The Wisdom Pyramid: Feeding Your Soul in a Post-Truth World

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We’re facing an information overload.

With the quick tap of a finger we can access an endless stream of addictive information―sports scores, breaking news, political opinions, streaming TV, the latest Instagram posts, and much more. Accessing information has never been easier―but acquiring wisdom is increasingly difficult.

In an effort to help us consume a more balanced, healthy diet of information, Brett McCracken has created the “Wisdom Pyramid.” Inspired by the food pyramid model, the Wisdom Pyramid challenges us to increase our intake of enduring, trustworthy sources (like the Bible) while moderating our consumption of less reliable sources (like the Internet and social media). At a time when so much of our daily media diet is toxic and making us spiritually sick, The Wisdom Pyramid suggests that we become healthy and wise when we reorient our lives around God―the foundation of truth and the eternal source of wisdom.

Reviews

“The foolishness of the world sometimes feels overwhelming. The Wisdom Pyramid lifts that fog away, revealing just how full God’s world is with goodness, truth, and beauty. By turning to these sources, in proper order, the wise will find folly fading into the background, and the world will look like―and be―a different place. Wisdom, as this book reminds us, is right there in front of us if only we will turn our eyes upon it.”
Karen Swallow Prior, Research Professor of English and Christianity and Culture, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary; author, On Reading Well

“One of the most important books I’ve read this year! What if you woke up to discover you’d been eating only Doritos and Oreos for a year? When it comes to our ‘information diet,’ The Wisdom Pyramid reveals most of us essentially have been consuming junk food―with an ensuing onslaught of personal and public health crises. McCracken is like a doctor who not only diagnoses the source of our cultural malady with precision but also prescribes the cure: a change in how we consume knowledge that can promote healthy wisdom and love of God.”
Joshua Ryan Butler, Pastor, Redemption Church, Tempe, Arizona; author, The Skeletons in God’s Closet and The Pursuing God

“Brett McCracken’s The Wisdom Pyramid models the discernment he asks readers to practice. Thoroughly biblical, it is also informed by a wide range of sources of truth, beauty, and goodness. From Augustine to Jacques Ellul, Reformed theology to pop music, historic Christian hymns to modern poetry, McCracken models how to wade through our daily deluge of input, form unhurried habits of attention, and grow into the patience and humility of godly wisdom. I imagine this book becoming essential reading for families, student groups, and churches.”
Jen Pollock Michel, author, Surprised by Paradox and Teach Us to Want

“It has been said that ‘we make our tools, and then our tools make us.’ Engaging a wide cross section of insightful analyses, Brett McCracken offers profound wisdom about how we have more information, less truth, and a shrinking capacity for identifying truth. Well-informed, vividly illustrated, and aimed toward solid answers, The Wisdom Pyramid is a must-read.”
Michael Horton, J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics, Westminster Seminary California

“The first time I discovered Brett McCracken’s wisdom pyramid diagram, I knew he was onto something. I used it the next Sunday. Lots of people talk about it. Why? Because Christians desperately need a balanced diet of information. This book is amazingly helpful at both diagnosing a problem in contemporary Christianity and offering a holistic solution. The Wisdom Pyramid is clarifying and convicting. It’s a must-read guidebook for discipleship in our information-saturated age.”
Mark Vroegop, Lead Pastor, College Park Church, Indianapolis, Indiana; author, Dark Clouds, Deep Mercy and Weep with Me

“In an age of perpetual distraction, hurried commentary, and shallow conclusions, we’re quickly losing our aptitude and appetite for wisdom. Brett McCracken’s book is a much needed antidote for the dangerous ethos of the day. A compelling call to reorder our lives and reorient our hearts and minds around the shape of biblical wisdom―loving, listening, and looking to God―The Wisdom Pyramid is essential reading for anyone who longs for a more meaningful journey of faith.”
Jay Y. Kim, Lead Pastor of Teaching, WestGate Church, San Jose, California; author, Analog Church

