The Monroe – Gaga effect.

Among my other activities, I am an active tennis teacher. As a tennis teacher, I have quite many kids in my facebook. Whenever I take a look at my news feed or when I happen to take a look at someone’s “about” page I see what one would expect to see when kids and teenagers express themselves: Boys talk about football, girls, music and 9gag and girls talk about boys, other girls, music and relationships.

What one will not see is any quote from anyone intellectually worthy man or woman. No Plato, no Kant, no Mill, or anyone with a great work in arts or sciences. Youngsters are not dumb; if they had read any of these they would definitely appreciate many things and quote them (as they already do with singers, actors and football players). We pay so much for an educational system that is unable to have the majority of our children to read an important philosophical – or other – book till they graduate (and I doubt how many do read one even afterwards). How useless school is, is another point though and not currently to be further analyzed.

Interestingly, what is common for everyone to have at some time posted in their profile are two quotes, one from Merylin Monroe, and the second from Lady Gaga:


“If you can’t love me at my worst, then you don’t deserve me at my best”

Gaga (usually all or some of the following):

“Well, that’s your opinion, isn’t it? And I’m not about to waste my time trying to change it.”

“Don’t you ever let a soul in the world tell you that you can’t be exactly who you are.”

“I am beautiful in my own way, ‘Cause God makes no mistakes. I’m on the right track, baby, I was born this way.”

Most children will never have the opportunity to be parts of real schools and work hard to develop themselves, thus acquiring true inner value(s). Worst part is that because they already spend a huge amount of time and energy in common schools, they are told – and they believe – that this is all there is to it. This way, they have even less chance to really find a school, as they are deceived. What are and where true schools are is – again – not the subject of this article. In brief, a school may only exist when the leader is a truly inspired, educated, skilled individual and represents a great tradition. What the school teaches is not of importance: It can be anything from piano to aikido and philosophy or mathematics.

So, what does a teenager really says to him/herself and everyone, left uneducated and confused? Let’s see the thread of thought…

– “You have to tolerate everything from me, not because this is the right thing to do as I am a weak creature learning things, but because I AM already important!”

– “Am I unique and therefore, important?”

– “Of course! Gaga says I am!”

Unfortunately, this a priori-importance-of-our-“distinguished”-personality attitude (the Monroe-Gaga effect), is something that actually characterizes children’s behaviour and their worldview today, making it so much harder for them to evolve and actually reach a point when they will indeed be unique and valuable – to themselves most importantly.

Socrates said “ I know one, that I know nothing”. People who actually know nothing, think they know much. It is people who do know unimaginably many things that truly appreciate the unimportance of their knowledge and their existence. My generation hoped that with so much information freely and unrestrictedly available through the internet, next generations of children would be so well educated. Till now, this hasn’t been the case.


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