The Mark of the Educated Man
If you read nothing else today, read this! One of the most powerful, hard hitting essays on education I have ever read!

Quote:To educate comes from the Latin educere, meaning to “lead out.” Wise education may lead us, as both Plato and Cardinal Newman knew so well, out of the shadows and into the sun. I write “may lead us” because one cannot be educated against his will. Arrogance or indolence, corruption or conceit—any of these, or all of these, may frustrate learning (see CCC #2038, #2526), leaving one in a mental or moral stupor, or in a kind of academic autism, prized by some because it neither issues mental challenges nor makes moral demands.

Genuine education is rooted in the kind of timeless perspective which modern society arrogantly abjures. Such education provides depth and breadth. Alexander Pope’s idea that we ought to “drink deep or taste not the Pierian spring” has much to commend it, for a little learning is, in fact, a dangerous thing: It distorts reality, and it misinforms by providing only a small sample of fact. To say, “Professor Smith came to class sober today,” while true, leads to distortion—and to defamation (because Professor Smith never comes to class inebriated). Learning by sound bite is like reading only by skimming or eating only on Thursdays.
The ideologization (forgive that noun) of education; grade inflation; the inanity of “safe spaces,” free from reasoned, if politically unpopular, moral discourse; the rather common notion that sustained lucubration—hard work!—is no longer necessary in secondary or college work, abetted by frequent lack of academic rigor; the increasingly ubiquitous belief that college is about fun and success in social life, sporting events, or spousal pursuit; and the rampant moral chaos and confusion that mark so much of contemporary “higher learning”—all lead one to fear for the Republic and, much more critically, for the salvation of souls. “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge,” prophesied Hosea (4:6).

The mark of the educated, we used to hear, is the willing acknowledgment that one knows he does not know, or, at least, knows that he does not know enough. The madding crowd, however, will read, or hear, or watch nothing that confronts the prejudice of the day. As Fr. James Schall teaches in A Line Through the Human Heart (of course, decrying these opinions): Abortion, same-sex “marriage,” and euthanasia are our social rights. The poor are poor because the rich are rich. The earth is overpopulated, and man himself is the chief threat to the well-being of our planet. Islam is a religion of peace. War is always immoral. Democracy is always the best form of government, and governments exist to protect the rights they munificently give us. There is no truth; sin does not exist; and there is no final divine judgment. That these chichi views may be the stuff of rank prejudice seems utterly to escape the glitterati.

We are told, moreover, that we must learn and appreciate the words of our day, which define reality for us and point to the challenges we face: democracy, diversity, equality, inclusivity, marginalization, misogyny, racism, sexism, homophobia, imperialism, colonialism, progressivism, autonomy (among others). These thirteen words are sheer cant (meaning hypocritical and sanctimonious talk); they are suggested by Anthony Esolen, who, in Out of the Ashessays that they “are simply terms of political force and have no real meaning anymore.”
Read the entire article on The Imaginative Conservative.
Jovan-Marya of the Immaculate Conception Weismiller, T.O.Carm.

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I really enjoyed reading this. Thank you.
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