We are in the middle of a clash between paradigms. It’s a tug of war between ideologies. Most people don’t recognize it because it’s been going on for so long. Learning to recognize and handle this conflict is a necessary skill in our modern world.
Moving Beyond The Tribal Worldview
If we understand something, we make better decisions about it. So we hope this article will help you comprehend the clash that’s going on between a tribal and inclusive worldview. Because this clash has been going on for ages, we cannot see it or grasp the implications.
If you understand the components of these two worldviews, then you can make more informed decisions. By the end of this discussion, you will see why moving beyond the tribal mindset to an inclusive one is not just an option but necessary. Let’s start with some definitions.
What is a Paradigm or Worldview?
A paradigm is another word for a worldview. Think of it as a filter through which we view the world, and it contains our beliefs and values. It’s the framework that provides structure to our thinking. But in doing so, it creates boundaries.
It places values on thoughts and beliefs. And so acts much like colored glass, coloring everything. This an automatic filter that tells us what is right and wrong. This judgment is often subconscious, so we aren’t aware of its operation. This filter gets the majority of its programming from our cultural narrative.
The Tribal Worldview
First, it is essential to understand the difference in terms of a tribal paradigm or worldview and the term “tribal” related to indigenous people. These are two different things.
We are not talking about the genetic or historical roots of indigenous people. We are talking about an ideology that mimics specific characteristics. Most indigenous people exhibit a higher level of inclusive universal values than almost all modern cultures. This is especially true of those cultures dominated by the religions of the Abrahamic tree (1).
The Abrahamic religions are Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. They get their tribal characteristics from their historical roots of Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, and Persian mystery religions.
The basis of a tribal worldview is segregation, not inclusion. It segregates people by shared traits. The tribe selects one or more elements such as religious belief, race, or ethnicity. This distinguishes the group from all other people. Now, it’s a tribe.
If you are in the tribe, you belong. If you are not a member of the tribe, you are an enemy. This is the tribal mentality. This means the dominant worldviews are tribal in nature. And the tribe dictates values and religious beliefs that are unjust and discriminatory.
If you think in terms of tribal boundaries, you will always be in conflict with someone. There will always find those outside the tribe as untrustworthy, even enemies. A tribal point of view is a worldview based on biases and prejudice. It always equates to us-against-them. This is an ancient paradigm system that bases thinking and values on mythologies. It is a deception resulting in mistaking mythology as fact.
These constructs divide people into beliefs, race, ethnicity, and gender bias. Those in charge use this strategy to control and exploit people. A good example is the dark ages (2). They program people to judge with a filter of hate.
The Inclusive Worldview
This worldview perceives everyone and everything as being of equal value. This inclusive philosophy negates the power of arbitrary tribal worldviews. An inclusive philosophy strives for equity and equality for all people. It holds that all of life is sacred, mystical, and meaningful.
This worldview accepts and promotes the advancement of logic, science, and the scientific approach to benefit everyone and everything. This mindset is responsible for all the real and tangible advances of humankind.
A Clash Between Paradigms
A clash of paradigms exists when two differing ideologies try to exert their influence on the same group. We live in the middle of a major paradigm clash. It started at the beginning of the post-classical period in about 500 CE. On one side is mythology and superstition masquerading as “religion.” On the other side of this conflict are logic, reason, and science.
Science grew out of the need to find better answers than mythology was selling. But mythology in the form of religion has a hold on the programming of the cultural narrative. Science and reason provide the freethinkers who innovate and find solutions to problems.
You’d think everyone would like science, but you’d be wrong. Science finds facts. This exposes the origins of superstitions and mythologies. That’s the problem. Exposing the truth causes the paradigm clash.
There are several ways to frame this clash. Some see it as faith vs. facts or science vs. religion. Faith relates to the belief that religious mythology supersedes any opposing evidence or logic. Science relates to processes with a basis in evidence. In contrast, religion places faith and belief as superior to evidence and logic.
The Need to Control and Feel Safe
The clash between paradigms is a battle of ideologies. Religion wants to control the thoughts and values of people through self-hypnosis and group hypnosis. They want to build a tribe of paying customers. Science wants to advance humankind through the use of reason and common sense.
No matter how you define it. It could be the argument of faith vs. facts or science vs. religion. Their fears all come from the same place. Any threat to their paradigm is a threat to their identity.
When people ask, what do you believe, they are asking you what tribe you belong to. The answer to this question tells them whether you are safe. You are safe if your beliefs are similar enough. In other words, do you share the same fears, and are you bound by the same thought and value controls?
People will consider new ideas if your underlying values seem similar to theirs. This is because they program people to think in terms of tribal boundaries. It’s not their fault. The cultural narrative uses systematic, brainwashing techniques. Many people go through indoctrination at an early age in their families. Then they continue the cycle.
You can help them break free and become freethinkers.
Moving Beyond the Tribal Worldview
The goal is to help someone trapped in a tribal paradigm see the bigger universal picture. To do this, you need to be acceptable to the tribe. You may not yet be a trusted member, but you need to align yourself, so you are “safe” enough for them to accept any new ideas. Your new idea might be as simple as prompting someone to do their research. This is a big step for many.
“The argument goes like this. No one thinks their beliefs are wrong. Yet, most would agree that their beliefs confine their perspective. They only feel safe when someone believes what they do. It’s the trap of belief. This is why people need to ask what you believe. They need to know so they can judge you based on the boundaries of their beliefs and values.
So, to align with them, I say I believe the good in all religions. I am a Christian, a Muslim, a Buddhist and Hindu plus many more. Some people are okay with this answer.. But others tell me I must one religion. I ask them why? Isn’t it more prudent to believe the best in all, rather than confining yourself to just one point of view?
If they ask you what are the good things of my religion? Respond, what do you think are the positive things? Then you begin the real discussion.” — Guru Tua
Discussing the Inclusive Worldview Perspective
So, here is the strategy. When someone asks what you believe, you might say you agree with all the paths that lead to a better world for everyone. Then ask them what they believe. Show you align with their paradigm, but above all, be truthful.
For example, if they are a Christian, tell them you believe the positive aspects of Christianity. If they are Muslim, tell them you align with all the positive aspects of Islam. Whatever their worldview, seek some common ground and connect the bottom line to apply the inclusive universal perspective. Let them know you respect any path consistent in promoting love for everyone and all living things.
Alignment to Open Dialogue
The above approach works well if you can get an initial alignment. If they believe you are genuine in your alignment, you can start moving beyond the continuum from tribal toward the inclusive worldview. To introduce any “new” ideas, you must first be able to project some alignment with the underlying ideas of their tribe.
Sadly, some people are so ingrained and programmed into their religious beliefs; we cannot persuade them with facts. They strive to maintain tribal vs. universal conflict. Yet, these same people would not dream of giving up the modern conveniences that science has brought to their lives.
All you can do is plant seeds of thought. They must learn how to question the cultural narrative. We will probably not eliminate this clash between paradigms. But we can plant seeds in our circle of influence.
We hope you found this article helpful, maybe even thought-provoking. Please examine your beliefs in the light of the inclusive worldview that promotes sound science.
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(1) Abrahamic Religions, Wikipedia
(2) The Dark Ages, Wikipedia
(3) Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia