Thursday, March 12, 2009

Is Reality Closed, Open or Flat?

There are many theories out there when it concerns reality, but what are the implications?

In a closed system, there are limited resources that must be protected, as there will be dire danger if we do not "steward" these resources. While this may apply in the natural realm of conservation to the environment, does it apply to the social sciences? A naturalist view is based on natural science.

In economics, free markets allow a cyclic compounding of interests and bring about more proseperity than those that conserve in limiting risk. So, in economics, it seems that controlling the market would be the height of limiting productivity or prosperity. But, the risk is based on an understanding of an open universe, not a closed or flat one.

In a "flat system", "reality is what is, and is what is. This understanding is one of realism. It critiques or assesses the world and sees what is or has been. This is a cyclical view of history and can result in "wisdom" on principle. This understanding of reality fits best in the Christian worldview.

In this worldview, since man is understood to have certain "propensities", then there should be a wisdom about understanding the "universals" that lead to social problems, such as greed, envy, jealousy, etc. Understanding that humans do not change in their nature, our Founding Fathers understood the necessity to balance power. This is the basis of our three branches of government, federal and state balances, the Congress and the Senate and the individual vote in the electoral college.

The open understanding of reality, not only affirmed a free market economy, but also limited government, as a means for the individual and freedom of choice, which our Founding Fathers found to be important. Democracy allows the free exchange of information through our media outlets, where people can have difference of opinion and conviction. It also allows difference of commitment in intellectual understandings and convictions. Democracy allows diversity. And diversity demands openness!

So, whether one views the world as closed, flat or open, one must understand the necessity of allowing another view, so that our views can meet all the needs that are in this world. Otherwise, we will limit one aspect of human reality which will result in much suffering and pain.

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