Tao Te Ching

The Power of Goodness, the Wisdom Beyond Words
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Education

With the Industrial Revolution, our educational systems naturally shifted focus and priority to training people to live and prosper in a new, industrial age of materialism, to learn jobs in non-thinking, robot-like occupations and lifestyles. As technology, automation, and actual robots developed, the value and number of these jobs decreased as information technology opportunities rapidly expanded. But educational systems in the common “rear-view mirrorism” style waited too long to realize and react to this cataclysmic shift. The much greater shift going on now caused by smart phones, tablets, social media, and fast online access to almost all of the world’s knowledge has quickly made most educational programs designed for job creation obsolete. The challenge for education now has perhaps increased many times more than any previous time in history.

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Quotes (151)

“Water reaches its goal by flowing continuously. It fills up every depression before it flows on… So likewise in teaching others everything depends on consistency, for it is only through repetition that the pupil makes the material his own.”

Fu Xi 伏羲 c. 2852–2737 BCE via Richard Wilhelm, Hexagram 29
Emperor/shaman progenitor of civilization symbol
from I Ching

Themes: Education Water

78. Water

“A man may fail in his education to penetrate to the real roots of humanity and remain fixed in convention. A partial education of this sort is as bad as none.”

Fu Xi 伏羲 c. 2852–2737 BCE via Richard Wilhelm
Emperor/shaman progenitor of civilization symbol
from I Ching

18. The Sick Society

“A man who halts at the beginning, so long as he has not yet abandoned truth, finds the right way… the beginning is the time of few mistakes… not yet influenced by obscuring interests and desires, one sees things intuitively as they really are.”

Fu Xi 伏羲 c. 2852–2737 BCE via Richard Wilhelm, Hexagram 52
Emperor/shaman progenitor of civilization symbol
from I Ching

Themes: Education

48. Unlearning

“Man’s duty is three-fold: To make him who is an enemy a friend, to make him who is wicked righteous; and to make him who is ignorant learned.”

Zarathushtra زرتشت‎‎ 628 – 551 BCE via Dawson
(Zoroaster)

from Avesta

“The wise… teach without saying anything… create without claiming… work without taking credit… accomplish without attachment.”

Lao Tzu 老子 604 BCE - via Shan Dao, chapter #2
(Lǎozǐ)
from Tao Te Ching 道德经 Dàodéjīng

“Therefore the wise teach without saying anything.”

Lao Tzu 老子 604 BCE - via Shan Dao, chapter #2
(Lǎozǐ)
from Tao Te Ching 道德经 Dàodéjīng

“Educate the children and it won't be necessary to punish the men.”

Pythagorus 570 – 495 BCE
(of Samos)
"The most influential philosopher of all time"
from Golden Verses of Pythagoras Χρύσεα

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“I look upon all sentient beings as my children.”

Buddha गौतम बुद्ध 563 – 483 BCE
(Siddhartha Shakyamuni Gautama)
Awakened Truth
from Dhammapada धम्मपद

Themes: Education

20. Unconventional Mind

“If your plan is for one year plant rice. If your plan is for ten years plant trees. If your plan is for one hundred years educate children.”

Confucius 孔丘 551 – 479 BCE
(Kongzi, Kǒng Zǐ)
History's most influential "failure"

Themes: Education

78. Water

“No trace of slavery ought to mix with studies… No study, pursued under compulsion, remains rooted in the memory.”

Socrates 469 – 399 BCE
One of the most powerful influences on Western Civilization

Themes: Slavery Education

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“Not to unlearn what you have learned is the most necessary kind of learning.”

Antisthenes 445 – 365 BCE
Creator of a religious tradition without religion

Themes: Education

“I would teach children music,physics, and philosophy; but most importantly music, for the patterns in music and all the arts are the keys to learning.”

Plato Πλάτων 428 – 348 BCE
from Republic Πολιτεία

Themes: Education Music

27. No Trace

“The fate of empires depends on the education of youth.”

Aristotle Ἀριστοτέλης 382 – 322 BCE
from Politics

“The way of learning is none other than finding the lost mind.”

