Rapes, suicides, murders, corruption, cheating and overall unhappiness. What happens to the learning spirit of the world which is gutted with negative emotion? According to His Holiness the Gyalwang Drukpa, it is the disconnect between what the head gets and what the heart needs that is the greatest problem of modern education.
“We have become more and more like robots, unfortunately. When children come back from school, they go straight to their laptops or their iPads,” he lamented. He spoke of how good-bye kisses, the tender gestures of love are overlooked. “There is an overall sense of unhappiness around. For example, in my native Ladakh, there are over 200-300 schools and they are going up. But, the numbers of those dependent on drugs and those prone to suicide are also going up. So is there something wrong with our schools?” he asked.
The leader of the Buddhist monastic order that has over a 1,000 monasteries, stressed that the problem with modern education is that it ignores the needs of the heart and the soul. Modern education caters only to the head and concentrates on filling the mind up with knowledge.
“But what about people’s sense of being connected to the world? We have a desire to abuse and we begin with small abuses, of maybe an insect. It progresses until it finally becomes the abuse of the environment. We need to stay connected to the world and this to me is spirituality,” this is what he feels needs to be addressed in our edu-cationsystems,” he said. “Nowadays, education has too much focus on the head and too little on the heart,” he stated.
“Spirituality is the process of learning and experiencing life. This is what modern education needs to include,” he concluded. The ancient philosophy of holistic learning is what he invoked on stage.