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- Consultation - Empowerment Discourse Human Nature Justice Knowledge

Education: The Driver of Social Transformation

In reference to human potential it has been said, “Regard man as a mine rich in gems of inestimable value. Education can, alone, cause it to reveal its treasures, and enable mankind to benefit there from.”
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Education is a fundamental right and duty of every soul. Education allows each person to manifest justice – to be able to see with their own eyes and hear with their own ears. It is by education that we learn to understand the world around us and to articulate the inspiration we find within ourselves. True education is a cause of humility; by it a person learns their finitude and takes up their duty to serve others. In this way, true education bestows wisdom upon an individual. False education serves the ego and cultivates attitudes of superiority and aloofness, and the knowledge acquired is used in improper ways. The acquisition of knowledge should be guided by our twofold moral purpose: developing the latent capacities of an individual, and empowering the individual to carry forward the very lofty task of civilization-building. Without education we are deprived of the powers of thought, articulation, and consultation which allow for the generation of knowledge, it’s application in our lives, and its diffusion to others; without education, we are deprived of fully manifesting our human nature and participating in the central process of social existence.
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Consider the importance of education as a human right and duty, and the role of the denial of education in situations of oppression.

What are the signs of a well-educated person, and by what means have they acquired knowledge? For what do they use knowledge?

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Justice

Rights and Duties

Current human rights philosophy maintains that personal prerogative defines social structure, and individuals can refuse any moral ties that they haven’t chosen. Institutions are seen as necessary insofar as they interface common interests of atomistic individuals; they simply provide procedures of interaction. Unless individuals chooses to bind themselves morally with others, this connection doesn’t exist; and rights are guaranteed independent of duty – rights, in fact, are used to protect one from collective interests.

Right, however, corresponds with duty. The duties that are connected to human rights derive from an individual’s two-fold purpose: personal development and contribution to society. The first duty of an individual is to recognize the spiritual forces in reality, respond to them, and manifest latent spiritual capacities. The right and freedom of belief and investigation of truth, for example, is created in order that one can fulfill this duty. The second duty is the advancement of civilization. As one moderates personal liberty with promotion of collective good, one shapes society in a way that facilitates far greater and truer freedom for every individual than the initial sacrifice required, thus tying individual and collective well-being together. Institutions and structures can be seen to aid in the formation of this balance.

The basis for human rights is the reciprocal relationship between individual duty and collective prosperity, as well as the duty of an individual to develop spiritual capacities. Justice can be seen as a moral and spiritual capacity, gradually developed, that binds the individual with the well-being of the community – knowing, obviously, that as the individual is a member of the whole, the well-being of all is the well-being of one.