Mencius 孟子 372 – 289 BCE
(Mengzi)
from Book of Mencius 孟子

Themes: Education

20. Unconventional Mind

“If filial piety and fraternal respect are made important principles of instruction in village schools, graying haired elders will no longer be on the reads carrying heavy loads on their backs and heads.”

Mencius 孟子 372 – 289 BCE via Daniel K. Gardner, Shan Dao
(Mengzi)
from Book of Mencius 孟子

Themes: Education Old Age

“In ancient times, when sage kings ruled, their government and education were egalitarian, and their charity extended to all. Those above and those below were of like mind.”

Liú Ān 劉安 c. 179–122 BCE via Thomas Cleary
(Huainanzi)
from Huainanzi

68. Joining Heaven & Earth

“The wise learn with reason, those of less understanding with experience, the most ignorant by necessity, and beasts by nature.”

Cicero 106 – 43 BCE via Shan Dao

Themes: Education

“Children are natural mimics who act like their parents despite every effort to teach them good manners.”

Anonymous -800 to present
Freedom from the narrow boxes defined by personal history

Themes: Education

“Illiterate leisure is a form of death, a living tomb.”

Seneca ˈsɛnɪkə 4 BCE – 65 CE via Arthur Schopenhauer
(Lucius Annaeus)

“Education and study confer no greater benefit than learn to avoid the wildness of extremes.”

Plutarch 46 – 120 CE
(Lucius Mestrius Plutarchus)

58. Goals Without Means

“It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows.”

Epictetus Ἐπίκτητος 55 – 135 CE
from Discourses of Epictetus, Ἐπικτήτου διατριβαί

38. Fruit Over Flowers
65. Simplicity: the Hidden Power of Goodness

“Mind is not Buddha. Learning is not the path.”

Nansen, Nanquan Puyuan 南泉普願 749 – 835 CE

Themes: Education

“The sage institutes education as a way to enable people to transform themselves, arrive at the Middle Way, and rest there.”

Zhou Dunyi 周敦頤 1017 – 1073 CE via Shan Dao
(Chou Tun-i)
from Penetrating the Book of Changes

“All those who would communicate the message of the source must be able to kill a person's false personality without blinking an eye”

Yuanwu Keqin 圜悟克勤 1063 – 1135 CE via J.C. and Thomas Cleary
(Yuánwù Kèqín)
from Zen Letters

Themes: Education

“She stretched them by the shoulders, pulled them by their necks up to the heights of other men. She did these things because she was a mother with a heart as bright as the sun and as wide as a lake.”

Genghis Khan 1162 – 1227 CE via Jack Weatherford
from Secret History of the Mongols, Монголын нууц товчоо, 元朝秘史

Themes: Education

“I don't want learning, or dignity, or respectability. I want this music, and this dawn, and the warmth of your cheek against mine”

Rumi مولانا جلال‌الدین محمد بلخی 1207 – 1283 CE
(Rumi Mawlānā Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Balkhī)
from Masnavi مثنوي معنوي‎‎) "Rhyming Couplets of Profound Spiritual Meaning”

Themes: Music Education

44. Fame and Fortune

“The sage seeks without seeking and studies without studying. For the truth of all things lies not in acting but in doing what is natural. By not acting, the sage shares in the naturalness of all things.”

Wu Cheng 吴澄 1249 – 1333 CE via Red Pine
"Mr. Grass Hut"
from Tao-te-chen-ching-chu

“It is Being itself that becomes the real teacher as we learn by encountering ourselves in and through others.”

Longchenpa ཀློང་ཆེན་རབ་འབྱམས་པ། 1308 – 1364 CE via Herbert V. Guenther, Shan Dao
(Longchen Rabjampa, Drimé Özer)
from Kindly Bent to Ease Us, Trilogy of Finding Comfort and Ease ངལ་གསོ་སྐོར་གསུམ་

“Learning is not merely the memorizing of isolated facts but rather a perennial search for values relevant to existence.”

Longchenpa ཀློང་ཆེན་རབ་འབྱམས་པ། 1308 – 1364 CE via Herbert V. Guenther
(Longchen Rabjampa, Drimé Özer)
from Kindly Bent to Ease Us, Trilogy of Finding Comfort and Ease ངལ་གསོ་སྐོར་གསུམ་

Themes: Education

“Do as we say, and not as we do.”

