Thursday, October 11, 2007

Shattering Amber

Today heralded the announcement of this year's Noble Prize for literature. The winner is Doris Lessing whose most famous work is The Golden Notebook. Have I ever read The Golden Notebook? Regrettably least not yet. I plan on reading it not because of Ms. Lessing winning the Noble Prize, but since it delves into the internal dialogue of the characters and also for the fact that Ms. Lessing's formal education ended at the age of 13.

In my years since college some of the smartest and most innovative people I have met have not gone to college. I think it is important to remember that college is not for everyone nor does it instantly make someone intelligent or successful. Education is more about constantly being open to new ideas, thoughts and being willing to learn everyday from the multitude of teachers and learning experiences life throws into our path. To be an enlightened person you have to seek knowledge and also take an active role in your own education--you can't be passive or lethargic about evolving.

In days of old great thinkers wrote numerous letters to other great thinkers in order to exchange information and broaden the scope of each other's thoughts. You must remain engaged with the world at all times to glean the most from living in such a world. I am constantly reminded of this fact. I don't wish to remain static. As I age I don't wish to be like one of those insects captured in one moment in time indefinitely in amber. As much as I enjoy writing, my passion really is in research, which is not so extraordinary when I think how much I gravitate towards reading and collecting. Writing in many ways is the way of sharing amassed knowledge. Creative writing for me is a way of sharing amassed knowledge filtered through myths, dreams and fantasies.

The old maxim of learning something new everyday remains a thread of hope and promise for me and casts light upon looming darkness. My perspective shifts into one of anticipation and joy in the discovery. The prospect that at least one new piece of information or that I may see something or someone in a different way each and every day means that every day is full of surprise and mystery...that all things are possible...that we can grow, change, enrich and blossom....

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