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CHAPTER - 2 2.

INTRODUCTION
2.1. CONCEPT OF GURUKULA A gurukul (Sanskrit guru "teacher" or "master"; kul domain, from kula, "extended family") is in India a type of school, residential in nature, with shishyas living in proximity to the guru, often within the same house !"# In a gurukul, shishyas reside together as e$uals, irrespective of their social standing, learn from the guru and help the guru in his day%to%day life, including the carrying out of mundane chores such as washing clothes, cooking, etc &he guru%shishya parampara is a hallowed tradition in 'induism (ther religious groups in India have adapted it into different forms that fall within their religious ideology and framework such as )ainism, *uddhism, and Sikhism &ypically, a guru does not receive fees from a shishyas studying with him At the end of his studies, a shishya offers the guru dakshina +efore leaving the ashram &he gurudakshina is a traditional gesture of acknowledgment, respect and thanks, which may +e monetary, +ut may also +e a special task the teacher wants the student to accomplish *y the colonial era the gurukul system was almost dead in India excepting in a few remote regions An exception was ,erala where the warrior -air clan and their own military gurukulas called ,alaris !citation needed# .ecently, several gurukulas have +egun, +oth driven +y monetary gain and +y a desire to uphold the traditions /xamples of these new schools are Ananda 0arga 1urukula esta+lished +y Ananda 0arga in "223 at Anandanagar (India) with a network of +ranches in scores of countries around the world !4# It is not a religious school in 'indu tradition +ut rather a secular academic institution +ased on universal spiritual principles 5ivekananda 6ollege near 0adurai is an -AA6 %accredited 7A8 grade autonomous college that is run under a 1urukula system !9#

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&here are many 5edic 1urukulas in modern India which follow ancient tradition 1overnment of India provides financial and other help to 5edic teachers who esta+lish such 5edic gurukulas for imparting 5edic education without asking for any fees from the students ; the leading government institution offering such assistance is S:ndipani in ;<<ain, named after the guru of ,rishna, which also helps 5edic gurukulas in preparing students for examinations held +y recogni=ed Sanskrit universities !citation >act,April 433? ) In India and other parts of the world, gurukul and centers, head +ranch at 1urukul .a<kot In Andhra Aradesh, the first attempt of expanding the 1urukul &radition was made at Shree Swaminarayan 1urukul 'ydera+ad +y Sadguru Shri Bevprasaddas<i Swami In 0ayapur (Cest *engal, India) an IS,6(- gurukul pro<ect, which has +een in operation since the D38s, is re<uvenating the ancient gurukul system and providing students with a system of traditional education and values (thers examples of !www <<kgurukulam org# 1urukula institutsE !www arshayoga org# and
!@# needed#

(Another

is +ecoming synonym for Shree

Swaminarayan 1urukul, a socio%spiritual, non profit organi=ation with over "@ +ranches

Different t !e" #f Gurukul" in An$ient In%i&


Initially, the gurukul system had the advantage of +eing egalitarian and fair &he teacher there o+served the children8s attitude, aptitude and a+ility, and educated them accordingly As this was done without the interference from any external source (parents can +e very pushy F), the educators were a+le to match the individual8s temperament with the trade they learned Gater, however, this was corrupted and educators were no longer independent % rather, they were paid to teach a particular skill to a particular group of students (Sound

familiar H) I am not <ust making this up either % there is written evidence for this % namely in the 0aha*harata At the time when Brona and Brupada were students, the system was still fair and open Arinces and paupers went to the same 1urukul to learn life skills &here, different children learned different skills and the gurukul was a+le to develop the skills of a particular child to its max potential As a result, a +rahmin, was taught Banurveda and +ecame highly skilled in the martial arts Impressed +y his skills, a prince sought his friendship, as he knew he would need such men in his army Sadly, he forgot his friendship and an animosity took root which culminated in the great *harat war In the same generation, from an open system that Brona attended, he came to run a gurukul that was elitist and exclusive 'e was paid to teach the ,uru princes and hence refused to teach any other student, no matter how talented &he fact that Akalaya sought Brona8s tutelage, shows the system was changing so fast, most people could not comprehend that education could +e restricted in this way F /ducation was supposed to +e open to all and this was a rare, new experiment in education where+y a teacher was "paid" to teach a specified group of students only FFF Aarashurama8s gurukul was also elitist and hence flawed *y +eing totally closed, and yet so well reputed, it encouraged sincere seekers to twist the truth or, lie, in order to get in ,arna8s entry was surely not the first, and I am sure not the last into this them >rom an egalitarian 1urukul of Sandipani, came Gord ,rishna and Sudama &heirs was a friendship that lasted the test of time *hagvad 1ina first recitation >rom the 1urukul of Aarshuram, came ,arna, who sacrificed everything, including ethics, at the alter of his misplaced idea of "friendship" 'e was una+le to save himself with the knowledge gained at his 1urukul, as it was gained with deceit It cost him his life F ,rishna8s knowledge culminated in the great &his great scripture still continues to inspire, so many centuries after its

>rom the 1urukul of Brona, came the great war, annihilating an empire as old as time F 'arvest of hate is +itter indeed, all those connected with this 1urukul, died a painful, acrimonious death Iou have to +e careful how you are educated, who is educating you and with what motives in their mind (ur Aurans testify as to what can happen if we are not careful F