Giovanni Boccaccio dʒoˈvanni bokˈkattʃo 1313 – 1375 CE

Themes: Education

“Everyone who wants to know what will happen ought to examine what has happened: everything in this world in any epoch has their replicas in antiquity.”

Machiavelli 1469 – 1527 CE
(Niccolò Machiavelli)
from The Prince

“You cannot teach a man anything, you can only help him find it within himself.”

Galileo 1564 – 1642 CE

Themes: Education

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“Learn less, contemplate more.”

René Descartes 1596 – 1650 CE

26. The Still Rule the Restless

“As many sages speak through your mouth as were consulted beforehand.”

Balthasar Gracian 1601 – 1658 CE via Joseph Jacobs, #15
from Art of Worldly Wisdom

Themes: Education

“I have never found any who prayed so well as those who had never been taught how”

Madame Guyon Jeanne-Marie Bouvier de la Motte-Guyon 1648 – 1717 CE via Thomas Taylor Allen
from Autobiography of Madame Guyon

12. This Over That

“When you are young your mind is sharp and penetrating—after you grow up the thoughts scatter and gallop away [...] things you studied as a child are the light of the rising sun; the studies in your maturity a candle.”

Kāngxī 康熙帝 1654 – 1722 CE
from Emperor of China, Self-Portrait of K'ang-hsi

Themes: Education

“Cherish those who seek the truth but beware of those who find it.”

Voltaire, François-Marie Arouet 1694 – 1778 CE

Themes: Education

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“Teach your child to hold his tongue, he’ll learn fast enough to speak.”

Benjamin Franklin 1706 – 1790 CE
from Poor Richard's Almanack

60. Less is More

“He among us who best knows how to bear the good and evil fortunes of this life is, in my opinion, the best educated.”

Jean-Jacques Rousseau 1712 – 1778 CE
from Émile​

Themes: Education

“The power of instruction is seldom of much efficacy, except in those happy dispositions where it is almost superfluous.”

Edward Gibbon 1737 – 1794 CE
from Decline And Fall Of The Roman Empire

Themes: Education

“Paths of learning are necessarily divergent, they reflect the diversity of mankind.”

​Zhang Xuecheng 章学诚 章学诚 1738 – 1801 CE
(Chang Hsüeh-ch'eng)

“We accumulate our opinions at an age when our understanding is at its weakest.”

Georg Christoph Lichtenberg 1742 – 1799 CE
One of history’s best aphorists

Themes: Education

“I know of no safe depository of the ultimate powers of society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education.”

Thomas Jefferson 1743 – 1826 CE

“Well, knowledge is a fine thing, and mother Eve thought so; but she smarted so severely for hers, that most of her daughters have been afraid of it since.”

Abigail Adams 1744 – 1818 CE
One of the most exceptional women in American history

“There are two things children should get from their parents: roots and wings.”

Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von 1749 – 1832 CE

Themes: Education

20. Unconventional Mind

“All education is despotism… Go there; do that; read; write; rise; lie down… teachers, politics and modes of government poison our minds before we can resist, or so much as suspect their malignity. They deprive us of our vitality”

William Godwin 1756 – 1836 CE
Provocative and influential social, political, and literary critic
from Enquiry Concerning Political Justice

“Educate the senses to see the ordinary as extraordinary, the familiar as strange, the mundane as sacred, the finite as infinite.”

Novalis 1772 – 1831 CE

45. Complete Perfection

“All uneducated people are hypocrites.”

William Hazlitt 1778 – 1830 CE
One of the English languages best art and literature critics of all time

from Table Talk, 1822

Themes: Education

“Teachings... are given only for the purpose of realizing the nature of mind. Beyond this, the victorious ones don't teach anything.”

Shabkar Tsokdruk Rangdrol ཞབས་དཀར་ཚོགས་དྲུག་རང་གྲོལ། 1781 – 1851 CE via Erik Pema Kunsang
from Flight of the Garuda

Themes: Education

63. Easy as Hard

“On the diffusion of education among the people rest the preservation and perpetuation of our free institutions.”

