Growing up in North America and in most westernized cultures, a course in miracles we have been indoctrinated with the concept, “In order to get a good job, you need a good education.” Indeed with the world shrinking, the global community is now latching on to this principle. Today we’re going to talk about the real purpose of education – YOUR purpose of education… is it to merely to survive or do you want to thrive?
There’s no question that in this age of information and communication, a minimum standard of education is an absolute requisite just to exist. Those of us who are able to read these words simply cannot imagine what it must be like to be illiterate and try to function in this world. Yet for many reasons, an unsettlingly large part of the world’s population remains uneducated. The primary purpose of education then would seem to help us get by.
Thankfully, many – if not most – nations around the world have laws that make education freely available to everyone. With three basic styles readily accessible – formal, non-formal and informal learning – there is a method of education to suit just about anyone.
All that’s left to do is for an individual to decide his or her own purpose of education and what amount is necessary to survive and/or thrive. Let’s take a brief look at the three systems of schooling and see how they are currently serving an individual’s purpose of education.
The formal system is perhaps the most familiar, not to mention the most accepted form of education among the industrialized nations. It’s the system responsible for ‘getting a good education in order to get a good job’ rationale. While there are no guarantees for anyone to live ‘happily ever after’, there’s no question that those who successfully survive formal education have a definite advantage in today’s world.
Survive is the key word here. For those with a purpose of education of getting a piece of paper, formal education can be a very long process… impossibly long! In my own experience, approximately 2,000 students enrolled at my college back in 1971. Four years later, only 40 of us graduated with a Bachelor Degree.
Today, I am moving away from the main discipline that decorates my diploma. At least I had 30+ years to apply and earn a living from what I learned. Not everyone is so lucky. Stories abound of over-qualified degree holders, flipping hamburgers and parking cars because there is no work for them in their field.