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Worldview Analysis and Personal Inventory Essay

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Updated: Aug 2nd, 2022

The notions of ethics and spirituality cannot be eliminated from the paradigm of health care due to their tremendous impact on both the patients’ and professionals’ worldviews. However, over the past decades, the origins of ethics and spirituality have become rather diverse and contradictory. Thus, according to the Christian framework of spirituality, a fellow human is entitled to perceive the world through the lens of sinful existence and redemption. Indeed, after the human world was infected with sin because of Adam and Eve, people, although destined to become susceptible to sins, found a purpose in redemption after death (Grand Canyon University, 2020). From the Christian perspective, spirituality is a phenomenon that predefines human existence and provides it with meaning despite the obstacles in the way.

As a result, in the context of health care, people learn how to deal with hardships from the perspective of a bigger purpose they serve in the world and would serve in the afterlife. When it comes to ethics, the Bible serves as an ultimate direction of the good and the bad in one’s life. When living in a world replete with sin and temptation, the Bible provides a universal guide of God’s word.

On the contrary, the phenomenon of postmodern relativism seems to erase the line between the versatility of moral principles. According to the relativism perspective, people are not allowed to perceive one’s behavior as inherently good or bad as long as they cannot relate to the experience of this individual (Grand Canyon University, 2020). Such a perspective has a full-scale right to exist in a world as complicated as it is today. For example, while the Christian perspective is mostly against the legalization of euthanasia, the relativism vision states that people not undergoing the suffering of a person cannot decide whether the choice to terminate their life is morally justifiable. Thus, it may be concluded that the Christian and relativist perspectives on spirituality and ethics mostly differ in terms of freedom of interpretation, while each of them has a full-scale right to exist in the modern socio-cultural context.

When people ponder the origin of a certain phenomenon, they tend to believe in things that have scientific backing to justify the claim. At some point, as a result, people have initiated a philosophical tendency known as scientism, an approach that claims that everything people know about reality derives from hard scientific evidence (Burnett, n.d.). The origins of this movement trace back to the genesis of empiricism, or the emphasis on human observation and senses as the primary means of acquiring and processing information. The empirical approach to knowledge eventually contributed to the evolution of positivism, a belief that religion and metaphysics, while not tangible and eligible for hard proof, should not be perceived seriously by society.

Although the concept of scientism exists today, it is generally frowned upon in the scholarly community due to two primary reasons. To begin with, as it was stated in the article “10 things you should know about scientism” by Moreland (2018), the phenomenon of scientism is self-refuting because the very claim that everything known to humans comes from hard scientific evidence has not been yet proved by science. Another reason is the fact that scientism tends to leave many aspects of human existence unanswered, whereas their existence cannot be characterized as people’s subjective opinion. Several examples of such aspects include the origin of the universe, the paradigm of human behavior and consciousness, and the origin of some generally accepted laws of nature (Moreland, 2018). Hence, it may be concluded that the notion of scientism is a highly controversial aspect of philosophical thought that makes people question moral principles, spirituality, and faith as factors of their meaningful existence.

Literature and scholarly evidence claim the existence of several versions of ultimate reality. They include but are not limited to the material world, the human mind, God, and nature (Grand Canyon University, 2020). For me, being sure about the definition of an ultimate reality means the absence of purpose and reflection. For this reason, I tend to believe that any of these options might either appear true or exist in symbiosis. However, if there was a choice to make, I would opt for the power of the human mind and consciousness as an ultimate reality since the world has now become so integrated into socio-cultural patterns that it is our minds that control us with the information to obtain in a matter of seconds. Being an RN, I had seen cases when people’s thoughts encouraged them to act in a way that other forces could impact.

The nature of the universe has been one of the hardest questions to answer for centuries. Similar to the ultimate reality, the definition of universe emergence should never be bound to any particular reason, as the refusal to perceive the information critically is an obligatory skill for people working in the medical field. My answer to the question of the nature of the universe has two equally respectable and possible answers: our universe is either a result of the Big Bang and complex physical and chemical interactions, or it is God’s creation. Both these options have aspects that cannot yet be explained or comprehended by a plain human mind, which makes me learn to respect any position on the matter without the urge to judge anyone.

The vocation of a nurse makes people reconsider their perception of human life and humans’ purpose in the world, as every single day, medical professionals face unprecedented cases of cruelty and injustice. For this reason, over the past years of clinical practice, my definition of a human being has acquired an anthropological sense, claiming a person, with all their merits and flaws, is the center of our universe. A human being is a natural or God’s creation capable of feeling, communicating, and changing the world around them once and for all. For a registered nurse, a human being will always be an ultimate cause to exist, as we tend to think that existence itself is rather selfish, yet we cannot imagine a life without the surroundings to share it. Hence, however sinful or divine, a human being will always be perceived as a driving force of a universe.

For some people, such as the supporters of scientism or empiricism, knowledge is an aforementioned ultimate reality that predefines the existence of every single thing in the universe. However, when thinking of the modern globalized perspective of information and knowledge, it becomes evident that the inability to filter knowledge automatically turns it into a threat. In my perception of knowledge, I tend to agree with Ikujiro Nonaka, who labeled a metaphorical perception of knowledge as an iceberg divided into the explicit and tacit parts (Bolisani & Bratianu, 2018). Thus, the explicit knowledge concerns everything tangible and measurable, whereas the tacit part of this iceberg is the human’s knowledge that subconsciously derives from experience. Being a nurse, I notice that sometimes the only option to find an answer is to listen to one’s intuition driven by tacit knowledge, making knowledge itself storage of our most bizarre and inexplicable experiences.

My paradigm of ethics is a compilation of various sources that helped me define the values I cherish as a human being and a medical professional. To begin with, my basis of ethics addresses the ecological systems that surround me since childhood, as the interactions with family and close surroundings initiate our behavioral patterns and perceptions of good and bad. Secondly, my ethical principles are based on philosophical and religious dogmas, as such phenomena as the Ten Commandments or the theory of utilitarianism helped me prioritize my moral values and establish a moral compass. Finally, my perception of ethics relies heavily on the professional literature and nursing ethics code standards, as they provide me with an action framework in a challenging setting.

There is a reason people are reluctant to ponder their purpose in life, as this question is highly existential and even depressing for the vast majority of us. However, being a medical professional somehow predefines the purpose of your existence, as people make a conscious choice of serving others when opting for a medical career. Hence, it would be fair to say that one of my primary purposes in life is helping others buy more time to rediscover their purpose in life. However, the ultimate goal of our existence is to leave the world different than it was before us, and this mission may be completed in more ways than serving others.

References

Bolisani, E., & Bratianu, C. (2018). The elusive definition of knowledge. In Emergent knowledge strategies (pp. 1-22). Springer, Cham.

Burnett, T. (n.d.). American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Grand Canyon University. (2020). [E-book].

Moreland, J. P. (2018). Crossway.

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