All time best quote on “Principles of learning and education “
Today is one of the most auspicious days in Indian traditional festive time. Saraswathi pooja, a celebration of the Goddess of knowledge and education. I would like to share one of the all-time great quotes on learning from Thiruvalluvar a sage poet who lived in the southern Indian state of (mine), Tamil Nadu in 4th -5th century BC 2500 years ago.
This Thirukural number 391 in the chapter of education goes on like this. (In the Tamil Language)
Karka, Kasadara, Karpavai , Katrapin,
Nirka , Atharkku Thaga !
Karka : Learn
Kasadara: Here comes the punch. Kasadara means pure. He says simple learning is not at all-sufficient. One has to learn from good sources, learn deep that should be devoid of errors, contaminations, and falsehoods.
Karpavai : Thus you learn all lessons in life meticulously.
Katrapin: So, after this hard and enlightened learning, what we should do? He continues and answers.
Nirka Atharkku Thaga: Don’t just stop with learning, follow it with action in a righteous and pure way. Unless we learn this way, he warns to conclude ( in another poem in the same chapter) there is no purpose of learning itself and we are again at risk of becoming illiterates.
So, what does this Thirukural teach the Nobel professionals who follow cutting edge medical research?
I think I need not elaborate . . . Acquiring knowledge and true learning has become two different processes.
It’s just a sample of one kural (Quote) among 1330 poetic quotes written in 133 chapters by this great philosopher of Tamil Nadu who shared the same timeline with Aristotle and Socrates of ancient Greece 5000 miles west of India. For those ,If you are interested in his monumental work on literature which can be referred to as the manual for effective living (I wish to call it as “Standard operating protocol” for human life) please follow the link.