Combining the Element of Indian Morals with Modern Education
There’s a gentle wind blowing across the sky, the birds are chirping far above in the trees, and there are silent sounds in the background, of cows moving and dogs barking. The melody of the surroundings is abruptly broken by some nervous shuffling of feet, and the sound of laughter and chatter starts echoing in the area. As the feet come closer, a firm voice greets them with warmth. The chattering breaks and a unanimous voice erupts in the area- “Namaste Sir”, it says. The feet now stop shuffling and begin to settle and a rough echo of the opening of bags, and taking out of books begins. The firm voice now takes control and starts to teach a lesson on Mughal Dynasty.
This is how a typical Gurukula Class looked like in the 18th Century.
Our lives today are so blended into a race for money, fame, and jobs that we forget to appreciate that which we were born into, and forget to let our morals bring us an inner peace that could act as an Engine for us to bear all external burdens.
The Morals that we’ve taken birth on, the morals that our parents have tried to inculcate in us since our childhood days, are the morals that if, made part of our daily lives, could bring us an inner contentment that we’ve been craving since forever.
There thus comes a need for us to ensure that the Students today have elements of these morals within their Every Day Education to ensure not just a system that connects their Education to their inner selves but to have a type of Education whose value stays with them throughout life- and adds up with time.
In this generation of Students, where a look of their Facebook News Feed is the most important life task they have for the day, and clicking a selfie in a new outfit they’ve worn has become the most precious thing for them to do, the idea of having an Education System based on Indian Morals seems like an impossible idea.
But having such a system is possible, and this Article focuses on how it can be done.
Developing Character and Personality
Isn’t the idea of going to a big mall, buying the newest Gucci handbag and Prada Shoes attractive to the present generation?
The Vedic System in the ancient times has laid prime emphasis on the need of having the child’s personality development. While the meaning of personality has today become wearing branded clothes and expensive shoes- our children need to understand that the true meaning of personality and character lies in the way they behave, the way they empathize, and the way they see things.
But how do we make them understand it?
The method remains the same, but the approach needs to be different.
During a Value Education class, Ask a student with small height and thick glasses how many times he’s been bullied in the class. The number that he tells you will be a big one and would surprise you to an amazing extent.
Have the students in a Science Class raise up their hands if their answer to this question is yes: “Have you taken science on your own will, or the society and your family has forced you to take it?” The number of hands being raised up will surprise you.
Then ask them another question: “For the people who bullied them, forced them or made them do something they didn’t want to do, what change would they want in that person?” The complaints that you’ll hear will be many, and the opinions they give will be cruel.
After hearing these complaints, introduce them to the idea of Character and Personality development, and how essential it is for them to learn. Make them understand that things like bullying, betrayal, and prejudices will only come to an end if the people living in it have a developed character: and the youngest, newest, most important part of this “people” is they, themselves.
This way, you can have elements of Indian Morals blended in today’s children, and improve their overall growth as human beings.
Improving Focus and Eliminating Distractions
Meditation, since long, has been a practice prejudiced to be done only by an old priest belonging to the 15th century, sitting in a Temple, alone.
In the mindset of our youngsters, it is only a practice undertaken by the uncool, old generation of their grandparents who are also the ones in scolding them when they eat too much fast food.
But what the young mind does not understand is how meditation can be their escape from all wrong emotions they want to get rid of, to all external pain and can become the key to attaining perfect concentration.
When a math class is about to begin, ask all the students to sit quietly, close their eyes, and count every breathe they take till they’ve completed 10 breathes.
Then, start the class and give them questions to solve. The number of students answering these questions will surprise both you and then- it’ll be obvious how a small session of meditation has improved their concentration so enormously that they’ve easily solved a question they once considered to be the biggest nuisance in their life.
After the class, make the students understand that how meditation can not only help them focus on studies but also enlighten them to a deeper, emotional level. It can help them deal with their daily frustration and become their door to internal peace.
Being Practical and Working on Things
How many times have you seen a child’s eyes light up at the idea of performing a scientific experiment in the school lab instead of having to read about it from a school textbook?
How many times have you heard an excited chatter filling your classroom when you announce an educational trip to a museum to learn about history?
The Vedic System’s most important base was to focus on practical aspects of teaching more than the theoretical ones. The ancient teachers believed that by experiencing real-life elements and seeing things, the children could learn much more than they do by reading books.
If the Principals across the schools encourage a focus on a more practical based approach, where students have to perform experiments, visit museums, make projects and have discussions, it would not only increase the student participation but will also improve the children’s learning.
This is how we can inculcate elements of the Indian Morals in our present day education: and make our students not a generation that lives their life on Facebook Posts, Snapchat Filters, and Instagram Stories, but one that likes to explore things that are real, and have a purpose in life to make a difference by their existence.