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Purpose of education


According to Aristotle the distinguishing feature of man is his moral sense. Man learns from his experiences and from experiences of others; he knows what is good and what is not good. He is capable of revising his judgements and creating his tastes whenever he does not agree with the circumstances of life. It is because of this reason that education became a part of the training of man.
In the earlier times man learnt by trial and error method. He tried certain things and then adopted them as a way of life. Latter on the experiences of the other people were found to be more intense and informative and so they were utilized for course of their life. With the passage of the time, education became necessary for a good and civilized life.
But education has always been prostituted for political purpose or personal gains. Some of the political philosophers emphasized a complete control over education so that the thinking of a man should be moulded right from the Childhood. Fascists in Italy believed in giving a particular type of education to the children so that they may not question the authority of the people in power. Similarly in most of the communist countries education is meant to make the people to develop faith in communism.
Some others think that education should be job-oriented, that is education should qualify a person to take up a profession or a job. They have been changing the formal structure of education in order to make school education self-sufficient. Education should not be forgetting jobs because this is not the real purpose of education. We should not commit the mistake of identifying education with training. To practical purpose education in some countries is simply meant to collect and co-relate information. In some cases it does not develop some critical faculties and critical mind. But even this cannot be the real purpose of education.
The real purpose of education lies in disciplining our reasoning and emotions. If our reasoning is not properly channelized we are reduced to the status of animals. If our reasoning is not properly controlled it may go wrong. Similarly emotion and reason should have their due share in determining the personality of man otherwise man becomes a lopsided creature. Cold calculating reason makes us almost computers whereas free play of emotions reduce us to animals.
Emotions must be bridled and reason must be directed in the right direction. Study of science develops our reasoning faculties whereas the study of arts cultivates our emotions. For example, by studying poems our emotions are modulated and by studying the laws of Newton, our wild imagination is properly limited. In other words, without a proper combination of reason and emotion it is not possible to have a balanced personality. This will also make us good citizens of the state and suitable members of the society. The real purpose of the education can be achieved if it is not tagged with any motive except education.