“…tries to equip a child to join the Great Conversation, to understand and analyze and argue with the ideas of the past. Those ideas are important. Those words are important. Aristotle chose his terms with care; the reader must struggle to understand why, not substitute another phrase to simplify matters.”
~Susan Wise Bauer and Jessie Wise, The Well-Trained Mind
The core of this ‘Great Conversation’ is Truth. Words were granted meaning from the mouth of God. He spoke the word “Light,” and instantly its meaning was born.
One cannot separate words from their meanings without paying dearly for it. I may even be so bold to say that it is difficult not to sin while ignoring a word’s meaning: deception lies at the root of this kind of willful ignorance.
(I recall a certain former president calling into question the meaning of the word “is.”)
Not only do I feel the responsibility of teaching my children the meaning of English words and their use; I feel infinitely more responsible for equipping them with the meaning of the Original Words: what does God mean by
“Hear, O Israel: the LORD our God is one LORD”?
This is, after all, the axis upon which the entire “Great Conversation” turns.