Worshipping God with our Minds


 Dallas M. Roark, Ph.D


            There is a physicist who writes interesting stuff.   His name is  Paul  Davies   and I believe he has taught at the University of Adelaide in Australia.   He is not a believer that I know.  However, one of the most interesting conclusions that he has reached is that  one of the most overlooked items in the Universe is mind.  He wrote: "through my scientific work I have come to believe more and more strongly that the physical universe is put together with an ingenuity so astonishing that I cannot accept it merely as brute force. There must, it seems to me, be a deeper level of explanation.  Whether one wishes to call deeper level "God" is a matter of taste and definition.  Furthermore, I have come to the point of view that mind, ie. conscious awareness of the world--is not a meaningless and incidental quirk of nature, but an absolutely fundamental facet of reality. (the Mind of God, p. 16)    Davies asked the question:  If the world is rational, at least in large measure, what is the origin of that rationality?  It cannot arise solely in our minds, because our minds merely reflect what is already there." ( p. 25)  We are so close to it, it is a part of us, and  the closer it is the more it is overlooked.
            You have seen  ads on the TV  promoting  fund raising for some of the black colleges and universities,  and  one of the  phrases is this:   “It is a terrible thing to waste a human mind.”   This can  be done by  neglect,  laziness, or indifference.
            Pascal wrote  once concerning  man, that he is the  pride and refuse of the universe.  The pride  relates to the issue  of mind.  The refuse  relates to his sin.  
            I have a sister  who is  80  and  she is losing her mind.  The last time I visited her I  told her to come to see us.  She said,  I don't know where you live.   At a funeral a year ago,  she  thought she  recognized my brother  but she could not remember who he was and where he lived.   Her  mind is going.    If it had been her heart in which she was not able to move around much,  or if it were cancer  that had been eating away in her body,  one could  still carry on a conversation, but with  dementia  or Alzheimer’s  that is not possible.  What is lost in these diseases  is the real  person. ..  The real person is slipping away  and only the shell of a body  remains.   Your mind is the most significant part of your existence.

            It is with the mind that we are to worship God.   It is the mind that brings  creative inventions into existence.   It is the mind  that  enables us to make  wise decisions about issues in life  whether it be ethics,  finance, or health.
            Consider the words of Jesus,  : "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'  This is the first and greatest commandment."  (Mt. 22:37-38)
            We may be inclined to think in terms of  simply  "loving God"   and have our own restrictions, and reservations.    The command of Jesus relates to totality of being and that includes our minds.   Since my focus today is on the mind,  I will not  address the matter of the heart and soul.  
            Your mind and  the  quality of rationality  is part of what makes you the image of God.   No other creature can think like humans do.   Animals can be trained, they can solve simple problems,  but they cannot abstract,  generalize, and conceptualize  about  non-existent things,   the subjective statements,  if then-that-will happen  kind of thinking.   Humans can do this and our minds relate us to being in the image of God.
            It is by means of our minds that we know right and wrong.    Humans are the only creatures that raise issues like:  should I do this?  or not?    Animals kill when they are hungry, and if they are satisfied, a herd of Zebras can walk by in safety.   If they are hungry, the zebras are in danger.  Many animals mate only when the season comes upon them.  Otherwise, there are no sexual experiences out of season, as far as I know.   Humans, however, decide about sexuality and make decisions  that  can destroy lives   or  bring happiness in a family.

Recently a young couple confessed  that they had  broken their pledge about True Love Waiting and  the young girl was pregnant.   They both broken their pledge, and in talking with the parents of the girl the father was heartbroken because she had consciously (mind) lied about where they were going and what they were going to do.  She was deceptive purposely and that is a mental act.   An animal would not be doing that.  But we humans can do it.

            Humans are creatures that can use the mind to confuse and mislead other minds. Consider the family of Jesus, " When his family heard about this, they went to take charge of him, for they said, "He is out of his mind."  And the teachers of the law who came down from Jerusalem said, "He is possessed by Beelzebub! By the prince of demons he is driving out demons." (Mark 3:21)   Their intent was to use their minds over the mind of Jesus.
            Even Paul was accused of being out of his mind by Festus...
At this point Festus interrupted Paul's defense. "You are out of your mind, Paul!" he shouted. "Your great learning is driving you insane."  "I am not insane, most excellent Festus," Paul replied. "What I am saying is true and reasonable.  (Acts 26.24)

            But it is by means of the mind that we counter such confusion and error.
Jesus healed a man who had been demon possessed and the wonderful expression is used in describing this... he was dressed and in his right mind..."(Mk5:15) When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid.
            The mind is our only means of sorting out truth from falsehood.   (Col.2:20-3:1)  “Since you died with Christ to the basic principles of this world, why, as though you still belonged to it, do you submit to its rules:   "Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!"?  These are all destined to perish with use, because they are based on human commands and teachings.  Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence.  Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God."  
            There is much in the world that is claimed as wisdom and has cultural acceptance. The only way you can sort these things out is by means of the mind.  Of course, you must have a standard on which you can compare these practices,  but it is the mind that does the measuring. In a more pointed statement ( Col. 2:8)    Paul wrote,   " See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.   It is only by mental evaluation that you can do this.  There is much philosophy and religion that is anti-Christian.   There is philosophy that can be used in connection with the Christian faith, and there are philosophers who have been positively Christian in their outlook.  
            There are great minds in the history of Western culture that have had enormous influence through the centuries.   Let me mention four for historical purposes.  We can begin with Augustine who lived in the 4-5th centuries.  He was influential on Aquinas, Calvin, and Luther. Aquinas became the official theology of the Catholic tradition, and Luther and Calvin are greatly influential in Protestantism's roots.  All of these people worked hard in knowing divergent philosophies.  They rejected much of philosophy in their time because they knew what it was and the problems that were current.   They were not lazy people.  They studied hard, wrote volumes and had great far reaching influences.
            What can you do....  Prepare yourself to the fullest.  Study the whole range of the curriculum for what it can do for you and how you can use it.   (Warning: you will never know what some uninteresting subject may be needed in the future.)  You are in the process of preparing yourself for encountering an increasingly hostile world.  You must dedicate your mind to the task of sorting out bad and false philosophy from that which is good and Godly.   The big contribution you can make is to search and teach the truth in contrast to the cultural standards.   The truth must be taught in love as well as truthfulness. Attitude is important.   There is a story of a farmer feeding the chickens.   If you throw the corn at the chickens they will flee from you.  If you stand and gently drop the corn they will crowd around you without any sense of danger.  
            There are a couple of other comments about the mind that I would like to remind you about. 
            The first comes from the awful rebellion of the mind ( Rom. 1:28-) "Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done.  They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents....;"
            Notice the phrase "since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God..."  Among other things they become "God-haters" insolent, arrogant and boastful...all qualities of the mindset in its negative mode.
            Think for a moment this statement:  "The mind is like a sheet of white paper in this, that the impressions it receives the oftenest, and retains the longest, are black ones." If you fill you mind with filth that will be its continual meditation.    Let me give you an example of this.  A friend and I go to nursing homes and entertain once a month.   Recently I thought about learning a new song.   There was a funny little song by Doc Watson called Traveling Man.  I played it over a number of times to copy down the words, then I played it many times to try to learn the tune.  I would play it over 6 or 8 times in once session just trying to get the tune right.  But there were many sessions and the result was the tune embedded in my mind.   When I wake up the tune and words are going thru my mind.  When I relax the same thing occurs. When I am driving down the road the tune is going thru my mind.     Can you imagine for the moment the  implication of filling your mind with music that is seductive, evil, and sensuous?   Can you imagine the result of filling your mind with pornography and the continuing result of thinking on promiscuity?    Long Ago John Milton said, "The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven." Just imagine what would happen if you filled your mind with Scripture and the lift it would bring in the course of a day’s events.
            Let's look at a practical application in terms of the press.
            In a survey in Vital Speeches in 1991 The Research Institute of Columbia University  surveyed 240 established journalists. "Although 23 percent were raised in a Jewish household only 14 percent claim to be of the Jewish faith.  One in five identifies himself as a Protestant, one in eight as a Catholic.  Only 8 percent  attend a church or a synagogue weekly; 86 percent never or rarely attend services."  Is it any wonder that the press ridiculed Kansas over the creation issue.  They never had the perception that the real issue is philosophy not science.   The challenge is great because the press, academia, other media, the government, is controlled in large part by secularists whose minds have not retained the knowledge of God.
            In this setting you are called upon to defend your faith, to advocate your faith, and share your faith with those who are interested..   " Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,  (1 Peter 3:15)   The reasons for the faith you have and the hope you have  are mental issues.   This is part of loving God with your mind....
            A dedicated mind is not alone.  I don't think it is legitimate to pray for an answer on the test for which you have not studied.  But Jesus has promised help in another way.  When you are faithful in your witness and consistent in your life, the Lord has promised help for the mind that is committed to Him.  He told his disciples, (Luke 21:14) " But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves.  For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict"   You will have the experience of not knowing what to say at those times, but God has promised help to your committed mind..   

 II   The Mind  and Natural Science

            I would like to turn in the direction of this second  concern.
 The interface  among philosophy, religion and science  is important. 
            1.  The first  issue I would mention  is  the area of presuppositions.   This is fundamental. Why are there  7 schools of psychology?    The presuppositions differ in them.   Take the writing of history, and you can point up different  iographies of Martin Luther.   There is a nationalist (German culture and language),   an   Anabaptist,    a Lutheran, a Catholic,  a Marxists,  and psychological biography  and they are written with different presuppositions.
            We must understand the nature of presuppositions.  They are assumptions we accept without question. They are foundational issues on which we build other thoughts.   

Type I.  Presuppositions basic to knowledge.

            1. I exist
            2. Other people exist
            3. Reciprocal communication can take place
            4.  Nature exists independent of the mind
            5.  Discourse depends upon forms of logic

Type II.  Attitudinal presuppositions necessary for continuing  development of science.

            1.  The desire to observe, organize, measure, and        experiment is vital to science.
            2.  The activities described in II.1, are of value and produce meaningful knowledge.
            3.  In the pursuit of discovery, men must make           choices and the choices determine the knowledge
                 he may or may not derive.
            4.  The scientific endeavor depends upon the integrity and honesty of the scientist.(There have been a number frauds in science and the latest concerns the issue of global warming in which a number of scientists have distorted data for their own purposes)

Type III.  Presuppositions concerning nature and methodology.

            1.   Nature is real, not an illusion.
            2.  There are orderliness and regularity in nature. (rejected by Islam)
            3.  Nature is understandable, and knowable.  (rejected by Islam)
            4.  Nature can be expressed in mathematical terms.  (ibid)
            5.  Measuring something gives us knowledge of that item.  (ibid)
            6.  Natural laws are not affected by time.

Type IV.  I-Believe Statements.

            1.  Space is infinite or finite.
            2.  The second law of thermodynamics is true when applied to a closed system, or it is not true.
            3.  The future is determined on a cause-effect model, or, it is not.32
            4.  The model of scientific expression is physics or, it is not.
            5.  All meaningful knowledge is a product of the scientific methods, and knowledge derived    without said methods is pseudo-knowledge, or there is meaningful knowledge to be had in    other ways than scientific methods.
            6.  I believe that evolution explains the origin of life, or, I believe it does not.
            7.  I believe that Vitamin C is the answer to the common cold, or I believe it does not.
            8.  I believe that cholesterol is the cause of  heart problems, or I believe it is not the cause.   

We can put together a parallel development of presuppositions in religion.   Consider the following

:Type I.  Presuppositions basic to all knowledge.  This type
            remains the same and the reader can refer back to
            that section on the presuppositions of science.


Type II.  Attitudinal presuppositions necessary for the continuing development of religion.

            1.  The desire to observe, organize, and conceptualize are also vital to religion.
            2.  The activities are of value and produce      meaningful knowledge.
            3.  Man must make choices, and these choices will    determine the knowledge he may or   may not derive.              
            4.  The survival of religion, like science, depends upon the integrity and honesty of its     people.
            5.  Here a difference emerges:  science measures, while religion is interested in worship      and prayer.

Type III.  Presuppositions about the nature of spirit.

            1. "The realm of the spirit . . . is real."
            2.  "The realm of the spirit exhibits orderliness, regularity, and cause and effect relations."
            3.  "The realm of the spirit is intelligible."
            4.  "The realm of the spirit is religiously explicable."
            5.  "When we worship we gain spiritual insight."
            6.  "God is real and can be known."
            7.  "God and the realm of the spirit are basically unchanging."

Type IV.  "I-Believe" statements.

            Following the model of Schilling as above, we can use the Apostle's Creed as an example of "I-believe" statements.  The first part of the creed may be used, not for its authoritativeness, but because it reflects in a nutshell many Biblical statements.

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of Heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ His only begotten Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary . . . .

The Apostle's Creed sets forth in summary fashion what is said in many places in the Biblical record.

            The Biblical record, however, points up the recorded account of what certain men had experienced.  That record declares in a very natural way,

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life--the life was made manifest, and we saw it, and testify to it, and proclaim to you the eternal life which was with the Father and was made manifest to us . . . . (l John l:l-2)

And the word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth; and we have beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father.  (John 1:14)

The disciples of Jesus had a unique experience.  They saw unusual events of men being healed of blindness, deafness, and being raised from death; they heard his teaching, they saw his crucifixion but most important, his resurrection.  He was seen alive on numerous occasions by numerous disciples under differing circumstances.  To all of this they bore witness, and the Apostle's Creed is nothing less than a summary of their experience as recorded in the Biblical record.  It does not represent dogmatic pronouncements borne of mere imagination, it represents their experience.

            Philosophy is not without its presuppositions.
            1.  One of the basic presuppositions for many philosophers is that science is the source of information about the world.  What science declares few philosophers would be willing to question.   This leads to a naturalistic assumption about the nature of science.  Science can tell us only what is observable about the world.  Is there a reality beyond the reality we see and know?   If it cannot be measured in some form, then it becomes a non-sense issue for many philosophers.   A world view based on naturalistic science is very narrow.  This philosophy undergirding science is that metaphysics is out.  No longer do we need to appeal to God, no longer can we think in terms of life after death, or any other thought that has been dear to many people through the centuries.
            But if you changed philosophies, science can take on a different dress.
One day a group of scientists got together and decided that man had come a long way and no longer needed God. So they picked one scientist to go and tell Him that they were done with Him. The scientist walked up to God and said, "God, we've decided that we no longer need you. We're to the point that we can clone people and do many miraculous things, so why don't you just go on and get lost."

God listened very patiently and kindly to the man. After the scientist was done talking, God said, "Very well, how about this? Let's say we have a man-making contest." To which the scientist
replied, "Okay, great!"
But God added, "Now, we're going to do this just like I did back in the old days with Adam."

The scientist said, "Sure, no problem" and bent down and grabbed himself a handful of dirt. God looked at him and said, "No, no, no. You go get your own dirt!"

            If you are not a naturalists, then  science  can incorporate  some interesting concepts that go beyond naturalism.   This can be seen in the work of   molecular biologists Michael Behe, in Darwin's Black Box.  Behe argues that the world in which we live is too complex to explain by blind chance and he was led to conclude  that  intelligent design is  more  rationally satisfying.        
            There have been philosophers who argued like Behe did a long time ago.  Edgar Brightman used the details of the eye  to  argue for intelligent design.  He could do this from the philosophical position of personal idealism.

When one takes into account the fact that the eye is a complex organ, that each part of it is adjusted to the function of the whole, and that the parts are useless except in combination, it is difficult to understand the result on a mechanistic basis.  If the developed eye is the outcome of gradual successive variations, there is no explanation of why the rudimentary variations would survive before all of the necessary variations had occurred in combination.  Or if it is the outcome of a sudden mutation, there is no explanation of why all the necessary parts should appear at once in mutual coordination.  On either horn of the dilemma, the similarity of structure and function in the two types of eye is an effect without an adequate cause, a mysterious miracle.  There is no explanation unless it is granted that there is at work in nature a power that is non-mechanistic and that realizes ends. (Brightman, Intro.to Philosophy, p. 235 )

A different philosophy   makes it possible to see different possibilities and explanations.

            2. A second comment relates to detecting specious reasoning.   Carl Sagan is said to have encouraged the use of a baloney kit.    The baloney kit is for the purpose of detecting  baloney in religion primarily and in reasoning in general.   One writer said, 'there is no better source to develop such a baloney kit than science.  I make sure my students get a heavy dose of it!"   This is written by a person who is an atheist teaching courses in religion.   He wrote that there was a great incongruity in a creationist teaching a biology course.  My reply was that the biologist and creationist have a lot in common. They both believe something is out there and life began and is.  They differ on how it came about, but they do not deny its existence.  This person teaching religion doesn't believe there is anything out there, and religion cannot be anything more than ethics, values, taboos, cultural rules.

            3. What counts for evidence?   Orthodoxy in science is powerful and the majority view on a topic carries weight sometimes beyond the evidence available.    There are many who do not want to transgress orthodoxy although they come close to it.  One example is that of  Paul Davies who marshals a lot of interesting information that would make  evolution origins impossible, but he does not directly confront the biological community in criticism.  
            It is important for many biologists to be united against the creationist even though there may be great division between themselves.  Consider the quote  from John Maynard Smith in writing about Gould at Harvard  vs.  Richard  Dawkins  at  Cambridge.  With regard to Gould he wrote:    " Because of the excellence of his essays, he has come to be seen by non-geologists as the preeminent evolutionary theorist.  In contrast, the evolutionary biologists with whom I have discussed his work tend to see him as a man whose ideas are so confused as to be hardly worth bothering with, but as one who should not be publicly criticized because he is at least on our side against the creationists." (John Maynard Smith, in a review of Darwin’s Dangerous Idea by Daniel Dennett, published in New York Times Review of Books, as cited by Andrew Brown, in The Darwin Wars: How Stupid Genes became selfish gods. (London: Simon and Schuster, 1999, p. 241)
            The evidence is something to be examined carefully.  For example, the leading Paleontologist of the last century (so close) G.G. Simpson wrote :
            “Some early Cambrian rocks  laid down about 500,000,000 years ago, are crowded with fossils. One place or another on earth there are also rich fossil deposits of almost all ages since the early Cambrian. But in rocks earlier than the Cambrian,  representing the great span of 1.5 billion years,  fossils are generally lacking, and even when present are rare and usually dubious.  The search for pre-Cambrian fossils has been intense and disheartening. Few possible traces have been found, and of those few many have later proved not to be organic or not to be pre-Cambrian." p.17 The Meaning of Evolution)
            In a discussion concerning the gaps in the orders of life, "This is true of  all the thirty-two orders of mammals...The earliest and most primitive known members of every order already have the basic ordinal characters, and in no case is an approximately continuous sequence from one order to another known.  In most cases the break is so sharp and the gap so large that the origin of the order is speculative and much disputed. (Simpson,  Tempo and Mode in Evolution, Columbia Univ. Press, New York:, p. 105, 1944)
            A few pages later, Simpson writes, "this regular absence of transitional form is not confined to mammals, but is an almost universal phenomenon, as has long been noted by paleontologists.  It is true of almost all orders of all classes of animals, both vertebrate and invertebrate.  A fortiori, it is also true of the classes, and of the major animal phyla, and it is apparently also true of analogous categories of plants.(Ibid.;.107)
            In spite of this admission  of 1.5 billion years from the beginning of life until the Cambrian, without any records,  Simpson assumes that life  evolved in a macro-evolutionary fashion.   This is the faith of an evolutionists.   We have to distinguish between faith and fact required by evidence.
            Viewing this issue from another perspective,  Davies, the  physicist,  raises questions and observes,  "It is hard to see how a molecule like RNA  or DNA, containing many thousands of carefully arranged atoms, could come into existence spontaneously if it was incapable, in the absence of proteins, of doing anything (in particular, of reproducing). But it is equally unlikely that nucleic acid and proteins came into existence by accident at the same time and fortuitously discovered an efficient symbiotic relationship.  The high degree of improbability of the formation of life by accidental molecular shuffling has been compared by Fred Hoyle to a whirlwind passing through an aircraft factory and blowing scattered components into a functioning  Boeing 747.  It is easy to estimate the odds against random permutations of molecules assembling DNA..  It is about l0=40,000 to one against.  That is the same as tossing a coin and achieving heads roughly 130,000 times in a row. (Davies, Are We Alone, 1995, p. 27)
            In another work Davies comments on  Darwinism, but does not renounce it,
"As we have seen, all  life involves cooperation between nucleic acids and proteins.  Nucleic acids carry  the genetic information, but they cannot on their own do anything.  They are chemically incompetent. The actual work is carried out by the proteins  with their remarkable catalytic abilities.  But the proteins are themselves assembled according to instructions carried by the nucleic acids...Even if a physical mechanism were discovered that could somehow  assemble a DNA molecule, it would be useless unless another mechanism simultaneously surrounded it with relevant proteins.  Yet it is hard to conceive that the complete interlocking system was produced spontaneously in a single step. (Davies, The Cosmic Blueprint, p. 116)
            A few pages later Davies, noted:  "It is possible to perform rough calculations of the
probability that the endless breakup and reforming of the soup's complex molecules would lead to a small virus after a billion years.  Such are the enormous number of different chemical combinations that the odds work out at over 10-2,000,000 to one against.  This mind numbing number is more than the chances against flipping heads  on a coin six million times in a row.  Changing from a virus to some hypothetical simpler replicator could improve the odds considerably, but with a number like this it doesn't change the conclusion:  the spontaneous generation of life by random molecular shuffling is a ludicrously improbable event."(Ibid. p.118)
            But having said all this,  Davies  does not renounce evolutionary theory.  Scientists are reluctant to criticize people in other disciplines.  
            However, looking at these different items  from Simpson and Davies,  what conclusions should be reach  and what counts for evidence.    Our philosophy must not impose  meaning on the evidence,  nor must our philosophy  be used to twist the evidence.
            There is another issue I would like to pose for your consideration.   We live in what some call the post-modern age.  To understand what the post-modern age is about we must look at the  ideas of  the "modern" age.
            Consider the following as descriptions of the modern age.
                 l. "There is a stable, coherent, knowable self.  This self is conscious, rational, autonomous, and universal.
                 2.  This self knows itself and the world through reason, or rationality, assumed to be the highest form of mental functioning, and the only objective form.
                 3. This mode of knowing produced by the objective rational self is "science," which can provide universal truths about the world, regardless of the individual status of the knower.
                 4. The knowledge produced by science is "truth" and is eternal.
                 5. The knowledge/truth produced by science (by the rational objective knowing self) will always lead toward progress and perfection.  All human institutions and practices can be analyzed by science (reason/objectivity) and improved.
                 6   Reason is the ultimate judge of what is true, and therefore of what is right, and what is good (what is legal and what is ethical). Freedom consists of obedience to the laws that conform to the knowledge discovered by reason.
                 7. In a world governed by reason, the true will always be the same as the good and the right (and the beautiful), there can be no conflict between what is true and what is right.
                 8. Science thus stands as the paradigm for any and all socially useful forms of knowledge.   Science is neutral and objective
                 9. Language, or the mode of expression used in producing and disseminating knowledge must be rational also.  To be rational, language must be transparent; it must function only to represent the real/perceivable world which the rational mind observes.  There must be a firm and objective connection between the objects of perception and the words used to name them.).
            Post-modernism  calls into question those grand stories  such as  the rise of democracy, or  Marxism,  and regards them as self-serving  and not really true.   Post-modernism  does not accept objective truth, but  truth is dependent upon the community one is in.   There is no absolute truth.  It denies the existence of a source of truth, morality, and intelligibility distinct from man.   The universe is not really intelligible  but is a human way of making order, not recognizing it.
            Every person interprets reality in accordance with his own subjective condition.
            If there is no objective truth,  or the search for unchanging truth, then the foundation of science  is at risk.  This attitude  will be far more devastating on science  than any religious criticisms.   
            As Christians there are some vital assumptions that we cannot dismiss or relativize.
            First,  we have to maintain the assumption of truth and the search for truth.  Truth is a Person, first of all, and a standard, secondly.   Without truth all philosophy and science is doomed to meaninglessness.     Sooner or later postmodernists will see their views as self-defeating.
            Second,  we must  maintain that the universe is intelligible.   Intelligibility leading to meaning.   The human race is searching for meaning.  It is searching in many of the wrong places, but there is a longing in the human heart for meaning and purpose in life.  Without it life is cheap and empty.  

            Meaning in life is the basis for dealing with life’s problems.  In Man’s Search for Meaning, by Victor Frankl,  he tells the story of a composer imprisoned in the concentration camp in Germany during World War 2.  It was in March of  1945 when the man approached Frankl and asked him if he would like to hear of his dream.  Frankl consented to listening.  “I dreamed that a voice said, “ask anything you want to know” and you know what I asked for, I asked for when the war would be over.”  The composer declared that the voice told him that the war would be over March 30.  After March 1 he endured all the hardships of the camp,  and  news of the war ending was coming close.  But on March 29 it was evident that the war would not be over and the man became ill with  a high fever, on March 30th, he became delirious and unconscious and on March 31 he died.  Frankl makes the point that as long as he had hope his body fought the latent typhus infection.  But when his hope was gone, he died.   If you have a why, you can endure any how.   What you think about is important for life.

The good life cannot be known without the mind, nor can it be attained with the mind. Man’s mind is a gift of God and is a reflection of God’s creativity. There is tremendous importance in Who you commit your mind to.  It is really a matter of life or death.    (2-16-12)