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Discernment and the pursuit of truth

I'm about to start writing a talk that I reckon has being a few years in the making. We are doing a series on discernment at blueprint at the moment, looking at the place that questions and doubt have in out faith. Part of the motivation of this series has come from looking at Scott Peck's four stages of faith. The bit below is copied straight from wiki
  • Stage I is chaotic, disordered, and reckless. Very young children are in Stage I. They tend to defy and disobey, and are unwilling to accept a will greater than their own. Many criminals are people who have never grown out of Stage I.
  • Stage II is the stage at which a person has blind faith. Once children learn to obey their parents, they reach Stage II. Many so-called religious people are essentially Stage II people, in the sense that they have blind faith in God, and do not question His existence. With blind faith comes humility and a willingness to obey and serve. The majority of good law-abiding citizens never move out of Stage II.
  • Stage III is the stage of scientific skepticism and inquisitivity. A Stage III person does not accept things on faith but only accepts them if convinced logically. Many people working in scientific and technological research are in Stage III.
  • Stage IV is the stage where an individual starts enjoying the mystery and beauty of nature. While retaining skepticism, he starts perceiving grand patterns in nature. His religiousness and spirituality differ significantly from that of a Stage II person, in the sense that he does not accept things through blind faith but does so because of genuine belief. Stage IV people are labelled as Mystics.
Really we are wanting to encourage each other to move from stage II in which so many people and churches probably camp. However it takes courage to ask questions, to go through a period of deconstruction, though I think it is crucial to developing depth in our faith, and I suspect may be why we loose so many young Christians as soon as they hit uni and realise that things are quite as black and white as they may have first thought.

Anyway, I must endeavour to avoid the pull of facebook, youtube and my blog, as well as all the other little bits and bobs that lends itself to procrastination and actually write the talk. So im cranking pitchblack (the best background sermon writing music) and going for it!!!

“Discernment and the pursuit of truth”

  1. Blogger Matt Says:

    Do you reckon that one always goes through those stages in order? I'm pretty sure I went straight from stage one to stage three...

    Looking forward to the talk. :)

  2. Blogger Tash Says:

    ok so random because i read those stages, identify with stage 4 and then feel like i'm obviously deluding myself - because how could i possibly be a stage 4 faith person when i feel so faithless half the time.... ?
    sheesh.

  3. Anonymous lisa Says:

    A man named Fowler also had stages of faith development but he has 6 its interesting to see the correlation between his and the ones you have listed. According to Fowlers list most people are in stage 3.

    Stage 1 is Intutive - Projective Faith - Faith absorbed from parents.

    Stage 2 is Mythic Literal Faith. Faith from parents and other authority figures.

    Stage 3 (where fowler states most are) Synthetic Convential. Faith from the group

    Stage 4 is Individuating Reflective. Where people begin to be resposible for their own faith. All aobut angst and struggle, can see aperson go back to stage 3 (less often goes to stage 5)

    Stage 5 Paradoxical- Consoidative Individuals absorb the good from opposite polarities Sees the big picture and seeks justices beyond own culture and people

    In reply to Matt, Gabriel Moran has yet another theory . He is a catholic educator and he believes that faith is not linear but something relient on grace and also the role of significant others beside us.