Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Why are you trying to blend in...

...When you were born to stand out? (What a Girl Wants)

We had a monster “Faith and Reason” lecture yesterday. It was completely amazing. I haven’t had to think that deeply since—I don’t know when. The professor who presented it was totally amazing, and although I did not follow it as well as I wish I had, it was still very intriguing to consider.

The question we were addressing was “What do I need to know and how can a liberal arts education help me know it?” the argument was from St. Augustine’s writings partly, and partly the reasoning of the professors. It was brilliant. He came to explain that a truly well done liberal arts education will always direct the student to God. That if the chief end of man is to glorify God, we can do that more fully if we have been liberally educated.

It is vital to understand that a liberal arts education does not necessarily mean the same thing as a liberal arts degree. Augustine said that the two things he would really want to know, if he wanted to understand everything, would be the character of God and the human soul. If we understand these two things we have everything else in the bag.

Proverbs tells us that the beginning of knowledge is the fear of the Lord. As we learn more, we fear God more, and we can learn more. Wisdom and knowledge are not exactly the same thing. Knowledge is fact, wisdom is how to use knowledge and apply it to our lives. A good liberal arts education will instruct us both in the facts (or hopefully we will already know that) and in how to use it. Our characters should be expanding as much as our minds—or more.

There was so much yesterday, I doubt this makes sense, but it was incredible. I hope to expound more about this later. Funny how a long, intense lecture can be so fascinating.

Life is ironic, isn’t it?


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