What Do You Mean By Individual Aims Of Education?


What Do You Mean By Individual Aims Of Education
Free General Science Mock Test 10 Questions 10 Marks 12 Mins INDIVIDUAL AIM OF EDUCATION

Individual aim emphasizes the development of the individuality of the learner according to his natural tendencies. It holds the central notion that individuals should be at the forefront of the educational process. The individual aim of education means that education should develop individuals according to their interests capacities and specialties. In the present times, since the entry of psychology in the field of education, Rousseau, Pestalozzi, Frobel T.P Nunn, and other eminent educationists emphasized the individual aim of education.

Narrow Meaning of Individual Aim

In Its narrow sense, the individual aim is known as self-expression, all-round development of the child is natural development also. In its narrow sense, the individual aim is based on the philosophy of naturalization’ according to which education should develop the unique individuality of a child in accordance with his instincts.

Wider Meaning of individual Aim

In its wider sense, the individual aim is known as self-realization. Psychology also corroborates the development of individuality. This is because psychological researches have clearly established the fact that each individual is born with his own peculiar and distinct innate tendencies and capacities. Hence, it is the prime function of education to develop each individual fully and completely according to his or her interests, inclinations, aptitudes, and capacities in such a way that he or she becomes an able and capable person. In other words, the education of the individual should be planned with a view to individual good as well as the good of the society of which he is an integral part.

Thus, in its narrow sense, the individual aim of education emphasizes self-expression or natural development of the child so that after receiving education according to his interests, inclinations, capacities, and needs, the child is able to choose a vocation according to his nature.

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What are the two individual aims of education?

3. Support of Psychologists : – Psychologists view that no two individuals are alike. There is marked individual difference among the individuals. Every child is potentially unique child, endowed with natural tendencies, inclinations, interests and abilities.

  1. Therefore, the aim of education is to develop those natural powers and potentialities for optimization of his individuality in all its aspects—physical, mental, social, emotional, moral, spiritual and aesthetic.
  2. Therefore, education should be individualized to cater to the needs, interests and attitudes of the children.

Pestalozzi, Froebel, Montessori are the ardent supporters of this view.
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What do you mean by social aims of education?

The social aim of education takes into consideration the social needs of society. In other words, when a society wants to have a very strong social organization and does not permit freedom to the individual members to deviate from its social traditions, it emphasizes to a great extent the social aim of education.
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Who is the founder of individual aim of education?

Individual Aims – Sir Percy Nunn observes, “Nothing goods enters into the human world except in and through the free activities of individual men and women and that educational practice must be shaped the individual. Education should give scope to develop the inborn potentialities through maximum freedom.” Because: (1) Biologists believe that every individual is different from others.

  • Every child is a new and unique product and a new experiment with life.
  • Thompson says, “Education is for the individual”.
  • Individual should be the center of all educational efforts and activities.
  • 2) Naturalists believe that central aim of education is the autonomous development of the individual.
  • Rousseau said, “Everything is good as it comes from the hands of the Author of Nature, but everything degenerates in the hands of man.” God makes all things good, man meddles with them and they become evil.

God creates everything good man makes it evil. So individual should be given maximum freedom for its own development. (3) Psychologists believe that education is an individual process because of individual differences. No two individuals are alike. So education should be according to the interest of the individual.

  • (1) Individual aim makes individual selfish.
  • (2) Maximum freedom may go against the society.
  • (3) Individuality cannot develop from a vacuum; it develops in a social atmosphere.
  • (4) Unless society develops, individual cannot develop.
  • (5) Who will recognize society- where individual is selfish?

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Who is the main supporter of individual aim of education?

Class 11 Education Chapter 1 Concept and Aims of Education – Also, you can read the SCERT book online in these sections Solutions by Expert Teachers as per SCERT ( CBSE ) Book guidelines. These solutions are part of SCERT All Subject Solutions, Here we have given Assam Board/NCERT Class 11 Education Chapter 1 Concept and Aims of Education Solutions for All Subject, You can practice these here 10.

