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outlier_lynn

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outlier_lynn: (Default)
Friday, April 15th, 2011 08:46 am
I was recently asked "What do you think of Landmark Education?" As I was considering an answer, I realized that the question I really wanted to answer was "What do you think of Landmark's education?"

So let me answer both questions in order. Landmark Education is a very large, employee owned company with offices in many US cities and many countries. I don't know exactly how large. It is, though, large and diverse. It is managed by the "top" 60 or so people. In practice, though, it is run by paid staff at each location (called "centers"). All that means is that Landmark Education is run by a whole lot of middle managers just like any large organization. It is subject to the same flaws and foibles. Landmark Education is a bureaucratic nightmare. Worse than some, but better than most. Their customer service is a bit ragged, though. The staff at each Center is asked to do more than is possible as individuals. it is part of the training.

With that said, I have no fondness for Landmark Education. I usually don't like dealing with large organizations. And Landmark fits neatly in the middle of that dislike.

On to the second question. Landmark's Education is spectacular. I know that people like to lump Landmark's programs in with "self help." but it is self help like getting a Masters of Fine Arts is self help. it is an education. Really.

In all my public education through high school, I was taught and drilled in language and math skills. Those skills were applied to history, science, literature and other subject in which I was to learn the meaning of things and the manipulation of other things so that I would seem educated to those around me. Then in college, I was taught mostly the same things again in the liberal arts. And more depth in the sciences.

Landmark is not that kind of education. Apply yourself to Landmark's education and you learn how to discern the difference between your ass and a hole in the ground. Most people go through their entire lives not knowing the difference between reality and superstition. People believe all sorts of things that are demonstrably not true.

Landmark's core curriculum, the Curriculum For Living, delivers. Completing the four courses does not make you smarter, prettier, wealthier, sexier, or any other -er. You do not graduate as a better you. What you get, if you really "study" and "do the homework," is an unanticipated clarity. And not like "knowing" the difference between what is real and what is superstition, but experiencing life as it is rather than as one's interpretation of how it is. And that is rare and fabulous. Landmark Education does not tell you how life is (that is the job of public education, family,. community, churches, media, friends, etc.) or what to think. Landmark Education provides the skills to see how life is in reality. Landmark does not give you a set of beliefs. Not a single "belief" is sight! Landmark Education provides access to knowing the difference between what is real and what one believes is real. And in that difference lies living a wonderfully satisfying life.

To sum it up, then, Landmark Education is a ridiculously inept, imperfect vehicle that delivers an extraordinary education.