What is meant by the 'universe of meaning'?

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The 'universe of meaning', as Berger and Luckmann term it, is socially derived; it is a product of society and in turn feeds back and helps produce society.

A universe of meaning includes not only high level philosophical ideas about the meaning of life, but also everyday knowledge which is taken for granted. A universe of meaning requires constant 'legitimation'. It needs repeated reinforcement and justification. Members of society must be told and re-told that their universe of meaning is real, true, correct, and 'legitimate.' Without this support, a universe of meaning would tend to crumble, life would become meaningless, and the stability of society would be threatened.


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