Category Archives: Education

P. G. Diploma

P.G. Diploma Course in Gandhian Thought 2017-18

Since the last twenty nine years, our Institute has been running Long term Residential Course /Post Graduate Diploma Course in Gandhian Thought at Wardha. The Institute is happy to announce one year Post Graduate Diploma Course in Gandhian thought for the academic year 2017-18. The object of the Course is to provide an opportunity for a fairly intensive study of the life, philosophy and methodology of Mahatma Gandhi.  It also provides experience in community living, manual work, sanitation, agriculture, spinning, devotional music and field work. The faculty consists of eminent leaders of Gandhian Movement as well as well-known academicians. The classes and discussions are conducted in English and Hindi.

  The Course is a demanding one, and requires sustained physical and mental work. Apart from regular class lectures, the Institute tries to develop a new vision of harmonious life based on self-discipline, respect for labour and self-reliance. Students will be expected to observe the discipline of the Institute, develop the spirit of wearing Khadi and take full part in the work of the campus community. Several special short-term courses are also held during the year, and the students will have the benefit of attending at least some of them. In addition, it provides real experience in field work by visits/stay in Gandhian institutions/ashrams, universities and villages and constructive organisations.

Applicants must have a Master’s degree or Bachelor’s degree in Arts, Commerce, Science, Peace Studies, Gandhian Thought, Social Work, etc. of any recognized University or Deemed University, or a degree equivalent thereto. The upper age limit for admission is 30. It will be at the discretion of the Institute to relax the upper age limit in the case of deserving candidates. The total number of seats in the course is 15.

The syllabus of the one year Post Graduate Diploma Course consists of different courses synthesizing both theoretical and practical elements along with dissertation. The Course would follow the grade system in evaluation and it includes both external and internal assessment. The Post Graduate Diploma will be awarded to those who successfully completed the course. Others will be given a Certificate of Attendance of the Course.

No fees will be charged for the Course by the Institute. Hostel facilities will be provided free of cost by the Institute. The Institute offers stipend to a limited number of economically disadvantaged persons, and a few who are not sponsored by organizations and find it difficult to meet the boarding expenses themselves. The stipend will be Rs. 1500/- per month. A mess charge of Rs. 1100/- will be deducted from the stipend which will leave a sum of around Rs. 400/- for other expenses. All travel expenses to and from Wardha are to be met by the students or sponsoring organizations.  Students will have to bear the medical expenses in cases where prolonged treatment becomes necessary. The Institute reserves the right to change and alter any of these conditions, if necessary.

Applications of those who seek admission must reach the Dean, Institute of Gandhian Studies, Gopuri, Wardha – 442 001, Maharashtra, on or before the 30th of May, 2017

  Those who have been shortlisted for admission will be informed of their selection on or before first week of June. All such candidates will have to appear for an interview at the Institute with original documents and their admission will be finalised. The Course will commence in the first week of July and the academic activities usually end in the first half of April.

               (C. S. Dharmadhikari)

          Chairman

Encl: Application form, Syllabus and Circular ( Please Click on Documents)…

Conflict, Violence and Education

Satyabrata Chowdhury

 

1. Analysis of Conflict

     Feelings of injustice or deprivation give rise to conflict. These feelings may have some real basis or it may be only because of some false or imaginary ideas. Some times false ego gives rise to conflict. Conflicts are also created or imposed upon by interested persons or groups for some ulterior motive to make some gain out of it. In a democratic country political conflicts will always be there and these are not discouraging if they do not result in violence or go against the interest of the people. In a multi-racial, multi-religious, multi-cultural country like India there is always a challenge on ethnic, communal or cultural issues creating conflicts. The contradiction between the privileged and deprived sections of the people, educated and illiterate people, people of higher caste and lower caste within the same religion, social discrimination between men and women, trend of political subjugation of a small section of the population are the major sources of origin of conflict. In inter-country relations economic, political or military domination of strong countries over weak countries often result in conflicts.

