Reverence has more to do with how we relate than the religion we profess. The reverent soul ultimately seeks to elevate humanity. She or he works to preserve what’s good and seeks to make better what needs improving. That starts at the personal level. It’s about becoming a better person and making the world better, too.
Social mores and customs have loosened up considerably. Folks are not as repressed as they once were. They have less unreasonable guilt and shame about relatively inconsequential things and are therefore less “neurotic.” But we’ve paid a dear price for the “whatever feels right for you” relativism that’s replaced our older respectability norms. And we don’t have as clear a sense of decency and civility as we once had.
We live in an age of unprecedented entitlement. Almost everything once regarded as a privilege or something to be earned is now regarded as an inherent right. As a result, many people have come to expect far more than they feel obliged to give, which has set a disatrous precedent for the character formation of our children. This makes the second commandment of sound character development and its message of gratitude very hard to embrace.
Teachers have known for some time that some of the biggest obstacles to achieving academic success arise out of some students’ inadequate personal and social development.