Teaching should not be a profession- it must be a passion. Only then can education move from the imposition of facts to the exploration of truth.Sadhguru
Teachers’ day is when students make a special effort to connect to their teachers and express their gratitude to the teachers. It is a day when students become teachers and teachers become students. Dressed up imitating their teachers, students take classes to junior students, a practice followed in many schools. Festivity, celebrations all mark the day. The teachers come together and participate in cultural programs exhibiting their talents beyond their teaching skills.
The journey of life is an opportunity to learn, and one comes across many teachers. In the early years of life, the mother, father, and siblings lay the foundation. When one goes to school, formal learning starts and teachers prepare the students for enhancing their learning. Many come across dedicated and committed teachers who do everything to make one learn. For many, the teachers remain mentors for a lifetime. The best way to pay tribute to the teachers is to live the principles they taught. In a world that is becoming more and more materialistic and student-teacher relations being limited to the four walls of the classroom, celebrating Teachers Day is a reminder that role of Teachers goes beyond academic learning.
The idea of celebrating Teachers’ Day dates to the 19th century. Many countries celebrate the day to commemorate a local educator or an important milestone in education in their countries. UNESCO In 1994, established October 5 as Teachers’ Day and many countries adopted the same. India celebrates Teachers’ Day every year on September 5 to commemorate the birth anniversary of Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, a great scholar and exemplary teacher. When his students approached to seek his permission to celebrate his birthday, it is reported that he said, “Instead of celebrating my birthday, it would be my proud privilege if September 5 is observed as Teachers’ Day”. This has led to his birthday is celebrated as Teachers’ Day in India. It is being celebrated Since 1962.
Dr Radhakrishnan was the first Vice President of India and later served as the President of India. He was born in the erstwhile Madras Presidency near the Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu border. Interestingly all his education happened in small towns like Thiruttani, Tirupati and Walajapet, and he depended on scholarships to complete his education. After completing his MA in Philosophy in 1908, Dr Radhakrishnan taught at Madras Presidency College and served as Vice-Chancellor of Andhra University, Banaras Hindu University. He also taught for several years at Oxford to impart knowledge on Eastern Religions and Ethics starting from 1936. He was knighted in 1931 and was awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1954. He was made an honorary member of the British Royal Order of Merit in 1963. One of the less Known contributions of Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan is, being one of the founders of HelpAge India, an NGO for the elderly underprivileged in India.
India is the land of the Guru Shishya Parampara, a tradition that leads to an inseparable bond between the teacher and the taught. Guru Purnima (Poornima) is when tributes are paid to all the spiritual and academic Gurus. India was lucky to have Gurus like Gautam Buddha, Chanakya (Kautilya), Swami Vivekananda, Rabindranath Tagore, Swami Dayanand Saraswati, Savitribai Phule, Abdul Kalam, to name a few. Swami Vivekananda propagated the Gurukul system in the country. Rabindranath Tagore established a school and reinvented the concept of ‘Gurukul’. The institute evolved into well-reputed Vishwa Bharati. The recently adopted National Education Policy would usher in reforms, and teachers would play a vital part in bringing the benefit of the new policy to the students.
Bill Gates said, “Technology is just a tool. In terms of getting the kids working together and motivating them, the teacher is the most important”. In coping with the havoc caused by the lockdowns and restrictions caused by the COVID pandemic, technology has played a vital role in imparting education. Students miss interacting with the teachers in person would impact the learning, and time would tell us how it has affected the learner.
Guru Brahma, Gurur Vishnu, Gurur Devo Maheshwarah
Guru Sakshat Para Brahma, Tasmai Shri Gurave NamahaSalutations to the Guru
Who is the Brahma (the creator), the Vishnu (the pervader) and Shiva (the destroyer).
I bow before the Guru, who is the personification of the Trinity.
Our scriptures highlighted the importance of the teacher, and in celebrating “Teachers Day”, let us pay tribute to all those selfless, committed and dedicated souls. They gave everything they have to nurture and mentor to realise their potential and make their dreams a reality.
*ToonLogs was posted on the same topic in 2020
Teachers Day – SciComm @ NIAS (niascomm.in)