Tag Archives: better

Old School vs. New School

And when I say old school… I mean OLD school. This article is about appreciating those traits that made Greek Academies so great and the current College System… so, so lame. History repeats itself, they say. And looking at the past for knowledge, is a GREAT way to help build a better future.

Let’s start at the beginning.

Students who went to the academies in Ancient Greece went there because they wanted to learn. It was this thirst for knowledge that drove students to visit their classrooms, not a need for a diploma or social pressure.

Greek students choose their teachers. They weren’t assigned to teachers randomly.

Greeks students honored their teachers by referring them to as “master” or “mentor”. Not Mr. Jones, Missy, or simply Emily. Formalities aside, respect toward educators is a thing that is quickly deteriorating.

Ancient students were free to leave a classroom whenever they wanted, and a teacher could refuse to give classes to a disrespectful student.

Students read books because they genuinely wanted to learn, not because of some test or examination.

Greek Academies ran on donations/sponsors…. not on student’s money.

IN THE END

It’s the over-complicated society, the over-complicated life, and over-complicated regulations that have ruined the education system.

It’s a shame how the entire SYSTEM is geared towards teaching students how to work, but NOT how to live. Sure, it’s the parent’s job to take care of the LIFE lessons … but happens to kids with bad parents? or a dumb ones? or broken homes?….. sadly, there is few people around to guide these lost teenagers.

Old School

Read —–> Learn —–> Be a better person

New School

Read —–> Take tests —–> Get diploma —–> Work —–> Make money

In the Society of the XXI Century

Seems like helping students make “future” money is more important than helping them find happiness.

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Filed under Education, History

Utopia vs. Society and Catholic traditions

Utopia, a book written about that a perfect society. Sadly, 500 years into the future, we are still far from achieving such a thing. The world is still full of the same war, poverty, hatred and tiranny that Thomas More observed in 16th century England. Since More´s Utopia is based on the non-existence of money and the sharing of goods (socialist ideals) many of his proposal´s are irrelevant in the capitalist world of today. I will thus focus on: 

Those Utopian proposals that are applicable in a capitalistic society. (some will shock you… trust me)

1. Catholic clerical marriage: Thomas More, a deeply religious catholic himself, believed marriage should be a option available to priests. A priest´s wive is encouraged, not required, to lead a life of commuity help. That way, a motherly figure is made available to give advice about children/family values, should someone seek it. (such measure should also help solve the Catholic Church´s current pedophilia scandal)

2. Few laws and no lawyers: the more simple and clear the law is, the more just it is considered. The fewer the number of laws the better. In order to avoid lawyer´s attempt at circumventing laws and blurring the truth (a practice QUITE common in today´s legal system): everyone over the age 18 will have the obligation represent himself in court.

3. Pleasure as the only and principal source of human happiness: be this pleasure of a spiritual or mundane nature. This pleasure should never come at the expense of suffering (own/another´s), produce excesive fatigue or be followed withdrawal symptoms. Maintaining a healthly, physical and mental balance is considered the greatest of all pleasures.

4. Yes to Euthanasia: Eutasiania is acceptable as long as it´s voluntary and only when the patient is no longer able to carry out his vital functions. Not only is it viable alternative, but it´s considered an honorable death for those seeking to avoid living a life of torment for themselves and their loved ones.

5. Seven Supreme Rulers: elections are to be held anually and two of the ¨rulers¨ are local gobernors, who switch every week. (Instead of two changing rulers, I propose two ¨rulers¨ of a racial minority). This reduction of the political system would truly help reduce the burocratic/political bickering that dominates the politics of today. There are still of course regional elections and governors in charge of the need of their locality.

Thomas More (1478-1538)

6. Pre-Marriage ¨Peep Show¨ and Age Limit: Thomas More states that the age limit for marriage should be 18 for women and 21 for men. This might seem rash, but taking into account the actual high porcentage of divorces; establishing a 21 year uni-sex marriage limit might be good idea after all. Also, More proposes that before the wedding is pronounced, couples should be allowed to see  each other nude during a brief one minute ceremony. This is done in order to avoid traps or unpleasant after-marriage revelations. So sex or no sex, one should at least get a preview of your companion´s nude body before the wedding.

7. Forced Social Labor for Criminals: Thomas More proposes death for grave crimes (first-degree murder/rape…), and enslavement (forced social service) for the rest of crimes. Forced social service in which ¨slaves¨ that present good conduct and behavior are rewarded back with their freedom and those ¨slaves¨ that commit another crime or escape while serving time are killed. I propose replacing the ¨killing¨ part with perpetual arrest. Such measures will greatly discourage ANY kind of crime.

8. Religious tolerance: the belief that in the end we all worship or seek to obtain closer access to the same God. The religious beliefs of all others are to be respected. (atheists included, More said, even if he himself found their logic irrational/despicable). Those who incite violence through religion, and can´t be dissuaded, are arrested as criminals.

