Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Living Your Epistemology

We had a fun time last week debating religious pluralism. I took it to be a self-refuting statement and came up with analogies focusing on Gavin's posterior. My central argument was the Law of Non-Contradiction -- that a thing cannot be both what it is and what it is not at the same time. Of this, Medieval Persian philosopher Avicenna wrote:

Anyone denies the law of non-contradiction, let him be beaten and burned. Until he admits that to be beaten is not the same as not to be beaten, and to be burned is not the same as not to be burned.

Heh! I like that. It points out that no one actually adheres to high postmodernist epistemology, all claims to the contrary. I've never heard a postmodernist say "Well, my truth is that I can fly" and then go jump off a cliff to prove it. They might be pomo about spiritual concerns, but never truly live as though all truth is subjective.

That's why I find the Chicken Little screams of "The world is becoming postmodern!" farfetched. People may be approaching theology and philosophy increasingly through pomo lenses (much of it to good effect), but until people can jump off cliffs and fly around, the world will never be postmodern.

13 comments:

MethoDeist said...

The Law of Non-Contradiction does indeed apply to the burning of a thing or the flying of people. However, it does not apply to theology on an objective level but only on a subjective level.

I do agree with you that the world is not becoming Post-modern but that PM is simply a tool used by both sides to gather troops and get people motivated on an issue. It is like the claim of moral relativism, this is used quite a bit but I have yet to meet a true moral relativist (thank God).

Post-Modernism is a myth in most aspects. As you stated, only the mentally insane would claim the ability to fly when flying without mechanical support is impossible.

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