5th September is Teacher’s Day in India in memory of the greatest educator, philosopher and the second President of India, Dr.S.Radhakrishnan. There are many definitions to a great teacher; but I believe an exceptional teacher is one who encourages us to fulfil one of the most fundamental needs of a human being- the need to communicate. I remember a lot of teachers who have taught me through the years and I must say that the outstanding and the inspiring were the exception than the rule. Those who have been educated in India like me would know how life at school is. We do remember teachers who like hungry dragons swept on us for talking, dragging our shoes and not being able to answer a question as given in the text book. I was a truant and I was constantly in the black list of my mentors, the disciplinarians cast a severe look on me the very first day of the academic year and the gentle souls gave me a kind smile hoping someday I would indeed improve. But the teachers whom I love to this day were the ones who let the best in me out and never kept me suppressed. Irrespective of the subjects they taught, they asked the sleeping bird in me to realise that it had wings and asked me to stretch it and fly up above. They let me soar high above the platitudes and truisms to find my own Neverland. The best in Man is his ever fantastic imagination; you need a thriving imagination to live happily and be yourself. Hard work does follow, but work without imagination will make life dreary. I am thankful to those who let me be myself and allowed me to ask stupid questions and give stammering answers, to argue and debate to my mind’s content to finally find out my own truths, to speak and write a lot of nonsense, to act, to sing and play, to those who with their disappointed faces made me realise my first lessons of right and wrong- I am thankful to all those who loved me inspite of myself and cared to acknowledge that I was important and I would be somebody in life. For you who corrected my mistakes with love, for you who encouraged my passions with love, for you who pulled me up with love, I owe all that I am to you. You have proved that you can make something useful of every little soul that comes your way. My love from the bottom of my heart to you, my Teacher!
Posted by Francis Kuriakose
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