  • What is meant by education for individuality? How far do you accept this view? Ans: According to Percy Nunn the ardent advocates of individuality life aims at the fullest development of individuality and therefore education should aim at developing the individuality of the child.
  • In his words “educational efforts, it would seem be limited to securing for every one the conditions under which individuality is most completely developed, that is to enabling him to make his original contribution to the variegated whole of human life as fully and as truly characteristics as his nature permits, the from of contribution being left to the individual as something which each must in living an by living forge out himself.

” The individualistic ideal of education emphasises individuals excellence and personal self-realisations. I accept this view due to its some advantages. These are : (1) Biological support : The biologists believe that every individual is different from the other.

In the words of prof.G. Thompson, “Education is for the individual, its function being to enable the individual to survive and live out its complete life. Education is imparted to preserve the individual life. Community exists for the individual, not the individual for the community. Therefore, individual and not society should be the centre of all educational efforts and activities :” (2) Naturalists’ support : Naturalists like Nunn and Rousseau believe that the aim of education should be the autonomous development of the individual.

They stress that education should be imparted according to the nature of the individual. (3) Psychologists ‘ support : According to psychology, every individual has his own unique personality. Every individual differs from the other in terms of mental abilities and talents.

The task of education should be to help in the development of the innate powers of an individual. (4) Spiritualists’ support : The spiritualist believes that every individual is a separate entity and responsible for his own actions. The chain task of education should therefore, be to help the individual in self-realisation.11.

Explain the social aim of education with its merits and demerits. Ans: John Dewey, the pragmatic philosopher has put forward a broad aim of education which is known as the socialistic aim. According to this socialistic theory the claims of society are always above the claims of the individual members composing the society.

Therefore, every scheme of education should try to prepare individuals for social living. In fact the school should be a “miniature society” and everything taught in the school should have social bearing. Education is really a strong instrument of social change. The champions of these ideals maintain that society as a proper personal entity has the absolute right to dictate what should be the intimate aim of education.

Every individual should try to contribute as far practicable towards social welfare and social progress. Merits of social aim : Educationists have stressed on the social aim of education for the following reasons : (1) Man is a social animal and therefore, he develops through social contacts.

It is not possible for an individual to live without society. Raymonth believes that the ‘isolated individual is a figment of the imagination ‘. (2) John Dewey, the chief supporter of this aim believes that education should develop in each and every individual social efficiency which must be achieved by the positive use of individual powers and capacities in social occupations.

Such a person is not a burden on society but contributes to its developments. He also follows the moral and social standards of conduct. (3) Gandhi who also supported this aim had formulated the basic scheme with the objective of making people realise that education was not only for their individual benefits but also for the needs of a predominantly rural and agrarian population.

Demerits of social aim: (1) Some educationists are of the view that the social basis of human nature is not instinctive but habitual. We can change the habit of an individual, but not his instincts. Education helps us to the develop good habits to lead a healthy social life. (2) Social aim if carried to the extreme reduces the individual to a mere entity.

(3) The extreme notion of the all powerful state or society ignores the legitimate needs, desires and interests of the individual and suppresses his creative power. (4) It makes the individual only a tool in the hands of the govt, and demands unquestioning obedience and loyalty from the individual.

Sl. No. Contents
Chapter 1 Concept and Aims of Education
Chapter 2 Stages of Human Development
Chapter 3 School and its Organizations
Chapter 4 (A) Psychology and Education
Chapter 4 (B) Education Psychology and its Significance
Chapter 5 Physical Basis of Mental Life
Chapter 6 Bases and Direction of Human Behaviour
Chapter 7 Primary Education in India and Assam

12. Make a difference between individual and social aim of Education. Ans: The difference between individuals and social aim of education can be discussed under the following points: (1) Basis : Individual aim of education is based on biological heredity of man.

  • While the social aim of education is based on social heredity of man.
  • 2) Power of freedom : Individuals aim of education entrust complete freedom to the individual.
  • While the social aim of education entrust complete freedom and power to the state.
  • 3) Believes : Individual aims of education believe social development as a sub originate to the individual development.
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While the social aim of education believes individual development as a sub-originate to the social development. (4) Dependent : Individual aim of education is dependent on the philosophy of naturalism. The social aim of education depends on the physiology of pragmatism.13.

The individual and social aim of education are not contradictory but complementary to each other. Discuss the statement. Ans: As man is potentially divine, education should help the individual to develop his potentialities to such an extent that he is in a position to perfect himself. Man should therefore be educated as man.

