"Five percent of the people think; ten percent of the people think they think; and the other eighty-five percent would rather die than think."
Thomas Edison, 1847-1931
What about those that are not encouraged or allowed to think?? Or what about those whose thinking (quality and quantity) is purposely controlled by outside forces?
I recently saw two videos that have me thinking... After watching this and this (on this second one, only the first 10 minutes plus the last 5 minutes, thank you Cates), I decided to ask my girls what their passions are. In addition to giving them the academic school work that we think is important for them to know, wouldn't it be nice if we also provided a way for them to learn one or two things that they are really excited about? Granted, it's hard to discover your passion if you have had little or no exposure to lots of places and things and activities in the world, and we do keep pretty close to home. There just isn't a lot of opportunity living in a relatively small town in the wilderness, far away from fun things like science museums, art classes, and the like (and no TV), to even see what the choices are for "passions".
So, I asked each of my girls, "If your could learn how to do anything at all in the whole world, and choose your own method of learning it," (knowing how one of my kids feels about school books, hee hee), "WHAT WOULD YOU WANT TO LEARN?" The girls looked at me as if I were crazy, but after a few minutes they began to come up with some ideas. The longer I waited, the bigger and grander their ideas were, and the more excited they got! Their answers were enlightening to me.
Why have I never asked them this question before?? Maybe because I am afraid of their answers! You see, I believe that we all ought to develop our minds and bodies to our fullest God-given potential, as long as our pursuit of that fulfillment is truly for God's glory, and not our own. But I also believe that as Christian ladies, our bodies AND our hearts belong at home with our families, and that the most privileged and fulfilling and noble thing a woman can do with her life is to love and serve the Lord and her family full time. Does this leave room for an avid interest in microbiology, electronics, or travel?? Do I want to take a chance on steering my girls' hearts away from the home?! No, I don't. But did God not give us these other interests? How can they be used for His glory?
In God's economy, maybe the idea of "fulfilling our potential", at least intellectually, really has no value at all in the eternal scheme of things. (Do I hear cries of "BLASPHEMY!" from the education wing? Hold your rotten tomatoes.) Perhaps that is a humanistic philosophy. Is it really right to teach our girls to be ladies for the Lord ("keepers at home"), and, at the same time, allow them to pursue the field of law or engineering or communications?? I am looking for your input on this, particularly from those of you believe the Book and who are committed to training up your girls God's way. Can a girl follow her passion for astrophysics, and still be a devoted, committed, wife and mother with a servant's heart? Wouldn't the logical end of an interest in microbiology be research or medicine, and not a desire to be a SAHM? How do I reconcile this? Do we discourage them from pursuing things they can't do from home? Did God intend for a girl's passions to be limited to cooking and sewing and loving children, only those things which would create a warm and lovely home? Can her mind only be trained in those lofty philosophical areas which won't take her away from home? Certainly a man wants a wife with some smarts, but what if he doesn't care about philosophy?
I am just not sure what to think about all this. Do we pursue our interests until we know they are conflicting with God's revealed will? How COULD a woman astronaut glorify God with her career, since God has already told us a woman's heart and body should be in her home? If we ladies are supposed to "just" be cooks and house-cleaners and loving mothers, why did God give us brains? I am apparently not the first to think of that, after all, girls in Western civilization were not even allowed to pursue an education until recent history. I am not criticizing God's design, just wondering how to reconcile intelligence with womanhood.
Based on my girls' current "passions", I don't think I am at the crossroads yet. Their passions mostly include cooking, sewing, pretending, making music, Legos, roller skating, and Swagbucks. :D