I reminisce the days when I loved to use a stencil to write my name. I was a kid back then, and for some reason, it captivated me. Given the choice between my handwriting and the stencil then, I would have chosen the stencil. The boy or girl next to me would have written his or her name with the same font using the stencil. I wanted to recreate the same thing with the stencil because it made me feel secure. That was what my education taught me.
If I am to choose between a stencil or my own handwriting to write something today, the choice would be the latter, no matter how bad my handwriting is. I yearn for exclusivity now. For a matter of fact, I do know that my handwriting is unique.
The Enigma of Education
Ironically, we humans are forced to go through ‘phases’ of life that are designed by a system. We are born, sent to schools, colleges, workplaces, get married, give birth to a child, and put the child through the same ‘phases’ all over again.
Every morning, when I take a stroll, I happen to walk past the school where I studied. I see a lot of ‘learned’ parents sending their children to the school to get educated. None of these parents use the turn signal or the indicator on their vehicles when they drop their children in front of the school. These are the same parents who teach their students to ‘obey’ traffic rules in order to get an ‘A’ on their report cards.
The fact that these people who lack common sense send their kids to be ‘schooled’ does not make any sense to me. It is an enigma because in reality, education is just a failed system complementing another failed system. The latter is euphemized by the words “democracy” and “employment”.
What else would one call a system which blinds an individual and makes him believe that money is greater than morality? Successful?
Education versus money
The solution that most “experts” recommend for the elimination of poverty is education. Sadly, that never makes sense to me again. Education, employment and money are the main reasons for poverty. Consider the political scenario in India. The nation is run by a Prime Minister who has no formal education in anything. Under him, there are many Ministers, most of them who also do not have a formal education. The Civil Service officers who work under these ministers require a formal education as their ‘basic’ qualification. Followed by this, they are also obligated to qualify other examinations before they get a job. The salary of these civil service officers is much lesser than that of the politicians controlling them.
Education never eliminates poverty. It only gives an individual an identity card around an individual’s neck. He becomes a slave and toils under someone who has lesser knowledge than him for the rest of his life. If education is something that is referred to the formal system which is present at the moment, it would never buy anyone freedom. It would never eliminate poverty in any form. In the end, the rich control the educated.
Education Vs. Information
Education is perceived as a possession or a tool that helps a human being to live. It should, if not for the system of education that ruins its purpose. In the present, people look forward to education as a means of getting a degree, securing a job and getting ‘settled’. They just want to use it to be a part of a system. They bank on the educational system to get stenciled. Here, they are graduating, and they celebrate their graduation, instead of being educated. Students are trained to absorb information from whatever they see, read, or hear around them. This contradicts the sole purpose of education.
If people are really educated, they would be worried that they are forced into a system which is unnatural. We would start thinking why we have to spend our lives for a person and a cause we have nothing to do with. We would wonder why we have to give up the things we want to do just in order to get numbers into our bank accounts.
What Real Education Must Foster
“The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.” – Albert Einstein
Education is not something that stencils an individual into a systematic society. It must not be something that tells an individual to give up on his imagination. As Albert Einstein mentioned, education must promote imagination and enlighten an individual to research and understand whether the information provided to him is true or false.
What the current education system has produced are individuals who take less than a second to forward received messages on social media without even analyzing if it is true or false. Even a person with a Ph. D. is not educated unless he is able to analyze things of his own. He has graduated multiple times but has never been educated.
After I did complete my 18 years of formal education, I realized that I had been stenciled into a system. That is when I began to really educate myself. I am still educating myself, and I will certainly do that as long as I am conscious and alive. But for the rest of the world which still feels happy to be stenciled into a system, I have no say.