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Naming elephant and worldview

13 Sep

Deceased in February last year, American and Christian philosopher James W. Sire (1933-2018) did extensive research behind the worldview issue, said it took 30 years, published in 2004, probably to begin to address the theme in 1974.

Also his worldview must be reread, I mean that from 1974 to 2004 the world underwent transformations that it deepened, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the end of the cold war that now seems to be reborn, the fall of dictatorships that seem to come back in all over the planet.

I have not read the book, but one of the book’s chapters and also its commentators have helped formulate an idea, though inaccurate, of his main book Naming the Elephant: Worldview as a Concept, publisher IVP Academic), and the chapter I refer to is the Definitions of Worldview: from Dilthey to Naugle, which in the title is suggestive of some idealism which the text confirms early on, is available on google Books.

It says at the beginning of Chapter 2 that the origin of the term Weltanschauung originated with Kant (1724-1804), “but only in passing,” and quotes Dilthey verbatim: “to denote a set of beliefs that underlie and shape all human thought and action.” ”(Sire, 2004, p. 23), denoting a set of beliefs that underpin and shape all human thought and action.

Although appropriate, perhaps the most thorough analysis of the term, Heidegger’s reading which updated and developed the subject in a broader sense than that of Kant and Dilthey is lacking, and Hans Georg Gadamer will rightly criticize Dilthey’s conception of the idealist.

To follow the concept of Weltanschauung Cites Nietszche, Wittgenstein, with tours of Plato and Descartes, Foucault and passing Rorthy art, and then begins to address evangelical Christian authors (Reformed is the name abroad), James Orr, Abraham Kuyper , Herman Dooyeweerd, Ronald Nash until he comes to what he calls the new synthesis that would be David Naugle.

However, never runs away from idealism, says he goes from ontology to hermeneutics (not the other way around) and says that this synthetic view is characterized by a “system”. semiotic of narrative signs ”(Sire, 2004, p. 42) quoting Naugle who made such a synthesis. However, the true synthesis hidden behind the text, with a clear nominalist view and the idea of ​​a semiotic system, reveals itself by quoting the biblical text: “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe me also, referring to the biblical passage in John 14: 1, because you then ignore the text that says, “In my father’s house are many mansions.”

The idea of ​​signs, myths and symbols embedded in narratives that represent a worldview is not negligible, and it is even important, however any view that is solely about narrative does not do the work of removing the anthropological view and the real “historical view”.  Of what happened, being the idealist and unreal vision of Dilthey’s historicism.

There is another more significant passage, the so-called return of the prodigal son (Luke 15:10: 32), which some idealistic authors and exegetes dislike the name, seeking to idolize the eldest son who stayed at home with his father, who is more conservative. therefore, but also his prodigal son, his defect, went to the world to experiment.

The fact that he returned is commendable, but what a worldview he brought from his deviance, in fact their father is merciful to his conservative and rebel. 

 

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