The Mechanism of the Failure of Education

What is education?
The training of Thought.

What is the failure of education?
The training of the wielding of a tool without engendering the understanding
      that one is wielding a tool:
The training of Thought without engendering the understanding of Thought.

What is the mechanism of the failure of education?
The training of Thought through a system of affirmation and reward
      that thereby trains Learner to consider the success of Learning
Only in terms of external affirmation and reward.

What is the result of the action of the mechanism of the failure of education?
The tendency of Learner to limit Perception
      to only that which can be perceived by and/or conveyed to Others
Which is to limit Learning
      to only that which produces results affirmable and rewardable by Others
And which is therefore to limit Life Lived
      to only that which is perceivable, understandable, and rewardable by
            and sharable with

Now we can understand why the fabled departure of Laozi is characterized
      as a sage riding into the desert to die
            heartsick at the ways of Man:
To those unaware of the mechanism of the failure of education,
      one who finds his way to generalized Love—
            that breadth of Life which, lived by One, cannot be perceived,
                  understood, shared, or rewarded by Another—
Must live in desolation
Must be outcast
Must somehow be evaluated and recorded and storied
In terms of Reward refused
Or unbestowed—
Of Failure To Have Taught
Or Failure To Have Learned.

Copyright © 2007 by David Newkirk. All rights reserved.