Chapter 1: Teacher, Society and Revolution
I would like to share with you a few things I see about teachers and the society. Perhaps what I will say may not be in accordance with how you think. Perhaps, what I will say may views may be against the views held traditionally regarding what education is all about. I am neither an educationist nor a sociologist. Hence I consider myself fortunate talking about some of the fundamental aspects of education and society.
The possibility of any truth about education dawning on educationists should be taken as almost nil. They have been thinking for the last five thousand years, but the present condition of education, its structure, and the type of man that is produced, is so totally wrong that it is natural that only unhealthy and confused leaders are born out of it all. The thinking that is done by the sociologists is also sick and unhealthy; otherwise human beings, their life and their thinking, would have been quite different. Since I am neither an educationist nor a sociologist, it is possible that I can tell you things which can be seen only by looking at the problems directly.
For those to whom the scriptures are important, the solutions become more important than the problems. Since I do not know the theory of education I can talk directly about the problems.
The very first thing I would like to say is that the present relationship between the teacher and the society has proved dangerous. What is that relationship? The relationship is that the teacher is a slave and the society is the master or the owner. What work does the society ask from the teacher? Society wants the teacher to inculcate the old jealousies, old enmities and old thoughts coming down from the past thousands of years into the minds of young children. Those old people, who are as good as dead or dying, want to bequeath, pass on, such things through the teacher into the minds of new generations. It is very surprising that the society demands this type of work from the teacher and the teacher continues to do such work.
This is a great disgrace for the teachers. The disgrace is that the diseases from which the past century suffered are passed on to the current century, through the teacher, as needed by the society. This is needed because the old structure, the vested interests connected with that structure, and the blind beliefs established in that structure, do not want to die. They want to continue to live within the society.
Because of the job done by the teacher, he is respected. Without flattering the teacher and without respecting the teacher, it is not possible to ask for this work from him. That is why it is said that the teacher is a guru, respectable, and his advice must be listened to. Why? Because the society wants to bequeath its whole pattern of beliefs to its children through the teacher.
The Hindu father wants to make his son a Hindu, and a Mohammedan father wants to make his son a Mohammedan before he dies. The Hindu father also wants to bequeath to his children the dispute with the Mohammedans. Who will do this? The teacher will do it. The old generation wants to impose its blind beliefs on the new generation. Its scriptures, its priests and everything else is to be imposed. It gets this work done through the teacher, but what is the result?