MyNews24 is a user-generated section of The stories here come from users.

Roux de boy
Comments: 7
Article views: 188
Latest Badges:

View all Roux de boy's badges.

Education: the search for truth.

17 August 2012, 09:46

"To know that you do not know is the best." – Lao Tsu

Education as it stands today is seen as the practice of teaching and/or receiving and giving instruction. Instructions, whether given or received is not what I would classify as a sound method of enlightenment, but rather a classic “I know best so listen up” approach. This to me is where the greatest failure of ‘education’ occurs, the thought that relaying knowledge to a younger generation can be passed down, to be remembered and then repeated once it is their turn to teach – a failure, as it is not knowledge that is being passed on, but simply information. Of all the great minds through our history, this process leads to their ideas and beliefs being corrupted by educators to curtail their own imaginings, giving children a degraded interpretation from a lesser mind.

The information ‘taught’ is an amalgamation of what is deemed important by a body of people who themselves assume it to be that way. In other words, children are being moulded to fit into the constricted and absolute needs of what society requires. I don’t want to mould anyone into what I think is right or wrong, for that is only my interpretation and opinions – I want to show them how to come about their own understanding and views surrounding that particular issue. The only fundamental answer I have found so far is based on my own meandering experiences: question absolutely everything. By questioning something, it not only makes an imprint on ones character but it resonates, it investigates, it is mulled upon and it becomes a reasoned process of thought.

“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.” – Bertrand Russell

Every ‘teacher’ I have ever had has told the class, “There is no such thing as a stupid question, please ask away.” Odd though, how hardly anyone ever did ask questions. The reason? Why question something that is distinctly written down in a book, which I am to accept at face value – as not doing so is detrimental to my own ‘education’ and evidently leads to low grades. I didn’t ask questions because I didn’t see the reason to. You see it is the illusion of truth of the transcendence of information from older to younger which quells the need to question. The education system itself is designed in such a way that those that do ask questions are seen as the outliers, people beyond the scope of what is taught and as such either ignored or subdued as to why their question is irrelevant. Given this does not happen across the board and there are teachers who practice what they preach – but in majority, and through my combined 16 years of ‘schooling’ and ‘tertiary education’ I had surmised that my questions are better kept to myself.

It is with this that I came to the realisation of the worth of questioning. From a young age I remember trying to formulate the answers as to why, what or how that particular idea is what it is, does what it does and means what it means. This unlocked an amazing amount of potential within myself. I was able to enthusiastically formulate my own answers, further compounded when my answers were shared by others – who evidently came up to their conclusions in the same manner I did – through independent thought. Most of what I hold dear today was not taught to me, but self imposed. Why is this? Why do I formulate my own ideas instead of adopt what is asked of me? I was encouraged to do so, not by my teachers or my family, not by friends or colleagues, not by some deity or some book. No, I was encouraged to do so by the idea of truth for oneself and shown the value of it by my parents through actively learning that truth stems from reality.

“There is nothing more necessary than truth, and in comparison with it everything else has only secondary value. This absolute will to truth: what is it? Is it the will to not allow ourselves to be deceived? Is it the will not to deceive?  One does not want to be deceived, under the supposition that it is injurious, dangerous, or fatal to be deceived.” ­– Friedrich Nietzsche

School was boring and university all but fond memories all not related to study material. Where is the fun in all of that? What is the point even? The idea that there is truth to my questions somewhere out there is a thought so exciting and liberating that I cannot but help imagine ways to find it. Life becomes a quest, one filled with adventure, trial and tribulations, outrage, defining and redefining moments, lies, experience and ultimately love of truth. It is this that I would have wanted teachers to instil within me; it is the complete serenity of hope for better or worse, it is the idea that I have within myself the ability to make my own decisions – irrespective of its label of good or bad.  Don’t tell me everything that is already ‘known’; ask me why I think it should be like that or even better yet show me something without prior knowledge and let me formulate my own method of doing, or reason for not. We had seven or eight years of true learning and then we get shipped out to this monotonous place where we are indoctrinated into someone else’s ideologies. I don’t blame those who do bad at school, or choose to drop out – I think with hindsight I might have wanted to do the same, for I understand that schooling is not where one learns, it is where one listens and/or reads and attempts to remember.

“It’s easier to fool people, than convince them that they have been fooled.” – Mark Twain

If I had to advise on a solution to our current education systems it would be the following: stop teaching. Stop blabbering on and on about things I will never remember. Stop telling me what it is I will need to know. Stop telling me that I’m closing doors by not participating. Stop thinking you know better. Stop showing me, stop talking to me, stop it all – and start listening. Ask me my opinion, give me yours and allow me to hear everyone else’s. What better way to learn than from the opinions of others, leaving one able to decide on your own accord as to what it is you feel is of importance? Want me to learn multiplication? Fine, but don’t make me write it down a million times, make me ask the relevancy of it, make me question its usefulness, make me tell you why it works. Education is not being told what to learn, it is the flowering of what you wish the outcome to be. Don’t tell me I need to learn this and that, tell me your desired endgame and let me help formulate the way to get there. It’s one thing hearing about experience and a whole other story partaking in it.

Let the children I one day father continue their trial and error learning curb, don’t tell them what the curb will look like or should look like. Let them experience rather than hear of or read about. Let the children become free of the need to compete on grades, fight on who’s the smartest or feel left out because they differ. Each child has his or her own ability, don’t drown it out in the bright light of others thoughts or achievements, celebrate it by explaining it. Encourage them to think for themselves, or at the very least to question everything. There is truth out there, we just have to let them find it – don’t try to provide it, let it bloom into its own majestic existence. I’d much rather them fail at school, than at life.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Why even the Constitutional Court...

On Monday the Con Court knocked back the application by the Africa Unite Party to challenge the IEC on the right to stand for public office, section 19. Read more...

3 comments 304 views
Submitted by
Celeste Maxime Lackay
Managers, Leaders and Politicians...

I have resigned from a job I really loved and held down with pride for 4 years.  Read more...

2 comments 308 views
Submitted by
The democratic right to vote

It seems that there are so many disgruntled members in the ANC, and some of them have resorted to negative stances, floor crossing and verbal insinuations are the order of the day.  Read more...

6 comments 309 views
Submitted by
Death Walks Behind me

Nothing makes me so mad as seeing a broad being mistreated, and this one was being mistreated in the most brutal way.  Read more...

8 comments 216 views
Submitted by
Desere Bosman Ray
The memory of Architecture

A few months ago our earth leakage blew. A bother of a thing to happen at any stage, but what made matters worse was the fact that it chose to blow on a Saturday morning.  Read more...

4 comments 253 views
Submitted by
LeboDang Macman
Oscar & Zuma: 'Let's play the bla...

What is it about us human beings that we are unable to accept responsibility for our actions? Read more...

6 comments 656 views

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now! - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25



E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

Digital Media & Marketing Association
© 2014 All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.