On Self-Education


“Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds” – Bob Marely

A Hatred Of School

I, like many kids, always hated school. Now I am not talking about a petty childish hatred of school, or the “I hate being cooped up all day and want to go out and play” kind of hatred of school. Nor am I referring to a hatred of 1980s and 1990s school social culture—cliques, status, sports, bullying, hierarchy, etc—which was often criticized in my day in the wake of school shootings. No, what I am talking about is a serious and legitimate hatred of the structured, regimented, formal, and forced “learning” of school.

I absolutely hated the structured learning and grading of public school and formal education. In school, I generally despised being told what to study, what to read, what to write, what projects to complete, what assignments were due, as well as the assigning of pointless busywork and homework, then, to top it all off, being arbitrarily “graded” by some depressed divorced wino with a liberal arts degree and a chip on her shoulder.

Now I could understand and appreciate that a certain point of these tasks was to teach responsibility, and to prepare students for the deadlines and pressures of the workplace and “real world”, but that didn’t mean I had to like it. It also wasn’t that I didn’t enjoy or appreciate learning and knowledge, I was always an avid reader growing up, and so I much preferred to read the fiction and non-fiction books of my own choosing, at my own leisure, while independently studying subjects of interest on my own time.

As such, I pretty much skated through school and college with minimal effort and an apathetic attitude. I rarely applied myself academically, and was generally an academic slacker, with the exception of select projects or classes that happened to hold my interest. Luckily, I was always intelligent enough to pull in decent grades with practically little effort on my part, so I made the rational decision early on in high school and college not to expend a lot of time or energy academically, when just “half-assing” it would suffice with decent results. The only reason I even stuck it out in college, despite contemplating quitting after every semester, was the military—but that’s another story altogether.

Now I am not special. I’m not sitting here trying to compare myself to Einstein, who was also apparently bored by school early on due to his superior intellect. The point of this brief anecdote is simply to say that I, like many kids, hated the structure and forced learning environment of formal education. Many kids, especially those that are academically gifted and of higher intelligence, hate the regimented structure of being told what to study, and how to do so.

This formal structure—by design—rarely does anything to encourage or promote independent thought and learning, or critical thinking skills. It only truly caters to the suggestible, the submissive, the conformist, and the over-achiever eager to please. And while the progressive “educators” still claim to promote individualism and creativity, it is only within their fascist guidelines of political-correctness and non-offensiveness.

Problems With Modern “Education”

Yet this article is not really about the problems with today’s educational and academia system—of which there are countless—and I therefore don’t want to get too off topic by elaborating on these issues. Suffice it to say, that these problems will only continue to increase as the educational system becomes even more progressive, feminized, centralized, and geared towards the lowest common denominator, leaving even more intelligent kids—especially boys and young men—by the wayside, or with a profound hatred and resentment towards school.

Essentially, it is a system increasingly designed to indoctrinate, not educate. And although this indoctrination is primarily found in the subjective liberal arts subjects, a generation of students neutered in independent thought, independent learning, critical thinking, and creativity skills will eventually bleed over into the sciences, tech, engineering, and mathematics fields as well. Yet the “STEM” fields are also not entirely immune from the systemic indoctrination and social-engineering of progressive education. For as these fields become increasingly feminized, in a ridiculous politically correct attempt to encourage girls, it will inevitably discourage young men, while also stifling the creativity historically attributed to men in these fields.

Finally, when the system isn’t busy indoctrinating children, the remaining time is spent acting in loco parentis for the problem children, or the children of parents who expect the system to raise their kids for them. This then further diverts time and resources away from actually “educating” intelligent kids who may actually have a real future. Therefore, is it really any wonder why children, especially young men, are becoming more and more disillusioned with school.

Seeking Self Enlightenment

So just because the modern educational system is increasingly forsaking intelligent young men, while catering to an ever increasing population of lobotomized children devoid of independent thought, this is still no excuse for ignorance. This is not an excuse for children and men to “lay down and die” intellectually. No, far from it. This is instead a call-to-arms for all men—especially those of you still in school or college—to understand that the educational system is broken, and to free yourself from the chains of indoctrination. Seek and embrace the power of self-education. There is no excuse for ignorance. In fact, I view the concept of self-education within the larger context of the MGTOW movement as a whole.

Men should view the acquisition of knowledge, and the strengthening of the mind, as one of the key pillars in overall self-improvement. As such, there is a liberating freedom and joy found in pursuing your own academic interests and study. While the structure of formal education is often intellectually confining and stressful, self-education should be relaxing, cathartic, and enlightening.

Self-education can mean many different things to different people—and there is technically no wrong answer—but the way I see it, self-education is the pursuit of knowledge and learning, in areas and subjects of one’s own choosing, and at one’s own leisure. It is the pursuit of constructive and intellectually stimulating and strengthening endeavors, as opposed to passive mindless pursuits—such as television or video games. Yes, there is a time and a place to just relax and “veg out” in front of the television, but being a “gamer” is hardly a constructive pursuit. Instead, men should pursue hobbies and intellectual activities that build real and useful skills, and promotes actual self-improvement in the real world.

I understand that not everyone is a “reader”, or enjoys reading, but I can’t stress enough the importance of reading as a foundation of self-education and improvement. I believe that all men should take the time to read, and to study topics and subjects of their own interest. I also believe that these topics should include a wide range of non-fiction, as well as current events, news, editorials, and classic literature, as a part of becoming intellectually well-rounded.

Yet self-education can be much more than just reading, it can also include pursuing constructive hobbies, learning new skills, or engaging in group conversation and debate. It may also include learning to play an instrument or music, or perhaps taking up other artistic or literary pursuits. Self-education can also include teaching yourself a new skill through trial and error, or learning a new skill or trade under the instruction of a qualified teacher or class.

To elaborate on that point, simply because the educational system is broken, that doesn’t mean that one cannot benefit from a formal class, or instruction under a qualified teacher or mentor. There are still decent and qualified teachers out there, as well as practical or informative classes—whether college, community college, trade schools, continuing education, or community classes. Self-education does not have to be solitary, it simply means pursuing your own intellectual interests at your own leisure, and for your own enjoyment and benefit.

I am also not advocating dropping out, or failing to complete your primary education, just because the system is broken. This also does not necessarily mean that you should forgo formal education or college, if it’s something that you desire or need for a chosen career path, so long as you weigh the cost benefit analysis and understand what you are doing. In the end, all I am saying is to be the master of your own educational and intellectual destiny.


Self-education—and the pursuit of knowledge and truth—should be the goal of all men, regardless of how they may achieve it, or how they may perceive their own intelligence. There is simply no excuse for ignorance. The failure of the educational system should be viewed as a positive, in that self-education can free you from a broken and failed system, or allow you to pursue your own academic interests at your own discretion. Although I personally have a college degree, I am not some sort of elitist snob who equates a degree or higher education with intelligence or knowledge. In fact, in many cases, a degree is nothing more than a very expensive sheet of paper. Therefore, the pursuit of knowledge does not require a degree or formal “education” to validate it, nor does it necessarily require those things to achieve it. Self-education is liberating, enlightening, and is a lifelong pursuit, and it is up to you how you achieve it. There is no excuse for ignorance.

© 2014 By AB Nihilist, All Rights Reserved


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