In its focus on Christianity Doubts and Loves is necessarily more limited in its immediate scope, yet its applicability to the more general theories raised in Driven is immense. What Lawrence and Nohria’s four-drive theory cannot do is provide mankind with a narrative. It can provide the paint, so to speak, but it cannot provide the art. With some two-thirds of the world’s population practising some kind of Christianity, the power of the traditional Christian narrative is without rival and offers just such a persuasive narrative. But, as Holloway observes in his conclusion, it “must be continuously subverted and reinvented if it is to have enduring life.” Christianity has strayed so far from Christ’s original subversion of organised religion that it must be shaken up, not just once but continuously and without end if it is to remain relevant and powerful. “It is not the strongest of the species that survive,” Darwin wrote, “nor the most intelligent. It is the one most adaptable to change.” Christianity, whatever it may be, is not comfortable with change. Holloway’s bitter account of the Church’s divisions over homosexuality attest too strongly to that. But change it must, or its mythic power will be lost.
We stand at a crucial moment in history, the history not just of the human race but of the universe itself. As Martin Rees, astronomer royal and fellow of King’s College, Cambridge, put it recently: “This new century, on this planet, may be a defining moment for the cosmos. Our actions could initiate the irreversible spread of life beyond the solar system. Or, in contrast, through malignant intent, or through misadventure, 21st century technology could jeopardise life’s cosmic potential when its evolution has still barely begun.” If, indeed, 2002 can be the year of unsealed minds, the year that unclogs our cultural, political and religious arteries, then it won’t come by ending government funding for faith-based education. Nor will it come from increasing it. An opening of minds will only come about by a recognition that, at our core, humans share the same basic drives, the drive to acquire, the drive to bond, the drive to learn and the drive to defend. Lawrence and Nohria’s four-drive theory takes on a new dimension when viewed from the perspective of eternity. Rees recognises the tremendous power that we now wield as a species, a power derived in no small part from the evolution and development of the four drives that Lawrence and Nohria postulate. By subjecting their theory to rigorous testing, institutions political, social and religious can take the first faltering steps towards rebuilding the crumbling frameworks whose ruins attest to their inability to satisfy all four of our most basic drives. By exploring the consequences of their theory we can hope to avoid the nullification of “life’s cosmic potential.” For the Christian Church the consequences are no less. Incumbent upon the world’s largest religion is the charge either to begin telling a story that once again has the transcendent power to make sense of existence, or to get out of the way. Although some will look to the Second Coming to effect this change, it is unwise, dangerous and unnecessary to assume that change and reinvigoration can only come from above. For both Driven and Doubts and Loves are ultimately hopeful that change, constant, reinterpreting and organic change can and will come from human energies alone.