The things you know
In the years gone by, our fathers knew little, science and technology was at its crude stage, civilization and globalization was never to be expected to get to the highest level it has now assumed, yet the noble men and women of those days had less trouble or sorrow compared to what now attends to contemporary generations.
This fact agrees with the sayings of the wise man who said, ‘increase in knowledge gives rise to more sorrow'. It took me a lot of time meditating over the wise man's words to see what the wise man saw that prompted his conclusion. According to the wise man, the more of knowledge you acquire the more vulnerable and exposed to danger you become.
I became very curious about this assertion, but current happenings have boosted my quest to unravel this mystery. Now you will understand that the reason why you acted the way you do (good or bad) is because you are either responding (which is positive) or reacting (which is negative) to accumulated and incubated information or knowledge about something in your mind. You will realize for example, that a child will not begin to practice some odious behavior until he/she get to know about them.
Above 50% of the most prevalent social vices in the society today are not in-born, they were learnt. The individual who chose to love and help his neighbor would naturally be un-willing had he not learnt that it is the noblest way to go. The same holds true for the other person that prefers to be notorious. His behavior is very likely traceable to certain knowledge he has acquired.
Time and Space would fail me to highlight all examples of traits emerging as a result of prior knowledge that abound in our society. You will agree with me that majority of the cult boys and girls in our institutions knew little or nothing about cultism before stepping into the school environments. Similarly, some girls ended up living awful life styles in prostitution, drug addiction and the likes simply due to the much influence their earlier knowledge on these things had on them. Advance criminal behaviors emanating from improper education, or influence of bad knowledge which include robbery hooliganism, lesbianism, gay pride, masturbation, cultism, witchcraft, evil societies, hired killing, assassination, suicide bombing and terrorism of all kinds are very common today.
You will hardly think of any of these talk more of doing them if you had no adequate prior knowledge of them. As I meditate on these things I realize that knowledge could be a very powerful tool in the hand of an individual. It can make or mar anything with equal tendencies depending on how it is channeled.
I remembered the story of the first man and woman that ever existed on planet earth, Adam and Eve where the damage was first done. The tree of the knowledge of good and evil was in the midst of the garden and they were prohibited from it. It appears to me that among all the trees in the garden, this particular one was the most potent with dual function, good and evil when put to use. But the key to activate its inherent power or potency lies in the knowledge thereof. As long as the knowledge remains dormant or inactive, the power of good and evil will be harmless to any and everyone.
It became more interesting to me that the problem about this tree wasn't really the good or the evil component of it but the knowledge of them. If only the knowledge had been managed properly they would gain mastery over the good or evil. The all-knowing, all wise-God knew that the best way they could gain control over it was to stay clear of it, and he instructed them of same, but alas they disobeyed. We all know the consequences of their disobedience after then. However that is more of a principle than a scenario. The problem the first man had in the garden was not peculiar to them alone. It has become an intrinsic part of every human race.
Let us attempt to answer a few questions:
Ø What kind of knowledge interests me?
Ø How do I determine the kind of knowledge that is good for me and the one that could be a bad influence?
Ø What step am I ready to take to reject knowledge that is detrimental to my health, peace, love and faith?
Ø How do I guard my heart diligently against unnecessary influx of negative knowledge?
Ø In my quest for truth, how do I differentiate godly and moral information from those that are not?
Ø If I realize that over-time, I have been under the influence of negative knowledge, what steps am I willing to take to disengage myself?
Now if we can seriously and deliberately provide answers to these questions, then we are on our way to a position where we can decipher between good or evil, deception will be reduced to the minimum and peradventure we get exposed to knowledge of any of good or evil, we can be sure to put them under our control. Achieving this will guarantee us of crime- and terror-free society dominated by loving and kind-hearted citizens with moral and godly behavior.
As you reflect on this piece, remember that the problem was not the good or the evil but the knowledge of it so be careful with what you know.
Adams-jr, in Lagos