Essay on the Vedanta System of Education

Here is your essay on the Vedanta System of Education:

According to Sankra soul is pure and unblemished and it cannot realize the ultimate ‘Brahm’ only through devotion and karma without true knowledge. To know the real self or ‘Brahma’ is salvation or moksha. ‘Sruties’ the gems of ancient literature have called out emphatically, ‘Satyam Gyanam Anantam Brahma’ which means that knowledge is to know the, ‘self and ‘Brahma’ as one and the same element.

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A living being is full of consciousness and intelligence. Hence there is dynamism in him. Devotion and Karma reform and develop the capacity of soul towards higher and higher reaches leading to the ultimate knowledge or gyan.

According to Sankra there are three kinds of children on the basis of their interests and capacities i.e., superior, average and inferior. Sankra assigns the knowledge and study of vedant for the superior, devotion (Bhakti) for the average and karma for the inferior ones.

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Concept of Reality:

Sankar Acharya in Vedantic philosophy advocates that nature, life and physical world are not different but manifest themselves in the form of ‘Brahm’. Due to ignorance (Maya) human life and material world appear true and real. According to him Brahma is unlimited, formless and attributeless. But reacting with Maya, it is able to create life and this material cosmos.

The ultimate aim of all human beings is to realize this ultimate Reality or Brahman. Soul and Brahma are one and the same. Hence his theory is known as monoism’ or ‘advaitvad’. Sankra postulates a distinction between Brahman and Iswara. But according to Ramanuja Brahman and Iswara is one. According to Sankra, Brahman is without qualities but according to Ramanuja


Brahman possesses qualities. He is perfect purusottam having such qualities as Truth, Knowledge and Happiness. According to Sankra the world is Maya or unreal, it has nothing to do with Brahman. On the other hand according to Ramanuja the world is the sport of Iswara and is constituted of its part and thus it is real because nothing created by Iswara is unreal.

Concept of Values:

According to some critics, “the Advaitavada of Sankra has no place for ethics as it raises the supreme ideal of life above good and evil.” But this does not mean that there is no place for ethics in his philosophy. The aim of life according to Sankra is beyond what is achieved through life.

Again even after the realisation of the ultimate end the liberated person does not leave society nor become interested in it. The liberated person, essentially established in the Brahman consciousness does only that which is always right as it directly follows from the ultimate good, the Brahman. Sankra has emphasized the importance of Niskama Karma.

Thus, though the right and wrong, the sympathy, pity, forgiveness and other virtues might be relative and of the lower level for the liberated person. The aspirant works for self-purification before being liberated and after liberation works for the purification of those who are still in bondage.

Aims of Education:


The ultimate aim of education is to prepare the child for the realization of Brahma. Education should make the child able to realize his self in all its aspects to the fullest possible extent so that he identifies and realizes the ultimate reality.

The child can realize Brahma and become one with this ultimate truth through real knowledge obtained by his own efforts. Sankra views education in two ways—one is spiritual which he calls Paravidya and the other is material that is Aparavidya. Spiritual education is true education which gives knowledge of God.

Under the Apara or material education one is imparted the knowledge of means to practise Dharma and at the same time he is also enabled to understand the nature of Adharma i.e., unrighteous actions. In Paravidya one has to be detached and his ultimate goal is to become merged into God Himself.

In Apara Vidya one is naturally attached and involved in material properties and pleasures of the senses. Thus the Apara Vidya has to be shunned if one has to strive for the realization of essential unity between soul and God.


Keeping in view all the three categories of realities, curriculum should consist of Geography, History, Economics, Sociology Science, Commerce, Vocational and Technical subjects. Together with these, for those children who do not evince any interest in getting spiritual knowledge, other subjects as Literature, Psychology, Physics, Biology and Philosophy should also be included in the curriculum.

However it may be noted that he has particularly, emphasized the study of Veda- Upanishad, Gita and Brahmasutra. Along with these one must also study various Mantras, Smritis, Nyaya-Vaisheshik, Sankhyayoga Mimansa Darshan, Buddhism, Jainism, the principles of Vaishanavism. From the practical point of view, a Brahmjigasu (search of God) student will acquire proficiency in certain arts for serving the people in general i.e., for parmartha or welfare of others.

In the co-curricular activities are prescribed such items as worship of God, pilgrimages, practice of yoga, satsang etc. From the spiritual point of view the curriculum has to be Brahma Anubhuti oriented i.e., oriented towards the ultimate realization of God.

Methods of Teaching:

Sankracharya has laid emphasis on the following three methods of teaching knowledge centered, devotion centered, karma centered. Knowledge centered method includes Real vision and Logical conclusion through logical reasoning. Devotion centered through self-surrender with the ideal which leads towards Salvation. Karma centered includes fasting, penance, charity, abstinance, self purification and self realization.

The supreme method is the knowledge of formless, attribute less, limitless and ultimate reality which is nothing but Brahma. This knowledge will lead the individual towards Salvation (moksha).

Sankra has designed his own methods of teaching in consonance with his conception of education. These are the following: Shravan Vidhi or the method of attentively listening to the teachings of Guru, Manan Vidhi or the method of pondering over what the Guru has said, Nididhyasan vidhi or the method of reaching the point of a definite conclusion, Question-answer method is an important technique for helping the students to remove his doubts with the help of a Guru, Tark Vidhi or the method of reasoning, Vyakhya Vidhi or the method of making a terse matter easy to comprehend i.e., exposition, Adhyaropa or Apvad Vidhi i.e., to project out the unreal into the real, Drishtant Vidhi or illustration method, The Katha or story telling method and Upadesh method or lecture method, it is the result of listening method.


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