I've always believed in education and in good teaching that is guided by truth. But after a lifetime of educational pursuit, I now ask, what is true education and who decides on what is good teaching? This search has taken me through the spiritual, the delusional, social, physical, the psychological, the philosophical -- and back again. And I have made the most important educational discovery of my career, the most important discovery of my whole life: It is only through kindness that any true lesson can be taught and that I'm only here to help my students find that kindness. They are all my education, they are all my good teaching, they are my truth, they are my kindness.
If we insist that public life be reserved for those whose personal history is pristine, we are not going to get paragons of virtue running our affairs. We will get the very rich, who contract out the messy things in life the very dull, who have nothing to hide and nothing to show and the very devious, expert at covering their tracks and ambitious enough to risk their discovery.
If we never experience the chill of a dark winter, it is very unlikely that we will ever cherish the warmth of a bright summer’s day. Nothing stimulates our appetite for the simple joys of life more than the starvation caused by sadness or desperation.
In the end the aggressors always destroy themselves, making way for others who know how to cooperate and get along. Life is much less a competitive struggle for survival than a triumph of cooperation and creativity.