Welcome

Welcome to the Values Forum of the New World Encyclopedia.

New World Encyclopedia is committed to high levels scholarship and rigorous standards of fact and accuracy, but if it were nothing more than this, it would be unnecessary. The importance of New World Encyclopedia goes beyond mere scholarly excellence. The New World Encyclopedia endeavors to reintegrate facts with enlightened values that avoid supremacist and parochial impulses found in pre-modern value systems.

Keep reading the more full explanation of the forum, and then,

Please join us.  Post your entries, leading off with your own explanation the values issues in play in your contribution.

From the Enlightenment until now, there has been an ever increasing decoupling of fact and value, of knowledge and meaning.  This focus on fact has led to an explosion of knowledge, but the question of what it all means – questions of truth and wisdom – have so been bracketed as to be practically dismissed in the Sisyphus-like effort to achieve so-called “value neutral” knowledge.

This illusion declined in most parts of the academy some time ago.  There has been a gradual awakening to the obvious reality that values have not disappeared, and that there is no neutral point of view.

Post-modern scholars have recognized for some time that all knowledge is value-laden. The New World Encyclopedia is open and clear about the value system that underlies the information in our articles.

This Values Forum extends this commitment. A unified world of peace cannot result from efforts to ignore cultural differences or reduce all religious, spiritual and ethical questions to material, or political ones. Rather, genuine human progress requires that we engage each other in an open, vigorous, and healthy discussion of values. A good conversation allows us to identify points both of divergence and of harmony, and supports us in our effort to find common ground.

The effort to create a values-free zone has been tried and found wanting. What we need instead is a world of inquiry that is saturated with questions of value – a site for scholars and other interested parties to engage in discussion, debate, and hopefully enlightenment. The only requirement for contributors is to adhere to the site’s rules of decorum.

Articles may vary in length (but we think up 800 words reads well for our purposes). Topics can run the gamut from aesthetic to religious, from Middle East peace to Zen poetry.

Please join us. If we do this right, we all can both teach and learn from one another. We seek to become a community of scholars and thinkers who take issues of value seriously.  Maybe it’s just a dream, but perhaps in a few years we will be able to say, “Wisdom starts here.”