Now, as a student, ignorance is not a word I feel comfortable having thrown around so cavalierly. Carse, however, defines ignorance in three ways: ordinary ignorance, willful ignorance, and higher ignorance. Ordinary ignorance being unconscious of something because of ordinary circumstances, willful ignorance being the refusal to seek out information that could correct or reform a current idea, and higher ignorance being the continual search for a higher understanding with the foreknowledge that one will never know everything.
Carse explains that religion once promoted higher ignorance, but now fosters mostly willful ignorance. It makes sense- what with last weekend's supposed end of the world, that Carse makes this claim. So, how, as a minister, a Methodist minister even, will I ever be able to fulfill both my obligation to the doctrine of the church as well as facilitate this higher ignorance. Are the two intrinsically opposed, or can the two be reunited under the current system? This is what I hope Carse will address in the coming chapters: how a large system can facilitate higher ignorance on a meaningful level for individuals.