Education at Crossroads

9.
Conception of Education in Ancient Indian Tradition and Culture and its Contemporary Relevance

Introductory Questions

At the outset, let us ask the question as to why we need to explore the concept of education in the ancient Indian tradition, and why we want to ascertain the relevance of that concept to the present time. Justification for this exploration could arise if we ask a further question as to whether our present system of education is relevant to our own times, and if we are prepared to under take a critique of the present system.

Do we Need to Change the Present System of Education?

There is a view that the present system of education is, after all, quite reasonable and what we need is to make it a little more sophisticated, much more polished, with some modifications here and there like vocationalisation and job-orientation, and what we further need is to ensure accountability of teachers and educational institutions. It has even been prominently asked, in defence of the present system, if we ourselves are not the products of that astern and whether we are not, more or less, quite well-equipped deal with our responsibilities.

There is, on the other hand, a more progressive view, which does not admit that we, the products of the system of education, are what we ought to be, that a better system could have made us better equipped, in terms of both personality and skills, and capable of meeting the demands and challenges of our times. The spectrum of this view is quite wide, and at one end, it advocates

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