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Modern Education

by Swami Sivananda

If you compare the present system of education with our ancient Gurukula system, there is a wide gulf between the two systems. Every student in the Gurukula had perfect moral training. This was the predominating feature of our ancient culture. Every student possessed humility, self-restraint, obedience, spirit of service and self-sacrifice, good demeanour, politeness, courteous nature and, last but not least, a desire for acquiring Atma Jnana.

In the present system, the moral side of education is absolutely ignored. The college students of the present-day do not possess any virtues at all. Self-control is a thing unknown to them. Luxurious living and self-indulgence begin from their very boyhood. Arrogance, impertinence and disobedience are deep-rooted in them. They have become confirmed atheists and rank materialists. They have no knowledge of Brahmacharya and self-control. Fashionable dress, undesirable food, bad company, frequent attendance at theatres and cinemas, have rendered them weak and passionate. The Health Officers of Calcutta reported that 75 per cent of students are unhealthy in Calcutta and Dacca. The Health Officers of Bombay reported that 90 per cent of students are unhealthy in Karachi and about 15 per cent are suffering from venereal diseases in Bombay. It has indeed been detected that the health of students has deteriorated throughout India. Moreover, the vices and bad practices which are ruining their health are on the increase among students. There is no ethical culture in modern schools and colleges. Modern education tends to develop the intellect only.

DUTY OF TEACHERS

A great and onerous duty rests upon the teachers and professors of schools in training the students in the path of Sadachara (right conduct) and in moulding their character properly. They themselves should be strictly moral and pure. They should be endowed with ethical perfection. Otherwise it will be like the blind leading the blind. Before taking to the profession of a teacher, every teacher should feel the high responsibility of his position in the educational line. Mere intellectual achievement in the art of delivering dry lectures alone will not suffice. This alone will not adorn a professor.

The future destiny of the world rests entirely in the lap of the teachers and the students. If the teachers train their students in the right direction, in the path of righteousness, the world will be filled with good citizens, Yogis and Jivanmuktas who will radiate light, peace, bliss and joy everywhere.

O teachers and professors! Wake up now. Train the students in the path of Brahmacharya, righteousness and morality. Make them true Brahmacharis. Do not neglect this divine work. You are morally responsible for this onerous task. This is your Yoga. You can have Self-realisation if you take up this work in right earnest. Be true and sincere. Open your eyes now.

Blessed is he who truly endeavours to make his students true Brahmacharis. Twice blessed is he who tries to become a real Brahmachari. May the blessings of Lord Krishna be upon them! Glory to the teachers, professors and students!


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