Council On Ideas
1996 Council on Ideas Members:
Mary Catherine Bateson
is still in grade school. We don't yet know all that we need to know
to flourish. But we already know enough to destroy ourselves. Every
major threat we are now facing...from world population explosion to
environmental pollution to violence...is linked to the problems of learning.
The 1996 Council on Ideas believes that the solutions begin with the
lifelong human capacity to enjoy and share the process of learning.
Learning must become a means to bridge social fragmentation. Finally
we need to take responsibility for the way we act on our learning.
and education are not the same. All too often educational institutions,
while trying to transmit information and skills, extinguish curiosity
and the delight in learning.
facilitate learning we must break down barriers of compartmentalization
requires much more than incorporating information. It involves a continuing
process of connecting information and applying it in new contexts.
This includes a search for meaning and coherence.
unequal distribution of learning reinforces social fragmentation and
violence. Shared learning is one basic element of community.
to learning does not entail the abandonment of traditional teachings,
but the ability to add, expand, compare and integrate knowledge. It
does entail the willingness to set aside prejudice and to think crtically.
We are not what we know, but what we are willing to learn. We respect
others not for what they know, but for what they are willing to learn.