2.1. EDUCATION IN INDIA TODA' /ducation in India has always +een regarded as one of the +asic inputs in human resource development In the ancient days, the Gurukul system of education was prevalent &he teacher was the Guru and the disciple was the Sishya &he disciples lived in the 1uru8s aashram during the course of their training and in turn offered their services to the ashram &his period of learning of, a+out "4 years, was considered as a great sacrifice or a penance &he 1uru identified the capa+ility of his Sishya and accordingly imparted knowledge &he sishyas learnt amidst the natural surroundings of the ashram, in open air, in close contact with nature &he ,ings sent their Arinces to 1urus for training on the art of using weaponry, vedas, music, art and physical forms of exercising J defence At the end of their training, the disciples thanked their 1urus with a gift in the form of a gurudakshina % which literally means "offerings to the 1uru" (ne of the most popular cultural institutions in India which still follows the Gurukul system is Shanthiniketan near 6alcutta which was esta+lished +y the great teacher, artist, philosopher and literary laureate Rabindranath Tagore Kalakshetra in 0adras, esta+lished +y the great dancer Rukmini Arundale too follows the 1urukul system &o%date, a teacher in India is regarded as a 1uru, a master in his discipline (ne of the most ancient universities of India is in Nalanda near Aatna >ounded in the Kth 6entury

AB, this great seat of learning flourished until the "4th century AB &he founder of *uddhism, Gautam Buddha and )ainism, Parsvanath Mahavir are +elieved to have visited -alanda &he 6hinese chronicler 'uen &sang spent many years here +oth as a student and as a teacher Nagarjuna, the *uddhist 0ahayana philosopher, crowded the portals of -alanda ;niversity innaga, the logician and harma!ala, the *rahmin scholar taught here At one point of time a+out 4333 teachers and "3,333 students *esides religious texts, students in the ancient universities learnt a+out Ayurveda (0edicine), Ganitha (0athematics), Arthashastra (Aolitical science), "yothisha (Astrology), #yakarna (1rammar), Shil!athana #idya (Art and 6rafts), and Adyatma #idya (Ahilosophy)

India is committed to providing +asic education to its citi=ens, the framework of which is defined in the National Policy on $ducation /lementary education is now compulsory in India At the time of Independence only "@L of India8s population was literate &oday, fifty years later, the num+er of literates have increased +y five fold /mphasis has +een on educating the rural population and the socially J financially +ackward communities in the country %!eration Blackboard is a pro<ect aimed at increasing the literacy rate +y providing the +asic amenities re$uired +y schools to educate children and adults &here are various scholarships offered +y the government to encourage education Aopular among the school going children are the National Talent Scholarshi! $&ams, Scholarshi!s 'or Talented (hildren 'rom Rural Areas, and the "a)aharlal Nehru *ello)shi! &he government has +een encouraging adult education over the last two decades &he +ndira Gandhi National %!en ,niversity and the Annamalai ,niversity are among the many which offer distance education Among the special programmes for eradication of literacy among adults are those conducted +y the Mass Programme o' *unctional -iteracy, Rural *unctioning -iteracy Programme, Shramik #idya!eeth and the National +nstitute o' Adult $ducation &echnical education in India is regarded as one of the +est in the world /very year, India churns out a good num+er of engineers Arimere among the training institutes offering technical education are the +ndian +nstitute o' Technology, +ndian +nstitute o' Science, Regional $ngineering (olleges, School o' Planning . Architecture, and the +nternational (entre 'or Science . Technology Among the various schemes which encourage technical education are the Rajiv Gandhi National +nstitute 'or (om!uter . Allied Schemes , ,niversity Grants (ommission Schemes, and schemes at National +nstitute o' *oundry . *orge Technology At present there are a+out "93 schemes in the e!artment o' $ducation (ut of these "? are

centrally sponsored Aopular among them +eing %!eration Blackboard, Mid/ ay/Meal scheme, Teacher $ducation, #ocation $ducation and Post literacy . (ontinuing $ducation M >or the year "22M%"22D the total plan outlay with the /ducation Bepartment was .s 99,?4D

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(.2.) - Taittirya Upaniat The portrayed scriptures Control sacrifice facets in and of study Quality the of Do Life the and are beautifully according them. to Be

this

Upaniat.

duties

scriptures organs fires and used

teach

honest in thought, speech and action. Live in austere life. the " physical the three internal in the and organs. !gnihotra Da%sinagu&, aintainaning

#$arhapatya,

!havaniya

performing !gnihotra sacrifice everyday. Treat the guests 'ith great respects. Live li%e a normal human being. (ave children to continue family line. Satyavca, of the family of Rththara thin%s that truth alone is enough. pauruii feels that one should concentrate on austerities. !ccording to Nka and Maudglya, only 'ay to get bliss is through studying and teaching the scriptures. )t is stated that *elf+%no'ledge can give liberation that can be attained by cittauddhi 'hich can be got by %arma properly done #%arma yoga&. In Taittirya Upaniat Part I, Chapter IX, is said: Verse 1, it

\t< c SvaXyayvcne c, sTy< c SvaXyayvcne c, tp SvaXyayvcne c, dm SvaXyayvcne c, zm SvaXyayvcne

c, AGNy SvaXyayvcne c, Aihae< c SvaXyayvcne c, AitwyZc SvaXyayvcne c, manu < c SvaXyayvcne c, !a c SvaXyayvcne c , !n SvaXyayvcne c, !ait SvaXyayvcne c, sTyimit sTyvca "aw#t"$, tp %it tpaeinTy$ pa&'izi($) SvaXyayvcne *veit na+ae ma&d,-y$, ti. tpSti/ tp$) (tEi %p:1 .9 .1)
ta ca svdhyyapravacane ca| satya ca svdhyyapravacane

ca| tapaca svdhyyapravacane ca|damaca svdhyyapravacane ca| amaca svdhyyapravacane ca|agnyaca svdhyyapravacane ca| agnihotra ca svdhyyapravacane ca| atithayaca svdhyyapravacane ca|mnua ca svdhyyapravacane ca|praj ca svdhyyapravacane ca| prajanaca ca svdhyyapravacane ca| prajtica svdhyyapravacane ca|satyamiti satyavac rthtara|tapa iti taponitya pauruii|svdhyyapravacane eveti nko maudgalya| taddhi tapastaddhi tapa Taitti up: 1 .9. 1)
In Taittirya Upaniad Part I, Chapter XI, 4, it is said: Verse 1, 2, 3,

vedmnU0yacayae12NtevaisnmnuzaiSt, sTy< vd, 3m4 c", SvaXyayaNma md$, Aacaya1y iy< 3nma5Ty !atNtu< ma 6yv07eTs#$, sTya8 midt6ym9, 3ma18 midt6ym9,9 +:z;a8 midt6ym9, <=Ty& n midt6ym9, SvaXyayvcna>ya< n midt6ym) #tEi %p, 1 .11. 1)

