Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Remember, it's our world. together

I just sat and listened to someone talk at impressionable young minds, presenting a tough topic in a very factual manner, in a way and with a meaning with which I very much struggle and disagree.
And I didn't speak up, and I didn't leave; over time I have learned that would have been impolite, rude, and inappropriate. After all, she had the floor, and it was her opinion that was the important one.
Looking back, it could have been an optimal starting point for conversation, together- to learn together.

It made me think beyond the scripture, beyond my understanding of a preacher/parishoner relationship, and beyond the moments where I felt my soul being irked.

Something is wrong. Our system is inherently broken. The "our" in everything is broken. We don't know of an our. We know of teacher, student, city, country, yankee, southern belle, easterner, westerner, preacher, parishioner, leader, follower. The "our" in everything we learn is obliterated. We're not taught about the communal "us" here together; we're taught about "these guys" and "those guys." From early on we're taught: to listen to our teachers. That learning and memorizing are one in the same. To put answers on a piece of paper. That the x is bad and the check is good. That the teacher knows the distinction. Instead of being guided to learn how to think, we're taught what to think. We're taught that, over time, our once empty brain will be filled by these teachers with knowledge. We're taught that we will learn that one "right answer." That there is a right answer.

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