How to Write a Parable is a strong believer in respecting, practicing, and developing traditional literary, rhetorical, and imaginative skills. Inspiration for this is taken primarily from the biblical and Christian traditional teaching that God Himself does this same thing–He makes invisible things visible so that we can understand them, with the climax of this being the incarnation. Imagination-focused teaching methods attempt follow this same practice, in order to foster true understanding and transformation.
We are convinced that the imagination is the most important and yet most neglected factor in deep and transformative education and growth. Almost every other culture in history has had a rich imaginative traditions and practices of various sorts as well. Somehow technology has seemed to undermine these traditions and practices in current western culture. But we humans have a difficult time understanding things we haven’t seen, so in order to teach well it is extremely important to develop an ability to skillfully tap into the power of our imaginations.
Our mission is to develop and encourage deep and transformative educational skills and resources based on a unique understanding and focused use of the human imagination. We are rooted in the historic Judeo-Christian scriptural and theological tradition and focus our resource development for church-based educators and leaders, and otherwise Christian communicators, whether lay or professional.
Judeo-Christian Theological Background
The vision and inspiration of How to Write a Parable is drawn from a lot of issues in contemporary culture and educational practice, but at its deepest draws from the historic, Judeo-Christian theological tradition. We see ourselves as merely merely mimicking what the Christian tradition holds that God Himself has already done by appealing to and using our imagination in His communication and teaching of mankind in scripture, and especially in the incarnation of His Son. Images, and the appeal of communication to the imagination of mankind are found throughout the Old and New Testaments, for example:
- The prophets of old used extensive analogies and metaphors in their pronouncements and messages
- The psalmist turns repeatedly to the concrete and imaginable in his praises and songs
- God himself commanded His people to create both simple and elaborate symbols to aid them in their walk (e.g., piles of stones and the tabernacle)
- Jesus taught using powerful illustrations and parables
- As the pinnacle of this whole stream, Jesus Himself was sent by the Father to be born among men–Jesus was made man so that He might be an image to us of the Father; He makes the invisible visible, and the unknown known.
How to Write a Parable takes its deepest cue from these biblical underpinnings. But one doesn’t have to agree with this or even value it to appreciate what we are doing! Anyone interested in imaginative and creative educational resources and skills will find a unique friend and partner in HowToWriteAParable.com.
Imagination and Education Today
God has seen fit to fill many pages of scripture with image-rich passages encompassing narratives, symbols, types, analogies, allegories, and poetry. And it is most supremely exemplified in the incarnation of God’s Son. As Jesus said,
“He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9) because “The Son is the image of the invisible God” (Col. 1:15).
But almost every other culture in history has had a rich imaginative traditions and practices of various sorts as well. Somehow technology has seemed to undermine these traditions and practices in current western culture. But we humans have a difficult time understanding things we haven’t seen, so in order to teach well it is extremely important to develop an ability to skillfully tap into the power of our imaginations.
Paradoxically, this is especially true in our age dominated by instant communication and hyper-realistic graphic technologies. A return to forgotten imaginative arts is vital if we are to maintain and cultivate the slower, deeper, and richer aspects of the spiritual life as well as ordinary human life and society. And besides, they’re fun!
The How to Write a Parable Mission
While there are many ways to improve educational effectiveness by using the imagination and learning imaginative skills, How to Write a Parable is currently focusing on parable writing as a unique yet well-recognized skill that is especially helpful to educators, and relatively easy to learn.
Take a look at our flagship product, the Parable Writing eCourse and consider using it to invest in your own educational and communicative effectiveness. Or else check out the blog categories on the right side of this page for what might have some interest for you!