NEP 2020: Education for Social Change

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What do we live and fight for? If we are educated just to distinguish ourselves, to get a better job, to be more competent, to have greater authority over others, then our lives will be superficial and empty.

Although there is a higher and broader meaning to life, of what value is our education if we never discover it? We may be highly skilled, but if we are without deep integration of thought and feeling, our lives are incomplete, contradictory and torn with many fears; and until education nurtures an integrated view of life, it has little meaning. In our present civilization, we have divided life into so many compartments that education has very little meaning, except in learning a particular technique or trade.

Instead of awakening the integrated vision of an individual, education encourages him to conform to an established pattern and thus hinders his process of self-realization. Education should work towards the integration of these separate entities – for without integration, life becomes a series of conflicts and heartaches.

What value does it have to be trained as a lawyer if litigation is perpetuated? Of what value is knowledge if we continue in our confusion? How important is technical and industrial capacity if we use it to destroy each other? What is the purpose of our existence if it leads to ferocity and utter misery?

Although we may have money or be able to earn it, although we have our material pleasures, we are inherently unhappy. We have all been trained by upbringing and environment to seek personal gratification and fight for ourselves. Education is not just about training the mind.

Training is a source of efficiency, but it does not bring plenitude. A mind that has simply been formed is an appendage of the past, and such a mind can never discover the new. For most of us, the meaning of life as a whole is not of primary importance, and our education emphasizes secondary values, making us merely proficient in one branch of knowledge.

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