Is education the solution for any problem?

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Sushan
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Is education the solution for any problem?

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This topic is about the August 2021 Philosophy Book of the Month, Defining Moments of a Free Man from a Black Stream by Dr Frank L Douglas


He wrote about how empowered he felt when he learned his father was a lawyer. He once mentioned that Auntie Gertrude showed him off to her customers because he was a 'bright boy'. He also stated that he achieved A's in every subject, he was offered free lessons because he was a promising student, and he topped the country in his exams. He even won a scholarship.

The author battled with every obstacle he faced by doing his studies with highest possible results. Though he had some setbacks, he could achieve a lot.

Do you think education is the best solution for many (or any) problems that we face? Or is it just a single factor and there are many other things that have to be accomplished for success?
Last edited by Sushan on August 4th, 2021, 3:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: To add a description relating the topic to August BOTM Discussion
“There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers”

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Nick_A
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

Post by Nick_A »

Sushan
Do you think education is the best solution for many (or any) problems that we face? Or is it just a single factor and there are many other things that have to be accomplished for success?
The greater value of a good attracts the greater evil to correspond with it. Education has devolved into indoctrination. It is the way of the world.
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

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Nick_A wrote: August 4th, 2021, 12:43 pm Sushan
Do you think education is the best solution for many (or any) problems that we face? Or is it just a single factor and there are many other things that have to be accomplished for success?
The greater value of a good attracts the greater evil to correspond with it. Education has devolved into indoctrination. It is the way of the world.
Great question. The answer, unfortunately, is "Yes, but ..."
Yes education is the best solution, but since we can't agree on the nature of 'the problems we face', we cannot know the kind of education which could solve them. Nick A illustrates the dilemma well. The problem, according to Nick A, is that education has 'devolved into indoctrination'. No need to question that statement - 'It is the way of the world'. So for Nick A the solution would be to get people to understand they are just being indoctrinated rather than educated. This is where it gets tricky. How would Nick A get people to understand?
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

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Sushan wrote: August 4th, 2021, 3:48 am This topic is about the August 2021 Philosophy Book of the Month, Defining Moments of a Free Man from a Black Stream by Dr Frank L Douglas


He wrote about how empowered he felt when he learned his father was a lawyer. He once mentioned that Auntie Gertrude showed him off to her customers because he was a 'bright boy'. He also stated that he achieved A's in every subject, he was offered free lessons because he was a promising student, and he topped the country in his exams. He even won a scholarship.

The author battled with every obstacle he faced by doing his studies with highest possible results. Though he had some setbacks, he could achieve a lot.

Do you think education is the best solution for many (or any) problems that we face? Or is it just a single factor and there are many other things that have to be accomplished for success?
Education, meaning formal education, is the best... for those who take to the format of formal education, which is far from everyone.

The other issue is the definition of success. If you mean monetary success, that would jibe with formal education. However, if you use happiness, it would be less in sync with education.
"As usual... it depends."
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

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Robert66 wrote: August 4th, 2021, 5:47 pm
Nick_A wrote: August 4th, 2021, 12:43 pm Sushan
Do you think education is the best solution for many (or any) problems that we face? Or is it just a single factor and there are many other things that have to be accomplished for success?
The greater value of a good attracts the greater evil to correspond with it. Education has devolved into indoctrination. It is the way of the world.
Great question. The answer, unfortunately, is "Yes, but ..."
Yes education is the best solution, but since we can't agree on the nature of 'the problems we face', we cannot know the kind of education which could solve them. Nick A illustrates the dilemma well. The problem, according to Nick A, is that education has 'devolved into indoctrination'. No need to question that statement - 'It is the way of the world'. So for Nick A the solution would be to get people to understand they are just being indoctrinated rather than educated. This is where it gets tricky. How would Nick A get people to understand?
Hi Robert

IYO What is equality and how should it be taught in public education? Should equality be taught to indoctrinate slavery or to inspire freedom? Consider this quote: If we support freedom or statist slavery will determine how public education should be structured.
“Democracy extends the sphere of individual freedom, socialism restricts it. Democracy attaches all possible value to each man; socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number. Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.”
― Alexis de Tocqueville
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Robert66
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

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Nick_A wrote: August 5th, 2021, 10:24 pm Hi Robert

IYO What is equality and how should it be taught in public education? Should equality be taught to indoctrinate slavery or to inspire freedom? Consider this quote: If we support freedom or statist slavery will determine how public education should be structured.
“Democracy extends the sphere of individual freedom, socialism restricts it. Democracy attaches all possible value to each man; socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number. Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.”
― Alexis de Tocqueville
None of the above.

Stand up and walk out of the room. Don't turn around but walk back in, backwards. Forget de Tocqueville, equality, freedom, democracy, any other words rendered meaningless by overuse, misuse, and abuse, also forget rabbits counting to ten and anything else you would routinely think about. Now with your brain cogs turning in reverse, freely imagine education as an inspiring force, giving equally the power to think, analyse, and understand whatever life shows us.
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

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Robert66 wrote: August 6th, 2021, 5:11 pm
Nick_A wrote: August 5th, 2021, 10:24 pm Hi Robert

IYO What is equality and how should it be taught in public education? Should equality be taught to indoctrinate slavery or to inspire freedom? Consider this quote: If we support freedom or statist slavery will determine how public education should be structured.
“Democracy extends the sphere of individual freedom, socialism restricts it. Democracy attaches all possible value to each man; socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number. Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.”
― Alexis de Tocqueville
None of the above.

