Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Knowledge comes and then it goes, but wisdom lingers...

As I contemplate my impending return to the world of academia, and my fast and furious foray into the public university, I keep talking about how I'm "going back" to school. The truth is, I never really left.

In the two years since my last walk in a cap and gown, I've learned about ecclesiology, culture, homemaking, world politics, religion, family life and ethics. Those who say that graduation is only the beginning of a lifetime of learning-- they're right. And these are just things I've collected from neighbors, co-workers, friends and family. That list doesn't even come close to including the seemingly ceaseless study and ongoing discussions about theology and culture-- and everything in between-- that Gaines and I daily share. And then there's all those books (and blogs) I read...

In light of all my "knowledge-gathering," past, present, and future, I must keep in mind that knowlegde alone breeds pride and arrogance, but "the fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom."

Dr. George Grant reminded me of this in a recent entry (May 12) on his blog:

All talk of education is for us a reminder that we have only just begun to learn how to learn. It is an affirmation that though our magnificent heritage has introduced us to the splendid wonders of literature and art and music and history and science and ideas in the past--we have only just been introduced and that a lifetime adventure in these vast and portentous arenas still awaits us. Indeed, the most valuable lessons that education can convey are invariably the lessons that never end. That is actually at the heart of the Christian philosophy of education—a philosophy which provoked the most remarkable flowering of art, music, literature, science, and progress that the world has ever seen; a philosophy rooted in a desire for wisdom and understanding, not just knowledge; a philosophy focused on putting knowledge in context.

As I work to form a statement of my own philospohy of education in preparation for my first day of class next month, I find his thoughts extrememly helpful-- and humbling.

(Oh, and if anyone really cares, the title for this post is from a Dog Named David song. I miss those guys.)

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