 

2. Conflict and Violence

     When conflicts are not reduced or settled through negotiations or other constitutional means, it gives rise to violence. Violence is taken as a short cut method for resolution of conflicts. Suppressed sense of deprivation or injustice finds vent through violence and in extreme cases it leads to terrorism. The terrorist attacks on World Trade Centre in New York and Pentagon in Washington on 11th September 2001 have created a sense of concern all over the world regarding terrorism but not for the root cause of conflicts or their resolution. For decades and centuries powerful governments in the world indulged, promoted and even exported terrorism in other countries for their narrow economic or political interest. Weaker countries have to surrender or tolerate all such injustices. There is doubt how far the aggression on Afghanistan in retaliation of terrorist attack is justified.

     Root cause of such violence is hatred against an individual or group of people or society or country. Hatred is inherent in human character which is kept subdued by rationality and wisdom. When this rationality and wisdom disappear in the name of religions or ethnic superiority or strong sense of injustice or deprivation, conflicts develop and violence sets in. Every sensible man understands that war against Afghanistan causing large scale devastation of the country can not put an end to terrorism. Lord Buddha said more than 2500 years ago that enmity can not be put to an end by enmity. Only by amity and equanimity peace can be achieved. So terrorism can not be eliminated by counter-terrorism. Sensible people of  USA demostrated against such retaliatory violence and proclaimed that eye against eye was not the solution as this would only result in a world full of blind people. In the country of Gautam Buddha and Mahatma Gandhi, we can well understand that violence can not be put to an end by counter-violence.

 

3. Conflict Resolution and Religion

     If we look back to progress of human civilisation, we find that at the initial stage for centuries man had to fight continuously with the fierce beasts in the jungle and also with natural disasters, for their survival. They had always to keep themselves alert against all those hostile elements of the surroundings and circumstances. As a result man became aggressive, self-centred, ferocious to save him. Gradually, when they learnt to live in groups it became easier to fight against beasts collectively but due to conflict of interest there were often fight between groups. Man did not hesitate to kill animals and also men of other groups. Thus violence and hatred became inherent in human character. With the advent of religions, good sense developed and man learnt to worship God or some Super Power for their benefit and also learnt to love others. According to Persian cult Jorothrusta appeared about 3700 years ago and preached for love and peace. The most powerful exponent for peace Gautam Buddha was born in India more than 2500 years ago. Millions of people of many countries were inspired with the preachings of Buddha that non-violence and peace is the most valuable asset of human civilisation. Jesus Christ sacrificed his life for the cause of love, justice and peace. An important preaching of Bible is “Thou Shalt Not Kill.” Hazarat Mohammed, founder of Islam religion, also preached for justice, peace and love. Though thousands of people were killed in crusade or fight mainly between Mohamedans and Christians, it can not be denied that religion played a positive role in removing sense of hatred and violence in human culture and developed a sense of moral values and love for others. Religious temper of giving much emphasis on God or Supernaturalism is gradually losing its strength. In modern times, ‘Humanism’ emphasising social justice, human values, service to mankind and love for all human beings and with rational approach to all natural phenomena is gradually replacing the dogmatic religious culture. This also denounces hatred and violence. All these religions play a vital role in developing ethical values in the society and sense of natural justice. Resolution of conflict becomes easier when a sense of natural justice prevails in the society.

