Archive for August, 2010

The Un-informed

During my high school days, I had a friend. He was close to me and we shared what we had then, a bicycle, a lunch box and some secrets. He was an average student and faired pretty well in the 10th grade. We didnt meet much after that. I heard from a common friend that he quit education and took over his dad’s business.

Last week, I met him accidentally. As usual, we reminisced our school days. I told him about my profession and he told me about his. I must say, he makes a lot more money in his business than what he would have made otherwise. On a casual talk, we got into an argument about education. He said, education was for dumb and to survive in this world, one has to learn the hard way. I was pulled to surprise when I heard this. I wanted to tell him at that moment, whats it like being educated. I am sure he will kill me if he reads this, anyways. Well, learning the hard way is good. But, “Education is for dumb” – not acceptable. And, to convey my opinion, this is what I said,

Ok, lets do this. Imagine you are at a snake park. You are looking at a huge king cobra lying just about 5ft from you, behind the fence. Its magnificent scales with yellow-black pattern and that lazy crawl, “It deserves to be a king” – you hear yourself say.

Now, change your imagination for a while. Think about yourself and the snake in wild. You wouldnt care to observe it so carefully, would you..? scared to death, you run. This, is when you think about the real power of the snake. The power to take away life. The power that makes it the king.

Well, the king and the slave apart, the point that draws my attention here is that, same two creatures looked at each other differently a few moments back and how, that one fence between them made a world of difference to their perspectives. Either way you call the snake a king, but for different reasons. Does it really matter..? yes it does, if you ought to…

This “fence” between them, is what I call education. It allows a whole new perspective of the world around, yet sounds so insignificant. It gives you space, time and knowledge to observe and understand the wild. A sense of security, makes the difference. It protects you, and exposes you at the same time.

It seemed my friend was pretty much convinced by this drama. I just remembered what was once told to me, “Education earns money for you”. You bet, It does. But, would my rich friend agree with it.? I doubt it though…