Education for Character Development - Annexure

Annexure

Annexure

To Know Oneself and to Control Oneself
(An Exploratory Draft Programme)

Classes I and II

I. Stories and plays to illustrate the following themes:

1. The ideal of truth:

To speak the truth, whatever the consequences.

2. Aspiration for perfection:

whatever you do, do it as perfectly as you can.

3. Dreams of the new world:

Where truth alone prevails, where beauty and goodness pervade.

II. Special exhibitions on the above themes.

III. Teachers may recommend the following exercises and help each child to practise them:

1. Exercises in remembering and repeating noble aspirations and thoughts.

2. Exercises in observation and accurate description (leaves, plants, flowers, minerals, scenes, animals, figures, human body, artistic pictures, musical pieces, buildings, objects, events).

 

 

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3. Art of bathing, art of cleaning the teeth, art of dressing, art of sitting and standing in right postures.

4. Exercises in control of the senses: Control in regulating calls of nature, thirst and appetite;

Control in speech;

Control in behaviour;

Control in movement and action.

Classes III and IV

I. Development of the sense of wonder:

1. Examples from astronomy: distance, vastness, galaxies, expanding universe.

2. Examples from physics: what is matter behind what we see and touch?

3. Examples from chemistry: what is water? Is it mere oxygen and hydrogen or something more?

4. Examples from other sciences: caterpillar and butterfly, language and understanding, outer man and inner man.

II. Training of the senses and their powers:

1. Knowledge of the senses: five senses of knowledge, five senses of action.

2. Exercises of vision and hearing: art and music as instruments.

3. Exercises of concentration in sense activities.

4. Inner senses: capacities to see the invisible and to hear the inaudible.

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III. Awareness of the body:

Elementary knowledge relating to health, strength and beauty of the body.

Art of relaxation and art of sleeping.

The body as the temple of the spirit.

IV. Teachers may recommend, according to circumstances, the following attitudes and exercises:

1. One should study, not to pass examinations, but to discover the secrets the world.

2. Work with the body is indispensable for true knowledge and experiences.

3. Practice of concentration in every activity: concentration is the key to all progress.

4. Practice of quietude and silence in "Rooms of Silence".

5. Impromptu periods or moments when children are asked to be as quiet as possible.

Directions to Teachers
(Classes I - IV)

Some practical hints that result from the application of methods of psychological and value-oriented development are suggested here:

(a)It may first be noted that a good many children are under the influence of the inner psychic presence which shows itself very distinctly at times in their spontaneous reactions and even in their words. All spontaneous turning to love, truth, beauty, knowledge, nobility, heroism is a sure sign of the psychic influence.

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(b)To recognize these reactions and to encourage them wisely and with a psychic feeling would be the first indispensable step.

(c)The best qualities to develop in children are:

 

sincerity perseverance
honesty peace
straightforwardness calm
cheerfulness self-control
courage self-mastery
disinterestedness truth
patience harmony
endurance liberty

 

(d)These qualities are taught infinitely better by examples than by beautiful speeches.

(e)The undesirable impulses and habits should not be treated harshly. The child should not be scolded. Particularly, care should be taken not to rebuke a child for a fault which one commits oneself. Children are very keen and clearsighted observers; they soon find out the educator's weaknesses and note them without pity.

(f)When a child makes a mistake, one must see that he confesses it to the teacher or the guardian spontaneously and frankly; and when he has confessed it he should be made to understand with kindness and affection what was wrong in the movement and that he should not repeat it. A fault confessed must be forgiven.

(g)The child should be encouraged to think of wrong impulses not as sins or offences but as symptoms of a curable disease alterable by a steady and a sustained effort of the will - falsehood being rejected and replaced by truth, fear by courage, selfishness by sacrifice, malice by love.

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(h)Great care should be taken to see that unformed virtues are not rejected as faults. The wildness and recklessness of many young natures are only the overflowing of an excessive strength, greatness and nobility.

