Thursday, August 20, 2009


One can only teach what one practices. In many respects this means we are all teachers. Our principles and moral views will influence our reasoning and our conduct.

To teach does not mean to merely give what we have but rather what we are. What we are should be Christ. Christ should be in our thoughts and actions.

Of course to speak of teaching we must consider what is meant by the term education. Edith Stein (St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross) defined education as the formation of the human person and notes that "the first fundamental formation happens within the soul".

The purpose of education is to bring what is already there in seed form to its full potential. Edith Stein describes the process of education as taking place on three levels. She writes that the development of the human person is based on the person's humanity, gender, and individuality.

Teachers, therefore, will pay special attention to the uniqueness of their pupil, taking into consideration their natural qualities, and abilities, as well as, their limitations. This is something parents will need to do as they educate their children. In fact, we will all need to take these into consideration when working and collaborating with others.

In order to have any influence on someone there must be love. "Love and trust are necessary rudiments for every educational influence. The teacher must love consistently thereby winning this love and trust."

"Truly supernatural forces are needed to offer such equal, mothering love to all, even to the unlovable, the difficult, the intolerable...especially to them because, indeed, they are in the most need of it."

(The Collected Works of Edith Stein vol. 2, Eassys on Woman)

Teachers shape mankind.

1 comment:

  1. St. Alberto Hurtado, S.J. says, "In order to teach it is enough to know something. But to educate one must be something. True education consists in giving oneself as a living model, an
    authentic lesson."

    How intimate and connected the Saints are to each other when following Christ... thank you for this special post.