“A good teacher must know how to arouse the interest of the pupil in the field of study for which he is responsible. He must himself be a master in the field of study and be in touch with the latest development in the subject. He must himself be a fellow traveler in the exciting pursuit of knowledge.”
-Dr. S. Radhakrishnan
Today is 5th September. Birthday of Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, the second president of India, a philosopher, an academician , and a much loved teacher. Since 1962 when he became the president of India, his birthday came to be celebrated as ‘Teacher’s Day”.
Teachers are special. Not only do they impart knowledge but also guide you, mold you and teach you the ways of life. They make you who you are.
“those who educate children are more to be honored than they who produce them; for these only give them life, those the art of living well.”
Our culture has, for ages revered the teachers or Gurus. They have been put on a pedestal even higher than the Gods themselves. Our mythologies are strewn with stories where people have gone to the extremes to show there devotion to their gurus.
As the Sanskrit shloka , which is a prayer to the gurus, says-
Gurur Brahma Gurur Vishnu,
Gurur Devo Maheshvarah.
Guru Shakshat Para Brahma,
Tasmai Shri Guruve Namah.
which means that,
The teacher is like Lord Bramha, who generates the light of knowledge within us. The teacher is like Lord Vishnu, who drives us towards excellence with the help of that knowledge. The teacher is like lord Shiva, who destroys the evils within us by showing us the right path. He is the Almighty God himself and to Him I pay my obeisance.
Saint Kabir said-
” Guru Govind dono khade kake lagu paye,
balihari guru aapki, Govind diyo milaye”
My guru and my god are both before me, so to whom should I pay my respects first. My guru is greater because it was due to the path shown by him that I found my god.
Teaching is a noble profession, we all know that. Teachers have great powers in their hands. They have the power to mold the lives of whole generations. Thus a heavy responsibility lies on their shoulders. They can change the direction of an entire nation on to the roads of knowledge, prosperity and growth or they can lead an entire population to their downfall. All the religions of the world show us the power of a good teacher who brought to us the words, the knowledge that enable us to distinguish between the right and the wrong so that the world would be a better place.
So today, I take this opportunity to pay my respects to my teachers who have been an important part of my life.
And just for a thought-
anyone or anything that teaches us something can be the teacher-
the Sun teaches us never give up hope, a fruit laden tree teaches us humility because the more fruits it has the more it bends down, the ant teaches us the value of hard work and never giving up, a bird teaches us to reach for the skies, a baby teaches us to see the wonder in everyday little things of life that we have long ceased to see. We even learn from our mistakes. And our lives are said to be our greatest teacher.
And to end-
“the greatest teacher is the one who makes himself progressively unnecessary”