Exiles from Eden: Religion and the Academic Vocation in America, Mark Schwehn (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993), 48f:
Consider the virtue of humility. Much of what passes for laziness or the proverbial 'lack of motivation' among today's students really involves a lack of humility, stemming in part from a lack of piety or respect for the aspect of God's ongoing creation that manifests itself in works of genius. I recently asked students why they had not thought through a particular passage from St. Augustine on friendship and loss. I knew, because I had by that time grown to know these students very well, that they cared very much about the matters that Augustine was examining. I had not realized, however, that some of my students were easily convinced on the basis of a quick reading of the text, that Augustine was simply mistaken or overly agitated about these matters. Others complained that Augustine was unnecessarily obscure. All of them dismissed the passage in a preemptory fashion.
Current educational theory would suggest, in the face of these student comments, that I had failed properly to motivate them to want to learn about friendship and loss or that I had not managed to make Augustine accessible to them. I had probably failed in these ways. But my students could have overcome my failings had they been sufficiently humble; had they presumed that Augustine's apparent obscurity was their problem, not his; and had they presumed that his apparent inconsistencies or excesses were not really the careless errors they took them to be. Humility on this account does not mean uncritical acceptance; it means, in practical terms, the presumption of wisdom and authority in the author. Students and faculty today are far too often ready to believe that Kant was just, in a given passage, murky or that Aristotle was pointlessly repetitive or that Tolstoy was, in the battle scenes of War and Peace, needlessly verbose. Such quick, easy and dismissive appraisals preclude the possibility of learning from these writers. Yes, some of these judgments may be warranted, but the practice of humility at least prevents them from being made summarily. Some degree of humility is a precondition for learning.