Sometime around 2005 I was fresh out of the business world and pastoring full time at Cornerstone Church in Johannesburg, South Africa. I felt compelled to do two things in this order: 1. I read through the book of Daniel about 4 or 5 times; 2. I started to read up a bit on the history and major themes in western philosophy.
These two events got me thinking; about life and ethics and my faith and science and a myriad of other things.
Here are a few key, yet diverse thoughts:
- Daniel’s prophecies are minutely accurate.
- Daniel did not just predict Greek and Roman culture, he also predicted Greek and Roman philosophy.
- Ideas have more consequence than anything else.
- Our cultural worldview is pretty much established before we turn 6.
- It is seldom the recognized scientists who produce significant science, and the academic institution of science does not produce many significant scientists. The significant ones tend to bring their ideas from outside of the science establishment.
- Monotheism is not a man made idea.
- The scientific process, as useful as it is, is not the the only means to knowledge, and it is an incomplete process.
- The scientific process is dependent on other more fundamental processes; ones which are largely taken for granted.
- Development is not the same thing as Progress.
- Extreme Western and Eastern philosophies are embracing each other and will soon become one world philosophy.
Apart from Daniel there are a few other authors I must recommend:
- Søren Kierkegaard – the greatest philosopher so far in my little opinion.
- Job – who first posed the greatest questions.
- CS Lewis’ “The Abolition of Man” and “Miracles” although I would start with “Mere Christianity”
- Darrow Millar
- Augustine – where would we be without him?
- Martin Luther – and where would we be without him?
- Niccolò Machiavelli
- GK Chesterton