Do Schools Kill Creativity? – Sir Ken Robinson with Sadhguru At Los Angeles

Do Schools Kill Creativity? – Sir Ken Robinson with Sadhguru At Los Angeles

We are creatures that grow from small beginnings and what we grow into depends on several factors one it’s the conditions that surround us and one is the extent to which we engage with the life within us for the past probably 20 years more education has become a strategic issue around the world you know when I was a student nobody’s very interested in what was happening another country is an education I mean I was growing up in England we didn’t really care what was happening in Finland people in America weren’t that bothered about what was happening in Spain but now government’s our education has become a strategic issue and it’s become a strategic issue because of the nature and pace of globalization and education has become seen as a process to encourage competition and economic success between countries and it’s led to the most corrupt and sterile form of education you can imagine for our children our children are suffering now from high levels of stress than ever before more and more kids are not graduating from high school I hate the expression is hate a strong word I hate the expression dropout in America currently something like 30% of kids who start the ninth grade don’t complete the twelfth grade and that every single child has a reason for that I mean there are trends but what’s interesting not the statistics it’s the reasons individuals have but you know if you’re running any kind of enterprise and you lost 30 percent of your clients every year you might wonder whether it was the stupid clients or your enterprise and to call use kids dropouts makes it sound like they failed the system and it’s much more accurate to say the system has failed them because I don’t know any kid who doesn’t want to learn you know children are born with immense possibilities I mean infinite possibilities and they have a massive appetite to learn I mean think what happens in the first 18 months of life children learn to speak little babies in the first eight months learnt to speak and nobody teaches them you don’t if you’re a parent you didn’t teach your child to speak it’s far too complicated you know you wouldn’t have the time and they wouldn’t have the patience it’s not like you set your child out of the age of 18 months and say look we need to talk you know or or more specifically you do and this is how it’s going to work you know you probably notice your mother and I’ve been making all these noises fast 18 months well some of these are names of things we call them nouns they’re other noises we make they’re not names of things they’re names things you can do with things we call them verbs if you change the noise you can say what you will do and what you have done and don’t worry about the subjunctive nobody gets it you know it doesn’t work like that you know kids absorb language through their skin you nudge them you correct them you know you they mimic you but you don’t speak you don’t teach them and by the way if they grow up in a in a home whether a six languages spoken I’ll just learn all of those kids love to learn the problem they have is with education which is the time when we start to decide systematically to teach them things and many of the rhythms of Education are obstructive to the natural rhythms of learning so my premise is that children are born with immense natural capacities they have a tremendous appetite to learn and education has become the problem when you say what is the aim of education and I’d put it this way that I’m done I’d love to know what sänger has to say about this coming from a different culture perspective but my Technol is exist that all all of us are born into two worlds know that there’s a world that existed before you came into it it was there before you were it’s the world of historical circumstances it’s the world that existed whether or not you exist there would be there when you’ve gone according to where your metaphysics take you but there’s another world that exists only because you exist it’s the world that came into being when you did it’s the world of your private consciousness the world of yourself the world of witches once said there’s only one set of footprints but the world of your own anxiety is hopes and aspirations and talents and fears and ambitions and so on education is filled with the outer world and most of the problems that children experience are to do with their inner world so as I see it the role of Education is to help children understand the world around them that’s clearly essential and also the world within them so that they can become in a compassionate fulfilled and engaged individuals and for me the great deficit in education in the moment is extent to which we fail to engage the child in a world and recognize how much they could become if we invest enough of our time effort and own conscience at standing after what their possibilities are I’m glad that there’s no perfect school anywhere because this aspiration for perfection is very debt oriented it’s something that most people have missed the nature of life is it’s never perfect only death is perfect never has that happened in proof imperfectly never has life happened perfectly if school is about life then there is no perfect school having said that as someone said not him somebody from England no I mean I’m seeing I’m seeing him as a representation of England someone said that education is a necessary evil it is a necessary evil because there is a resident evil in the car in the world we have very convoluted aspirations in the sense largely most part of the education is trying to manufacture cogs for the larger machine that we have built our children are the fuel unfortunately we have to put them into some slot where they’ll function well and when we see the world world is no more about people the world is about the economic engine that we are driving it’s become bigger than us we have to keep the engine going waves get to stop it for a moment we have to keep going now the problem is this that we have created a world if our economies fail we will be depressed if our economies succeed we’ll be damned for good I feel it’s better you’re depressed now talking about a screw as a way of manufacturing cogs for the machine there are many ways to do it every nation has its own system if I have to shape you into your particular shape that you must fit into a particular machine