One universal quality of identity is that it gives life a meaning beyond life itself. It offers a connection to the world beyond the self. ... Whatever its form, identity offers a sense of life beyond the physical and material, beyond mere personal existence. It is this sense of a common world that stretches before and beyond the self, of belonging to something greater than the self, that gives strength not only to the community but to the individual as well. - Natan Sharansky, 'Defending Identity'