You Are What You Love by James K.A. Smith (Takeaways #1)
Every now and then I come across what in my opinion is a 'top tier' book. A book far and above other books in its premise and beauty. "You are What You Love" by James K.A. Smith is one of those books. I'd like to share some of my takeaways from the book by lifting some key ideas and putting them in a few articles. This is one of what will be several posts on this important work.
-Every approach to discipleship and Christian formation assumes an implicit model of what human beings are.
- We are not what we think. We are what we want.
- We ignore the overwhelming power of habit.
- We love in order to know.
- Our default autopilot- the longings of the heart both point us in the direction of a kingdom and propel us toward it.
- You live toward what you want.
- Love is like gravity. It pulls you into a direction.
- The more virtuous someone is, the more they have an internal disposition to the good that bubbles up from their very character- the less they need the external force of the law to compel them to do the good.
- We can't just think our way into being virtuous. Virtue isn't acquired intellectually but affectively.
- Education in virtue is a kind of formation, retraining of our dispositions. "Learning" virtue- becoming virtuous- is more like practicing scales on the piano than learning music theory: the goal is, in a sense, for your fingers to learn the scales so they can then play "naturally", as it were.