So as a former educator I am very familiar with the slogan “knowledge is power.”
It’s certainly a popular notion. If you’re going to vote and be part of a democratic society then you should be informed and educated. However, there is less consensus recently on what people should be informed and educated about. But to me knowledge is a tricky thing. Important? Certainly. But I have met many knowledgeable people in my day, and a great many of them still lack wisdom. And without wisdom what is the point of knowledge? You just know a lot of isolated facts that have no larger meaning, that reveal nothing to you about the mystery of life.
Because to me there are two ways to walk the path of understanding. The first is with humility, where you start seeking knowledge and discover things that result in you gaining wisdom. The second is with pride, where you start seeking knowledge that results in you gaining a superiority complex from what you discovered.
I like to write because it helps me walk the path to understanding, and I hope you know which way I’m striving after, because if you don’t then not only have I failed you, I’ve failed myself.
So today I realized a detail about myself that is quite revealing about my personality at large. The only time I ever really wish I had money (or a large gift card equivalent to a substantial sum of money) is when I see advertised a book I really want to read/add to my library for a later date.
I admit to you all I have a Disney’s Princess Belle fantasy where a man gives me a dream library complete with a ladder that moves across bookcases (I always thought that was the coolest thing- although it would probably prevent me from reading as much as I would without the temptation there). Nonetheless, I feel it would be completely amazing to live in a place that had an actual library. My parents are both solid readers and the many homes I grew up in always had oodles of books lying around for the taking, and take them I did. But it would be nice to have a designated library within the home. If my mom has her way in the new house, I think it might finally be our time.
All we have to do is find the boxes with the rest of our books in them…
There really isn’t one.
But blogs who claim to have it get hundreds of thousands of views and shares. (which is just a touch more than I get, lol)
But fear not, I have a very different definition of success than most people and I’m very content with this blog and very flattered that even one person takes the time to read it, much less a few thousand- so thank you!
Because I think in our globally connected society we think just a little too big. You’re not a success unless you influence millions. You’re not wealthy unless you live like a Kardashian. Your political movement didn’t work unless it abolished everything you disagreed with by the next day and ended poverty to boot.
You may think I’m exaggerating, and maybe I was a little, but it was done to make a point. The point that this train of thought breeds apathy and ingratitude. It hardens the heart to the world around us and the plight of others. It makes us think that unless we can do everything we shouldn’t do anything. And that’s just foolish because I can’t think of a better way to suck the joy out of living.
Instead, I would echo something closer to the theme of Schindler’s list, that “he who saves one man saves the world.” Because while we’re so busy being big we forget to enjoy being small, and full of wonder like a child. We forget to smile at the stranger sitting next to us or be happy at the smallest act of kindness that someone does for us or that we do for someone else. We forget that sometimes life has a little bit of magic in it, and it sits in plain sight if we would only just remember to look for it.
And that’s why I really don’t care whether this blog gets a hundred views or a hundred thousand views in a day, because when I was little if the person next to me agreed to read one of my stories I would sit breathless with anticipation, not because I was looking to change the world, but because I was simply hoping that when they read it they would see the magic too.