Incomplete Education : Part 2
Thanks for various inputs I have received on the earlier article on the subject.
The key points are:
- Courses on “art of living” should be introduced from early school levels
- In olden times, there was this concept of “vidya”..as against the modern day “education”. “Vidya“ covered all important aspects of an ‘integrated ‘ living and more importantly combined ‘meaning’ with knowledge
- Even in Greece, the emphasis was both on what they called “Horizontal” and “Vertical” dimensions of education. The former covered the worldly knowledge, while the latter was about Values, Ethics, Morality and Principles.
Over a period of time, the achievements in the physical world based on the pursuit of Science brought amazing concepts and products, in the service of mankind. There was an ever increasing acceptance that Science was able to address all basic issues faced by the mankind..be it faster transportation, quicker communication, rapid healthcare systems , productive agriculture ..and what not!
People started believing that Science and Technology can provide answers to any and every problem. The World economy started growing rapidly based on the application of the newer inventions. The emphasis on Education naturally shifted to Science dominated themes.
In the process, all aspects of education , other than the knowledge of the physical world around were relegated to sides. Forget about education on Ethics or Morality , even subjects like Arts were meant only for those who could not get admission in to Science/Engg/Medical or Commerce streams.
We have seen times, when ethics/principles/morality , seen to be connected with religions ,are ridiculed by the “intellectuals”.
While I too am a student of Science, I realise the limitations of purely rational approach to life. To address any issue, a Scientist will start with objective measurements. Is it not ironical that Science has no means to even measure some fundamental parameters of life, such as Happiness, Contentment, Peace, Harmony..etc ? You can think of improving on these aspects after you have a clear way to measure them! Why are these limitations not understood by our academicians?
We are often confused about what to do when faced with challenges at multiple levels. Mind is ill and needs inside healing! We need to gain control over the self by affirmations of Self Respect. This crucial aspect is never touched in our system of learning! The result is jealousy, fights, depression and even suicides! The problems are further compounded currently due to the Covid-19 and the prolonged period of lockdown. People, particularly youngsters, are so used to living ‘outside’ that they are getting restless ,sitting at home. Most of them have no idea how to make good use of the ‘free’ time available !
In this background, it is indeed worthwhile to take a note of what an institute like IIT Delhi has recently initiated. In October 2019, the institute has launched a Module called “ Discovery and Management of Self”. This will be a full credit course with 9 sessions of 90 minutes each carrying a credit of 14 units . A student is required to clock a minimum credit of 11 units!. These sessions are being conducted by a Sadhvi (Pravrajika Divyanandaprana) from Ramkrishna Sharda Math, Delhi.
Let us hope this is just the beginning of a much wider acceptance of “learning for life” against “learning for livelihood”!