Most People Now 'Think' in Pictures

"We are arriving at a purely emotional stage of thinking. In order to begin reacting intellectually, we need the stimulus of an image. Bare information or an article or book no longer have any effect on us."

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Bert Perry's picture

If we didn't "think in pictures" back in the 1960s, explain the power of the picture of the little girl in Vietnam fleeing a napalm attack.  We may be in deeper than we were in the 1960s, but it's not an entirely different thing from what we've seen before, really. 

But that said, we might do well to consider whether we contribute to this with emotionally laden videos for "evangelism."  We are to be a people of the book, and we ought to carefully consider whether we ought to be contributing to our inability to comprehend that Book.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Larry Nelson's picture


Someone correct me if I'm incorrect, but didn't the use & popularity of stained glass in churches arise as a pictorial teaching tool in the age before (supposed) universal literacy?

If it's true that "a picture is worth a thousand words" (either then or now), perhaps using pictorial teaching tools (whether static or video) can be a helpful means to supplement (notice I did not say "supplant") the verbal preaching/teaching of God's Word.

Growing up, I recall a couple of times seeing pastors or evangelists using the technique of "chalk talks" to illustrate their preaching.  I don't remember such a thing being controversial then. 

Bert Perry's picture

The German word for education, "Bildung", literally means "picturing", and yes, does derive from the parish priests/monks explaining the meaning of pictures above the altar and in the windows as they relate to Scripture and the lives of the saints.  

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.