Where spirituality meets education

Posted: March 2, 2015 at 1:51 pm

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An old woman, of French origin is seated in a Garden, wearing a beatific smile.

Surrounding her are many people - educators, spiritual seekers, mothers asking her questions The questions are all about children: How do I create silence in my class? How do I react when I see my child constantly asking for material things? What should I do when I see a child lying? And so on. In the background there are children dressed in white playing. The old woman is The Mother, the Spiritual collaborator of Shri Aurobindo. And the setting is the Shri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry.

So, why are questions about children being directed to a spiritual teacher? An understanding of the background of these two great people - Shri Aurobindo and The Mother, would be helpful.

Shri Aurobindo was an Indian Nationalist, philosopher and a poet who joined the Freedom movement and was imprisoned by the British Government.

In his Tales of prison life he writes, The only result of the wrath of the British Government was that I found God. Else readers may think that suffering is the only fact of prison life. On discovering his spiritual impulse, he later moved to Pondicherry and worked on his spiritual aspirations.

Mira Alfassa, born in France, known to her followers as The Mother came to Shri Aurobindos spiritual retreat in 1914. And became his spiritual collaborator. She brought with her varied and rich experiences including her associations with the likes of Monet and Rabindranath Tagore.

She had a deep interest in children and founded the school in the Ashram where she worked closely with teachers and children and defined her educational philosophy. Her book titled On Education reveals her profound understanding of children and education in the light of spirituality.

There are two distinguishing features that stand out from other educators in Mothers approach to education.

One is her conviction that education begins at birth, or even before birth. Two, her extraordinary focus on physical education.

She believed that education of the child began from the time of conception. She believed that the nature of the child to be born is greatly influenced by the mothers aspirations, will and the physical environment.

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Where spirituality meets education

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Written by simmons |

March 2nd, 2015 at 1:51 pm

Posted in Ashram