52. Phi Beta Delta: Scientia Mutua Mundi

The motto of our society is Scientia Mutua Mundi, the world's shared knowledge. When we consider the contributions made to our daily lives by diverse peoples, we can appreciate just how important this idea is. Take food as an example. Every week we eat foods whose origins are a United Nations of cuisine.

The great thing about this sharing is that it makes our lives the better for it. A few minutes thought produces many, many examples of important aspects of our life that we borrow from other cultures. Music is a great instance. Its composers can be German or French or Finnish or Hungarian, but its pleasures are universal.

This value to sharing is so self evident that it comes as a rude shock when we find that there is not universal agreement about its values. Surely, we think, the value of the world's shared knowledge is crystal clear. Unfortunately though, there at work forces that dispute the value of internationalism. As heretic and thing to flout, wrote one thinker, they drew a circle to shut us out. But, went the refrain, we drew a circle and took them in. So it is with Phi Beta Delta and its members everywhere -- to build a circle that takes people in.