“The digital revolution has transformed―not tweaked―the fabric of daily life. Never has it been easier to gain attention, or discover entertainment, or obtain knowledge. No wonder we’re addicted. But Google is a pitiful substitute for wisdom. Indeed, if we’re not careful, life online will make us aware of everything and wise about nothing. That’s why I’m so excited for Brett McCracken’s antidote to the inverted priorities of our age. If you live on an island without WiFi, pick a different book. Otherwise, The Wisdom Pyramid is for you. Few things reinvigorate the soul, after all, like exchanging the stultifying air of a Twitter timeline for the fresh sea breeze of an excellent book. And this is an excellent book.”
Matt Smethurst, Managing Editor, The Gospel Coalition; author, Deacons and Before You Open Your Bible

“It is genuinely disturbing to consider how we are being shaped by our current forms of information intake. Brett McCracken’s The Wisdom Pyramid is a godsend―a pathway back to sanity and health. I believe that the proposal offered in The Wisdom Pyramid is as important for our mental and spiritual health in the modern world as a proper diet is to our physical health. On top of that, this book is beautifully written, winsome, actionable, and hopeful. Buy a copy for yourself and lots more to give away!”
Gavin Ortlund, Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church of Ojai; author, Finding the Right Hills to Die On

“As a mother, I want my four children to develop the habits they need for a life of wisdom. They are quickly growing up into adults who will have to navigate for themselves the constant clicks and pings of life in our global, digital, information age. And so, I want their childhoods and teenage years―and our family life as a whole―to be intentionally formed by things that are both true and lovely. Although it’s not specifically a parenting book, The Wisdom Pyramid is a gift to parents, giving readers the essential tools to establish habits and priorities for a life of wisdom. This is a helpful book, and it’s also a hopeful book. It’s helpful because Brett McCracken writes biblically and insightfully on every page. It’s hopeful because it ultimately reveals the wise life to be the very good life.”
Megan Hill, author, Praying Together and A Place to Belong; Editor, The Gospel Coalition

“In an age of post-truth and information overload where Christians are constantly persuaded by AI algorithms and anecdotal absolutes, Brett McCracken winsomely pushes us past verified checkmarks and Facebook fact-checkers to bring us to the God who sits over wisdom and truth.”
Thomas J. Terry, Director, Humble Beast; member, Beautiful Eulogy; Lead Pastor, Trinity Church of Portland

About the Author

Brett McCracken is a senior editor for the Gospel Coalition and the author of UncomfortableHipster Christianity; and Gray Matters. He lives with his family in Southern California, where he serves as an elder at Southlands Church.

More About Brett McCracken

Brett McCracken is a writer and journalist based in Southern California. He is the author of Hipster Christianity: When Church & Cool Collide (Baker, 2010), Gray Matters: Navigating the Space Between Legalism & Liberty (Baker, 2013), and Uncomfortable: The Awkward and Essential Challenge of Christian Community (Crossway, 2017). He has written for The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Huffington Post, CNN.com, The Princeton Theological Review, The Gospel Coalition, Mediascape, Books & Culture, Christianity Today, Relevant, IMAGE Journal, Converge, Mere Orthodoxy, ERLC, Canon & Culture and Q Ideas. He speaks and lectures frequently at universities, churches & conferences. He blogs at brettmccracken.com.

A graduate of Wheaton College and UCLA (M.A. in Cinema & Media Studies), Brett currently works as senior editor at The Gospel Coalition and is pursuing a master’s in theology at Talbot School of Theology.

Brett and his wife Kira live in Santa Ana, California and are active in their local church, Southlands, where Brett serves as a pastor/elder. Brett loves movies, particularly those by Terrence Malick (or those with a Malickean sensibility). Other things Brett enjoys: Marilynne Robinson, the Inklings, Kansas Jayhawk basketball, the Kansas City Royals, reading and writing in coffeeshops, history, art museums, food, hiking, traveling, planning trip itineraries, writing TripAdvisor reviews and making things better by editing

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