Individuals –> Wisdom: Do not want ( a work in progress)

8 May

I’m working on a “new” old concept in education…. the generation of wisdom. 🙂 Today’s models of education are influenced mostly by societal values and desires, not the limitations of tools, not the teachers, not the systems, although each of the above is driven by societal values. The problem boils down to a one overall theme. Society, and as a mirror of society, individuals do not want wisdom… For most folks, rote recall of information is enough, for a few knowledge may be needed, and only for an exceedingly tiny number is wisdom really where its at.

Some situations to consider…. (economically driven)

Aviation:??Captain Sullivan, Captain Haynes, and other heroes of the aviation world, were generally at the pinnacle of their airline career, when bad things happened, and the exercise of wisdom was needed… They had achieved wisdom, through many years of banging their head against the wall… but society doesnt want a Captain Sullivan in the cockpit, or more so, they are not willing to pay for it.

Medicine: Most medical professionals fall into the knowledge domain…. if A, B, C, then answer D… and next patient. Even specialists who sometimes operate in the guru domain choose to spend much of their time comfortable with in and out 5 patients/hour rote knowledge protocols at hand. Economically, thorough evaluations of fewer patients a day would lead to a non-sustainable practice in short order, even if such was the only way to cure or prevent disease for said patients.

Manufacturing: Many employees in manufacturing operate in the rote information domain… most manufacturing systems are designed to grab a person off the street, and make them productive in short order… simplify, simplify, simplify, and reduce the need for critical thinking and judgment as much as possible. Economically, such practices produce by far the cheapest goods and services, at least in the short term. As a result, the days of the old grey bearded manufacturing guy, who can solve nearly any problem have ended for most. Its far easier to no-bid jobs even those slightly beyond ones scope, as the required knowledge base is non-existent, then it is to build knowledgeable employees through years of experience, much less develop true manufacturing wisdom. Of course, like many quick fixes, long term effects are another matter entirely… Much of US industry is still relying on the wisdom developed 40+ years ago… when that runs out, it will be interesting to say the least.

Some situations to consider…. (non-economically driven)

Online education: Many folks tout the huge opportunities in informal learning online… most visible of course is MIT’s open courseware. The thing is… its a rare person indeed who can take such and really run with it. Read more…


The Arts??


So why is this the case:??

Notes from?? the author presents societal fear as a major contributor to mediocrity. I think such is a big part… but far from the only part.

….is there not a certain security found in conforming to the mold that society tries to cast us into?

….there is a logic beneath it that I???m asking you to reflect upon. It is similar to the idea of not accepting responsibility for one???s own life. When persons can convince themselves of their own lack of power over themselves and their choices, they are also able to exempt themselves from guilt over unwise choices and reckless behavior.??

We persuade ourselves to discard any dreams that seem too far-reaching by convincing ourselves that we are being ???realistic???.

…., it tends to be disguised as ???fitting in??? or as having what might be termed a ???balanced life???. It is only later that people realize that they chose the??ordinary at the expense of creating a life that was in any way exceptional.

….??it is??because that is what culture encourages us to do. We can say all we want to about celebrating the individual, but the cold, bare, hard truth is that our world embraces normalcy and shuns everything else

….what we have to do is remain entirely aware of the??superifcial glamour that oftentimes draws us to that which is ordinary whether consciously or not.??


What might some solutions be:

Are shortcuts always a bad thing:

nearly everyone wants short cuts to a point, and then they stop, and almost always that stopping point falls far short of wisdom.






One Response to “Individuals –> Wisdom: Do not want ( a work in progress)”

  1. Jules May 8, 2010 at 7:50 pm #

    dig it. So often I hear my students talk about what they need to do (realistic) versus what they want to do (dream). My artists aren’t pursuing art as a study because, "they can’t make a living." Where will our society be if we don’t support artists?

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