Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The struggle between knowledge and ignorance

Knowing ignorance is strength; ignoring knowledge is sickness.
- Lao-Tzu, philosopher (6th century BCE)

Lao-Tzu (who wrote extensively about contemporary conditions in the Middle Kingdom--China--but is little known in the West) made these pronouncements 26 centuries ago, yet we ignore them even today.

They explain what is at the heart of Turning It Around and the TIA movement.

In the 21st century, we have too many people who ignore knowledge (simply turn away from opportunities to learn), but they complain bitterly about the conditions of their lives. Conditions that result from their own ignorance and the power over their own destinies that they give away as a consequence.

We don't have to be experts at a lot of things. We need to know just enough about a lot of subjects, at least enough to know where to learn more when we need it.

We need, for our own benefits, to be experts on one or two subjects so that others will be prepared to ask us in return for the information they share with us.

They will be less likely to give knowledge to us if we don't have something to share with them.

A subject about which we should have expertise is not "How much money can I accumulate over my working life?" We need to survive, but accumulating huge amounts of wealth requires sacrifices that make lives poor in many other ways.

Knowledge is a form of wealth that grows when it is shared.

Ignorance is a form of poverty that makes a life smaller unless it is overcome.

Bill Allin
'Turning It Around: Causes and Cures for Today's Epidemic Social Problems,' striving to demonstrate the benefits of knowledge and the harm of ignorance.
Learn more at http://billallin.com/cgi/index.pl

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