• Uplifting Education

The Goal of Education

Ultimately, education is not an end in itself, but promotes the greater purpose of raising up productive citizens who fulfill their individual potential and who can make a contribution to their society and the world beyond. As we develop our knowledge, skills and technical expertise, we have the potential to be of enormous benefit to the larger society -- if only we have upright character, online integrity, and proper relationships with our family, community, and co-workers.

Cultivation of Heart

Mastery and morality necessarily intertwine. Whether we labor with our hands or with our head, whether we work with people or things, a strong conscience and a well-developed capacity to love make for a more ennobling contribution to the human community. Good doctors are not simply those who are fully knowledgeable in the practice of medicine, but those who also know how to treat their patients with love and respect. A great musician is not simply one who is well skilled at creative expression, but one who can uplift the spirit of others with his art.

Mastery and Heart

Mastery is also intertwined with ethics. Merchants must be honest in dealing with customers. Managers need to be guided by ethical considerations in treating their workers. Lawyers must not take advantage of those who trust them.

Mastery must be accompanied by a concern for preserving the natural environment. Love and care for nature are attributes of a healthy character. We may think of the planet Earth as a great mother who provides all the elements that nourish our body and keep it alive. We should treat nature as we would treat our own mother, with a feeling of gratitude for the life and nourishment that she constantly and unstintingly provides. The natural world can also be seen as an extension of our own body. Therefore, just as good character leads us to restrain our physical desires; it also leads us to restrain our greed in order not to abuse the environment.

Raising Productive Citizens

All three dimensions of education -- the cultivation of heart, education in norms, and education for mastery -- are involved in realizing one of the goals of education: raising up truly productive citizens. This goal of education is realized when the home, school, and community work in partnership to ensure that all three dimensions are in balance.