… if there are no absolute truths
A democratic society defines per majority the rules that govern the interaction of private persons and collective groups living in it. About what today is the accepted status quo future generations will perhaps just shake their heads despairingly. The continuing increase of information does not necessary lead to better laws. The history whizz-kids among us will know that over the course of the last 3,000 years progressive and regressive phases have alternated. In the same way the German populous, which many call the “Nation of poets, thinkers and composers”, is also responsible for committing the worst atrocities ever written down in historical annals. The Holocaust happened centuries after Martin Luther, Hegel, Kant und Lessing left their marks on society as a whole.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the French philosopher, wrote in the 18th Century: “If there were a nation of gods, it would be governed democratically!” As we all know, none of us can claim to be divine.
Most of us want a long, peaceful and prosperous life without suffering or bureaucratic hurdles. Our sense of solidarity and responsibility reaches its limits when it comes up face to face with our selfishness, our sluggishness and our self-denial. We have heard umpteen times that cheap is cool and we are all in it for the fun of it.
If you ask the question what is the point of this life and whether it extends beyond this visible world, you often see blank facial expressions or shoulders being shrugged. “Let us eat and drink today, since tomorrow we are dead,” is how the Book of all books describes this maxim, which has been an accepted modus Vivendi for one’s private lifestyle for all times.
The new atheists tell us that there is no absolute truth. As random products of a blind evolution, in which the strongest get their way we lack an authoritative foundation for ethical standards. Appearances and reality are eons apart. When the lights have gone out and no one is watching, I can do what I like. And why not? On life’s beach everything is permissible.
The “Marriage for All” can proudly proclaim that it has passed the 50% threshold in German society long ago. Why should gays and lesbians not adopt children that surrogate mothers or orphanages offer them? Who has proved that adolescents growing up with same sex parents do not thrive? The Gender-Theory proponents state that the “father-mother-child” family set up is just one of several possible family units.
It is very annoying that the world bestseller says something else. The thick black book claims that we are created beings and that the “father-mother-child” family is a necessary part of this creation. Sexual mores are by no means arbitrary. But we humans have the choice to choose or to reject God’s plan and then also to live with the consequences of our actions, since “what a man sows, he will reap.” Perhaps not immediately, but surely one day.
What a cheek! Laws, commandments and living in awe before God are not our cup of tea. Religious paternalism just does not fit with our postmodern individualism. If you removed God as indirect author of the Bible, it is one book among many, notwithstanding its phenomenal sales figures. Its 40 writers, surely wise human beings, are only 40 voices in the societal force field flooded by manifold opinions.
As for myself, I am thankful that my mother gave birth to me 56 years ago, that she nursed me and held me in her arms. My father impersonated attributes that we normally associate with men: prudent, faithful, hardworking, focused and humorous. I am thankful that I had my parents and was not adopted by a gay couple. If I had, I probably would not have become a missionary doctor in Peru.
The Apostles’ Creed states: “He will come to judge the living and the dead.” That sounds suspiciously like an absolute truth. If someone has the authority to judge, it implies that there is a right and a wrong and an up there and a down there. If “Marriage for All” will survive this fire test remains to be seen. /KDJ
(Picture above: Family John in 1963. I am the little boy in the middle sitting on my mother’s lap)