Vedamancycryo'ntevsinamanusti| satya vada| dharma cara| svdhyynm pramada|cryya priya dhanamh tya pra!tantu m vyavacchets| satynna pramaditavyam| dharmnna pramaditavyam|"ua#nna pramaditavyam| $htyai na pramaditavyam| svdhyyapravacan$hy na pramaditavyam . %Taitti up, - .--. -&
The teacher first teaches the .edas to his disciple and then gives the follo'ing instruction, !l'ays spea% the truth /erform according the to your laid understanding do'n by the and %no'ledge. 0ever duties scriptures.

neglect studying the scriptures. $ive your teacher things he needs and li%es #'hen your teacher so directs, marry and raise a family&. *ee that there is no brea% in the family line. 0ever deviate from truth. 0ever neglect doing the things the scriptures prescribe. Don1t neglect doing 'hat is needed for self+defence, and don1t neglect doing 'hat is good for you. 2nce again, don1t neglect reading the scriptures and teaching them to others #carry out these duties as best you can.&

devipt?+aya1>ya< n midt6ym9, mat?devae <v, ipt?devae <v, Aacay1devae <v, Aitiwdevae <v, yaNynv@ain +ma1iA tain seivt6yain, nae %t"aiA, yaNySma+< suci"tain, tin TvyaepaSyin. #tEi %p, 1 .11 . 2) nae %t"aiA, ye +e caSm0Beya<Csae DaEAa$, te a< Tvya22snen Fist6ym9, G.ya deym9, AG.ya2deym9, iGya

deym9, iHya deym9, i<ya deym9, s<ivda deym9, Aw yid te +m1ivici+Tsa va v?Iivici+Tsa va Syat9 )
#tEi

%p, 1 .11 .3)

ye t DaEAa$ s<miz1n$, yuJa AayuJa$, A;=Ka 3m1+ama$ Syu$, ywa te t vte1"n9, twa t vte1wa$, Awa>yLyate u, ye t DaEAa$ s<miz1n$, yuJa AayuJa$, A;=Ka 3m1+ama$ Syu$, ywa te te u vte1"n9, twa te u vte1wa$, * Aadez$, * Mpdez$, * a vedaepin t9, *tdnuzasnm9, *vmupaist6ym9, *vmu c&tNpaSym9 . #tEi %p, 1 .11 . 4)
&evapit "ry$hy na pramaditavyam| mt devo $hava| pit devo $hava| cryadevo $hava| atithidevo $hava| ynyanavadyni "arm'i tni sevitavyni| no itar'i ynyasm"a sucaritni| tani tvayopsyni. %Taitti up, - .--.3& (o itar'i| ye "e csmacchrey)so$rhma'|te tvay''sanena pravasitavyam| raddhay deyam| araddhay'deyam| riy deyam| hriy deyam| $hiy deyam| savid deyam| atha yadi te "armavici"its va v ttavici"its v syt . %Taitti up, - .--.4&

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*e tatra $rhma' sammarina| yu"t yu"t| a#" dharma"m syu| yath te tatra varteran| tath tatra varteth| ath$hy"hyteu| ye tatra $rhma' samarina| yu"ta yu"t| a#" dharma"m syu| yath te teu varteran| tath teu varteth| ea dea| ea upadea| e vedopaniat| etadanusanam| evamupsitavyam| evamu caitadupsyam. %Taitti up, - .--.5&
Do not neglect your duties to the gods and the ancestors. Treat your mother as $od. Treat your father as $od. Treat your teacher as $od. Treat your guest as $od. Do only things no one can find fault 'ith, and avoid other things. !nything good 'e #your teachers& do, you should also do, but other things 'e do #that are not approved of by the scriptures& you should not do. )f there are brahmins superior to us, you should offer them your seat and thus, see to their comfort. 6hen you give anything to anyone, give it 'ith due respect. 0ever give anything 'ithout due respect. !nd 'hen you give something give it in the best manner possible. $ive 'ith humility and 'ith fear, lest you offend the person to 'hom you are giving. !nd give 'ith good'ill in your heart. )f you have any doubt in your mind about the propriety of 'hat you are doing, or the manner in 'hich you are doing it, then " if there are 'ho 'ise are brahmins there, 'ho are and devoted to their duties, 'ho are ready to do the right things selfless voluntarily, " follo' %ind straightfor'ard, !gain, if 'hatever they do. someone

7uestions the propriety of 'hat those people are doing, then " if there are 'ise brahmins there, 'ho are devoted to

