Saturday, July 7, 2007

Think Critically

Have you ever wondered why in the country of Ethiopia or Ruwanda or Iraq a two-year boy was 'sacrificed'? Why, just why you consider to be Hindu, Muslim , Christian or Indian, American, Russian , Nepali or whatever else you will? Or, for sometime think of something or someone you really believe in. Now ask yourself why and how did your belief come into being?
At some point of time you must wondered why even 'educated' people-poepl with doctrates and hard-to-get-d
egress-fall into ridiculous traps. Why?Possible because during their so-called education they didn't or were not told to ask fundamental queries. They answered questions in school about the lines on the world map separating countries but didn't analyse the hows and whys behind these lines;they mugged up the dates of wars but never pondered about the causes of war,and what they can do to eradicate them if they have to. Even moral values which were earlier cherished in formal education,and are again gaining importance, were more of an imposed drill,or handed down moral platitudes rather than being critical and promoting self-awareness. We've been given our commandments and various do's and don'ts but rarely are the reasons behind them critically discussed.
The modern mind is not trained to think critically and authentically. Our thinking is mechanical and purely functional. Those few original thinkers who still have 'a mind of their own' do so not because of the education they received in school but often, in spite of it. In fact, academic knowledge in schools today are largely superficial, much less a critical and aware outlook towards onself and the world around us. We've harly gone beyond scratching the surface of things. Cliched as it may sound,in countries like India, the education system is still colonial and geared to produce "babus" who are trained to handle files efficiently and not look into or to fundamentally question them. So, our education helps children to grow into unthinking, mechanical workers instead of helping them to develop into individuals with character, strength and independent thinker.


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