(i)An affection that is firm yet gentle, sees clearly, and a sufficiently practical knowledge will create bonds of trust that are indispensable for the educator to make the education of a child effective.

(j)When a child asks a question, he should not be answered by saying that it is stupid or foolish, or that the answer will not be understood by him. Curiosity cannot be postponed, and an effort must be made to answer questions truthfully and in such a way as to make the answer comprehensible to his mental capacity.

(k)The teacher should ensure that the child gradually begins to be aware of the psychological centre of his being, the psychic being, the inner seat of the highest truth of our existence.

(l)With that growing awareness, the child should be taught to concentrate on his presence and make it more and more a living fact.

(m)The child should be taught that whenever there is an inner uneasiness, he should not pass it off and try to forget it, but should attend to it, and try to find out by an inner observation the cause of the uneasiness, so that it can be removed by inner or other methods.

(n)It should be emphasized that if one has a sincere and steady aspiration, a persistent and dynamic will, one is sure to meet in one way or another, externally by study and instruction, internally by concentration, revelation or experience, the help one needs to reach the goal. Only one thing is absolutely indispensable, the will to discover and realize. This discovery and this realization should be

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the primary occupation of the being, the pearl of great price which one should acquire at any cost. Whatever one does, whatever one's occupation and activity, the will to find the truth of one's being and to unite with it must always be living, always present behind all one does, all that one thinks, all that one experiences.

All the above suggestions are to be implemented from day to day under various circumstances and in the context of living problems of the growth of children.

The role of the teacher is to put the child upon the right road to its own perfection and encourage it to follow it, watching, suggesting, helping, but not imposing or interfering. The best method of suggestion is by personal example, daily conversation and books read from day to day.

Class V

I. Science and Values

A simple statement of the major facts of evolution:

1. Emergence of matter.

2. Emergence of life in matter.

3. Emergence of mind in life.

4. Man is evolving.

5. Striking phenomenon of the mutation of a caterpillar into a butterfly.

6. Future possibilities of the evolution of man. Yoga is a scientific and methodized effort of the evolution of man.

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Aids for the Development of Value-Consciousness and Experience

1. To ask oneself: what am I?

2. Story of the search of Svetaketu and Nachiketas.

3. Listening to music: selected ragas (Indian) and harmonies (Western).

4. Pictures of the beauty of nature.

5. Study of great personalities: the Buddha (a detailed study).

6. Need for physical fitness: what it means (topic for study and reflection).

III. Teachers may recommend the following exercises according to circumstances and in response to the individual needs of each student:

1. Resolve daily to be truthful, to be free from fear and to have goodwill for everyone.

2. Works of labour and community service with an inner motive of dedication.

3. Clarity of thought: there is a distinction between appearance and reality.

(Examples from science, history, literature and philosophy.)

4. Cleanliness and purity of the body, exercises for the body.

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Science and Values

Striking facts revealed by science:

1. Extraordinary phenomenon of intelligence in animals and birds. 2. Possibility of intelligence even in matter or material objects. 3. Complex organization of social life in certain species of insects, animals and birds. 4. Man's intelligence: is it superior to the intelligence of animals and birds in every respect? 5. Value-oriented methods of developing intelligence and knowledge:

Concentration

Silencing of the mind

Intense search for the truth

Sincerity in thought, word and deed

Deep humility

II. Aids for the Development of Value-Consciousness and Experience:

1. Introspection: distinction between thought, will, emotion, impulse, sensation, perception, and functions of the body.

2. Story of Arjuna at the beginning of the Mahabharata War to illustrate the above distinctions (other similar stories).

3. Determination of the aim of life:

The meaning of an ideal

Ideals of truth, beauty and goodness

Ideal of perfection

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4. Study of great personalities: Jesus Christ (a detailed study).

5. Listening to music: selected ragas (Indian) and harmonies (Western).

6. Examples of poetic excellence: regional poetry, Sanskrit poetry, English poetry.

7. Need to control and master the lower nature (topic for study and reflection).

8. Diet and health.

 

III. Exercises to be recommended:

1. To make in daily life the choice for control and mastery, for regularity and punctuality; the choice for truth and perfection, for work and perseverance to the end of the work, for seriousness of purpose and inner joy and equality in all circumstances.