it’s a Croyle process but now we can’t let the machine fail it needs spare parts constantly it has to absorb and humanity is the spare parts so our children are the fuel and the machine parts which go into this to run the larger machine that’s one aspect so this is why I read rest education in three different dimensions which people around me are still trying to grasp why these three different things there is one form of Education which is called issue Vidya I think they might have showed something about that this is for the rural masses in India where the problem is they’re in a economic and social fit with they cannot get out by themselves the only ladder for them is education employment generating education but there are reasonably well-to-do people where they might have gone through that in the previous generation but this generation need not think about how to earn my living they have to look at how to expand who they are so we have is a home school which caters to that this because this kind of education costs money so only people who can afford it can do that cost money means not like how it costs here by Indian standards it costs money and there’s another form of Education where people are not interested in serving this machine or that machine they want individuals to blossom so we have issues some scrotie where there is no academic education of any kind they only learn music dance art sensitive language calorie which is a very the mother of all martial arts and classical dance classical music English language is a passport of the world so these children are a treat to watch this is how children should have been just to give you a glimpse of what it is at the age of 15 for three years they go into monastic life compulsively they must go on compulsively they must come out at 18 they cannot continue they’ll take a monastic life for three years but after three years they cannot continue they have to discontinue that and get back to normal life this is for discipline and focus but you can’t make the entire world like that this is an ideal to work towards the idea of this kind of schooling is just to develop human body and human brain without any intention without any intention as to what they should become they can become whatever they want only thing is human body and human mind should grow to its fullest capability and attention is the main thing an indiscriminate and unprejudiced attention is what we’re trying to evolve in the children that they learn to pay attention to everything the same way that you don’t divide the world as something as good and something as bad something high something low something divine something devil something wildy something sacred no you learn to pay the same attention to everything this is the fundamental of this form of Education what will they do what will they do is the aspiration so I guaranteed them one thing 12 years if you enter the school the commitment is for 12 years you have to 6 if you come 18 of you you can leave so they asked me what will the children do I said one thing unless you do we will not give you a certificate at the end yes it’s a good word I said did anybody ask me what is my certification only in the American Embassy they asked me so I said no certification because doors in the world may open little slowly for you but when they open they stay open because not because of qualification but back competence you open doors it is just that everybody is in a mad race your children should do better than your neighbors children this is a disease I agree I don’t know you’re unqualified by the way that’s the I actually have to go the only qualification I have and that is the only striving in my life how to remain uneducated because this is the biggest problem why education has become a problem in the world ease people become who they are in the world because of what they have gathered this is a very unfortunate situation right now whether it is material things or knowledge whatever information they have gathered it makes them who they are now who you are and what you have gathered are two different things this is the distinction we are trying to bring into child’s life in our schools whatever you may gather it doesn’t matter what you gather is just information and things information is a thing by itself it should not determine who you are who you are is determined by a different process what you gather by a different process so when I keep repeating to everybody some lot of these people feel ashamed my guru is uneducated they try to say no he only says that he’s really educated what I am saying is whatever I have gathered does not determine who I am because the biggest problem in the world is this from the day you are born all kinds of people are trying to teach you something that’s not worked in their life I think if I can say one of the major problems agree with all of that is that we didn’t have systems of mass education as we know them now pretty much until the middle of the nineteenth century you know they were invented made up yes it was part of the Industrial Revolution and it was associated with the big move from the countryside into the cities to provide a workforce for the industrial economy it’s very straightforward from that point of view it was a massive piece of social engineering it’s why the system is shaped the way it was we needed a majority of people to do blue-collar work which is why we had a broad base of elementary education and a relatively small group of people to do clerical administrative work in suits which is why we had a small university sector and the system was created that way in Britain you know when I was at school at the age of eleven while we all took an exam I’m sure Ian would remember it it’s called the eleven plus and it determined at the age of eleven which type of school he went to at which high school the grammar school or a Secondary Modern School it was ready an IQ test but people thought it was a blood test you know that told them how smart they were and actually was just a capacity to do that type of test and like a driving test you could get better at it and and I mean a lot of people were trained to do it and they got through it but the consequence of it is that we created this kind of system where there were a small group of winners and they did very well by it but the vast majority didn’t and part of the problem as I see it is that the system education is burdened with certain ideological assumptions one of them is a whole