""

their

duties,

'ho

are

ready

to

do

the

right

thing

voluntarily, 'ho are %ind straightfor'ard, and selfless " follo' 'hatever they do. This is the dictum, the advice8 and the message of the .edas. )t is the command of $od. This is the ideal. This is 'hat should govern your conduct. (.2.* - +hndo,ya Upaniat This %no' good the Upaniat good mainly gives of the us ho' a But person that soon should is not ac7uire good 7ualities. 9irst and foremost, a person should 7ualities Then *:ma. enough. (e should also 'orship the *:ma along 'ith those 7ualities. those 7ualities 'ill manifest themselves in him and they 'ill eventually become a great source of satisfaction too. In +hndo,ya Upaniat it is said: Chapter VII, Section 18, erse 1,

yda v& mnute2w iv!anait namTva iv!anait mTv&v iv!anait mitSTvev ivi!Oaist6yeit mit< <,vae ivi!Oas %it #7a. %p, 7
.18 .1& *ad vai manute'tha vi!nti nmatv vi!nti matvaiva vi!nti matistveva vi!i!-sitvyeti mati $ha,avo vi!i!-sa iti ||.|| ity/daa "han0a%Chan! up, ;.-<.-&
*anat%um:ra said, =6hen a person learns to thin% 'ell, then he can %no' deeply. 6ithout thin%ing 'ell, one cannot %no' deeply. 2ne %no's for certain 'hen one thin%s deeply. But one must 'ant to %no' ho' to thin% 'ell. 0:rada replied. =*ir, ) 'ant to %no' ho' to thin% 'ell. In +hndo,ya Upaniat it is said: Chapter VII, Section 1", erse 1,

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yda v& G.aTyw mnute naG.Nmnute G.dev mnute G.a Tvev ivi!Oaist6yeit G.a< <,vae ivi!Oas %it. #7a. %p, 7 .19 .1&
*ad vai raddhtyatha manute nraddhanmanute raddhadeva manute raddh tveva vi!i!-asitavyeti raddh $ha,avo vi!i!-sa iti. %Chan! up, ;.->.-&
*anat%um:ra said, =6hen a person has respect #for 'hat he hears&, then he gives due thought to it. 6ithout this respect he attaches no importance to 'hat he hears. 2ne thin%s deeply over something that one respects. But one must try to attain this respect, 0:rada replies, =*ir, ) 'ant to have this respect. In +hndo,ya Upaniat Chapter VII, Section 2#, is said: erse 1, it

yda v& iniStPTyw G.ait nainiStPQB.ait iniStPOev G.ait inPa Tvev ivi!Oaist6yeit inPa< <,vae ivi!Oas %it. #7a. %p, 7 .2
.1& *ad vai nisti/hatyatha raddhti nnisti/ha-chraddhti nisti/ha!-eva raddhti ni/h tveva vi!i!-asitavyeti ni/h $ha,avo vi!i!-sa iti. %Chan! up, ;.3?.-&
*anat%um:ra, =6hen a person is steady and devoted to his teacher, then he has respect. 6ithout being steady, one cannot genuine have respect. and 2ne has steadiness But one 0:rada 'hen one has this respect devotion. must see%

steadiness 'ith great earnestness. see% this steadiness.1

replied, =)

"9

In +hndo,ya Upaniat it is said:

Chapter VII, Section 21,

erse 1,

yda vE !"aeTy# iniStPit na!$Tva iniStPit !$TvEv iniStPit !$itSTvev ivi%&ai't(yeit !$it) *+vae ivi%&a' ,it. #7a. %p, 7 . 21 .1&
*ad vai "arotyatha nisti/ht n" tv nisti/hati " tvaiva nisti/hati " tistveva vi!i!-sitavyeti " ti $ha,avo vi!i!-sa iti. %Chan! up, ;.3-.-&
*anat%um:r said, =6hen a person %eeps doing his duty, he becomes have steady. )f one 2ne does not do one1s duty, by one cannot steadiness. attains steadiness doing

one1s duty. But one should try to %no' 'hat duty means.1 0:rada replied ) 'ant to %no' about duty.

)rom *ikipedia+ the free encyclopedia


I" Gurukul& E%u$&ti#n +uit&,le F#r In%i&Br , )amanadas, A few days ago, there was an article in the 'itavada, +y 0r 6haitanya 'a=arey, praising highly the 8gurukul system8 of education, condemning the *ritish system of education now prevalent in India, and attri+uting to the present system of education all the discredit, holding it responsi+le for all the ills of India 0r 'a=arey is of no conse$uence, +ut many prominent highly educated ignorants, like one of 5ice%6hancellors of an Indian ;niversity, also seem to hold similar views, so this article It can not +e gainsaid that the present educational system needs some changes, +ut certainly, it can not +e accepted that 8gurukul system8 is an answer

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I" e%u$&ti#n re"!#n"i,le f#r une.!l# .ent &he author thinks that the present system is responsi+le for unemployment, presuma+ly +ecause 8educated youths8 +ecome useless for manual la+our and white collar <o+s are not availa+le in plenty &he argument is not new At the time of 0ahatma )otirao Ahule, his father was advised +y his +rahmin 8divan<i8 to withdraw the child from school as the child will +e useless for agriculture &hanks to Gigit sahi+ and 1affar *eg 0unshi, who persuaded 1ovindrao, )oti+a8s father, against the advice and restarted the education of the child after waste of three years, and thus a ">ather of Social .evolution in India" was +orn &here is a whispering method of propagation of ideas in India In this method, you do not have to give a sermon or a lecture or write an article or make & 5 serial All you do is to casually whisper among your co%participants in any social, religious or political function It may +e casual meeting when you are on trip to market to get vegeta+les or attending some+ody8s marriage or a lecture in the hall or seeing a cinema in ganesh festival Iou casually mention your idea (nly thing it must +e done purposefully, and in strong terms &he fellow opposite usually agrees with you on these occasions If he does not seem to agree, you change the su+<ect *y this method, the ideas can +e planted in the minds of the gulli+le (ne such idea is, education +etter +e in mother tongue, that way it is easier to understand and retain, etc etc *ut their own children are sent to /nglish 6onvent schools In their houses, not only servants +ut also the cat and dogs and other pets are conversed with in /nglish (ther idea is 8+est is agriculture, medium is +usiness and worst is the service8 &he concerned advisers are of course sending their children to lucrative services &he said article seems to +e a part of such a campaign It may +e due to ignorance or may +e +y design Similar is this advice to masses +y these classes I have heard many people saying, what is the use of taking education when services are so scarce &his is wrong idea in the minds of 8masses8 rooted +y 8classes8 &he scarcity of <o+s should not deter the masses from o+taining the degrees &he mind gets developed and one can get the wisdom to differentiate +etween good and +ad (ne can make +est use of Information &echnology which can +e put

