By Faizah Abubakar
It’s the 21st century, and evidence of the efforts of the scientists before us are all over the place. From the first light bulb, courtesy of Thomas Edison, all the way to Neil Armstrong making his way to the moon.
So I don’t beat about the bush; let’s get straight to it. Many will say, “How on earth would Archimedes’ principle, Hook’s law, or the Almighty formula for quadratic equations possibly help me in my day-to-day life?” And guess what, it won’t. But that’s not the point. Let’s be honest; we can name thousands of laws and thousands of principles, yet not a single one seems to help me change a tyre or change a light bulb. Not even in the simplest of tasks do these seem even a little bit useful now, do they?
Or maybe, just maybe, we aren’t looking at it from the right perspective. Einstein lived in the 20th century. Things like automobiles, cars, and airplanes were not as popular as we have today. They exist in great numbers today because of the discoveries he and other scientists made.
Jabir Ibn Hayyan, who we know today as the father of chemistry, discovered Hydrochloric acid (from salt) and Nitric acid (from saltpetre). These acids are used in medicine, mechanics, and agriculture, to name a few.
The point here is that we are in a constantly evolving generation, and we must leave behind the mindset that what we learn in school doesn’t benefit us. Yes, maybe for our daily lives, it may not seem to have an impact. But we aren’t going to school to become average members of society. We are going to school to enable ourselves to become paramount members of civilisation.
“You don’t have to be Einstein to Mc2.” This little play on words is my way of saying we don’t have to be geniuses. We don’t have to be crazy lab scientists before using what we learn to impact our world. You know what they say, knowledge is power. So how about, rather than criticising, we accept the knowledge wholeheartedly? Changing the world can’t be that hard, right?
Faizah is of I-Scholars International Academy, Abuja.