the meaning they decide is that ‘there is no meaning’.
By their nature, human beings are inclined to seek a deeper sense of happiness than mere hedonistic notions of pleasure and the absence of pain. Human flourishing can be understood as living in accord with what is intrinsically worthwhile to human beings— purpose, meaningful relationships, good health, and contribution to the community. Within the Christian Tradition, humans flourish when conditions allow people to live in right relationships and contribute to the common good.