Originally Posted by Heidi Anschultz
Ross, you make a point that there is a higher purpose for college. And that purpose is to be trained to complete a task that helps society function. When you get trained and then fill this job, you help the society function. I guess it's everybody's job to be busy doing something to help the society. My role could range from cleaning up the pollution put off by greedy corporate-run factories, automobile exhaust, etc. to building bridges/constructing dams/laying out plans for buildings, etc. But the question is not am I able to do this, it is why would I want to do this with my life?
What is the point of cleaning up the mess of society? It doesn't help oneself. It only fixes or reduces a problem I didn't create and will only be remade as corporations become greedier.
I just don't see the point. I also am inspired most by nature. A simple life would be great for me. Maybe it isn't for others, but as long as I get my degree and mature from college, I can do what I want after college. My life can go pretty much anywhere.
It seems like you're splitting your options into 'education for responsible citizenship' on the one hand and 'simple life that has little to do with education' on the other. I don't think it's that simple. You're right to ask of the first option, 'What's in it for me?' But there is something in it for you in good education; good education can help you figure out how to live a better life. Old books have a lot of things to teach about happiness and the good life that are very hard to figure out on your own by trial, error, and nature. Take up Aristotle's Ethics, for instance; it starts with the question, 'What will make you happy?' and tries to answer it.