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van Eyck, Jan. The betrothal of the Arnolfini. 1434. Detail.
Being fooled takes many forms. [See nearly all]

Quality control can be needed. See for example some findings from three kinds of schools: Steiner schools (Waldorf schools); homeschooling, and public education. Other forms of schooling are found too, such as Maria Montessori's method of education, which is a child-centered educational approach. Montessori education for youngsters is less developed than for younger children. It might come in handy for parents with prescool children, among others (Bowman, 2011, Pitamic 2004, Seldin 2007, Seldin and Epstein 2003).

The averages for young people educated in public schools are worse than for homeschooled children and youngsters, and at least not better than for those educated in Steiner schools. In tests, homeschooled kinds consistently out-perform those of public schools. The communication, daily living skills, socialisation and maturity of homeschoolers outscore kinds of public schools on every level.

A general counsel: If you want smarter, more mature children, homeschool them. [◦A source]

As for Waldorf education, it competes well with public schooling in many ways. (WP, "Studies of Waldorf education")

Finally, a tip for students of many a kind of schooling: There are gains to be had from ◦Transcendental Meditation, TM. Benefits to education, according to findings presented by the ◦David Lynch Foundation:

  • 21% increase in high school graduation rate
  • 10% improvement in test scores and GPA
  • Increased attendance and decreased suspensions for high school students
  • Reduced ADHD symptoms and symptoms of other learning disorders
  • Increased intelligence and creativity
  • 40% reduction in psychological distress, including stress, anxiety and depression
  • Reduction in teacher burnout and perceived stress.

In times ahead, if computerised robots and systems replace perhaps half of the human work force, as analytics think they will, there are added reasons to try a combination of what tends to bring better education of human beings. Plan ahead, and why not go for homeschooling along with TM?

It pays to get forewarned. When it comes to public schooling, what accounts for the sad facts and figures? Harold Gorst and John T. Gatto, Frank Furedi and John C. Holt and others have all spent a considerable amount of time on telling what went wrong with public schooling in their countries. Various insider outlooks and reflections blend in their works. [Book references for homeschooling and more].

As it is, large class size can limit the help and monitoring each student gets and his or her involvement. Advanced students are often not challenged. Also, there can be much fear and bullying that hinders learning in some such learning climates. As it is said, "The current public school atmosphere can be detrimental to many students."

If you stumble toward a mirage in the desert in order to drink water and save your life, you end up disappointed, most likely. Maybe you cannot afford an exhausting chase either, and die in the sand dunes.

Harsh experiences can be very hard and costy teachers, so stressful that you get ill or die prematurely from them. Avoid that. Being forewarned counts, and how to reduce the effects of stress too. ◦Transcendental Meditation, TM helps combat stress. There are positive outcomes or gains in addition. Also, getting competent and perform well in other ways may help some too. Good schooling is in part learning from the good and bad experiences of others, and thereby avoiding troubles in life, perhaps. To try to test canonical teachings to see how far they carry water, can be time-consuming.

"Atman [spirit] has no emotions, it is supreme Bliss", says the Ramayana (Suddhasatwananda,1985, 63). We may sleep on significant issues or problems and learn to take notes for getting better overviews of them. It may happen that solutions appear too, or perhaps wise steps to take.

Education through Activity and Meditation Combined

The Manu Samhita (2:85), tells: "An offering, consisting of muttered prayers, is ten times more efficacious than a sacrifice performed according to the rules (of the Veda); a (prayer) which is inaudible (to others) surpasses it a hundred times, and the mental (recitation of sacred texts) a thousand times." According to the trend that the verse speaks of by such approximate measures as "ten, a hundred, a thousand" - repeating a fit name of God mentally (that is, mantra yoga) can work. Ramakrishna says so too (Gupta 1942, 879). Buddha says in the Bhujima Sutta:

If somebody meditates with a wholesome attitude, with right attention and mindfulness, then whether he has expectations or not he will gain insight.

