In 250-300 words, explain the Christian perspective of the nature of spirituality and ethics in contrast to the perspective of postmodern relativism within health care.
In Christianity, the ethical and spiritual perspectives are guided by religious guidelines. Spirituality is gained through religious practices and appeasing God through numerous good deeds. God is the eternal and the most powerful being in existence who knows all and sees all. Christians try to gain spirituality by studying Bible and implanting the teaching in their lives so that they may gain the favor of God. In Bible, they learn about the reason human beings were created, their life’s purpose, and their role in other people’s lives. Bible serves as a guide for them to achieve transcendence and pursue their dreams through the guidance of God. This allows them to remain on the right path while performing their earthly duties. It also allows them to accept different situations that they may experience in their lives as the will of God, however; they also believe that through praying to God they can solve all their problems through miracles. This can be difficult for the healthcare providers as religious believers may take decisions based on their beliefs and reject treatment due to their belief that God solves all. Another problem can be that the care provider might not be religious. In this case, postmodern relativism proves to be helpful as it provides a more open-minded view of spirituality as it believes that there is no such thing as absolute truth. This point-of-view can help understand the different worldviews of different individuals. This proves to be beneficial in a healthcare system even more as it represents diversity and does not disregard any viewpoint or belief. This acceptance of diversity allows for the medical professionals to in developing the capability of managing different views without bringing their own beliefs into the mix (Bogue & Hogan, 2020).
In 250-300 words, explain what scientism is and describe two of the main arguments
Scientism is the opinion that the only way to gain an understanding of reality is through the facts presented by science (Burnett, 2012). This makes sense as science provides evidence to back up a claim and not just follow an ambiguous belief. It only believes in something if it is proved through extensive research, however; there are many arguments against scientism that believe that not everything is explainable and some of the elements require faith, like; the existence of God. To understand the claims of scientism it is necessary to know that scientism is not science, it is in fact, a philosophy that believes that if something cannot be proven through science then it does not exist. However; these claims are false for two reasons, the first being that science has its limits and the second is that it is a self-refuting philosophy.
Science has indeed helped in gaining an understanding of the world, however; it also faces new limits that it needs to overcome in every age. For every challenge that it overcomes there are more challenges that it needs to face so the things that cannot be proven now may be proven in the future when there is better technology available. So claiming that only science can help us in understanding the world is not completely true as it cannot prove everything as it has its limits. Some answers can only be answered through philosophical ideas as life is more complex not everything can be answered through science. The second reason that scientism is false is since it claims to be a philosophical idea and yet it negates all philosophies including itself. It invalidates itself as well, by contradicting itself. It is like claiming that one cannot speak English while speaking in English.
What is ultimate reality?
The ultimate reality is a belief that everything and every living thing is a consequence of its interaction with its environment. This means that the environment, family, neighbors, community, ethnicity, etc. everything determines the way a person will turn out to be. All the environmental factors have influenced the development of every individual that has come before us and the ones that will come after us. Our actions will shape up their personalities and realities. For example, if a group of people is atheists then they will not believe in the paranormal as much as a family of Christians as devils and demons are part of their faith. Similarly, in ancient times people believed that the sun revolved around the earth but now everyone knows that it is the other way around. In this way, people’s beliefs, expectations, and decisions all shape up the ultimate reality. It is the interaction of people with the things around them and their perception of these things that makes up their ultimate reality.
What is the nature of the universe?
It is in the universe’s nature to experience change all the time and it has been experiencing change from the beginning of time. It is a vast expanse of heavenly bodies in which some have been discovered and many are yet to be discovered. It relies on its ever-changing nature to propel different instances which include survival of the fittest, extinction, evolution, and growth of different entities. During the survival of the fittest, different species fought over the resources while the weaker species died out and went extinct. Then natural calamities wiped out more species while the surviving species evolved, adapted, and thrived. Human beings are one of those species that have evolved and now stand at the top of the food chain but it may not be this way as the universe is always changing.
What is a human being?
There are two definitions of “human being”, one is religious and the other is science-based. The first definition is through the perspective of Christianity, according to it God first created Adam in his image, and then he created a companion for Adam which was named Eve. God sent both Adam and Eve to earth as a punishment but soon he forgave them then after forgiving them he taught them the way of survival on earth which included procreation and living off the land. After many years when Jesus Christ came to this earth, his followers received “Ten Commandments” that outlined the way of living a pious life. So according to Christianity, the first humans were Adam and Eve and through them, the rest of the humans came however, according to scientific definition, human beings came into existence over thousands of years through evolution. They adapted to their environment and gained a complex understanding of the world which allowed them to create civilizations and technology.
What is knowledge?
Knowledge is one’s understanding of the world that is acquired through different life experiences. Some of the knowledge is gained through education as it cannot be experienced but rather known through a study like the history of the world, mathematics, medical knowledge, etc. Familiarizing yourself with the world allows you to gain knowledge about it and this knowledge allows you to have more complex thoughts that open gates to the acquisition of more knowledge. Gaining knowledge in a specific field allows you to become a master in that field, for instance, studying architecture for several years will make the students gain enough knowledge that they can make structurally sound buildings. The integrity of these buildings will be a testament to the architect’s knowledge in that field. Knowledge is an endless pursuit and you can keep gaining it for the rest of your lives but one lifetime is not enough to gain all of the world’s knowledge.
What is your basis of ethics?
Ethics are developed over the years through different beliefs and experiences. Over the years, I have come to develop my understanding of ethics based on different experiences and beliefs. In my early years, I was taught the basic ethics by my parents that told me to show gratitude to those who were nice to me and apologize to those whom I had hurt. My world at the time was simple, as a simple thank you or sorry fixed everything. It was in my later years that my life started to become complex and so did my understanding of ethics. Things that were considered wrong or sinful from a religious point of view did not seem wrong according to my personal opinion. Relying on my moral compass allowed me to be less judgmental and more compassionate. It was then that I decided to develop my ethical understanding rather than blindly following societal norms.
What is the purpose of your existence?
The purpose of my existence can be defined in two ways, one that is determined by society and the second that I expect of myself. If I follow the purpose set by society then it is to be a good child to my parents, a good sibling, a good spouse, and a good parent. This purpose is predictable and it is the way our ancestors have lived. However, if I follow the purpose I feel called to then it would be to be successful in the field of my choosing and have a peaceful life as I get older. If I find a reliable partner then maybe I will get married but if not I do not wish to end up with someone that would make me miserable. My purpose is to lead a good life and to be good to the people I love.
Bogue, D. W., & Hogan, M. (2020). Foundational Issues in Christian Spirituality and Ethics. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, 10(3), 203–206. https://doi.org/10.1037/rel0000213
Burnett, T. (2012, May 21). What is Scientism? AAAS – DoSER. https://sciencereligiondialogue.org/resources/what-is-scientism/