Are illiteracy and ignorance different?

There is a very thin line between illiteracy and ignorance. If asked to choose between the two, a stifling dilemma would be presented; this could be likened to a chicken and egg situation. Can one be illiterate and ignorant? As you mull on your answer, let’s make a brief reference to the greatest book that has ever been written in the history of mankind – the Bible.

There is a very thin line between illiteracy and ignorance. If asked to choose between the two, a stifling dilemma would be presented; this could be likened to a chicken and egg situation. Can one be illiterate and ignorant?

As you mull on your answer, let’s make a brief reference to the greatest book that has ever been written in the history of mankind – the Bible. It poignantly states that, ‘God’s people perish for lack of knowledge.’
 
Lacking knowledge is a circumlocution of ignorance. Apparently, ignorance does not only refer to the illiterate people who have not been to school. It engulfs those who have been to school but do not know!

There are many people who are educated but are blatantly ignorant. In that light, there is only a negligible difference between them and those who have never seen the inside of a classroom.

Using the US dollar anecdote from my home village, I can explain my point further. One day, tourists in an executive Land Cruiser vehicle passed through our village heading to some resort centre. Their luggage was wrapped and tied on the roof of the car.

Accidentally, a brief case unnoticeably fell by the roadside as the car sped off.

A middle aged man, a resident of the village, picked the case and took it home. He crushed it open with a stone and took out the $10,000 bills and pinned them to his mud house using needle- like thorns. His house was well decorated in green.
 
Little did the villager know that the briefcase had a tracking electronic device.
When the tourists reached their destination and discovered that the case with money was missing, they tracked it electronically and traced it to the man’s house.

The innocent looking man was shocked to receive prominent visitors at his house on a Sunday evening. They told him that they were the owners of the ‘decorations’ on the wall and they were in need of them. In short, they recovered all their money.

To avoid bias, I don’t want to mention the education qualification of this man but, he had been to school, and properly learned for that matter. He simply lacked exposure to the outside world and that was why he had no idea of what the US currency looked like.

If I can speak like the devil’s advocate, the man had gotten a cheap ride out of his poverty but he threw it all away because of his ignorance.

What is my point? All people should strive to keep themselves knowledgeable with several affairs in life. Obtaining a qualification is not enough.

Taking time to read current affairs, fiction and even science keeps you afloat and relevant in the modern world.
Simply having an idea of what goes on outside your line of interest will enlighten your world.

One man once said that the surest way to be wealthy is to invest in knowledge so that you can know the next big thing.

znyamosi@yahoo.com

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