Have you ever wondered what the difference was between an intelligent person and an educated person? It almost seems like the two goes hand in hand. An intelligent person is someone who’s educated and an educated person is someone who is intelligent. Makes sense doesn’t it? It does but there’s more to it. I think that there’s a difference between the two words. Intelligence describes characteristics of the mind that incorporates many related abilities. Education is an accumulated set of knowledge that society has gathered and passed on to an individual that has an influential effect on the mind. Just because you have the education does not necessarily mean that you’re intelligent. And just because you’re intelligent does not necessarily mean that you’ve been educated.
One would assume that an educated person would hold the characteristic of being intelligent because they have they’ve attended school but that’s not always true. I’ve been to school with some people who weren’t so bright and I’ve known of incidences where a classmate would copy another student’s work. Two of those factors alone show that an educated person is not necessarily intelligent. On the other hand, someone who is not well educated can be considered intelligent. I have a few friends who did not pursue post secondary education but I considered them intelligent because they have the capacity to learn.
I believe that my father is the most intelligent person I know. He came from a background where education was scarce but that didn’t stop him gaining knowledge. You’d be surprised about what he knows and what he’s capable of learning. He grew up in a third world country, managed to learn the language of the surrounding countries, learned whatever there is to learn about automobiles, immigrated to Canada and is now tinkering around with online karaoke chat rooms. He went from having zero experience with a computer to hooking up a sound system into the computer so that he could sing online. He did not attending school and does not have the papers to show that he’s certified but he’s was able learn and comprehend.
The brain is a fascinating and very complex piece of machinery. It performs many functions and you don’t even know it. It’s absorbing information, processing it and storing it and you have no clue that it’s doing it. Some people think that we only use 10% of our brain but that’s such a small amount that it’s hard to believe. If you’re only using 10% of it, you’d be under utilizing it. It may seem like we’re only using part of it because we’re only doing one thing at any given time but you have to realize that it control a lot of your bodily functions. There are millions of neuron and they’re firing quite frequently. As you’re reading this, your brain is trying to make sense of it all and it’s working away to analyze what is being read.
You have to continue to use your bring or else you’ll waste it. When I was younger, I hated school and I swore that once I was done with college that I would not be attending any more school. I was attending school from the age of five until the age of twenty two. That’s about seventeen years of my life learning stuff that I didn’t find relevant at the time.
Most of you probably recall sitting in math class and arguing with the teacher that everything they were teaching isn’t practical in life. “When are we ever going to use that?” is a question that I’ve heard a lot of students asking. I remember asking the same question myself. There was no real life event that we could apply math to except for adding and subtracting money. I didn’t care too much about the odds of someone in my class having the same birthday as me. I didn’t care that there were numerous ways of arranging things. And I certain didn’t care that the ratio of the circumference to the diameter is 3.14159265358979323846…
If I didn’t care about all of those things, why exactly was I being taught them? I realize now that I was put in school so I can learn. And what I’ve realized even more, now that I’m attending university is that I’m learning to learn. If you’re smart enough to have the urge to pursue knowledge, you’re on the right path. You don’t have to know every single math formula or the chemical makeup of caffeine or what “Hello World!” is in binary. I do not believe that there is a limit as to how much knowledge you can obtain so long as you have the ambition to learn more than what you know.