Reading through this week’s book, A Brief Guide To Ideas By Raeper and Edwards I was reminded of two things. First, it left me in awe of God’s sovereignty. This book is a brief walk through the history of thought from the Ancient Greeks to today. This walk left me in awe in the sense that it once again points out that humanity was created with the capacity to do good and to think things through, but unfortunately in our thought process we marginalize God, who should be at the center of it all, and yet He continues to walk along side humanity no matter how beautiful or depraved her thoughts are. I am in awe of a God who knows our thoughts and yet chooses to be in relationship with us. He knows and yet… wow!
The book mentions (p36) that in the 1200’s there was a shift in the center of studies. It moved from monasteries to universities. My second thought is this; I wonder what the world would look like if the centers of study remained in the monasteries and churches rather then have them moved into universities and learning centers. At one time things were taught by religious leaders, through a religious lens but now it’s in the hands of scholars with specific but often gospel contradicting agendas. I’m not saying that the religious leaders were always right… or even that this was the right way to do this, I just wonder how this small shift changed the way that we think and live and pay for our education.
This book also reminded me of some great thinkers that I have yet to read read, or haven’t read in a while. It caused me to pick up some of Kierkegaard’s writings and was reminded of the richness and depth of his thinking.
From Plato to Thomas Aquinas, from Luther to Bonhoeffer, things changed but people continue to struggle with the same things… the human condition has pretty much remained the same for the most part, with the exception of an even deeper selfishness and quest for personal satisfaction at all cost.
Reading this book reminded me of the book of Ecclesiastes… the more things change the more they stay the same. Ideas and thoughts might be wrapped in new packaging, but at the end of the day, humanity struggles with the same old questions. Isn’t it fascinating?