What is true education?
Puttaparthi, Sai Kulwanth Hall (1996 Special Discourses )
The education imparted to the students today does not conform to the moral, ethical or spiritual values and hence is the pitiable condition of today’s education. Sadgunambulu, sadbudhdhi, satyanirathi, Bhakthi, kramasiksha, kartavya palanamulu Nerpunade vidya, vidyaarthi nervavalayau! Good virtues, good mind, and adherence to truth Devotion, discipline and duty, Education that teaches these is true education! The education that a student must learn! Therefore mere acquaintance with books should not be considered as education. One must express one’s true nature of human quality keeping in view the welfare of the society and the future of the country.
Swami on the downward trend of present education system00:02:00
It is enough if one has faith in oneself. How can one trust others if one does not trust oneself? This is the downward trend of the modern education. It is no true education at all. People think that the modern education imparts knowledge but the modern education divides the world. So one should develop discretion and discrimination. Education without discrimination is useless. What is the use of such education? Vidyalanniyu nerchi yemi viluva? sunna! Yemmelu biyyelu pasaivachchi, peRigaanchina pedda vaaralaina Sampadalundiyu saddaanaparulaina, pudami keerthiniGanua punyulaina, Aayuraarogyambulanavaratambundi, paripoorna balulaguvaarulaina, Satatambu tapamulu, japamulu cheyuchu, vedamulanu nerchu viprulaina, Saatiraaru bhaktulaku yenatikaina, daivabhaktulu kaanide raadu mukti!! Inthakannanu vereddi yeruka parathu, saadhusadguna ganyulaou vidyarthulaara!! What is the value of such education? Zero!! One may be reputed for one’s education with great degrees of BA or MA One may be wealthy and famous for charity and affluence, One may have long span of life with health and strength, One may be a scholar of Vedas and immersed in penance, chanting etc, But none can ever equal the devotees at any time, Liberation cannot be had without devotion for God What else can I say to the august and noble gathering of students!! What else can one ask for?!!
Education has become Business00:00:47
In every possible way, the education system is disintegrating. Day by day, the values of the system are on the decline. Education is being used like a business. This business is more and more in the fields of Medicine and engineering. Having spent lakhs and lakhs of money to get degrees, I do not understand what sort of happiness you get out of it?
Sad state of Education System today00:01:39
Today's modern education is increasing your intelligence but it is not improving your character even a little bit. Having acquired crores of types of knowledge, without character, what is the end result? What is its value? Why do you need this intelligence? The education is being used to cheat others, to sustain one's selfishness, to experience self interest. The education system is not helping in anyway the society or country.The type of education that is not useful to you in your day-to-day life will not help you.
Education without purpose is useless00:01:47
All appear to be well-educated, but none knows what education is. All are endowed with education. They don’t know what "vidya" (education) is. "Vid" + "Ya" - that which confers wisdom. What sort? Is it physical knowledge or worldly knowledge or knowledge of this creation or knowledge of the world beyond or knowledge of Brahman or knowledge of the spirit or the soul? Here, we find only bookish knowledge - no other knowlede is found. In these circumstances, how to assess the value of the education? A tree without a fruit, a fruit without the juice,an animal without intelligence, what is the use or having born and died? You live here only to know the use of life. Without realizing the objective of this life what is it that you know? O brother!? What is that you have known till now? You study with an objective. When you dont know the very objective, what is the use of studying?
Swami on Current Educational System00:03:22
Every year, the education institutions are creating lakhs and lakhs of graduates and letting them loose onto the world. What about their future? What is the goal of the education system? What is the essence of this education? When we put these questions, we understand that education system is functioning mechanically. In today's education, there is not even a trace of noble courtesy, good character and tradition. They make use of their education for selfishness and self interests and not at all using for the welfare of the society. In this country of Bharath, there are two hundred universities, ninety thousand colleges, one crore students are learning in degree colleges. Nobody is able to understand and figure out the solutions, the methodology or fruits of this education. No one is analyzing if every year, lakhs and lakhs of students become graduates and come into this world, what will happen to the world? They don't appear to be educational institutions; they all look like a workshop that give away degrees. Nobody is bothered about their future. The government also thinks of the increase in the number but not refining the education methodology. Wherever one looks, one finds educational institutions coming up like mushrooms. Many institutions have started even without the permission of the government.
Flip side of todays education System00:02:00
In this land of bharath, which was once upon a time having an education system that consisted of various forms of arts has today lost all its strength. The present education system attaches value to only degrees. Having received the degrees, are they meant to fill your stomach (earn your daily bread)? Or are these degrees meant for solving the problems of the society? Or Are these degrees meant to acquire wisdom? This kind of enquiry of the objectives of the education is not being made by either by students, authorities or parents. Is it education if it is not useful or helpful to the society or the country?
