Everyone has one, even if they don't know it! So what is a worldview anyway? Basically, it is how you view and understand the world and all of your experiences. How you see truth, reality, morality, humanity, and God helps to define your worldview. Knowing what you believe, and why, is essential to living a fulfilled life.
But is your worldview valid? A valid worldview must
- Be logically consistent
- Be balanced (not too simple or complex)
- Provide explanatory power and scope
- Correspond to well-established facts
- Be verifiable (truth claims can be verified or falsified)
- Be applicable to real life
- Fill our existential needs
- Provide a cumulative and comprehensive approach
- Compete in the marketplace of ideas
There are several principle worldviews, each with many variations. These include:
- Naturalism / Scientism (secular - generally atheistic or agnostic)
- Pantheistic Monism (Hindu, New Age, eastern religions)
- Theism (Christian)
- Theism (Jewish, Islam, other)
- Postmodernism (skeptical)
Each one has strengths and weaknesses. In subsequent posts I plan on looking at each of these. Together we'll evaluate them with the tests listed about and see how they stack up.
As Kierkegaard once said, a satisfactory worldview should “give us a reason to live and a reason to die.” Does yours?
Note: I borrowed much of this from Ken Samples' book, A World of Difference. I would highly recommend this book, since it goes into far more detail about each of these worldviews. He also has an introductory podcast: What in the World is a Worldview?