Half Knowledge is Dangerous!

January 21, 2013 14:57
Half Knowledge is Dangerous!

Long long ago Alexander Pope a great English poet wrote a long poem called Dunciad wherein he says

"A little knowledge is dangerous"

He tells us then to drink deep other wise taste not the pierian spring.

But what is wrong with a little knowledge ?is not something better than nothing? Certainly so far most of us whose sole aim is to know and nothing else. But there are numberless people to whom knowledge is not for the sake of knowledge. For them it is a tool to manipulate something, a vehicle by which they can deliver their goods to others. They are religious leaders,
doctors, engineers, lawyers, teachers and such others.

The essence of religion is tolerance while its purpose is to comfort man when he is bewildered and all religions have the same theory to propound though the methods are different. A religious leader, who does not know this much, says that his religion is superior and that whoever does not follow its tenets is a non-believer and that he should therefore be killed. Poor ignorant people who venerate this man accept him blindly and cut the innocent throats of the people of other religions. Even if once upon a time people believed in the dictum of tooth for tooth and eye for eye, we have progressed far and long. And now pardon should be the word for both the non-believers and unbelievers as long as they are harmless.

The doctor and engineer are no better. A doctor who does not know where to apply his scissors and the engineer when to press the button, are equally harmful. One cannot cure the patient; the other cannot run the machine. Again the result is sorrow and suffering. The lawyer who is not properly equipped is also a treat to society. Instead of getting the convict evicted, he will send him to the gallows.

A half learned teacher is also an unwelcome element. Instead of training his wards on proper lines, to become good and responsible citizens of tomorrow, he will make them unruly and disgruntled students of today and incompetent and irresponsible people of tomorrow.

There is yet another danger from the half-learned or the ill-learned man. He thinks too much of his knowledge and becomes swollen headed. In this blind baseless pride, he talks ill of other people and causes unnecessary and unwanted harm. If such a man happens to be a writer or a man of authority the harm that will be done is in calculable. Characters will be assassinated reputations will be ruined and some times conflicts and clashes may result.

This does not mean that we all should taste not the prierian spring and remain ignorant.

Only thing we must remember is that knowledge, however small or big it may be, should make us wise. In fact, in these days of increased knowledge, no man can attain perfection even in one branch of learning.

(AW:Samrat Biswas)

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