Education, not indoctrination

When I was a freshman at Cornell University in 1971, the Biology 101 professor, in her course introduction to the class of 1300 students, announced that she had five acres of marijuana growing behind her house.  Some students cheered, some students booed her, and I just sat there, shocked, because my expectation of the college professors as the guiding lights of society was being quickly shattered.  The educational system, from preschool through post-graduate studies at the universities, has gone much further downhill since then.  The yellow buses come every day and bring the children to the indoctrination centers that are called public schools, where the youth are infused with evil and atheistic agendas that lead into an ever- deepening abyss of ignorance and degradation.  Then, according to the plans of the demonic class of men, the innocent students perpetuate the misguided agenda, thinking that this is progress and freedom of expression.

Real education is based on the science of Absolute Truth and leads to proper behavior and healthy families and communities, centered on Godly principles.    Proper education requires qualified educators.  It is not only the children who need to be educated.  Who will teach the children these principles if there are no adults who are properly schooled?

So-called educators and leaders who are themselves devoid of knowledge of the importance of moral and spiritual principles, no matter how well-meaning they are, cannot offer anything of real value to the people for whom they have responsibility. They can only promote the quest for materialistic gratification, which results in unhappiness and frustration.  The personal examples they set have more impact on their students than the lessons they teach.  For someone to be a perfect teacher of any art, he or she has to be acting in a way to also be perfecting his or her existence, which means striving to re-align themselves with God.  How disappointed I was, even as a college freshman, to see professors and teaching assistants at the same crazy parties that I attended. Aside from not providing any good example, they were proof that real pleasure was very limited in the mundane realm.

Modern education leads us away from basic moral principles and accepting spiritual authority.  Even the greatest souls, the most intelligent students, will be influenced and misled by it.  They are trained to take as authority the mind and its speculations, emotions, feelings, sentiments, and so on.  It is very dangerous.  Only the proper acceptance of spiritual authority can free one from the cycle of repeated birth and death and lead us to real and eternal happiness.  Basic morality is an essential foundation for building spiritual growth, but not the goal in of itself.  It is the basis for the creation of a God conscious society, and will also be a symptom of such a society.

Parents have more influence in the lives of their children than anyone else.  What is learned in the home, whether by book knowledge or by experience, is what will have the longest lasting effect on the child.

It is said in the Vedic literatures that we should never become a parent, teacher, or spiritual master, if we cannot save our dependents from the cycle of birth and death. No education of this world can prevent us from leaving this body and having to take another birth. No education of this world can prepare us for the time of death, or how to live our lives to assure progress on the path back to Godhead, never having to return to this world where the M.O. is simply to cause pain to ourselves and others.  Modern education only supports the student in eventually falling into the lower species, from which there is no chance to develop God consciousness.  This is most unfortunate. The real goal of education is to promote spiritual progress.  Spiritual progress invites the soul, who is pleasure-seeking by nature, back to the real pleasure of the Spiritual Kingdom.

A real educator knows that we are the eternal soul, encased in the body but yet not the body.  A real educator knows that we get our bodies dependent on our activities and desires, and only the purification of our actions and desires will guarantee a higher destiny, and thus real happiness.  A real educator can answer questions such as what happens at the time of death, why am I suffering in spite of all my efforts to enjoy this world, how did I get this body, why are some people born attractive or unattractive, wealthy or poor, healthy or deformed?  A real educator teaches Truth without being influenced or seduced by political or economic agenda.  A real educator must know God. A real educator is not a cheater.  A real educator is not ruled by dogma.

On the mundane realm, we practically see the ineffectuality of modern education.  For example, degree holders in Gender Studies have been given no practical input how their bodies work or how to care for them or even accept them as God has given them, and that people who have achieved graduate degrees in electronic or other digital skills have no practical way to support their families once the power is out or the internet goes down. They can’t build a house, dig a well, plant a garden, or milk a cow. We have to live in this world, and there have to be practical skills. These skills are generally taught locally, using the available resources and expertise.

