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coberst
2005-Dec-24, 12:02 PM
Talents undiscovered

I have discovered that self-actualized learning is much more than meets the eye. Virtually everyone considers himself or herself to be a self-learner. This fact makes it difficult to engage anyone in a manner that they will not reject the subject as worthy of conscious consideration.

I would like to say that I consider self-actualized learning to be an end and not a means to some other end. ‘Self-actualized learning’ is a phrase I have chosen to represent a search for knowledge and understanding that is strictly for the purpose of knowing and understanding the self and the world.

The knowledge I seek as a self-actualized learner is disinterested knowledge. ‘Disinterested knowledge’ is knowledge that is not a means to some particular end. Also I am always guided by a question that I have created because I am interested in the answer to that question. My curiosity leads me to a question about a matter for which I wish to understand. In this way I always have a personal connection to guide my search. Often it may take months to reach a satisfactory understanding of the matter dealing with the question. Sometimes I never find a satisfactory understanding.

For me the self-developed question is vital for two reasons. I find that if I read with a question in mind I am a much more efficient reader and I am much more motivated; also if and when I finally reach an understanding of the matter in question I am elated. The second reason is that I consider the self-learning process, when guided by my curiosity and created question, is a kind of self-analysis. I feel that I am gaining more access to my matrix of ideologies; I am creating a conscious profile of myself through my questions.

Education, like many things, has an intrinsic value and an extrinsic value. The extrinsic value of education is money. The intrinsic value cannot generally be developed via a teacher/pupil relationship. I suspect that the intrinsic value of education is available only to the self-learner. The intrinsic value of education is knowing and understanding for its own sake. Self-actualized learning is what Socrates means when he makes the admonition “The unexamined life is not worth living.”

We have all received schooling that has been greatly influenced by the detachment from concern dictated by the physical sciences. To recover an attitude of concern, an association of consciousness with existence, will come in our society only through self-actuated learning (I think).

I think that a significant cadre of self-actualized learners would be of great importance to the advancement of an open society. I think the lack of such a cadre is why religion has become so dominant in American politics.

We are born with a set of talents and throughout life we modify, mold, and often are completely ignorant of members of this set. The set of talents we each possess is as unique to each person as our DNA. For the purpose of this essay I shall call this unique amalgamation of talents our own personal TNA.

The world recognizes and rewards certain TNAs. Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Einstein, Elvis etc. placed on display some part of their TNA and the world applauded and rewarded them. They could have, had they became conscious of them, displayed another set of TNAs and the world might have yawned.

I am interested in discussing talents not because the world applauds and rewards certain combinations. I am interested in discussing how we can become self-conscious of our own talents and why this is important both to the individual and to the community.

I suspect we can categorize talents as physical talents and intellectual talents. I wish to concentrate strictly on intellectual talents. I do not wish to speak about the superiority of any specific talent as to quality or quantity. I describe the TNA of interest as being intellectual just to disassociate a class of talents from physical ability. I would like to think of intellectual talents as being aptitudes or propensities to favor certain inclinations that are associated with mental activity as opposed to physical activity.

Words that might be included under the word ‘talent’ are: attitude, quality of mind, intellectual character, reading faces, spellers, retriever of words, memory, solicitous of others, taker of risks, psychology skills, abstract thinking, power-wielding, creativity, etc. The point being to include everything mental that is part of being human.

The reason I am interested in this talent consideration is because I suspect every one of us have many undiscovered talents. If so, then finding a way to uncover these talents is valuable to us and to the community.

sarongsong
2005-Dec-25, 09:04 AM
and mayhap more:
"...Why even I myself, I often think, know little or nothing of my real life,
Only a few hints, a few diffused faint clews and indirections I seek for my own use to trace out here.
...And I have dream'd that the purpose and essence of the known life, the transient,
Is to form and decide identity for the unknown life, the permanent..." Leaves of Grass

coberst
2005-Dec-25, 09:24 AM
So do you think that we have no possibility of bringing to consciousness these things that are the "real self"? Are we left only to the accidents of fate to bring to consciousness these important aspects of our humanity? Perhaps we need to learn Eastern culture with its meditations to help us reach that what we have but cannot see.

mugaliens
2005-Dec-26, 07:50 PM
Typical stuff I learned in college. Interesting, but haven't found any application in real life.

The thing that keeps me going are friends, family, and the satisfaction I get from doing a job well.