If education fails to realize the unique potentialities of each man, it will harm him as well as the society. Progressive thinkers feel that when individuals are developed society will automatically be developed. Great socio-culture changes have been brought in this world by the personal influencing of exceptional individuals.

  • For example, no one can deny the contribution of people like Buddha.
  • Mahatma Gandhi, Lenin, Martin Luther King etc.
  • Have had tremendous influence on the life of the people.
  • People live these create society and preserve, purify and promote and transmit culture to the young generation.
  • Therefore, the aim of education should be to develop individuality.

Bertrand Russell rightly said that, “Education of the individual is a fair thing than the education of the citizen. ” By instinct, man is social. The sociological approach stresses that the development of an individual should be thought of in relation to his society and culture.

Dewey maintained that education should produce socially efficient individuals who are socially aware and culturally refined. Every individual in the society must be vocationally efficient or else he will be a parasite in the society. He should also be tolerant towards others and he is aware about the rights and duties of a citizen.

Hence, the social aim of education gives more importance to social heredity. The individual and social aims of education are contradictory to each other. Some one say that a synthesis of education for individuality and education for the development of the state is not possible.

  • In their extreme from both the aims are undesirable and not at all.
  • Conducive for the enhancement of either the individual or the society because unrestricted freedom produces undisciplined and selfish people and on the other hand subordination of individuals by the state results in the suppression of one’s potentialities.

In reality, however, the argument that the two aims are contradictory is baseless. Events in history have proved that there have been unparalleled individual achievements in the field of art, literature, science, philosophy etc. Percy Nunn one of the chief exponents if the individual aim admitted that ‘individuality develops only in a social environment where it can feed on common interests and common activities “.

Aristotle also said that, “The individual human being was not only a rational but a social and political animal, and because of this he had always lived in some kind of society. ” Thus it follows that a person develops as a human being in a community, a family, a village or in a city state. Neither the individual nor the society should be regarded as superior to each other.

Instead the individual is essential for the society and the latter is necessary for the individual. John Dewey rightly said that, ‘The individual who is able to be educated is a social individual and the society is an organic union of individuals.14. What is the vocational aim of education? What makes this aim so important for society.

  1. Ans: One of the most important aims of education in the present society is the vocational aim.
  2. In today’s world earning one’s livelihood is considered to be the most honourable experience of his life.
  3. Parents expect their children to be educated enough to earn a respectable being this makes them self-sufficient in life and consequently develops self satisfaction, mental and moral strength and self confidence vocational aim of education makes education a purposely activity.

It helps to develop various interests and arouses thoughts and feelings in the minds of the young students. Vocational aim again helps in placing a person in the right vocation and instills the right attitude to work. This aim increases the industrial competency of a person without which he becomes a parasite in the society.

Advancement of science and technology and rapid industrialization has emphasized the importance of the vocational aim of education. When the people of a national become vocationally efficient, there is economic progress and consequently political and social stability. Mahatma Gandhi said “True education ought to be for children a kind of insurance against unemployment”.

So preparation for a vocational is an important part of our education. Vocational education bridges the gulf between the rich and poor people. The education of the advanced countries lay special emphasis on developing the vocational efficiency of the people.

  • According to John Dewey “Education is meaningful only when it aims at some vocation or employment.” Today’s child should grow up to be a responsible citizen tomorrow and one of his main responsibilities is to earn a living.
  • Hence the importance of the vocational aim of education cannot be ignored.15.

What should be the aim of education in a democracy? Ans: The word Democracy is derived from two Greek words – “Demos” (which means people) and “kratos’ ‘ (which means power), From this we can easily define democracy as the power of the people. Henderson once remarked that ‘Democracy is based upon infinite value and worth of human personality and belief that men are capable of managing their own affairs in such a way as to promote the welfare of all and that they should have the freedom to do so.

  1. The basic principle underlying democracy is the importance of individuality and respect for his freedom.
  2. The main characteristic of democracy as: (1) Affirming the dignity of the individual.
  3. 2) Equality (3) Liberty (4) Fraternity According to the University commission education is the great test instrument of social emancipation.

