Tuesday, March 25, 2008

What is Knowledge?

I just read a wonderful speech that Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam (ex-President of India) gave at Wharton India Economic Forum a couple of days ago. At WIEF, he asked a very simple question - what is Knowledge?

I struggled for few mins. to answer this question. However, he gave a very simple yet effective definition of knowledge. According to him,

Knowledge = creativity + righteousness + courage + indomitable spirit

And he defines each component like this:


“Learning gives creativity
Creativity leads to thinking
Thinking provides knowledge
Knowledge makes you great”


"Where there is righteousness in the heart
There is beauty in the character.
When there is beauty in the character,
There is harmony in the home.
When there is harmony in the home.
There is an order in the nation.
When there is order in the nation,
There is peace in the world."


"Courage to think different,
Courage to invent,
Courage to travel into an unexplored path,
Courage to discover the impossible,
Courage to combat the problems
And Succeed, Are the unique qualities of the youth.
As a youth of my nation, I will work and work with courage to achieve success in all the missions."

Indomitable Spirit

Full of courage, driving force  and a spirit of victory

He finished his speech with another wonderful short poem:

What is mission in life?

"I am great in thinking and in action.
I firmly believe that I can do any mission.
I will dream to live even in Mars.
It doesn’t matter who I am,
I will work, work and work,
All the forces of the universe will also assist me,
I will achieve what I dream."

To read the full text of his speech, please click here. I will try to get access to the video of this speech also.

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