Eduaction, Leadership, Motivation, Symbolism, Vision, Wisdom

The Spark


4With the changing times, the ways to teach and learn have changed drastically, thanks to the internet and ubiquitous sites offering free courses. Since anything available for free does not have an appeal to entice, so to inculcate among students, an urge to learn (since they are not paying for the course and also when it is available to them at fingertips, so they seldom care to get deep inside into understanding the concept, and they are more into playing with their high-tech gadgets, which are available to them easily due to low costs) is way too difficult for the teacher to teach and the student to learn and comprehend.

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In primitive times, we had candles to light in the dark. When someone wanted to light a candle, they had to bring that candle close to the one that was already lit. Teachers do the same thing, they burn themselves to light (literally) the ways for their students, trying to understand the concept as they have perceived it to be.

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But those were primitive times, bulbs have replaced candles now. Unfortunately, a lit bulb cannot light another bulb just by bringing the unlit bulb in close proximity to the lit one. It (the unlit bulb) needs to have the current passing through it to get light.

Being a teacher, I am from the past, my students are born after me, we are meeting together in the present, and I have to lead them into future, for which, I have two options, either to push them or pull them.

tunnel-visionPeople usually don’t like to be pushed, they like to be pulled. But how can I pull them into the future, which is physically not existing at the moment? So I need to develop my mental faculty to a level where I can pull (inspire) them to lead into the future.

This pulling is the inspiration for students to get ignited from within. To light the bulb within (the mind), they need current, which is flowing through them but it needs a spark which is very much ingrained in them (by nature) to ignite the bulb (mind) kept on top of the head.

In order for students to learn, the classroom strategies have to be changed drastically. The smart kids are now way ahead of their teachers (who have a primitive mindset) using high-tech gadgets and are way too smart to outwit their teachers. The teaching philosophy now should be to ignite the spark inside the kids and rote learning is sooner than later going to be obsolete.

Now if a student fails to get hold of the knowledge available to him at his finger tips, it is he, who is to be blamed for the failure and not the teacher. As he (the student) has failed to capitalize on the spark within.

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PS:
Look at the beauty of the concept, in order to light the room, the bulb is placed on the roof usually in the center. Similarly, the mind in our body is placed on top of our heads in the center.

Sajjad Hussain

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Eduaction, Philosophy, Self development, Symbolism, Vision, Wisdom

360 Degrees Plus


The credit of this blog goes to Mr. Hamza and Mr. Kamran, students of PAF KIET, who raised the question in my class and incited me for the idea to write this blog.

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This is an extension of my previous blog ‘360 Degrees’, wherein I have documented the answer to a question “what is the difference between ‘Vision and Imagination’?”, in the form a blog.

This time again I was asked a question by one of my students during a lecture, while I was explaining the concept through the diagram [similar to the one above, except the ‘observation part]. He came up with the question; where is ‘observation’ in the pic and I was kind of lost at that time and thought, how on earth, I didn’t think about it in the first place. I am now documenting my answer with more elaboration, explaining the significance of colors used for making this pic.

Again, I may be wrong, and would love to read your comments for clarifying my understanding.
[The picture above is my brain child, it clicked my mind when the question was raised].

Everything is data for a kid until the age of 5 or 6 years. The arc representing data has been colored red, as it reflects danger and the understanding of a kid about that data could not be taken as authentic, at this very tender age. The data is way too difficult for the kid to comprehend and the meaning s/he could get out of that data could be dangerous.

When s/he starts schooling s/he is disseminated with information [which is wrongly perceived as knowledge by most of the people, specially the parents] until 12th grade. The yellow color in the pic depicts that by now, s/he has developed in him/her self an understanding of the information s/he has acquired, and is now getting ready to converting it into knowledge, through practically experimenting/implementing the information into his/her daily routine.

The knowledge arc is depicted in green color, as s/he has been through data [red color] and information [yellow color] and is now ready to face the challenges of life [ready to go, depicted by green color].

