Saturday 10 December 2016

Hindu View of Life -16

Shri Guruji's well considered view on how to impart religious values in our school curriculum without bringing in any particular religion as such is worth recollecting. "Certain fundamentals can be accepted, viz., belief in a Universal Being pervading the entire universe, and having the realization of that Supreme Principle as one's aim of life. There are many. But broadly speaking, whatever may be the way, controlling the mind and preventing it from going the evil way is the basis. The principles of Yoga form the basis for all religious life, whatever the denomination of one's faith be. Concentration of mind requires some training in Yoga. Emphasis should be on instilling shama damaadi shatsampatti (the six-fold virtues like tranquility, self-restraint) in the children. Now, in the present system, only some information and bread-earning tuition is all that is imparted".

He has also suggested certain courses that can be easily adopted for this purpose.  "Education on a mass-scale giving the right understanding of religion –not the non-religious education that is being imparted nowadays by our politicians, but good, religious education. Give people true knowledge of Islam. Give people true knowledge of Hinduism. Educate them to know that all religions teach man to be selfless, holy and pious. Then, teach history as it is. Set right the present distortions. If there was aggression from the Muslim invaders in the past, say so, and also that the aggressors were foreigners and have nothing in common with the Muslims here. Let our Muslims here say that they are of this land and that the past aggressors and their aggressions are not part of their heritage. Instead of being taught what is true, the Muslims now are taught the distorted version. Truth cannot be hidden for long. However long you hide it, ultimately it comes out and creates only far worse feelings. Therefore I say teach history as it is. If Afzal Khan was killed by Shivaji, say that a foreign aggressor was killed by a national hero". 

On the matter of teaching Sanskrit to students Shri Guruji regretted that there was no attempt even up to the college level to make the students speak simple Sanskrit, as it is done in the case of English. His mind revolted against the practice of even thesis for Doctorate be written in English. Sanskrit is a living language. There are many who speak it. Even today books and papers are published in Sanskrit. With all these, Shri Guruji wondered why Sanskrit is taboo.

Shri Guruji had very clear ideas about the special features of the Hindu concept of education. He says "Recognizing and bringing out the diverse talents latent in man is taken as the cornerstone of modern education. The modern system has yielded substantial results too. We find men of great achievement in the various fields of arts and sciences in all modern countries. Merely stuffing of information into the brain and making it a lumber room, as is done in our country, is not its aim.  The Hindu concept of education goes further. It does not content itself by merely drawing out the latent physical and intellectual faculties in man. According to us life is not a mere bundle of desires and passions; there is an Ultimate Reality residing within us. To realize and manifest That is the basic aim of our system of education". Sri P Parameswaran ji

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