All questions, confusing as they may seem, when examined, dissolve into air.
Knowledge comes through sensory investigation; intelligence is the patterns built upon these senses. All you know begins as stimulation, information -- you observe it effortlessly. Then thinking juxtaposes, and synthesizes predictions and patterns from this raw data, placing thoughts into coherent systems and schemes. This process takes effort, burns calories -- for it induces the physical re-wiring of the mind such that where before there was nothing, now there are pathways, relations, and sequences, all free to fire.
Hence from the physical sensation you come to know objects of the mind, be they beliefs, opinions, or principles.
This twofold process constitutes education. Sensation and construction. You observe, and then you build.
You might see how absent the scene is any sort of question.
What is there to question?
(If that isn't the question, I don't know what is...)
Sense and build. Seek not to question, for nobody ever learned by asking a question.
Learning occurs when the questioning finally ends.
Further, the primary goal of education is not to inspire questions, or to teach which questions should be asked or how often. Questions come automatically, naturally and in no short supply to a curious, supple mind.
Rather, education must teach the pupil to remove himself from his questioning phase as fast as possible, so as not to become lost in the questioning and kept from an answer.
Towards this end, we must outline the nature of our questions, and understand what they represent.
Let's begin with how, what, when, where, and who. I'll lump them all together.
These are desires to seek information, and sensation. You’ll have no trouble learning if you stick to asking these, for they address the effortless process of sensory input.
Ask these questions to get to the facts. Can't go wrong with those.
But “why”… and “how”… here we have some more complexity, and trouble. For they do not seek to procure mere sensory information. Rather they go towards those processes of the mind that organize and arrange those raw sensations into secondary patterns and opinions.
"How" implies achievement, and here we bring in all manner of problems. For desire tends to obfuscate education.
Remember you assume a goal and a value system when you ask this question. You desire something. It is critical you understand exactly what you desire, for the more clarity you have here the simpler the answer will become.
“How do I become a better student in school?”
Now you must work to deconstruct the question. What means “better” to you? Higher grades? More learning? More discipline?
“How can I have a nicer personality?”
What is “nice”? Can you achieve “nice”? Can you act “nice”? You can do things, say things, feel things. But “nice”?
See how easy it can be to hide behind this question of "how" -- hide behind vague words and confused terms, and mix up your emotional desires with your assessment of fact.
Break down the terms until they become ones you understand.
Figure out exactly what you want. Don’t settle for umbrella terms you do not understand. Get yourself into tangibles, because only upon tangibles can you act.
And finally “why,” which is perhaps the most perplexing question of them all, and one we sense to be most important of the lot.
Of all the questions, here I find it prudent to say the least in words, though the most in meaning.
Understand that there is no “why.” Why seeks cause, which is subjective construction. The answer to “why” is a matter of your choosing. If you desire causal theory, choose away to your hearts content. But do not mistake your machinations for educations.
Don’t allow yourself to become consumed by such an answer. Stay grounded in what is.