The relationship between education and democracy is education of the masses. Because the success of democracy depends upon the civic consciousness of the people regarding various problems confronting the society. The democracy and the responsibility of the school are great.

  1. Therefore the aims of education is democracy must be formulated on the basis of the following viz.
  2. 1) Widespread expansion of education.
  3. 2) Preparing future citizens for economic productivity and self dependence.
  4. 3) Training for leadership.
  5. 4) Training for good citizenship.
  6. 5) Aiming at complete development of personality.

(6) Freedom for thought and actions. (7) Training for national discipline. (8) Educating for national integration. (9) Educating for social emancipation. (10) Preparing for international understanding. (11) Accelerating the process of modernization. (12) Educating for social equality and justice. What Do You Mean By Individual Aims Of Education Hi, I’m Dev Kirtonia, Part-Time Blogger, Web Designer & Digital Marketer. Founder of Dev Library. A website that provides all SCERT, NCERT, and BA, B.com, B.Sc with Post Graduate Notes & Suggestions, Novel, eBooks, Biography, Study Materials, and more. Pages: 1 2 3
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What is the difference between individual and social aim of education?

The individual aim emphasizes the educational technological aspect. Whereas, Social aim emphasizes on socio-economic aspect of education. Also, individual aims at the development of man’s biological potential. On the other hand, social aims at the attainment of social efficiency of man.
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What are the limitations of individual aim?

It Ignores Socio-Cultural Influence : Autonomous development of personality is inherently defective. It ignores the impact of socio-cultural environment in the development of individuality, which in reality shapes the personality of the individuals. It stresses only heredity or innate potentialities.
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What are the aims of education?

Education, as a planned endeavour, at a personal level on a small scale or institutional level on a large scale, aims at making children capable of becoming active, responsible, productive, and caring members of society.
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What is the importance of education to the individual?

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child recognizes education as a legal right of every child. Yet education remains a privilege to many. UNESCO data shows that 258 million children and youth were out of school for the school year ending in 2018.

Of that total, more than 129 million were girls and 58 million were of primary school age. Among those fortunate to have access to education, on the other hand, more than 617 million children and adolescents do not have minimum proficiency levels in reading and mathematics.1. What is education? Education is the process where an individual acquires or imparts basic knowledge to another.

It is also where a person:

develops skills essential to daily living, learns social norms, develops judgment and reasoning, and learns how to discern right from wrong.

The ultimate goal of education is to help an individual navigate life and contribute to society once they become older. There are various types of education but typically, traditional schooling dictates the way one’s education success is measured. People who attended school and attained a higher level of education are considered more employable and likely to earn more.

In developing, low-income countries, for example, there is a projected 10 per cent increase in a person’s future income for every additional year of education. Education helps eradicate poverty and hunger, giving people the chance at better lives. This is one of the biggest reasons why parents strive to make their kids attend school as long as possible.

It is also why nations work toward promoting easier access to education for both children and adults. Household food insecurity is a common problem in Somalia and is identified as a reason for student absenteeism. Many families are pastoralists, moving around where the food source is, especially during periods of drought. It becomes difficult for their children to attend school regularly.

Education helps a person hone their communication skills by learning how to read, write, speak and listen. Education develops critical thinking, This is vital in teaching a person how to use logic when making decisions and interacting with people (e.g., boosting creativity, enhancing time management). Education helps an individual meet basic job qualifications and makes them more likely to secure better jobs. Education promotes gender equality and helps empower girls and women. A World Bank report found that an extra year of schooling for girls reduces teen pregnancy rates by six per cent and gave women more control over how many children they have. Education reduces child mortality. According to UNESCO, a child born to a mother who can read is 50 per cent more likely to survive past the age of five.

A student from a primary school in Rwanda tries using a tablet computer in class. Many World Vision programs introduce technology into classrooms and youth training centres. Photo: Charity Beza Uwase 3. What are the different types of education? Education is typically divided into three categories: formal education, informal education, and non-formal education.

Formal education Formal education is the type that is typically conducted in a classroom setting in an academic institution. This is where students are taught basic skills such as reading and writing, as well as more advanced academic lessons. Also known as ‘formal learning’, it usually begins in elementary school and culminates in post-secondary education.