Once having enough knowledge, by virtue of age and been through enormous experience over time, s/he has wide ocean of wisdom [blue color] in front of him/her to explore and find ‘self’ through reflecting and self actualization.

The line demarcating the circle of ‘360 Degrees’ through the center, cutting it half up with Data, Information, Knowledge and Wisdom and half down with Imagination and Vision, is ‘Observation’ [360 Degrees Plus, depicted in various colors], as it is observation of the colorful world around him/her, which is enabling a kid to have a deep insight [through observation] into data and convert it into information through schooling, with the help his/her teachers and based on his/her personal life experiences, to convert that information into knowledge.

The journey to understand life begins with imagination [depicted in maroon color, as it can be useful, if proven, scientifically and/or logically, or may be dangerous, if based only on personal biases], which is the driving force to understand data, information, knowledge, and wisdom, through observation. Again it is the observation, which enables him/her to open up a whole new world of wisdom while visualizing life through his/her mind.

Everyone has his/her vision [depicted here in white color], that vision would be small if s/he is limiting himself or herself only to data, it grows with information, knowledge and wisdom.

Vision is seeing the invisible, and invisible is only visible when there is light all around, and light is depicted with white color. White color also reflects, that there is no ambiguity and the person can only be clear about his/her purpose of being alive is through acquiring knowledge. Knowledge is wide spread all around and we can get that knowledge by making use of imagination through close observation.

The real vision is completed when the circle of life is completed after the completion of 360 degrees through imagination, and you get wisdom, that’s why Einstein once said:

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Yet another student came up with another explanation of ‘observation’ line and told me that it touches all the arcs in the diagram, showing that data, information, knowledge, wisdom and/or imagination can have meaning, if and only if, we observe everything with deep thinking, to understand the hidden meaning of life, thus comprehending the very purpose of our existence.

PS:
Since this blog is the continuation of my previous blog adding OBSERVATION as the addition, I like to add one final point here:
“That is one of the reasons why, we have OBSERVATORIES, which are a huge source of information gathering. The information thus gathered, when processed at the ground station, will open up a whole new world, full of wisdom, before us.

Sajjad Hussain

Arts, Eduaction, Leadership, Management, Motivation, Philosophy, Science, Self development, Symbolism, Vision, Wisdom

Reverse Thinking


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This is in continuation with my previous blog Ticking Clock.

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Any bottle, be it medicine or ketchup, in order to get the content out from inside the bottle, you need to open it up by moving the cap counterclockwise. Even the door lock of your house can only be opened, if the key is moved counterclockwise.

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Is it not baffling your mind that how on earth there is semblance of symmetry in all the things around us. I am sure that the person who thought about the cap on the bottle to be moved counterclockwise to open, and the person who invented the lock in the first place, were two different people, but they thought the same way for something to open.

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Now let’s find out how is it linked with my previous blog. In my previous blog, I have talked about clockwise movement of our life for gauging the age, with the counter clockwise movement of heavenly bodies. My understanding about these movements (I may be wrong) is that actually it is counterclockwise move which opens up anything, be it your mind.

Most of the people think the way everyone is thinking (to get to understand what do I mean by this analogy, read my blog by following the link Against the Odds, whereas in order to get to understand the hidden meaning of life, you will have to start thinking the other way round, which will open up altogether new vistas.

In electro-magnetics, the right hand rule is a way to predict the direction of a force in a magnetic field. To predict the behavior of positive charges, use your right hand. To predict the behavior of negative charges, use your left hand. 

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Amazingly if you look at the concept above, you will see that the counterclockwise movement of your right hand is taken as positive and the thumb directs you in the positive Y direction. The negativity is attributed to left hand and the counterclockwise movement of your left hand will direct you in the negative Y direction, and clockwise movement of your left hand will direct you in the positive Y direction.

(I am sorry to admit that quite a few concepts are not as easy to digest as I am trying to make them understandable to you. I can only request you to please bear with me on this count)

According to Neuro-scientists, the right brain thinks artistically whereas the left thinks logically, which  in a way substantiates one of my previous arguments described in my another blog Art vs Science.