Daniel Webster 1782 – 1852 CE
America's greatest orator
from Speech, 1837

Themes: Education

“You can only know what you have thought about and thinking has to be kindled like a fire. Reading can spark this kind of thinking when it forcibly imposes ideas on the mind foreign to it’s mood, beliefs, and prejudices.”

Arthur Schopenhauer 1788 – 1860 CE via R.J. Hollingdale, Shan Dao
from Parerga and Paralipomena, "Appendices" and "Omissions"

Themes: Education

“Do not be embarrassed by your mistakes. Nothing can teach us better than our understanding of them. This is one of the best ways of self-education.”

Thomas Carlyle 1795 – 1881 CE
"Great Man” theory of history creator

“Experience is the best of school masters, but the school fees are heavy.”

Thomas Carlyle 1795 – 1881 CE
"Great Man” theory of history creator

Themes: Education

“In every French village there is now a lighted torch, the schoolmaster; and a mouth trying to blow it out, the priest.”

Victor Hugo 1802 – 1885 CE
Literary pioneer, poet, and social justice provocateur
from Histoire d'un crime, 1877

Themes: Education

“Message to his son’s teacher: 'Teach him the wonder of books but also give him quiet time to ponder the eternal mystery of birds in the sky, bees in the sun, and the flowers on a green hillside. Teach him it is far more honorable to fail than to cheat.'”

Abraham Lincoln 1809 – 1865 CE

“Regard man as a mine rich in gems of inestimable value. Education can, alone, cause it to reveal its treasures.”

Bahá'u'lláh بهاء الله‎‎, 1817 – 1892 CE
("Glory of God")

Themes: Karma Education

“It is easer to build strong children than to repair broken men.”

Frederick Douglass 1818 – 1895 CE
International symbol of social justice

Themes: Education

20. Unconventional Mind

“Education does not mean teaching people what they do not know. It means teaching them to behave as they do not behave... [It] is the leading of human souls to what is best, and making what is best out of them.”

John Ruskin 1819 – 1900 CE
from Stones of Venice, 1853

Themes: Education

“Education: that which reveals to the wise, and conceals from the stupid, the vast limits of their knowledge.”

Mark Twain 1835 – 1910 CE
(Samuel Langhorne Clemens)

Themes: Education

18. The Sick Society

“Education: the path from cocky ignorance to miserable uncertainty.”

Mark Twain 1835 – 1910 CE
(Samuel Langhorne Clemens)

67. Three Treasures

“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”

Mark Twain 1835 – 1910 CE
(Samuel Langhorne Clemens)

Themes: Education

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“There is an everlasting struggle in every mind between the tendency to keep unchanged, and the tendency to renovate... Our education is a ceaseless compromise between the conservative and the progressive”

William James 1842 – 1910 CE
"Father of American psychology”
from Principles of Psychology, 1890

“An education isn’t how much you know… It’s being able to differentiate between what you know and what you don’t.”

Anatole France 1844 – 1924 CE
(Jacques Anatole Thibault)

Themes: Education

18. The Sick Society

“Nine tenths of education is encouragement.”

Anatole France 1844 – 1924 CE
(Jacques Anatole Thibault)

Themes: Education

67. Three Treasures

“One repays a teacher badly if one always remains nothing but a pupil.”

Friedrich Nietzsche 1844 – 1900 CE
from Thus Spoke Zarathustra

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“Not he is great who can alter matter, but he who can alter my state of mind.

Friedrich Nietzsche 1844 – 1900 CE
from Thus Spoke Zarathustra

“The great aim of our education is to bring out of the child every faculty that he brings with him, and then to try to win that child to turn all his abilities, his powers, his capacities, to the helping and serving of the community which he is a part.”

Annie Besant 1847 – 1933 CE

Themes: Education

“Anarchists know that a long period of education must precede any great fundamental change in society, hence they do not believe in vote begging, nor political campaigns, but rather in the development of self-thinking individuals.”

Lucy Parsons 1853 – 1942 CE
(Eldine Gonzalez)
Political activist “more dangerous than a thousand rioters”

Themes: Reason Education

“It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it.”