It is provided by qualified teachers or professors and follows a curriculum. Informal education Informal education, on the other hand, is the type that is done outside the premises of an academic institution. Often, this is when a person learns skills or acquires knowledge from home, when visiting libraries, or browsing educational websites through a device.

Learning from the elders in one’s community can also be an important form of informal education. Such education is often not planned or deliberate, nor does it follow a regimented timetable or a specific curriculum. It is spontaneous and may also be described as a natural form of education. Non-formal education Non-formal education has qualities similar to both formal and informal education.

It follows a timetable and is systemically implemented but not necessarily conducted within a school system. It is flexible in terms of time and curriculum and normally does not have an age limit. The most common examples of non-formal education include community-based courses, vocational training or short programs that are not facilitated by professional instructors. A female student in Lebanon learns carpentry, a skill often associated with men. Education of all kinds empower girls and women in their communities. Photo: Maria Bou Chaaya 4. What are the benefits of education? If all students in low-income countries acquired basic reading skills before leaving school, entire societies could change dramatically.

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According to UNESCO, 171 million people could be lifted out of poverty. But education isn’t just about living above the poverty line. It’s about quality of life, choices at work, and many other benefits, as listed below. Developing problem-solving skills The schooling system teaches a person how to make their own decisions by developing critical and logical thinking skills.

This prepares children for adulthood when both big and small decisions become a constant part of their daily lives. For example: coming up with solutions to challenges in the community or planning how to provide for a family. Self-reliance and empowerment Knowing how to read, write and do arithmetic is empowering.

  1. When a person can read, they can access endless learning and information.
  2. When they can calculate expenses and make a budget, they can start a small business.
  3. Paired with the ability to form opinions, literacy makes a person become more self-reliant, and gives them confidence.
  4. Promoting equality among individuals In an ideal world, there is no room for discrimination due to race, gender, religion, social class, or level of literacy.

This is where the value of education comes to play. Through education, one can develop strong, well-considered opinions – and learn to respect the views of others. Many experts agree that education is a significant contributor to peace in societies. Stability and financial security A person’s income is often linked to his or her educational attainment.

Around the world, there are more employment opportunities for those who complete high school, earn a degree, diploma or certificate, or go on to post-graduate studies. These can also mean higher salaries. Economic growth (as a nation) An educated population is important in building a nation’s economy.

According to studies, countries with the highest literacy rates are more likely to make progress in human and economic development. National economic growth begins with individual economic growth, which is often linked back to education. In Canada, 70 per cent of jobs have a college-level reading skill requirement. Elementary students from Papua New Guinea now have toy kits for recreation time at school. Play helps children solve problems, develop creativity and work as a team. Photo: Nelson Kairi Kurukuru 5. What does World Vision do to make education more accessible for girls and boys? One of World Vision’s objectives is to make education accessible for girls and boys around the world.

  • We see it as an effective tool to promote sustainable growth for children, their families and the communities that we support.
  • In 2020, donors sponsored 377,888 children across 44 countries through World Vision Canada alone,
  • Many of these children are now benefitting from formal education.
  • At least 12,270 children attend after-school literacy activities, while 51,585 adults were educated on child protection.

World Vision has several programs which make education of children and youth a priority. These include Child Sponsorship, the Raw Hope initiative and the World Vision Gift Catalogue, Through these projects, anyone interested in helping fund the education of vulnerable children can participate. Rosemiah, a young teacher in the Philippines, helps children improve their reading skills through a program called the Culture of Reading. Photo: Ramon Lucas Jimenez 6. How can I contribute toward making education accessible? Children in Canada have access to free education all the way through high school – but it’s not true everywhere.

Below are some of the ways you can help make education accessible for girls and boys around the world. Child Sponsorship World Vision is known for our Child Sponsorship program. It is an initiative where we pool together funds from donors, partners and the Canadian government to provide access to necessities such as nutritious food, clean water, health care and education among others.

The program benefits children across 44 countries, emphasizing access to education. Raw Hope Raw Hope is another program where we strive to make learning possible, even in the world’s most dangerous places. We do more than provide access to life-saving essentials.

