Intellectual Lethargy

Yes it is a problem.

The Caribbean Examination Council does not encourage learning: it simply demands preparation for exams. As a result, our students forget everything once they’ve handed in their last exam paper. The skills they’d learnt are easily forgotten because they were cheaply reinforced to support overly demanding syllabi. The education system fails because it is perpetuating, through rewarding, thoughtless creatures who are solely driven by gratification by grade and not the desire for knowledge.

The school system makes students feel like their thoughts and ideas are not substantial enough and must be supported by someone more academically accredited. The truth is that their thoughts would have merit once they use reason but they don’t know how to…

I’m only a few years older than my teenage students, but I feel the gap. They’re losing their ability to reason because the faculty is not being exercised. Is no one noticing this?

reason

I encourage my students to reason for themselves. I don’t, however, tell them what way they should change their (too impressionable) minds to because that would be hypocritical. Instead, I ask them to ask themselves why they think the way they do.

More easily than before, I believe that because of the constant impressive influences my generation is exposed to, it discourages mental activity. Because why think when someone else had already done it for you and their opinions have been accredited by the incredible internet?

I asked my students to write a critical essay on Bob Marley’s Redemption Song because being from the Caribbean, I believed that they could benefit from Marley’s views, once they sat down and reasoned with him and themselves. They all wrote the same thing from the same internet site.

Our generation regurgitates rather than reasons. They do not question the values they have been socialized to hold. In fact, they don’t question anything, so anything the incredible internet says is chiseled into their mind as irrefutable fact.

Me My Self and Meditation

I feel few things are important in this world; one of the more significant ones being finding one’s self. Our self, according to my meditation instructor, has been lost to us ages ago because our connection with our true self has been overridden by the lusts of the flesh. Her belief is that the self is naturally peaceful, loving, gracious, synonym, synonym. I’m still not sure how much I buy into her ideas of spirituality but I’m inclined to keep an open mind.

Either way, now that I’ve started meditation classes, I’ve found myself becoming more peaceful in general by paying attention to what affects my mood. When feeling my humor ebb, I take a conscious deep breath and try to focus on peaceful things… it usually works.

Our generation is very obviously becoming more and more unaware of their mood triggers and, as such, are dissociating themselves from their selves. As an old soul, (see: granny) I blame technology. It is a constant distraction and we neglect ourselves to facilitate addictions to our devices. Our reflexive disregard leads to a suspension in our character development because it is easier to be cheaply entertained than to be.

Of course, I’m as guilty as the next guy since university has taught me that cheap entertainment is the way to go. Still, self exploration is important to me, so I’m willing to sacrifice the cheap thrills for something more valuable.

desaise

I think the stars they watch me sleep

Each night, through parted curtains;

They watch me dream, I’m certain

I feel their gaze, their constant peep.

 

They twinkle twinkle, stars are eyes

Are daring, bold, at me they stare

At night amongst themselves they share

The stories of my lows and highs.

 

A vi’lent swoosh, I draw the drapes

I use to plaster o’er my scars

I wait for dawn, my sweet escape

And then! my door is blown ajar

At silent majesty I gape.

I now know stars may stare at stars.