Chapter 7: Total Education
In New York, thirty per cent of people cannot sleep at night without taking sleeping pills. And the scientific investigations and researches there say that within fifty years not a single man there will be able to sleep without taking sleeping pills. Are these the symptoms of a progressing man? And what to say about New York even Bombay will not stay behind for too long. We are also standing shoulder to shoulder in this progress, in this race; India will not stay behind. India, which has been the world teacher in every field, will not stop before becoming the world teacher in madness as well. We cannot avoid it; we are moving fast in this direction. Our leaders are making every effort so that we are not left behind.
The black shadow of mental tension and restlessness that has descended on the West what is the reason for its birth? The people who have tried to make the West educated during the past three hundred years, they are the good people with good intentions whose hands are behind it. Perhaps they did not know about the total nature of life; perhaps they had the notion that man will become happy if his intellect alone can be developed. Certainly, intellectuality should grow, intellect should grow, but in proportion to all the limbs of life, in balance. It should grow hand-in-hand with health, with heart, with being. If it grows alone, it is bound to create danger.
Intellect has no heart. The life, the world created by intellect will also be heartless. Intellect has mathematics, not love. Intellect has calculations and statistics, not feelings. Intellect thinks in terms of figures and logic life reaches beyond logic and figures and mathematics.
Life is very mysterious; no mathematics is able to explain it. No figures, no statistics are able to solve life. But intellect does not accept the existence of any mystery; intellect thinks everything is simple and straight like two plus two making four. It is this non-mysterious, heartless approach of intellect towards life which has given life a mechanicalness. Every day man goes on becoming more and more machine like. But when a man becomes like a machine, we call him efficient, skilled.
A machine is always more efficient than man. And if our emphasis remains only on the efficiency of the man, one day man will become efficient like machines but will have lost his soul. Man commits mistakes, machines don’t. We are trying for a man who does not commit mistakes, who is absolutely efficient, who moves on the unfaltering lines of mathematics.
Moving on the unfaltering lines of mathematics is like a train running on the railway tracks. But the rivers of life do not run on tracks, they run on unknown, unfamiliar paths. The river of life has a freedom which cannot be contained in the fixed structures of intellect but this is what we have been trying to do till today.