The pen and book are of no use, though, if the student and the teacher are not interested in finding things out. The horror of the Taliban is the same horror one finds in religious fanatics of any sort, or political zealots for that matter. They do not wish to know anything. They believe they have already been handed the complete set of answers to everything. They fancy the information comes from God or from some local manifestation of some god but the root of their brand of evil is their belief that they already know everything.
They lack inquisitiveness.
What holds us collectively from changing the world is not the absence of a pen or a book.
We are held back by a lack of inquisitiveness.
"The only reason people do not know much is because they do not care to know,” wrote Stephen Fry in the second volume of his autobiography, titled The Fry Chronicles. “They are incurious. Incuriosity is the oddest and most foolish failing there is."