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Slide 1 - 8-Jan-15 1 Worldview Boutique Some key points from James Sire’s The Universe Next Door
Slide 2 - 8-Jan-15 2 Why this book? Outline basic worldviews that underlie the way we think Trace historically how these worldviews developed Show postmodernism’s twist Understand ourselves and others so we can genuinely communicate
Slide 3 - 8-Jan-15 3 Worldview defined "A world view is a set of presuppositions (assumptions which may be true, partially true or entirely false) which we hold (consciously or subconsciously, consistently or inconsistently) about the basic make-up of our world." -- Sire
Slide 4 - 8-Jan-15 4 Worldview: An iceberg analogy
Slide 5 - 8-Jan-15 5 What a worldview does . . . One’s worldview determines how the events and circumstances of life will be understood . . . accepted . . . and acted upon.
Slide 6 - 8-Jan-15 6 Sire’s 8 questions What is prime reality? What is the nature of external reality, the world around us? What is a human being? What happens at death? Why is it possible to know anything? How do we know what is right and wrong? What is meaning of human history? What personal, life-orienting core commitments are consistent with this worldview?
Slide 7 - 8-Jan-15 7 How important are religious beliefs to one’s world view? “Theology is not simply a system of beliefs to be added alongside the others. Theology is the master blueprint on which all other blueprints are mapped” -- Paul Hiebert, missionary anthropologist
Slide 8 - 8-Jan-15 8 Christian Theism Subtitle: A universe charged with the grandeur of God Knowledge, death, reality, ethics, history, and the realness of human beings are all focused on God.
Slide 9 - 8-Jan-15 9
Slide 10 - 8-Jan-15 10 Deism Sire’s subtitle: The clockwork universe Timeline: 1500 God is distant: an intellect to be recognized not a person to be worshipped is an architect; not a lover or judge Cosmos is not fallen or abnormal John Locke, Buckmeister Fuller, Voltaire, Albert Einstein
Slide 11 - 8-Jan-15 11 The cosmos in Deism Cosmos is a closed, linear cause and effect system “Clockwork universe” -- God simply left it to run on its own God, as the First Cause, never intervenes Miracles are not possible
Slide 12 - 8-Jan-15 12 Naturalism Subtitle: The silence of finite space Timeline: 1630 Dialectical materialism / secular humanism God is removed: history was self-activating Human personality is only an interrelation of chemical properties Values are manmade Bertrand Russell, Astrophysicist Carl Sagan
Slide 13 - 8-Jan-15 13 Naturalism “Free will as it is traditionally conceived …simply does not exist…. There is no way that the evolutionary process as it is currently conceived can produce a being that is truly free to make choices” – William Provine, naturalistic, atheistic biologist at Cornell University
Slide 14 - 8-Jan-15 14 Naturalism C.S. Lewis in his book Miracles – Naturalism is self-refuting because it is inconsistent with the validity of reasoning.
Slide 15 - 8-Jan-15 15 Nihilism Sire’s subtitle: Zero point Timeline: 1870 Extreme pessimism / skepticism Nothing has meaning, value, significance, dignity or worth Human beings are conscious machines with no ability to effect their destiny Human animal only invents values B.F. Skinner
Slide 16 - 8-Jan-15 16 Existentialism Subtitle: Beyond Nihilism Timeline: 1920 Humanity is central: people make themselves who they are Knowledge is subjective No absolute moral values History is uncertain and even unimportant Supernatural is brushed aside
Slide 17 - 8-Jan-15 17 Existentialism - 2 flavors Atheistic Theistic
Slide 18 - 8-Jan-15 18 How existentialists view the Bible Even the theistic version says that the Bible, though “religiously true,” is historically untrustworthy. Tillich, Sartre, Camus
Slide 19 - 8-Jan-15 19 Journey to the East: Eastern Pantheistic Monism Many (if not all) roads lead to the One Ideas are not really important Time is unreal History is cyclical Desire to enter the undifferentiated One; in one sense, each person is God
Slide 20 - 8-Jan-15 20 A Separate Universe Sire’s subtitle: The New Age – Spirituality Without Religion Timeline: 1965 “Core” experience is cosmic consciousness No personal God; only a mysterious Force; no Lord of the Universe unless it be us Borrows heavily from animism Actress Shirley McClaine
Slide 21 - 8-Jan-15 21 New Age and altered consciousness The invisible universe is accessible through altered states of consciousness Drugs used to enhance human consciousness
Slide 22 - 8-Jan-15 22 Postmodernism Sire’s subtitle: The vanished horizon All stories equally valid Focus changes from being to knowing Paradoxically, reality is forever hidden Any story but my own is oppressive Social good = whatever society takes it to be at the moment
Slide 23 - 8-Jan-15 23 Postmodernism The postmodernist stares blankly at any claims to truth and shrugs: “Okay if it works for you.” “There are many kinds of truths and consequently, there is no truth” -- Nietzsche
Slide 24 - 8-Jan-15 24 Wayne Stayskal, Tampa Tribune
Slide 25 - 8-Jan-15 25 Postmodernists and truth “Truth is what one’s peers let one get away with” -- Richard Rorty “Postmodern ethics inevitably slides in the direction of nihilism, holding that since nothing is really true, nothing is necessarily good” -- Gerard Reed
Slide 26 - 8-Jan-15 26 A View from the Middle East: Islamic Theism Emphasizes God’s oneness, transcendence and sovereignty Nothing happens in world outside of God’s divine decrees Devout Muslims strive to follow divine instructions in even the smallest part of life
Slide 27 - 8-Jan-15 27 Secularism Secular people A topic not dealt with specifically in Sire
Slide 28 - 8-Jan-15 28 Secular people They live without a daily awareness of or reference to God and His church They think God and His people are irrelevant To them Christianity is boring and perhaps even untrue
Slide 29 - 8-Jan-15 29 Secular people They may look and sound religious . . . Their gods are things like money, sex, materialism, success, power, social acceptance or some philosophical system