Reflection about Worldview

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The Christian Perspective of the Nature of Spirituality and Ethics in contrast to the Perspective of Postmodern Relativism within Healthcare

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Richard (2000) constructs that healthcare has grown and it is being developed by Christian spiritual and ethical practices. In that, the Christian perspective inspires the values and standards of care and on this basis, every stakeholder in the healthcare industry has developed an interest in Christianity (Richard, 2000). According to Richard (2000), ethics has its roots in spirituality and healthcare workers employ both to build their individual character and to provide patient care that is not harmful to patients. Christian spirituality enables healthcare workers to find the meaning of the care they give to others and its worthiness in their lives. From the Christian perspective, giving care to others is an expression of love for God. Thus, spirituality helps people to be good, make God’s love become a reality and employ it in changing the world to become a moral society (Richard, 2000).

Nevertheless, the healthcare system is failing in its expression for God’s love because- it has become expensive, is not easily accessible to many, and it fails to provide holistic care (Salladay, n.d.). Such an outcome supports the ideology of postmodernism that emphasizes that nothing has a certain reality and truth (Forghani, Keshtiaray, and Yousefy, 2015). However, using a constructivist approach, objective reality and truth exist in which people can relate to, to lead a meaningful life (Ferdinand and Johannes, 2015). In this regard, modernism is helping people to fill in the value gap that postmodernism creates with values they find from other different cultures (Ferdinand and Johannes, 2015; Pecorino, n.d.). In healthcare, people now prefer alternative forms of medicine that are different from Christian spirituality and ethics. More so, because these forms of medicine vary from one culture to another, people are now adopting new values that are different from the Christian perspective (Salladay, n.d. Pecorino, n.d.).

Scientism

From the scientists’ perspective, scientism is genuine knowledge about reality and this makes it superior to the knowledge that people can have in other disciplines (Moreland, 2018). In this regard, only science has the authority to answer any question about reality and to make known anything about reality (Law, 2016). 

Scholars in other disciplines object scientism. Burnett (2019) argues that when compared to other cultural disciplines, science has been wrongly put too high than them. Even though science uses explanations, discoveries, and interventions to bridge knowledge gaps, Ani (2016) and Burnett (2019) refute that science is the only way of knowing about reality. To understand reality, knowledge from other disciplines is required (Ani, 2016; Burnett, 2019). One reason that Ani (2016) disputes, is that science simplifies reality as something that can be quantified. That is said to imply that science is only applied to explain a quantifiable substance and therefore it is limited to give knowledge about reality entirely. Another reason that limits science is that science cannot generalize everything and be able to make predictions (Ani, 2016). That is because, it is not practical to verify universal propositions, and in this regard, science only makes approximations (Ani, 2016). In these two scenarios, science needs the knowledge from other disciplines to explain reality (Burnett, 2019). For example, some religious beliefs give hope that the sun may rise again tomorrow as it has usually been doing (Ani, 2016). Besides, science also makes use of assumptions when making observations and making predictions (Ani, 2016).

Personal Perspective and Worldview of

  1. What ultimate reality is

From my perspective, I would argue that people mostly mention the term ‘reality’ when they undergo harsh experiences. The harsh experiences are those that emerge because of defaulting to observe important conditions that exist and people cannot control them. Therefore, people fear reality and they express this by choosing to follow the systematic way of doing things at the right time as they grow up. Reality is the situation, which has made human society live by expectations. That is, people have accepted reality and by doing so; they place certain expectations at different stages of their lives. From my understanding, it is commonly believed that no human being can change life’s reality but only God because; He created them and designed their way of living. More so, He changes life’s reality according to His Will. Nevertheless, in human society, there are those leaders that abuse their position to oppress their subordinates. In this case, these subordinates face realities that their leaders have designed and imposed on them to observe. In light of this, the ultimate reality is what a supreme authority creates, designs, and imposes on its subordinates who have no power to change. 

From the world’s view, the ultimate reality is what exists without the help of humans. From a religious perspective, some believe that that there is a Supreme Designer of reality. Scientifically, people cannot explain what reality is (AllAboutPhilosophy.org, 2019).

(b) What the nature of the universe is

From my observations, the universe is part of what a human being develops knowledge about following what he/she observes and taught as he/she grows up. The desire to learn more about the universe is what has caused several researchers to conduct studies in foreign environments to understand their nature and to attempt to understand their purpose and how they affect human life. Nevertheless, the universe is too big to be covered and human beings are limited to examine and understand it entirely (Sabbagh, 2019). Biblically, God is the creator of the universe and he created certain natural systems in it that support life on earth. In light of this, the nature of the universe is what is affected by human activities and as a result, natural systems have been weakened to support life on planet Earth. From the world’s view, the nature of the universe is self-evolving but which is affected by human activities (Sabbagh, 2019).

