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On Creativity and Education

June 4, 2009 16 comments

School days have finally commenced. Students and teachers are once again lining up the gates and swarming like ants to catch the 7:30 flag ceremony. I could draw from their faces the excitement for another school-year adventure and the longing for further learning among the few. Others were pouting because the comfortable summer vacation is over and the teacher looked threatened for their comfort zones may be wrecked once again by the opening of classes. The contrast – which I find very amusing – is very apparent in their faces but the question of “education” which revolves around the teacher-student affinity seemed like a ghost hanging around intangibly. Do they really think of “education” upon stepping on the school premises? Do students and teachers alike think of essential education apart from the daily ordeal in school? Or do they simply want to go to school because education is a pre-requisite to a better future? And are teachers really chaste in their vocation to provide quality instructions as mandated by decree, or are they merely after a stable salary that the government is giving them without minding the thirsty souls of children that confront them five days a week? I really don’t know the answer. All I know is both student and teacher have the responsibility to make education a way of life and not just a ladder for achievement. Yet the heavier part lies much on the mentors whose purpose is to establish concrete learning among young minds and to orchestrate the students to understand the importance of education. As of now, let’s hope for the better days when we can answer these questions with certainty and conviction.

The other day, my officemate was complaining that her daughter was enrolled back to the regular class after a couple years in the special science program of Leon Elementary School. I didn’t give much attention to that. What really shocked me was when she mentioned the effacement of special science classes on all public schools. I really don’t know the reason why DepEd would eradicate such useful programs among public institutions now that it’s started to pick up some fruitful academic results and provided a huge progress on the demarcation of Philippine education. If ever there is a flaw in the current program, total effacement is not the answer but a simple modification on some of the basic management. But whatever their reason I hope that they have a better alternative that would not end up as another white elephant. Again let’s hope for the better.

This morning one of my most beloved brilliant bloggers, Meewa, shared a very brilliant video clip from Youtube. It speaks of education and creativity which I really find very educational and hilarious. Since knowledge is meant to be shared, I posted this video for interested pals. Since it took us more than a decade to finish proper schooling, we should be able to spare a moment for a 20-minute video clip on education and creativity. I promise you will love it.  Please bear with the British accent though.

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P. S. 1. Mir, thanks for this educational and entertaining lecture. Had he been my professor, I would have turned out to be a lecturer too. Hahaha! We’re free to dream, di ba? I think my little super kulit tots, S____ Paz and Christian, will be home schooled too. I also wish them to be part of TED too.

2. Another admired brilliant blogger, Gabi, posted this question: “What does it mean to be educated?” I finally picked an answer: It means creatively imparting your education to others.

Categories: arts, education

The Artist and the World in Time

March 3, 2009 8 comments
"Without poets, without artists, men would soon weary of nature's monotony. The sublime idea men have of the universe would collapse with dizzying speed. The order which we find in nature, and which is only an effect of art, would at once vanish. Everything would break up in chaos. There would be no seasons, no civilization, no thought, no humanity; even life would give way, and the impotent void would reign everywhere."   --  Guillaume Apollinaire

"Without poets, without artists, men would soon weary of nature's monotony. The sublime idea men have of the universe would collapse with dizzying speed. The order which we find in nature, and which is only an effect of art, would at once vanish. Everything would break up in chaos. There would be no seasons, no civilization, no thought, no humanity; even life would give way, and the impotent void would reign everywhere." -- Guillaume Apollinaire

What makes an artist? Some claim that the artist is a product of an external-objective inspiration; others say that it is wrought by a Freudian projection of ego that needs to be channeled through brush strokes or the inkblots in poetry. Although these might be valid answers, I still hold one single notion of a true artist: the one formed by pain – either caused by obscurity, or by the complexity of political systems that either oppress or prevent one from realizing herself – but reciprocally finds beauty in it. Remember that an artist life is deeply wedded with pain yet exalts it with jubilation. It is through this pain that an artist has able to understand the world better.

To add more, an artist speaks with experience and understands the way of life. She is like a saint in the middle of the street stressing her isolation from the crowd; yet, despite being ridiculed and misunderstood, never departs from what is real and continues to nourish life with joy and holiness amidst the majority. She knows the way of the world yet humbly abides in the will of God. Yes, God, because she knows that life is temporary and that our mortal being is nothing but a mere manifestation of a higher being. Although she finds overwhelming wonders in this world, she perpetually seeks the permanence of beauty in a higher degree that can only be achieved by relating herself to the higher being. So she makes use of her life as instrument to make others realize of the passing world; and, despite the relative notions of practicality of having faith, she perpetually believes on a heavenly covenant that awaits man. In this unstable world, a flower may bloom for days but will never stay forever, for soon the wind will blow and fill the heavenly basin with torrent, then will clear out the view for a grandiose sun and the flower will die wilted under its heat. But unlike a flower, an artist will remain constant in her endeavor despite the changing winds and the hurdles of time. She knows her place in the plurality of the world, like a heart is deemed to be for one purpose – love. She is forever steadfast in her faith no matter how tempting the tides are, and even grows stronger with it the way sand solidifies into rock  in time. Her goal is one: to recreate the soul to bring it back to where it really belong by means of literature, of music, and of encompassing colors of love.

But an artist lives like a normal man does. What distinguishes her from the rest of the pact is her demeanor in dealing with the world. She loves the world bound in time but better loves the world that awaits permanence for all of us. An ordinary man will cling to time for direction while an artist try to ride with time with great control of herself. Thus, an artist always keeps her ground in order to read the signs of time and transposes her knowledge through her art.

When some become slaves of time, an artist, on the contrary, struggles to transcend it. By transcending it, she understands the world better and the mechanisms that cause man to act. But transcending it is already an explicable “pain embraced” because time, by its illusive nature, creates perdition that draws man away from the truth (from self and from the world). Yet, through this pain, an artist is wrought and that her soul is fulfilled. With how the world transpires now, the complexity of life increases and human systems are but pell-mell hindrances to the true realization of one’s self. It is then the role of an artist to stand out from this demeaning ordeal and to be saints in all accord. After all, an artist is known to be a re-creator of beauty, a true philosopher, and a herald of change.; and that an artist, against all odds, has be a Miracle to humanity, that even when her limbs become lifeless, her lips will never cease to praise: Ah! What a Wonderful World!

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P.S. 1. Thoughts for two great artists in my bloglist: Mira and Gabi. If time is eternal, so the hope of an artist prevail because her aspirations transcends it…when others look at the world at a pace length, an artist eyes looks at the way beyond.

2. When science scuttles for development and understanding, art beautifies and exalts everything.

Categories: arts, philosophy Tags: , ,