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The teaching that cannot be taught

When Martin Heidegger was asked why he wouldn’t use general media, TV, radio, schools, textbooks etc. to propagate his philosophy he would say that this new type of thinking simply cannot be taught. You can’t put it in a textbook, you can’t systematically study it, and it has little or no content. The new type of thinking can only be demonstrated – it is revealed in a conversation. You can only discover it.

Conversation, by nature, is a spontaneous thing. Any attempt to structure a conversation will lead to its death, ultimately. If you try to structure your conversations with your wife, or friends, or children you will get anything but an organic interaction. Until our theology becomes conversational – live interaction with God and each other – it will continue leading us into a dead end. True theology (and philosophy) is a live conversation. It may not teach anything but it can reveal something. It may have no systematic content to be analyzed but it could demonstrate something.

Take, for instance, synergy, which is the theological concept describing God’s way of cooperation with man. Catholics and Orthodox love the concept, though view it differently. Protestants reject it – as Luther did. Is it possible to get a clear answer to this dilemma using a purely academic theological approach? Each side will have its arguments. And you can argue about it endlessly. As has been happening throughout the history. But what if the answer to this dilemma cannot be not deduced but is revealed in a conversation with God?  Continue reading The teaching that cannot be taught

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