So I just finished reading one of the fifteen books I have to have read before August. The title is The Challenge of Postmodernism. It is a collection of essays on the topic of postmodernism and the evangelical engagement that must occur within that context. One of the chapters is on the implications of a video-dependent society. Well, of course, television is discussed. Marie Winn states in her book The Plug-In Drug that we take in hours and hours of images every day with little or no mental effort given to formulating our own ideas about what we are being shown. We live off of nonverbal cognition. Words are no longer necessary in the media world. The result is deficiency in the ability of our kids to “read intelligently, communicate clearly, and reason morally.”
In such a world, William Brown says that things such as true, false, good and bad are stuff of language and ideas not visual images. Moral decisions are based on emotions and feelings and not reason. The end result according to the book is the increasing inability to discuss significant issues in a meaningful way.
WOW! No wonder hardly anyone thinks big thoughts anymore. They are so distracted by the plug-in drug. Television thinks for us and lulls us to sleep with its hypnotic and continual feed. We have become a sound bite world. We want to be told what to believe and think. We don’t want to grapple with the tough issues of life. We want to just be absorbed into the 30 minute solution world of television. No wonder theologically and morally we are drifting away. Look at all of the mixed messages we get from the tube. Look at what our fellow Christian brothers and sisters are watching. What impact is that having on their worldview?
A final quote from this chapter sums it all up. “Television captures the imagination but does not liberate it. A good book at once stimulates and frees the mind.” So why not pick up a time tested book- The Bible…
Heed a directive from Scripture:
“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:5