[June 21, 2022] Educating ourselves is no easy task but necessary. It’s difficult because you have to find people who can tell you what to read and how to write to formulate your thoughts more precisely. The world is full of ideologues and puppet masters (pulling the strings of many), and they are happy to misdirect and obscure what you need to know.
Universities are full of those who would send you off course; redirect you to a place that portends good but is not. Today’s abdication of advanced education to simplistic ideologies is a reason to educate ourselves. My warning is to be very careful when walking the grounds of formal education; you could fall into the traps of those who hold dear to a secular religion that claims, wrongly, to be the model of moral virtue.
Learn how to write. If you can write, then you can think. If you can think, write, and communicate, you are unbelievably powerful because your arguments can move the world forward. If you can tighten and construct your arguments well and carefully think through them, you’re a serious force to contend with. You will be powerful.
This is what we are not educated about in schools, from grade 1 to the graduate schools of great universities. They have done us a disservice. Yet, if your education is proper and balanced, it organizes your mind, grounds you, and puts you on a solid foundation. But, to do so, you must study the right people, the great people of the past.
I have put together a reading list that can create a basis for authentic learning and includes writers such as Orwell, Huxley, Nietzsche, Dostoevsky, Solzhenitsyn, Frankl, and the Bible. Many of these writers are covered in articles under my blog; go there a read them. The men who wrote these texts help us follow the logical pathways that the greatest minds have chosen. You must read these books because they address our culture’s central issues TODAY.
If you fail to read these great men, you cannot participate in the current debates over the great ideas except as a puppet (and you don’t know who is pulling your strings or why). If you read these men, you can figure out what else to read. But if you chose the difficult path, read them. You will find it very hard, and you will come out on the other end a different person.
You can decide to either be an intellectual infant, which is not something I recommend or choose the proper path. And when you do that, you will have to face what we all fear, a path few have chosen, but you will be truly free.
Please read my new book, “Our Longest Year in Iraq,” on Amazon (link here).