“Never let formal education get in the way of your learning.” – Mark Twain.
“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read or write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn”. – Alvin Toffler
Unlearning is the toughest one of the tasks Toffler mentions. With unlearning you’re on your own. There aren’t any unlearning schools, no teachers, never mind unlearning courses at school. You face the tough challenge of not knowing what you need to unlearn or even how to unlearn.
Here’s a proposal for an unlearning syllabus:
- History and philosophy of time
- Plain English versions of Einstein’s relativity theories
- Survey of physics (emphasis on “the arrow of time“)
- Survey of quantum theories (emphasis on particle/wave duality)
- Philosophy of change (source 1)
- History and philosophy of “the self“
- History and philosophy of “belief“
- Philosophy of causality (including concepts like “the butterfly effect“)
- philosophy of logical models (including micro-logic, and counterfactual reasoning)
- Philosophy of truth (with an emphasis on the fragility of truth statements and validation statements)
- Perspectivism and contextualism, incommensurability
- Anthropology of non-Western cultures
- Critical thinking
- Problem solving skills
- Systems thinking (with an acknowledgment of “systems” as a conceptual construction)
- Application of your new insights to older, personal knowledge
- Writing your own (different) take of all of the above
Rethink – learning, and unlearning will follow.