Literacy has a key role in today’s world where different countries have exceled in the field of education, research and discovery. The countries that have been able to value literacy and made efforts to promulgate it universally have been able to make huge strides in almost all the fields of life. In fact, they are the countries that lead the world, not only in education and research but also in politics and economy. They are the true leaders of the world. However, the countries that have not been able to do so are suffering because of backwardness and underdevelopment.
Afghanistan is one of the countries where illiteracy has remained a dominant problem for many decades. And this problem is generating and invigorating many other problems as well. There are many problems that can be solved with little effort and consideration; however, because of ignorance they have become unsolvable. When the people of a country are not able to understand what they want and what they don’t, it is really difficult to solve their problems. In most of the remote areas of our country there are still many people who consider getting education as a crime. On the other hand, there are the residents of the cities who are convinced that education is inferior to wealth as they witness the failures of the educated men and the success of the ignorant rich people. In this way the value of education is getting lower and the higher values of life are facing great loss.
The main reason of this scenario is our social setup, wherein, education is considered useless and the ways to success and prosperity are on the opposite direction to that of education. In fact, our people have not yet learnt how to live like the developed and free countries of the world. Therefore, they as a nation are not able to choose a better life style and social practices for themselves. As a matter of fact, such a quality can only be attained when they know the true meaning of free thinking and true knowledge. They, without a tinge of doubt, do not know what their real requirements or demands are and what factors can lead them to success. There have been many occasions when they have neglected the welcomes of modernity and development. Whenever, there have been efforts even from the government to pursue modern education and better social and political decisions, they have tried to oppose them and push the country towards conservatism.
Because of the prevailing ignorance most of the people in the country cannot even think about a prosperous society, wherein all the citizens have their due rights. They even do not know that there are certain countries in the world that have most of the facilities of life and they have developed so much that now they have reached to skies to discover them. However, the situation in our country is so that if a clergy announces that man is mortal and he can never reach to the skies and the claims of the developed countries of the world are nothing than white lies, they will definitely believe him with respect and complete obedience.
Our people are alien to the industrial and scientific developments and on most of the cases they treat them with hypocrisy. There are many among us who basically take advantage of the scientific inventions and discoveries almost on daily basis but never hesitate to declare them incorrect and false. If they had the potential they would definitely take our society back to the Dark Ages.
Unfortunately, there are many so-called intellectuals in our society as well who spend their time and energy in favoring the conservative and fundamentalist ideas and strive to prove them right.
Because of the issues and people mentioned above our society has become confused. One of the most dominating characters of our society is that it has made the people conservative and they have started praising their past more than their present. They have started hating each other instead of disseminating the golden feelings of love and brotherhood. As noted by Maya Angelou, “We allow our ignorance to prevail upon us and make us think we can survive alone, alone in patches, alone in groups, alone in races, even alone in genders”. However, they need to understand that they have to be vigilant and understand that they are being fooled. Their thoughts are being confined and their emotions are being betrayed. They are being utilized in the name of religion and history. Now, they have to realize that their responsibilities are to declare clearly that they are no more ready to be fooled and to be utilized by others. Their rights are to announce their hatred for ignorance, poverty, conservative ideas, slavish thinking and growing hypocrisy. They need to fight against the prevailing injustice and all the efforts that try to keep them away from education and knowledge. They should say no to the darkness and try to follow the light as it is the only way that they can live their life with prosperity and dignity.