Beautiful Ideas - I

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All we need are ideas, beautiful ideas. Ideas have this transformational quality. Some people are so full of such ideas. Some ideas are revolutionary while some are radical and destructive. History witnessed both. Do we need such a balance of good and bad, may be so. I really don’t know.

The idea that I am going to write about has come about over a dinner pep talk. Both of us had a conforming discussion. Since we came from similar educational backgrounds and similar moral principles, we had a common thinking that quality of education is deteriorating at the colleges in the country.

My friend Tshewang had one such idea, quality education for Bhutan. Quality education is desirable for all humans everywhere but bit self-conscious being a hard-to-the-core Bhutanese. It is more relevant for us, since Bhutan is precariously sandwiched between two superpowers of the world. Economically, militarily and politically we are belittled. Our Demographics are hilariously at our odds. Our only strength is soft power, quality of people. Quality of people is determined not just by their physical health but more of mental hygiene, of which education is the most critical element.

Education is the numinous solution to all worlds problem. Not only does a man see the world in a broader sense but also can he put things into perspective. Basically world is just same to any man but for a man with right education, he can see it with better precision. To any problem, half the solution lies in correct understanding of the situation. Efficiency of solution depends on his creativity. Creativity is yet another indispensable trait in this age, where resources have become scarce from limited.

I quote K5 “we cannot think of living up to humongous numbers of the world but we should make that up by sheer quality”. Some nations have shown that. Fishing villages transformed into tiger economies. Human thinking seems to be the only limit. We should dare to dream and dare to live by it.

Our previous generation had people educated from renowned institutions of the world. These leaders tactfully maneuvered the tricky political arena and came out winners. Now, the onus is on us and we need at the least to peep into the minds of finest brains to strategize our next phase of the journey. The seas would be unthinkably rough and we must be braced-up for the worst storm.

We need to cultivate a value around education not necessarily around money. Money is one commodity that can answer half our prayers leaving the other half at large. Not everything can be priced, some things are beyond money. They are sacrosanct.  Whole world will conspire against you, if you think it is not.

Bhutan just needs 100 sane thinking commonsensical individuals at a time to lead the way supported by averagely educated men. Now the number is no more a problem, thanks to the growth in the economy and the education policies. It is time we rethink our education policies. 

Build one institution each for each discipline; take 100 best at a time (per year). Recruit 10 finest trainers available in the region. Make them take the toughest test, not just the conventional memory test but rather more of strategic, creative and commonsensical ones. But they should also be sensitized on the value of life and sanctity of humanity. 

Sometimes education in linear and structural thinking educates people out of creativity. We also need to develop non-linear and unstructured thinking, such as art. World so far is transformed by creative people and run by structured thinkers. We need both. 

I wish our political masters of the day and age to think beyond the confines of domestic party lines. I also wish they stretch their vision beyond five years and think of Bhutan as one boat full of likeminded people whose common aspiration at the end of the day is “happyness”. The current state of affairs is like clustering at one side of the boat to imbalance the other side, with a distorted view that saving your side will save the boat. But the fact is saving one side doesn’t save the boat; it rather will sink both the sides and the whole boat. The boat needs expert sailors; sailors who have the ability to think that the boat is one whole and not just two sides. The sea is getting rougher by the minute. Sailors are made not born, so let us make them.

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