Academic Trends in Higher Education for Tolerance

EDUCATION, 14 Oct 2019

Surya Nath Prasad, Ph.D. – TRANSCEND Media Service

Few exceptional persons in every society have been tolerant in all times and at all places. In the past, among them, Jesus Christ, Prophet Muhammad, Buddha and Saint Francis of Assisi were the highest type of exemplary tolerant personalities. They loved even their enemies. But the world needs all the people to be tolerant everywhere for human survival in the age of intolerance.

Today there is utterly urgent demand of global tolerance because peoples in extremely greater need of tolerance. Ignorance about the similar common basic needs and common feelings in all the peoples of the world and their denial of fulfillment of these common human basic needs are the fundamental reasons for differences in them leading to intolerance not only towards others, but they are intolerant towards themselves also.

However, tolerance education is a remedial education.  No doubt, it will remove the symptom of intolerance, but cannot remove its cause that is ignorance about the self and its integral manifestation.

Therefore there is a great need for introduction and implementation of perpetual life-long universal peace education everywhere in the courses of schools, colleges and universities – this is core of tolerance education – for integral manifestation of universally inherent five elements, viz. body, vitality, mind, intellect and spirit in every man and woman everywhere without any discrimination enabling them to be man (human) for sustainable mutual tolerance everywhere. Thus tolerance is the byproduct like justice, peace, democracy and other similar values of universal peace education.

Global Tolerance as Vision: Why?

We all are victims of intolerance within and between the groups. Sometimes we are intolerant towards ourselves also. And the result of intolerance is always violence. There is no any part of the world where people are free from intolerance. Hence, there is urgent need for global tolerance as our vision for sustainable mutual peace and development.

Mutual Respect towards Differences and Conscientization towards Similarities in All as Mission

This is my honest revelation what I spoke about 25years ago in my keynote speech on Education for Tolerance and Peace was its half and secondary truth of knowledge about our differences and practice for mutual respects towards our differences, which will make the learners tolerant. But reality is that intolerance still exists apart from so many preaching, messages, saying of good words, efforts by governmental and non-governmental organizations including United Nations and the recommendations of conferences on tolerance.

Today I shall tell you the rest half basic truth about Education for Tolerance and Peace that is knowledge about similarities in all of us that is fundamental to bridge the differences among us which enables us to live in harmony maintaining our differences. Therefore perpetual knowledge about our differences and our similarities should be our mission in framing the program of education for tolerance.

Perpetual Learning to Be Man through Universal Peace Education as Objectives for Programs in Tolerance

Comenius gave three advices to the people to be tolerant to develop humanity, viz. erasing the past by forgiving past disputes, injustices and injuries, mutual tolerance by allowing everybody else  to uphold their opinions, and conciliation by Comenius gave three advices to the people to be tolerant to develop humanity, viz. erasing the past by forgiving past disputes, injustices and injuries, mutual tolerance by allowing everybody else  to uphold their opinions, and conciliation by joining their thoughts, aspirations and actions.

However, families, schools and universities, religious institutions, governmental and non-governmental organizations, United Nations, particularly UNESCO have all failed to make people tolerant. The reason is wrong diagnosis, hence there is false remedy, and the result will certainly be worse.

We have to develop the humanity (the man) first in every man and woman everywhere without any discrimination, and then he and she will naturally be tolerant towards their differences. Man is missing from us. Universal Peace Education is the only remedy for intolerance. Universal Peace Education is perpetual integral manifestation of universally inherent five elements viz. body, vitality, mind, intellect and spirit in every man and woman everywhere without discrimination of any type. These five elements are known as five bodies, viz. physical, vital, mental, intellectual and spiritual, and each body requires particular food to grow or to be unfolded fully. Integral unfolding of all these five elements will enable every man and woman to be man (human) to be tolerant and peaceful.. Partial unfolding of these elements will make them inhuman leading them to be intolerant and violent. Non-unfolding of all these five elements will force them to be slaves and they will be perpetual victims of intolerance.

Therefore there is a great need for introduction and implementation of perpetual life-long universal peace education everywhere in the courses of schools, colleges and universities – this is core of tolerance education. Curriculum should be framed on the five elements which constitute every man and woman everywhere to realize the objectives for programs in tolerance.

The methodology of universal peace education would be dialogue and discussion for learning, not teaching through indoctrination, because teaching is violence, and learning is peace. Hence we need mathetics (the science of learning), not pedagogy (the science of teaching).

Let tolerance be a global reality by framing academic programs in higher education based on inherent treasure of similar five elements in men and women everywhere as primary learning, and also to frame the academic programs based on basic differences in all the people for harmony in their differences as secondary learning though it will happen due to the result of primary learning of five elements.

For more details about my views on education for tolerance and peace, my Chapter on universal peace education in a book, my conversation on peace education on a TV News Channel, and my concept of learning as peace and teaching as violence, one may open the links:

https://www.transcend.org/tms/2015/12/education-for-tolerance-and-peace/

https://translate.google.co.in/translate?hl=en&sl=fr&u=http://www.editions-harmattan.fr/index.asp%3Fnavig%3Dcatalogue%26obj%3Dlivre%26no%3D58155&prev=search

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LS10fxIuvik

https://www.transcend.org/tms/2014/09/learning-for-nonviolence-and-better-governance-versus-teaching-for-violence-and-worst-governance/

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Dr. Surya Nath Prasad, former president & currently executive vice president of International Association of Educators for World Peace (IAEWP), associate professor of education emeritus, former visiting professor, the graduate institute of peace studies, Kyung Hee University, Republic of Korea, founder & editor-in-chief, Peace Education: An International Journal. dr_suryanathprasad@yahoo.co.in


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This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 14 Oct 2019.

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