Even an Old Dog Can Figure It Out

Ink on Grey Toned Watercolor Paper- Words: Plutarch

For years as children we were taught to learn, retain and absorb everything we could in order to be smart and successful. Let me explain further. I played a game with one of my nephews and the question was “In what state is the city of St. Louis?” He looked at me like I had three heads. His brow furrowed and he sighed very deeply. He then asked me a shocking question, “Is there a city in the U.S. called St. Louis?” I couldn’t believe it. That is when my sister-in-law explained that they no longer learn the fifty states nor the capitals of the states. “They can look it up so why do they need to learn it?”

WOW! My mind was blown!!! School is no longer about memorization and knowledge, it is about problem solving and looking things up. Which means the brain is not a repository it is a tool to be engaged and broadened beyond it’s current thinking process. THAT is exactly what this quote is all about. We read these words and see the inspiration and radical thought processes that need to change, and I now realize it has happened without me even knowing it. I’m not sure I agree that children of our nation do not need to know about the geography of the place in which they live (just saying)…yet I get the point.

To reach our goals, to engage our minds and soul towards doing things that ignite and empower us to think bigger, deeper, broader and outside of the lines, we need to be willing to change how we do things. We need to train our brains and ourselves to act and think from a different perspective. We retain and focus on the values, principles and ‘things’ that matter to our current world, which means we have to spend time thinking about what is important to us.

What is important to us? What matters enough to our world – and to those in our lives – that we are willing to change to make it happen? Are we REALLY willing to get off the merry-go-round that can be life and live instead by our own compass and trajectory? What sets our soul on fire? What are we passionate about? And how do we know? THAT is what real education is all about. Engage the mind and the rest will follow.

Giving people the opportunity to learn and grow within themselves to the point that they understand their gifts, their passions, their dreams enough to act on them every day of their life. That is what will ignite the mind and soul and change this world for the better. I have lived long enough to understand and agree with today’s quote. This old dog figured that one out. And, I must admit, I knew that Missouri is the state in which St. Louis resides! Mrs. Lang made me learn that in third grade…thank you Mrs. Lang!

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