2. To remember the aim of life and to:

(a)Review daily before retiring one's actions, thoughts, feelings, in relation to the aim of life.

(b)Try to harmonize thoughts, words, feelings and deeds so as to progress more in this direction.

3. To observe in oneself and to practise through daily effort and exercise:

(a)Creative urge towards poetry, music, art, crafts, dance, drama, reading, writing.

(b)Capacities to feel wideness, intensity and height of consciousness and experience.

4. Works of labour and community service with an inner motive of dedication — learning the art of sweeping rooms, courtyards, washing of dishes and clothes, and elements of first aid.

5. Enlarge interests: there is no subject which is not interesting.

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Will always for health, strength, agility, plasticity and beauty.

Remember: it is not a virtue to fall ill. If ill:

Examine diet

Examine habits

Examine feelings, thoughts and actions - correct them and recover health

Daily one hour of relaxation and games, etc.

Class VII

I. Science and Values

1. How are plants different from animals?

2. Do plants and trees have feelings?

3. Experiments of Jagdish Chandra Bose.

4. Experiments of effects of music on plants.

5. Study of flowers as symbols of psychological states and powers.

II. Aids for the Development of Value-Consciousness and Experience

1. Calm and intimate company of plants, trees and flowers.

2. A study of the:

(a) Stories of Bodhisattva from the Jatakas.

(b) Parables from the Bible.

(c) Questions put to Yuddhishthira on the bank of the lake and his answers.

(d) Messages received by Prophet Muhammad from the Angel.

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(e)Account of Rabindranath Tagore's experience of his opening to poetic inspiration.

(f) "Powers of the Mind" -from Swami Vivekananda.

3. Topic for deep study and reflection: how to progress continuously?

4. Study of great personalities: Prophet Muhammad (a detailed study).

III. Methods for the development of the following qualities and skills:

Quietude

Interest in languages

Poetry and music

Clarity of thinking

Will-power

IV. Exercises to be recommended:

1. Develop awareness.

2. Go deep, very deep within in search of the soul. (Concentrate on the region of the "solar plexus" and collect all your consciousness, and go deeper and deeper in that region, with quietude, and practise this often).

3. Study repeatedly and practise the message given in:

(a)The description of the "Sthitaprajna" as given in the Gita

(b)'The Sermon on the Mount" from the New Testament.

(c)"If thou hast the work, this is thy work" by Sri Aurobindo.

4. Works of labour and community service with an inner motive of dedication.

5. Daily one hour of exercises, games, etc.

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Class VIII

I. Science and Values

1. Surprising mysteries of the human body as revealed by science.

2. Value-oriented concept of the body:

(a) The body as the temple of the spirit.

(b) The subtle body and its functions.

(c) The concept of chakras (centres of vibrations) and their functions.

(d) The concept of kundalini: how it can be awakened in different ways.

3. Yogic concept of the perfection of the body by a total psychological transformation.

II. Aids for the Development of Value-Consciousness and Experience

1. The ideal and practice of brahmacharya (example of Dayananda Saraswati).

2. Study of passages from Plato, particularly from the Apology and The Republic.

3. Study of passages from the Upanishads, particularly Isha Upanishad

4. Contemplation on the concept of "Universals".

5. Topic for deep study and reflection:' 'What is my role in the world?"

6. Reflection:

(a) What is the aim of learning languages? How to enrich knowledge of languages?

(b) What is the essence of mathematics?

(c) What is science?

Is language a science?

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Is mathematics a science?

Is history a science?

Is geography a science?

(d) What is the difference between science and art?

