World Views

Pragmatism

Pragmatism is more concerned with what 'works' than with what's true.

In the absence of objective truth, how are we to decide which of two possible actions is preferable? The answer is provided by the only philosophical system made in America: pragmatism which maintains that the value of ideas is determined by their consequences.

Developed by the 19th-century American philosophers Charles Sanders Peirce, William James, and others, this philosophical doctrine holds that the test of the truth of a proposition is its practical utility; the purpose of thought is to guide action; and the effect of an idea is more important than its origin. It asserts that truth is relative to the time, place, and purpose of investigation and that value is as inherent in means as in ends. (Microsoft Encarta 97 Encyclopedia. (c) 1993-1996 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.)

Today, without a moral compass to gauge direction, "Does it work?" has replaced "Is it right?" as the question to ask in business decisions and lifestyle choice. If it works for you, then go right ahead. Thus, the only question about abortion is whether the pregnancy is "wanted". If not, then flush it away. Is your marriage working? If not, then get out of it. Will an inside deal profit your business? If so, go right ahead. The 1960s adage, "If it feels good, do it," has been updated for the 1990s: "If it works, do it." (Charles Colson, The Body, pg. 180.)



The Major World Views

Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you. - Acts 17:22-23


World Views
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