Have you seen drops of water sticking to a glass, refusing to trickle down? Do you know why it does not?
Even I do not know. I completed my high school with Science and Maths, and went onto become a software engineer, and now head a software company. Yet I do not know an answer to this simple question which occurred to me recently, while brushing my teeth.
Numbers were invented to to solve problems of day-to-day existence. So were mathematical formulae, and the complete stream of physics.
Yet when we teach our children, there is a complete delinking of natural phenomenon from the solutions early scientists discovered. We are pushing knowledge onto them that the human civilisation gained over thousands of years through natural observation in an attempt to solve the puzzles nature offered.
It must be insanity surely, to give answers to questions that our children are not asking. It is also a poor method of teaching. What would it be like if we developed in them an inquisitiveness to ask questions, and inspire and work with them to find the answers? Offering an answer to such an inquisitive mind would have much deeper significance, and would also stay with the child for much longer, perhaps for life.
“गेहरा सन्ख्या ज्ञान” (“Gehrah Sankhya Gyan” – deep and internalised knowledge of numbers) I heard Shahji talk about during a lecture organised by “Jodo Gyan“, an NGO working to help children understand maths from early childhood helping develop a love for the field (surely preventing them from developing a fear).
This is the education we’re missing.
Our attempt to offer answers to unasked questions, and without encouraging a spirit of self-discovery and self-enquiry, is also the reason we are dealing with the monster of religious fanaticism.