Christian Spirituality/Knowledge.


What's the meaning of the phrase "knowledge is light" in matters of religion?


The phrase means that having knowledge of spiritual matters results in clarity of vision or right understanding. This right understanding is of an often unseen reality and is contrasted with the reality we sense with our physical senses. This knowledge is not primarily enumerated facts, but a knowing that is beyond facts, approaching a synthesizing understanding. It is akin to but not equivalent to wisdom in some aspects. To have the light is akin to perceiving the big picture, the interaction and thrust of forces behind the scenes.

Having gained this light, one's life in this world is informed and shaped by it. It allows us to see both the futility of physical striving and at the same time the value of a rightly lived life among other people. It allows a comprehensive view of existence so that we can hold, value, and correlate apparent opposites and conflicts so that our thinking becomes less and less dualistic and more cohesive.

This knowledge that is light must be right knowledge, not just any knowledge. It often is only possible to have it after years of reflection, study, and experience. In fact, to have it, may be a poor choice of words. It is better to say that it has you because once you have it - if it is right knowledge - you will not be able to ignore it or live outside it without considerable effort and hardening.

And so, to have (right) knowledge is to be illumined about and to live in the knowledge of spiritual realities and their interaction with the rest of existence.

Let me know if that helps, and thank you for writing.


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Hoyt Roberson


I can address any question dealing with Christian spirituality, spiritual formation or direction, and living in the presence of God.


MS in Ministry. Have provided spiritual direction, teaching, and counseling for more than ten years. Served as a congregational elder for ten years, providing pastoral counseling, instruction, and preaching. I am a member of our local spiritual directors group and have read and practiced extensively in the area of Christian spirituality. My library contains about 200 books on the topic from various perspectives.

Local spiritual directors group Local Emmaus community Local congregation

MS in Ministry Master of Counseling in Marriage and Family Therapy

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