Raw Hope also includes the creation of safe spaces where girls and boys can play and continue their learning, even when life is in chaos. Gift Catalogue World Vision’s online Gift Catalogue invites donors to choose from many kinds of life-changing gifts–including several focusing on education. You can help by: donating textbooks for children, distributing school essentials, donating tech for a community, and helping send girls to school,

Volunteer While monetary donations are a great way to help, it is not the only option. You can also try volunteering your time by joining groups in your city or neighbourhood. Look for associations accepting volunteer teachers and share your knowledge with children of all ages. A boy in Rwanda solves a math equation. Arithmetic can help children learn to save money, create budgets, secure better jobs when they are older and even start small businesses. Photo: Charity Beza Uwase 7. Quick facts about education in Canada and the world Different countries and regions have different approaches to education, for children and adults.

Education in Canada is generally overseen and funded by governments (provincial, territorial and federal). Kindergarten in Canada is mandatory in most provinces and optional in a few. Starting in Grade 1, education is mandatory until a child is at least 16. The only exceptions are when families adhere to certain requirements for home schooling. Canada offers a Kindergarten to Grade 12 educational system, along with some other countries, such as the United States, Australia, Germany, Japan, Singapore and the Philippines. Canada once had a highly controversial residential school system. More than 150,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit children were forced to attend church-run, government-funded schools between the 1870s and 1997. In 2016, some 750 million adults in the world still lacked basic reading and writing skills. Two-thirds of them were women.

Central Asia, Europe and North America have the highest literacy rates for youth aged 15-24 at nearly 100 per cent. The sub-Saharan region of Africa has the lowest, at 75 per cent. The criteria for assessing literacy vary between countries.
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What is the first aim of education?

What is the main purpose of education? – The main purpose of education is to provide the opportunity for acquiring knowledge and skills that will enable people to develop their full potential, and become successful members of society. School does not just involve letters and numbers, but also teachers and the entire education system where students are taught critical thinking, honesty, and humanitarianism.
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What is difference between individual and social?

Difference Between Personal Identity and Social Identity | Compare the Difference Between Similar Terms Before engaging in a discussion on the difference between personal identiy and social identity, it is vital to gain a simple understanding of what constitutes as identity.

In most, identity is understood as the sense of self that an individual develops from childhood onwards. This assists the individual to distinguish himself from the others in the, Simply identity refers to who we are. When speaking of identity one can refer to either the personal identity or else the social identity.

The key difference between these two types is that while personal identity gives prominence to the individual and identifies him as different from others in the society, social identity identifies him as a member of the society. Through this article let us examine this difference further.
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What is the difference between individual and society?

The individual lives and acts within society but society is nothing, in spite of the combination of individuals for cooperative effort. On the other hand, society exists to serve individuals—not the other way around. Human life and society almost go together.
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What are the 2 aspects of education?

Knowing and Being – The Two Aspects of Education – Journal of the Krishnamurti Schools ‘We teach what we know, but educate what we are’ – Dorothy Simmons, First Principal of Brockwood Park School Everyone who has listened to J Krishnamurti knows about the twofold aspect of education in his vision, which has been described so succinctly in these words of Dorothy Simmons.

  • Education, in K’s vision, is learning not only in the field of conceptual rationality but, in a much more vital sense, it is learning in the field of Being – the field of ‘what we are’.
  • The first is the field of conceptual knowledge ‘which we teach’; the second, the field of what we may call Existential knowledge of what we are, ‘which we educate’.

The first field involves the expansion of conceptual knowledge, and the second, deepening in our knowledge of ourselves. What I take Mrs. Simmons to be saying is that while it is one of the educator’s tasks to impart a good intellectual training to the student, this task is contained within the wider responsibility of educating’to be what one is’.

  1. And this can be done only to the extent to which the educator herself has applied herself to the task of deepening in self-awareness, of ‘being what one is’.
  2. In seeking to educate ourselves, to expand and deepen our understanding of the world and ourselves, we seek order, harmony and coherence not only in the field of abstract conceptual rationality (the logical consistency of our thinking, and correspondence between our thinking and that which we think about), but also in the field of our personal lives as we actually live them – we seek coherence between our work and our interests (the work should be interesting), emotion and reason (impulse and reasoning should go together), body and mind (we should have health).
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We desire coherence in our relationships in our immediate circle, and also in Society as a whole. We seek to contemplate beauty and order in Nature. True education should mean growth and creativity both in rationality and in personal life, and it seems that it would be interesting and instructive to unfold the similarities and the differences in the learning process in both these areas.

