Family: holy, sacred, and saintly


Graphic created by Thomas Timlen using Gimp (Photo: From Flickr Commons. No known copyright restrictions.)



Shocking, yet true. On the Internet it says; “There are groups that are trying to destroy the sanctity of the family.”

My dictionary has two definitions for ‘sanctity’. It is hard to say which of these should apply in the context of this dire warning.

The first definition for sanctity is; “the state or quality of being holy, sacred, or saintly” as in; “the site of the tomb was a place of sanctity for the ancient Egyptians.”

So to use that definition, the warning is; “There are groups that are trying to destroy the holy, sacred, and saintly nature of the family.”

On this basis the family is something to place on an altar. Something to worship.

But what of dysfunctional families? What of spousal and child abuse within a family? What of divorce?

Are these characteristics worthy of worship? Are they ‘saintly’?

The second definition of ‘sanctity’ is “ultimate importance and inviolability”.

‘Ultimate importance’ implies that nothing is more important. So the family is more important than eating, breathing, and by definition, even more important than God.

‘Inviolability’ is defined as ‘never to be broken, infringed, or dishonoured’.

Therefore, no matter how dysfunctional a family may be, it must remain placed on an altar and worshipped, warts and all as the case may be.

In other words, even in cases of extreme spousal and child abuse, even with flagrant extramarital dalliances, the family must be honoured, perpetuated and worshipped.

The sanctity of the family must not be destroyed, no matter what.

The enemy of family

So what groups are seeking to destroy the sanctity of the family?

One only needs to read their manifesto to confirm their devious mission;

We support the belief that everyone deserves the freedom to love.

We hope to bring… Singaporeans closer to their family and friends.

Our movement stands for an open, inclusive society within our nation.

Such goals (only slightly paraphrased as they are above) seem to support the concept of uniting families rather than destroying them.

What is a family?

There are too many definitions to list here, however, there is one in particular that deserves attention, namely;

Family is “all the descendants of a common ancestor”.

One fact that is not widely recognised is that theists, atheists and those somewhere in-between, all peoples on the planet share a corresponding view regarding common ancestors.

A great number of theists, embracing the concept of creationism, believe that mankind originated from Adam and Eve. Therefore all subsequent generations on the planet can be traced back to the very first parents on this planet.

Meanwhile, a great number of atheists and others embrace Darwin’s theory of evolution. Tracing the origins of life back to the initial life forms, subsequent generations of species can be linked to the first single-cell organisms that appeared on the planet.

My big fat global family

The beauty of this situation is that both groups ultimately agree that every human on this planet is one way or the other a descendant of a common ancestor.

As such, every human is a member of the same family.

We are all related.

We are all brothers and sisters; cousins, aunts and uncles.

Wouldn’t it be beneficial for all to embrace movements aimed at recognising this universal truth and seeking to bring everyone closer to their family and friends.

To accept rather than to condemn, as one would wish for any family member.

To celebrate the global family, rather than deny it.

Imagine that.


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