Topic: Bringing Indian Culture in Schools: An Educationist’s Experience and Insights
In conversation with Dr. Chhalamayi Reddy
One of the greatest secrets revealed by the Indian spiritual knowledge is that only when a human being finds and lives from the inner self, can he or she most embrace the universal being and become one with it.
Only when one becomes truly independent, self-possessed and self-ruler (swarāt, master of one’s impulses, instincts, thoughts and desires), can one grow into becoming a ruler, master and shaper of the world in which one lives (samrāt). Only when one truly lives in the soul, one is also living in complete oneness with all. Because then the distinction between self and other is no more.
On a practical level, this truth implies that one must consciously and in full awareness try to know oneself in all its totality and inter-related layers. One must also make continuous attempts to live truly, as much as possible, in accordance with the inner truth that guides and determines one’s path of life.
When our self-expression—the outer work we do, how we connect with others, how we grow through our life experiences, the kinds of experiences that motivate us, everything—begins to flow from our inner centre of being and is in accordance with our unique law of being, we are on the path of discovering our swadharma (the true purpose of our existence in this life).
This is not an easy task, but it is the first necessity. It can be facilitated through proper education and exposure. Education must facilitate gradual progress in learners’ journey to discover their inner law and truth of being, their dharma. This journey of self-discovery must be made in the context of another journey, that of discovering their nation and its heritage.
Only when Indian children and youth are consciously aware of their Indian cultural spirit and form, can they truly work towards manifesting it through their own works and actions.
This is the essence of the ‘Insightful Conversation’ we had this month with our guest, Dr. Chhalamayi Reddy. She is an award-winning educationist with more than 3 decades of experience as principal of Sri Aurobindo International School (SAIS), a leading school in Hyderabad.
She shares with us the various programmes and approaches they have instituted in her which help bring back the Indian-ness and makes it an integral part of the students’ learning experience.
Dr. Reddy mentions that since our independence not much conscious effort has gone into ‘Indian-ising’ our education. But New Education Policy 2020 brings much hope and makes its aspirations explicit in this regard. However, she shares with us how since the very beginning of her career as an educator and educational administrator, she has been passionate about bringing the spirit of India for her students’ learning journeys at SAIS.
Watch the full conversation:
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~ Report by Beloo Mehra