- The need for education
- Our view of Reality/ World-view/Ontology
- Role/Objectives of human education
- Content of Education
- Pedagogy/process of education
- Outcomes of humane education
- How to supplement the current educational content
- Criterion for acceptance of this course
The need for humane education
Despite the long history of education on this planet, the outcomes for us as individuals, families, society & our impact on our natural environment are far from satisfactory. This is because the content and process of humane education yet remain to be identified in a universal manner: While theism/spiritualism could not enunciate their proposals in a universal manner, materialism/science has not been able to provide a way for universal goodness.
Whereas, we can observe that every human child expects justice since birth, desires for right behavior and work and speaks the truth. The child does not know the above realities (Justice, Right behavior-work & Truth). It depends on education & human tradition (the environment) in order to understand these. Since human tradition as yet does not have a common clear understanding of the truth, beliefs by name of Justice, Right behavior-work & Truth are commonly accepted by various human communities. Accepting such beliefs, or the combination thereof, we grow up to be adult citizens, with our own varying set of notions & assumptions of right & wrong. This has resulted in the confused state we are in today.
We can hence brief the need for human education as follows:
- We humans live our lives based on our assumptions, beliefs and understanding. Humans conform to their assumptions/values or sanskar, unlike animals whose behavior and living is according to their race. If our beliefs change, so do our behavior, goals and actions.
- Humans have the ability of imagination & freedom of action. This is why we end up having different beliefs and differing behaviors.Whereas, we see that every other entity in nature: be it soil, metals, plants and animals exhibit a definite conduct. Humans are yet to have a definite conduct.
- There is a basic innate expectation & desire in every human to have right understanding and live rightfully with definiteness.
- There are realities in existence in the form of Justice, Religion (innate-order) & Truth. (nyaya-dharma-satya) and the right humane way of living
- We can use our imagination abilities to understand these truths and the correct ‘way of living’
- The role of education thus is to enable every human to use their faculty of imagination to understand these realities of existence & human life as they are and live accordingly: spiritually, intellectually, emotionally (in behavior) & in occupation (materially). This leads to definite human conduct & then reflects as coexistence & harmony in living in families, society, nation-states and with nature.
We can hence summarize as follows:
- Human beings belong to the ‘knowledge-order’. Our fundamental need is knowledge.
- Humans have the expectation to understand the truth about everything, including their living
- There are such realities in existence and the possibility that we can understand them
- Humans have the capability for such understanding.
- The role of education is to enable this understanding.
View of Reality/world view/ Ontology
Our content and pedagogical process of education is based on a fundamental and deep understanding of the human conscious, mind & psychology as it is in reality. This is enabled by the Madhyasth Darshan philosophy, or saha-astitva-vaad (coexistential thought). Simply put, existence (reality) is in the form of coexistence, is in harmony. There is spontaneous evolution in existence, and the occurrence of the world consisting of conscious entities – both animals and the human beings as we know it.
Humans on this planet are in a state of ‘awakening progression’ in our consciousness, in a state of illusion, wherein our understanding is partial and our plane of living is akin to that of animals. The human being has been identified as belonging to the ”knowledge-order’ (gyan avastha). Knowledge is the fundamental human need. The basic need for the human being is happiness, and this is possible via knowledge that leads to development to ‘human consciousness’ & living with ‘awakening’. See here for a brief summary of this philosophy.
Role/Objectives of human education
Humans are disposed towards goodness and knowledge of the Truth, because its necessity and possibility exist in reality. Education enables the actions, conduct & study worthy of understanding the truth.
Unhappiness, lack of peace & dissatisfaction in the human itself is conflict and these in turn are themselves the results of conflict. Human necessity is happiness, peace, satisfaction & bliss which is possible via knowledge of & living in human-consciousness.
Enabling this transformation to human consciousness & its expression in living is thus the basic purpose of education. Education enables the arising of civility & culture in a human being. An awakened human being lives with resolution in themselves, with material prosperity in family, trust & cooperation in society & coexistence with nature.
Education enables the awakening and expression of all four dimensions of the human: a) realization/understanding, b) thought/imagination, c) behavioral/social & d) occupational/natural. This addresses the spiritual, intellectual-logical, emotional and material needs of the human. It enables mental healthiness or intellectual balance, social balance and natural balance. It enables qualitative change from inhuman characteristics to humane characteristics and nature.
Such an educated individual then goes on to establish/play their role in humane culture, civility, norms & societal organization. The role of education is to provide the content, process and environment for this transformation in an individual & work synergistic-ally with other societal systems in a manner that are in line with universal human goals.
We can thus summarize that manifestation or appearance of existence itself is discovery and invention by the human being. The generalization process of this understanding in humankind itself is education. Understanding becomes commonly available via education & publicity.