Stand up and walk out of the room. Don't turn around but walk back in, backwards. Forget de Tocqueville, equality, freedom, democracy, any other words rendered meaningless by overuse, misuse, and abuse, also forget rabbits counting to ten and anything else you would routinely think about. Now with your brain cogs turning in reverse, freely imagine education as an inspiring force, giving equally the power to think, analyse, and understand whatever life shows us.
Education can teach facts. It can teach how to read, write, and math. But who has the responsibility of teaching meaning? What good are facts without meaning and who has the obligation to protect against meaning devolving into indoctrination?

That is the problem. We don't agree on what supplies meaning so it devolves into indoctrination. Is there a way out of this problem that would reveal objective meaning?
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Robert66
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

Post by Robert66 »

Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm Education can teach facts.
It can do a lot more than that.
Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm But who has the responsibility of teaching meaning?
Parents and teachers.
Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm What good are facts without meaning and who has the obligation to protect against meaning devolving into indoctrination?
That is the problem. We don't agree on what supplies meaning so it devolves into indoctrination. Is there a way out of this problem that would reveal objective meaning?
Facts are useful. They help with objectivity.
We should all be on guard against indoctrination.
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

Post by Nick_A »

Robert66 wrote: August 7th, 2021, 3:04 am
Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm Education can teach facts.
It can do a lot more than that.
Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm But who has the responsibility of teaching meaning?
Parents and teachers.
Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm What good are facts without meaning and who has the obligation to protect against meaning devolving into indoctrination?
That is the problem. We don't agree on what supplies meaning so it devolves into indoctrination. Is there a way out of this problem that would reveal objective meaning?
Facts are useful. They help with objectivity.
We should all be on guard against indoctrination.
We know that the young now are starved for meaning. Some are even committing suicide. If we need meaning and don't know what it is we invite indoctrination. We invite the cult mindset to supply what is needed.
“The secret of the demagogue is to make himself as stupid as his audience so they believe they are clever as he.” Karl Kraus
Frankly I think it is sad that so many have become empty of meaning that they openly invite the demagogue. But this is what happens.

Simone Weil describes the cult mind in politics:
"When a man joins a political party, he submissively adopts a mental attitude which he will express later on with words such as, ‘As a monarchist, as a Socialist, I think that …’ It is so comfortable! It amounts to having no thoughts at all. Nothing is more comfortable than not having to think." Simone Weil
Do you think that those rioting in BLM or Antifa are doing it for logical reasons? No, rioting. killing, and destroying serves the need for meaning.

Rather than guarding against indoctrination, wouldn't it be more sensible to study what the human essence needs and how they acquire it? What provides meaning for the hole in the heart?
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Robert66
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

Post by Robert66 »

Nick_A wrote: August 7th, 2021, 9:11 am
Robert66 wrote: August 7th, 2021, 3:04 am
Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm Education can teach facts.
It can do a lot more than that.
Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm But who has the responsibility of teaching meaning?
Parents and teachers.
Nick_A wrote: August 6th, 2021, 10:28 pm What good are facts without meaning and who has the obligation to protect against meaning devolving into indoctrination?
That is the problem. We don't agree on what supplies meaning so it devolves into indoctrination. Is there a way out of this problem that would reveal objective meaning?
Facts are useful. They help with objectivity.
We should all be on guard against indoctrination.
We know that the young now are starved for meaning. Some are even committing suicide. If we need meaning and don't know what it is we invite indoctrination. We invite the cult mindset to supply what is needed.
“The secret of the demagogue is to make himself as stupid as his audience so they believe they are clever as he.” Karl Kraus
Frankly I think it is sad that so many have become empty of meaning that they openly invite the demagogue. But this is what happens.

Simone Weil describes the cult mind in politics:
"When a man joins a political party, he submissively adopts a mental attitude which he will express later on with words such as, ‘As a monarchist, as a Socialist, I think that …’ It is so comfortable! It amounts to having no thoughts at all. Nothing is more comfortable than not having to think." Simone Weil
Do you think that those rioting in BLM or Antifa are doing it for logical reasons? No, rioting. killing, and destroying serves the need for meaning.

Rather than guarding against indoctrination, wouldn't it be more sensible to study what the human essence needs and how they acquire it? What provides meaning for the hole in the heart?
I disagree with you Nick A. I think about my kids, both adults now, and how learned and mature they are compared to me at their ages. They learnt so much more at school, and I don't just mean facts but real understanding, critical analysis, meaning. When I was at (Catholic) school we were indoctrinated in all sorts of ways, not only religion, but versions of history, the relative importance of different subjects, what was allowed or disallowed, on and on it went.

