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Catholic Dictionary

Term

DOCTA IGNORANTIA

Definition

Learned ignorance. In theology it means that whatever man learns about God is infinitesimal compared to the infinity of being that is the divine essence, and must be expressed in negative terms such as in-finite, in-comprehensible, in-effable. The expression was originally the title of a treatise, De Docta Ignorantia, by Nicholas of Cusa (1401-64) to describe human insight into the divinity.