As part of my attempt to explain the significant difference between the ANALOGICAL THOUGHT of the Hebrew Bible writers and the RATIONAL/LOGIC THOUGHT of the Bible interpreters, today I’m going to try and explain what Greek or RATIONAL/LOGICAL THOUGHT is.
Since this is a style of thinking we all unconsciously use because we have all grown up with it, it is difficult to view our thought processes objectively or from an outside third-party perspective.
However, what could be more important than understanding the difference between how we and the Bible writers think?!
Understanding this will enable us to recover the way the Bible writers thought and thus allow us to understand what exactly they meant by what they said.
So let’s get into it.
The first thing you need to understand is that although you (especially if you are a Westerner, European or American) have probably never been exposed to any other style of thinking, rational/logical thought is by no means universal.
While it is true that for the past 2000 years everything in our modern Western culture and in most of the world’s cultures operates under rational/logical thought, there are still many cultures that do NOT operate under the Greek style of rational/logical thought.
For example, Asian folks like the Chinese and Japanese don’t think like Greeks.
Having lived in Asia for over 15 years now, I can personally testify to this.
Not only is rational/logical thought NOT universal, it is also NOT necessarily better or more advanced than analogical thought.
It is just radically different…virtually the opposite if the truth be told.
Again, it’s not like we made a conscious decision to choose to think like Greeks.
In our Western culture, we grew up surrounded by the rational/logical style of thought.
Noticing our Greek thought patterns is like asking a fish to notice the water it’s immersed in.
The fish would be like “What water? Where?!“”
That’s because since its birth, water is the only environment the fish has ever known.
It can’t even begin to contemplate that there might be other types of environments.
So what is rational/logical thought?
Well, the first thing you need to know is that rational/logical thought is embedded in the Scientific Method we are taught in grade school.
Rational/logical thinking operates according to a philosophy of cause and effect.
If I exercise regularly, then I will lose weight.
So it adheres to an IF/THEN proposition.
Rational/logical thinking is also systemized thought.
It operates under the assumption that all things are part of a bigger system that is structured in such a way that we can break it apart into smaller sub-systems.
We can then analyze these sub-systems individually to see how they function.
From this perspective, we can see that a car is a system composed of many subsystems.
For example, a car is composed of the following:
Each of these sub-systems can function by themselves on an individual basis.
However, when all of these sub-systems are properly put together, the result is one big smooth functioning system!
We now have a car.
Western medicine also operates according to Greek rational/logical thinking.
In other words, the human body is also viewed as a big system comprised of several sub-systems.
For example, the human body is made up out of the following:
Again, when our system or body breaks down, in general in the West, a holistic approach is NOT used.
If we have a hearing problem, we go to an ear doctor.
If we have a stomach problem, we go to a specialist for that.
This is perfect Greek thinking in action.
However, in the area of spiritual matters, rational/logical thought reveals its weaknesses.
For instance, Western medicine doesn’t see the soul as a subsystem of a human being.
Instead, they say the soul is just a belief that is the result of how our brain works.
Therefore, the soul is just a part of the brain.
And the idea of the spirit has zero meaning in modern Western medicine.
So if somebody gets taken over by a demonic spirit, Western medicine really doesn’t know how to deal with such a situation.