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THE ART OF LEARNING

There is a quotation - "A Learned person learns from his experiences, but a more learned one learns from others' experiences." All the inventions and discoveries have been made through practical experiments. What is the use of such a knowledge or education which is written in books but not utilised. The Chinese saint Confucius says - "Man should not only wander in search of knowledge, but should try to utilise the same in life."

Mahatma Gandhi has written - "Whatever portion of knowledge, filled in the minds of men, is utilised has its value; the rest is nothing but useless burden. "Hence the value of learning in our practical life is so visible that all the people feel wonder at such noble people and consider it a miracle, because of the penance and hardship entailed in their practice. Hence we should keep an ideal in mind and learn the method of practising the same.

The value of physical work is much less as compared to the mental or intellectual. Hence try to learn and find out new fields and pastures that have remained untraversed so far. We should always increase our mental faculties, In Rig Veda, we have been told: Whatever objective a man thinks in his mind and works in that direction, he is able to achieve the same.

It is aid that the three foundations of learning are: (1) seeing much, (2) suffering much, and (3) studying much. While as a student, most of our knowledge comes through listening, as we advance in age, we can devise various other methods to make education interesting experience.

Just as a child is curious to learn more and more about as many things as possible, it is a human trait and we must be curious to learn in detail going into the depth of all what we want to study. We can always keep this trait in mind and utilise it for better purpose, making our learning interesting at the same time. This idea if practised daily can even become exhilarating and as a result you will feel happy at the end of the day. Because of the simple fact that your have not undertaken this as a task or work, but as a play and this mood should give you pleasure, instead of being tired. But I would like to caution you here that even play or game has become 'work' for those who have taken this seriously and earn money thereby as is happening in today' world. What an irony of the situation in that physical games, e.g., boxing, lawn tennis, cricket, etc., are more paying job than any other work, excepting the tinsel world actors. But they also play as actors and actresses for people to enjoy.

How far they themselves enjoy, is difficult to surmise!

The question is how to make the process of learning so interesting that a student may naturally feel attracted towards it? Generally, most of the students consider it a burden, so tedious a responsibility as has been said in a Hindi proverb.

! To study is to chew the iron-grams.

According to most of the students, it is unpleasant and boring as also a distasteful imposition from outside; they do not put their heart and soul in their work, thus ending with a second or third division.

Manu Maharaj writes in his famous book Manu-Smriti:The more persistently, perseveringly and regularly a person studies a subject, the more he will be ale to understand its basic concepts, and that which appeared to be tough to follow in the beginning will become quite interesting. Some Hindi poet has also written:

With constant practice, even a dull-witted person becomes an expert. Practice makes a man perfect. Hence if a student works hard and continues to do so regularly without break, he is bound to succeed in his mission. There can be no two opinions on this point. If you learn the hard way and overcome the difficulties with courage, you will relish your work all the more and are not likely to forget easily what you have learnt.

Even otherwise whatever is learnt and memorised as a child, is not likely to be forgotten. Experience tells us that childhood memories become our life-long partners. Nowadays 'learn while you play' methods are being devised, particularly for small children who grasp the fundamentals of their subject without being conscious of it. For grown-up children, lessons on different subjects are given on television. This makers the task of learning easy and interesting, because even ten thousand spoken words cannot make such a great impact on the mind as one visual scene.

Indeed it is one of the greatest lessons of life that the burdens we carry by necessity or by choice, instead of weighing us down can actually lift us up in life. Certainly the students who have to accept the burden of learning, because there is no escape from it, why not change your attitude towards the burden and sing your way through life, thus making it not only acceptable but interesting and pleasant? Your learning will actually lift you up ultimately and will make your life purposeful, like the burdensome wings of the birds that become attached to their backs, enabling them to fly. Your learning and education will certainly lift you up in life!

 

 


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