Whose World is This?

 Whose world is this?
The world is yours, the world is yours
It’s mine, it’s mine, it’s mine
Whose world is this?
“It’s yours!”
It’s mine, it’s mine, it’s mine
Whose world is this?

Song lyric from “The World is Yours”  by NAS

So whose world is it?  Is it yours? Is it mine? And what difference does it make?

When we look at the world what do we see?  Do you look out and see a world that’s waiting to be occupied, utilized, cultivated, and improved upon?  Do you look upon the land and see the abundance of opportunities just waiting to be seized upon?  What do you see when the world is yours?  What do you see when the world is mine?

For better or worse we have been conditioned in this country to see the world, through the eyes of “me”.  We have been raised and participate in a world that encourages us to strive to be individualized.  To stand as one and to seize on those opportunities that benefit us and may bring us better standing.

I am currently reading Faith Seeking Understanding: An Introduction to Christian Theology by Daniel L. Migliore for my Religion and Media class and today we talked about creation.  Migliore writes, “Humanity and the other creatures are bound together in suffering and hope.”(pg.98)  This challenges the belief that the world and everything that is outside of the individual is objectified and available for individual use as you or I may see fit.

Historically, Christianity hasn’t done the best job of communicating being bound together with the rest of creation.  Often times people will go the creation stories in the Bible and cite that famous passage in Genesis talking about having dominion over the earth and how the other things that God has created are for human use.  In fact many have used this passage as a justification to exploit and harm what God has created for personal gain.  As we go forward and continue to examine the ways that individuals, families, corporations and countries discuss how we relate to others, including animals and natural resources, perhaps the Church can help reframe and reclaim how we see the world.

Perhaps we could offer for people to see the world as ours, as an interconnected gift from God.

I’ll close with a music video from the rock group Pearl Jam.  What images grab you?  How do you see religious symbols being used in this video and what are they trying to communicate? Do you agree with their assessment?

The World is Yours by Nas  (Lyrics PG-13)

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6 Responses to Whose World is This?

  1. Brenda says:

    Even schools are beginning to recognize the “me” generation is a problem. Soe Weil wrote an excellent article that includes:
    “Which is why we need to adopt a new purpose for schooling: to provide all students, in age-appropriate ways, with the knowledge, tools, and motivation to be conscientious choicemakers and engaged changemakers for a peaceful and healthy world for all. Put another way, I believe that we need to graduate a generation of solutionaries so that our graduates, whatever careers they pursue, understand that it is their responsibility to ensure that the systems within their professions are sustainable, humane, and just.”

    • That’s great to hear that other systems (schools) see the need for us to reorient ourselves, hopefully not only for our immediate sake, but also for future generations For too long it’s been easy for people of the Christian faith to hide behind this idea of dominion. I am unfamiliar with Zoe Weil but appreciate you bringing her voice to the table.

  2. Mary Hess says:

    Wow — what a powerful set of songs to juxtapose. I’m not generally a Pearl Jam fan, but what a compelling and thought-provoking video. I can’t help thinking that both of these are a great introduction to our discussion, tomorrow, of a theology of the cross!

  3. Mary Hess says:

    Also, for people like me who are the greatest at hearing lyrics, here’s a transcription of the lyrics to the Nas piece: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/nas/theworldisyours.html

  4. Mary Hess says:

    Actually, I mean to write “who are NOT the greatest”

  5. Pingback: Tensegrities » Blog Archive » Evocative beauty, aching sadness…

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