Swami on worldly and spiritual education00:02:00
Whatever small work we do, we should think, discriminate whether it is good or bad. Take time. Do not be hasty. “Haste makes waste. Waste brings worry. So do not be in a hurry”. Whatever may happen, be peaceful. Pray God. Improve your love for God. That love becomes the divine nectar to you. It removes your sorrow. This is the education you have to learn. You can learn worldly knowledge. These give us livelihood. But we should have spiritual education also. Worldly knowledge is for living and be happy in this physical world and the spiritual knowledge is for life and be happy in the other world. These two are like negative and positive. We fill our heart with all negative and we aspire for positive. It is not possible. If we fill negative, all our thoughts will be negative. We cannot ask for positive. You first fill your heart with positive. You will get good thoughts. Worldly learning is related to your mundane living. Devotional and spiritual education is for knowing and reaching the Supreme. No objection for any of these. You have to lead your life in between these two.
What is education and what is culture00:01:36
People study and spend hours and hours in research in laboratories. People examine, experiment and experience but there is no trace of happiness in life. When asked they reply that they are great scientists. “O boy, how do you obtain water?” when so questioned they immediately reply, “Hydrogen and Oxygen when mixed together you get water sir.” It is gained by reading the books but not by doing practically. It is true that in laboratory by mixing Hydrogen and Oxygen one gets water. But in daily life how can water be manufactured? Sitting in front of the plate laden with food, are people mixing Hydrogen and Oxygen? People want water. There is a difference in education and culture. Water can be made with Hydrogen and Oxygen. To know how to distribute the small quantity of water to ten people around is culture. There is nothing great in making; making proper use of it is greatness. People must know the ways to use properly. Putting things to proper use is ‘Culture’. Therefore, education must be accompanied by culture.
The third eye for man is knowledge00:03:32
Wisdom is main ‘eye’ gifted to mankind. Without the eye of wisdom, man is just an animal. Therefore knowledge is the third eye in man. Character is the very life of the sacred education. One may read different Vedas and shastras, but one must recognise that the human values are important. Though being educated and knowledgeable, A foolish person doesn’t know himself!! With all the education and knowledge, A mean man will not give up his qualities!! Man with all the education indulges in arguments, He would never get total wisdom!! Why study to die? Study to be immortal!! What is it that dies? It is only the body that dies. What is born must one day die. The Atma, that is neither born nor is annihilated, has no birth or death. Therefore one must aspire to achieve the divine wisdom which is beyond birth and death. One takes birth and dies again and again, One sleeps in the mother’s womb again and again!! It is difficult to cross the ocean of life, So seek refuge in the Lord!! Chant the Lord’s name!! O foolish man! Chant the Lord’s name!!
How the word, Rishikula turned to school in modern times00:03:11
The word ‘Rishi’ relates to those people who had no delusions about the body but naturally exhibited the attachment to the atma and were immersed in peaceful and harmonious existence with a spirit of sacrifice and equality. The rishis were the ideal examples to others. For this reason, the ashrams where such people resided were called ‘Rishikul’. Such sacred ideals are no longer seen in today’s man and they have been replaced by unsacred qualities such as hatred, pride, pompous nature, and untruth. Due to this change, the letters “Ri” in ‘rishikul’ have taken a back seat. Only the letters “shikul” remain. This shikul has become the ‘school’ of the modern day. Because the schools today have developed such unsacred qualities, the letters “Ri” have disappeared and only the word ‘shikul’ remains. The sacred letters ‘Ri’ must be regarded as the primordial sound ‘om’ and must be restored to its place before the word ‘school’ by all means possible and it is everyone’s duty to restore Bharath again as a promoter of such sacred qualities by imbibing the noble ideals into our schools.
Ideal teachings given by Rishikula's and Gurukula's00:02:40
In this sacred country of Bharath, from time immemorial the idea of service has been handed down by the Rishis and gurus at rishikulas and Gurukulas and they have enjoined on us that we should fulfil our lives by service. The Gurukulas taught moral values and ethics to develop the best qualities in men and helped them to become the sacred human beings. The Gurukulas taught morals and moral life where as the rishis of the Rishikulas, promoted actions that were in accordance with the ideals and the morals taught by the gurus. One school did the teaching and the other taught the implementation (practise) of those teachings. However, today neither the gurus or Gurukulas, nor such rishis and Rishikulas exist. In the word “Gurukula”, the first part is “Gu.” And the first part is “Ri.” in the word “Rishikula”. The two parts together make up ‘Guru’, meaning the teacher. The concept of a real Guru has been handed over by these two ashrams.
