Thursday, 9 January 2014

The Bane of Education

Now I know that this is a worn out issue and everyone is tired of listening and reading about the state of education in India. However, I’m still going to rant about it because I’ve just about had it with trying to remember dates and Acts of the Constitution and the number of internet users who are active on social networking sites. It has come to the point where it’s probably screwing around with my mind because there seems to be a reference of study material in almost every third sentence I utter!

What is the point of learning for the sake of learning?

And what is the point of learning something that has no practical application?

And what is the purpose of learning something that one can possibly have no interest in?

These are some of the questions that swirled around in my head as I attempted to relax after the completion of my exams just a few hours ago.

I’ve often wondered why nobody ever taught us how to calculate taxes, how to survive in hostile conditions, how to defend ourselves in times of danger, how to judge what was morally correct, how to apply logic, how to understand theories and their application, how to give back to the society and how to live in peace with nature.

Basic life skills do not seem to be taught at all. Even at the graduation and post-graduation level, I’ve noticed people studying only subjects that are necessary to get them a job. I’ve seen many a talent go to waste because their passions do not coincide with the amount of money they hope to earn. We do not even have the concept of doing something because one wishes to do so. Study something because of genuine interest. It is just about money. It is always about money. And the education industry today endorses it by ensuring job placements and attractive salary options rather than good education.

Although I understand the need for education, I sometimes really feel that,
‘We Don’t Need No Education.’

Here is a poem that I’d written a long time ago about the condition of education as I saw it.

A Student’s Burden

As I go a passing by,
I see some students trudging by,
With bag loads full of studying books,
People giving them pitying looks;
Off they go to school.

Small kids & big ones alike,
Look like they’re speared on a pike,
Schools turning out robots by the ton,
Aw! Come on, when will they learn
The stark reality.

The education system is skewed,
With the kids’ language turning lewd,
Universities turning to dust,
The students' brains rotting with rust,
What is our future?

With money running through the veins,
And students taking many pains;
The quest for knowledge now has ended,
Its great fort now undefended,
Is falling down in ruins.

                                            -  Brendan R. Dabhi