Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school

Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school

“The Heart of Education”

Albert Einstein’s sentiment on education’s essence invites interrogation of conventional schooling. Beyond rote learning of facts and theories, are deeper values imbibed through classroom rigors? Does institutional training touch our core being, shaping who we become for life?

Pedagogic processes cramming fixed knowledge into young minds envision learners as passive receptacles receiving authorized worldviews. Once deposited securely into human storage bins, the contents presumably equip graduates for productive citizenship and employment.

But standardized packaging of curricula often fails quality control once unwrapped in lived complexities. Beyond base proficiency levels, little transfers from tidy academic abstractions into fluid realities. Worse still, the force-fed info-chunks carrying others’ perspectives often undermine self-understanding, intuition and direct seeing.

Clearly the vision of education solely for efficient workforce creation sells learners short on promises of fulfillment through economic participation alone. But societal cynicism regards commercial motivations as immutable reality rather than constructions open for bold reimagination. Before resigning thus or rejecting schooling, we may critically reexamine systems losing sight of core educational essence. For here lies the vital secret of kindling fiery intellects instead of extinguished spirits.

The Perennial Purpose

Stepping back, fundamental questions arrest attention. What defines ‘education’ beyond structured learning of society’s sanctioned knowledge? Why send the young into schooling for years instead of straight into careers assisting households or communities?

The bedrock has been humanistic values nurturing self-realization – developing innate faculties towards living wisely, creatively and harmoniously. Traditional wisdom worldwide framed the highest goal as aligning unique individual potentials to universal foundations. Through this conscious self-flowering , seekers manifested their latent divinity, lighting up worlds through awakened presence.

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While perfect alignment remains an ideal, education’s purpose includes awakening self-awareness and igniting inquiry towards truth. Schools were sanctuaries guarding sacred evolutionary missions – maturing vulnerable, impressionable minds into self-possessed adults guided by higher principles and purposes.

Divergence from the Path

Despite outstanding exceptions, mainstream schooling’s outcomes reflect systematic veering from the formative essence. Automated ‘child processing factories’ reward parroting set answers rather than original seeing, force-feed information without sparking hunger to learn independently. Far from shielding natural development, schools disrupt organic learning rooted in curiosity, relationships, meaningful challenges and real-world apprenticeship.

The obsession with individualistic competition and ‘success’ contradicts fostering cooperation, ethics and concern for collective welfare. Disconnected teaching of physics, poetry, governance as separate subjects prevents appreciating their unified grounding in profound natural order. Cloistered from authentic human experiences under excessive rules, youth absorb abstracted models lacking experiential authenticity and textured diversity.

With pure focus on annual headcount churn, system health gets judged narrowly through placement and graduation rates. Output quality concerns rarely probe whether years imprisoned did nurture students’ deeper faculties towards wisdom and service. Turning square peg youngsters into round holes for ease of processing marginalizes society’s responsibility to nurture them as-is.

Beyond Credentials

For those traversing schooling astically towards future security, relief accompanies successful exits. Parting gifts include memorized facts soon outdated and specialized frameworks with limited transferability to dynamic realities. Beneath overt lessons, inner worlds absorb implicit messaging about worth based on constant evaluation against standardized benchmarks.

Once in employment fields or specialized research, graduates soon discover ground realities differing vastly from assumptions. As practical exposure accumulates, theories fade into mental background or undergo radical revision through experiential data. Beyond initial placements, work life demands learning ever-new paradigms through changing roles and contexts.

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The true gold thus lies less in academic feats than lasting values emerging afterwards to steer life’s progressive unfolding. As sensations of panic or urgency fade, silent voices regain audibility – inner compass needles, authentic desires and wisdom of the body-heart-spirit. Raising steady careers or families provides emotional ballast towards standing upright as beings abiding by personal truth.

As seekers learn balancing pragmatic adaptations without losing soul essence, bookish abstractions may organically transform into grounded principles. The inward discipline developed through years of regulated curriculum finds expression through self-authorship. Freed from crippling burdens of formal assessment, graduates recalibrate educational journeys aligned with emergent inner destinies.

Reclaiming Agency

Transformational social change begins, as Gandhi urged, with ‘being the change we wish to see’. For in complex interdependent systems, inspiring demonstration effects outweigh piecemeal interventions. Acknowledging outdated worldviews underlying dysfunction, we may disrupt business-as-usual by embodying and modeling desired alternatives.

Revolution lies not in combatively resisting but creatively replacing existing models from grassroots. Schools brimming alive with enthusiastic participation need no authoritarian regulations. Mutually caring communities allow full freedom responsibly aligned to collective wellbeing. Where each recognizes dignity and divinity within all, none gets judged or marginalized.

Wisdom traditions of all cultures affirm that lasting external reforms require inner maturation first. Teacher-leaders walking the path before students model integrity in word, deed and spirit. Training minds or professionals alone pales beside nurturing awakened global citizens grounded in timeless values while urgently engaged with unique societal challenges.

With agency and wisdom restored institutionally, education may rediscover essence as sacred site for incubating potentials. Beyond structures codifying approved knowledge, transforming presences irrigate inner landscapes – towards blossoming of gifts for collective flowering. No longer hand-me-down inheritances weighed down by power structures, vibrant learning fuels burning aspirations.

See also Girls are weighed down by restrictions and boys with demands - two equally harmful disciplines

And the bright thread of inspiration passes once more from heart to hearts lit ablaze – with purpose, meaning, joy and radical hope.

Dear Readers,

Please note that the essay on ” Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school” provided here serves as a model example to aid students in gaining insight into the art of essay writing. It offers valuable guidance on how essays can be structured and articulated effectively. However, it’s essential to recognize that this essay represents just one perspective on the given topic. Students are encouraged to explore diverse viewpoints and develop their own understanding. Your feedback and engagement with the content are greatly appreciated as we strive to foster a supportive learning environment.


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