Ignorance manifests itself in every country. You would be forgiven for thinking this is neither worth your time, nor any notice, yet maybe, if more people began to expand their Consciousness on this urgent crisis of ignorance, increasing action could be taken to eliminate it.
Xenophobia, racism, ableism. All of these, and many more, could be dramatically improved in society with the absence of ignorance. Education is vital for the running of society; education, and empathy.
Social ignorance adds to the escalation of political ignorance too. When talking to a person who moans about the state of the country it’s easy to see how successful media, especially social media, has been in exploiting the naivety of a person lacking in the understanding of economy, politics and social policy.
Of course, people are entitled to their own personal beliefs – we live in a democracy after all – yet the online bullying disguised as debate has such power of persuasion that people can form an opinion without understanding it. Harlan Ellison said “you’re not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion. No one is entitled to be ignorant.” Whilst maybe a bit extreme, the point rings true: people have a duty to educate themselves.
So, next time someone says ‘ignorance is bliss’, correct them. Ignorance is voluntary stupidity: the afflicted consciously chooses a semi-aware existence, never understanding the intricacies of the world around them. Choosing to remove this blindfold, an individual can change the world.
As soon as I heard that question ideas began popping into my head, each more clichéd and unrealistic than the one before it. Crush Cancer. Terminate Terrorism. Wave Goodbye to World Hunger…
The possibilities are endless (clichéd, I know) but if we were truly given the power to solve any one of these problems forever, we would.
Yet what is the use in having the power to change the world if we have no world to live in? Global warming is not a problem for future generations: it is a problem now. President Hollande encapsulated the urgency quite simply – “We have a single mission: to protect and hand on the planet to the next generation”.
If the (countless) projections of climate change experts are correct, we could be the last generation to have the power to reduce the worst impacts of global warming. Yes, the solution is not as easy as a simple click of our fingers to make it disappear; we need a sustainable solution so that future generations do not face the same threat to their earth as we do today.
Creating a form of energy, which uses CO2 as a fuel, would not only dispense of our surplus of the gas that is polluting our atmosphere and causing higher temperatures year on year but also give us an unlimited source of energy.
This would, realistically, effectively end the majority of global warming for generations to come and allow us to provide the whole world with infinite energy to combat all those other problems…
Change. A simple word with a complex meaning. Humans have a love-hate relationship with the idea of change.
Our brains are wired to repeat the same actions over and over, regardless if that particular exercise is actually worth the time and the effort in the long run. It can be quite challenging to undertake the experience of change but the positive consequences are certain to have a monumental outcome.
Women’s rights, gender equality and racial discrimination. These are just three amongst many other mainstream, core issues that people living around the world wish to see dealt with. They are all complex matters that require exceedingly large amounts of attention, time and money – things which are desired by many, obtained by few.
So, why not start simply? Instead of making change, start being change. Start by looking at your attitude towards change and the way you perceive certain issues related to it.
Focus, in depth, on what you wish to change about yourself as opposed to devoting all your energy to pointless attempts at trying to manipulate the lives of others.
We must learn to view life from a different perspective and serve as an example to clear the way for others intending to follow our actions. Inspire, influence, impel.
I wish to change people’s understanding of change and how they go about it in their daily lives. As famously quoted by Gandhi, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” So, what are you waiting for?
Thank you to Aarya Handa, Kitty Price and Emma Stephenson, from years 8, 12 and 13 at Nottingham Girls’ High School, for contributing to our education feature! We at IN Magazine love to hear your thoughts!