 

4. Role of Education

     Resolution of conflict without resorting to violence is the essential condition for establishing peace in the society. Peace is an attitude towards life which strengthens social cohesion and makes life worth living. Education can play a positive role in this direction. It can develop a culture of amity and peace with love for others, mutual respect for each other and better understanding for others’ feelings. Creation and not destruction should dominate human actions. Education prepare mind with universal love and tolerance irrespective of differences in religion, caste, ethnicity, language and culture. A culture of peace should be introduced through education at all levels starting from preliminary level. It has to be impressed in their mind from early childhood that it is peace and not violence that helps human civilisation to survive and progress. Violent activities often have some immediate thrill which draws people’s attraction. It is a fact that a few extremely brutal persons have earned their place in history through their barbarous activities. But in all cases there might be some immediate temporary victory or gain but ultimately they all had to lose otherwise human civilisation would not have survived. It is to be understood that ultimate victory is always that of peaceful constructive and developing activities. We have to realise that non-violence or peaceful methods have a bigger strength than that of violence. Non-violence is a power which can be enjoyed equally by all, rich and poor, as well as strong and weak. Through education qualities like fearlessness, self-control, tolerance, humility should be cultivated which will help in developing proper attitude towards life and a healthy culture of peace. We have to examine our existing curriculum and textbooks to identify if there is any such components in them which promote a culture of violence and hatred for differences in religion, ethnicity, culture, sex and other prejudices. Often in study materials they give too much emphasis on violent activities and war heroes. But it must be made clear that victory begets conflict or enmity and the defeated party always have dormant tendency to retaliate. This retaliation and counter-retaliation leads to total destruction. Peace content must get an appropriate position in our education process. Lives and ideals of great men who, preached for love and peace, should get due importance in our study materials. Religion controlled the human thoughts and action to a great extent in the ancient world, and even today, after so much scientific and technological development, influence of religion in human activities can not be ignored or underestimated. Often ignorance of other’s religion gives rise to conflict out of misconception. But no religion preaches for hatred. Basic tenets of all religions should be taught to the students. Also, too much emphasis on materialistic aspect and consumerism makes man self-centered and narrow minded. Some aspects of spiritualism in appropriate form should be included in the curriculum, which may induce some magnanimity in the character. Proper humanistic education taking care of developing scientific skill, accumulation to knowledge and promoting humane faculties will create a society where conflicts may be resolved amicably with justice.

5. Conclusion

     In a human society, conflicts will always be there between individuals, between groups, between nations because of differences of opinion, clash of interest, establishment of superiority and various other factors. There is theory of thesis and anti-thesis. Conflicts help in material and intellectual advancement. Economic deprivation and social subjugation are the basic causes of conflicts in human society. In the study of history of human civilisation, it is found that there was a continuous trend of torturing the weak by more powerful individuals or groups, exploitation of the poor by the rich and landed people, hatred of the upper caste people on the lower caste people, neglect of the illiterate people by the educated people, socially over powering women by men and such other injustices. Such social injustices are constant source of discontent, giving rise to conflicts. Instead of solving those conflicts, they were always suppressed. In progress of civilisation and development of humanistic attitude, people are now gradually getting more and more concerned with Human Rights that demand social justice to all sections of the society. Every human being must be provided with their basic needs for food, shelter, clothings, access to education and health care and freedom. Extreme poverty and illiteracy among the major section of the population is the greatest tragedy for India. It is shame that a small section of our population including public servants and political leaders are living such a luxurious and expensive life which is in sharp contrast with the common people. Naturally this wide discrimination is a constant source of discontent and conflicts. Also in the global context there is sharp contrast between the rich and poor countries. A reasonable economic order through equitable distribution of wealth, among different nations and more particularly among the people of the same country, is very much needed to avoid conflicts and clashes. This is the biggest challenge faced by the human society. Keeping aside these basic facts, only slogan for ‘peace’ can not change the society. In education, along with spreading ideas of universal love and tolerance and importance of maintenance of peace for sustaining human development, there should be sufficient provision to make the students conscious about denouncing such extreme inequality in distribution of wealth. A mindset will be prepared that will help in developing a society where equitable distribution of wealth will be given due emphasis. Proper concept of human welfare should be cultivated through education. A humanistic education, covering various aspects responsible for creating social discontents giving rise to conflicts and emphasising on maintaining peace in resolution of conflicts, will create a society worth living.