Thursday, September 16, 2021
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Why should Indians learn their past heritage?


A large number of Indians seem to have a tendency to conveniently brush the past under the carpet. They don’t see the need to study history. They don’t understand the need to know our past. They talk of concentrating on the present, on what can be done today. They talk of looking ahead, into the promising possibilities of the future. To them, looking to the future is progressive, look at the past is regressive.

What such people forget is that the present does not exist in isolation of the past, just as the future does not exist in isolation of the present. The past, present and future are in a continuum. One leads to the other. What we are today is a result of what happened in the past and what will happen tomorrow will be a direct result of policies and actions that are happening today.

It makes no sense to delink from the past just because it is uncomfortable, or it seems depressing. To delink from the past is to live in amnesia. To justify this delinking from the past is the worst kind of escapism. It is only when we find the courage to look at it, however painful it might be, and to acknowledge it, examine it and learn from it, that we truly find the way forward. And we truly get in touch with our own abilities. We become living, breathing links in this hoary continuum of the oldest living civilization that holds in its deep womb the answers to world peace and harmony and coexistence.

As Michael Crichton says, “If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know that it’s part of a tree.”

Sahana Singh relates her dilemma when faced with Indians who do not want to look at the past and makes a case for why Indians should learn their past heritage in her Srijan Talk on “Educational Heritage Of Ancient India”, a relevant snippet of which is presented here.

To watch the full Srijan Talk by Sahana Singh, click on the following link:

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