The School of TowersTales of Tallinn
15. December 2015
In 1265 Margaret Sambiria, the Queen consort of Christopher I of Denmark gave the first orders for the construction of the great Wall of Tallinn. In order to remember the exact borderlines, the Raad of Reval (the council of Town Hall) regularly carried out border-examinations, the so called border-ridings that took place in early mornings. The minstrels and musicians led the cavalcade of city guard, counsels, guild masters, clerks and townsfolk. Every boundary stone was celebrated with jubilation, day after day.
As time went by, an extraordinary wall with limestone towers arose around the downtown - by its heyday in the 16th century, the wall was 2.35km long, about 15 metres high, up to three metres thick and included 47 towers and 9 front gates. Today, approximately 1.85km of the wall has been preserved as well as 22 towers and yet - many of them stand empty. And this is where one rather spectacular idea comes in!
We have managed to preserve a number of Medieval towers together with a remarkable part of the wall - in fact, we have one of the most miraculous places right under our nose! What if we’d turn the fortifications to the most magical school the world has ever seen? Cozy and comfortable spherical rooms, fire crackling on each floor - small classes, intimate atmosphere. The wintertime especially would be a such an idyll while in summertime, the teachings may be done under the greenery of Schnelli park. Different towers could be home for different sciences - the tower for natural sciences, the tower for languages, literature, design, technology, woodwork, calligraphy, music, heritage, philosophy, cooking etc. And at the same time - the towers would be connected to each other by the great wall. Truly, only owls are missing!
In such a wondrous school, students would have the freedom to choose what they’re most interested in. It’d teach them responsibility while giving them the time to focus only on their strongest skills - and for this, they’d be so grateful! There’s one beautiful quote by an unknown author we all may find worth keeping in mind, "Do not educate your child to be rich. Educate him to be happy. So when he grows up, he‘ll know the value of things, not the price.”
What if schools really prepared us for Life? What if we’d be inspired to discover who we truly are, where we might have came from and what we all can do to make life on Earth better? Like, what about cleaning our water? Or our constantly growing ecological footprint? What about healthy? And edible or medicinal plants? Or if everything should go very wrong, do we we have any idea how to grow our own food or make our own bread? Yes, I can google that but I also can google pretty much everything else taught in schools, right? What if google stops existing?
"The true teachers are those who help us think for ourselves" - Radhakrishnan
What about our complicated minds, anxiety and behavioural patterns? Can we find peace in this physical, ever-changing experience? What about true freedom? What about laws and wars and who do they really serve? We’ve all sat in hundreds of history classes but did you ever hear about Rumi, Osho or Cyrus the Great?
What if our young would collectively learn the possibilities of social media and also, it’s dark side? That it’s creating so many insecurities in all of us? What if our attention was consciously drawn to each other, the very person right next to you and we’d learn since the fragile age, how madly beautiful we all already are? And what about love!? Are we love? Is there an ideal and again, who said that? Is there a way to be better, more compassionate and loving partner?
What about spiritual education and guided meditation? Or our imagination? Until we’re herded through the same, cracked educational system, nothing will change for better. And therefore, the focus shouldn’t be just attainment, but on supporting confident, well-balanced citizens who’d understand their importance in the community. And we even wouldn't put an age limit to it!
"I am more than sure that such school is what so many have dreamed of - a school of magical, real knowledge. If we’d do it so well as we imagine it, it’d be such a good project that the whole world would be amazed,” says one of the founders of GUILD, Joan Hint. She adds, “We have introduced these wondrous plans to the city government - the main obstacle they found was positioning tenants of the few occupied towers elsewhere while arranging a crew who’d create it all comme il faut. But to be honest, they were quite fascinated by the idea."
If this idea moved something in you as well and you’d like to be part of establishing such a wondrous school, please be courageous to contact us.