The world in which we live is a very fascinating world. People live vicariously through the fabric of their emotions, intellect and experiences. Ignorance is by definition not knowing something and what which we don’t know, can really hurt us. However, our very own ignorance comes from many sources.
For instance, human beings get a sense of value from the things recognized or not recognized to be familiar. We naturally tend to seek fulfillment, avoid meaninglessness, sadness and conflict in our lives.
As if by default, we are inclined to increase this need of self-fulfillment through our senses and multiply our possessions. We could become selfish and foolish at times, in our private quest for completion.
Society must ask if our human path to fullness is only valid through these means: self gratification and possession multiplication. Can we ever be fully satisfied with our material possessions? These are some questions that touch on the core of our lives, especially if this matter is one of importance and significance.
Another one of the reasons for a lack of self-awareness is that we tend to shield our biases, consciously or unconsciously, even when evidence falls in on the other side of our opinion. We conform and succumb to the society at large. Our ability to distinguish this one-sidedness will make us stronger individuals, even when we disagree on socio-political or even religious points of view, sometimes is ok to disagree.
The most important tool in preventing ignorance is intentionality. Often times, when people lapse into ignorance is when we slip into laziness. Contrary to popular belief, alienating ourselves from the media, the world, our family or religion will not enable us to combat ignorance. Ignorance still exists in a vacuum; however ignorance still remains a possibility.
If we develop a critical mindset and give ourselves to analysis, then a motivation to learn will grow into knowledge – which is the opposite of ignorance. If we complacently watch whatever happens in our television, then we might become enslaved with whatever happens in the other side of the tube. If I develop a technical mindset regarding the intricacies by which I view media (framing, cinematography, lighting, presentation, plot, etc) then that frame of mind develops into something that I am actively involved, instead of something to be passive about.
The same goes for participating in a religious setting, If I idly sit and engulf my mind without engaging my critical thinking apparatus, then the experience becomes as stagnant as last night’s weather news. Preventing ignorance goes way beyond collecting a bunch of facts from x, y or z subjects. Preventing ignorance has a lot to do with engaging reason and intellect.
My mom always told me “he who does not know, is like he who does not see” and what a great point that is, If we dont know something, is like not seeing it, until it hits us. Ignorance could be bliss, but knowledge is power. We must wield to knowledge to experience the fullness of its power before intentionally using our minds. Having said that, in the times of the Bible, King Solomon, who was one of the kings with the most wisdom throughout the land, stressed his proverbs with encouragement that knowledge, understanding and wisdom are as gold and silver.
Therefore knowledge, understanding and wisdom will shield the simple-mindedness from ignorance and keep us in the path to truth. True self-fulfillment does not come from material possessions alone, but from a knowledge that provides meaning, in a life lived with intentionality.