JEEVAN VIGYAN (SCIENCE OF LIVING)

  • The Building of a Spiritual cum Scientific Personality
  • Efficiency of Working
  • New Dimensions of Education
  • The Resolve to build a healthy Society
  • The Practices of Jeevan-Vigyan
  • New Man : New World By: Acharya Mahapragya
  • What and Why?
Man has been progressively developing ever since the earliest times. There are three developmental dispositions in him : jigyasa (desire to know, inquire, investigate), Bubhusha (desire to be or become anything), and chikirsha (desire to make or do or perform). Man has jigyasa. At times he wants to discover new facts. He has chikirsha. He wants to do something.
Man wants to remake himself, wants to become something. These three dispositions have helped the various stages of development. Today development has reached a very high stage for which education has been chiefly instrumental.

Education has been the chief determinant of all development. The basic means of education is practice. Nowadays we have forgotten this basic meaning. Today by education we mean studying. Now practice is of two kinds : that meant for acquiring and that meant for properly using. Acquiring or knowing is also proper education but it is not all of education. Putting to proper use what one has acquired or learnt is an important part of education. These sequential stages are as true of religious education as of mental education.

Today religion is repeatedly faced with the question : Why is it not being effective? A man went to a hermit and asked him, "Why is religion so ineffective these days?" The Hermit asked :"How far is the King's palace from here?" The man answered :"Two hundred miles." "Do you know it ?" "Yes I do" "Have you actually got here?" "How could I? I am right here. I can't get there unless I go there." At this point the hermit said : "Now you've got the answer to your question. You know the Kings palace but you can't get there unless you proceed in the right direction. The same is true of religion also. People do know what religion is but unless they act accordingly to its precepts - unless they advance towards it - religion will have no effect on them."

There is an analogous story of great significance. A disciple went to his guru and said : "Gurudev ! Since times immemorial people have been trying to know why religion proves ineffective. The same question is troubling my mind today."The Guru knew the trends of the times. He said, "My son, go and bring a pitcher full of liquor."

The disciple was amazed to hear the word liquor. He wondered what sort of demand it was. The guru and liquor! He was nonplussed.

The Guru repeated himself :"Whats the matter? Go and bring a pitcher full of liquor."

The disciple went away and returned with a pitcher brimming over with liquor. Placing it before the guru he said : "I've obeyed your order." The Guru remarked : "Drink all of it." The disciple was amazed. The Guru said : Be careful. You have to take the liquor without swallowing it, you have to spit the liquor out."

The disciple began the exercise. He would take a mouthful of liquor and would at once spit it out. It did not take long for the pitcher to be empty. He went to the guru and informed him : "Gurudev, the pitcher is empty." "Did you get drunk or not?" the Guru asked him. "Not in the least guru." "You say you have emptied a whole pitcher of liquor and not got drunk." "Gurudev how could I get drunk when not a drop went down my throat?" The guru said : "You have yourself answered the question asked earlier to you." " Don't understand you." "Look. People practicing a religion never internalize it. They do it superficially. In a manner of speaking they never take it down to their throats but just spit it out. How then can religion have any impact on them? How can it intoxicate them?"

Education is proving ineffective these days as its process remains incomplete. The full process requires that on acquire it first and then put it to use, try it out in life. Know and experiment. But today the later part - using, experimenting - has been all but forgotten.

Patanjali was asked :"How can one control one's mind?" He replied :"In two ways : Practice and freedom from all worldly desires." Likewise Arjun asked Lord Krishna : "How can the mind be controlled?"

Lord Krishna gave the same answer and said :"Parth, the mind can be controlled by practice and freedom from all worldly desires."

In the present we have given up practice-oriented education and have retained education confined to merely acquiring knowledge. This has lamed it and therefore it is not yielding the desired results. As we have seen, all three dispositions of man - jigyasa, bubhusha and chikirsha - are mediated by education. All three are helped by education. In other words the skill of doing something, the courage to change and become something and the ability to know and acquire something are the gifts of education. We should also know the respective scope of jigyasa, bubhusha and chikirsha. The temporal and spatial context of these are also worthy of consideration, since no thorough investigation into anything is possible in the absence of their knowledge.

There are four dimensions of education : Bodily development, mental development, intellectual development and emotional development. Between them these four encompass everything related to the individuals development. In the context let us now consider the great present education - its successive stages and its methodology. It does not sound appropriate to call the present education system faulty. Anything operational is successful.

If we want to examine the god and bad points of a thing, we will have to think of its results and achievements. Looking to the results of modern education, it cannot be said that its results are useless. The results we are getting are related to the type of education being given. It is producing good doctors, good engineers, lawyers, teachers - all of them expert in their respective fields. How can we say that the education field is faulty? When its achievements are combinable, how can we say that the education system is not good? This raises the problem - What after all is not good?

Our system of education is not a balanced one. In a balanced system of education all the four dimensions of the personality develop in a balanced.