Ep 193: How do we build a better world after Covid?
There feels to be no bigger question facing society at present. Covid has transformed our lives and our world and recovery offers a rare opportunity to reset. But what is the best way of building a better world? We discuss a rarely explored path which might help build a much better world for the future.
Our guest: Dr Christopher Watkin. Chris works as senior lecturer in French Studies at Monash University in Melbourne. His research seeks to understand how people make sense of the world, and how they interact with ideas and positions different from their own. He’s an author, blogger, philosopher and thought leader.
A link to the World Economic Forum.
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Bigger Questions asked in this conversation
Chris, you teach French and read a lot of French literature, so does that mean that you’re an expert in love?
The Great Reset
Now Chris, there is no doubt that the Coronavirus pandemic has led to a lot of change and disruption right across the world. So today’s big question asks how to build a better world after Covid. Now one particular idea at envisaging a better world was proposed last year by the World Economic Forum called The Great Reset. What is the Great Reset?
This makes sense though doesn’t it? There is a great opportunity to ‘reset things’ as Klaus Schwab the Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum says, ‘The pandemic represents a rare, but narrow window of opportunity to reflect, reimagine and reset our world’
So how is the Great Reset supposed to work? How do they propose to reset things?
Now Chris, you work in French studies, which seems a long way from the Global Economic Forum, what got you interested in the Great Reset?
Bible: vision for flourishing society in Bible
Do you think the Bible can offer anything on a vision for the future and how to create a better world post Covid?
There may be ideas in the Bible which could help provide a vision for a better world, and some of these are found in a section when Jesus was asked which was the most important commandment, and he responded in Mark 12:29-31
The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
Could the concept of love your neighbour as yourself be the basis for a social contract?
But is love ever at the heart of social contracts? Is love a part of what the World Economic Forum desire?
So how is what the Bible offers distinct from a new social contract?
So what difference does your Christian faith make to you as you consider this big question of social contracts, great resets and making the world a better place?
The Big Question
So Chris, how do we build a better world after Covid?
Regarding biblical commandments and statutes, the original ones, Jesus said to honor the commandments of his Father. Few, if any, do, especially today! Regarding the the first commandment, a scribe asked Jesus, "Which commandment is the first of all?". Jesus answered, "The first is, 'Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God, the Lord is one; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.' The second is this, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these." (Mark 28,29,30,31,RSV,1952) Regarding the "Bible", there are many versions that are full of "grave defects" which were created by those who opposed the original doctrine of Christ. Those who oppose Christ today are many and they follow the commandments of men, NOT GOD!