Gurur Brahma Guru Vishnu Guru Devo Maheshwara Guru Sakshat Parah Brahma Tasmai Shree Guruveh Namah!
Most Indians (sorry this may be homogenising all other religions!) know this prayer. Today is Teachers’ day. It is one profession for whom my fascination will never end. I recently met a Pediatrician with 35 years ex experience – she teaches for an amount of fees that is less than the cost of petrol from her house to the college. Why people teach even if not paid well could be to ‘learn’ from their students, but after 35 years of experience?
Well that is the ‘love’ of teaching, is it not? Here is an amazing story.
A ‘white’ journalist from Europe was visiting Jagadguru Shankaracharya of Kanchi. The journalist asked him saying “you are a guru to a handful of south indians – that to largely of a particular caste, how can you call yourself a ‘jagad guru’ \ teacher to the world. Shankaracharya just smiled and said “Your interpretation of the word is different from mine. When I am called Jagadguru, I mean Iam learning from the Jagad. Every person, tree, animal, incident, book to me is a learning opportunity so I am a Jagadguru – the Jagad is my guru. It is a fantastic learning for anybody.
The other example I like to tell my students is to say – Look at the entrance of any temple – it has an elephant and a lion. Elephant stands for prosperity and the lion for strength. Wealth and strength are normally the causes of a person’s ego. When you go into a temple, the symbols remind you to leave the ego outside. It is exactly how you should enter a classroom – there is always something to learn. If you go in thinking ‘I know more than the trainer / teacher, you miss out on the learning opportunities. It is a complete waste of time, you might as well go watch a movie without disturbing others in the class.
Hey thankyou all my teachers, students, professors, trainers, customers, readers, colleagues, ….I am what I am because of you. If there is something lacking in me -it is my ego preventing me from correcting it.
So hey God give me the strength to over come it. Happy teachers day to all of you. Most of us have been created by our teachers.
Mata, Pita, Guru, Daivam!
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