Are we educated enough!

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Arshad Malik
Erudition in terms of education is the primary construct for a growth-oriented and progressive society and humans turn out to be good and responsible citizens if they are educated. But, when we talk about education do we mean the plethora of subjective curricular exercises that comprise our “system of education” or do we mean something else. The general conception is that education is what all there is about learning at school, in colleges and universities and these days the conjectural “tuition centres”, while the true meaning of education is “developing an objective and rational understanding about things in general that helps us sustain ourselves through our lives”. Education is a system that evolves around the basic quest for pure knowledge. However the fact remains that we prefer to stick to the prior definition of education rather than the latter. We, in general, prefer to institutionally acquaint ourselves with knowledge – as submissive and rather passive characters – and thus the whole truth about the phenomenon of education gets watered down.
While we always ascribe our growth in terms of education to educational institutions and to qualification certificates, the truth is that education has got very little to do with educational institutions. Education is a process that we undertake or sometimes undergo as dynamic units of the society throughout our lives. Our education kick starts as we are born and continues throughout our lifetime eventually culminating when and individual dies. Here we can safely draw a line between being educated and being literate. Literacy is a human endeavor while education is a process of nature. Thus illiterate people are not uneducated. By all standards, a completely illiterate person could be very well educated and therefore a capable part of the citizenry, even though the state as an institution most of the times does not agree with this premise. On the other hand well read people sometimes turn out to very dumb and illogical. Is it, therefore, wise to judge a person by the degree of institutionally certified “acumen”? We might eventually have painted ourselves, as human beings, into a corner.
My experience warrants me that there is a vast majority of well-educated people out there who have had nothing to do with any educational institution. For all of us who happen to categorize ourselves as well-educated the lessons of life and of course that of death may still be farfetched. We might do better if we could undo the smallest portion of all that has been done to us during our schooling years or college days. I figure that if we would have let nature teach us all that there was to learn we would have better understood justice, humility, responsibility and the whole array of human values and value systems. I am not throwing around an opinion that literacy is not good, all I am saying is that it is not the only thing; it is not the whole thing. We need to understand the difference between literacy and education, because by far almost all educational institutions that exist in and around our society are focused on tyrannical approaches to subjective influencing of individual opinions and learning experiences achieved by means of a molded superstructure that we are led to believe is Education.
We, the people of the world are far too despondent. I believe that we have every right to be happy and full of joy and if we are not educated enough (in the real meaning of the term) we are bound to fail and falter at achieving a balance through life.

About Author

A journalist with seven years of working experience in Kashmir.

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