“There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance” – Socrates
As we’ve discussed before, knowledge is power. That’s something we’ve known for as long as we can remember and something we’ve been told since even before then. Knowledge is power because other people can’t take it from us.
So if knowledge is power, why then is ignorance such a rival for it? If ignorance is the opposite of knowledge, then shouldn’t it be weak? Logically, yes. And as we know logic is often correct. Ignorance is nothing but weakness… but it’s weakness that spreads.
Ignorance is the sole problem of… well, everything. Wars break out because people are ignorant of others’ needs. People are killed because others are ignorant to their needs. Ignorance is weakness.
So, as always, we have to ask ourselves how this applies to our own mind. Why is knowledge power? How does ignorance defeat us?
Well, knowledge is power because it tells us what moves to make and when. With knowledge we’re able to predict our enemy’s moves and stop them in their tracks. By enemy, I mean anything that stands in the way of completing a goal we set for ourselves. Laziness is your enemy. Anger is your enemy. And of course, ignorance is your enemy.
Ignorance is our enemy because it keeps us completely in the dark. We lose track of what we’re supposed to be doing and how. We forget why things are important and we lose focus. In extreme situations, ignorance to us is like rust to iron — it eats away at us.
So then the clear solution is to become more knowledgeable. This of course applies to academic knowledge; you should always be trying to learn something new. But what many fail to remember is that some knowledge can only be gained from experience. So… learn. Be ready to fail. Prepare yourself so that you get up and try again over and over until you learn something. Then you acquire the skill and the discipline. Discipline is knowledge too, and it can only be gained through experience.
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One thought on “Ignorance Might Not Be So Blissful After All…”
Thanks, Chris. I do believe that knowledge is power. It was part of my philosophy of education when I was a teacher. You never know when you will need individual pieces of knowledge, but experiencing the process of learning is also crucial. A closed mind approaching a problem may never see the answer sitting off in the corner of their minds.
My fear is trusting the knowledge and filtering out the pieces or the people who may be snake oil or its salesmen. I do not want to be led in one direction, away from the true answer.