This post has been published by me on the occasion of the Teachers’ Day as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 2; the second edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.
What can a girl-just-turning-into-a-woman of “now” wanting to be a teacher herself talk about the teachers of “then”?
I was a student even a couple of months back and in a couple of months ahead the role’s going to be reversed when I’ll be taking up teaching. I was petrified about doing a terrible job, scared that the students wouldn’t even listen to me. When my mother came to my rescue. She only had a simple advice. Be all that, that you wanted and never got in a teacher, all that which had made a teacher your favourite and stay away from all that you thought harms the student. Don’t teach, inspire.
Then I realised the world of difference in the teachers who are and who were.
Talking of India alone, and definitely not as an expert, being in a field of science where guidance is everything, I long for the days when teachers were gurus and they were considered as the the embodiment of divinity along with one’s parents. Can most of us say the same of our own “gurus“? I doubt it.
There were the times of studying with the guru while staying with him and his wife, doing chores and learning simultaneously, when learning was not limited to facts but values. When teaching culminated in the exaltation of mind, building of character. When man was guided and moulded to be the rational, compassionate being he is purported to be.
As a student, I used to get angered how less of morality and more facts from books are taught today. How can one take on the great responsibility of the most crucial period of any child’s life and mistreat it? Encumbered by politics, blinded by petty, self-absorbing greed and thoughtlessness, the so-called teachers have misused and abused the true meaning of ‘teachers’. I have never understood how a teacher forgets, how it was to be a student once. It is not a revenge cycle. Being a teacher is not the freedom to terrorise the younger minds who cannot revolt. Being a teacher is not the way to be all that you had hated in your teacher, just to get even with his memory. Being a teacher is not wielding your power to destroy a future with favouritism or negligence.
But great teachers are not only limited to an almost-ancient history, with advent of better life and modernization, great teachers have become few and far between, but they are not extinct yet. Today, few men try cross the boundary to ascend into the realms of being “the Creator”. But there have been the ones holding the light as men travelled down the paths of life. Buddha, Guru Nanak, Kabir, Swami Vivekananda, Shri Aurobindo Ghosh even today there have been teachers like APJ Abdul Kalam who have shown the way, the ones who have made a difference.
As I forge ahead, my usual optimistic idealism rears its head. All hope is not lost. Even in this bleakness, there still shines that ray of faith. I recall those rare but omniscient beings to whom teaching was the continuation of knowledge from a generation to next and not a way for easy money. The ones who remembered being a man of principles is equally, if not more important as being a master in a trade. The ones who have refuted the saying ‘those who can, do; those who can’t, teach’ and have both done and passed on the knowledge. The teachers who have known the value of teaching, not leaving it to the lesser beings who really couldn’t do it, and really have delved deep into the souls of their pupils.
Remembering the teachers of today who let you play to your strengths, find and overcome your own weaknesses and help discover your own self and the great teachers of yesterday who have given us great words, thoughts and insights to be a human being first do I move ahead in this realm. Great teachers are a rare species who make lives, nurture minds, create great men, an undertaking of the highest order. As we have learned from the great philosophers, a fortunate few have also known it first hand, an experience that also confirmed how dismal, depressing the reality, the present has slowly become. Shaping minds once was the sculpturing the future of the country and now has slowly converted by the so-called teachers in so many instances as a personal positions of frivolous power. This stark difference is probably what has been the biggest revealer as to what what truly being a teacher entails, and as to the legacy left behind for being the ideal teacher, of the grave responsibility it carries.
I have been more than afraid to be teacher but I have been more enthused by the thought that it is still I, a teacher who can make the difference to a mind. Emboldened by the examples of the great philosophers and teachers of the past and learning from those who made me see the greatness in being teacher, that I want to step onto being a worthy teacher of the future; to become a teacher of “now” worthy of my students, worthy of being as much an inspirer as a teachers of “then”.
Guru Brahma Guru Vishnu
Guru Devo Maheshwaraha
Guru Saakshat Para Brahma
Tasmai Sree Gurave Namaha
Its way past the time to bring back the true spirit and glory of the teachers, of the guru back. The future rests on it, India rests on it.
The fellow Blog-a-Tonics
who took part in this Blog-a-Ton are Vipul
, Indian Pundit
. Click on their respective names to read their posts on Teachers : Aaj Kal
. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton