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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Philosophy for Housewives: Part 2

He who teaches man knowledge—the Lord—knows the thoughts of man, that they are but a breath. (Ps 94:11)
Appropriating Truth

It’s human to grow larger in our own minds as we dwell on our ideas.  This is why we first need to establish a foundation.  There are a variety of truth diagrams out there; one of my favorites uses a tree analogy.  The roots represent truth, the trunk beliefs based on that truth, the branches emotions derived from belief, and the fruit our actions.  When you picture this direct path from belief to action, you can see that a person who believes truth is unknowable cannot hope for a rational output.  Without secure roots, you tend to begin your process with arbitrary emotion, and this becomes the primary informant of action.  Does that sound like a good idea to anyone?  If I consult what I believe to be the source of truth, I find that “ the way of a fool is right in his own eyes” (Prov 12:15).  Unless satisfying ourselves is our chief aim, this is a problematic approach to life.
So instead…appropriate ideas liberally!  God never intended us to choose and act indiscriminately, without guidance.  Tether your emotions, and therefore your actions, to something sturdy, against which you can weigh whatever ideas the world throws at you.  Because the world is a dangerous place for the undiscerning. 
See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. (Colossians 2:8)

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