Why Do Leaves Change Color? — A lesson from children about etiology, phenomenology, epistemology, and learning ethics from nature
I am of the opinion that you cannot understand the parable commonly referred to as “The Good Samaritan” without reading the introduction that the author gives you to clearly let you know what the parable is about.
Can we glean good moral conduct and principles from the narrative? Sure.
But the author of the Gospel of Luke has a particular trajectory in mind with this fascinating parable.
What’s the biggest secret to unlocking the depth and complexity of the Bible?
Actually reading what it says would be a pretty solid start.
Otherwise, you’re going to have to guess and make…
Psychologists say that the human brain has two major seasons of development.
The first is when you are young — the prenatal and early childhood stages. Psychologists frequently discuss the necessity of developing a baby’s brain when they are young and prescribe that you ought to read to them, play imaginatively with them, and engage their motor skills because, for those first couple years, you have a small window of opportunity to establish the foundation of their brain.
The implication is that whatever isn’t established in those early years, the opportunity to manifest such exponential development, is now gone; the…
If it is the case that one knows nothing of the ancient near East, nor of the complexity of cultic leadership amongst ancient cultures, nor of the variety and role of leadership in ancient Israel during the 2nd Temple period, nor of the relationship between Jesus (as a Jewish rabbi belonging to close proximity with the Pharisees) and those various leadership sects…
…then I suppose it would make sense to think that the priest and the Levite in “The Good Samaritan” are getting publicly shamed by Jesus.
Such is, however, quite unlikely.
What is more likely is that Jesus would…
If you are in a room with 100 people, what’s something you know more about than at least 80 of them?
This question is a simple way to get someone to consider what they are good at or, more specifically, above-average at. Often someone will express, usually with reluctance, a particular hobby or category of existence which they feel quite confident about.
But that’s a fair question because that question compares your knowledge to others. An unfair question would be:
“What’s something you know everything about?”
Knowledge, it seems, is a tricky thing. Nicholas Cusa is famous for remarking:
A mother’s day poem for all the women who have given birth to the world. Mother’s Day celebrates the necessity of women,
not just for life,
but for showing us how to live.
In some Jewish communities, there is a tradition on Passover that only women can light the candles to begin the celebration. Because, for a festival commemorating a new life for an entire people, they begin by acknowledging that, if it wasn’t for the women, they would have never realized that new life.
It is women who make life possible.
It is women who bear forth existence.
Thank you for an honest and revelatory take on this issue. I also appreciate how you acknowledge that it makes sense for some to be jaded based on world events of recent.
Your words remind of Sharon D. Welch who talks about the "Ethics of Risk." She talks about how large, complex problems can be daunting and so we must engage with these conflicts in the immediate, incremental scope of our lives and places where we are.
Her critique is that privileged groups who may "want" to see things change are likely to revert to homeostasis if it appears too…
Thanks for writing this Nino.
You bring up this issue of transcendence versus contingence (that finite humans cannot completely know God). Aquinas talks about this a good bit and it led him to the conclusion that there must be such a thing as general revelation.
You bring up special revelation and various sources of moral authority (tradition and scripture being the main two forms of moral authority that have a leaning toward ' special revelation').
In your question on transcendent existence, do you think that general (or natural) revelation is a credible way to understand transcendence? I'd be interested in your thoughts based on your experience with Aquinas.
There are lots of ways to read the Bible. There shouldn’t be as many ways to make authoritative claims about the Bible.
What is the difference between:
We need to look at some of these different ways to read the Bible and which ones are best to make substantial, formative claims for Christianity as a whole that should be authoritative and not just what you prefer or think.
1. Problems with certain approaches to the Bible — a source of moral authority, through special revelation, amongst finite and limited…
Why is it that if you put two people in the same room, there is likely to be an inevitable conflict?
Why do humans understand things differently?
The problem, for the most part, deals with our perspectives; which deals with how we know things and how our accumulated knowledge is not only quite unique to our specific consciousness but is also limited and finite.
There’s a story about Socrates where the oracle at Delphi concluded that he was the wisest person in the world. He couldn’t figure out why. Other people seemed to know so much more than him.