I don't hear people beginning a sentence with 'As a socialist...' People usually have a lot of parts making up their identities. As for presuming that people have no thoughts at all, having already presumed they are one-dimensional, that is wrong and arrogant.

If I were black and in the US I would probably be rioting. It seems logical to riot when all else has failed and black lives continue to be taken without reason and seemingly without remorse.

If you think you are able to say 'what the human essence needs' go ahead, but don't be surprised if many disagree with you. If we were all part of the one flock we would be as sheep.
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

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The purpose of educations is not to prepare one for adulthood, but to teach one how to learn and research. Once one can draw on the work of others and learn new topics for themselves, then they will be ready for life. My school does not know what jobs will be available twenty years from now, but they can teach me how to learn. If one is diligent and works hard, then they will succeed in adult life outside of school. We can't blame the schools when people are unsuccessful. People are responsible for their actions too.
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

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Fellowmater wrote: August 9th, 2021, 2:45 am The purpose of educations is not to prepare one for adulthood, but to teach one how to learn and research. Once one can draw on the work of others and learn new topics for themselves, then they will be ready for life. My school does not know what jobs will be available twenty years from now, but they can teach me how to learn. If one is diligent and works hard, then they will succeed in adult life outside of school. We can't blame the schools when people are unsuccessful. People are responsible for their actions too.
The recent change in the way information is handled now has created interesting relative situations.

In my generation (old), facts were difficult to come by, so they were presented in school and had to be memorized. Thus why I have a huge amount of quasi-useful information in my memory. The beauty of the situation is that I know a lot of info and what I don't know is easy to look up now.

OTOH, kids nowadays live when there is little interest in memorizing information because 1) there is too much of it and 2) it is very easy to look it up instantly. Yet how to manage information is not universally understood, thus I assume isn't universally taught, which if true is a crime.
"As usual... it depends."
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

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Nick_A wrote: August 4th, 2021, 12:43 pm Sushan
Do you think education is the best solution for many (or any) problems that we face? Or is it just a single factor and there are many other things that have to be accomplished for success?
The greater value of a good attracts the greater evil to correspond with it. Education has devolved into indoctrination. It is the way of the world.
There are subjects like religion and language that can be taught in a manner of 'indoctrination'.

But subjects like science and mathematics are continously subjected to various researches and the subject matters which are taught to children are updated regularly. And in universities students are involved into these researches. So how can indoctrination happen in each and every field of education?
“There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers”

– William James
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

Post by Sushan »

Robert66 wrote: August 4th, 2021, 5:47 pm
Nick_A wrote: August 4th, 2021, 12:43 pm Sushan
Do you think education is the best solution for many (or any) problems that we face? Or is it just a single factor and there are many other things that have to be accomplished for success?
The greater value of a good attracts the greater evil to correspond with it. Education has devolved into indoctrination. It is the way of the world.
Great question. The answer, unfortunately, is "Yes, but ..."
Yes education is the best solution, but since we can't agree on the nature of 'the problems we face', we cannot know the kind of education which could solve them. Nick A illustrates the dilemma well. The problem, according to Nick A, is that education has 'devolved into indoctrination'. No need to question that statement - 'It is the way of the world'. So for Nick A the solution would be to get people to understand they are just being indoctrinated rather than educated. This is where it gets tricky. How would Nick A get people to understand?
There was an era in which students were prohibited from asking questions and they were chased out for not believing what teachers teach. But today the educational environments are much free and students can (and they do) ask questions. And the subject matters are frequently revised with the new researches.

There may be a difference between what the job market demand and what the children are actually being taught. But I do not see that as indoctrination.
“There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers”

– William James
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Re: Is education the solution for any problem?

Post by Sushan »

LuckyR wrote: August 5th, 2021, 1:41 am
Sushan wrote: August 4th, 2021, 3:48 am This topic is about the August 2021 Philosophy Book of the Month, Defining Moments of a Free Man from a Black Stream by Dr Frank L Douglas


He wrote about how empowered he felt when he learned his father was a lawyer. He once mentioned that Auntie Gertrude showed him off to her customers because he was a 'bright boy'. He also stated that he achieved A's in every subject, he was offered free lessons because he was a promising student, and he topped the country in his exams. He even won a scholarship.

The author battled with every obstacle he faced by doing his studies with highest possible results. Though he had some setbacks, he could achieve a lot.

Do you think education is the best solution for many (or any) problems that we face? Or is it just a single factor and there are many other things that have to be accomplished for success?
Education, meaning formal education, is the best... for those who take to the format of formal education, which is far from everyone.

The other issue is the definition of success. If you mean monetary success, that would jibe with formal education. However, if you use happiness, it would be less in sync with education.
Education can either be formal or informal. Passing your exams, getting a degree, and getting a job will be the formal path, and learning by experience and doing some 'informal' job will be a success as well.

When it comes to happiness, it all depends on the person, how and what he does. There are many professors who are happy to be in their research labs 24*7. That may seem as 'all work-no fun' to outsiders, but that can be the ultimate happiness (success) for that particular person.
“There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers”

– William James
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