"K

to +est advantage of the pu+lic >or example, the situation is turning in such a way that, in near future, one can not +e, called a literate, if one does not know a+out computers Get us forget a+out computing in regional languages, with due apology to 6%Bac, you can not catch up with the world that way As it is, it appears that, the revolution of Internet has already +ypassed India8s +ahu<ans for want of knowledge of /nglish language /&" t0e 1riti"0 E%u$&ti#n #nl f#r .&king 1&,u"0any people think so 0ay +e it is true only in superficial sense (ne can not ignore the awakening and aspirations created +y 0issionaries in the minds of masses *ut what were choices availa+le to the *ritish that timeH Gord 0c6auley who was responsi+le for making the choice of 0odern /nglish /ducation for Indians, had only one alternative, i e to give traditional education of sanskrit and vernacular languages and +rahmanic sastras Cho would have +enefited there +y Chen we know that early +rahmins opposed the education of masses a+out secular education Could they have allowed the non%+rahmins to learn sastrasH In the reign of last Aeshava, daxina was given to all and sundry +rahmins *rahmins used to come from ,anchi, Srirampattam, ,um+hkonam, &an<awar, ,ashi, ,ano< and 0athura and flock together to create a crowd in Aoona, once num+ering sixty thousand at a time Ce also know that even after the end of Aeshawai, a very welcome event +y the masses, and specially the women of Aoona, *ritishers continued to please +rahmins, though with reduced amount, for sanskrit +ooks Chen there was demand for daxina +y other +rahmins for marathi +ooks, there was hue and cry from orthodox +rahmins 'owever, later half the amount was given to 0arathi +ooks also after a +ig struggle &hus +rahmins resisted against 0arathi to prevent lower classes from learning !Bhan<ay ,eer, "0ahatma Ahule", (0>) marathi, p 9? ff # Could they have allowed the non%+rahmins to get +enefit of *ritishers In any case, it was the good fortune of Indian masses, that modern education was decided to +e imparted to them +y Gord 0c6auley (therwise, there would have +een no spread of modern ideas and whatever little enlightenment we now see in masses would not have +een there &hey would have +een slaves of the +rahmins, who in the name religion controlled their minds -ow at least the S6s and S&s are out of their grip, and some (*6s also are out "M

of their fetters, though the ma<ority of (*6s are still slaves of +rahmins, in spite of all efforts +y the *ahu<an leaders like Ahule, Shahu, Am+edkar, Aeriyar, -arayan 1uru and many others like them &he elite wants to hide from the masses that, India had a dou+le slavery Slavery of masses +y +rahmins was the real slavery in micro level, experienced in every nook and corner of the country Slavery of *ritish was over the macro level and was not important to masses &hey never came in contact with those rulers &hey only came in contact with local rulers, who were +rahmins, no matter who ruled a+ove &hat is the reason south Indian leaders like Br A 5aradra<ulu -aydu said that *ritish Imperialism has enslaved our +odies only, +ut +rahmanism has enslaved our souls &he *ritish have taken away our wealth +ut as it has dominance over social and religious fields, +rahmanism has killed the feeling of self respect and freedom in the minds of non%+rahmins !0>%p 9"@# &his feeling was universal among the masses /0&t 2&" t0e e""en$e #f Gurukul E%u$&ti#n0r 'a=are seems to +e very fond of 1urukul education >irst thing gurukul was never open to the ma<ority of masses A+out ?K to 23 percent of population was outside the pale of 1urukuls (nly the "K percent population was +eing catered +y 1urukuls &hat too, only the +oys were admitted and not the girls, thus +ringing the total possi+le population to +e only a+out seven percent &here were no criteria for admission apart from the caste and whims and fancies of the teacher /xamples of denial of admission to very meritorious candidates on the +asis of caste are seen 1laring example is of /klavya -ot only the guru Bronacharya denied admission to /klavya, +ut demanded /klavya8s thum+ as gurudakshina for education -(& imparted +y him 0any people feel it is irony of fate and mockery of awards, that such a name is associated with highest sports awards in this country, without any protest from the sufferers of the system Second example is of ,arna, who got admission to Aarashurama8s class, which was

"D

exclusively reserved for the +rahmins, on false statement of caste *enefit of his knowledge, la+eled as unlawfully o+tained, was withdrawal when his caste +ecame known, which ultimately lead to his death /xample of Satyakama )a+ala is mentioned +y many orthodox people to erroneously show that education in ;panishadic times was open to low caste people &his is a wrong inference drawn from his story Satyakama was asked +y his guru his caste 'is mother sent a word to the guru that she did not know the exact father of the child as she had relations with many people &his frank statement, the guru declared, can only +e a statement of a son of a +rahmin So the admission to the gurukul was done on the +asis of +rahmin caste -ot only that, the test applied +y him, and his presumption of +rahmin caste, was derogatory to non% +rahmins, +ecause it was his +elief that only +rahmins could speak such a truth and non% +rahmins could not have uttered such truth /0&t 2ere t0e $riteri& #f "ele$ti#n #f te&$0er" in Gurukul0r 'a=are seems to +e very sure that teachers selected were of high cali+er in knowledge and character 'ow this idea comes to his mind, is difficult to understand As a matter of fact there was no central authority controlling the appointment of teachers &here was no fixed sylla+us &he main purpose of this learning was to preserve the vedas and gaurd them from non% +rahmins /ach and every person +y virtue of +eing a +rahmin had an inherent right to +e a teacher 'e could open an ashram and take pupils as and when he likes, and he could give certificate of completion of studies as and when he chooses 'e was not +ound +y any law of land nor any convention of teachers8 +ody &here used to +e guilds and +odies of merchants and craftsmen, +ut I am unaware if some institution was esta+lished to supervise the teaching and conduct of the teacher in such gurukuls 0ost of the gurukuls were single teacher residential ones free from any royal or academic control Chat was the guarantee of $uality under these circumstancesH It is a matter of egotism, vanity and conceit to think of $uality in such teaching institutions &hese had no respect in foreign lands and never attracted any foreign students

"?

