Sri Lanka still maintains a system of education based on rote learning and memorisation. It is unavoidable that the child becomes devoid of intellect when he is detached from universal exploration and questioning, and made to learn everything by memorisation from Grade 1 – Pic by Shehan Gunasekara
It can be said that Sri Lanka has already fallen to the bottom of the deepest abyss possible. It cannot be considered a result of being pushed into the abyss by an outside force, but a situation created voluntarily, by the people of the country themselves, including the leaders and intellectuals.
Sri Lanka is a stupid nation that still maintains a system of education based on rote learning and memorisation. It is unavoidable that the child becomes an incompetent mutt devoid of intellect when he is detached from universal exploration and questioning, and made to learn everything by memorisation from Grade 1 itself. Now it is rote learning, memorisation of information based on repetition, being pursued up to the level of university.
Strangely, it was by lowering the marks required for an ordinary pass in the GCE Ordinary Level Examination that the failure rate in mathematics at national level has been overcome. So much so, in some years the required score of marks for an ordinary pass in mathematics has been reduced to 14.
A human baby possesses a high level of cognitive ability from an early age. Even a one-week-old baby can distinguish the difference between the scent of his mother’s milk and that of another woman who is not his mother. When children are distanced from group activities, exploration and questioning and made to learn everything by heart, they will invariably end up in being incompetent and gullible, lacking intellect and incapable of rational thinking. Now this situation (gullibility) has become a huge cancer overwhelming the whole nation.
Sri Lanka is ranked 137th with 79 points in the World IQ Index for the year 2020 that reflects the IQ level of different nations. Singapore is ranked number one with 108 points while the State of Guinea-Bissau in West Africa is ranked 184th with 59 points. The extent of decline of intellectual standard of Sri Lanka over the past four decades is evident from this.
One can imagine the extent of destruction caused to Sri Lanka in terms of intellectual development, by the education authorities and the rulers by sustaining a stupid and outdated education system based on rote learning and memorisation. Both intellectuals and journalists are also equally responsible for this situation.
There is hardly any fruitful dialogue in the country about the prevailing education system based on rote learning and memorisation. This system which is stupid and destructive has not come in for protest by the teachers or even the teachers’ trade unions. The most ridiculous thing is that this stupid system flourishes smoothly in the university system of the country without being met with strong opposition.
Loss of reasoning power
If there is a special fun that a society which has lost its reasoning power could enjoy, Sri Lanka can be considered as one that does it to the optimum. Sri Lanka’s economy has been and is in a deep crisis. Furthermore, the debt crisis of the country has been and is in is a situation which might push the country into bankruptcy soon. Apart from all that, the coronavirus pandemic in the country has now reached a level which is completely out of control and in disarray.
Sri Lanka remains sunk to the neck in the quagmire of the crisis; yet the ruling party, the Opposition, the intelligentsia and society in general do not seem to have any idea whatsoever about the seriousness of it. There doesn’t seem to be a constructive dialogue about this crucial issue anywhere. The appalling silence of the intellectuals of the country is pathetic and inexcusable.
The behaviour of the media is also ridiculous. It has failed to initiate a constructive dialogue on the disaster facing the country and on what should be done to overcome it or minimise the damage, and serve as an effective platform except for engaged in a competition for socialising mountains of gossips to mark and promote their seal in the industry. The governance of the country, the implementation of the law and justice and several other things are happening in a way that protects and reinforces the entrenched idiocy of the country.
Sri Lanka, being a country which has utilised the BCG vaccine at an optimum level to control tuberculosis, it is most likely that the mortality rate of corona pandemic may not incur a significant increase despite there being a rapid spread of the number of corona infected cases at the moment. The potential of immunity created by the BCG vaccine seems to have improved the capacity to resist the impact of the COVID-19 virus.
Research studies have revealed that the mortality rate of coronavirus in countries which have used BCG vaccine is much lower than in countries where the BCG vaccine has not been used. There are 26 countries that have not used the BCG vaccine at all and it is those countries, including the United States, which has shown the highest death rate caused by coronavirus.
For example, the mortality rate of corona-infected cases in Portugal is much lower than that of Spain despite them being two adjacent countries. The death toll in Spain is 35,369. The death toll in Portugal is 2,438.The difference can be attributed to the fact that Spain is a country that has not used the BCG vaccine while Portugal has used it. Sri Lanka has been using the BCG vaccine optimally since 1949, and 95% of Sri Lanka’s population has received this vaccine.