Thoughts by Robert Lee Fulghum and other great thinkersMany Americans have a talent for statements, humorous and otherwise. Will Rogers and Mark Twain come quickly to mind, and there are many others. One that impresses me and still alive is Robert Lee Fulghum. One of his quips that I recall is both humorous and philosophical: “All I really need to know, I learned in Kindergarten.”
By: Bernie Hughes, Superior Telegram
Many Americans have a talent for statements, humorous and otherwise. Will Rogers and Mark Twain come quickly to mind, and there are many others.
One that impresses me and still alive is Robert Lee Fulghum. One of his quips that I recall is both humorous and philosophical: “All I really need to know, I learned in Kindergarten.”
Kindergarten wasn’t available for me, but I learned a lot in the first grade and it wasn’t all from the teacher. That is why home schooling makes me wonder, because I believe that we learn a good deal from our associates. We learn from what they tell us, what they ask us and necessitate our thought, organization and presentation, what pleases them, what displeases them and how they do what they do — etc., etc.
The statement from Fulghum that I want to develop follows:
Imagination is stronger than knowledge, myth is more potent than history, dreams are more powerful than facts, hope triumphs over experience, laughter is the cure for grief and hope is stronger than death.
Let’s look at that:
Imagination is thought about what could and should be. We’ve heard a lot lately about Steve Jobs and his development of the iPad. Better ways to do things come along every so often, but they had to begin in an imaginative mind.
Albert Einstein wrote: “Your imagination is your preview of coming attractions.” He also wrote: “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” And, so, we should be very careful about putting off ideas expressed; they could lead to another great invention.
What about myth and history. Throughout history some belief has been expressed by so many, so many times that it becomes believed. Today, I would classify that circumstance is what kept global warming from being widely accepted for so long. I remember in my youth the talk of haunted houses, and the seriousness of some folks’ beliefs. We hear the phrase that we only use 10 percent of our brain. We hear of people who make their living giving psychic sessions. A more reasonable demonstration for me is the great love for fiction that is present today —. very, very important.
As are dreams when compared to facts. Dreams have been interpreted as successions of images, ideas, emotions and sensations that are in the mind during sleep. Sigmund Freud said that dreams were a manifestation of our deepest desires and anxieties. There are dream interpreters, but I like the Langston Hughes poem best:
Hold fast to dreams
For if they die
Life is a broken wing bird
That cannot fly
Hold fast to dreams
For if they go
Life is a barren field
Covered with snow
And let’s not forget about how hope can overcome: Simply put, hope promotes a belief in a positive outcome. At the darkest moments in our lives, we hang on to that. Martin Luther King Jr. made a couple statements that say it all: “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.” And “Only in the darkness can you see the stars.”
OK, I don’t know if laughter is the cure for grief, but it certainly is a mood changer and every now and then we need that. I’ve said this before; I get my laughter every morning at a 6 a.m. coffee group.
And finally, hope really is stronger than death. This explains the reason for so many different religions all over our world; God makes a promise, faith believes it, hope anticipates it, and patience quietly awaits it.
Bernie Hughes, Ed.D, is a retired educator who resides in Superior. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org