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Indian Concept of Education Notes PDF Free Download
What is Education
To understand an abstract concept like education, one is required to explicate its meaning or nature from the point of view of the functions such concepts perform or the contexts in which such concepts are appropriately used.
But there is another sense also in which people (probably wrongly) see education as an instrument by application of which certain individual or social changes are brought about.
Interpreted in the latter sense, the economist would see education as a commodity in which it is profitable for the community to invest.
Sociologists would tell people that education is a socializing force atid teachers are the socializing agency in the community.
Similarly, a psychiatrist would say that the role of education, and hence of teachers, would be to maintain the rental health of children.
But you will agree that education is different from being a commodity, real estate, type of social work, or psychiatry.
Education is what it is and of Education not the way it is differently interpreted.
Education is there in all of the above and each one is linked to the process of education, yet it lies above all these.
We talk of educating children, teaching or instructing them; socializing or developing or converting them into good citizens or good human beings.
In all these expressions definitely, something that we call education is involved. But what exactly is that a process or a product, is not very clear.
If it is a process, how does it occur or what are its conditions? And if it is a product, what does it look like? How can one define that product?
There are such and many more questions, which occur to us when we talk about understanding education.
In this unit, an attempt has been made to seek answers to such questions in order to arrive at a deeper understanding of education, Etymologically, the word “Education” is derived from the Latin words “Educare” and “educere”.
Educare refers to “to bring up or “to nourish”, whereas the word ‘educate” means “to bring forth” or “to draG out”.
Some others believe that the word has been derived from another Latin word “educated” which has two components. “E implies a movement from inward to outward and “duco” refers to developing or progressing.
An analysis of these words reveals that education aims at providing a learner or a child a nourishing environment to bring out and develop the latent potentiality hidden inside him.
In India, the concept of education is traced back to the “Gurukula Parampara” which developed in ancient times.
Basically, a Guru-Shishya or Teacher-Pupil tradition emphasized the education of the latter in ancient times.
Two prominent words in Sanskrit namely, “Shiksha” and “Vidya” also stand out as equivalents of the term 8 “Education”.
The former has been derived from the root word “Shas” meaning “to discipline” or “to control”.
The latter word is derived from the root word “Vid” which Concept and Meaning mean “to know”.
Therefore, ancient Indian education stressed emphasis on two of Education major aspects of the education of an individual. These are discipline and knowledge.
A learner must be disciplined and develop a curiosity to acquire new knowledge to lead a fruitful life.
Education of a human being is, perhaps, the most cherished goal of any human civilization that ever existed or is yet to come in this world.
Therefore, philosophers, educationists, and great thinkers have tried their best to define education.
But in most of these definitions, one would find the mark in their conceptions of reality, values, and belief systems.
Although such definitions might reflect the contemporary societal systems. no single definition has been found so far that satisfies everyone.
The search for a universal definition of education still continues. However, the definitions of education given by great philosophers and educationists can broadly be categorized into three major trends.
They are discussed in the following paragraphs. Education as a Spiritual Pursuit The stress on education as a spiritual pursuit is basically an Indian concept.
Right from the Vedic period, Indian spiritual thinkers have been propagating education as a means of achieving spiritual goals.
According to the Upanishads, “Education is that whose end product is salvation” and Adi Shankaracharya said “Education is the realization of the self’.
The Rigveda says, “Education is something which makes a man self-reliant and selfless”. Vivekanand says, “Education is the manifestation of divine perfection already existing in man”.
All these definitions underline the presupposition that human beings are the creation of God.
It is education whose role is to bring out the divinity already existing in man and help him to realize himself as well as lead him to achieve salvation.
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