Tacit and Tactile Knowledge of God

TitleTacit and Tactile Knowledge of God
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsDemmons, T
Journal TitleJournal of Religion, Disability & Health

Abstract Knowledge of God for persons with intellectual disabilities: an impossible oxymoron? This paper proposes to further the work of disability theology by engaging with the doctrine of revelation-the Christian doctrine that describes matters regarding knowledge of God. Karl Barth's concept of co-humanity is considered alongside Michael Polanyi's understanding of tacit knowledge so as to begin to conceive of ways forward for persons with intellectual disabilities, away from Enlightenment-informed theories of knowledge, towards a theologically informed conception of knowledge of God. Further, this paper suggests that the use of the imagination and the arts may act as a hermeneutic of sorts for communication with persons with intellectual disabilities. The theology and epistemology of Barth and Polanyi, combined with more creative forms of communication, result in a theory of knowledge of God that is truly inclusive for the whole Church.



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