American baseball great Charlie Hough says, "Listen to everyone. Learn from everyone. Nobody knows everything but everyone knows something."
At her citizenship hearing in 1967, Immaculata Cuomo (mother of the late New York governor Mario Cuomo) was asked by the judge how many stars were on the US flag. She said she didn't know, but could she ask the judge a question? After he agreed, she asked him how many hands of bananas were on a stalk. He admitted he didn't know, so she proudly said, "Well, I do." Her citizenship was granted. Here was a judge who wisely realized that everyone has something to teach.
"Live to learn and you will learn to live," says a Portuguese proverb. For life cannot be lived well in ignorance. In fact, those who live life to the fullest have a PhD in living. This is what a PhD in living means:
P is for "poor in knowledge." Those who live best realize that they can never learn enough.
H is for "hungry to learn." Those who hunger for knowledge will always find plenty to eat.
D is for "desire to succeed." Those who desire to learn and improve, and those who persist in spite of obstacles, will live fully.
Realize you're poor in knowledge, become hungry to learn and desire to succeed. Everybody and every occasion can become your teacher, and this is the PhD that will open the door of living fully.
-- Steve Goodier