THE POWER OF UNQUESTIONED ASSUMPTION:

THIRTEEN MEGA IDEAS WHICH SHAPE/AFFECT 2001 DISCIPLES

 

                  Our 21st Century culture is adrift and confronted by a cafeteria of alternative belief and behavior systems.  (See James Sires, Why Believe Anything? and my paper, "Narrative Displacement in Man's Search for Absolutes;" "Comparative Displacement in Our Concepts of God, Man and Nature;" and "Dates and Isms As Cultural Indicators."

 

1.  Man makes right, not God.  The lawgiver alone determines what the civil as well as moral laws are to be.

2.  Every man possesses an innate moral sense.  All he must do is trust his feelings, especially as they relate to pleasure and pain, to know what is right and wrong.

3.  Man is good by nature, born good but corrupted by society--by its systems, institutions, and conventions.

4.  Happiness is the measure and goal of a good life.  An individual may do whatever he feels is right for himself, as long as he doesn't hurt anyone.

5.  Man too is an animal.  Only the fit and sexually attractive survive.

6.  Material and economic causes alone produce social change.  Existence precedes essence.  To reform society, its institutions and values, is to reform man.

7.  Only slaves and fools restrain their wills and desires.  All real men must be rebels and experimentalists.

8.  There is no God, only unconscious, mechanistic causation at work in human psychology and society.  Through science alone can man overcome his age-old infantile superstitions.

9.  Not only is Christianity a primitive, superstitious, untenable religion, but Christ is a flawed "savior" who bears much of the responsibility for the ignorance and suffering of human kind before the rise of science.

10. Life is meaningless apart from man's self-initiated, self-assertive acts.  A person creates his reality by acting heroically.  A man is what he wills himself to be.

11. The nature of man is determined by his environment or predetermined by his genes or both.  Individual responsibility and free will are illusions.

12. All is relative--all values, morals, standards, beliefs, etc.  Truth itself is relative.

13. In a pluralistic, relativistic world, universal, unifying, nonjudgmental acceptance and love alone can reconcile our differences and bring us peace.

 

(Streams of Confusion by Brad Scott (Crossway Books, Wheaton, IL), pp. 27, 28.  See also

6 Modern Myths About Christianity & Western Civilization by Philip J. Sampson (Inter-Varsity Press, Downers Grove, IL, 2001).

 

JDS