Oscar Wilde 1854 – 1900 CE

“Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.”

Oscar Wilde 1854 – 1900 CE

“The teacher is the one who gets the most out of the lessons, and the true teacher is the learner.”

Elbert Hubbard 1856 – 1915 CE

Themes: Education

65. Simplicity: the Hidden Power of Goodness

“Education has to steer its way between the Scylla of giving the instincts free play and the Charybdis of frustrating them... bringing up children is playing a game with them.”

Sigmund Freud 1856 – 1939 CE

Themes: Education

“Honest education is dangerous to tyranny and privilege: systems like the capitalist one use both ignorance and education as underpinnings for general faith in themselves as rulers.”

George Bernard Shaw 1856 – 1950 CE via Shan Dao
UK playwright second only to Shakespeare
from Everbody's Political What's What?

“The thing needful is improvement of education, not simply by turning out teachers who can do better the things that are not necessary to do, but rather by changing the conception of what constitutes education.”

John Dewey 1859 – 1952 CE
The "Second Confucius"

Themes: Education

“Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.”

John Dewey 1859 – 1952 CE
The "Second Confucius"

Themes: Education

“What is ‘education and enlightenment‘ if their dead-sea-fruit is a caitiff race, with rottenness in its bones?”

Arthur Desmond 1859 – 1929 CE
from Might Is Right

Themes: Education

“The aim of education is the knowledge not of fact, but of values.”

Dean Inge 1860 – 1954 CE
Christian mystic and philosopher

Themes: Education

“A child educated only at school is an uneducated child.”

Santayana, George 1863 – 1952 CE
(Jorge Agustín Nicolás Ruiz de Santayana y Borrás)
Powerfully influential, true-to-himself philosopher/poet

Themes: Education

“Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.”

W.B. (William Butler) Yeats 1865 – 1939 CE

Themes: Education

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.”

H. G. Wells 1866 – 1946 CE
A father of science fiction and One World Government apostle

Themes: Education

“It has always seemed strange to me that in our endless discussions about education so little stress is laid on the pleasure of becoming an educated person, the enormous interest it adds to life. To be able to be caught up into the world of thought—that is to be educated.”

Edith Hamilton 1867 – 1963 CE

Themes: Education

“education… will always have an element of danger and revolution, of dissatisfaction and discontent.”

W. E. B. Du Bois 1868 – 1963 CE
from Souls of Black Folk

“The instinctive part of our character is very malleable. It may be changed by beliefs, by material circumstances, by social circumstances, and by institutions... [education can] promote all that is creative, and so diminish the impulses and desires that center around possession [with] the growth of one individual or one community as little as possible at the expense of another.”

Bertrand Russell 1872 – 1970 CE
“20th century Voltaire”
from Mysticism and Logic, 1910

Themes: Education

“Without a gentle contempt for education no man's education is complete.”

G. K. Chesterton 1874 – 1936 CE

Themes: Education

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“Without education, we are in a horrible and deadly danger of taking educated people seriously.”

G. K. Chesterton 1874 – 1936 CE

Themes: Education

67. Three Treasures

“My path is not your path therefore I cannot teach you. The way is within us, but not in Gods, nor in teachings, nor in laws. Within us is the way, the truth, and the life.”

Carl Jung 1875 – 1961 CE via Sonu Shamdasani
Insightful shamanistic scientist
from Red Book, Liber Novus

“The real struggle is not between East and West, or capitalism and communism, but between education and propaganda.”

Martin Buber מרטין בובר‎‎ 1878 – 1965 CE

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“I do not accept any absolute formulas for living. No preconceived code can see ahead to everything that can happen.”

Martin Buber מרטין בובר‎‎ 1878 – 1965 CE

65. Simplicity: the Hidden Power of Goodness

“The crippling of individuals I consider the worst evil of capitalism. Our whole educational systems suffers from this evil. An exaggerated competitive attitude is inculcated into the student, who is trained to worship acquisitive success as a preparation for his future career.”

Albert Einstein 1879 – 1955 CE
from Monthly Review, 1949

“The unification of the teacher and disciple affirms the essence of all aspects of evolution.”