7. A detailed study of the life and work of Tiruvalluvar

8. Daily one hour of exercises and games, etc.

 

Class IX

I. Science and Values

1. The concept of matter in modern science and in yoga.

2. The concept of life in modern science and in yoga.

3. Importance of the sun and its energy for the life on the earth.

4. The nature of the light of the sun (Saura Agni): how it is different from the light of ordinary fire (Jada Agni) and electricity (Vidyut Agni).

5. The concept of Agni in yoga.

6. Speed of light: its importance in science. Position of an object moving at the speed of light. The concept of the mobile-immobile. Compare this with: "It moves, It moves not" - the Upanishadic description of reality.

7. The concept of time in modern science.

8. Speed of consciousness exceeds that of light according to yogic knowledge.

II. Aids for the Development of Value-Consciousness and Experience

1. What is the process of thinking? How is thinking different in science from that in philosophy?

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2. What is technology? How should technology be learnt?

3. What is the difference between art and technology?

4. Observation of the different levels of being in man: the distinction between the physical man, the vital man, the mental man, the spiritual man and the integral man.

5. Topic for deep study and reflection: "Unity of knowledge" or "All knowledge scientific, philosophic or yogic, tends ultimately to be identical".

III. Exercises to be recommended:

Repeated study and contemplation of Chapter XI of the Bhagavad Gita

Vow of the Buddha

Selected Psalms

Islamic prayers

Selected portions from Tulsidas

Songs of Mirabai, Surdas, Tukaram, Ramprasad, and other saints

Prayer of Swami Vivekananda

Class X

I. Science and Values

Our knowledge regarding man:

(a) Man in evolution

(b) Has man made progress?

(c) Limitations of man

2. The phenomenon of death. What is death? (in the physical, psychological and yogic senses). Can death be conquered?

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3. Dependence of bodily life on respiration, food, blood circulation and sleep. Is this dependence necessary or indispensable?

4. The yogic powers of mastery over food, sleep, respiration and blood circulation. Limitation of these powers; dangers of these powers; real perfection.

5. The right attitude towards food, sleep, respiration and other limitations of the body. Need for temperance: avoidance of extremes. Need for change of consciousness. Mastery over bodily limitations possible only at the highest levels of yoga.

6. The concept of the divine body.

II. Aids for the Development of the Yogic Consciousness and Experience

1. Elementary powers of expression.

Necessity and methods of development of these powers, particularly in relation to:

(a) Faultless language expression.

(b)Faultless bodily expressions: recitation, singing eurythmics and dramatics.

(c)Faultless deeper expressions: poetry, dance, art and craft.

2. Elementary powers of perception.

Necessity and methods of development of these powers, particularly in relation to:

(a) Refined vision and audition, appreciation of art and music.

(b) Inner yogic visions and voices.

(c) Sympathetic feeling and understanding, experience of cooperation, harmony, mutuality and oneness.

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3. Elementary powers of action.

Necessity and methods of development of these powers, particularly in connection with:

(a) The relationship between knowledge and action.

(b) The relationship between ideal and practice.

(c) The relationship between dedication and heroism.

4. Works of labour and community service with an inner motive of dedication.

5. Study of great personalities. (A detailed study of the life of Mahavira.)

6. Why and how to study? (A topic for study and reflection).

Exercises to be recommended:

Remember and practise in daily life:

(a) Work, not to come first, but to do your very best.

(b) You have no right to criticize anybody, unless you can do better than the one whom you want to criticize.

(c) Cultivate in yourself those qualities which you want others to cultivate.

(d) Select books, magazines and films with utmost care, and under the guidance of some teachers whom you trust.

(e) Do not indulge; do not kill your emotions, but learn the difficult art of control, purification, mastery and transformation.

(f) You have within yourself an inner soul, full of purity, joy and love and light. You are to discover it and bring it forward in all your activities, thoughts and feelings.

2. Continue to enlarge interests.

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3. Continue to will for health, strength, agility, plasticity and beauty.

