What is the meaning of “the great teacher”? The ordinary teacher only indoctrinates you, he gives you information. In the school, college, the university, that’s what the teachers go on doing: they simply give you information, they feed you knowledge. Their whole function is to transfer knowledge from the older generation to the newer generation. They function as mediators between the going generation and the coming generation. They are agents of the past.
That’s why your whole education system is always orthodox, conventional, conformist. It is never revolutionary. That’s why revolution has not happened up to now, because revolution can happen only through education, only through right education. And your education is wrong education; it is mis-education.
Why is it wrong? It is wrong because it perpetuates the past against the future. It is wrong because it perpetuates the dead against the living. It is wrong because it goes on molding small children into patterns that their fathers and forefathers have decided. It is wrong because these children will not be living in the same world in which their fathers and forefathers had lived, so they will always be misfits. They are prepared for something, for some world, which exists no more.
Our whole system of education is stupid. It prepares you for a world which is no more in existence and it does not prepare you for a world which is coming, arising, which is dawning – so you will remain a misfit. You will never be able to live rightly. If you follow your education you will feel yourself out of date. If you follow the new world that is happening, then your education will not be of any help in it. You will be almost uneducated, and that hurts the ego.
The ego does not want to accept the fact that “I am uneducated.” The ego always wants to be somebody special. That’s why people go on bragging about their education, how many degrees they have. People enjoy degrees, certificates, diplomas very much; they are always exhibiting them. Why? because the ego wants to be somebody special, and your education makes you special. You are a doctor, you are an engineer, a scientist, this and that. If you have no education you are simply a human being; you don’t have any adjectives, you don’t have any specialities with you. So people decide finally to cling to their education.
Clinging to the education is, in an indirect way, clinging to the past, and to cling to the past is to live a ghostly existence. You will never belong to this earth, you will never belong to the present. That you can sec. The more educated a person is, the less relevant he is to the times he lives in. He is very competent about the past, he is very competent about all that has been; but he is incapable of living herenow, and he is utterly incapable of penetrating into the future. He cannot be an inquirer, he cannot investigate. He becomes a believer. The teachers are agents, political agents, of the past – poisoning the future.
Then who is the great teacher? The great teacher is not in the service of the past. The great teacher is in the service of the future. The great teacher is in the service of the new, not of the old; that is the difference to be remembered.