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Have You Heard of "Chronological Snobbery"?


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Here is part of an interesting article that shows how scientists, scholars, archaeologists, need humility when trying to understand history.  Otherwise they will dismiss certain real historical events as just myths, including those in the Bible.

It's called "Chronological Snobbery" or you could call it "Historical Snobbery".

 

Perhaps the Ancients Weren’t So Dumb:   A Flood of Evidence Is Embarrassing the ‘Experts’

By Eric Metaxas | August 12, 2016

 

Were the ancients dummies?

If so, why does archeology keep confirming what they wrote?  I’ll tell you why a healthy dose of humility can help us understand the past.

 

In his conversion story, “Surprised by Joy,” C. S. Lewis explains how his close friend, Owen Barfield, demolished his “chronological snobbery.” Lewis defined chronological snobbery as “the uncritical acceptance of the intellectual climate of our own age and the assumption that whatever has gone out of date is on that count discredited.”

 

In Lewis’s time, much of academia was already convinced that every past generation formed a staircase of progress, leading (of course) to enlightened modernity. And since Lewis’s death, many intellectuals have only become more convinced of their own perch at the pinnacle of history. These days, we barely even notice the snobbery.

 

Dr. Paul Goldin of the University of Pennsylvania derides what he sees as a “fixation” among Chinese archaeologists with “[proving] that all the ancient texts and legends have some fundamental truth … It shouldn’t be every archaeologist’s first instinct,” he says, “to see if their findings are matched in the historical sources.”

 

Come again?

Shouldn’t archaeologists want to know if what they’re digging up has significance in known history?

Sadly for many in the West, the answer is a resounding “not really.” This dismissal of ancient writings—including the Bible—is rooted in chronological snobbery. The ancients, experts today assume, were just too dumb or superstitious to get their own histories right.

This attitude has not only blinded us to potential discoveries, it’s made it very embarrassing for archaeologists when the ancients do turn out to be correct. I think, for example, of the recent discovery of Goliath’s hometown, Gath.

 

Or what about the unearthing of evidence for the biblical King Hezekiah, the likely discovery of the palace where Pilate tried Jesus, or the compelling evidence that “the house of David,” contrary to decades of secular scholarship, was founded by a real, historical man after God’s own heart?

All of these discoveries came as shocks to archaeologists and historians who doubted that such figures, places, or people ever existed. But again and again, our belief that the ancients were better at making myths than they were at recording history has handicapped archeology, and left a lot of smart folks scraping egg off their faces.

They were not dummies. And we who dig up the remains of their civilizations aren’t always as clever as we like to believe.

 

http://cnsnews.com/commentary/eric-metaxas/perhaps-ancients-werent-so-dumb-flood-evidence-embarrassing-experts

Edited by Beggar for the Spirit
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23 minutes ago, Beggar for the Spirit said:

Here is part of an interesting article that shows how scientists, scholars, archaeologists, need humility when trying to understand history.  Otherwise they will dismiss certain real historical events as just myths, including those in the Bible.

It's called "Chronological Snobbery" or you could call it "Historical Snobbery".

 

Perhaps the Ancients Weren’t So Dumb:   A Flood of Evidence Is Embarrassing the ‘Experts’

By Eric Metaxas | August 12, 2016

 

Were the ancients dummies?

If so, why does archeology keep confirming what they wrote?  I’ll tell you why a healthy dose of humility can help us understand the past.

 

In his conversion story, “Surprised by Joy,” C. S. Lewis explains how his close friend, Owen Barfield, demolished his “chronological snobbery.” Lewis defined chronological snobbery as “the uncritical acceptance of the intellectual climate of our own age and the assumption that whatever has gone out of date is on that count discredited.”

 

In Lewis’s time, much of academia was already convinced that every past generation formed a staircase of progress, leading (of course) to enlightened modernity. And since Lewis’s death, many intellectuals have only become more convinced of their own perch at the pinnacle of history. These days, we barely even notice the snobbery.

 

Dr. Paul Goldin of the University of Pennsylvania derides what he sees as a “fixation” among Chinese archaeologists with “[proving] that all the ancient texts and legends have some fundamental truth … It shouldn’t be every archaeologist’s first instinct,” he says, “to see if their findings are matched in the historical sources.”

 

Come again?

Shouldn’t archaeologists want to know if what they’re digging up has significance in known history?

Sadly for many in the West, the answer is a resounding “not really.” This dismissal of ancient writings—including the Bible—is rooted in chronological snobbery. The ancients, experts today assume, were just too dumb or superstitious to get their own histories right.

This attitude has not only blinded us to potential discoveries, it’s made it very embarrassing for archaeologists when the ancients do turn out to be correct. I think, for example, of the recent discovery of Goliath’s hometown, Gath.

 

Or what about the unearthing of evidence for the biblical King Hezekiah, the likely discovery of the palace where Pilate tried Jesus, or the compelling evidence that “the house of David,” contrary to decades of secular scholarship, was founded by a real, historical man after God’s own heart?

All of these discoveries came as shocks to archaeologists and historians who doubted that such figures, places, or people ever existed. But again and again, our belief that the ancients were better at making myths than they were at recording history has handicapped archeology, and left a lot of smart folks scraping egg off their faces.

They were not dummies. And we who dig up the remains of their civilizations aren’t always as clever as we like to believe.

 

http://cnsnews.com/commentary/eric-metaxas/perhaps-ancients-werent-so-dumb-flood-evidence-embarrassing-experts

 

Neil, a perfect example of that snobbery in presented in the video "patterns of evidence" about Moses and the exodus. If you haven't seen it , check it out. I found it on Amazon. Very interesting.

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  • 6 months later...
On 8/13/2016 at 4:48 PM, Pjdriver said:

Neil, a perfect example of that snobbery in presented in the video "patterns of evidence" about Moses and the exodus. If you haven't seen it , check it out. I found it on Amazon. Very interesting.

 

"Patterns of Evidence: Exodus" is also on Netflix.  If you have a Netflix account it is free to watch anytime.

 

The interesting thing is that if archaeologists say that they are hunting for evidence of the Exodus the Egyptian government will not allow them to dig.  If they say they are searching for evidence of the Hyksos expulsion they are allowed to dig.  As long as they are looking for evidence of the Hyksos we are getting evidence of the Exodus without the archaeologists (or the Egyptian government)  knowing that's what they are finding.

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As well as intellectual snobbery, there are racial issues. Like the story above, Muslim countries are not so keen on archaeologists looking for evidence of Israel in their territory, it's a touchy subject. This is also true if they support a state for the Palestinians in and around Israel as well.

 

Chinese areas are not keen on archaeologists looking for evidence of Western cultures Greek, Roman or early 'Christian' that may have influenced their culture.

 

I find the racial type snobbery when talking to ones of certain 'races'. There is the 'out of India theory that teaches that all civilisation originated from India that I have been told by Indian/Pakistan people living here. Also, 'Out of China' theory that states the same to Chinese people -  The Peking Man and other archeological finds are held up to 'prove it' despite the fact the Peking Man bone bits are never available for scientific testing.

 

Various nationalities let racial superiority on this subject cloud their thinking and the theories are fitted to evolution and taught in schools, thus they are mostly not wanting to hear about the Bible which they have been taught is a Western Construct.

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