Happy Teachers Day

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Belated Happy Teachers Day. I want to thank all my teachers.
Guru in our culture is given a place above God. In our mythological stories you will find the name of the Guru of any personality who is of significance. Guru is given greater importance than even the vaidya (doctors of the ancient times); because doctor can only save the life but the Guru tells you what to do with it.

However, recently I was listening to Sugata Mitra’s lecture; he says "A teacher, who can be replaced by a computer, should be". If this is the case then probably, most of the teachers who have taught me since kinder garden would be replaced by boxes. In fact in retrospect, I realise, I might have done better learning thrugh computers, than most of the teachers who taught me in school and college.

So is the species of teachers heading towards extinction?

This reminds me of Mahabharata. How did Ekalvya learn the art of Archery so well? He did not have a Teacher... he learnt on his own.

Dronacharya was an inspiration. Mahabharata seem to emphasis the fact that what makes you learn is more important than how you learn? It clearly defines the job of a teacher and the process of learning. It’s not the resources, or any teacher you need for learning. You just need a source of inspiration, determination and constant motivation, and the learning will follow.

In fact in Buddhism there is no God, Buddha is supposed to be a teacher. People who have never seen Buddha are his students. Even Hinduism teaches you to lead life.

It’s like this- you give a hungry man fish he will get hungry again. You teach him to fish, he never  be hungry, but he will never enjoy fishing. You inspire a man to learn fishing, he will himself find more innovative ways to fish, he will love the job and will be proud of his achievement.

Of about the 100 of teachers that have taught me, I remember only a few who made a difference in my life, who actually just inspired me to learn & the learning has followed, and I am still motivated to learn. I am not motivated to learn most of the things that were spoon fed.

The schools like DPS, CMS etc., are factories that have an assembly line arrangement for producing quality products. But are their teachers actually creating any value for the system? If you spoon feed kids which is meaningless to them, they may get good grades but how many enjoy studying. Science is given priority over social science. Why? No wonder the students who take up these subjects are so demotivated. No wonder our country is in such a debilitated state.

Respecting teachers is not something to be taught; you are bound to respect a person you look up to.
Talk to your parents/ grandparents, they will tell you how their teachers influenced them.

In reality, teaching is the most innovative job. Teachers who cry, that they do a thankless job are actually doing injustice to the society and depriving the innocent of the joy of learning. They not only deprive the society of the innovation but also insult the job they have been chosen for.

Concluding the post I just want to say that life gives you what you deserve. And teaching is not a thankless job. It’s the way you do it.


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