What exactly is education today? Can we say that accumulating degrees in various streams is education? Are all educated people learned people? Does education today provide the quality and skill which is needed to lead a worthwhile life? Well, I for one feel that people in the present-day generation are highly educated, yet we cannot call them all learned. Only a small chunk of the mass understands the real meaning of education and learning today. People are amassing degree after degree in the zest of becoming more prosperous and more affluent. Nobody is trying to collect compassion, girth, and contentment to improve upon the quality of life. Is life so baseless that we can use it to manage and increase our wealth? Should it not be vice versa instead? Should we rather not use all that we possess to make our life livelier and more meaningful? Today children have forgotten what real happiness is. They are in a surreal world where their childhood is a fairy-tale as their parents are burying them in luxury and not teaching them to face the harsh reality of the world outside.
Will the kind of education the children are getting today really teach them the atrocities as well as the hurdles and carnage one faces in the big dangerous world? Life’s lessons cannot be learned by education and education alone. Knowledge is to give a direction to life yet; the direction today is not at all complete. Today we do not have an education which can teach the real-life situation. Will our masses be able to face a situation of war or even hunger, famine or even a natural catastrophe? I believe not, because we are making our children too used to a cake walk. The moment dire circumstances face them they will not have the audacity to confront them; instead, they will succumb to the pressure and become feeble. Is it the right kind of upbringing and education?
Even in the days of yore, the people were prepared for each situation they were to face. The primitive people during the stone ages were not educated; nevertheless, they were ready to fight or flight their modus operandi. They were always on the run dodging the predators in the wild and also escaping the natural disasters. Our ancestors also were putting in long, stressful hours and combating all the obstacles they faced. So, by observing the past and the lives of our forefathers, we should at least prepare our generations today to tackle the situations they are confronted by today. Life may not always be according to our perception. They should be ready to embrace the challenges with a smile. That is only possible if the education they receive is not all about grades and worthless competition. Education should rather prepare the children today for what they have to encounter daily.
By Shilpi Sharma
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