There are as many definitions for ‘education’ as there are people interested in some aspect of it. My own is simple and one that I have found to be effective. Education is learning to learn.
My own education followed more or less that definition after the initial schooling was over. Post school achievements for me were all autodidactic, except for my Masters Degree, which by an accident I acquired by attending regular classes in an institution of learning.
And, this is the important point that I wish to drive home in this post, the Bachelor’s Degree and the Masters Degree that I acquired, in my humble opinion, equipped me for getting admission to the institute of management and getting a job via campus recruitment respectively, AND NOTHING ELSE of practical value, except that both enabled me to learn how to learn.
Post my professional qualification my employer took great pains to train me to be an effective manager and to this day I acknowledge that debt as being a greater one than my other academic achievements.
And more importantly for my life, the education that I received in our traditional way of the Guru-Shishya Parampara in learning Vedanta from a remarkable teacher and his teacher, has enabled me to live a peaceful and productive life.
All these would not have been possible for me had I not been prepared for learning to learn, by a very remarkable system of grounding called the Montessori method of primary education in my childhood.
Having shared my own experiences, I would simply add that I am appalled at what happens now in our country in the field of education, particularly in the higher levels where we are producing graduates and post graduates who are unemployable. There are some notable exceptions to this rule but they are the ones that select the cream from the hordes that are churned out in the system by a highly competitive selection procedure. For the rest, the less said the better.
I am glad that my own life is at its last stages where I don’t have to compete to learn anything.
This topic was suggested by Shackman for the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where currently six of us write on the same topic every Friday. I hope that you enjoyed my contribution to that effort. The five other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order, Ashok, gaelikaa, Maxi, and Shackman and The Old Fossil. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, or not at all this week, do give some allowance for that too!