Icon Without Substance

And then another: More than a week ago

In one of my newly most visited blogs, the author posted The role of Academics and the Mind. It says,

“Academics can be good or bad. Some people get more obscure by degrees! Scholarship can bring dimness, just as it can bring light and clarity.”

This blog’s author reminded me of my teacher’s warning and Stephen’s message in my audio book. I agree.

In my own words, academics is neither good nor bad. It’s neutral. It’s values depend on us. And if we choose to concentrate on the purely academic side without ever balancing the other, more important areas of life—the profound understanding of goodness, truth, and justice—then we are off track. We become icons without substance. We become useless. We lost meaning.

The blog’s author is right,

academics ‘gone bad’ can be dry, boring, disconnected from real life . . .

If academics develop our technical knowledge, yet destroy our paradigm, our character and humility, our relationships . . . then what good does it do?

Academics is for the mind. It “can be good.” Yet we need to balance it with the matters of the heart, and with spirituality. Life is an indivisible whole. We cannot simply concentrate on one area while neglecting the others. We need balance.

Icons point us to something else . . .

Titles, diplomas, certificate, trophies, medals are only icons . . . even pictures and words, they are not the real things, they simply point us to what is real. Leadership title is useless if a person is ignorant even to the most fundamentals of leadership. MBA and PhD degrees become useless if they don’t point us to profound and useful knowledge and principles that will bring betterment to mankind. It even becomes more useless if because of these titles, the person holding it becomes too arrogant that they are unconsciously destroying their relationship with other people.

Icons point us not to itself but to something of more importance, to something significant, to something that is real. If icons are left alone, existing without pointing to the real thing, then they defeat the very purpose of their existence.

2 thoughts on “Icon Without Substance

  1. I agree with you. I know people with masters, abroad stayings, etc. but they overall culture/education is really poor. I prefer great people instead of great curriculum.

    1. Hello nuresma, It’s a sad fact. I’m glad I still know a few who are not like icons without substance.

      And like you, I prefer great people than great curriculum. 🙂

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