set of ideas not intelligence so the whole ideal of Western education is to get people to University and therefore and that’s because the universities abrogated the system to their own purposes and therefore we have in the system this deep deeply mistaken assumption that the that intelligence is the same thing as academic ability an academic I believe is very important but it’s a very specific capacity the capacity to do certain types of deductive reasoning certain types of critical discourse but the upshot is that if you’re not very good at that your thought not to be very smart because the truth is if you create a very narrow conception of ability you create a very big conception of disability and inability I just said that that’s we’re doing personal stories for a second I’m from Liverpool in England and I mention one thing I went to school across the city center from the Napoleon ship which is worth Paul McCartney was it school I didn’t know him then I’m sure some of you people do know him quite well but I his I wrote a book a few years ago called the element how finding your passion changes everything and I interviewed lots of people for for the book one of whom was Paul McCartney and I tell you this because I think it’s very important you don’t leave here today unaware of the fact that I hang out with with Paul McCartney I know Paul as I call him with this was him I asked him I interviewed him for the book and I said did you enjoy music at school and he said no he hated it I said did your music teacher think you had any Talent he said no already he does doesn’t he and then one of the other people in the same music program in the same school was George Harrison the lead guitarist of the popular music group The Beatles and and I said did any did your music teach you think George had any talent he said no not really I said look would this be a reasonable comment that there was this one music teacher in Liverpool in the late 1950s who had half the Beatles in his class and he missed it you said yes well it’s a bit of an oversight is it anybody’s stand out in your class this year mr. Wilcox not really no be leaps forward frankly what is it if you create this narrow view of ability then you automatic to do all this other stuff I mean in you sank you may remember this but in the 50s there was a big polio epidemic you know that ran right through America and Europe and and I got it you know as one of the the I’m one of seven kids I was the only one of the family to get it and the only one in the street to get it you know despite my vigorous attempts to cross infect the entire neighborhood you know I thought yeah you’re coming down with me you know but anyway I was in hospital and I I end up going to into special ed for from as five till eleven and that’s what they used to do so so I was in a school which had lots of kids with polio lots of kids with cerebral palsy partially sighted blind deaf kids our sits next to one kid in school who had a really bad case of cerebral palsy and it’s a terrible thing to deal with you know because if you know if you don’t have it if you can just to move your arms around you just have to relax muscles and contract them you don’t think about it but if you’ve got cerebral palsy or affected by it you’re fighting your body all the time so you’re doing this type of stuff and and if you try to speak and it’s affected your face it’s you sound as if you’re talking nonsense and and of course you may talk be talking absolute sin this is just you can’t get the sounds out and so the guy sitting next to me in one my finally at the school couldn’t grip a pencil in his fingers but he could grip it in his toes and he had beautiful writing better than mine actually what’s his handwriting we don’t know we don’t hurt but them but the point is we’re surrounded by people in this I was saying him in my classroom then that school was like the barroom scene from Star Wars you know there are kind of people in various degrees of decrepitude you know being brought in but nobody was interested in what people’s disabilities seemed to be what were interesting was what they were good at and if they were smart or interesting or what and the fact is that many of the things that they had devot with weren’t what really define them but because there’s this narrow view of ability if you have trouble writing or speaking it’s assumed that you have some associated mental incapacity which is why you get this big conception of disability surrounding it but if you reframe the conception of abilities suddenly discover all these talents and possibilities their inherent all the time and I mention it because it’s a dramatic example it’s special that is to me of what happens all the time in general education all kinds of kids are told they’ve got problems who don’t have them they’re created by the system and it’s the problem of the system that we need to to address that a few reframe ability that all of these difficulties that people seem to be suffering from suddenly disappear if you find the things they’re good at if you do as Sanger is suggesting if you create an environment which is holistic which is addressing your spiritual development your physical development which recognize that human life is not linear its organic and it will take many different courses then you have a completely different setting additions under which people will flourish and it’s the fact that this the conditions themselves which are industrial in character create problems for kids which they then begin to rail against so we now have a system based on competition narrow view of ability and one in which people being medicated to stay with the program they’re being pathologized for losing interest in what is essentially very boring stuff we sit them down all day long and wonder why they fidget and there are different ways of doing it better ways I mean for me it’s it’s as plain as day really you know education is not one of those things like an incurable disease and we can’t figure out what to do we know what to do in education it’s about taking this thing to scale but taking it to scale doesn’t mean replicating it because as you say there’s no perfect school actually there are no tools toast to schools alike but like there are no two individuals alike but there are principles you can apply everywhere and getting those principles in place to me is the big challenge now as we’re looking for an evolution of a human being through the education system the education system should