Thinking and Teaching

Thinking and Teaching

By Israel Galindo, Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning

Quick quiz: What philosopher said, “To think is easy, to act is difficult. To act as one thinks is the most difficult of all.”?

Answer: None. I pulled that quote out of a fortune cookie after lunch at a local Chinese restaurant. Not bad for a fortune cookie!

I experienced an existential moment of synchronicity as just that morning I was reading some of the most influential thinkers in history in preparation for my philosophy course. I was reminded again about what deep thinkers those early philosopher were. Deep thinking leads to deep thoughts and powerful ideas. Those early thinkers continue to be influential:

Deep thinking leads to deep thoughts and powerful ideas. And I think trivial thinking leads to trivial thoughts. The next time you’re with a group of people discern whether they are engaged in conversations of deep thoughts and powerful ideas, or trivial thought and banal ideas. If it’s true that we are known by the company we keep, consider if it’s time to get a new set of friends.

Helping people think, reason, and discern, while not easy, is the most important kind of teaching. Examine your own teaching:

Israel Galindo is Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning at the Columbia Theological Seminary. Formerly, he was Dean at the Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond. He is the author of the bestseller, The Hidden Lives of Congregations (Alban), Perspectives on Congregational Leadership (Educational Consultants), and A Family Genogram Workbook (Educational Consultants), with Elaine Boomer and Don Reagan.

His books on Christian education include The Craft of Christian Teaching (Judson), How to be the Best Christian Study Group Leader (Judson), Planning for Christian Education Formation (Chalice), and A Christian Educator’s Book of Lists (S&H).

Galindo contributes to the Wabash Center’s blog for theological school deans and to the Digital Flipchart blog.


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