Real education takes into account the psycho-physical nature.  When a person is well situated in his or her role of strength in the community, it is a much easier platform from which to develop God consciousness.  That requires a custom education according to one’s inherent mindset and physical capacity. It is natural that some people will be more spiritually and philosophically inclined, some will be more military or leadership inclined, some will prefer to farm and trade goods, and some will be more pre-disposed to physical work that supports the rest of society.  A healthy society requires all classes of humans working together in harmony, all of them inspired and encouraged in their skills and occupations, satisfied in their roles by dint of the proper application of their natures.  To try to educate someone outside of his or her nature is inherently frustrating, ineffectual, and unsatisfactory to both the student and the teacher.  We see this practically when young people are forced to join the military against their natures, or that the political heads of state do not have the qualifications of real leadership and instead act as pawns in a corrupt system, leaving the citizenry unprotected and abused.  When there is proper education, based on the uniqueness of the individual, with God at the center, there will automatically develop all the things for which people strive, such as societal harmony, protection of the land and the animals, and the prosperity that naturally develops from the conscious stewardship of nature.

There can be no more delay.  Proper education with God at the center is required. There is no buying back a lost moment, not for any amount of money.  The children are at stake, their children are at stake, and our communities are at stake.  The future of humanity is at stake. The well-being, balance, and health of our planet is at stake. Will humans further degenerate into simply two-legged animals, knowing nothing but eating, sleeping, mating, and defending, or will they embrace their God-given ability to understand and share higher principles that lead to the ultimate success, re-uniting with the Lord in love?  This means to act independently of any worldly system of education.  The parents must reclaim their children, and themselves.  It is imperative.

The teachings of the Vedas, as presented by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, give all the information necessary to create healthy individuals, families, and spiritual communities.  On a practical level, there can be simple practices in the home such as reading these spiritual literatures together, chanting the Holy Names of the Lord, and learning other devotional arts, such as preparing foodstuffs and offering them to Lord Krishna before having the meal.  A few like-minded families acting together for devotional gatherings and training the children in practical skills such as gardening and carpentry, along with the standard academic requirements, will be a powerful source of sanity, happiness, and strength in an increasingly insane world.

Śrīla Prabhupāda was not an advocate of big, big projects.  He told one of disciples that he created big, big projects for big, big egos.  Localization and sustainability, with God, Krishna, at the center is a very powerful and practical way to spread Krishna consciousness all over the planet and bring peace and purpose to the hearts of many. The development of love of God is not sectarian.  The principle of reawakening our God consciousness is at the core of any real religion, and the literatures of Śrīla Prabhupāda delineate a science that is of utmost value to everyone.  He gave everything in his books to educate and uplift humanity to the highest possible perfection, and it does not require a centralized temple or large community school in order to achieve the goal of life.  Real education is very practical, and most essential, if human society is not to continue on its fast track to irretrievable degradation.  Śrīla Prabhupāda gave the prescription by his teachings and his impeccable personal example.

In order to support those who are seeking real education for themselves and their families, we at Purely Prabhupāda Inc. have developed PurelyPrabhupā for offering the pre-1978 versions of Śrīla Prabhupāda’s books and various introductory videos on the science of spiritual life, PurelyPrabhupā to present our own realizations in video, essay, and podcast form, and to give some necessary basics to those who are beginning their home practice or educating others in creating a sacred home environment.

In mathematics, when we have a string of “zeros,” there is no value.  However, if we add a “1” to the left of those zeros, suddenly there is value.  In the same way, there can be many skills and talents, and the real value comes when God is added.  Any educational system, in order to have value and relevance, must be God centered.  This is the educational system that we are offering at Purely Prabhupāda, on behalf of, and by the mercy of, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Śrīla Prabhupāda.  We humbly ask you study the resources we have mentioned, and to share them with others if you find them inspirational.