THE TOWN OF EDUCATION | Carla Parola Official website THE TOWN OF EDUCATION – Carla Parola Official website
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Mary had had many experiences in her Life, she had lived through many particular situations, and faced many different ways of being, but she hadn’t studied very much, in fact she hadn’t studied at all.
Fairy Pauline thought that it was time to stop in a town and allow Mary to go to school with other children.
Mary was no longer a little child, she had become a magnificent young girl, and so Fairy Pauline chose a suitable school for her.
She went round and around and naturally chose the Town of Education.
Everyone in this town worked hard learning about culture and knowledge, and it seemed that this was the only goal in their lives.
From the youngest to the oldest, their purpose in Life was to study and acquire knowledge.
Up to now Mary had lived with emotions, she had learnt many things to help her to live well, but now she had to be open to learning about things that she thought were quite useless.
Fairy Pauline sensed this diffidence in Mary towards education, and so one morning, as soon as she was awake, instead of accompanying her to school, she took her to the woods just outside the town.
At long last thought Mary, a day in the open air, and not stuck inside listening to talks about what she considered useless things.
She was very surprised to find that they were not alone in the woods, there were a great many students wandering around, and paying attention to the little footpaths that crisscrossed the woods.
Beside the students there were expert teachers who replied to the dozens of questions coming from the youngsters.
Mary listened carefully and was astounded by the interest they all had for things that she never even thought about: for her the only important thing was to “feel” the woods, look at the colours, hear the sounds and enjoy the wonderful atmosphere all this created.
These other students instead wanted to know the names of the plants, how long they took to grow, which animals lived in the woods, even how old could the tallest trees be.
All this seemed strange to Mary: even knowing all the answers wouldn’t have improved the magical atmosphere that you breathed here.
She stood a little way away from the others to listen, but gradually as the teachers answered the student’s questions, she became more interested.
She was sorry that she didn’t have any questions, but was not irritated by the questions coming from the others, and she began to appreciate this way of getting to know the woods.
Fairy Pauline observed Mary attentively, and when she saw her participate in the other student’s curiosity, she realised that something in Mary had changed.
Going home, Mary began to ask the Fairy many questions to which the Fairy answered easily: she knew absolutely everything!
That evening before going to sleep, going over the lovely day, Fairy Pauline wanted to explain to Mary the difference between knowing and understanding.
“ You see Mary, you can ask many questions, wanting to know why, why, why, but this really doesn’t lead you to live better. If you ask questions just to know, you will always want to know more, or to satisfy your curiosity, or to amaze others when you show off your culture.
The result will be very different if your questions are to understand the mechanism of Life, how and what human beings think, the journey that humanity has made, how situations are connected, one with the other to allow a perfect harmony in the cosmos.
You must not change: understanding is more important to you, feeling more than knowing, but remember that knowing is also important because it enriches your understanding, it makes you more aware”
What a marvellous lesson had Fairy Pauline given to Mary, who serenely went to sleep.


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