When the ‘Tao’ becomes a product of the educational system, it no longer has the power to keep mankind from destroying himself through utter submission to natural and irrational impulses. These will be exercised by a few over all the rest in a haphazard manner that invites no judgement of good or evil because these concepts in themselves are open to being shaped by those who happen to be in power at the moment.
We must see through some things, but Lewis suggests that humanity itself should not be on the agenda for a reduction to some element of nature that can be manipulated and changed.
It has already taken several readings to grasp a basic understanding of the brilliance contained within this little book (it is less than 100 pages). However, I think it well worth the time spent to understand the ideas it proposes and will probably continue to dig for what I think is the hidden solution to a balanced educational approach that can develop the individuals sense of morality without forcing them to embrace the academic anorexia that plagues the contemporary college and high school campus experience.
“For the wise men of old the cardinal problem had been how to conform the soul to reality, and the solution had been knowledge, self-discipline, and virtue. For magic and applied science alike the problem is how to subdue reality to the wishes of men: the solution is a technique; and both, in the practice of this technique, are ready to do things hitherto regarded as disgusting and impious
Popular calls for education reform to produce 'functions' of creativity only provide an ironic outline of what is missing from this functional education system: the human element. Education must produce humans. Creativity is a natural expression of humanity. In order to teach someone what it means to be human, there must be some understanding of what this is or how it might look.
The appeal by Lewis to a transcendent universal standard creates the space required for a democratic approach to education reform. If the standard is universal, every person has some idea of what it might look like and can participate in the process of building a new system. On the other hand, if the standard is arbitrary, then only those with power, authority, and credentials have the ability to propose changes for reasons only they can understand.
It’s easy to be dazzled by new technology, but it’s important not to let it overshadow the human element of education. Source: An iPad Can't Be a Mentor - Education and Career News
In an attempt not to teach any values, the value of facts also disappears leaving students with no incentive to learn - except perhaps the fear of bad grades. It seems like we must either embrace some standard of value (or angle of truth) in order to make the learning experience have any significance for the student.
incentives like autonomy, mastery, and purpose outweigh the potential of grades as incentives for student motivation
Changing the world is more accessible to all of us today than ever before, but this does not mean the challenge is any easier than it was a thousand years ago. The most difficult person to change is often the one who is closest to us. In fact, changing our own minds can sometimes seem like an impossible feat.