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Discussing Apocalypticism

Last week Joel and Kev got us thinking about Apocalyptic Thinking with "It's Not The End of The World!" You can re-visit that message here.

Today we'll explore three questions inspired by this theme.

This clip from Madam Secretary gives a great example of apocalyptic thinking and how we can become fearful of impending doom.  It also gives us an example of characters who’d rather avoid bad news and bury their heads in the sand, than engage with it.

Whose response do you relate to most in this clip and why? When have you panicked over predictions or when have you buried your head in the sand and how did those situations pan out?

Joel concluded last week by highlighting how our quest for truth must step beyond the confines of church and religion… 

“The act of refusing to face reality is found within the believers of all movements, found in adherence to all ideologies and is a danger for all individuals.”

Where have you noticed that refusal to face reality in society and in yourself?

One of our Q trustees, Mick, recently visited Kenya and heard of a local church where hundreds of people were led to take their lives through starvation - "crucifying their flesh" so that they could be saved from the apocalypse they’d been convinced was coming and go to be with Jesus in Heaven.

How does this type of thinking take root in people?

Would we ever be convinced to do such irrational things?

Could our emotions be manipulated to lead us to sacrifice what’s precious to avoid a predicted disaster and for the promise of a utopian existence?

It’s easy to think we’d never fall for such things but as was said last week - those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it and as many have said...

"The one thing we know from history is that people don’t learn from history!"

We often talk at Q about the importance of thinking rationally, but how many of us think that we're living irrationally?

There’s an ancient book called Isaiah in which we read the phrase “Come now, let us reason together…”

One safeguard from the risk of irrational, ideological thinking is that we reason together - we have a community where we can disagree and bring contrasting perspectives, not just all follow one dogma - we all have a different rationale - our different set of reasons and beliefs for why and how we live - and I think a community where we can openly discuss these, disagree and still come back to the table and share is a precious resource.

How have you been irrational or apocalyptic in the past and avoided facing reality and where else do you notice this in society?

The catastrophic perspective of this character, that the world was destined for destruction without a miracle, left him anxious, stuck and imprisoned by fear.

The lady explains that the reason The Cold War didn’t erupt into full blown war was not because of a miracle but because a lot of people made good moves at the right time.

Rather than irrational, apocalyptic fear, she had hope for the future and faith in people.

Our final question today: When has the way you’ve viewed the world left you imprisoned by fear and why do you have hope for the future?

Have you got questions? We'd love to hear from you!

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