Tuesday, October 25, 2005

It's My Stupidity and I Demand More

I met a native American artist recently. In the course of our conversation he said. "My grandmother used to say, 'people are educated beyond their intelligence'". I think she was right. It's that quest to become more than we are, to have more than we have that pushes us beyond our natural capabilities. We are fed and eagerly devour new concepts and ideas often forgetting the consequences of such a diet. With education as with every opportunity comes responsibility. We are living in a time of not only physical obesity but also mental obesity, both with disastrous effects.

Don't get me wrong, education is a good thing. But that education should lead to more than a bigger paycheck, a larger home or a newer car. Besides the technical skills which our institutions of higher learning seem to be focusing on more and more, education should be focusing on the purpose for learning. We have forgotten that we are caretakers of this earth and the creatures, including ourselves, who inhabit it.

Shortly after making the world safe for democracy, America gave ourselves a hearty pat on the back and shouted collectively, "What a great boys are we". Speaking of democracy, Aristotle thought it one of the poor forms of government as it was based on self interest. What a concoction for producing the "me generation", a culture chock-a-block full of self confidence looking out for itself. But there's more to go into this mix.

It was the French and their revolution that over threw the church as the final authority. And in doing so the baby went out with the bathwater. The state became the final authority and in doing so that transcendence that political man couldn't mess with evaporated and politics became "the art of the possible". What is possible? Anything. God was dead. It must be remembered that our constitution was written when He was very much alive.

As it was pointed out in the "Federalist Papers" property is a primary concern in our government. But it was much in the American character that the Diety bestowed property to those who followed certain precepts. Now without getting into a religious rant, there must be something to that idea. And here's the choice which we have: we can either follow those immutable precepts on our way to happiness (after all that's what we all want) or we can make up our own "he who dies with the most toys, wins and obtaining those toys any way possible" concept. Either way, we're all dead in the end. It's the journey to that end that's important and the purpose of our education should be to show us the most pleasant way to make that journey.

So where do we go from here? I don't know. The "quantifiers" are are having their way and it doesn't seem likely to change. The educational system will continue as it has and the teachers will complain about the kids lack of respect. We will continue to consume until we probably burst. Government will continue in it's own ignorantly limitless, mindless bureaucratic follies. Ultimately the individual seeks to do the right thing, it's just that "the right" is whatever the individual chooses to be "right".

But then, maybe the Fabulous Furry Freak Bros. were right and, "It don't mean s***".


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. I liked this entry...

5:02 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home