(c) What a human being is

 A human being is a creature created by God to take care of His creation. Therefore, a human being is different from other animals. Animals and plants depend on human beings to survive and for a human to be able to take care of God’s creation, he needs to learn about each creation and have knowledge about what it needs to survive. On the other hand, human beings are supposed to take care of God’s creation for the creation to support human life. That means a human being is a creature that is supposed to make a living from all other things that God has created and failure to take care of them he struggles to live. Therefore, God expects a human being to be a hard worker and a faithful one but in reality, a human being is a creature that lacks patience, wants to have more by doing less, and wants to do things for selfish gains. As a result, a human being is a creature that has failed God. More so, God sees human beings as those that are disobedient and those that also suffer from lack of knowledge. 

From the world’s view, as BioLogos (2019) writes, a human being is a creature that evolved from the apes and is different from them in terms of thinking. Therefore, man is a creature that has continued to gain more knowledge to make life easier for himself here on earth (Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, 2019).  

(d) What knowledge is

Knowledge is what human beings need to understand things affecting their lives and make informed decisions. Knowledge is what humans need to live a better life socially, economically, politically, and culturally. Besides, knowledge is what humans struggle to find and that is what makes them remain inquisitive and always being in need to achieve more. However, human beings can make wrong use of knowledge to make unethical acts. In this regard, knowledge is what is useful to ethical and moral people but a source of a societal problem when developed in unethical people (Henriques, 2013). 

(e) What is my basis of ethics is

 Ethics is what governs human behavior. In a society, certain behaviors are acceptable and others that are not acceptable. Therefore, what governs my behavior is the set of rules that the society I identify with has formed to distinguish between acceptable and unacceptable behaviors. I identify myself with the Christian society where the Ten Commandments are employed to govern human behavior. As a country, some laws also borrow from Biblical teachings to control human behavior and the same goes for workplace laws, school laws, and rules at home. From the world’s view, people are forming societies that conform to behaviors that they think should be universally recognized and are pushing to have these societies legalized (AllAboutPhilosophy.org, 2019). 

(f) What the purpose of my existence is

Mine is Biblical. Christians believe that God has placed every human being here on earth with a purpose and once a person accomplishes his/hers, God takes him/her. God has given people unique talents, which helps each one of them to fulfill their purpose. In this regard, the purpose of my existence is associated with the capabilities I have to make the world better than I found it just as God requires of me. I also understand that my purpose of existence is not the same as any other person’s purpose and because of this, God will ask me if I have achieved the purpose of my existence here on earth. From the world’s view, people misuse their talents to meet selfish interests and doing what God requires is perceived is ignored (United Church of God, n.d.). 

References

AllAboutPhilosophy.org (2019). Ultimate reality. Retrieved from < https://www.allaboutphilosophy.org/ultimate-reality-faq.htm>.

Ani, N. C. (2016). Does scientism undermine other forms of knowledge? Verbum et Ecclesia, 37(1). Retrieved from < http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2074-77052016000100053>.

BioLogos (2019). How could humans have evolved and still be in the image of God? Retrieved from < https://biologos.org/common-questions/how-could-humans-have-evolved-and-still-be-in-the-image-of-god/>.

Burnett, T. (2019). What is scientism? Retrieved from < https://www.aaas.org/programs/dialogue-science-ethics-and-religion/what-scientism>.

Ferdinand, P. and Johannes, V. W. (2015). Postmodern relativism and the challenge to overcome the “value-vacuum”. Stellenbosch Theological Journal, 1(1), 235-254. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.15770/stj.2015.v1n1.a12.

Forghani, N., Keshtiaray, N., and Yousefy, A. (2015). A critical examination of postmodernism based on religious and moral values education. International Education Studies, 8(9), 98-106.

Henriques, G. (2013). What is knowledge? A brief primer. Retrieved from < https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/theory-knowledge/201312/what-is-knowledge-brief-primer>.

Law, S. (2016). Scientism, the limits of science, and religion. Retrieved from< https://centerforinquiry.org/blog/scientism_the_limits_of_science_and_religion/>.

Moreland, J. P. (2018). What is scientism? Retrieved from < https://www.crossway.org/articles/what-is-scientism/>.

Pecorino, P. A. (n.d.). Chapter 8: Ethics. Retrieved from < http://www.qcc.cuny.edu/SocialSciences/ppecorino/INTRO_TEXT/Chapter%208%20Ethics/PostModernism.htm>.

Richard, M. (2000). Spirituality and ethics in healthcare. Retrieved from < https://www.chausa.org/docs/default-source/health-progress/spirituality-and-ethics-in-healthcare-pdf.pdf?sfvrsn=0>.

Sabbagh, K. (2019). The human brain and its products are incapable of understanding the truths about the universe. Retrieved from< https://www.edge.org/response-detail/10848>.

Salladay, S. A. (n.d.). Healing is believing: Postmodernism impacts nursing. Scientific Review of Alternative Medicine, 4(1). Retrieved from < https://archives.centerforinquiry.org/sram/healing-is-believing-postmodernism-impacts-nursing/>.

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (2019). What does it mean to be human? Retrieved from /broader-social-impacts-committee/science-religion-evolution-and-creationism-primer“>http://humanorigins.si.edu/about/broader-social-impacts-committee/science-religion-evolution-and-creationism-primer.United Church of God (n.d.). God’s purpose for mankind. Retrieved from < https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/fundamental-beliefs-of-the-united-church-of-god/gods-purpose-for-mankind>.

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