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Education: In Search of Truth

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Rana Eijaz Ahmad

This world and human life are a direct outcome of a dialogue between the teacher and the student. The first-ever teaching in the world was based on giving submission to a teacher. Allah is the first-ever Teacher,angels and Jin were the first-ever students. Allah started teaching to angels and Jin. Angels showed submission and Jin questioned the Teacher’s thought of creating a human being might start a quarrel with each other on the earth. Student’s (Jin) thought was based on jealousy towards human beings and pride that he had based on his superiority complex.

Since the student had been created with fire while the new creature human being the Teacher proposed to create was to be a composition of dust, water,and a soul. Fire can vanish both water and dust but not a soul. This is what the student was unaware but the Teacher knew, being an Omnipotent. Allah admonished his student’s pride and allowed him to incite His creature till the day of judgment.Pride is a net result of jealousy that finishes the importance of an individual who carries it with himself since he is giving importance to others’ traits and values.

The students who would show submission to the Teacher would prevail harmony in the world and the students question the authority of the Teacher owing to their composition (based on race, caste, creed, or status) create quarrel in the world. It was not the question, made outrageous to Allah but the pride and jealousy of the student in which he was embedded. For, pride is only the attribute of Allah who is a real sovereign, neither sleep nor nap for a moment. The first question of the student to his Teacher gives birth to this world. This world is a direct corollary of a debatable question and a dialogue that human beings would create harmony or peace in the world? Just close your eyes for a moment and think does it the matter? The reality or truth is what is unknown to us. What we know is relevant, maybe true or false. This piece may allow you to think? Thus here is the answer to the question. What is Education? Education is what makes you think. Allah’s words allowed the student to think. If the thinking process is without jealousy and pride we think positively and if otherwise, we think negatively.

This debate is going on and the world is living for thousands of years.  We may say education is all about different experiences we go through our sensory neurons that are sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch. The process of harmonizing our experiences according to the situation may make our life a lot easier. The first-ever learning experience a living organism experience when it has no understanding ofits precincts.The fusion of sperm from millions only one or more sperms fused with one or more eggs at one time. The fusion of sperm and egg gives life to the Zygote.

The sperm cell has no senses but destined to fuse an egg unknowingly. That unknowingly is the authority of the Teacher who knows who is going to get fusion (life) and who will not (death). The sperm who gets egg may live for a specific lifetime as per Teacher’s authority in the form of a human being. But during his lifetime that student (Iblees) of the Teacher keeps inciting to the human being for being superior that the Quran says, “AHSANI TAQWEEM,” human being created with the finest dust. On the other hand, Allah reminds us in the Quran, just imagine you are created from a drop of filth.

The contemporary system of education is creating cheaters because both teachers and students are not ready to think. The process of thinking allows you to review your behaviourand attitude towards life and positively guides us.

Our attitudes and responses are usually unpredictable. If our attitudes and responses suit our counterpart the environment becomes positive otherwise unpredictable. Therefore, education’s three traditional types; formal, informal, and non-formal methods are producing tunnel vision individuals.

Comment

The importance of contemporary education in human life may be the most debatable issue ever. Since it is mind-boggling. We may have scores of questions. Does education guarantee the participatory culture? We know the literacy rate in the Middle East and the KSA is more than 85%. There is no democracy but a monarchy. Therefore, we may say that education is a means to an end not an end itself for any positive achievement.All books usually impart positivity, for example, no book says lying, killing, teasing others is good, but we know all is happening in the world. Does education make us more tolerant? The latest researches explain that the worst racism exists in the countries which are considered more educated.

According to the latest survey India, the largest democracy in the world is considered the most racist country in 2019. Max Fisher published a research-based article in the Washington Post on May 15, 2013, showed Pakistan as remarkably tolerant. “Pakistanisare more racially tolerant than even the Germans or the Dutch.” Usually, our so-called intellectuals propagate that in Pakistan Madrassa education is producing radicals and extremists. Let us have different questions and their answers regarding the contemporary education system:

Question is why Madrassa’s education is bad but western education is good? Does speaking English or writing English is the quality of education?Having command at any language is certainly appreciable but we cannot judge the capabilities of a person based on his command on the English language but his construction of ideas.

The students of western-style education are less tolerant as compared to Madrassa education. India and Jordan are considered the worst racist countries in the world where Mudrassa education is unpopular. What is the subject of education? Individuals or their attitudes?The answer is both. But the outcome is zero. What is the objective of education?Education makes you think, maybe or maybe not. According to Confucius, reading without thinking make you lost.

Education through established means is a real threat to contemporary society. Since we are very much used to such established means and not ready to unlearn the traditional means. We have to unlearn to learn new methods. There are different levels of education in the world to measure the capabilities of the people that is itself an irrational tool as no one can measure the capabilities by levels of someone’s education. If it was so why there was an economic crunch in the U.S. in 2008-09, as we know the US has the best economists in the world. It is usually quoted that the US educationists are best in the world and its education system is also much appreciated. Ivy league universities are in the US.

All scientific advancement and technologically sophisticated tools could not protect the US economic hub World Trade Centre and security hub the Pentagon from annihilation in September 2001 attacks. Gun crimes in the US are highest in the world, taking the lives of millions of people. In research, it is shown that from 2001 to 2014, 440,095 US citizens were killed by firearms. And in the same period, only 3,412 US citizens were killed in terrorist attacks. This is how the US education system is grooming the individuals. What are the learning outcomesof education? The learning outcomes of the contemporary education system in the world is based on varied factors. It varies from state to state, health, economy, opportunities, preferences, and other indicators that change the behaviour of the people towards life. Therefore, it is difficult to answer every education question.

The Way Forward

A contemporary education system is a redundant form of learning. We have to focus on an education system that may groom our behaviors and indulge students in thinking process instead of transforming them into a very well informed digital machines which transform data as per its input. The human behaviours are very complex, inequality at all levels, environment, language barriers, and other exogenous factors make us think that why we prefer one education system over the other.

This commercialized world has made education an industry where students are no more students but clients and teachers are no more teachers but sellers, selling what the market demands. If the objective of education becomes to make people think, this world becomes an ideal place to live but with the ongoing system, it can only make the world a hell. Education is all aboutpositivity towards life. We can strive for searching the truth that is unknown to us but we need not question the validity of truth that is unseen. We can only question the validity of the known things.

Allah is a universal truth but how he thinks, acts, forgives human beings, usually a mystery for us all. He calls himself in the Quran as Rabilalameen, not Rabilmuslaimeen. Therefore, He is the creator of all Jews, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Sinics, and Muslims. Allah demands His submission only from all of us and nothing else. But the Iblees who questioned the Teacher about the quarreling nature of human beings is keeping us busy in fighting with each other in the name of religion. The Iblees keeps us divided and incites us to question the existence of Allah that has nothing to do with our success here and in the world hereafter. The western education system claims that it creates and produces knowledge. Knowledge can neither be created nor produced, it can only be reproduced, interpreted, and reinterpreted. Thus, think before we die.

Rana Eijaz Ahmad

— The writer is Host Director Confucius Institute Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab Lahore. He can be reached at ranaeijaz@gmail.com