What is education?

Parents generally send their children to schools - day schools, state schools, free schools, private schools, residential schools and so on.

Published: 12th June 2019 06:14 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th June 2019 06:14 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Parents generally send their children to schools - day schools, state schools, free schools, private schools, residential schools and so on. They are not responsible for them. They feel as long as they are very young, up to perhaps five or six, they feel very responsible, after that let them go, throw them to the wolves. This has happened in India, and we have talked a great deal about it in India. And the parents because for economic reasons, and also of tremendous tradition of thousands of years, want to say, ‘You know better than we do about education - educate them.

Because we are much too occupied with our own lives’. So that is one of our problems: the parents are not totally responsible, in the sense we are using the word ‘responsibility’, which means being responsible, feeling the depth of their relationship to their children so that they themselves are educating themselves as well as the children, so that there is no contradiction. When they go home, they don’t find the parents totally in a different area, dimension. That’s one of our difficulties. The other difficulty is financial. Nobody wants to do this kind of work.

They would rather send their children to private, public, schools because it is much safer - at least they think so. Because they think they will have a good job.So these are the many complex problems in so-called... in real education. In the so-called education it is comparatively easy. I do not know if you were listening last night on the television, the Presidents of Yale University and the California university. As you listened to them, they are not concerned at all with the psychological unfoldment or freedom of man. They are concerned with that and not with the other.

So then we ask, what then is education? How is this to be brought about? What is the function of a teacher, the educator? What is his relationship to the student, and what is his relationship to the parent? You are following all this, I hope? Are we meeting each other?

What is the... let’s begin with what is the relationship of the educator with the student? What is his relationship to the student? The speaker, K, because when he goes to India he spends practically a month in each place of these schools, talking with the students, with the teachers, and all the whole school together. So he knows... you know, we have been talking endlessly for last fifty two years about education. So I am asking you as parents, you as educators: what is the relationship of an educator, the teacher, to the student? Is the relationship based on giving information from a status as a teacher? You understand? - status.

He knows and the other fellow doesn’t know, which is a fact, and so his relationship to the student is merely that of giving information, knowledge of a particular subject to the student. So, he has really no relationship with the student.

But when the educator comes... steps down from his platform, from his status, and begins to establish a relationship with the student, in the sense that the teacher is concerned not only with the technological knowledge but with the whole psychological structure, but also what kind of food he eats, what kind of clothes he wears, how he behaves, how he talks, how he eats, how he walks. All this is part of the relationship between the teacher and the student.

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