The Learn to Earn Syndrome

The definition of education that all of us are pursuing in this fast paced world has given way to myriads of problems. But before dealing with the problems, let me just put forth the cause. In India, all and sundry (rural-urbane divide effect in this case is tending to zero) believe that studying is the most essential condition to earn. This brief purpose and notion of education is true but certainly incomplete. And the consequences of this are miserable. Every child in our country goes to school (if at all he does) with a preconceived notion that if he studies well he will get a good job and consequently a good life. The effect of this is a process brimming with monotony and boredom. Everybody loathes studying, for the plain reason that there seems to be no immediate benefit.

Another dire consequence of clinging on to such a feeble definition of education is, that scores of people in our country lament about not being able to continue their creative passions. There are countless people who had the innate desire to be singers, painters or cricketers but were compelled to take up some alternative profession in life. Most of the times, artists (dancers, singers painters etc) and sportspersons (cricketers being the only fortunate exceptions) have to struggle a lot and sweat it out to achieve a standing in society. Not many parents in our country want their children to “sacrifice studies” to pursue their creative interests. The fault here lies in the system, because even after 61years of independence our government has been unsuccessful in providing an infrastructure in the country which is suited to take sports or arts as mainstream careers. So, many people in urban areas end up doing MBA or an engineering degree because such degrees would “secure” their careers, but the fact remains that they could have been much more content in life if they were permitted to do what they were actually passionate about.

This problem encompasses our rural counterparts too. Very often we sulk about the high rate of illiteracy in India. But my humble contention here is, that when people in rural areas don’t know the value of being educated, then how can we even expect them to look after the education of their present or future generations. People believe that if their child gets well- educated he will earn and run the family and so most of the children are employed at a very tender age. Here they get meagre amount of money and are made to work under inhuman circumstances. This according to me is one of the major causes contributing to the deplorable state of our rural masses. These people ignorant of the bliss provided by education waste their lives being away from it.

It’s high time that all of us (rural-urban divide effect should tend to zero here) change our perception of the very term ‘education’. Its time to remind ourselves that educating and getting educated is the basic difference between homo-sapiens and other living organisms on our planet. It makes us rational. The main object of education is to grant us the Freedom and gumption to unravel the mysteries around us. Someone has very rightly said that “Education is something which remains in us even after we have forgotten all we were taught”.

The government should introduce sustainable policies to make our education system more meaningful by giving requisite importance to sports and arts education too. An ambience should be created, whereby everyone can throw this “learn just to earn” attitude out of their lives and enjoy the real bliss of education. All and sundry should be allowed and supported to pursue their passion as their careers and am sure the world would boast of many more winners in the true sense.

Srishti Gupta


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