Relativism Doesn’t Threaten Western Values-- Depending on Your Perspective
"In our time we can neither endure our faults nor the means of correcting them"
For many conservatives relativistic thinking is to blame for millennials going down the path to decline and decadence, leading concerned republicans to offer countless “refutations” of relativism in hopes that such arguments will succeed in changing millennials mind about religion.
But despite how often conservatives issue these attacks at this point it hardly seems likely “refuting” relativism is really swaying the hearts and minds of millennial youth.
So in other words it’s time for conservatives to get an upgrade in the world view department.
But first conservatives should understand the nature of their alleged “relativistic” enemy.
First conservatives need a stronger definition of what relativism is.
Relativism -- to put it plainly -- is the rejection of truth as absolute knowledge.
Which, to an extent, is a reasonable position to hold -- diverse thinkers such as David Hume, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Martin Luther have all rejected the possibility and/or necessity of absolute truth.
And yes, Martin Luther is a Christian theologian -- a very famous and well known one at that -- who denies “absolute truth” as it’s traditionally conceived. Alternatively he introduces the doctrine of sola fide -- or the idea of knowing God through “faith alone” into historical discourse.
In other words even Martin Luther doesn’t over emphasize the idea of absolute truth -- and yet it appears he makes a very compelling case for humans having a relationship with God despite the fundamentally “uncertain” nature of God existence or non-existence.
So according to Luther’s world-view humans can still find, extract, and make meaning in the universe even without the need for “absolute truth”.
On the other hand the more academic type of liberals often draw the opposite conclusion. They reason that if we can’t have certain knowledge about the world we inhabit, then no one can possibly pass any judgement about the meaning of life. Hence the reason members of the extreme left-wing feel compelled to slander life -- they have nothing nice to say about it since they lack even the faith to believe in the power of their own words.
What we’re ultimately left with -- on both sides of the political spectrum is this -- a non-need to discuss “absolute truth”.
So let this be said -- the power of faith always wins -- just as our power to uplift others becomes stronger as we continually uplift each other with kind words and even sharper criticism.