4. Daily one hour of exercises and games, etc.

IV. Programmes of Self-Education

The following exercises may be recommended:

1. Observation and development of the natural tendencies, preferences, inclinations and interests.

2. Where have I reached in my progress?

3. What are my defects?

4. How to face defects without depression?

5. What should I do to overcome my defects?

6. Preparation of a programme of self-discipline.

7. Am I talking too much? To learn to speak only what is necessary.

8. Am I lazy? To resolve to remove idleness.

9. How to organize my life and my activities?

V. Study of selections from Valmiki and Vyasa

VI. A detailed study of the life and work of Guru Nanak.

 

Class XI

I. Science and Values

1. The role of intuition in discoveries and inventions of science. Yoga as a conscious method of the development of intuition.

Ancient Indian sciences and yoga.

Ancient Indian knowledge and modern scientific knowledge: some striking examples.

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4. Systems of yoga: Hatha Yoga, Raja Yoga, Karma Yoga, Jnana Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Tantra, Integral Yoga.

II. Aids for the Development of the Yogic Consciousness and Experience

1. Need for the systematic knowledge of the principles and methods of yoga.

2. Need for the Teacher: the real inner Teacher.

3. Need for inner aspiration in the student.

4. The right attitude towards time: to do everything as quickly and as perfectly as possible.

5. Study of great personalities: Sri Ramakrishna and Swami Vivekananda (a detailed study).

III. Exercises to be recommended:

Reflections on:

1. Scientific and philosophical methods of knowledge.

2. Can science and philosophy explain the ultimate reason of events and processes of the world?

3. Value and limitations of the philosophical concepts of:

    Deism

    Pantheism

    Theism

    Monism

    Omnipresence, omniscience and omnipotence of God

4. Value and limitations of the philosophical proofs of the existence of God.

5. Can God be experienced? Affirmation of spiritual experiences. Varieties of spiritual experience. Yoga as a systematic knowledge of spiritual experience.

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Class XII

I. Science and Values

1. Yoga as an exploration of existence by an enlargement of consciousness.

2. Yoga, like science, is a systematic body of knowledge.

Yoga, like science, is non-dogmatic.

Yoga, like science, accepts the criterion of verification by experience.

Yoga is science, par excellence (statements from Swami Vivekananda on this subject).

3. Materialism, science and yoga.

4. Need for the synthesis of science and spirituality.

5. Science and the discovery of the fourth dimension.

6. Discovery of the manifold dimensions of human personality.

II. Central Experiences of Inner Consciousness

1. Experience of true individuality:

(a) Experience of the Witness Self.

(b) Experience of the Psychic Being in formation.

(c) Experience of the discovery of the Psychic Being—experience of the second birth.

2. Experience of Silence or of nirvana.

3. Experience of the Cosmic Consciousness.

4. Integral experience of the simultaneous Silence and Dynamism.

5. Supramental time-vision.

6. Change and transformation of human nature.

III. Aids for the Development of the Yogic Consciousness and experience

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A brief study of the following topics:

1. All life must be accepted, but all life must be transformed.

Works of knowledge

Works of love

Works of life-force

Problems in accepting and transforming these works.

2.Synthesis of the four main theories of the aim of life:

Supracosmic

Supraterrestrial

Cosmic-terrestrial

Integral

3. Development of a vision of ideal perfection, individual and collective.

4. Man's present condition and possibilities of his further evolution.

5. Psychological experiences of various parts and domains of being. Conflicts between the rational being, the aesthetic being and the ethical being. How to resolve these conflicts?

IV. Exercises to be recommended:

1. Sustained exercises of clear thought.

2. Intensive introspection

3. Progressive harmonization of various parts of the being

4. Creative work with sustained enthusiasm and the spirit of perfection in expression.

5. Programmes of dedicated community service

6. Consistency in aspiration, effort and dedication

7. Equality in success or in failure, while working constantly for the triumph of the Truth.

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8. Development of the powers of philosophical reasoning, scientific observation and experimentation, artistic expression, and technological skill. Harmonization of these powers by rigorous internal exercises of will.

V. Programme of Self-Education

To discover within oneself the secret guide and teacher and to take up the charge of educating oneself progressively and integrally.

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