I confess that I have not cleared a path through all seven hundred pages, I confess to having examined only bits and pieces, and yet I know what it is, with that bold and legitimate certainty with which we assert our knowledge of a city, without ever having been rewarded with the intimacy of all the many streets it includes.
Jorge Luis Borges
No one knows what he himself is made of, except his own spirit within him, yet there is still some part of him which remains hidden even from his own spirit; but you, Lord, know everything about a human being because you have made him...Let me, then, confess what I know about myself, and confess too what I do not know, because what I know of myself I know only because you shed light on me, and what I do not know I shall remain ignorant about until my darkness becomes like bright noon before your face.
Make peace with God. Confess what you need to and then forget about it. God says he will remove your sins as far as the east is from the west when you confess them and admit you were wrong. He puts them out of his mind and you should too. There is no sense beating yourself up over something that you can't change. Like the Serenity prayer says, "God help me accept the things I cannot change." Amen.
Emily looked over at Courtney. He was still asleep. For a long time she had thought that if you loved anyone you had to tell him everything: go to him and confess as in the dream; there could be no secrets. But now in the dark of early morning with the copper bottle cold against her fee she felt that this desire to tell all was simply an evasion of responsibility, a weakness in wanting to push on to the person you love something that is your own responsibility to solve. It would be easier for her to tell Courtney all about Abe, to come to him as he sat at this desk in the chill little workroom and confess, to hand the responsibility for her ambivalence to him, to let him settle the problem of her puny conscience for her. But I know, she thought, lying there beside him on Madame Pedroti's lumpy bed, that if I love Courtney that is the last thing I must do. If I love Courtney he must never know.
It is precisely this refusal of the Cartesian paradigm that characterizes Radical Orthodoxy, which seeks to reanimate the account of knowledge offered by Augustine and Aquinas. On this ancient-medieval-properly-postmodern model, we rightly give up pretensions to absolute knowledge or certainty, but we do not thereby give up on knowledge altogether. Rather, we can properly confess that we know God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, but such knowledge rests on the gift of (particular, special) revelation, is not universally objective or demonstrable, and remains a matter of interpretation and perspective (with a significant appreciation for the role of the Spirit's regeneration and illumination as a condition for knowledge). We confess knowledge without certainty, truth without objectivity.
James K.A. Smith