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Learning versus Knowing

“To be constantly learning sounds like a good thing. The Greek term for learning refers to the  “observation” that increases knowledge of the world... Of course, such learning is often useful and enriching. But the term “always” refers to the constant investigation that this method of learning demands. It aims to expand the boundaries of personal and human knowledge continually. But that motive prevents the commitment, devotion, and dedication to the Lord necessary for spiritual understanding.” (Fr. Basil)

“Imagine a scholar who spends a lifetime studying the resurrection of Jesus Christ and never attends a Pascha service. She might know more about the facts, information, and different ways of viewing the resurrection than all the other worshippers combined. She is committed to learning even more. Yet, by her never-ending study will never come to the truth of the Risen Christ…They know so much, yet they comprehend so little, because their knowledge remains in their heads and rarely reaches their hearts.” (Fr. Basil, Fr. Vladimir Berzonsky)

“Far too often today children are taught, both in school and at home, to equate truth with fact. If we can’t understand something and dissect it with our conscious minds, then it isn’t true. In our anxiety to limit ourselves to that which we can comprehend definitively, we are losing all that is above, beyond, below, through, past, over that small area encompassed by our conscious minds.” (Madeleine L'Engle)

“Secular scholarship provides the means for expressing experience but without the assistance of grace cannot communicate really redemptive knowledge...Countless numbers of professional theologians are awarded top diplomas yet in actual fact remain profoundly ignorant in the sphere of the Spirit. This is because they do not live according to Christ’s commandments, and so are deprived of the light of the knowledge of God….How do we comprehend and know. It is something other than a scientific fact or intellectual awareness. It is a revelation, a divine gift that illumines and transforms our intellect [nous]; and a reciprocal encounter, a personal bond with the personal God, who reveals Himself to us through communion with Him.” (Archimandrite Sophrony Sakharov, Orthodox Study Bible, Ephesians 3:18-19)

“Scientific knowledge serves our everyday needs, it facilitates horizontal communication and helps with the development of our civilization. Divine knowledge opens up to us the transcendental horizon, cultivates vertical communication, gives meaning to life and inspires our works and culture….contemporary scientific research has its origins in the monasteries of the West where monks who combined divine and human knowledge investigated the secrets and laws of nature with religious interest.” (George Mantzarides)

#FrBasil #FrVladimirBerzonsky #MadeleineLEngle #ArchimandriteSophronySakharov #OrthodoxStudyBible #GeorgeMantzarides

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