I’m all for education.
If you are going to spend 30 – 50% of your life in school it better be teaching you something good. Something that is good for ALL life and allow us to all prosper and live fulfilling lives.
Learning to read and write are things we need to teach our children. It is what we teach them beyond that that I am calling into question in this blog.
Traditional Versus Modern Education Systems
Let’s look at the state of our world today to bear witness to exactly what schools teach it’s citizens. In my experience I notice that uneducated people are much more kind to the environment and more aware of it than educated people.
In traditional societies that live in harmony with mother earth, education involved learning from elders who taught compassion, understanding, and sustainability. People knew about their own ecosystems, the soil, how to grow food, farming, how to build a community, and leadership that is compassionate.
They learnt about their customs, climate, survival, songs, love, independence, balance, family, and harmony. This more ancient system of learning was rich and practical yet it didn’t teach anything that would be considered very useful today.
In our current school system, students learn very little about the traditional ways of learning. Instead it teaches competition, multi-tasking (how to deal with stress), how to get a job, how to follow rules, how to be a good citizen and how to pay off the debt incurred from gaining this very valuable education that teaches you nothing about how to survive in the real world.
The pillars of a successful education today, includes financial security and prosperity … at all costs.
You are a good citizen when you pay your bills ( so others can profit), borrow money (so banks can profit), become a spend worthy consumer, support big business and be a sponge for capitalist ideology.
It teaches people how to use corporate products in an urban consumer culture. It disconnects people from their roots, to the point where you literally don’t know how to survive in your own traditional environment.
Traditional cultures are dynamic, viable, sustainable, living but they are being driven out of existence. Culture is not trivial. Culture is a blanket of moral and ethical values.
When culture is lost and the individual survives you shatter the individual. They are shattered because they can’t go back to their roots…you cast them adrift in an alien world. Then blame them for not be successful in a structure that allows only a few to win.
You only have to look at the seeds of misery in the third world to find evidence of this system.
Modern school systems have created students and adults who have an entirely different relationship with the natural world compared to the traditional school systems of more nomadic peoples.
The modern world sees a forest as something to be cut down, sold and then replanted because they never went into a natural forest and spent time to consider the benefits of keeping it alive. Native Indians see the forest as having spirit and housing the wealth of plant and animal life that helps keep them alive.
Unfortunately, our world supports the modern school system and has done so for hundreds of years. It has gone on so long, unchallenged and in the process we no longer have that forest anymore.
The modern school system creates a human ‘monoculture’ across the world. Essentially the same curriculum is taught again and again and it trains masses of people – at a high cost – for ever scarcer jobs.
The diversity of cultures and unique individuals is being destroyed in this monoculture (Schooling the World, film 2010).
Do modern education systems really teach the worlds growing population ethically sustainable values that benefits all life forms?
Has the way we educate our youth run it’s course?
Is there a better way to educate people?
Should our education systems teach more diversity and connection to nature?
In the next blog I will explore whether modern education helps to eliminate poverty or does it actually encourage it?
If you would like to add your comments please do so below. I would love to hear from you.