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4 Responses to “Better Distance Learning”

  1. Mark Elson says:

    Mike, can you elaborate your thinking a bit more on the statement “knowledge exists only as a function of living tissue”?

  2. Mike Metzger says:

    Sure. “Adam knew Eve” (Gen.4:1). This is the kind of knowledge (learning) that scripture esteems. Hands on. Experiential. Adam and Eve learned via living tissue – touching, feeling, experimenting. Experiment yields experience yielding expertise, making one an expert. It’s what Michael Polanyi called “personal knowledge.” Or, as Aristotle put it, “For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.” (The Nicomachean Ethics)

    The Western World, under the sway of the Western Enlightenment, generally describes the educational sequence as observation – interpretation – application. Observation requires no bodily touch (as in observing the moon). This is a kind of knowledge that is detached. It leads Westerners to describe the second “step,” interpretation, as when we “know the meaning” of, say, a Bible verse. Ta da! Knowledge. Once we know what a verse means, we then seek to “apply it to our lives.” Scripture never speaks of application this way. Nor does it describe “knowledge” according to this sequence. Imagine Adam, after enjoying nuptial union with Eve, asking her: “How does this apply to our lives?”

  3. Barnabas says:

    Is it not fair to say that there is in progression in enlightenment eyes that distances man from creation and received wisdom, in foolish pursuit of personal glory. The recording of language from oral tradition, detaching words from the vitality of humanity. An aesthethic detachment from the Hebrew to the Greek. Was it Einstein that said we discover what God already knows. With increasing data and deconstruction of the world we still lack knowledge, understanding and wisdom in our stewardship of the planet.Digitally mapping the analogue reality. Adam and Eve by thinking they knew better created a universal distance learning course. Choosing not to make sense of their full persona. Babel being the culmination of man’s ignorance at building success apart from our creative nature.Were we created to commune or compete ?

  4. Ed Holt says:

    This illustrates why the teaching hospital is such a successful model for education. Medical students enter with an avowed desire to become physicians, spend 4 years learning the science and history of medical care, then 3-6 more years of mentored hands-on experience before being turned loose on the public. This model began in 12th century Persia, the original center of evidence based medical science and training, and persists to this day. Modern education would benefit greatly from this time-proven example.

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