Wed, Jul 6, 2016
Laws, rules, orders, education curricula are definitely an insurance against disaster, except that they do so at the expense of retarding our creativity since they create & encourage a script-based livelihood. Should we abolish laws & curricula?
How our elites create solutions that in turn create problems.
The complex web of interdependence in any society is not only woven but also mainly held by the presence of virtues, beliefs, morals and to a significant extent, ideas. We, the human beings, have an intrinsic yearning for what to hold onto in terms of ideologies. It literally feels scary not to believe in anything! So, our readily available mind-hospitality for what to believe in, and the fact that notions make up the fabric of societal dynamics imply that anyone who can coin up satisfactory notions and phenomena, will not only control the society but also create one if the notions are imbued with novelty.
It is basing on this philosophy that African, and ultimately Global institutions of Law, Education, Security, Technology among others, have been structured. Scripts have been synthesized by the elites in those respective institutions who often overlook both intra-dependence and inter-dependence of ideas. They use their expanded awareness in a constricted way to formulate localized and boxed solutions which not only yield a cascade of problems but also ironically reveal the fact that elitism is not the key to righteousness.
Simply put, the elites create solutions to create problems, and paradoxically the elites fail us! Whether it is intentional or not is another deliberation, for another day! [pretty outlandish, ha!]
For example, a judge’s intuition-based or innate judgement capabilities, are subdued when they have to follow a script to render justice. This brings me to a quintessential case in Detroit- USA where a judge ruled that a minor be put in a child detention home for 3 days, because the kid was seen, unknowingly taking a mildly alcoholic drink bought by the also naive dad, in that regard, at a baseball game. More so, the kid was to return home only if the dad was away for 3 weeks, so as to prevent interaction. Another anecdotal representation of this scripted livelihood we live is seen in our schools where the teachers carefully follow a predetermined array of ideas to pass on to children.
I can immediately hear the rumbling in your mind that,” shouldn’t we have laws? Shouldn’t we have curricula? Shouldn’t we have rules?” It is important to note that, I’m not against these scripts of ideologies! They definitely prevent disaster except that they do so at the gruesome expense of retarding our creativity and breeding mediocrity in our thinking patterns. A judge won’t utilize their innate ingenuity to creatively and rightly solve a problem, simply because they are counting on the tranquilizing effect of the scripted law. A teacher won’t create for the students simply because they are enjoying the comfort of the availability of a predetermined ideology to pass on.
This blinding effect of scripts is what has slowly fed on our intrinsic practical wisdom, which brings me to what we ought to do to reverse this paradigm
Aristotle’s equation of wisdom: Moral will + Moral skill = Practical wisdom
It is largely endemic to human nature to believe that justice is equity. However, when we explode this notion of equity into whether it means people getting what they deserve or people deserving what they get, justice vanishes! Or at least, it is an illusion.
So, the way out is in restoring the flexibility to engage our innate practical wisdom, whereby we ought to flow with the unpredictability and novelty of life situations, each time concocting respective novel solutions. Of course this suggestion sounds like it comes from the land of utopia and fantasy, but that is simply because of the enormous conditioning we have undergone through the scripts. So, it requires an equally enormous effort to apply Aristotle’s equation.
The wise people are the ones who know when and how to make the exception to every rule. This is the culture and attitude we should start cultivating, ironically using the very institution of education where the script pandemic is prevalent, among our children otherwise we are eternally damned to keep in the lockstep! The families are the best avenues to facilitate the reversal of this paradigm of justice since it is where livelihoods are primarily nurtured.
I look forward to not only creating but also participating in a life that is script free and allows me to reach beyond myself! Now that you are aware, you might want to join me on this journey. Start where you are. Ha!
Edrine Habasa is an autodidact bridge engineer, dialectician and knowledge enthusiast. He's also a debunker of falsehoods as he champions the truth.