I had the PRIVILEGE of hearing Ravi Zacharias speak to a group of senior pastors from around KC last Friday afternoon. It was stimulating, challenging, & encouraging…all at the same time. I thought I'd share an executive summary of what he talked about.
The first part of his talk centered on some global cultural trends that he's been observing recently.
Global Cultural Trends:
1. The Concept of the "Death of God" — He pointed to the growing popularization of the concept that "God is dead" (or "there is no God") and the stridency of people now willing to live with its ramifications — the way people view morality and ethics in our culture is indicative of this.
2. The West Misunderstands the Discussion — He said the West erroneously believes it's in a "dialogue" of ideas with a multicultural world. In actuality, the rest of the world is in "monologue" with the West — wanting to promote it's religious & cultural views in the West, without reciprocating (& even suppressing by force) by allowing the awareness of Christian ideas within it's borders. It's one-direction only.
3. The Trend toward Visual Learning — He pointed to the trend of society being informed more & more through visual elements. Entertainment is now supreme. He also pointed out that people are beginning to blur the lines between the real and the imaginary (i.e. think "virtual worlds").
4. The Shift to a Younger World — He pointed out that 60% of the world is not under the age of 24. And of them, over half live within a 3-hour flight of Singapore (I think that's what he said…I was furiously taking notes then). This caused him to point out the need for International Youth Ministry efforts to support that growing population.
5. The Visual/Emotional Generation — He concluded by saying that our generation has begun to "listen" with its eyes (i.e. visual learning) and "think" with its feelings (instead of it's mind).
Very thought-provoking stuff. I'll share his proposed solutions tomorrow.