Bird Droppings March 26, 2010
Ignorance versus the journey
“If I want to justify my existence, and continue to be obsessed with the notion that I’ve got to do something for humanity well, teaching ought to quell that obsession and if I can ever get around to an intelligent view of matters, intelligent criticism of contemporary values ought to be useful to the world. This gets back again to ……The best way to help mankind is through the perfection of yourself.” Joseph Campbell
It has been so many years ago that I first thought my goal was to do something for mankind and in that effect actually to do or participate in some great event. However as I sit and wonder this morning I find in Campbell’s thought so often it is in the searching for and bettering yourself that we truly help mankind. Earlier I wrote today to a friend about trying to understand and reduce ignorance. It is funny how during political campaigns and issues ignorance is rampant.
“Unintelligent people always look for a scapegoat.” Ernest Bevin
“If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.” Derek Bok
Working with children it becomes interesting as each day you see pieces of ignorance fall away only to be there again in the morning as parents can rebuild during the night, I have called it the sixteen hour syndrome. Yesterday with a half day many children of teachers were around the building and somehow Mr. Bird’s room is a must on kids list of places to visit. Questions are nonstop about snakes, lizards and turtles. I save all of the sheds from my boas and pythons and label date and snake and then by chance have some good give aways for days like yesterday. Kids always want to feed something and I pulled out my turtle food a pelleted product that works great along with live food and green for most aquatic turtles. However it has a down side it really smells bad and I thought one little girl was going to puke as she fed my turtles. It turns out she was trying to get the boys to smell it.
“Ignorance is never out of style. It was in fashion yesterday, it is the rage today and it will set the pace tomorrow.” Frank Dane
“The highest form of ignorance is when you reject something you don’t know anything about.” Wayne Dyer
I live in a place which borders on ignorance almost on a daily basis and wants so terribly to cross over to the light. It seems those in power always want to keep those ignorant folks in the dark hence for example the Dark Ages back in the day. Most could not even read or write and those that could were in power. In today’s world it is money that dominates and holds dominion over others.
“Being ignorant is not so much a shame as being unwilling to learn.” Benjamin Franklin
“Naiveté in grownups is often charming; but when coupled with vanity it is indistinguishable from stupidity.” Eric Hoffer
Looking at politics Hoffer may be very right, every election we watch politicians play with words against rhetoric that sounds good to that group that is being addressed. I recall when the legislation to prevent the sale of assault weapons was up for renewal how ironic if in the midst of anti terrorism it would fall by the wayside and assault weapons can again be sold.
“The opposite of love is not hate; the opposite of love is ignorance.” Brian Hwang
“When I was fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have him around. When I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.” Mark Twain
In a search for knowledge for understanding so many roads can be walked. We can search in books, in schools, in our families, in life in general, but it must entail a search. For to assume you are there is to cease the journey, to cease is to assume you have reached the destination. We are born with a starting point, point A and when we die we have reached point B. It is that which connects A and B that is crucial.
“Life is about the journey not the destination” Steven Tyler, Aerosmith
I started with that quote yesterday or so and have used it so many times over the years; I need to put Aerosmith back in my CD changer for a few weeks. Funny thing in yesterday as I worked with some students as I just finished writing my daily sojourn I was emailing back and forth with our department head and Aerosmith’s greatest hits was playing in the background, maybe a coincidence. Of course I put it in the CD but you know occasionally a coincidence is just that. Who knows but the journey continues.
“Myth is the secret opening through which the inexhaustible energies of the cosmos pour into human manifestation…” Joseph Campbell, Hero with a Thousand Faces
Please keep all in harms way on your mind and in your heart.
“The real difficulty, the difficulty which has baffled the sages of all times, is rather this: how can we make our teaching so potent in the motional life of man, that its influence should withstand the pressure of the elemental psychic forces in the individual?”