9. New Type of Confession: of all the catholic sacraments this is the one whose fundations on the Scriptures is the most shaky and dubious. Thomas More proposes that a real, pure confession should be made by kneeling in front of the person wronged and pleading for the forgiveness of the sin commited.

10. Future Buildings with a minimun three floor height: the future is in building up, not sideways. This way we help to better preserve our natural resources, drainage areas and ecosystems (forests, prairies…)

Human Fraternity Above all Else

Without a doubt, Thomas More was a visionary man with ideas way ahead of his time. He believed that nature invited all mortals to mutually help one another in the search of a happier life. Humans should be able to look at each other as brothers and be able to put aside all religious, political or social differences. (More himself didn´t believe money should exist)

I quote from his book: What shall I think of the rich men who exploit the poor daily? In reality they get away with it, not through their own squemes, but through the protection of our own laws. [… ] I see the sprouting republics of today – God forgive me – like a group of rich people who seek, in the shadows and in the name of the republic, only their own benefit. [ … ] When the rich manage set these social traps in the name of all, their own and that of the poor people, they pass on to become respectable laws.

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Special thanks to those loyal readers that´ have helped me reach the 1000 visit mark. You are the reason I write.

If you have ideas or topics for future posts, be sure to share them in the comment´s section.

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Filed under Books, Culture

They should have known better…

Instinct, Adrenaline, Boxing. In order of appearance these all befell upon him… befell upon him as he found himself facing a group of 8 goons…. eight goons who messed with the wrong ¨he¨

If the red layer isn´t there, you ain´t a real man I swear

How did he get in this situation? That´s interesting… well for one it all started around 10:30 pm, when a group of buddies convinced him to go out partying.

While hesitant at first, after drinking one beer he cheered up and decided to make the most out of the night. They went disco. He drank a couple beers. He was having a good time talking to two women at the bar. He starts dancing. Until suddenly there came a Little man.  A Little man with a tiny hand. The Little man decided to walk while sticking an elbow to HIS throat. HE didn´t think that was right so he smacked a punch into the Little Man´s face… naaa, he didn´t smack the Little Man… well not till later.

Back with him. He decides that elbow in throat is not cool, that stuff won´t fly… So he turns around and tells the Little Man to lower his shoulder. The Little man gets upset and decides to make a ¨show¨ of it. From now on, the Small fellow wouldn´t speak a word to him. Even then, he decides to try to settle a deal. All he wants to do is party, he ain’t looking for a bad time. But the Little man doesn´t listen. After thirty seconds of talking, the Little Man gets backed up by Tall guy, guy #3, and guy #4 . He looks around an can at least count 8 goons surrounding him… Then out of nowhere Tall guy slaps he in the face pretty strong. He is taking bullshit no more.

Instinct kicks in. His mental state lowers itself to almost primitive levels: he have just been physically aggressed. He does not believe in violence, but there are certain boundaries and this Tall guy had just crossed the top one.

Turn. His right punch is already ripping through the air… its desired destination coming dead on close. The Tall guy hasn´t stopped smiling by the time the knuckles make contact with the nose. Tall guy recoils backwards in pain. He then turns and jabs the Little Man in the face, and follows up with a straight punch at guy #3´s chin.

The adreline spikes up. He steps back and is punched in the elbow and the cheek by guy #4. He doesn´t feel any… any pain that is. The fourth guy then slumbers forward and tries to wrestle with him. But he is already twisting his torso. That twist allows him to break away quickly and punch the fourth guy straight in the brow. The adrenaline rush still active, he looks around to see there are still four more college kids around him…

Then finally there comes the boxing, he zig zags his way across the dance floor and then manages to land a punch in guy # 5 face. He then pivots to quickly power punch guy # 6 in the nose. All of this is just a dance, a reaction, a trained instinct. For by the time guy # 7 has stepped in front of him, a left fist is already striking cheekbone. He has no time to lose. By the time he gets down from the scaffolding, he has already smacked seven different faces while only taking two hits in return. He makes his way to the bouncers as seven humiliated faces give chase, two of them recently iniated members of the Black-eyed Peas.

Who is he?

¨He¨ could be you, he could be me, he could be a friend, he could be anybody….
Only one thing is for certain: he wasn´t a coward. He knew his own limits, how far he was willing to allow other people to disrespect him. Words are just words…. and physical aggression, physical aggression. The second he felt the palm make contact with his ear and forehead, he stung back.

You see, he does not believe in violence. he is civilized man, but he also knows that deep down we are all still in touch with our instinct. And when our instinct cries with outrage due to injustice: he doesn´t think too much, he reacts. He reacts to protect his honor, he reacts to protect his family name, but more importantly he reacts because he is ¨right¨.

I guess the moral of the story is that one should avoid fighting as much as possible, but when fighting comes banging at your doorstep: don´t be afraid to knock back. Cause if you don´t, prepare to have your doorstep trashed everyday for the rest of your life.

Shakespeare: Brave men only die once…
Cowards die many times before their death…

By the way… what ever happened to guy #8? Guess he will never know.

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Filed under Conflict, Inspiration