  1. The characteristics of the field of conceptual knowledge, its ‘distinguishing marks’, so to say, are well known.
  2. These are the detachment of the observer or thinker from what is observed, ‘objectivity’ in observation, abstraction of the ‘essential features’ of the phenomena observedfor study, formulation of explanatory hypotheses in terms of these abstractions, and correlation ofthe phenomena studied, in terms of cause and effect.

This is the field of instrumental rationality in which the validity of theories is tested by their ability to make correct predictions that are deducible from the theoretical principles, and of which the ultimate aim is manipulative power over natural phenomena.

  • The examples par excellence of such instrumental rationality are of course the ‘hard sciences’ of physics, chemistry, bio-chemistry, molecular biology etc.
  • The spirit of Science demands’that the observed fact be respected (and not tailored ‘to save the appearances’) even though it contradicts currently accepted theories, axioms and assumptions.

This spirit also demands that for there to be creativity and advance in Science, there should be a willingness to question and even give up strongly held theoretical principles when they are in contradiction with observed facts. It was such respect for observed facts (for the ‘what is’) and such a questioning attitude towards strongly entrenched assumptions and principles that enabled the pioneers of modern Science, Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo and Newton to face the intractable facts of planetary and terrestrial motion, and to question and give up long accepted Ptolemaic and Aristotelian principles such as that the Universe was necessarily earth-centred, that ‘heavenly’ and ‘earthly’ motions were intrinsically different, that the circle was the ‘perfect’ figure and that motion was necessarily teleological, and to propose the new heliocentric Universe governed by inertial motion and universal gravitation.

  • The history of Science shows that for growth, it needs the creative passion and courage of the scientist to face the facts, stay with uncertainties, and abandon incoherent assumptions.
  • Before we leave this brief account of the nature of Scientific rationality, it would be salutory to note some chinks in the rationalistic armour.

Science, in spite of its claims to pure objectivity has strong solipsistic elements in it. Hannah Arendt has pointed out that Science has fallen into a vicious circle which can be stated as follows:’Scientists formulate their hypothesesto arrange their experiments and then usethese experiments to verify their hypotheses.

During this whole enterprise, they obviouslydeal with a hypothetical Nature’. Thetechnological successes of Scientific theoriesblind us to the self-confirming nature of thetheories. When we move to the inward sphere of consciousness, which we have called Being or Existence, we see that the Concept has very little relevance.

The Concept is abstract, fixed in meaning, whereas our inner life is vital, dynamic and throbbing with energy. To illustrate: the doctor has a great deal of conceptual knowledge about my illnessits causes, cure and so on; but I ‘know’ my illness in a totally inward way in which no other person can.

I know the specific nuances of every internal bodily sensation and mental feeling it gives me. I know what exactly it’means’ to be ill in that particular way. In a very significant way, I can say that I am that illness, that my knowledge of the illness and my being are one, there is no gap between them.

In other words, we can say that our primary existential knowledge of our inner life is characterised not by conceptual cognition, but by the way in which we sense ourselves in body, thought and feeling. This primary knowledge includes the pervasive, unique and ever-present way in which we sense ourselves to be ourselves – in our kinaesthetic sense of movement in’outvvard’ space, and in our sensing of the ‘inward’ space occupied by the body’s organs.

  • It includes our orientation to time, the sense oflife as a journey from the past through the present towards the future, ending in death.
  • Neither these primordial orientations in inward and outward space and in time, nor our’ secondary’ responses such as our sensing of the quality of our relationships with other selves, or the ways in which the ‘positives’ in life (the life-enhancing qualities sensed in some persons and in children, friendships, deep relationships in the family, beauty and order in Nature, the ‘intellectual pleasures of the senses’ art, music) or the ‘negatives’ (guilt, remorse, bafflement in relationships, obsession with reputation and self- image etc.) – none, in short, of these constituents of that ensemble we call the self, can, it seems, be captured within the sharp pincers of the Concept.

