We are all involved in the process of education from the beginning of our lives. Mr. Thoreau is comparing education to the simple life experience as a straight-cut ditch to mentoring brook. The straight-cut ditch is man-made trash, and the brook is a natural crick. But they both have similarities as they help water to reach a bigger reservoir. We all have desires to succeed in that world. And we perceive education as a straight-cut to the knowledge which will give us power. Education is incorporated in every child’s life and perceived as something mandatory. Most of us have a negative attitude toward kids who skip school and who do not maintain good grades. But it well-known fact that not always the people who were good students in school become successful in their lives.
Most people will agree, that much more pleasurable to have a deal with educated and intelligent people than with ignorant and uneducated. But not all educated people can reach the goal in their life. Without other important features, as dedication and hard-working, it is not possible to make the dream come true. I started to think about continued education when it was time to pick a profession in my life. Education serves as an elevator to reach a goal to become either a teacher, engineer, or accountant. To continue my education beyond school wasn’t even a question, because both of my parents went through this process, and they were working as an engineer. They wanted me to be not only a healthy, but independent, and intelligent person. I perceived an education mostly as a pleasant and useful experience that gives us a tool for long-life learning.
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It teaches us not only particular things but also how to think. While some of the facts and figures we learn today may not apply to the world of tomorrow, our ability to think will be useful always, in everything we do. It widens our understanding of what is possible in the world. Education increases our awareness and appreciation of areas that affect and enrich human lives, such as music, art, literature, science, politics, and economics. Education teaches us to make things more efficient in human beings’ understanding. But in some cases, it doesn’t take into account that the world and nature live in harmony and intrusion could lead to catastrophe. I speak in Mr. Thorow’s terms of ditch and brook, the brook is the thing which incorporated in the surrounded environment. When we make water go another way, even it would be faster and straight, it will cause a lot of damages to nature. Along brook’s way, there are trees, plants, and animals along the brook way, and they are dependent on water supply.
In case this water is not there anymore, animals have to leave for a new area with water around, and trees and plants will simply die. Today our planet in great danger. The danger of climate instability, the resilience and productivity of natural systems, the beauty of the natural world, and biological diversity. Was it done by just ignorant people? Unfortunately, most of that was done by people with BS, MS, PhDs. Germans were the most educated people in the world, but their education did not serve as an adequate barrier to barbarity. What was wrong with their education? In Wiesel’s words: “It emphasized theories instead of values, concepts rather than human beings, abstraction rather than consciousness, answers instead of questions, ideology, and efficiency rather than conscience.” I’m not agitated against education, but the worth of education must now be measured against the standards of decency and human survival. It is not education that will save us, but the education of a certain kind, which helps us to see the world as the whole, not as separated parts or subjects in the insolence of others.