Friday, June 01, 2012

The Importance of Ignorance

The truth is: I don't know.

I've studied theology, and engaged in prayer (which, as Evagrius of Pontus reminds us, shouldn't ever be separated), for a long time now, at least relatively speaking. And this is what I've found out: I don't know.

This used to irritate me. Frustrate me. Anger me. Infuriate me.

Not anymore.

The best place to be is "I don't know," because if I don't know (and I don't), then I can finally submit to God. Instead of trying to lord it over Him with my own knowledge ("but it must be this way"), I can say, like Mary, "I am the servant-at-hand of my Lord, let it be unto me according to Your Word" (do pardon the re-gendering of her prayer -- I continue to not be a woman).

It is a freeing thing since I no longer have to hold up and onto my "faith," which turned out to be little more than a flimsy set of rationalistic propositions. Instead, I can have a Faith, once for all delivered, protected by the Spirit through all ages (even though it is a messy business, Church history) that is not dependent on my rationality, but rather on His free gift of the Life who is Jesus Christ.

So, I read internet debates on points of dogma or praxis and I don't want to engage them. I'd rather listen, preferably to those who have proven themselves to truly bear the Spirit (the Fathers, many of the monastics, etc.), and from there I'd like to take my steps towards "being conformed to the image of the Son."

Ignorance is the only entrance into humility.

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