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A few thoughts on education

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<Education – Table of Contents>

Fundamental in theosophical approach is the unbiased respect for the best products of human mind and spirit in each and every culture, ancient and modern. All genuine philosophy, religion and science of all times which has universal Truth and the wellbeing of all as its sole aim, form together the proud heritage for all humankind, useful for the present and the future. If we wish to lay a basis for education for all individuals and humankind of the multicolored global community, we can nourish ourselves through all the cultural roots which transported the nutrients we need for our evolution from all beginnings, through the past to the present.

Two of the fundamental evergreen ideas which are greatly supported in Theosophy are those of reincarnation and karma. Reincarnation and karma mean that every individual is a soul, a pilgrim on cyclic and eternal path of evolution and growth. These ideas, if accepted, have indeed a gigantic impact on our views on education.

No child is born as a tabula rasa. Every entity born in the flesh on earth has a very long history of experience and decisions taken as a result of experiences. Every soul has the right to walk its own path unhampered by educational dogma’s, according to its own unique individuality, fulfilling its own unique niche in the cosmos. Striving to listen to the silent voice within, every soul has succeeded and faltered many times, but all the same it has grown. Thus it evolved all its subsequent forms of existence, mentalities, emotional traits and states of spiritual awakening or relative blindness.

Education, as I see it, is a twin: one half of the twin consists of guidance and instruction of the newborn human being in the modern world in which he just took birth. He has to learn to handle his body, his psychology, the impulses coming from this new environment, and he has to be taught the skills particular to his society.

The second, and in the long run more important twin half of education is to help the soul to develop its inner qualities which are of a less evanescent character, those qualities which will serve the individual through a far longer future, who build his deeper character, and bring him closer to understanding and unity with his divine essence – the divine soul which in reality he is. This is true for the individual, but also for humankind. This education is not for one life, but for a kalpa as Hindus call it, a grand cycle of the soul, the fruit of which are the seeds for kalpas to come.

For present day higher education, I mean on university level, it means that the curricula should not only involve the mental, material and practical sciences, but also offer opportunities for the development of the fine qualities of the soul. This means indeed training in the higher faculties of our being which go beyond the mental and emotionally moral faculties on which our mainstream culture is now based. ALL good aspects of the human should be given a chance. Then universities will become Universities.

Individual, perhaps small and seemingly (from a quantitative and material point of view) insignificant organizations can play a major role in this. They sow the seeds. We should offer curricula which contain seeds to be sown and harvested in and from the soil of the soul. These should be of the highest quality, and the teachers should be wise and ethical rather than only learned. In the lecture some proposals will be briefly presented and explained.

Taken from:


from a lecture

for Intercultural Open University Conference Feb 2006, Jaipur)

The complete lecture is posted on this website as:

Culture Transcending Education – A Theosophic Viewpoint


<Education – Table of Contents>