Friday, December 19, 2008

Born To Learn

Hamlet: Prince of Denmark
Act IV, Scene IV
A plain in Denmark

What is a man
If his chief good and market of his time
Be but to sleep and feed? a beast, no more.

Sure, he that made us with large discourse,

Looking before and after, gave us not

That capacity and god-like reason
To fust in us unused.

Humans are designed to learn.

We are born to learn. Babies learn vast amounts of skills and behaviors, without the aid of school or direct instruction. They learn through their senses, through observation, and largely through practice, trial and error. I know way too many adults, fully capable, that have stopped learning. They are too busy, too tired, not interested, too afraid, too lazy. This is sad and I think creates great sadness as these individuals find themselves more and more out of sync with the realities and demands of our world.

We need to learn and learn and learn. Being a lifelong learner has never been so necessary, so exciting, and so easy. Every day one can travel to the great museums of the world, into concert halls or rock stadiums, to classes at great institutions of higher learning, into the minds and lives of teenagers posting to blogs, Twitter, or You Tube. I just don't understand the adult who has decided they are as good as they get or as necessary right now.

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