Love humility as the mediating sister of all the virtues. She is our entry to all the pleasures of heaven and earth.

Good solutions II

A good solution accepts also the limitations of discipline. Agricultural problems should receive solutions that are agricultural, not technological or economic.

This second of 14 entries listing Berry’s good solutions that allow for “solving for pattern” probably provokes controversy. We want to solve every problem using technology or economics. But if the problem is pedagogical (i.e. having to do with teaching), then to solve it technologically isn’t possible. The problem in America’s schools is not that we don’t have the means to get information into children’s hands. It is that we don’t know the purpose of education. And we don’t know the purpose of education because we don’t know what a human being is. Until we figure that out, no amount of technology can solve our education problems.

I would recommend a close reading of the Protagoras and The Gorgias and a little more critical approach to the way Nietzsche intimidates the half-educated that govern our philosophy departments and from them our school administration. Our half-baked nihilism is neither necessary nor a good idea. And it isn’t very compelling to people who can read The Bully Anti-philosopher with a spine.

Public opinion versus the Christian school

Public opinion saddles the Christian college with inadequate reasons for existing, reasons the college cannot accept if it is to conceive and implement its task effectively and as a whole. Faulty expectations generate public relations problems and these add a needless burden to the problems of higher education today.

Arthur Holmes: The Idea of a Christian College

And what Christian classical school hasn’t felt that same frustration? Please notice the clause “reasons the college cannot accept if it is to conceive and implement its task effectively and as a whole.” Reasons the college cannot accept.

What are some of those reasons? Does public opinion also saddle the K-12 school with these reasons? How do you handle that?

How much we owe the Greeks

According to this astonishing article, it’s even more than we thought. Hospitals, art, grammar, Homer, math theory, and now we discover we’ve only just caught up to Archimedes!

What an astonishing people.

For seventy years, a prayer book moldered in the closet of a family in France, passed down from one generation to the next. Its mildewed parchment pages were stiff and contorted, tarnished by burn marks and waxy smudges. Behind the text of the prayers, faint Greek letters marched in lines up the page, with an occasional diagram disappearing into the spine.

The owners wondered if the strange book might have some value, so they took it to Christie’s Auction House of London. And in 1998, Christie’s auctioned it off—for two million dollars.

For this was not just a prayer book. The faint Greek inscriptions and accompanying diagrams were, in fact, the only surviving copies of several works by the great Greek mathematician Archimedes.