I guess enlightenment is a path not a sudden revelation, it's a long hard path.
Well, I think Caroline is right. I think that it does take an effort to learn wholly new things, no matter how smart or intelligent you are .
Nevertheless, no matter how hard one has to work to understand something or to solve a problem. When the understanding or the solution finally appears, it does have a flavour of revelation (maybe because that feeling is what we associate to the word revelation). Which doesn't mean that there has been no previous work.
I think the hardest part is to learn things nobody knows and that therefore can't be taught 
, that is
complicated. It usually is once the discovery is made when it is possible to look for the best way to employ or explain it and, somehow, to make it more natural 
. Even if the process of resolution of a problem is not optimal or if the results are wrong there might be a worthy question left.
When just searching for knowledge in a general direction, without a clear notion of what you are going to find, it seems very easy to get lost. We want an outcome, but I'm not sure we know what exact knowledge will lead to it.
Regardless of the degree of success of Mankind attempts to understand itself, maybe everybody so far has just been searching in the wrong place.
Maybe we are too used to things that are not true but that sound familiar and spend most of our time searching in the wrong direction.
Moreover, there seem to be things that need not only to be understood, but to feel right 
. What I'd really
want to know is what do I have to do to feel right what is right if ever I finally discover what it is.
Probably when we are able to understand something comparatively fast it's just because we already had some information about it. I think that possibly intelligent people just have more information of the right kind.
Although no teachers means as well no bad teachers imposing you their errors and forcing you to learn by heart things that you don't really understand or care about.
For example, take something like the multiplication algorithm. From an adult's point of view it's among the easiest things he's able to do. It can take time for a child to fully understand it, even if most of them memorize it quite easily. But there are lots of resources developed to make easier the task of understanding it (those blocks representing units and those containers with ten holes, and those bigger containers with ten bigger holes for the smaller containers and so on...).
I mean... in Ancient Rome, multiplying was certainly not so evident. I've been told somewhen that someone able to multiply in Ancient Rome had a profession. I'm not sure of this, but it makes sense...
For example, smoking is very probably bad for human health. Lots of people know this and smoke. Because the feeling of smoking is right, it causes pleasure (apparently).
I don't think a perfect world's design would include smoking, though. I think the best and absolutely unachievable solution for this is that smoking causes displeasure. But no understanding of the effects of tobacco can possibly annulate the physical pleasure of smoking.
So instead we use anguish or fear. A lot of people, including me, has never tried a cigarette because of the possible consequences. More incredibly, people who likes smoking succeeds in quitting. And it seems there are more chances of success when family and friends are aware of the intention of quitting... which means that possibly pride and shame work as well.