Why education was not given to all the people in the past?

It is true that certain specialized knowledge was not given to all the people in the ancient India. But, it is false to infer that education was not given to the masses! They were all educated but, of course they might not be aware of reading and writing. Knowing ‘script’ is just a part of education and not the whole of it.

The ways of the wise men are different and are not easily understandable to the mental-dwarfs. The same is the case with us. We fail to understand the ancient sages and ‘Rishis’. They used to give things [including education] ONLY to the deserved people and had the talent to know which one suits which thing. Unfortunately, we don’t have that gift in spite of all our advances. In the ancient India, the sages classified the people into different categories [castes] and gave the education concerned to their field of functioning. It was their point that all types of educations are not needed to all people.

At present too, all are not learning the work of a barber or doctor or engineer or layer or carpenter or cobbler. When we are in need of certain operation we are hiring the concerned worker like going to a barber for hair cutting and the like. The same was the case with education in the ancient India. If a learned man was in need they will hire one and this applies to reading and writing as well.

By birth a person is given a profession, the profession of his father and there was no need to hunt or search for livelihood. Father and mother at home were used to teach their children of their profession.

Certain people are not given some specialized knowledge but, all people were given the basic education that includes morels. In other words the man making education was given to all and the specialized education was given only to the concerned individuals. All were not taught to read and write but, the common masses were aware of lots of things from the scriptures. They had the knowledge of the scriptures but, of course they were not taught in the schools as in the present era. The dissemination of knowledge followed totally a different route than the present class room methods. For example ‘hari katha’ [telling stories, scriptures to masses] and ‘Natakas’ [enacting plays] are some of the means of educating the people apart from many others. The temples of India too were the places of leering and they followed different ways of teachings to the masses.

Even the ‘women’ were not neglected in the olden days as many moderns think. They were also given common education alike the men and were treated in a more humane and dignified manner than the treatment given to the modern day women.

They were sharing their works and the knowledge was given to them accordingly. No one was interfering with the business of others. All were used to follow certain common principles and they were leading a harmonious and happy life than the modern day individuals.

Finally, it is true that they did hide certain specialized knowledge from certain people. Knowledge is a powerful tool and in the hands of unsuitable persons it turns dangerous. Imagine what would happen if a person like Bin Laden learns the atomic bomb technology. This is just an example of giving the knowledge to the unsuitable persons. If not to this extent, certain knowledge in the hands of the unsuitable/ inappropriate will cause trouble in the society.

So, due to these and other reasons of their own, the ancients indeed denied certain kinds of knowledge to different people but, they gave the general and basic education to all without any restrictions and prejudices.

Another thing is that the common man thinks in a selfish way. So, if certain types of educations are given to the common people, they will misuse it for their selfish motives and create troubles to other persons or in the society or for themselves too. Hence, certain advanced educations were not given to all but, ONLY to the deserved and matured individuals. 

In the modern society, the common man’s life will not take a step without education. If you want to work or not you need ‘education’ otherwise we can’t live in the society. If you want to depend on others – you need education, either to be an employer or an employee or in other ways too. But, the ancient people were masters of their own life, almost all of them doing their hereditary business and not working under others.

The majority of the modern people are ‘cunning’ hence to safe guard ourselves among the cunning people we need lots of education. But, the ancient people were all innocent beings with no or relatively no cunningness and the living was very easy there.

Moreover the ancients are ‘heart oriented’ people so they didn't think much of education. But, contrary to them we are ‘brain oriented’ people and we are concerned more with the brain oriented thing, ‘education’ and criticism.

So, ‘education’ in the modern sense was not a matter of concern in the ancient days.

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