One of the classes I’m currently taking is Theological Anthropology and the Cognitive Sciences. For those of you who don’t know what that means, and all your really read was “blah, blah, blah,” it means we are studying the relationship of humans to science, philosophy and theology. It’s really quite interesting. We’ll be studying such topics as person-hood, freedom, individuals, etc. These are all topics I love to think about.
In our last class we talked about the concept of the Imago Dei – or The Image of God. This is an important concept when it comes to theology and humanity. What is the image of God? How are humans related to this concept? Are other creatures capable of bearing the image of God? Is the Image of God relating only to the physical nature or does it pertain to the soul or is it a combination of the two? Or is it even needed anymore? How does the concept hold up when we consider evolutionary science?
Lots of questions and lots of theories.
The important point though, at least for me, is that something has to be a starting point for answering the question – who am I? The image of God is starting point for many people when they consider the question “Who am I?” How one answers the question has many repercussions. How does one treat other people, animals, and the rest of creation? How does one view the body? How do we view ethics and the way we act? Are we called to be stewards of a divine plan?
What I find is that answers to many questions are not as important as the questions. The questions will drive us to more questions, but rarely will we have solid answers that we feel fully comfortable with.
When it comes down to it, it’s the questions that matter. The answers really reveal what we believe, what we are willing to confront, where our doubts are, etc. Yes, answers are important. But I think the questions are more interesting more often. They give us an opportunity to explore, to challenge ourselves, to examine our beliefs, and do so much more. The questions drive the answers, but also drive more questions. When we get comfortable with asking questions, I happen to believe that we are willing to recognize that we don’t know the answers and that is ok. It shouldn’t cause us to stop asking, but really spur us on to ask more questions.