In the prior article, we spoke in a Hubble telescope framework defining how pervasive and disorienting change has become of late, we need to examine a comparatively smaller point of reference. Moving from a telescopic perspective to our culture of chaos in the United States, no doubt, Thanksgiving dinner conversations will focus on the signs of the times bound up in inflation.
As a country, the impact of change cannot be ignored. Even our language has changed to accommodate words like “Cancel Culture, transgender, gender dysphoria, pronoun choices, referring to someone as a non-binary person, surgical change of minors, etc.”
Beginning with the macro-picture of the cosmos to language modifications is a steep mountain of information to descend. The U.S. culture has undergone radical change in every sector of society at the fastest speed we experienced. No wonder there is confusion, conflict, and chaos referred to as a “Pandemic of Confusion” (Jeffrey Toney, American Scientist magazine).
The Church in the U.S. is experiencing a remodeling process currently. Being Catholic, I can speak for the culture change occurring in my Church only. Have other churches experienced such significant change? If so, how so?
Victor Frankl’s theory (author: Man’s Search for Meaning) and analysis is jaw-dropping., He says as culture declines (our current state), people enter a vacuum of sorts where they choose to do what others are doing or blindly follow a leader. Only two elements occur: societal norms or external directives reshape individual behavior and thinking. My translation: we are losing a thinking population.
To whet your appetite for the kind of conversations we plan to have, here are questions we may pose::
- The culture is changing – there is no doubt. Are you comfortable doing what everyone else is doing?
- Are you prepared to comply as an alternative?
- Is there a Third Way? What role can religious institutions play to inspire individuals through these cultural challenges?
“If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.”
William H. McRaven