Exploring Organic Alternatives

November 20, 2014


“There is also the practice of virtue, especially the cardinal virtues…” Painting by Gustave Léonard de Jonghe, titled “Kind Heart”.

We have also outlined the positive principles of an organic order that lend themselves to personal applications. Our second task consists in evaluating the extent to which we might apply these principles to our personal lives.

The family visit by Emile Auguste Pinchart.

The family visit by Emile Auguste Pinchart.

Organic remedies are accessible to all. Some of these involve very simple things that come naturally to man. We can cite, for example, any measure that encourages reflection and introspection as something that one can do as part of a return to order. There is also the practice of virtue, especially the cardinal virtues, since simple acts of virtue oppose the rule of “selfish vice” and contribute to an organic order and its passion for justice.

Painting by Arthur Elsley.

Painting by Arthur Elsley.

Any measure, no matter how small, that strengthens the worn social fabric of family, parish, community, or nation is a step towards this organic order. We must encourage any manner of leadership that expresses ties of mutual trust. We should think of concrete ways—by how we dress, speak, and lead—whereby we can truly be representative figures to those who look up to us. This would lead us to discover ways to embrace duty, responsibility, and sacrifice and reject a misguided and selfish individualism. Upon this social framework, an organic economy becomes possible.


As we have shown, an organic order leads to the fullest expression of a person’s individuality, addressing both the material and spiritual needs of the person. Applying organic principles to this individual development means taking measures that favor the rule of honor and its set of values. Among these measures, we can list any concrete means by which we promote that which is excellent and lasting; the cultivation of wholesome intellectual development and debate; or the appreciation of beauty, art, and all things sublime.

We should ponder these personal avenues and then have the courage to adjust our lives accordingly.Subscription1



John Horvat II, Return to Order: From a Frenzied Economy to an Organic Christian Society—Where We’ve Been, How We Got Here, and Where We Need To Go (York, Penn.: York Press, 2013), 340-1.


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