Content of Education
The basic content of human education consists of knowledge, wisdom & science covering conscious & material realities and their inter-relationships:
- Knowledge = Why & How things exist in reality
- Wisdom = What to do – purpose and laws of living
- Science = How to live, how to do – in behavior, work & mind (Science = behavioral science or values, material science and skills)
In other words, the entire content for education is the study of physical, chemical & conscious (jeevan) activities, leading to mental balance, behavioral & social balance & natural balance. This content covers the three dimensions below:
1. Self education (jeevan vidya, जीवन विद्या )
- jeevan vidya – understanding myself, my activities, goals and how I am conscious, the causes for my happiness and unhappiness, my aspirations and fears as they are, in reality.
2. Behavioral education: (value education, मूल्य शिक्षा )
- in Family: understanding my relationships with other humans: in family, with parents, brothers, sisters, etc and with friends, teachers & acquaintances. Understanding the intrinsic values in living and how they can be recognized and fulfilled
- Social education: understanding my relationship with other humans, how human race is one and human religion is one. Understanding social-laws & human values and how to live in them
- Human organizational education: Learning how human society is formed and what our common goals are. Learning to live in family, and the roles, duties and responsibilities, like seva or service in family. Human history.
3. Material education: (vastu vidya, वस्तु विद्या)
- Skill based occupational education: Learning useful skills so I can earn my own living when i grow up. Learning to use my hands and feet on the rest of nature effectively – farming, carpentry, repairing things, making a mobile phone, wind generators, etc.
- Material science education: understanding the physical-chemical processes in nature and how they have evolved, their innate nature and characteristics. Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geography & Mathematics.
- Ecological education: understanding the evolution from matter to plants to animals, their inter-relationships and how they are in harmony and how to interact with and live with them in a harmonious manner. Understanding natural law.
Pedagogy/Process of Education
There are realities in existence and the meanings & understanding of these realities reside in the teacher/guru. Since words are the most potent means of communication, they are used to provide direction to the pupils imagination.
Education thus, is the process of transferring this understanding or right values (sanskar) from the teacher to the student enabling the student to have these impressions of reality & live accordingly.
Our process of education has the following characteristics:
1. Addresses the ‘self ‘ directly
- Addresses inquisitiveness and exploration by each child, since the innate need for every human is to know – in place of mere memorization and rote learning
- Respect: Respects the freedom of imagination and freedom of action in the child allowing for their creative thinking & expressions (कल्पनाशीलता, कर्मस्वतंत्रता)
- Critical thinking: Enables students to scrutinize & evaluate using their own freedom of imagination and decide between right & wrong, true & false in their own right.
2. Recognizes human relationship
- Based on sound teacher-student relationship – between one who knows and one who wants to know: as against it being a ‘job’ alone.
- Based on values & evaluation, as against fear and enticement. (punishment and rewards)
- Fosters cooperation and mutual fulfillment with other children/ humans – in place of seeing them as opponents to compete against.
- Promotes excellence – everyone can be excellent. As against specialty & competition.
3. Integrated approach based on reality
- Subjects taught in an integrated manner – as the inter-related fabric of the cosmos, to human life on this planet and our roles as individuals, in families, society, nation-state etc – as against fragmented teaching leading only to specialization
- Addresses all dimensions of human living: realization, thought, behavior and occupation – as against the current goal of education largely for an occupation, or ‘to make a living’
- Based on the reality of Coexistence – of Existence being in harmony, that can be known – as against material-centrist chaos/instability based view or mysticism/god centrist views.
Outcomes of Education
The person that successfully completes such education is endowed with the following 5 qualities:
Has assurance, trust in oneself and his capabilities and knowledge
Respects excellence in the other human – recognition of who has worked for, or reached the common human goal
Has balance in his knowledge and personality – can live according to what he/she knows
Is sociable in behavior: pupils living does not cause an imbalance in society: lives within the confines of marital relationship and displays kindness in behavior with other humans, lives with human values.
Is self-sufficient in occupation: has the needed skills to work for his and families material prosperity
Supplementing the current educational content
Students don’t get complete knowledge in any single subject in the current Education system. Study of the following missing aspects need to be inculcated to make prevalent education complete: –
addition of Conscious aspect (jeevan) in Science.
addition of Mental-impressions (sanskar) in Psychology.
addition of Ethical utilization of the material and conscious aspects in Economics.
addition of Culture and Civics of Humaneness in Sociology.
addition of Conservation and Encouragement of Humaneness in Political-Science.
addition of Activity of Matter in Philosophy (Darshan-Shastra).
addition of Human being and Humaneness in History and Geography.
addition of Essential Reality in Literature.
Criterion for evaluation & acceptance
The human values via consciousness development or Chetna Vikas Mulya Shiksha (CVMS) fulfills the following criterion:
- Universal – naturally acceptable to the human & natural to existence/nature – is not be an imposition
- Logical & Verifiable – Appeals to human reasoning and intuitively & experientially verifiable
- Livable: comes in living – improves quality of understanding and living and leads to harmony with humans and nature
- चेतना विकास मूल्य शिक्षा पाठ्यक्रम – by A Nagraj
- शिक्षा नीति का लघु प्रस्ताव – by A Nagraj
- student article: चेतना विकास मूल्य शिक्षा- एक परिचय