There is a lot of real and unreal that has become a part of what we call education in today’s context. There are facts that exist on paper but are otherwise non-existent, there are stories of unbelievable success that go unrecorded, truths that are whispered and then forgotten, false triumphs that remain embedded in files… education appears like a mesh of intrigue that shows no sign of getting clearer very soon. So, is education real… or is it a fiction?
In this column we’ll be looking at how imaginative tales and hard-core facts together make up what is taken to be education. For instance, how literate are the literate really? Or, do our books really educate? Or, are we fast becoming walking museums of certificates and degrees? There are questions that exist and not all are answered… not all are allowed to even exist. Yes, uncomfortable questions are pushed into oblivion by scheming minds. Those poor queries don’t even have the honour to fade away gently into the night!
It appears that we, as a people and as a Nation, have forgotten the art of searching for the reality that lurks somewhere between the lines. No, this reality isn’t lurking there out of fear of reprisal, nor is it there because it is afraid to face expected opposition from the dons and the knife-wielding education shops… they are there because we have never wanted them to come out and breathe freely. It is rightly said that we tend to create the very world that we conceive in our minds. So the reality is that the culprit isn’t out there, it is right here in our own minds. It exists because we accept it and we don’t even try to wish it away. It is out thoughts that give these falsities an existence… and makes them stronger.
Yet, even in the face of such lawless manoeuvres, good education does exist. This is also reported, lauded, and allowed to replicate. However, such examples are rare and far between. The frequency of such institutions, concepts, students, and teachers is increasing… though we are still far from the danger zone. These places and people seem so much like a good story in a best-seller… and yet this is the truth. The real fiction, shall we say?
Education then begins from our thoughts… think, and it shall be! It is up to us to let the quality education that we imagine become the truth that we experience.
Written on 11 July 2012
Featured image credit: Scoop