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Date posted: January 2, 2012

The former President, Mr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam

I was happy to see the article “I only want to enjoy my childhood, ma” by Inumella Sesikala (Open Page, Nov. 8). I liked the article very much, which is a dream of every child. Creativity of children has to come out from the classroom. Some of us had such opportunities. Our children should go to primary school only at the age of six. Till then, we have to promote creativity of the children with great teachers and an innovative classroom environment.

Yesterday, when I was reading the book Spiritual Intelligence, The Ultimate Intelligence by Danah Zohar and Ian Marshall, I came across the poem, “ The Student’s prayer.”

“The young son of a Chilean biologist, Umberto Maturana, became unhappy at school because he felt his teachers were making it impossible for him to learn. They wanted to teach him what they knew, rather than drawing out what he needed to learn.

As a result Maturana wrote “ The Student’s Prayer”, of which this translation is an abridged version. It perfectly expresses the spiritually intelligent individual’s response to the conforming pressures of parents, teachers, bosses or the crowd.

The Student’s Prayer

Don’t impose on me what you know,

I want to explore the unknown

And be the source of my own discoveries.

Let the known be my liberation, not my slavery.

The world of your truth can be my limitation;

Your wisdom my negation.

Don’t instruct me; let’s walk together.

Let my richness begin where yours ends.

Show me so that I can stand

On your shoulders.

Reveal yourself so that I can be

Something different.

You believe that every human being

Can love and create.

I understand, then, your fear

When I ask you to live according to your wisdom.

You will not know who I am

By listening to yourself.

Don’t instruct me; let me be.

Your failure is that I be identical to you.”

I thought, there is connectivity among young hearts even beyond ocean — “I only want to enjoy my childhood, ma” and “The Student’s Prayer.” 

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