He says in the same sutra that it helps to avoid wrong ideas and the wrong methods, and go for methods that produce fruits. So, the esults depend on the methods, how well they are used, and for how long, among other factors. They include "right view, right aspiration, right speech, right action, right mode of livelihood, right endeavour, right mindfulness, right concentration."

During in-between meditations it might be fit to memorise good ideas and formulations that help the living. In Tibetan Buddhism it is called lojong. From older yoga sources similar ways are described too, for example verses about sanyama in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. "Different strokes for different folks" is a slogan to bear in mind as well.

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Maturation and Education

Maturation is growth from deep within, often unrecognised at any moment. Education is a twofold attempt of upbringing and schooling children and young ones. There is informal education out of school and in the schoolyard and other environments, and formal education that often results in grades. On the one hand some forms of public schooling seeks to tend the plants, and on the other hand make them fit a market or demands of a social nature. A twofold purpose, but the adaptation to society and its demand rank above the self-unfoldment needs most often. Homeschooling and Waldorf education allow for richer growth from within, generally speaking.

Dreams can be instructive

Speaking of seeds, sprouts and tender plants in the mind soil or soul: Getting into significant ideas and exploring advancing openness could be fine for students. To get in touch with your own basic guts and dreams too. Craig Hamilton-Parker points out in the introduction of his unpaginated book, The Hidden Meaning of Dreams (1999):

Before you can work with your dreams, you need to . . . remember them. . .

If you use the methods described ... to capture a dream, you're soon going to want to decipher its meaning . . . this may appear difficult because you're confronted with what appears to be a load of nonsense. But it's not. Your thoughts, ideas, worries, hopes, and fears are all represented by symbols, metaphors, and images within your dreams . ..

Psychology has many useful theories that can help you understand what your dreams are trying to tell you about your emotional state, ambitions, fears, and so on. . . .

There are no limits to the mind's ability to generate an . . . abundance of dreams. (Hamilton-Parker 1999, introduction, passim)

Sigmund Freud believed that in sleep the ego relaxed and could no longer adjudicate between the conflicting forces of the id and super-ego. His follower Carl Gustav Jung in time broke with him and went on to believe that the unconscious offered ways to inner wholeness and healing, that dreams gave access to these positive energies. (Hamilton-Parker 1999, introduction) [Carl Jung on dreams and dreamwork]

We all dream; we do not understand our dreams, yet we act as if nothing strange goes on in our sleep minds, strange at least by comparison with the logical, purposeful doings of our minds when we are awake. - Erich Fromm, once a follower of Freud.

Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens. - C. G. Jung

Sleep and dreams are necessary for survival. According to the Vedas, during dreamless sleep a spiritual person may "reach the Brahma-loka", that is, transcend or merge with Supreme Brahman for a while or a little longer and in that state perceive things to come in the fabric of time, and further, their dreams may reveal facets of reality. (Hamilton-Parker 1999, introduction)

The author says that rather typically, ghosts you dream of, represent those aspects of yourself that you fear, and that dream giants can represent awe-inspiring powers. If you dream of being an invalid you may feel that something has robbed you of your ability or self-confidence, and so on. Many kinds of interpretations are possible, for dreams are seamed scenes for the individual, reflecting his or her state, conditions and all that.

Keeping a dream diary near your bed is a help to recall dreams. And learning Jungian methods of drawing impressive scenes from dreams and note the key elements it the diary, could help you toward getting to terms with recurrent dream themes you host.

From the old Hebrew tradition

The old Hebrew tradition is that one has to honour Yahweh, which means "I Am" (etc.) above all. If "heaven is within you" and God is in heaven, it suggests that the way to please one's self, or Atman, is not to get stupefied in front of works of art - various man-made gods and the like, but rather pay attention to tall dreams.

Much history shows that contrary to this tradition, seemingly good ideas and practices that persons are fed with and fostered on through ignominous education, get well accepted in the socal spheres without deserving it, and get more or less discarded too. Some ideas that are repeated, make victims overly aggressive, bad-tempered and complaining. Some also prove ruinous, not just preposterous.

