Tuesday, November 29, 2005

EDUCATION FOR INDEPENDENT THOUGHT
- Albert Einstein

“Never let formal EDUCATION get in the way of your learning.” - Mark Twain, 1835-1910, American Humorist, Writer

“On the EDUCATION of the people of this country the fate of the country depends.” - Benjamin Disraeli, 1804-1881, British Statesman, Prime Minister


“EDUCATION is a better safeguard of liberty than a standing army.” - Edward Everett, 1794-1865, American Statesman, Scholar

It is not enough to teach man a specialty. Through it he may become a kind of useful machine but not a harmoniously developed personality. It is essential that the student acquire an understanding of and a lively feeling for values. He must acquire a vivid sense of the beautiful and of the morally good.

Otherwise, he—with his specialized knowledge—more closely resembles a well-trained dog than a harmoniously developed person. He must learn to understand the motives of human beings, their illusions, and their sufferings in order to acquire a proper relationship to individual fellow-men and to the community.

These precious things are conveyed to the younger generation through personal contact with those who teach, not --or at least not in the main-- through textbooks. It is this that primarily constitutes and preserves culture. This is what I have in mind when I recommend the “humanities” as important, not just dry specialized knowledge in the fields of history and philosophy.

Overemphasis on the competitive system and premature specialization on the ground of immediate usefulness kill the spirit on which all cultural life depends, specialized knowledge included.

It is also vital to a valuable education that independent critical thinking be developed in the young human being; a development that is greatly jeopardized by overburdening him with too much and with too varied subjects (point system). Overburdening necessarily leads to superficiality. Teaching should be such that what is offered is perceived as a valuable gift and not as a hard duty.

- NY Times, October 5, 1952


See also:
http://thefilipinomind.blogspot.com/2005/08/question-is-educate-for-what-first.html,
http://thefilipinomind.blogspot.com/2005/10/call-to-historians-history-and-liberal.html,
http://thefilipinomind.blogspot.com/2005/07/filipino-norm-of-morality-vitaliano-r.html,
http://thefilipinomind.blogspot.com/2005/07/common-good-developed-by-manuel.html,
http://thefilipinomind.blogspot.com/2005/06/democracy-and-education-noam-chomsky.html,
http://thefilipinomind.blogspot.com/2005/06/ang-sistema-ng-edukasyon-sa-pilipinas.html,
http://thefilipinomind.blogspot.com/2005/06/cultural-illiteracy-what-we-filipinos.html,
http://thefilipinomind.blogspot.com/2005/05/dont-know-much-about-history-in-order.html

"What we should seek to impart in our colleges, therefore, is not so much learning itself as the spirit of learning. It consists in the power to distinguish good reasoning from bad, in the power to digest and interpret evidence, in the habit of catholic observation and a preference for the non partisan point of view, in an addiction to clear and logical processes of thought and yet an instinctive desire to interpret rather than to stick to the letter of reasoning, in a taste for knowledge and a deep respect for the integrity of the human mind." – President Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924)

1 comment :

Paulinecfny said...

COMMENTS:

Education: master the fundamentals of math, science, reading, writing, etc. from K-7th grade. Don't continue to 8th unless performance is not at least 85%. Test math (for example) abilities for average, superior and advanced. Evaluate barriers for <85%.

Wisdom is a prerequisite to education.

Talk with Ifugaos, etc. regarding what wisdom is and what they consider wisdom to be. Examples of wisdom. Learnfrom them. After all they built the rice terraces, an engineering fete and considered one of the 8 wonders of the world.

Thanks
Pauline Santos