Helena Roerich Елéна Ивáновна Рéрих 1879 – 1955 CE

“I hope that you will possess yourselves of money enough to travel and to idle, to contemplate the future or the past of the world, to dream over books and loiter at street corners and let the line of thought dip deep into the stream”

Virginia Woolf 1882 – 1941 CE

Themes: Education Money

“Education: the inculcation of the incomprehensible into the indifferent by the incompetent.”

John Maynard Keynes 1883 – 1946 CE
Revolutionary economist credited with saving capitalism

Themes: Education

“The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind.”

Kahlil Gibran 1883 – 1931 CE

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“I am convinced that every effort must be made in childhood to teach the young to use their own minds. For one thing is sure: If they don't make up their minds, someone will do it for them.”

Eleanor Roosevelt 1884 – 1962 CE

Themes: Education

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“If equality of educational opportunity can be established, democracy will be real and justified.”

Will (and Ariel) Durant 1885 – 1981 CE
from Lessons of History

“Real education must ultimately be limited to men who insist on knowing. The rest is mere sheep herding.”

Ezra Pound 1885 – 1972 CE

“Our schools are the open sesame to Utopia... There is nothing that man might not do if our splendid organization of schools and universities were properly developed and properly manned, and directed intelligently to the reconstruction of human character.”

Will Durant 1885 – 1981 CE
Philosophy apostle and popularizer of history's lessons
from The Story of Philosophy, 1926

Themes: Education

“As education spreads, theologies lose credence, and receive an external conformity without influence upon conduct or hope”

Will (and Ariel) Durant 1885 – 1981 CE
from Lessons of History

“Consider education not as the painful accumulation of facts... nor merely the preparation of the individual to earn his keep... but as the transmission of our [world's] mental, moral, technical, and aesthetic heritage”

Will (and Ariel) Durant 1885 – 1981 CE
from Lessons of History

Themes: Education

“Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.”

Will (and Ariel) Durant 1885 – 1981 CE

38. Fruit Over Flowers

“History is an excellent teacher with few pupils.”

Will (and Ariel) Durant 1885 – 1981 CE

“Next to travel, the best education is history, which is travel extended into the past.”

Will (and Ariel) Durant 1885 – 1981 CE

“Let woman out of the home, let man into it, should be the aim of education. The home needs man, and the world outside needs woman.”

Pearl Buck 1892 – 1973 CE

68. Joining Heaven & Earth

“Racism is the product of tribalism and ignorance and both are falling victim to communications and world-around literacy.”

Buckminster Fuller 1895 – 1983 CE

“We as an economic society are going to have to pay our whole population to go to school and pay it to stay at school.”

Buckminster Fuller 1895 – 1983 CE

Themes: Education

“The function of education is to help you from childhood not to imitate anybody, but be yourself all the time.”

Krishnamurti 1895 – 1986 CE
(Jiddu Krishnamurti)

Themes: Education

“There is no end to education…the whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning.”

Krishnamurti 1895 – 1986 CE
(Jiddu Krishnamurti)

Themes: Education

“You may earn degrees, you may have a series of letters after your name and land a good job, but then what? What is the point of it all if in the process your mind becomes dull, weary, stupid?”

Krishnamurti 1895 – 1986 CE
(Jiddu Krishnamurti)

Themes: Education

“True teaching can be on an individual basis only. The same medicine cannot be prescribed for all.”

Nisargadatta Maharaj 1897 – 1981 CE via Maurice Frydman
Householder guru of non-duality
from I Am That

“Education is the transmission of civilization.”

Ariel Durant 1898 – 1981 CE
(Chaya Kaufman)

“The object of the educational system, taken as a whole, is not to produce hands for industry or to teach the young how to make a living. It is to produce responsible citizens”

Robert Hutchins 1899 – 1977 CE
(Robert Maynard Hutchins)
from The Great Conversation

Themes: Education

“The products of American high schools are illiterate; and a degree from a famous college or university is no guarantee that the graduate is in any better case. One of the most remarkable features of American society is that the difference between the ‘uneducated’ and the ‘educated’ is so slight.”

