Monday, January 3, 2011

Progress

The fatal metaphor of progress, which means leaving things behind us, has utterly obscured the real idea of growth, which means leaving things inside us. C.S. Lewis

This is one of my favorite quotes from Lewis, and one that I try to remember when the new year rolls around every January. Sometimes, in our frenzy to discard the old and put on the new, we also destroy the lessons we have learned and the foundation we really needed to grow. Teachers, in particular, need to be cautious that they don't foster this razing of values and concepts, but rather explain and add, allowing students to use what they know to evaluate the new material. That's not to say some things shouldn't be tossed away, but devastation seldom produces more arable soil. I've written it in another way:

You don't get anywhere if you keep starting over.

7 comments:

oldegg said...

You are so right of course. A thousand years ago when History was taught in schools and we poor kids had to remember dates and kings and all that stuff we were never given an insight on the values of life and the cost of every "improvement," event or discovery.

Mind you in saying this I am blaming others and not myself for embracing change, progress or whatever.

lightverse said...

Nicely put, Lilibeth. It's so true - we need to strike that oft-illusive balance of old and new.

jaerose said...

I love that quote Lilibeth - I shall make a note..I like the idea of building on things already inside..that human-hamster wheel also made me chuckle. Life sometimes feels like that! Happy new year..Jae :)

aftergrace said...

True, so true.

Mary said...

I love the quote. Your piece is very thoughtful, and correct. It can be found in so many aspects of our society. I think your one-liner and picture really capture it well. Kudos.

Susannah said...

"You don't get anywhere if you keep starting over." - Oh I really love that and it is so true, I shall remember that. Thank you for the reminder. :-)

I'd like to wish you a very happy new year, may it bring you much joy.

gs batty said...

Nice, very thoughtful and smart.
build a good foundation and make it grow