I’ve been thinking about ‘education reform’ for many years. Doing research, talking to teachers and looking at the most important curriculum that is being skipped over or entirely left out. A curriculum which would bring enormous change to the world we live in.
Confucius said,”Study your history and you may define your future.”
“In the age of imitation, many outwardly follow along with things and inwardly fail to clarify their minds. Even if they do great works, they are not ultimate. In general, it is the baseness and vulgarity of the people with whom they associate that makes them that way.
It is like the case of insects: if they gather on an ox, they do not fly more than a few paces; but if they stick to a swift horse, they can chase the wind and pursue the sun, simply because of the superiority of what they cleave to. So students should always chose carefully where they will stay, and always go with good people. Then eventually they can cut off error and bias, approach balance and right and hear true words.” – Zen Lessons, The Art of Leadership
Extraordinary. I could not agree more. History is full of examples of our ‘age of imitation’. Humanities trail through history reflects how we imitate what we think is ‘ultimate’. Dictionaries define ‘ultimate’ as ‘the best or most extreme of its kind’.
Our society has chosen to ‘fly only a few paces’. Look at our history of warring. And yes, we are the ‘most extreme of our kind’ and the ‘best’ of our kind. However, given our history, the majority of us do not ‘approach balance and right and hear true words’. We are still warring on every continent. Sickness and disease runs rampant. We majority have chosen to imitate a part of history that benefits only a few. And the ‘benefits’ are mostly unsustainable. We cling to a history which teaches ‘error and bias’. Inequality is everywhere. Poor choices which denies our true ‘ultimate’ human nature.
What does an ‘ultimate’ education look like? Shouldn’t our education reflect only ‘the best’ of its kind’? Isn’t it our species, as thinking beings, moral obligation to make it so? Education of this kind will heal the planet and its inhabitants; create well being, joy and harmony. This is what I want. Lofty thoughts? Perhaps. Perhaps not. You may say, ‘how the heck can we do that’?
Education reform begins with our creating government officials who create a consistent mandatory curriculum foundation throughout our nation based on the ‘human body system’. We need 100% of our citizens participating in their governing.
The foundation I speak to is a part of history we left behind and did not ‘imitate’. ‘Know thyself’. Why did we ignore our ancient scholars? They believed to ‘Know Thyself’ was important enough to carve the message in stone, (imagine the time it took to carve one letter), they did not have lightning speed communication. This message was carved over the mythical tomb of Apollo. These ancient sages surmised that to ‘Know Thyself’ creates a rippling effect. They believed:
“Self-knowledge is all-encompassing. What is learned on one scale of experience can be applied to all scales. It is the highest form of knowledge, surpassing all other knowledge. Self-knowledge is also timeless, which means that what is gained in one era, benefits all subsequent generations.”
This is the consistent mandatory curriculum foundation I want to see throughout our nation. Why?
Education World admits:
“The human body is the most fascinating and fantastic machine in existence. No one understands all of its many mysteries; and no single source can do justice to its many parts.”
How can our society know so little about the human body in the 21st Century? Well, it is understandable when our National Science Standards curriculum’s focus is:
“To address the critical issues of U.S. competitiveness and to better prepare the workforce, A Framework for K-12 Science Education proposes a new approach to K-12 science education that will capture students’ interest and provide them with the necessary foundational knowledge in the field.”
The first 14 words sums up the reason why we know so little about the human body system. Imagine what a different world this would be if we understood how to optimally maintain our bodies. It would change industries. Understanding how to optimally maintain our bodies would eliminate poisons in the world, our diets would be different, how we live would be in harmony with all life. Isn’t this what we want? Changing our focus in education will shake fortunes and will be fought ‘tooth and nail’! For once we understand ourselves (supreme and ultimate beings) we will not want what is being shoved down our throats.
A teacher friend writes:
“Learning about our bodies and how they work is one of the most important things we can learn in science class. I think I’ve learned more about it once I needed to understand how my body was malfunctioning (and that of my friends & family). There’s no standard that addresses “you are what you eat.” I wish I could create lessons about “stop eating processed foods because….” or “an acidic body, cancer, and you” or “there are wheat flour and sugar in everything you eat” or “eat organic or else.” You get the jest, I’m sure. Our 7th graders have been studying the different systems in our body this semester, but it really is just an intro-level. I was lucky enough to be given a lot of control over the curriculum teaching in bush Alaska so during biology I emphasized (read-spent more time on) the human body systems.”
I could give the reason why this has happened and is happening, however, most know and it’s a topic for another discussion.
Happy non-imitation trails!