Friday, July 25, 2014

How do we understand rationality?

We live in a world were rationalism is prevailing. However, we could easily claim that rationality always existed. How we interpret rationalism is another case. Below is an exegesis given to us by Tatakis, who claims:

‘“Rationality” says Gregory Palamas, is truly “rational” when its organ is the “heart,” because the mind is “connected” – it is an expression of humanity’s composite nature. We have not paid enough attention to this very important patristic concept, which is opposed to seeing the mind in mechanical terms, because it holds that the rational faculty attains its fullness when it dwells in the heart. It is then that it expresses human personhood. These views are especially relevant today, when “rationality” prevails in almost everything and is emphasized as naked rationality alone . . . In Palamas we do not have a mind that thinks, but a mind that finds itself “in unceasing prayer to God.” It is a mind full of heart that finds the way to God. The mind, he concludes, “contemplates divine light . . . as a joyful sacred vision.” If one does not ascend to this height, if rationality is confined simply to the process of thinking, one can be a theological scholar but one cannot arrive at the vision of God.’[1]

[1] Tatakis, B., Μελετήματα Χριστιανικής Φιλοσοφίας, (Athens, Studies in Christian Philosophy, 1967), pp.90-91. 

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