One of the great challenges of post-modern times is how to interpret pre-modern texts. Especially, religious texts that remain so central to human civilization. How are we to approach such questions as, did Mary really have an immaculate conception? Did Lao Tsu live to 900 years old? Do we take these stories literally, symbolically, allegorically? What really was in the consciousness of the ancient writers?
In this intellectually rip-roaring dialogue, Rabbi Marc Gafni and Ken Wilber go into these questions of hermeneutics—the science and art of interpretation. It turns out that how we approach a text such as the Bible can instruct us on how to approach our own minds—and even the post-modern world.
Rabbi Mark Gafni and Ken Wilber discuss the dangers of relying solely on a text to define what is, putting the text between us and the absolute. In whatever language or culture we happen to be, the absolute truth of each moment is ever-present, and shines through all relative contexts.
How do we teach children about spirituality? Do we recapitulate the same myths we learned growing up? Or can we transmit some deeper layers of truth? Ken explores how an integral understanding of development can help parents think about these issues.
The way we interpret the meaning of words on a page is similar to the way we interpret our thoughts and actions moment to moment. But when it comes to interpreting your interior, how truthful are you? Are the voices in your head speaking from your highest self or your neurotic mother?
Go from your land, your birthplace and the place of your father's house." This sentence, which Rabbi Gafni paraphrases from the Book of Genesis, is one of the first ideas of a spiritual journey and trinity in text. You may need a few historical reference books to keep up with the Rabbi on this one!