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From Intellect to Intuition - Chapter Two - The Purpose of Education
This book seeks to deal with the method whereby the capacity to function in the larger consciousness can be developed, and man can reorganize his Being towards the wider issues. It concerns itself with the technique by which a specialized training and self-culture can be applied by every individual unit who [33] is capable of desiring this larger goal. If that desire can take a clear and rational form in his mind and can be appreciated as a perfectly legitimate objective, capable of successful achievement, he will eagerly grasp at it. If society can provide the means and opportunity for such advancement, many will gladly seek the way. The method proposed is an individual technique which will enable the student, who has profited by the usual academic educational advantages and the experiences of life, to expand his consciousness until he gradually transcends his present limitations and reorients his mind to wider realizations. He will discover the soul as the great Reality, thus gaining direct experience of spiritual things.

Everett Dean Martin defines education for us as a "spiritual revaluation of human life. Its task is to reorient the individual, to enable him to take a richer and more significant view of his experiences, to place him above and not within the system of his beliefs and ideals."
- Martin, Everett Dean, The Meaning of a Liberal Education, Page VIII, Preface.

This definition necessarily opens the door to controversy, for we live, each of us, in a different environment; we have each our special problems and characteristics, based upon our heredity, our physical condition and many other factors. The consequent standard of values will have to be modified for each person, for each generation, country and race. That education is intended to prepare us for "complete living" (as Herbert Spencer [34] says) may be true, but the scope and capacity of each man differs. The lowest and the highest attainable point for men varies infinitely, and a man, moreover, who is equipped to function in one particular sphere might prove ludicrously inadequate in another. Some standard of "complete living" must therefore be worked out if the definition is to be useful. To do this we shall have to ascertain what is the pure type of the rounded out and perfected man, and what is the sum total of his range of contacts. It does not seem possible that we have exhausted the possibilities of man's response apparatus, nor of the environment with which it can put him in touch. What are the limits within which man can function? If there are states of awareness, ranging all the way from that of the Hottentot up to that of our intelligentsia and on to the geniuses and leaders in all fields of human expression, what constitutes the difference between them? Why are their fields of perception so widely diverse? Racial development, one will reply; glandular stability, or instability, another will say; the possession, or the lack, of adequate educational advantages, differences in environment and in heritage, other groups of thinkers will decide.

But out of the welter of opinion emerges the basic fact of the wide range of the human states of awareness, and the wonder of the realization that humanity has produced such marvels of comprehensive understanding, of purity of expression and of perfected worldwide influence as we see evidenced by [35] the Christ, the Buddha, Plato and many others, whose thoughts and words have set their mark upon the minds of men for thousands of years. What has made them what they are? Are they miracles, emerging from the heart of the Infinite, and, hence, can never find their equal? Are they products of the evolutionary process, and so have become potent through vast experience and unfoldment? Or are they the flower of the human race, who added to their equipment and training a specialized culture which enabled them to enter a spiritual world, which is sealed to the majority, and to function in a dimension of which even our most advanced thinkers know nothing? Have our present educational systems brought humanity, as a whole, to a condition where many thousands are ready for this specialized culture, and, therefore, are we facing a crisis in the educational field which has its roots in a success, which, if carried forward along the same lines, will become a detriment instead of a help, - because man is ready for something new? Some of us believe that this is possible, and that it is time that educators should begin to prepare men for the new and divine experience and for that wonderful experiment which will put them everywhere in possession of themselves - a thing hitherto the choice prerogative of the mystics and knowers of the race. These knowers have testified to a wider world than the one revealed to us by the mechanism of the nerves, and investigated by the chemist, the physicist, the biologist and the anthropologist. They have spoken in no [36] uncertain terms of a realm of contacts and of awareness in which the ordinary senses are useless. They claim to have lived and moved in these subtler realms, and the perseverance displayed in the mystical search for reality, and the similarity of their testimony down the ages lead one to believe in the possibility of that intangible world and of a response apparatus, by means of which it can be contacted. The ranks of these "deluded" mystics and intuitional thinkers number tens of thousands of the best minds of the race. They say to us in the words of Walt Whitman:

"I and my kind do not convince by argument; we convince by our presence."
- Whitman, Walt, Leaves of Grass.

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