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World Views: What is True? - Building a Foundation
  • What are the Major World Views?

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World Views: What is True?

Building a Foundation

Jerry Solomon

  1. What are the major world views?
    World views are in collision in our society. Various ideas and ideologies are vying for our attention and allegiance. This conflict of world views is even more intense because we live in a pluratistic world that has rejected absolute standards and values.

    1. Theism (Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Christianity is our focus)
      1. Monotheism. There is one eternal being, God, who created all things.
      2. Creation Ex Nihilo. God created all things out of nothing, and He is separate from His creation.
      3. Supernaturalism. The universe is an open system in which God is involved.
      4. Revelation. God has revealed His character and will through nature, the Scriptures, and Jesus Christ.
      5. Man's Nature. Man is in God's image but fallen from it.
      6. Man's Need. Because of his fallen state man is in need of salvation that is provided by God through the sacrificial death of His son, Jesus Christ.
      7. Man's Destiny. Man has an eternal destiny either in the presence of God or in separation from Him.

    1. Naturalism
      1. Modernism
        1. Materialism. The universe is a closed system and God is irrelevant
        2. (atheism deism). "Religious humanists regard the universe as self-existing and not created (I){2} Humanists still believe that traditional theism, especially faith in the prayer-hearing God, assumed to love and care for persons, to hear and understand their prayer, and to be able to do something about them, is an unproved and outmoded faith" (II).
        3. Evolution. Progress and evolutionary change are inevitable. "Humanism believes that man is a part of nature and that he has emerged as the result of a continuous process" (I).

        4. Autonomy. Man is autonomous, self-centered, and will save himself. "We find insufficient evidence for belief in the existence of a super- natural; ... As non-theists, we begin with humans not God, nature not deity" (II).

        5. Human reason. Education is the guide to life; intelligence and freedom guarantee full human potential. "We can discover no divine purpose or providence for the human species. No deity will save us; we must save ourselves (II) While there is much that we do not know, humans are responsible for what we are or will become."

        6. Science. Science is the ultimate provider for both knowledge and morals. "We affirm that moral values derive their source from human experience. Ethics are autonomous and situational, needing no theological or ideological sanction"(II)

      2. Postmodernism-the future of naturalism{3}
      3. Based on the philosophy that all language is political and that most distinctions we make in life are artificial, some have adopted a relativistic view culture of truth. In general, Christian theism was the predominant world view until the 1860s. Modernism came next, slowly replacing the biblical world view with Marxist, Freudian, and Darwinist ideas, based upon reason and science. After WWII, the skepticism of postmodernism began to replace the confidence of modernism.

      Western Civilization

          1. Truth is culturally based.
          2. Reality is in the mind of the beholder.
          3. We can't think independently because we are defined by our culture.
          4. There is no "transcultural objectivity."
          5. There is no progress.
          6. Nothing is ever proven.

    1. Pantheism (New Age Movement)

      1. Monism. New Agers believe that all is one. There are no ultimate distinctions between humans, animals, or the rest of creation.
      2. Pantheism. Since New Agers believe that all is one, the next logical assumption is that all is god. All of life has a spark of divinity.
      3. Human divinity. If all is one and all is god, then we should conclude that we are gods.
      4. Cosmic consciousness. Human beings must discover their own divinity by experiencing a change in consciousness. According to New Agers, the human race suffers from a collective form of metaphysical amnesia.
      5. Reincarnation. New Agers believe that we travel through endless cycles of birth, death, and reincarnation in order to work off our bad karma.
      6. Moral relativism. New Agers think in terms of grey, not black and white. They often believe that two conflicting statements can both be true.