“To say of what is that it is, or of what is not that it is not, is true.”
What Are We Talking About & Why?
•A worldview that rejects the existence of absolute truth
•For reasons of morality. How ought one to live. Are there moral
absolutes and duties?
•Evangelism, how can we share the gospel in this culture?
•Theology, can we know anything about God?
•Church Hierarchy
•Access to Truth is Mediated by the Church
Cf. Postmodernism 101, 23-37
Sola Fide, Sola Scriptura
•The Role of Politics
Divine Rights  Scientific understanding of humanity
•The Role of Philosophy
Foundationalism [Descartes]
Faith in the power of reason is the central pillar of the
modern worldview.
•The Role of Science
The Copernican Revolution
Cf. Postmodernism 101, 23-37
“The Pale Blue Dot”
“Our posturings, our imagined selfimportance, the delusion that we
have some privileged position in
the Universe, are challenged by
this point of pale light. Our planet
is a lonely speck in the great
enveloping cosmic dark. In our
obscurity, in all this vastness, there
is no hint that help will come from
elsewhere to save us from
Carl Sagan, from a Public Lecture
delivered October 13, 1994, at
Cornell University
The Role of Science
Metaphysical Realism
1. The existence of a theory-independent or language
independent reality
2. The notion that there is one way the world really is
3. The notion that the basic laws of logic [identity, noncontradiction, excluded middle] apply to reality
Rejection of Absolutism
All thought is historically and socially conditioned.
A rejection of dichotomous thinking [there is no
objective truth, no God’s eye view of things].
Rationality & Knowledge
Rationality—objectivity is impossible
Knowledge—a construction of one’s social,
linguistic structures, not a justified, truthful
representation of reality by one’s mental states.
Postmoderns reject foundationalism and there is no
quest for epistemic certainty or justification. The quest
is misguided because people do not need certainty to
live their lives well.
Cf. Postmodernism 101, 30-31
Antiessentialism & Nominalism
There is no distinction between essential and
accidental properties
Being human is essential to Socrates
Being five feet tall is not essential to Socrates
Nothing is literally the same from one moment to the
next. There is a denial of universals, rather names for
groups of things.
The redness of an apple
Meaning, Interpretation, & Self
•Denial of authorial meaning
There is no book of Romans. Rather, there is a
Lutheran, Calvinist, Catholic, and Marxist book of
•The Self
Not an individual, a bundle of social roles
Cf. Postmodernism 101, 67-85, 87-101,
103-122 [also for reference to Language]
Puff, the magic dragon
Lived by the sea
And frolicked in the autumn mist
In a land called Honah Lee
Cf. Postmodernism 101, 150-154
The Problem of Historical Knowledge
•History is not objective
History is only reported from a bias perspective,
thus cannot be trusted as truly objective.
Winners write history.
Cf. Postmodernism 101, 139-156
What Does This Mean
for Christianity?
How Should Christians Respond?