Posts tagged Albert Einstein

Sobering News from my taxi driver

Another day like yesterday but not as bad, I’m ready to go home and just “vedge” out with a DVD after eating wild rice, vegetable soup.  Not as cold in Astana today which makes everyone seem friendlier.  My faithful taxi driver Yaheya took me to work today and he never fails to bring up world news.  This morning he talked about the tragedy in Moscow where there were 35 dead and about 180 wounded after an explosion in the airport.  I think I got the numbers right. This conversation with Yaheya was all in Russian and sobering for my early morning going to work thoughts.  I pity the Russian families who are dealing with this latest sad tragedy.

Here are some other thoughts that are a bit more uplifting, if they are true:

Apparently Albert Einstein once said if he had one hour to save the world, he would spend 55 minutes defining the problem and only five minutes finding the solution.  I do believe we need a solution to this terrorism that stalks many airports and also our schools and universities.  Our world has been turned upside down by hate-crazed people who want to plague others with terrorist tactics.  I wonder how Einstein would have solved this problem of terrorism?

Did Napolean really say this about what he does about problems?  “My genius is that with a quick glance, I cover all the difficulties of a situation, but at the same time all resources to overcome these difficulties and that is the reason why I have superiority over others.”  I think this little man was an egoist, as my students like to write.  I’d say ego-maniac would be more descriptive of Napolean.

“Reading a book means gaining an author’s lifetime experience.” I would agree with that and I have also heard it said that usually a person who writes has only two books to write. One on his particular topic and another on himself (autobiography) when he becomes famous with his first topic.  All other books that follow are the same theme and formula.  I suppose there are those authors that try different genres but that is what I read somewhere.

I like the following quote of what Prophet Mohammed said:

“If you are concerned about next year, plant rice.

If you care about 10 years, plant a tree,

If you worry about centuries, raise educated children.”

I’m glad I have my PDP students, they are working hard on their final project.  I worked out a tentative schedule for the rest of the time we have together this year.  I will miss these dear students but I feel that I am planting a harvest of good seed with these very active teachers who will sow more seeds with their pupils.

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Central Asian Thoughts on Education

Education is so important in order to move ahead in the world and Kazakhstan has an ambitious goal to achieve a status in 20 years where they would be ranked among the top 50 developed nations.  I have seen the Kazakhs make strides from what this country inherited nearly 20 years ago when the former Soviet Union collapsed.  Many people are working on this new university in Astana and I marvel at the speed with which it is being put together.  Many hours of hard labor are coming up, but the groundwork has been laid, we are pressing ahead.  Space and time, space and time, space and time, a new dimension is being envisioned. I believe the Kazakhs will succeed because they have both the space to build and have been around for a long time.

I saw an expression the other day that I think is appropriate about space and time:  The British think that 100 miles is a long distance, Americans think a 100 years is a long time ago.”

Ropo Oguntimehin “Education is a companion which no future can depress, no crime can destroy, no enemy can alienate it and nepotism can enslave.”

“Good teachers teach, but the best ones inspire.”

“Nothing is impossible for a willing heart.”

Thomas Carlyle “Permanence, perseverance and persistence in spite of all obstacles, discouragement, and impossibilities: It is this, that in all things distinguishes the strong soul from the weak.”

“Education costs much, the lack of education costs much more.”

Socrates: “Who wants, searches for the reasons, who wants, searches for ways.”

Albert Einstein: “Only a life for others is a life worthwhile.”

“Your actions speak so loud that I can’t hear what you are saying.”

Albert Schweitzer: “Example is not the main thing in influencing others, it is the only thing.”

“If you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got.”

“Once upon a time there lived a man who was deeply respected and incredibly rich, but really unhappy.  And one day he decided to turn for help to Solomon, who was fairly considered one of the wisest men on Earth.

When the man came, he found Solomon looking at fish in the pond, and then he complained, “Oh Solomon, I am in confusion, every new day of my life is like the previous one, I cannot distinguish dawn from sunset and I do not feel happy anymore.”

Solomon fell to thinking for a while and answered then, “A great many people dream to be in your position, live in such a gorgeous house and own all the riches you have.  I wonder, what dream do you have?”

A bit hesitating, the man answered: “In the beginning, I dreamt about my releasing out of slavery.  After I had been released, I wanted my trade to be of great receipts.  But now, it seems to me, there is already nothing to dream about.”

“A man who has not a dream can be compared with the fish, splashing in this pond” Solomon said, “Fish also cannot distinguish what day it is and if it is sunset or dawn.  All the days of fish existence are the same and they do not know what happiness is.”

After these words, he added: “But unlike fish, you locked yourself in your “pond” by your own will. If there is not any good purpose in your life, you will roam your house and when the time to die comes, you will realize that you idled away all your life.  And on the opposite, if you have a certain goal, your life will fill with excitement and fervour…”

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