As much as I can I am going to attempt to break down all of the flaws, inconsistencies, fallacies. and down right blasphemies entrenched in Brian Gallagher’s post found here as well as give him his credit when it’s due, though that is more rare.
There are many reasons I feel this could be helpful, if for any other reason than to beat back quasi wisdom where ever it exists. In addition many of these points made by Gallagher are felt and encountered by Christians on a routine basis,though not so succinctly delivered.
Furthermore, I will be arguing for a Christian world view.
1. My religion is right so your religion must be wrong
Note: I will not be entering my religion vs relationship argument yet, as that could be construed as mere semantics at this point. For now, when I speak of religion I’m speaking of Christianity.
Gallagher begins his post with asking agreement on a premise that Divinity must be “big” and by this also makes the assumption that big must mean unknowable. This is akin to the Elephant in the pit with the 4 blind men, each feeling around having a different perspective on what the Elephant is. One thinks it’s a tree because of the legs, one a snake because of the trunk and so on. Gallagher doesn’t use this metaphor, but his “everyone sees a different part of the world” is essentially the same thing and in it lies the same fallacy in using it in the way he would like to. The problem is, is that we know there is an Elephant in the pit, and we know there is the world and this has been told to us in the example itself. In other words, the four blind men don’t know there is an Elephant in the pit, but we do because we have the objective view. Gallagher is assuming an objective view, a view that only the Divine (by his own admission) could have. Yet in the story and the example Gallagher gives we share this objective view, how? It was revealed.
He then moves to say that we can not describe divinity in it’s entirety because we have not experienced it in it’s entirety. I have not experienced a sun set in it’s entirety, yet I can describe one and even things I have experienced in it’s entirety I have come up short with words to describe the experience. I can’t imagine being able to explain in totality the wonder and joy found in watching the birth of my children.
So yes, there are different perspectives on truth, but to say that because everyone has a different perspective is to not prove that there is not an objective point of view. Nor is it to prove that one of those perspectives is indeed not more complete or more correct or accomplish more than others. Gallagher has begun by trying to plant our feet in mid air. He asserts that there is an absolute truth somewhere “out there” and there is no way to know, but how does he know this?