We are living in an age when there are great opportunities in social work, public life and administration. Society requires children of disciplined minds and restrained manners. Whatever line of work they undertake, they should bring to it an honest, disciplined mind. They will then succeed and have the joy of your work.
The kind of education that is imparted must not only be broad but should also be deep. We are lacking in depth. We may become learned and skilled, but if we do not have some kind of purpose in our life, our lives themselves become blind, blundering and bitter.
For a truly cultured mind, there is a single-mindedness, a dedication to a single purpose. For the uncultured mind, the whole life is scattered in many direction. Therefore it is essential that the education which children acquire in these institutions should give them not merely learning and skill but endow them with a definite purpose in life. What that purpose is they have to define for themselves.
It is said that education gives us a sense of what is right and helps us to avoid what is wrong. We must try, therefore, to find out what is required of us in this generation. A purpose which held good centuries ago may not hold good today in view of the rapidly changing conditions of our country and of the world. So the purpose which we adopt in our life must be adapted to the relevant needs of the present generation.
The study of our great classics and communion with great minds. These two are the things which mould men’s minds and hearts. Our great classics should be studied, the classics of all countries of which we are the inheritors. There are ever so many thrilling stories in our classics which will instill into us great moral strength, which will lay down for us the lines on which we have to conduct ourselves.
When we talk about education, we have several aims in view: give the people, those who are taught, knowledge of the world in which they live- science, history and geography enable you to get that knowledge; you also train the people to acquire some technical skill by which they can earn a livelihood. These are still accepted the world over as the objects of education: knowledge of the world in which you live and technical skill by which you can earn livelihood.
But what is there specific about the kind of education imparted in the institutions of our country? We have heard that the chief purpose of education is not merely the acquiring of skill or information but the initiation into a higher life, initiation into a world which transcends the world of Space and Time, though the latter informs and animates the former. That has been the main purpose of education.