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In order to be logical in your approach, you need to make use of your mind artistically first and then let it think in the reverse direction to end up in a logical conclusion.

That thinking would come your way, when you start thinking against the usual thought process and that is only possible when you open your mind through ‘Reverse Thinking.’

Continues in the next blog ….. Discus Throw

Sajjad Hussain

 

 

 

Arts, Eduaction, Ethics, Literature, Self development, Symbolism, Vision, Wisdom

Truth Lies


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Read between the lines is one of the phrases, which is often said by the intellectuals to understand the hidden meaning, especially while reading a newspaper. Because the real story behind a news is usually between the lines, it is a diplomatic way of hiding the truth and conveying the message to the right quarters between the lines.

A lined paper is usually white in color with black lines and whatsoever is written on the lines is also usually of black color but the white space in between remains white.

If we look at the symbolic meaning of black and white then, the black color is depicted as ignorance, whereas white reflects knowledge. So the true knowledge is somewhere between black written words, hidden between white lines.

Usually, it is our perception that whatever we see, we believe, without giving a second thought to what we are seeing, is not the truth. The real truth is hidden somewhere in between those black written lines.

The ‘lie’ which is portrayed as ‘truth’ actually lies, in between the black words and the truth lies somewhere between the lines. So from now on, learn how to read between the lines, to seek the real Truth.

Watch out for the Truth that lies!

 

Sajjad Hussain

 

Arts, Eduaction, Philosophy, Science, Self development, Symbolism, Vision, Wisdom

Tunnel Vision


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You must have had a chance to go through a tunnel while travelling to country side or even within the city through an underpass. A tunnel is a closed capsule type path open on both the ends, but at times it is closed at one end as well.

While entering a tunnel you might have noticed that it was open all around before entering the tunnel but the moment you entered in, it all turned out to be closed and it’s mostly dark inside, unless lit by the government to facilitate the commuters.

Let me make an analogy, when you are not thinking, you are bombarded by a lot of data and information scattered all around, but the moment you start thinking, all your diversions are focused on to single thought you are thinking, to convert that data and information into knowledge through continuous experimentation. It’s like roaming in a dark tunnel in search of light.

The moment you are out of tunnel, you are free to move around, wherever you want to, but the moment you get into the tunnel, you are left with no choice but to move in the direction of the tunnel, even if you don’t know if there is light at the end of the tunnel. Your intent then is, to get out of it, as soon as possible, or we can say, you feel suffocation being in there.

Same analogy goes with your thought process, when you are not thinking, you are free to think, whatever you want to, but the moment you are focused on to a single point agenda to think, it is like you are entering into a tunnel. You try to diversify yourself in that thought process, which is like you are trying to get out of it, which actually leads you to the many facets linked with that thought, and that’s how you come up with new ideas, yet all these ideas are very much associated with that thought process you are already in.

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Being outside the tunnel is like art, whereas, science is all about getting into a tunnel and then trying to find the way out of it, and during this entire process, it comes across new ideas and new solutions for the same issue or problem at hand. It keeps getting into a new problem and then tries to find the way out of it (this tunnel vision is basically our own thought process) which leads us to new vistas scattered all around.

Art is an open thought process, whereas science is a closed loop, where your thought process is more focused then scattered.

Sajjad Hussain

Arts, Eduaction, Leadership, Management, Motivation, Self development, Symbolism, Vision, Wisdom

Pyramid of Knowledge


While studying management, I use to wonder, why the management model is always a pyramid, on top of which there is always a one man (CEO) of the company. Another thing used to boggle my mind was that if it would have been a rectangle or square, what would have gone wrong and then came the idea of coming up with this blog.

During school days a kid is taught a number of subjects, like language, science, arts, literature, music, history, civics, religion, maths, and quite a few others depending on the country where he is being taught. At times the books he is to carry along out weigh his own weight. I use to think how a kid could learn these many subjects, when we grown up adults do not comprehend quite a few simple subjects.

