Causes Less Than Yourself, by Robert Gore


When someone recruits you for a Cause Greater Than Yourself, run, especially if it’s a government doing the recruiting.

This time of year prompts tributes to Causes Greater Than Yourself (CGTY). You’re to count your blessings and rededicate yourself to one or more such causes. Christianity may be on the wane, however, a panoply of secular CGTY have sprung up to replace it and its good works, purportedly filling voids in souls. What’s best not to think about—if you wish to preserve your sanity—is how much of your life you’re devoting to causes less than yourself.

The widow of a dead soldier asks the questions, perhaps as she glances at the flag that draped her husband’s coffin, folded into its triangle, displayed in its case on the fireplace mantel. A veteran, broken in body, mind, and spirit, living in an apartment through the thin walls of which he can hear…

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