Monday, July 20, 2009

For Practicality's Sake Or For Tradition's?

It is being debated whether the Australian Parliament might end the practice of reciting the Lord's Prayer at the start of each session. It is a tradition more than a century old and as such many question its relevance in today's secular society.

But what puzzles me is that many traditions seem to be followed not because they are in any way relevant but because they are cherished traditions.

What is the imperative? To follow tradition for the sake of following tradition or to follow tradition only when deemed relevant to today's society?

If we uphold tradition only if relevant to today's society, why even call them traditions? Why not just call them “relevant practices”? Is not tradition almost by definition not practical, hence why it is referred to as tradition.

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