We at The Interim remember and thank those who sacrificed many years ago so that we would be free to live, flourish, and fight other battles.
The blog Gods of the Copybook Headings has an excellent post on Remembrance Day in which the anonymous author reminds us of the moral underpinnings of the freedom bought with the blood of the brave and that remembering those who sacrificed the most must be more than ritual:
When the word sacrifice is used in remembrance ceremonies its origin, and echo, is Christian. It is Christ on the Cross. Just as He suffered for us, they the soldiers suffered for us. To the believer, then, November 11th has a double meaning, as it would have to those who first marked Armistice Day nine decades ago. Even a comparatively secular contemporary writer, Rudyard Kipling, infused his short short The Gardener with Christian allusion and allegory.
For good, and ill, Christianity is no longer the living religion it was then, or even thirty or forty years ago. It is seen today as a weekend hobby, resorted to in times of crisis, and then pushed to back of mind. Little, arguably nothing, has come to replace that living force in our culture. David Warren alluded to this in a recent column on Faith and Freedom. You can deny, as I do, that freedom requires faith. It does require, however, some sort of system of belief and value. A nation driven by whim and will is not a nation that will long be free. The Founders of both Canada and America understood this fact. They deferred, to a greater or lesser extent, to religion to provide that moral backbone for society.
While the message of sacrifice lingers in modern Canadian culture, the existence of evil is denied. There is no evil, we are told, only misunderstanding and reaction to suffering. This is why Remembrance Day has become only a ritual. Its meaning is lost, not only because of time, but because the spirit of that age is gone.