Friday, September 5, 2014

Acharya Devo Bhava

On a day which connects a true sense of belongingness between a student and a teacher. A special day on which, we struggled big time to be in the shoes of a teacher (some of them truly mimicking them with their favourite mannerisms). It was a learning experience, to showcase what it is really to be facing the crowd which I never dared during my school days and was an utter failure when I finally managed one in my 1st semester of PG. The fumble I can still remember in my deepest of dreams.
Well I may not be from a crème de la crème IIM/ IIT but a microorganism in the zillions of IT crowd. Still everyone’s got a story and everyone gets inspired and I am still in pursuit of what inspired me and in the process of learning to become one.
In a country where 80% of the times it was predictable at the time of birth what is the extent you can study based on your family’s social and financial status (I am glad that this trend is on a decline now and I wish to be part of the society on the day it is disproved and invalidated). I witnessed this teacher in an education society who dared his guts to defy the odds and bring back these privilege deprived straying ducks back in the line of schooling.  A true example of actions speaks better than words and words do inspire many such actions. “Dear Mastan sir, May your soul rest in peace and be the guiding light for many who are walking your path”.
Stereotypes are well mocked in many a ways, but I have seen the flipside of it has given out too many positive results. A mathematics teacher; he would never need a compass to draw a circle or a ruler to draw an immaculate straight line. V.B. Vallabhacharyulu a name that has tagged many like me to a perfect 100 in the subject he taught and felt prouder than us when we achieved it. “I never took the cash prize you announced in the class but Sir I have taken more valuable lessons of life. I never stopped practicing basics since then. If not this world can have more teachers like you, may you be blessed with same energy and enthusiasm to make maths a subject to like rather than run away from it”.
In the era where intelligence of students is ascertained by marks aggregated rather than the consistency shown in the marks, languages as subjects still remain a burden on the students and let go off once you enter the university campus. Seldom does anyone realise the importance of developing a student in a language he/she speaks at home. I was shocked at my own observation when I was telling a bed time story to my kids that I have learnt 5why technique of 6Sigma in my childhood when my great-granny told me that story (A King and his 7 sons).  Learning mother tongue definitely improves rationale of thinking and makes you more logical. I may not be even eligible to make an observation in the current world which is vrooming at millions of miles per second, but give it a thought on where are we heading and how long does a foundation-less skyscraper can ever sustain (don’t believe? Read the newspapers again). “Dear N.V. Sharma sir, I can never express how fortunate I am today to have learnt a language from you”. After my schooling it took almost a decade and half to have seen Dr. Devdutt Pattanaik propagating similar ideology, hope this will turn our heads back to concentrate more on the foundation.
Another 65 year young gentleman (at the time he was teaching us) who looked at life utmost positive attitude than anyone else I have ever seen till date and my inspiration to be a teacher someday in life said ‘If you can inspire one person in your life, you are successful teacher’. “Yes Prof. Subba Rao sir, you did”. I was shell shocked and almost had a celebrity moment when in the evening crowd at Canary Wharf station a random guy stops me, says ‘I know you sir, you have taken a class on Software Testing at Cognizant Academy’ I recollected a moment later, which was like a 4 hour session, 8 years back? (I should be either too good or so terrible that he remembers me after so long. I am taking it on a positive note since he didn’t beat me up in the crowd and disappear :) )

Last, but my first ever teacher, “Dad, every time I made a terrible mistake you told me a story that made me think. Many of those, I still remember to date and I will tell my son when he reaches an age he can comprehend. I wish I had inherited 1% of your logical brain, lateral and rational thinking”.