Should One Learn Through Observation or Intervention?
Posted on: September 27, 2021.

Author: Prabhukrishna M, Content Creator/Chief Editor, Yokibu Editorial

It begins with this fundamental question: While all other living organisms live in perfect consonance with Nature by synchronizing their lives with the natural laws…

…why is it that humans are unable to form harmonious relationships with those other life forms and Nature? Why is it that humans alone behave so differently with Nature?

The answer: “Method of Education”. There are two ways in which learning can be enabled—observation and intervention. Subsequently, there arises two approaches to education—observational and interventional.

In the natural world, “observation”, by large, forms the primary means of learning for animal life. The ability to survive and sustain originates—or is acquired—from their respective social groups by observation.

Animals seldom experiment, and even if they do, it is solely to learn and acquire knowledge about the natural laws, to hunt more efficiently, or protect themselves better.

Animals learn through observation, and apply it in practice to “auto-discover” their inherent powers of survival by which predators become successful hunters and prey become successful survivors.

Be it the ruthlessly-efficient hunting ability of a predator, or the tree-climbing/nest-building ability of a survivor—it all needs smart thinking, planning and execution excellence.

Experimentation isn’t essential to their abilities—it only serves to supplement their observations. It is only observation that begets their elementary learning/knowledge—an intelligence the human race clearly lacks.

Only through observation does one become sensitive to and sentimental about—and kind, compassionate, foresighted, and wise towards—one’s immediate environment, and the ecosystem and Nature at large.

Greed, destruction, dissection, disagreement, dissatisfaction, and obsession widely manifests in people only through their self-centric, narcissistic pursuit of knowledge through intervention and experimentation.

No other life form on Earth exploits, contaminates, and destroys natural resources, plant life, and wildlife on as large a scale as the human race does…

…by experimenting with and intervening in the very functioning and organization of Nature. The problem here is neither about amassing knowledge being wrong, nor belittling the importance of such knowledge.

While assembling a repository of knowledge around us, are we sensitive to the environmental and ecological costs of acquiring that knowledge?

A gap in our knowledge system is spontaneously created—resulting in immeasurable, irreversible collateral damage—when we focus too much on the usefulness or utility value of our learning.

Interventional/Experimental Learning overrides Observational Learning, dominates and influences our learning space, and imposes its dictatorship on us, nurtured by—and nurturing—our need and greed.

The human race unwittingly suffers the effects of destroying Nature, while all other life forms live in perfect harmony with it—this is, at present, the pathetic state of humanity.

Children will benefit from moral and virtue-based education only if parents and teachers understand the difference between observational and interventional learning, and its ecological costs and consequences.


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