A Day to Celebrate our Teachers!
by Elizabeth Menon

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A Day to Celebrate our Teachers!

Today, 5 September, is 'Teachers' Day', the day we celebrate our Teachers! There is another special reason why '5 September' is celebrated as the 'Teachers' Day' – this was the day when Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan was born (5 September 1888 – 17 April 1975), who was a great Philosopher and a Statesman, who became the first Vice-President of India (13 May 1952-12 May 1962) and the 2nd President of India from13 May 1962 to 13 May 1967, and was honoured with 'Bharat Ratna' in 1954. He was a professor at the Calcutta University for 11 years and at the University of Oxford in England for 16 years – he was bestowed with the Honorary Membership of the Royal Order of Merit in 1963. He believed in 'Advaita Vedanta' and has famously said “Teachers should be the best minds in the country”, and quite rightly, his birthday on 5 September is celebrated in India as 'Teachers' Day' since 1962, to honour him and our teachers!

We start learning from the moment we make our entry into this world, first from the 'Mother,' then from the 'Father' and then the 'Teacher', and all three are considered 'Teachers' by the dictum, 'Matha, Pitha, Guru (Mother, Father and Teacher), the 'Holy Trinity of Teaching'! The learning curve starts in the womb, a world filled only with water while the baby is in the mother's womb, when the 'Maternal Teaching' was through the placenta in the form of oxygen and nutrients and the baby learned to grow, which continued till the connection was severed at birth when the cord was cut, and then on, it's a different kind of teaching, sort of a 'One to One' between mother and her baby, and gradually the father makes his entry when the combined sessions start! The 'Guru''s teaching is on a different plane, building our strength in every direction possible, but the first teachers continue to part with their wisdom even after the offsprings become adults and beyond!
Where would we all be, without our teachers, 'Matha, Pitha, Guru'! I remember all my teachers in my schools and colleges, especially my teachers in Armed Forces Medical College in Pune, the Temple of a Medical College, who made me what I am today! I salute you all, starting with my Mother and Father, my 'Aasan', the one who taught me the 'Hari Sree' and all those from whom I have learned over the years and still learning, from their books and writing – sorry for not mentioning any names!

Let's Celebrate Our Teachers and show/feel our Gratitude on this day, 5 September, more than any other day, and feel honoured just thinking of the great Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan!

© E Menon



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