Many Voices   Leave a comment

The spirit of the world today calls in many voices.

Philosophy sings that we should give up hope of absolutes and universals and place our trust in synthesis or else live our lives in cognitive dissonance segregating reason from faith, value and true meaning.

Art — mostly — reflects this. From the Renaissance to the Enlightenment, art was Duchamp - Nude Descending a Staircase.jpghumanistic. Consider Michelangelo’s statues boldly placing the human form on display (and, yes, the full frontal was a deliberate choice on my part).

Today, however, man is diminished in art, fragmented, distorted. Reality itself is rarely represented. The message is that everything is in flux. There is no truth or objective reality.

Francis Schaeffer decried the music of the modern era — using John Cage as an example, but Schaeffer never knew Hearts of Space and ambient electronica. I once was writing while the radio was on. When the sound became distorted and incomprehensible, I was so into my writing that I left it on for two hours, using it as white noise. Imagine my surprise when Steven Hill informed me that I’d been listen to actual “atmospheric music” with a composer’s name attached. It had sounded like an air conditioning unit to me.

Sadly, theology has joined the zeitgeist. Scripture is up for interpretation and it can mean anything — or nothing. As long as you feel good about the message you’ve assembled from the scraps you accept, it doesn’t really matter.

So we are told ….

Of course, the real battle is for our minds — our thought lives. Whether we listen to the music or enjoy the art is not where we rise or fall, but whether we are resisting the world-spirit in our thought lives.

“Be transformed by the renewing of your mind,” the apostle Paul wrote.

If we’re not going to get the world’s muck on us, the first order of business is to resist the world’s way of thinking in our own minds.

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