be always an evolving process by itself when we think in terms of a perfect school we’re thinking of again fixing it somewhere that’s what needs to change as one can develop because can mention this IQ test I’m saying as one can develop muscle by doing certain things with the body one can develop intelligence the fundamental aspect of developing intelligence is right now there are some studies I know I don’t know you must tell me I’m not an expert on these things we’d say if a child goes through 20 years of formal education and comes out with a PhD they say 70% of intelligence is irrevocably destroyed because yet I have a PhD I leave that to you Ken so essentially what’s being said by the studies is we’re mistaking information for education by deadening the brain with too much information definitely the possibility of intelligence is lost this is why I said what we accumulate and who we are should remain separate Who I am should not be influenced by water have accumulated whether the material things or information or impressions this is of the world I would like to little differ and what was said in terms of child’s inner world and external world what we are mistaking to be inner world is still external in my perception because a child’s fears ambitions aspirations are all external inspired or infected I would say without side situation it is not natural aspiration life natural our aspiration of life if you look at it if you leave someone uninfluenced from outside the natural aspiration is always to expand not to become less but if you look at today’s form of education because it’s purely intellect education there is no other dimension of intelligence in it and I think in this part of the world there is a serious mistake that intellect has been mistaken for intelligence intellect your intellect can function only with the backing of your memory or in other words your intellect functions with accumulated information if I take away all your memory your intellect is quite useless by itself but there are the dimensions of intelligence within you which does not need the support of memory if education systems do not focus on activating these dimensions of intelligence you will find factory workers you will not find a genius in every home what you need is an innovative intelligence today when I say when I use the word innovation you think developing a new i8 form I am NOT talking about that maybe we can develop a world without a phone we don’t know what’s an innovation innovation need not necessarily mean improvement of what we have little by little little by little yes that is also needed but that is not what life is looking for people are not any better with phone without phone maybe we are doing more things but equally confused equally struggling as it was before so the point is not about what we have gathered what we have gathered is useful in creating comfort and convenience for the world what we have gathered is not useful for creating well-being for ourselves and for the world if well-being has to happen we have to access dimensions of intelligence which are not intellectual because intellect cannot function without accumulated information if you function always out of accumulated information you naturally get identified with it so depending upon what you have accumulated you become that kind because you have become that kind another kind and your kind always goes into conflict if the purpose of education is to expand horizons of individual human beings you can see that’s definitely not happening the more educated somebody becomes as people get educated they really can’t get along with anybody they not so educated people can live together hundred people can live together once you become educated you become isolated because this is the nature of the intellect because you’re employing only one wheel out of four wheels of your car it is like that it’s like suppose you’re driving on the street and you are some kind of an expert you drive on just two wheels what must you do you got a car for that you driving just on two wheels maybe you’re good at it but nobody else on the street want to drive with you they will all stop if you’re driving on four wheels everybody will drive with you so the other dimensions of intelligence have to come otherwise the moment you get intellectual unknowingly you send somewhere you exclude the world so in a way the way of our education has been to butcher the existence into tiny fragments and we’re trying to fix the fragments it’s not going to work like that if education has to become holistic there are systemic problems are not saying no but more than the systems the people who deliver the system if we can upgrade them in a huge way every system can be made to work good I have seen in India the most rudimentary system is the state education I have been there to these schools before we went in to starting our own rural schools I just wanted to see what’s right or wrong with these guys I found some schools are like as good as pigs day in terms of what they’re producing some schools same stuff but they’re doing wonderful work so it’s the people who deliver that whatever the system if you upgrade the people who deliver this to the best people see if we are interested in the future generations of our humanity the best people in the world must go into teaching but right now the lowest grade of people are going because everything is determined by economics how much are you paid that’s how you go so this is where what I am saying earlier is important what you accumulate should not determine who you are as long as that is so the economic values will rule as long economic values rule is the muscle which rules not the intelligence we tend to measure what we value and you were talking about standardized tests the so much of teaching and learning is about relationships that imply intimacy and caring and witnessing and seeing one another with the teacher I know you have a story about the teacher and the doctor who noticed that the little girl is fidgeting was actually in the master so how do we is it about training the teachers or is it supporting the teachers in a different way and how do we create inspiring teachers or give them the room to help foster all the different types of intelligence there are excuse me there are several strands to education obviously and one of them is the curriculum I’m talk about organized education the Mindi people learn on their own and and can learn informally but if we talk about