Robert Hutchins 1899 – 1977 CE
(Robert Maynard Hutchins)
from The Great Conversation

Themes: Education

“Many societies have educated their male children on the simple device of teaching them not to be women.”

Margaret Mead 1901 – 1978 CE

“his parents kept him out of school… Going to a white school and walking a medicine man’s road, you can’t do both.”

John Fire Lame Deer 1903 – 1976 CE via Richard Erdoes
from Lame Deer, Seeker of Visions

Themes: Education

20. Unconventional Mind

“We shouldn’t see some as sharp and others as dull. By treating all children without discrimination, we enable them to see all beings as equal.”

Shunryu Suzuki Roshi 1904 – 1971 CE

20. Unconventional Mind
42. Children of the Way

“The purpose of education should be to lead people out of the dark wood of meaninglessness, purposelessness, drift, and indulgence, up a mountain where there can be gained the truth that makes you free.”

E. F. Schumacher 1911 – 1977 CE via Shan Dao
The “People's Economist”
from Good Work

Themes: Education

“The real task of education is not education for work, but education for leisure... education for the sake of leading us out of the dark wood of egoentricity, pettiness, and worldly ignorance”

E. F. Schumacher 1911 – 1977 CE
The “People's Economist”
from Good Work

Themes: Education

“Institutions are not pretty. Show me a pretty government. Healing is wonderful, but the American Medical Association? Learning is wonderful, but universities? The same is true for religion... religion is institutionalized spirituality.”

Huston Smith 1919 – 2016 CE

“One reason education undoes belief is its teaching of evolution… more loss of religious faith can be traced to the theory of evolution than to anything else.”

Huston Smith 1919 – 2016 CE

“We are dealing with the best-educated generation in history. But they've got a brain dressed up with nowhere to go.”

Timothy Leary 1920 – 1996 CE
Pioneering psychonaut, performing philosopher, and counter-cultural hero

Themes: Education

“To a very great degree, school is a place where children learn to be stupid.”

John Holt 1923 – 1985 CE
from Teach Your Own

Themes: Education

“It's not that I feel that school is a good idea gone wrong, but a wrong idea from the word go. It's a nutty notion that we can have a place where nothing but learning happens, cut off from the rest of life.”

John Holt 1923 – 1985 CE
from Teach Your Own

Themes: Education

“We destroy the love of learning… by encouraging and compelling them to work for petty and contemptible rewards… A's on report cards, or honor rolls, or dean's lists, or Phi Beta Kappa keys, in short, for the ignoble satisfaction of feeling that they are better than someone else.”

John Holt 1923 – 1985 CE

66. Go Low

“Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.”

Malcolm X الحاجّ مالك الشباز‎‎ 1925 – 1965 CE

Themes: Education

“Society highly values its normal man. It educates children to lose themselves and to become absurd, and thus to be normal.”

R. D. Laing 1927 – 1989 CE
from Politics of Experience

Themes: Education

“Education is a system of imposed ignorance.”

Noam Chomsky 1928 CE –
from Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media

67. Three Treasures

“The whole educational and professional training system is a very elaborate filter, which just weeds out people who are too independent, and who think for themselves… because they're dysfunctional to the institutions.”

Noam Chomsky 1928 CE –

41. Distilled Life

“People have become educated, but have yet to become human.”

Abdul Sattar Edhi عبدالستار ایدھی 1928 – 2016 CE
Pakistan's "Father Teresa"

Themes: Education

“When you learn, teach; when you get, give.”

Maya Angelou 1928 – 2014 CE

“Imitation is a real evil that has to be broken before real teaching can begin… Schools teach you to imitate. If you don’t imitate what the teacher wants you get a bad grade… in college, you are supposed to imitate the teacher in such a way as to convince the teacher you were not imitating”

Robert M. Pirsig 1928 – 2017 CE
from Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

“A slave mentality which had been built into him by years of carrot-and-whip grading, a mule mentality which said, ‘If you don’t whip me, I won’t work.’ He didn’t get whipped. He didn’t work.”

Robert M. Pirsig 1928 – 2017 CE
from Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

Themes: Education Slavery

“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education.”

