Around fifteen universities now offer courses for free online through a medium called Coursera. No, no, it’s legit – you can take Stanford, Michigan, Princeton, UPenn, Hopkins and many more university classes for free!
It was while browsing the Duke University website that I learnt about this program because Duke participates in it as well. Read for yourself. There’s no academic credit for taking the course…it’s just for those who like to learn for the sake of learning 🙂
It’s kinda like Ted Talks right: Riveting talks by remarkable people sharing ideas worth spreading. What’s crazy is, once you watch a Ted talk, you’ve got to share what you’ve learnt with someone else! There’s no apparent merit in these talks other than the joy of sharing knowledge.
You think of Wikipedia…which, I think, is one of the greatest innovations of the 21st century! You could spend hours jumping from one article to another, garnering random information on stuff just for the sake of it.
What about the news? Whether it’s CNN, BBC, MSNBC, Al Jazeera, etc…We just read story after story. Sometimes what we read has some bearing on our life…most times, it’s just information that might make for interesting conversation later…
We haven’t talked about YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc, etc, etc…All forums for knowledge acquisition! Even mediums like Audioverse can become no more than another interesting thing to talk about.
And for what? To what end do we gain knowledge? How does all our learning impact our lives? Or the lives of others? We are a knowledge saturated generation: ever learning and never able to come to a knowledge of the truth. Lends credence to the Biblical assertion that knowledge shall be increased at the time of the end doesn’t it.
Perhaps the need for temperance extends to the realm of mental nutrition. Avoid that information that is lacking in nutritional value and indulge in moderation in that which edifies.