/0&t 2&" t0e $#ur"e $#ntent&here seems to +e misconceived idea that a student coming out from such a school had all the re$uisite $ualities of a good citi=en &his is far from the truth 'e used to have learned +y heart the +rahmanic sastras, which hardly make him versatile 'e could never think of outside matters Chat is not in his +ooks, does not exist for him Al+eruni, for example, mentioned that Indian scholars have no knowledge of civili=ation a+road, and they dis+elieve if some+ody tells them a+out it &heir thought process centered around the rituals, vratas and ceremonies After education, their main task involved in seeing that no+ody transgress the caste rules, no widow gets remarried, see that all girls married +efore pu+erty, and generally no+ody transgresses the caste If any+ody did transgress these rules, then this product of gurukul was to sit as the <udge to punish the guilty +y excommunication and things like that, so that supremacy of +rahmin is maintained and the divinely ordained system of chaturvarna works smoothly to the advantage of some and peril to the rest Kn#2le%ge #f 1r&0.in" &t t0e ti.e #f &rri3&l #f t0e 1riti"0 If any+ody has any dou+t a+out the standard of education of gurukuls and has any wrong ideas, he +etter see what is recorded a+out the knowledge of *rahmins at time of *ritishers8 arrival &he +rahmins of Aoona thought, their town was the whole world &hey never tried to find out who were the *ritish and from where they have here &he +elieved that 6alcutta was in /ngland and /ngland was in 6alcutta Any knowledge except sanskrit was considered as a gate way to 'ell &hey honestly +elieved that Indra tells the cloud to pour down the rain &he clouds are the elephants of Indra and on his order they make rain Aoona was such a dark valley of ignorance !0>% p ?# Such was the knowledge of scholars &he modern stories of intelligence of *ir+al, &enali .am, and -ana >adnavis are all fa+les, fa+ricated to stress upon the masses the false merit of +rahmin scholars over the royal princes Guru &" G#%

"2

It is true that 1uru was elevated to the status of 1od &here are mantras chanted +y +rahmins that guru is *rahma, guru is 5ishnu, guru is 0aheshvara, guru is real supreme godhead, to whom every+ody must +ow So we find *rahma, 5ishnu and Shiva, supreme divine trinity of post 5edic puranik gods to +e of same status as guru *ut that is not all &his mantra has to +e remem+ered along with another sastrik in<unction, that "+rahmin is the guru of all varnas" (varnanam +rahmano guru) A hindu is not supposed to take any instructions from any+ody else other than +rahmin &his e$uates not the teacher with god +ut a +rahmin with god And sure enough, they are called 8+hudevas8 % gods on the earth If there were any prere$uisites of such respect +y the society for the gurus, like good conduct etc , then perhaps this could have +een tolera+le, +ut that is not so &hat the +rahmin, even if +ecomes corrupt, he is still to +e respected as supreme within the three worlds, as is pronounced +y a 0arathi +rahmin saint of seventeenth century, Saint .amdas, in his religio% socio% political treatise % "Bas+odha" 'e also avers that +rahmin is guru of all; though he +ecomes inactive is still to +e worshipped and that if an 8antya<a8, (i e todays S6s, S&s) +ecomes learned, still he is useless At the time of 0ahatma )otirao Ahule, his +itter critic was 5ishnu Sastri 6hipalunkar % the so called 8the Shiva<i of 0arathi language8 It is reported a+out him that, he thought country means not people, +ut its land, language, hindu traditions and history of famous people &he pride of these was patriotism for him 'is writings were miles away from reality and rationalism !0> p "MM# 'e a+used Ahule +y calling him 8shudra <agatguru8, 8shudra poet8, 8shudra dharma sansthapak8 and said Ahule 8+arks8 against +rahmins !0> p "M?# 'e said *rahmins may +e cunning and cruel, +ut one thing is sure, the keys of store house of knowledge are in their waist, and without these keys no other castes can +e educated !0> p "M2# 'e repeated old sastric in<unction in an arrogant manner, that the world is under control of gods, the gods are under the control of mantras, and mantras are sole property of +rahmins, so +rahmins are the gods on earth Buring *ritish times, some /uropeans +ecame 6ollege professors and were teaching the Indian students &his e$uation of gurus with god +ecame very intolera+le to the +rahmins of