The inner landscape of consciousness is not static but filled with Protean, shadowy forms elusive and impossible to pin down. The tools of abstTaction, instrumentality, ability to predict and manipulate, do not apply here, for the primary fears or obsessive drives cannot be explained away; they persist even after the most sophisticated intellectual explanation is given.

  1. Here our aim is not to gain manipulative power over our own inner life, but to get closer to it, in order to understand it and to be aware of all its inner secret movements and murmurings.
  2. And for this act of ‘getting close’ the acts of tasting, touching and feeling rather than that of seeing (which suggests distance), seem to be the apt sensory analogues.

Thus we can say that we know the unique ‘taste’ of our particular pleasure, and that we wish’to get in touch’ with our real feelings. When we do this, we clearly realise the destructive nature of inner incoherences, and they lose their power over us – at least to some extent.

  1. Great Art and Literature, no doubt, give us inklings of these feelings (they touch, we say, our deeper feelings) but even here there is the danger of making a cult of these activities, of getting addicted to the pleasures of Art and Literature.
  2. Their attractive symbols and imagery can beguile and we can be mesmerised into making fetishes of them instead oflearning what we can from them, and moving on, after dropping them.

Anthropology and history, well written, put us in touch with the whole gamut of hum an experience. In these experiences we recognise ourselves and thus come closer to self understanding. The vital act, then, in this field of existential self- knowing is to avoid the traps of rigid conceptualisation and the blandishments of symbols and images, and to really feel, touch and taste, so to say, the entire content of our consciousness – to long, listen and observe, as K said, without the word.

  1. In an age of intellectual hypertrophy, when sole reliance is placed on instrumental reason as the tool of understanding, ‘looking and listening without the name’ or ‘touching or tasting experience’ may sound obscurantist.
  2. However, we may confidently assert that there is nothing obscurantist about the act of getting close to ‘what is’ in the field of consciousness.

We all know what it means to get in touch with our real feelings – it means that we are trying to be ourselves, to be authentic. What is demanded of us, ifwe intend to educate ourselves ‘to be what we are’ is to intensify and constantly keep alive this sense of being in touch with ourselves.

  • When this is done, we feel a sense of being in touch with reality of which we, others and Nature, are a part.
  • The act of staying close to the facts, and of dropping incoherences is doubly more difficult in the ‘inner’ space than in the area of reasoning, since in that area we need to make only’ sacrifices’ of concepts; but in our personal existence, we need, in some sense, to ‘sacrifice ourselves’.

Here we have to give up the existential blockages which make up our being – our addictive pleasures and habits (mental and physical), persistent fears, craving for social approval, obsessions about self-image and reputation, and so on. These are incoherences which we try to hide from ourselves by various types of avoidance or theoretical rationalisation.

Thus a blocked relationship can be justified (‘she is incorrigible, nothing more can be done’); isolation in relationships, or an obsession with ambitious achievement can be given a ‘religious’ interpretation (‘1 am of a rajasic temperament; I need to go through this before evolving to a higher stage’).

All kinds of confusion and misery (individual and collective) can be justified by the theoretical concept of Karma. Or, we may simply avoid these questions by drowning ourselves in the addictive pleasures of acquisition (material or intellectual), or in work.

  1. Habit, pleasure and concepts thus form the three grand strategies to avoid knowing ourselves and growing in the area of Being.
  2. However, knowing our blockages by getting close to them by no means implies getting trapped in the ‘negativities’, (in what Yeats called the ‘rag and bone shop of the heart’).

Neitzsche said that ‘he who constantly fights with the devils becomes a devil himself’, and hence we need to realise this danger, and go beyond the ‘devils’, to touch the life -enhancing qualities in Nature and people. Nor do we need to avoid looking at the ideals embodied in great works of Art and Literature, provided we do not get trapped in them.

  1. Returning to the original statement of Mrs.
  2. Dorothy Simmons, it seems to be clear that only to the extent that we – parents and teachers – are prepared to work on ourselves in these or similar ways, will we be able to convey a sense of what education means, to the young person.
  3. In other words, ‘we educate what we are’,

: Knowing and Being – The Two Aspects of Education – Journal of the Krishnamurti Schools
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