That tingling feeling under the scalp. Synapses happily firing away. Aha moments. Quiet conquests of a new slices of reality and imagination. Mind over matter (said the mind). As long as there is learning. My favourite past-time as a child was reading, the scratch for the itch of curiosity, the key to an alternative reality all in my own head.

I was the kid with the nose in a book (the input channels have gotten a bit more diverse, the joy is still there). Perfecting the art of walking slowly whilst reading, peeking over the top margin of the book to not fall over obstacles or being run over by cars (please don’t try this, even villages aren’t as quiet as they used to be…).

The primary motivation behind this core value is as Goethe wrote “dass ich erkenne was die Welt | im innersten zusammenhaelt” (that I might understand what holds the world together from the inside). Understanding, to then make things better. No magic or involved there, just the striving and the work. This became such a big part of my life it turned into a career.

Learning opens our horizon, gives us new perspectives, touches us deeply in who and how we (think we) are. It allows us to imagine a whole different future, a whole different reality altogether. It promotes understanding, not just of a subject, but also of our fellow humans. And, if we let it, in precious moments even a bit more understanding of ourselves.

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