In the CiRCE Apprenticeship Andrew Kern presented us with some of his insights under the topic: “On the artist knowing the logos.” His thoughts inspired my thinking and below is how, however insufficiently, I addressed one of his key points.
“We know the idea or truth when we embody it. Till then, we are groping for it.”
Teaching is often put in terms of conveying knowledge or skills to someone else; it is about the other, the student. There is something good and glorious in that. But I wonder if the desire to teach is also a selfish desire—in a good sense. Teaching is one of the best ways of “groping” for the logos of the subject of our knowing. We teach so we might come to know, not only that others come to know. And I think it is not just about the effort it takes in preparing for a lesson that one comes to know better, rather the very act of teaching, the moment of engaging the subject with another person, can bring a kind of electric excitement similar to the poet searching for the right word or turn of phrase. It is work, yes, but it is good work that can reward the teacher as well as the student—especially if the teacher has not given up the ultimate quest to seek truth, and also if the student enters in as a truth-seeker.
This, then, reminds me that there must always be at least two logoi for every lesson, the one being at the heart of the subject at hand, the other being the at the heart of what it means/looks like to be a truth seeker.