Martin Luther King Jr. 1929 – 1968 CE
Leading world influence for equality, peace, non-violence, and poverty alleviation

Themes: Education

“Giving kids clothes and food is one thing, but it's much more important to teach them that other people besides themselves are important and that the best thing they can do with their lives is to use them in the service of other people.”

Dolores Huerta 1930 CE –

Themes: Education
“When I go to give a talk somewhere, I never know what I am going to say…. The purpose is not to teach them anything. It is to awaken them to their own inner reality.”

Gesshin Myoko Roshi 1931 – 1999 CE
Moon heart miraculous light

Themes: Education

“I don’t consider myself a teacher… I only try to show people how to turn on their light”

Gesshin Myoko Roshi 1931 – 1999 CE
Moon heart miraculous light

“We are in a race between education and disaster.”

Neil Postman 1931 – 2003 CE
from Amusing Ourselves to Death

Themes: Education

“In the West these days, though they have good intentions, parents’ main advice to children is 'You must be strong. You must have self-esteem. You must not lose your hold on yourself. You must stand on your own feet. Don’t depend on others.' —but what is self? Modern people are afraid of losing their own ordinary egos. What else do they have to lose but that?”

Thinley Norbu གདུང་སྲས་ཕྲིན་ལས་ནོར་བུ 1931 – 2011 CE
(Kyabjé Dungse)

“If we think of ‘teaching’ as imparting knowledge, knowledge and skill-sets are necessary but teaching stays on the level of only understanding the words. If by ‘teaching’ we mean, transmitting the true sense of the words, words aren’t even necessary. Realized wisdom communicates with every gesture and expression.”

Shan Dao 山道 1933 CE –

“Worlds can be found by a child and an adult bending down and looking together under the grass stems or at the skittering crabs in a tidal pool.”

Mary Catherine Bateson 1939 CE –

Themes: Education

“apparent phenomena are all the books one needs.”

Chögyam Trungpa 1939 – 1987 CE via Nalanda Translation Committee
from Sadhana of Mahamudra

Themes: Education Books

“these twelve experiences that Naropa went through were a continuous unlearning process. To begin with, he had to unlearn, to undo the cultural façade. Then he had to undo the philosophical and emotional façade. Then he had to step out and become free altogether.”

Chögyam Trungpa 1939 – 1987 CE
from Illusion's Game

Themes: Education Freedom

48. Unlearning

“And all of the colors are black... It's just imagination they lack. Everything's the same back in my little town.

Paul Simon 1941 CE –

“Out of college, money spent, see no future, pay no rent...”

Paul McCartney 1942 CE –
(Sir James Paul McCartney)
from You Never Give Me Your Money

Themes: Education Money

“I no have education. I have inspiration. If I was educated, I would be a damn fool.”

Bob Marley 1945 – 1981 CE

Themes: Education

“To learn how to learn, you have to love learning—or you have to at least enjoy it—because so much learning is about being motivated to teach yourself.”

Thomas L. Friedman 1953 CE –

Themes: Education

“Two centuries ago, 12% of the world could read and write; today 85% can. Literacy and education will soon be universal, for girls as well as for boys.”

Steven Pinker 1954 CE –
Humanistic scientist, insightful cultural commentaror
from Enlightenment Now

Themes: Education

“There is no boy, at this age, cute enough or interesting enough to stop you from getting an education. If I had worried about who liked me and who thought I was cute when I was your age, I wouldn’t be married to the President of the United States.”

Michelle Obama 1964 CE –

“We don't really learn anything properly until there is a problem, until we are in pain, until something fails to go as we had hoped.”

Alain de Botton 1969 CE –
Philosophic link between ancient wisdom and modern challenge
from How Proust Can Change Your Life

Themes: Education

“With guns you can kill terrorists, with education you can kill terrorism.”

Malala Yousafzai ملالہ یوسفزئی 1997 CE –
from I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban

Themes: Education

“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.”

Malala Yousafzai ملالہ یوسفزئی 1997 CE –
from I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban

“We should learn everything and then choose which path to follow. Education is neither Eastern nor Western, it is human.”

Malala Yousafzai ملالہ یوسفزئی 1997 CE –
from I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban

Sources

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