Education – Are You Investing in Yours?

“The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows.” – Sydney J. Harris

“Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” – William Butler Yeats

“Education’s purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one.” Malcolm Forbes

I have always loved taking classes, attending lectures and seminars, reading and, lately, attending a plethora of teleseminars. Have you noticed that there are more right now than ever?

Yes, I would agree that I am a strong proponent of lifetime learning and education.

My family has even expressed concern that I spend too much time and money on books, teleseminars and information products. Therefore, I was delighted to hear John Childers, while being interviewed by Armand Morin the other night, tell about one of the most useful tips an early mentor of his had shared with him.

Childers said that this man had told him that one of the reasons starting businesses fail is that rather than spending money on advertising, they wait until they have made some money (which they don’t without getting the word out). He said that it is the same with education and learning. Many people plan to wait until they have money before investing in their continuing, lifetime learning and education.

He and Armand both stressed that those who succeed have invested time, money and effort in educating themselves. Now, I am not suggesting that you spend thousands of dollars in furthering your education. But I am proposing that you find ways to learn, learn and learn more from the experts.

The great news is that with the information – almost overload – available today, we have no excuse for not learning. Not only is the Internet loaded with great articles, well-researched and written e-newsletters and reports, the teleseminars are terrific ways to attend a seminar without paying for travel and overnight expenses. And, most of these are now recorded as MP3s which can be downloaded and listened to, time and time again – no long distance phone charges.

And, don’t forget our public libraries. The books, tapes, CDs and use of computers are there for us to learn from. It is almost too easy! I wonder if that is why more people don’t make use of these incredible opportunities that available to all of us – whether we have extra funds, or not.

I know that you are looking for some new quotations about education, and I found some great ones:

  • “Education is learning what you didn’t even know you didn’t know.” – Daniel J. Boorstin
  • “The most important function of education at any level is to develop the personality of the individual and the significance of his life to himself and to others. This is the basic architecture of a life; the rest is ornamentation and decoration of the structure.” – Grayson Kirk
  • “Education is what survives when what has been learned has been forgotten.” – B. F. Skinner
  • “An education isn’t how much you have committed to memory, or even how much you know. It’s being able to differentiate between what you know and what you don’t.” Anatole France

So, my question for you is, “What have you learned lately?” I remember the late Leo Buscaglia sharing that every night at dinner his father would have each of them answer the question, “And, what did you learn today?”

Let me leave you with one more quotation to think about. Erich Fromm wrote, “Why should society feel responsible only for the education of children, and not for the education of all adults of every age?”