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  • The common good is that which belongs to us all by virtue of our shared humanity. A simple definition of the common good is ‘the sum total of social conditions which allow people, either as groups or as individuals, to reach their fulfillment more fully and more easily’.
    Promoting the common good cannot be pursued by treating each individually separately. Because we are interdependent, the common good is more like a multiplication sum, where if any one number is zero then the total is always zero. If anyone is left out and deprived of what is essential, then the common good has been betrayed.

    I believe the common good is about how to live well together. It is the whole network of social conditions which enable human individuals and groups to flourish and live a fully, genuinely human life. At the heart of the common good, solidarity acknowledges that all are responsible for all, not only as individuals but collectively at every level. The principle of the common good expands our understanding of who we are and opens up new sources of motivation.

    The fulfillment which the common good seeks to serve is the flourishing of humanity. Such development I think requires that people are rescued from every form of poverty, from hunger to social isolation and spiritual emptiness; it requires the opportunities for education, creating a vision of true partnership and solidarity between peoples; it calls for active participation in economic and political processes and it recognises that every human person is a spiritual being with instincts for love and truth and aspirations for happiness.
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