Education & literacy are the holy grail. Tony Blair said that for him there were 3 issues, education, education, education.
But is it? People have survived for millennia with the minimum of education. It was never in the interests of those who control society & the country to have an educated population & the same holds true today. Nevertheless, people do survive & always have (as far human existence has any meaning) without much education.
In modern society, it is dog eats dog. The most educated are often not the most successful. Tertiary education has been extended simply to keep young people off the streets. As has been well chronicled many modern subjects are nonsensical. Students sitting down & writing essays about soap operas…
It is all to do with the much talked about (these days) issue of happiness or not. Many who earn a lot of money are in fact illiterate or semi literate. Probably they are happy. It might be a case of ignorance is bliss. It might be that in fact they are not happy at all.
The Buddha said to be born is to suffer. He might have meant the process of birth. He might have meant the process of being alive. Life is suffering. The pain of life can be mitigated by material goods. Possibly it can be mitigated by education.
It might be (for example) that reading books is an overvalued occupation. It might be that altruism is impossible. It might be that love doesn’t exist. God might exist; he might not. Time & space are man made constructions. Society, as it is called, is man made. Knowing about injustices in the World renders happiness impossible
Education might help bring about happiness. It might imprison us by making us conform more closely to society’s norms. It might free us from ignorance. Education, by feeding us false values & wrong information might make us prisoners.
In prisons, there is a high rate of illiteracy, apparently. But there are still highly educated people inside.
My opinion is that the more information & education a person has the better. It might not make a person happy. But it renders a person nearer to enlightenment.