As he keeps progressing towards his higher education, the number of subjects being taught, starts reducing, and when he goes for the highest degree (i.e. PhD), he is only required to study one subject and that also, not the whole of it, but a part of it, at a micro level.

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Is it not unfair with the kids. Would it not have been better if he would have been taught one subject in his first year of education, two subjects in 2nd and so on, as shown in the diagram.

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But then after having a deep thinking, I came up with the answer, that the learning capability of a kid is far more than an adult and as he grows in age the learning curve starts decreasing and thereafter, he is only able to make analogies based on his learning and experience over the years to draw conclusions. If we deviate from the usual method of learning as is being practiced across the globe, we will have a whole generations of individuals having a myopic view of the world.

The pyramid thus formed will be unstable as shown here under in comparison with the usual method of education.

The capability of a kid at the initial learning stage, although is greater than a full grown adult, but his ability to make connections of various subjects to draw conclusions to solve problems is limited.

The kid in his early stages of life is only taught to play with data and gradually bombarded with information. Making use of the mind when he is able to process the information is able to convert it into knowledge through the ability to make analogies and draw conclusions. This ability comes at a very later stage in life through education and experience. The pyramid thus formed is highly stable as the base is wide and strong.

When one reaches on top through knowledge, he gets the capability to see, what others can’t see and that is called VISION and the person having that vision becomes a VISIONARY.

Sajjad Hussain

Arts, Eduaction, Leadership, Motivation, Philosophy, Self development, Symbolism, Vision, Wisdom

Life of Mind


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If I want to sow a rose plant (why rose, will be known to you later), I will use its seeds, put them into the soil, water the soil and wait, until a bud is sprouted out of it. Once the flower is out of the bud, it starts spreading its fragrance around and then with the passage of time, it will die down, after completing its life cycle.

Now if I want to save its fragrance for later use, I will separate it from the plant, and squeeze its juice into a bottle and throw away the mutilated petals into the garbage. The fragrance is saved in the bottle, and can be used as and when needed.

When a baby is conceived inside the womb, first of all his body starts taking the shape, once the body is complete, then his soul gets the spirit and then after completing his gestation period, he is born. Spends his life from childhood to adulthood to parenthood and after completing his life cycle dies. When he dies, his spirit is taken out (by God) and his body is left to be buried or cremated as per that individual’s beliefs.

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If we compare the two situations written above, we will find astonishing similarities. Bud is like the body conceived inside the womb, full grown flower is like adulthood and squeezing the fragrance is like spirit being taken out of the body and throwing of the petals is like the body is buried or cremated.

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Now I will try to find out another analogy out of it, to understand the topic. It’s been scientifically proved that the human brain keeps growing until the age of 20 – 21 years and after that it starts shrinking. That could be the reason that a kid is sent to school and then college and then university so that his mental faculty is grown to its fullest by the time he reaches the age of 20 years, because after that, whatever he would be learning would be more based on his life experiences rather than new learning.

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The learning so acquired by the age of 20 years would remain with him as long as he keeps upgrading it with his experiences through continuous thinking and learning. If he fails to make use of his learning while his brain starts shrinking, he will start loosing track of the information he has acquired over the years, to be used at the later stages of his life. A disease called Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life. Memory loss is an example.

The growth of our mental faculty is like the bud, nourishing it with knowledge through education is like injecting fragrance into the rose. Squeezing the rose and extracting its fragrance is like forcing the mind, to leave its comfort zone and think out of the box to see, what others can’t see. The outcome of making use of the knowledge so acquired, are the words of wisdom (WoW), coming from people having knowledge and spreading them (WoW) to make a better world, is like using the rose fragrance and making the surrounding afresh.

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These ‘Words of Wisdom’ (WoW) are the fragrances with which the world will keep smelling, even when the body carrying that mind would no more be around.

Sajjad Hussain