Daily Riches: God’s Unanswerable Argument (John Boswel, Jonathan Haidt, and Baruch Spinoza)

  . “I have striven not to laugh at human actions,
not to weep at them,
not to hate them,
but to understand them.”
Baruch Spinoza

“You can’t use reason to argue someone out of a position he didn’t get into by reason. …There are, on the other hand, ways to communicate and enlighten not dependent on mere information that can overcome deeply embedded prejudices better than argument. A life can be an argument; being can be a reason. An idea can be embodied in a person, and in human form it may break down barriers and soften hardness of heart that words could not. This is, at least in part, what John the Evangelist means when he refers to Christ as logos. Although translators often render it as ‘word,’ it is much more than that. It is Greek for ‘reason’ and ‘argument’: our word for ‘logic’ comes from it. Christ was God’s unanswerable ‘argument.’ His people had hardened their hearts against his spoken reasons, the arguments propounded – in words – for centuries by prophets and sages. So he sent an argument in the form of a human being, a life, a person. The argument became flesh and blood: so real that no one could refute or ignore it.”  John Boswell

“The first principle of moral psychology [is that] Intuitions come first, strategic reasoning second. To  explain this principle I used the metaphor of the mind as a rider (reasoning) on an elephant (intuition) and I said that the rider’s function is to serve the elephant. Reasoning matters, particularly because reasons do sometimes influence other people, but most of the action in moral psychology is in the intuitions. …We humans have an extraordinary ability to care about things beyond ourselves, to circle around those things with other people, and in the process to bind ourselves into teams that can pursue larger projects. That what religion is all about … it’s what politics is about too. [But] …team membership blinds people to the motives and morals of their opponents – and to the wisdom that is to be found scattered among diverse political ideologies.” Jonathan Haidt

“Then the owner of the vineyard said,
‘What shall I do? I will send my son, whom I love;
perhaps they will respect him.’”
Jesus in Luke 20:13

 Moving From Head to Heart

  • Do you depend heavily on “information” and “strategic reasoning” to persuade others?
  • Is your life a persuasive “argument” for the views you hold?
  • Does your sense of your own rightness blind you “to the motives and morals of your opponents?”

Abba, help me live a life for you that is hard to dismiss or ignore.

For More: The Righteous Mind by Jonathan Haidt


Thanks for following and sharing my blog. I appreciate it!  –  Bill

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