Friday, September 16, 2005

The Truth of Post-Modernism

I don't doubt but that God allows various philosophies of man to come in the vogue to challenge His people to understand spiritual truth better. Right-wing fundamentalists often make the mistake of rejecting new philosophies out of hand, without first looking at them and finding the half that is truth- which would help provide a much more salient response that a stubborn refusal to listen.
The best lies, are half-truths. Post-moderism is a half truth. It takes an obvious truthful reality and comes to an erroneous conclusion. The truthful reality is, that men see things differently, and believe differently. The erroneous conclusion is, that because men do, that makes it so. It is often said that the laws of physics are a most evident area in the post-modernist idea can be shown to fail.
I began to this of this in geometric terms. It takes two points to make a line and set a direction, does it not? The post-modernist has taken one point alone, that of the variety of human perception, and attempted to chart a direction. This is perhaps why it can be replied that the post-modernist can't even really say his core philosophy is correct, if he in fact is correct. If he is right, his ideas don't matter- they cancel themselves out; if he is wrong, they are irrelevant.
We can draw a line, however, if we add one additional truth to the truth that men percieve in a variety of ways. The second truth is this- that men are finite, imperfect and errant. Our conclusion now is this: that the variety of man's perception is really a demonstration of these characteristics; that the finite limits of man's perception cause him to see only a part of the truth, while the imperfect and errant qualities of man cause him to percieve or even create falsehood.
This cuts both ways. For the humanist, this is a denial of the preeminance of man's capabilities; for the right-wing fundamentalist, this is a denial of the ability to set truth in black and white, and to do away with gray areas- a denial of absolute certainty about all things. For Christians in general, it a call to have grace on those who we disagree with, and not be so quick to judge, realizing our own inability.
Post-modernism, when answered, is a challenge to both the world, and the church.

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