Consider the knowledge you already have — the things you really know you can do. They are the things you have done over and over; practiced them so often that they became second nature. Every normal person knows how to walk and talk. But he could never have acquired this knowledge without practice. For the young child can’t do the things that are easy to older people without first doing them over and over and over. Most of us quit on the first or second attempt. But the man who is really going to be educated, who intends to know, is going to stay with it until it is done. Practice!
Any normal child, at about the age of three or four, reaches the asking period, the time when that quickly developing brain is most eager for knowledge. “When?” “Where?” “How?” “What?” and “Why?” begs the child — but all too often the reply is “Keep still!” “Leave me alone!” “Don’t be a pest!” Those first bitter refusals to our honest questions of childhood all too often squelch our “Asking faculty.”
We grow up to be men and women, still eager for knowledge, but afraid and ashamed to ask in order to get it. Every person possessing knowledge is more than willing to communicate what he knows to any serious, sincere person who asks.
Ask! When you ask, you have to be humble. You have to admit you don’t know! But what’s so terrible about that? Everybody knows that no man knows everything, and to ask is merely to let the other know that you are honest about things pertaining to knowledge.