Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Left to swim in cold waters

Is it better to be taught something or to learn it the natural way ?

During my school days I was always a little ahead in knowing about the things that were new in and around us ... ( blatant self promotion ) .. but when it came to learning about it and then mastering it ... I would be the last one to do it ! ( sceptic and questioning still ! )

I learnt cycling when I was 14. ( 4 years late than an average kid ) .. I learnt swimming when I was 18 ( very late ) .. but by then I had put my fingers in almost everything ... It was just the initial fit of excitement.. it would never last long ... As a kid I learnt dancing for more than 4 years ( Bharatnatyam, a traditional dance of south India ) .. I was trained in carnatic music for almost 8 months .. was trained in table tennis for almost 6 months , personally trained in guitar for 8 months, was professionally taught chess and painting, I tried Japanese for 3 months ( yeah i got a certificate for that ) and French for a month . And if I were to list the things I tried myself ( and soon gave up ) ... that would be more than lengthy ...

I always believed that learning should not be imposed .. it should come naturally .. let me underline this fact by citing an example that I thought of when i was travelling today morning .. Given a chance to train two dogs to swim ... which one do you think would be a better swimmer in a month ? One trained by a human in a controlled environment or one who is thrown into a pond and left to itself ? Now lets extrapolate this to humans .. who do you think would be a better swimmer in a month ? One trained in a warm swimming pool ? or a fisherman kid ... who has the urge to learn swimming for his survival ..and has the cold ocean as his testing bed ?

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"Florentino is so in love with Fermina that he eats gardenias and drinks cologne so that he can know her taste. He becomes drunk on the cologne, and his mother finds him the next morning, in a puddle of his vomit, in a cove of the bay where drowning victims are known to wash ashore" - Love in the time of Cholera