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Many people will reject these definitions, because they don't fit within their agendas. But whether or not they accept them, you need to keep them straight in your head in order to better understand them.

"Beginning with religion, our new definition is 'the values you use to define who you are.'

"Notice that there is no mention of God in this definition. We see religion as what you do to determine who you are. Far too many people in our society see themselves as something that just happened. They didn't put much thought into how they become what they became, so these people have a very weak religion. I find it ironic that most of the people who claim not to be religious do so because they don't want others to decide for themselves what they want to believe, yet they demonstrate no control over determining who they want to be either.

"So our view is that it is the religious people who make the conscience thought in controlling who they are, and the more religious a person is, the more thought they have put into it. Sure, many have decided to use the definitions provided by others, but the facts are, they have at least made choices to become something, rather than just be a product of their environment.

"As for our new definition of politics, we define it as 'determining the norms and customs that the members of any society use to interact with one another.'

"Here is another definition that is missing a word commonly found in it, and in this case the word is government. It is important that the word is removed, because as long as it is in there, liberals can always dominate the debate.

"Yet removing this word simply reflects reality. The government does not determine the norms and customs of our society. Anyone being passed by everyone else on the freeway doing 75 in a 65 mph zone knows that laws do not determine what we do. They can effect what we do, but they do not determine it. We must think beyond government if we want to be effective in determining how we are to interact with each other.

"Once we have God out of the definition of religion, and government out of the definition politics, its now possible to have meaningful discussions on these subjects. More importantly, religion can now be seen as an integral part of any discussion on politics, because our preference in politics comes from how we define ourselves.

"Yet as much as our preference in politics comes from our religious values, there is an important distinction between them that must be understood. Understanding this distinction is critical in understanding religion and politics, and that is 'for a truly functional society, no member of it needs to agree with anyone else on religion, yet we all should agree on politics.' This is the core of the dichotomy, and why they are related and cannot be defined without the other.

"From our perspective on religion, no two people can agree on religion. The only way that two people could have the same religion is if they were both the same person. While it is possible for many people to share the same values, most of those values are not valued the same.

"As an example, take a common Christian value that homosexuality is wrong. Most value this, but few would be the kind of person that stands on the side of a gay pride parade with a sign that screams "GOD HATES FAGS." That kind of person does not have the same religion as most Christians do.

"Once you have accepted that we all can't have the same religion, it is a lot easier to see that we all can share the same politics. Politics are not about who we are, but how we agree to deal with each other. Far too many people use their politics to define who they are, and this is a mistake. No one should ever compromise on his or her religion, but we all must compromise for the sake of politics; that's the name of the game.

"Like I said earlier, many people will disagree completely with these definitions.

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