- Pathfinder

Reply To: Have you ever consciously or subconsciously used your faith to examine foreign policy? Was it harmful or helpful? Please elaborate.

Dominique Hoffman

My worldview is largely shaped by my background (education, work experience, travel). I was homeschooled most my life and went to a classical college prep program where I learned the fundamental of both my Christian faith, Enlightenment thought, and the intersection of both. My worldview developed in college, where I received a robust understanding of international theory and thought. Because of my background in classical education, I attained my undergraduate and masters degrees through a biblical lens. While most of the international theory I learned was taught from a secular perspective, my understanding of sin nature helped me conceptualize key theories and helped me form my own options. For example, I am a realist– I see state’s motivation as being rooted in self-interest driven by the insecurities of the international system indicative of the Fall. The one thing I would disagree with was when the professor stated theory is not important. I actually think international theory is a lens through which to view how world leaders see human nature. Most non-Western countries operate out of realism, the tenets of Western values which propel cooperation through liberal institutions are missing from most civilizational blocs. For example, Egypt is hosting COP27 and China hosted the Beijing Olympic despite both countries egregious human rights records. They engage in the puppeteer of international diplomacy through intergovernmental organizations to protect state interests without the implementation of international law. Ideas of intrinsic value and individuality, women rights, and religious freedom don’t exist outside Western influence. So to answer the question, religion is helpful in every way when it comes to examining foreign policy.