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Verstehen

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Created: April 4, 2002
Latest Update: April 4, 2002

E-Mail Icon jeannecurran@habermas.org
takata@uwp.edu

Advocacy in Understanding

Copyright: Jeanne Curran and Susan R. Takata and Individaul Authors, February 2002.
"Fair use" encouraged.

On Thursday, April 4, 2002, Stephen Chilton commented on the Hab List about the difficulties in interpersonal relationships, face-to-face and on listservs, in that we are each unique, have different agendas, and different values and priorities. He suggested that one of the most important goals of the list was the relationships we build on the list, and the ways we, who would study and comment on Habermas, treat one another.

This seemed to me very close to what I discussed with you in Letters to My Students: Hermeneutics and Verstehen. The essence of our moral and ethical values is seen in the ways we treat one another. Hard to imagine a Supreme Being who created us all boiling some of us in oil for eternity while others are blessed by cavorting about Paradise with Virgins. For one thing, I have difficulty understanding what happens to the Virgin, who once she serves is no longer a Virgin. For another, I cannot imagine a God who would tolerate the torture of boiling anyone in oil. But that is because I subscribe to a God of mercy and forgiveness and understanding. My values dictate the God I will accept.

I hope that Stephen Chilton will let me put up some of his prospective book for you. But meanwhile, he has put a draft of that book on his website: Ways of Relating.

More on this soon. jeanne