43

the time, which made Shivaram 0ahadev Aaran<ape, a learned +rahmin of 0aharashtra, to pronounce that, 8he aamache guru ch navhet" % "these people are not at all our gurus" /#.en 0&% n# rig0t t# e%u$&ti#n Since long, women are not allowed any education in +rahmanic system Some scholars are at pains to tell us that, originally, women also took education &hey point out the names of 0aitereyi and 1argee in 5edic times -o dou+t, there was a time, the sanskara of ;pnayana was allowed to women &he more important point is when was it stopped and why Aerhaps 0anu Smriti could provide an answer, when it en<oined that women should +e under care of father, hus+and or son and never independent And also that the father who does not marry his daughter +efore age of eight, goes to hell Chy were these restrictions putH )ust for weaning them away from *uddhism (n the contrary, women were educated in *uddhist centers till $uite late Iou can see a painting of a+out sixth or seventh century, in A<anta, where a girl is sitting in front of a teacher along with +oys T0ere "0#ul% ,e n# 2#.en te&$0er" Chen no teacher was availa+le for Ahule8s school, Sawitri+ai got educated and +ecame the first woman teacher in India after a+out two thousand years Altekar tells us women teachers were not seen in India, since +eginning of 6hristian /ra !Altekar A S , $uoted 0> p 9"# &oday a woman can +ecome a teacher, thanks to the *ritish, +ut still she can not +e a vedic teacher /ven in modern times a shankaracharya proclaims that women should not utter the vedic hymns &he reason he gave was not religious; perhaps he was too shy of giving a religious reason in this modern times *ut the reason he gave was a +iological one 'e said that chanting of 5edic hymns would damage the female reproductive organs 0ost astounding reason ever heard of 0edical fraternity of India is second +iggest in the world, +ut no+ody seems to have taken note of this new etiological factor in diseases of female anatomy, and commented on this 5ery very scientific attitude indeed Cre&ti#n #f Illiter&$

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Aresent India is illiterate, no dou+t a+out it *ut it was not so all the time Chen Aryans were savages, there was an ur+an Bravidian civili=ation in India, the 'arrapan 6ivili=ation, and they had their own script Ashokan edicts are scattered all over India &hey are written in Arakrit language, not in Sanskrit It shows the language of people was Arakrit As a matter of fact Sanskrit was not spoken anywhere, any time It was an artificial language only meant for writing /ven in South India, the most ancient inscriptions are in Arakrit Sanskrit inscriptions came later on &he mere presence of Ashokan /dicts denotes that Ashokan India was literate India 'istorians +elieve that a great percentage of common people in 0auryan period were literate, who could read these edicts, which were meant for common people (therwise, there was no sense in spending so much amount in inscri+ing the edicts and inscriptions on rock, pillar and caves Br 5incent Smith is of the opinion that, "literacy in those days was higher than many provinces of the *ritish regime " !Indian 'istory% p "9@# India is supposed to have largest num+er of illiterates in the world 0any institutions are fed on State revenue for the 8no+le8 cause of so called 8adult8 literacy *ut no+ody tells us why India remained illiterate for centuries It was Br Am+edkar who +rought this fact in light !vol 9, p @"# 'e averred that, without formal education the accumulated thought and experience relating to a su+<ect can not learned +y a student and he will not get new perception and his hori=on will not widen &his re$uires schools, +ooks and planned materials and literacy >ormal education was confined study of to 5edas alone, in schools only for +rahmins, as they propagated that there was no knowledge outside 5edas /ducation of rest was neglected +y the state 6hildren of vaishyas learned rudiments of +usiness geography and arithmetic from fathers in course of +usiness, and so did the shudra craftsmen from their parents &his education was domestic and practical Bue to this illiteracy +ecame inherent part of 'indus 0anu and others made laws to this effect &hose who had right to study the 5edas had right to read and write, others were deprived of this right So according to laws of 0anu, reading and writing has +ecome the right of few high caste men and illiteracy has +ecome the destiny of low caste multitudes &his is how literacy was prohi+ited

44

and general ignorance prevailed among the masses Such is the system of 1urukuls It is very surprising and sad that, there are still in this age, some learned supporters of this system, which needs to +e condemned out rightly /0 "u$0 & l#3e f#r gurukul" &he $uestion arises, why there should +e affinity in the minds of people for such gurukuls, which do not as a matter of fact exist today, except for a few attempts scattered in various states to revive *rahmanic schools, where /nglish also is taught, so also modern archery +ut no science /ither it could +e due to ignorance of exact nature of such gurukuls in the past and as a +lanket glorification of everything that is ancient, or it may +e a purposeful mischievous planed strategic tactic and a wily trick to promote +rahmin supremacy on the gulli+le 8masses8 +y the learned and knowledgea+le 8classes8 &he other reason could +e the natural desire from nationalistic standpoint and thought that +rahmin culture of ancient India was the only culture availa+le and we must glorify it, may +e it was good or +ad In%i& & l&n% #f Hin%u"4 I" it&here is a feeling in the minds of many, that India is and was a 'indu country having always had a ma<ority of 'indus &his again is a misconception In historical times the population of India was never in ma<ority of 'indus Swami 5ivekananda, !G 0 )oshi, Studies in *uddhistic culture, p 9K?# estimated *uddhist to +e two thirds of population and Br Am+edkar !Anihil castes p "@M# says *uddhist were in ma<ority &hen there were )ains and 5eerashaivas and &ri+al religions in addition to 0uslims, Sikhs and 6hristians So taking hinduism as religious faith, they were neither the most ancient nor the most numerous If one considers 'indu not as religion +ut as geographical entity like as 'indu comes from pronunciation of Sindhu, then also one has to consider others as a part of, and rightful owners of, this land, irrespective of their religious faith And 'indu or Aryan as cultural entity has a very poor claim and one could not accept the conditionality of respect for .ama and ,rishna