Turn bookish knowledge into practical knowledge00:00:35
They do not explain clearly about what truth is and what is justice. All of that amounts to impractical and bookish knowledge. People are turning their minds into books and vice versa. No, it is not correct. The matter in the book should go into the head and then it should be put into practice. Then the form too will change.
True education leads to control of senses00:00:32
Education has the proper meaning only if you are able to control your sense organs, set your ideas on the right path, keeping your mind clean.
Defects in present educational system00:01:52
It is because of the defects in our educational system, that a stage has been reached where our youth— both boys and girls—are sometimes taking to bad and unacceptable ways. This will be so, as long as the educational system confines itself wholly to worldly matters and so long as you learn about things relating to the world only. Our educational methods should include spiritual, religious, ethical and moral aspects. It is only then that there is a possibility of the situation being corrected.
Education enables discrimination00:01:00
Education does not consist in the accumulation of information and facts from a multitude of books. Reading of books can only enrich you in the information that you may gather but can never give or promote good qualities. You will have to regard good education as a process by which your character is improved and by which you will be able to use your intelligence and sharpen your mind so as to distinguish right from wrong.
Educational content must be value-oriented00:01:35
It does not matter even if there are no big reforms in our educational system, but it is sad that in the name of education, our youth are acquiring such queer habits that their parents are not able to lift their heads in the public because of shame. It is only when the contents of education that you get are closely linked with ideals of sacrifice, forbearance, truth and love that the youth will get the benefit of education. Students will never get any benefit out of education if it is devoid of these noble principles.
What is true education00:00:35
Embodiments of Love! Fill your hearts with love. See that you grow truth in your mind. Let all your acts be sacred. This is the true education you must acquire. Secular knowledge is also essential but true education should empower you to know the unity in diversity.
Bhagawan on today's education system00:03:00
Today, because teachers who only care for their salary, comforts and their life, we are not able to recognise amongst them the selfless teachers and good teachers. You should also teach the students. 'Do not think that the education is only for degrees. Education is to give service and not to serve under someone'. You should not fill your heads with education or thoughts and burden by putting this heavy degrees on your head. You should fill your mind with good ideas and good thoughts. We should not follow a life which consists of filling your head with all the information that is contained in the world and getting confused about it. They are only using their educational learning for earning money but not using it for the good of the country. From such learned, educated people, the country gets no benefit at all. People who use their education only for filling their stomachs, for promoting their interests of their family and for promoting their own personal reputation are very large in number. Because people who are educated are so large in number that, the sacredness of Bharat has deteriorated.
Role of teachers in students life00:01:29
Teachers are ideals. The teachers should put into practice and hand them over to students. As the teachers are, so the students would be. Teachers may be compared to a water tank. Students are like the taps. The kind of water that we fill in the tanks, the same water will come through the taps. Thus, it is only when we fill the tanks of teachers hearts with the qualities like selflessness and lack of pride, the students who are like the taps would get these good qualities of selflessness and lack of ego through them.
Role of teachers in making ideal students00:01:48
It is not as if in this country there are no wealthy people. It is not as if there are no highly educated people. It is not as if there were no lands which were ruled by great rulers. Inspite of the fact that there are people who have attained such high positions in these areas, people of Bharat are not having peace and prosperity. What is the reason? The main cause is the bad conduct of the people. Today these two qualities, ego and selfishness have entered the hearts of all people, people who are wealthy, people who are educated, people who are scholars and finally people who are the heads of the Pithas. They also are suffering from these bad qualities. In this context, to remove the bad qualities from children and make them free from such bad qualities, the responsibility rests on teachers.
Impart virtues to Students; Swami to Teachers00:02:22
Students of today are only promoting their intelligence. They are forgetting that good qualities are also essential along with intelligence and they attach importance to worldly life.The teachers should make an attempt to make the students to promote good qualities as well. More than intelligence, good qualities are important. In the field of education today, because there is no place whatsoever for ethics, morality and spiritual attitude, the education has come down to such an extent. They have lost the meaning of what is meant by ethical respect.They are not recognizing the welfare of the society to any extent. They are unable to understand that, for their own life, the goodness and welfare of the society is required. Whatever learning one may acquire, if one has no idea to do good for others, then his education would become useless. That day when man realizes the need to do good to others is the essence of his life, his life would blossom.
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