Dr. Os Guinness’ Personal Page on Praxis Circle
We explain in Why Praxis? and About on our website what Praxis Circle hopes to accomplish with you, the problems and needs we will try to address together, why we believe we’re different than many of the other options in the educational worldview space, and some of our founding and governing principles.
To summarize: What we seek is New Worldview Thinking from each of our Members and participants in the 21st Century.
No doubt, you know right now where you’re located and what century we’re in – so that last phrase above is admittedly a less than subtle attempt to highlight an important aspect of our mission.
Yes, we’re quite serious about the “new worldview thinking” still early in this century, and we think we can do it together, but we’re in no way suggesting, as did the possessed Louis Tully in the original Ghostbusters movie, that Gozer the Traveler will soon appear at the top of a skyscraper in one of his pre-chosen forms, or even that the third reconciliation of the last of the Meketrex supplicants is just around the bend (meet Gozer).
No, we don’t need signs from another world.
But we do see, probably with you, from extensive worldview research and global news-watch that the West is ripe for major worldview elaborations and resets. The national and global tensions (described in more detail below) are true signs in the knowable present that new worldviews are “works-in-process,” to quote business and commercial speak.
Genuinely new worldview thinking seems to run in about 50 – 100 year cycles, so that much of what we’re seeing now in “Worldview Wars” and from philosophy goes back to somewhere before World War I through the late 1960’s, and we believe that at the current rate of development the West is probably overdue for truly fresh worldview material.
Was it Hegel, quoting Gozer, who said that the Owl of Minerva flies at dusk?
Indeed, such new thinking is already out there, and we will help each other find it.
In sum, with your help, Praxis Circle wants to be part of this worldview review and new thinking.
Clearly, regular people like us can do this.
How will we do this?
Like any journey, one step at a time.
For example, each Praxis Circle blog post will highlight a relevant video.
Our first blog post, Praxis Circle Launch and Mission, highlighted our Homepage’s video where May-Lily Lee, one of our Praxis Contributors, answers the question “What is Praxis Circle?”
Similarly, this second post features a clip from our interview of Os Guinness, one of our Expert Contributors, who is (most certainly unknown to him), the Father of Praxis Circle. Dr. Guinness is a social critic and prolific author who pointed out early in the Praxis effort that all of our questions had to do with worldview, certainly a key insight for us!
We are very grateful that Dr. Guinness did that interview, and you’ll hear much more about him in the future.
Over thirty years ago, Dr. Guinness was a thought leader who began writing and lecturing about America’s and the West’s “culture wars,” and since the 1980’s has become one of the strongest advocates of the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment, the genius of the American Founders, and the need for freedom in the global “civil public square.” ( The Global Public Square)
Dr. Guinness’ interests and writing fit squarely with Praxis Circle’s mission, and we will need to “practice what he preaches” in order to succeed.
The particular video featured above, The Big Question: Freedom of Conscience or Culture Warring, places the viewer well into the interview when Os is talking about his role in furthering the Williamsburg Charter to highlight the importance of free speech in America.
In some ways, this is a “random” clip in the context of the whole interview because it involves his own account of an important time in his life, rather than any particular point directly concerning worldview.
But we lead with this video because we want to highlight that abuse of power in high places or in the public square can come from any person or group at any time, no matter how “good” he, she, or they might be, and that we all need humility when accepting the rights and duties that the privileges of law and American citizenship offer (or any citizenship for that matter).
We were surprised and disappointed to hear from Os during that interview (where shown in the clip above) that certain Reagan-era Republicans apparently had issues with making the First Amendment a featured attraction, as Dr. Guinness describes, given admiration for much of what they did for the country and the world.
In sum, Praxis Circle wants to address the current environment of Worldview Wars with you and prove that it’s possible to communicate respectfully, reasonably, and thoroughly in order to achieve mutual understanding (in contrast to agreement) from all sides. This requires going into the public arena, listening, and striving to learn and to contribute.
And we think this can and must be done without leaving one’s feelings, emotions, desires, will, and conscience at the door.
We will strive to be fully transparent, open, and honest and produce a high-quality worldview dialogue . . . and to assist you in doing the same.
Our formal launch date will be Wednesday, September 12, and we hope you will become a PC Member in the meantime.
The three primary benefits of Membership: 1) receiving notice of blogs, new videos, offerings, and activities, 2) gaining access to our educational Courses, and 3) gaining access to our Contributors’ full interviews (like Dr. Guinness’ full interview).
Our next series of Circling blogs will begin on September 12, when we will begin addressing these threshold worldview issues: What is a worldview? Who has them? Why are they important? Why are they and their study so controversial? Where do they come from? How do they change? What are the dominant worldviews in America, the West, and the rest of the world?
We look forward to this worldview journey with you.