Against low-levelled thinking, some sound dreaming may do. Dreaming has been found to be necessary for health, no matter what you recall from the dream periods that occur each night. Some scientists and artists see that dreams have held solutions they were looking for. "Let us learn to dream, gentlemen, and then we may perhaps find the truth," stated the Nobel laureate Kekulé, after a dream put him on the track to a solution he was searching for.

If you don't feel up to it yet, and perhaps not "crowned with honour and glory" either (see Hebrews 2:7), you could still benefit from sound dream theories or from learning how to go about interpret dreams. It may not interfere negatively with what you otherwise do - and it may signal in tall ways that corrective measures are needed. The more violent the repeated dreams, the more urgent the message within them - perhaps. Interpreting the dreams you have, is largely individually based, although there are many common parts to count in too. Dream page: [Link]

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Some Other Points

Getting within

It generally helps to be on guard no matter what and how. "Every animal in the jungle" learns it or dies.

One should beware of conformity that breeds hypocricy, and things based on hypocricy of others. Hypocricy deranges people without their knowing.

Those who trust too much, have not learnt to ask for evidence or to believe as little as possible, and may be in for hard times because of their trust. [Kalama Sutta] Fine benefits can be had from sound scepticism and doubt well cultivated. [Doubt to your benefit]

For example, do you doubt that the Vatican Council, which is the highest authority in the Catholic Church, exhorts all members to recognise, preserve and promote the good things in Hinduism and Buddhism? The answer is "Yes!" If you doubt it, ask for evidence. Here it is: [◦Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions. Nostra Aetate].

The training session is over.

Trust is not to be looked down on, though, nor is rightful shares and roles in interactions either. But play it safe. Submitting much through trust may spell disasters to come. Trust, gullibility and credulity make beginners ensnared and victims of plots. The long-range results may include life lies to some.

Thus, it may pay to "Look before you leap." For example, a famous guru who comes in the name of god-masters in Hinduism and decrees he has a particular dispensation with Jesus Christ behind it too, talks considerably against certain forewarnings by Jesus against (a) having many masters, (b) other masters than him, (c), false Christs, (d) misleading, ravenous wolves in sheep's clothing - it is all in the Bible.

Bizarre or frivolous claims against ponderous evidence have to be handled well before the propagators strut. Sectarians may decide wilfully to smear the person or persons behind fit and fair material and distort like hell, use loose and negative inunendos and the like - they were not better in the first place. Such rascals have to go for the necessary amount of fairness and skill - and if they do, it may take them out of their sect. It may be expected.

A worst case scenario should be taken into account before you commit.

Rabbinic at its best goes against hypocricy.

Contents


Questioning public education, Literature  

Bowman, John. The Complete Guide to Doing Montessori Early Learning Activities at Home. 2nd ed. Bradenton, FL: Montessori at Home!, 2011.

Gupta, Mahendranath. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Tr. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942. On-line.

Hamilton-Parker, Craig. The Hidden Meaning of Dreams. Ill. ed. New York: Sterling, 1999.

Mason, Paul. The Biography of Guru Dev: The Life and Teachings of Swami Brahmananda Saraswati, Shankaracharya of Jyotirmath (1941-53). Vol 2. Penzance, Cornwall: Premanand, 2009.

Pitamic, Maja. Teach Me to Do It Myself: Montessori Activities for You and Your Child. Hauppauge, NY: Barron's Educational Series, 2004.

Seldin, Tim. How to Raise an Amazing Child: The Montessori Way to Bring up Caring, Confident Children. London: Dorling Kindersley, 2007. -- A second edition from 2017 has appeared.

Seldin, Tim, and Paul Epstein. The Montessori Way: An Education for Life. Sarasota, FL: The Montessori Foundation, 2003.

Suddhasatwananda, Swami, Thus Spake Sri Rama. 3rd ed. Madras: Ramakrishna Math, 1985.

Watner, Carl, ed. Homeschooling: A Hope for America. Gramling, SC: The Voluntaryists, 2010.

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