Thursday, January 4, 2018

Holistic Education in the Sciences

Recently  North Korean missiles and experiments with nuclear weapons is not only a concern for South Korea but the whole world. This advance in scientific knowledge, mathematics, physics, and technology leaves a science professor emeritus sad. He writes in the  Kyeongyang magazine on the subject.

South Korea's pursuit of material well-being gives him pain. After the destructive Korean War, efforts were made to develop our scientific knowledge and education for development. All participated in the construction of a new society and we saw the miracle that followed with pride. However, with the rapid process of development, we have done harm to our educational programs in an excessive pursuit of material improvement.

In 2015 we have indications that things were to change. In the Character Education Promotion Act, briefly: "character education is to educate students to develop a well-balanced and good inner state and to nurture the personalities and competencies of human beings needed for harmoniously living together with others in communities and with nature." Probably the first such act ever promoted by any country.

However, will this be the reality in our schools? How do schools go about realizing this ideal? Is it the task of principals, teachers, the placing of placards on premises? Implementation of the ideas expressed will not be easy. We are familiar with various ideals in our educational history: forming scholars and not to dirty one's hands. A desire for knowledge, harmonized with practicality, hands with the head has enabled the west to leave behind many scientific achievements. Imitation of the west is going on but changing the face of our present climate will not be easy.

God's creation is not fickle, it's orderly and beautifully spread out around us. Many look for miracles but all nature working together in an orderly fashion is a miracle, what more is necessary?

Adults have the obligation to give the younger generation the right understanding of reality. However, we see lies and deception the inside and outside are different. We see the untruthful words of politicians, conflict between industrialists and workers. What are the young people seeing? We are not a good example of what kind of education can be transmitted.

Integral, holistic education is not only for the young but for all. Among the Korean saints, we have nobles, those with much education, nobodies, a court lady, farmers, storekeepers, the handicapped and those who weren't able to recite the Our Father or Hail Mary. They were persons in pursuit of God and the practicing of the virtues. A true human is to live in silence and find time to reflect on death.

Study of natural science requires according to our writer the need for a foundation in holistic basics of education. Developing of nuclear armaments and the training of technicians without concern for the object of their study and use is wrong. We are created to continue our studies until death and develop and grow in practice of virtue. The two of them go together.

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