The Wobbly Anglican Three Legged Stool

It is an important idea to keep in mind as  Fr. Tobias Haller points out at Anglican Centrist:

You may have heard of the Anglican theologian Richard Hooker who wrote during the reign of Queen Elizabeth and contributed to the Elizabethan Settlement. This was the elegant compromise that allowed Anglicans — even then split into disagreeing and sometimes disagreeable parties — to keep peace in their household. Anglicans respect three sources of authority — Scripture, Tradition, and Reason — and somehow this trio has gotten attached to the name of Richard Hooker under the title “Hooker’s Three-Legged Stool” even though he never referred to it as such. Hooker did not actually regard Tradition as an equal source of authority, and he placed Reason ahead of Scripture because, as he said, without Reason we would not be able to reap the benefit of Scripture at all — without Reason you wouldn’t even be able to read it! We also use Reason to inform our reading of Scripture, which helps to keep us out of the kind of trouble the Roman Catholic Church had with Galileo, or modern of fundamentalists have with Charles Darwin. So if it is a three-legged stool it is a wobbly one.

Anglican Centrist: Fr. Tobias Haller

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