49

etc as a precondition of nationality, as 1ail (mvedt very rightly analyses the situation and comments, "In other words, the construction of 'induism as achieved +y the 'indu% nationalists and accepted in various forms +y many supposed secularists as well, rests on a trickE conflating the two contradictory definitions of a +road, territorial, pluralistic, historical identity with a religious culture that continues to give dominance to an Aryan N 5edic N Sanskritic N +rahmanic core " !Balit visions p 2K# Br Am+edkar very rightly said, "It must +e recogni=ed that there never has +een a common Indian 6ulture, that historically there have +een three Indias, *rahmanic India, *uddhist India and 'indu India, each with its own culture and *uddhism " !vol 9 p 4DK# 1u%%0i"t E%u$&ti#n&l + "te. &his +rings us to another $uestion Chat was the /ducational system of *uddhists *uddhists had their own educational system and was entirely +ased on different principles *uddhists never +elieved in caste distinctions, they +elieved in e$uality of all men, they +elieved in e$ual status to women /ven after the fall of *uddhism, the education system continued through the siddhas &he students used to utter 8om namao siddam8 at the start of their studies &he present 8ganeshay namah8 is $uite recent &he remnant of this system of siddhas, the word 8onama8 meaning 8+eginning8 % a corrupted form of 8om namah siddham8 % still exists in marathi language &o understand the difference +etween *rahmanic and *uddhist methods of education is a crucial point which should not +e missed if one wants to reali=e the implications of the education system in Indian Society &he ancient India was known all over the world for *uddhist /ducation, not *rahmanic *rahmanic education was essentially a single individual teacher with his small group of disciples and pupils at his residence (n the other hand, *uddhist system is institutional i e monastic &his difference is significant, leading to different lines of evolution Arof 0ooker<i It must +e recogni=ed that the history of India +efore the 0uslim invasions is the history of a mortal conflict +etween *rahmanism

4@

says, "&he necessity of a domestic environment in the +rahmanical system did not favour the expansion of a small school under an individual teacher into a large educational federation, controlled +y a collective +ody of teachers, as was the characteristic of the *uddhist system " !Ancient Indian /ducation, p @M3, $uoted from 4K33 years of *uddhism, (&I*) *apat A 5 ed, p "KM# It gave +irth to those large scale monastic universities, with thousands of teachers and students, and attracted students from all over Asia /volution which continued for more than fifteen hundred years culminated in esta+lishing ;niversities like -alanda, 5alla+hi, 5ikramsila, )agaddala, (dantpuri etc !S Butta, &I*, p "KD# &hough these universities started as training grounds for monks, did not remain places for cloistered meditation +ut developed into seats of culture and learning and remained so till got destroyed +y muslim invasions !S Butta, i+id p "KD# &hose were the times, without any +ooks, all teaching was imparted +y word of mouth *ooks came not +efore first century * 6 Students had to learn +y heart Bhamma and 5inaya, and at the end of learning there used to +e a ceremony of Aaravarna, on the last day of varsavas !I+id p "KD# &he remnants of this *uddhist practice, remains even now in the form of ",o<agiri" in 0aharashtra and +y other names in other areas like "Au<agiri" in *engal Buring the course, there was unrestricted freedom to argue, to dispute, and de+ate and each was expected to think reason and decide for himself all matters of vinaya and dhamma, !I+id p "M3# the facility, presuma+ly was a+sent in gurukuls &he su+<ects were not only dharma and vinaya +ut they were trained in e varied cultural su+<ects, in the tenets of other faith, in systems of philosophy, and even the su+<ects of pragmatic importance like agriculture and architecture Afterwards, when +ooks +egan to +e written, these centers developed huge splendid manuscript li+raries !I+id p "M"# Ce have seen in gurukuls, admission was +ased on +asis of caste, reserved only to all dwi<as technically +ut only to +rahmins in practice, +ecause in ,ali yuga, there were only two varnas, +rahmins and shudras, and the last kshatriya kula was that of -andas, +ecause they did not want to recogni=e the 0auryas as ,shatriyas Ce also know that people of all castes 4K

were admitted to *uddhist sangha, and in *uddhist centers of learning, the admission was open not only to monks of different *uddhist sects +ut, also to unordained seekers of knowledge and learning, even to non%*uddhists, irrespective of caste and sect, religious denomination or nationality !I+id p "M", "D3# It is also worth noting that the system of education was totally free and for the +enefit of residence and learning in a monastery, there could of course +e no $uestion of payment &he monasteries were maintained +y grants from princes and people alike as an act of spiritual merit !I+id p "M4#
". Send e,mail to dalits-am.edkar.org with / estions or comments a.o t this we. site. 0o 1opyright 2 2%%% dalit e,for m (ast modified: &arch 28+ 2%%%

AI5+ AND O16ECTI7E+

2.1 Ai." #f t0e "tu% A &o compile and understand the concept of OPuality of GifeQ and identify the factors which can influence the OPuality of GifeQ according to ancient Indian scriptures, such as, 01) Major Upaniads including (i1 vsya Upaniat 0ii1Kena Upaniat 0iii1 Kaha Upaniat 0iv1 Prana Upaniat M kya Upaniat 0vii1 !itar"ya 0v1 Muaka Upaniad 0vi1 #viii$ #'$ Taittir2ya

Upaniat Upaniat

Upaniat and 0i&1 %&hadrayaka

(hnd)gya

Upaniat 0&i1 *v"tvatara upaniat (2) Ancient yogic texts "u$0 &" 0i1 Bhagavadg2t and 0iii1 .aha 3oga Prad2!ik4 #ii$Pata+,ali-s 3oga S tras

4M

(3) 1yurveda 2ahits3 inc#udin, (a) (araka Sa/hit !3ga .&daya45

(+) 0g1haa2s

8e%it9 Referen$e"
" R 6heong 6heng, 6heong 6heng Iin; &ung &sui ,wok &ung &sui, Cai 6how ,ing Cai 6how, 0agdalena 0o 6hing 0ok (/ds ) (4334) Su+<ect &eaching and &eacher /ducation in the -ew 6enturyE .esearch and Innovation Springer pp "2@ IS*- 2M42@23M32 R Sarkar, A . Biscourses on -eohumanist /ducation, "1urukulE 'istory and Alanning", pp "?9%"?K,Ananda 0arga Au+lications, "22? R &he 'indu E /ducation Alus 0adurai E A 7gurukula8 for life training S *hagwat Shah

4 9 @ K

.eturn to Index

4D

4?