How An Inaccurate Worldview Self Destructs

Posted: January 9, 2015 in Blog Post
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Having the right worldview matters, because it will affect the way we see the world, ourselves, other people, and life itself.  Every single person has a worldview, and no worldview is neutral. Not all worldviews can be true either, as they all contradict each other at critical points. They might all be false, but can’t all be true.

In this post, my hope is to break down some very common problems that are always present when someone is holding an inaccurate worldview.

Accurate worldviews require two very important elements that must answer the “big questions” such as, Where did we come from? Why are we here? Why are things so messed up? How will they get fixed? And they must answer them coherently. There cannot be a contradiction between two or more answers.

When a person holds an inaccurate worldview, they will be forced to steal from other worldviews to explain their own. When this happens, it will create a contradiction. It’s like trying to connect Lego and Mega Bloks to build a house – the pieces don’t fit, so the house will come crashing down. This is what needs to be pointed out. Let’s look at two examples.

Contradiction 1:

Human existence is the result of solely physical processes (atheism).

Human beings make rational decisions and have free will (Christian theism).

In a naturalistic/atheistic worldview, this is a huge problem. Most naturalists/atheists believe they have free will, and that they arrived at their beliefs based on rational thought. In other words, they think they examined the evidence, and came to a conclusion on their own as to whether God exists or not. If one were a consistent atheist however, they would have to say, as many do, that humans are nothing more than highly evolved monkeys. Furthermore, they came to be highly evolved monkeys through an extremely long combination of biological and chemical processes, all of which are solely physical. We are meat all the way down. It seems to me that in this worldview, our thoughts would not really be rational at all. They are rather just the end result of our own personal evolution. I like using the idea of a line of dominoes to illustrate this. The last domino falls, not because it chose to fall, but rather because it was forced by all the others before it.

In human terms then, I would be a Christian, simply because I evolved into the kind of person who would accept Christianity. Similarly, atheists would only deny God’s existence because that is the way they evolved. There is no choice involved! We would not be reasoning – just simply reacting.  It could easily have gone the other way. It makes no sense to say we arrived at our beliefs based on rational thought, when physical processes are really to blame. But despite this, many people will claim they are rational creatures with free will, while holding a worldview that rejects such a concept at its core. The Christian worldview is consistent with free will and rationality. Naturalism/atheism is not.

Contradiction 2: There is no objective morality. Our beliefs about morality are a product of our evolution. We have no right to tell other people what is right or wrong ( a.k.a. Relativism – knowledge, truth, and morality are not absolute).

We were right to stop the Nazis and end slavery, and we are wrong to condemn abortion etc. (a.k.a. Objectivism – the belief that certain things, especially moral truths, exist independently of human knowledge or perception of them).

When a person tries to force these two concepts into the same worldview, an immediate contradiction happens. This one is so common, it’s almost nauseating. At least for me. But then again, I have a sensitive stomach. Anyways….

The story often goes, that a long time ago, little groups of evolved monkeys started making rules around what they didn’t like – things like murder, rape, theft, etc. – and we eventually ended up with the values we have now. This is supposedly why other cultures believe differently than we do when it comes to morality. The problem here is that in this view, there is no real right and wrong – just right and wrong for you, or maybe your culture. Despite this fact, people who believe this is the way reality is structured, will get really upset when another person does something truly evil.

It is a contradiction that a person would say on one hand, that our morality is a product of our evolution, and on the other hand that everyone else should respect what they believe to be right and wrong. Even values like tolerance, [it is good to be tolerant of other people’s views] does not make sense in this case. If something is objectively good or evil – regardless of what anyone believes – then it could not be the product of evolution. Evolution won’t bring us to that conclusion. What it will get us is different groups of humans with different DNA, who might disagree on whether it is wrong to torture babies for fun, and there is nothing that one group can say to condemn the other. As popular atheist Richard Dawkins famously stated in his book River Out of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life

“DNA neither cares nor knows. DNA just is. And we dance to its music.”

It should be obvious that this does not explain reality well. Do we really think that the Nazis were actually justified in doing all the horrible things they did, simply because they evolved differently than we did in the west? Do we think that the Allied forces were wrong for forcing their morality on the Nazi’s? Of course not. We know that what the Nazi’s did was evil, regardless of whether anyone in Germany or anywhere else thought it was good. We don’t say, “Those Nazis had to be stopped because they had different DNA that our DNA doesn’t agree with.” We stopped them because slaughtering Jews, experimenting on babies and children, and enslaving people based on their ethnicity is evil – ALL THE TIME! Evolution does not do a good job of explaining why these things would be evil for everyone.

If a person wants to claim all morality is the product of evolution, then they cannot say there is a real right and wrong. People make this mistake all the time. They will claim there is no objective morality when they want to justify their own desires or activities. Then in the next breath they will say it is objectively wrong for people to pass judgement on what their desires or activities may be. They have to steal objective morality from a theistic worldview, because it doesn’t exist in their own. But these two values are incoherent. They cannot exist in the same worldview, at the same time. Either there are objective moral values, and humans are obligated to follow them; or there is no objective morality, and we are not obligated to care what other people think or feel or do, if it differs from our own beliefs. It’s one or the other, but not both. Objective morality is consistent with Christianity, not with naturalism/atheism.

In the above contradictions, we see how to have an accurate worldview; it must be coherent, with no contradictions regarding the big questions in life. If a person has to steal from another worldview to defend their own, then their view is almost certainly false.

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Comments
  1. Manuel says:

    Very relevant topic and well supported. Thank you for helping us the readers to have a clear knowledge and understanding of the right worldview.

    Like

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