Happy Teachers Day – Acharya Devo Bhava
We have learned from our elders about the ancient maxim: Acharya Devo Bhava. In our Indic civilisation teachers have been placed on a high pedestal with the highest place of respect reserved for them. From the earliest days of our civilisation, we have looked up to scholars and teachers to guide us in our path to progress. So it was the fortune of independent India that a teacher got to guide the nation in its nascent stage as the second president of the Indian republic. With this thought in mind, I pay my tributes to Bharat Ratna Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan and wish everyone a happy Teachers Day.
Dr Radhakrishnan had spent most of his life as an academician, in 1909 he was appointed to the Department of Philosophy at the Madras Presidency College. Thereafter, in 1918, in what would be a matter of pride for Karnataka, he was selected as Professor of Philosophy in our state’s own University of Mysore, where he taught at its Maharaja’s College. Among the illustrious posts he served included being the Vice-Chancellor of Andhra University from 1931 to 1936, and the Vice-Chancellor of Banaras Hindu University from 1939 till 1948.
At a time when the image of Hinduism was getting distorted in global academia, it was Dr Radhakrishnan who staunchly defended our Sanatana Dharma through his scholarly works. Dr Radhakrishnani’s works on the Hindu tradition, made Hinduism more readily accessible for a global audience, and contributed to the influence Hinduism has on all modern understandings of spirituality. Truly, he was among the most reputed global ambassadors of Sanatana Dharma.
What Dr Radhakrishnan did for India can be gleaned from his own words, “True teachers are those who help us think for ourselves”. That phrase is an important one as it reminds us that teaching is one profession which is instrumental for the creation of other professions. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the guidance of my teachers, for that I would like to express my gratitude and extend special thanks to every person in our country who is associated with the noble profession of teaching and is working tirelessly to shape the coming generations.
Today we remember with respect our teachers and implore them to enable the youth of today in becoming more aware of their responsibilities while guiding them to the path of success.