organized education as in the scores that Sanger is describing all the schools you’ve been involved in there is a curriculum which is what we want people to learn so a big part of this argument is we need a different sort of curriculum at the moment in America for example we have a very narrow curriculum that’s based primarily on fairly impoverished view of science technology and math I same porush because math can be a fantastically invigorating interesting discipline years ago I asked a professor pure mathematics so with the university I worked at how you would assess a PhD in pure mathematics his intelligence had gone at this point obviously only 70% at least 70% with him but the small shard of it that was left I said I said to him how would you assess a PhD in pure math that’s actually first I said him how long is a PhD in pure math cuz I’ve never seen one and he said he’d seen one recently there was twenty pages long you know like 20 pages of math after page aperture of math with equals at the end and and I imagine I’ve never seen one so so I said well how would you judge one I mean presumed it’s right you know you’d be annoyed with you spent five years doing a PhD in pure math comes back wrong see me and he said yeah they’re normally right well how do you judge one and he said they’re two criteria there’s originality in other words it’s how creative it is I’d like to talk a bit more about creativity in a bed.but but it’s about whether it breaks new ground but the second I loved he said its aesthetic I said why does that matter he said because mathematicians believe that mathematics is the purest way we have of describing some of the truths of nature and since nature is inherently beautiful the more elegant the proof the more likely it is to be true he could be taught a sonata or a dance or a poem and cost mathematicians do feel that way to a mathematician mathematics is a beautiful abstract language like poetry and the problem people have is they don’t speak math you know if you don’t read music if you look at a page of notation what you see is a visual puzzle if you read music you don’t see a puzzle you hear a symphony and it’s the same with mathematics that mathematicians who speak math see a symphony they don’t see a puzzle and so a lot of the problem in mathematics is that it’s a literacy problem we just we have phrasebook math you know it’s like trying to caught somebody with phrasebook french it’s just not a very good idea take my word for that doesn’t work out so so um so part of it is that we have a limited conception of of these disciplines I fell in porush you and what I’m marking foreign it’s implicit I think it might understand from what I’ve read about South Korea’s schools and what used to been telling us is you need a broad curriculum that recognizes that education has a whole range of functions and that we have to address physical development spiritual development our emotional development and all of that is tied it with the a bigger view of consciousness and therefore you need a skull-cracking which has the arts the humanities the sciences technology not incidentally not in a hierarchy but equally and Co equally important it’s important for every reason and also because for some kids that’s where their real lives are going to lag that’s where they will discover themselves most fully at the second part of Education is pedagogy which is how we aim to teach people these things and I think you’re right i mean the pedagogy teaching is the most important part of it I mean the reason sadguru is having the effect is having on the world is because he’s such a brilliant teacher teaching is what this is about and teaching is not something that can be reduced to direct instruction teaching is not about telling people what to think it’s facilitating knowing it’s creating conditions where people will come to understand for themselves by probing them question them raising their curiosity probing them so they might go in a direction giving them some tools some techniques and to reduce it to a process of development of delivering information to people I I really don’t like this language has got into education of delivering the curriculum it’s like education some branch of FedEx you know it’s it it’s not that great teachers know that instruction may be part of it but the larger part of it is enabling facilitating peaking people’s curiosity engaging them and inspiring their imaginations and seeing the possibility in something it’s a very sophisticated process and one of the reasons that our education systems stumble is precisely because we’ve demeaned the profession of teaching we haven’t respected in the way that we showed we don’t compensate people in the way they need to be in order to concentrate on the job and do it properly and you know and the best teachers aren’t let’s say the ones with the most degrees on the contrary I mean I know all kinds of very smart people with degrees who can’t teach at all and it’s the big mistake that we’ve made and the third bit of Education is assessment well assessment is important I can’t think of any education process doesn’t benefit by people making assessments of it but assessments not testing assessment is about making judgments of what’s going on and whether it’s worthwhile or it isn’t and how people all great teachers do that they’re sensing whether this is happening or not you know and you don’t give people numbers for that and what’s happened to think in America is that we’ve end up with a very narrow curriculum which is being compressed because that there was a piece of legislation passed here was it 20 years gonna almost call No Child Left Behind which is one of the great pieces of modern irony and what happened was that the the government decided that America was falling behind in the international race and education and we had to the country have to compete and the children were the foot soldiers in doing this and and that the way standards were to be raised was through standardized testing it’s a terrible mistake to confuse standardization with raising standards I think but then what happened was they released this opportunity to the publishing companies I looked at this recently so on the one hand you’ve got conformity is one of the big principles of the current system well if you want conformity then you need compliance and that’s what the standardized testing movements about and this is a business that’s the point it’s a business and it’s it’s really stifling our children at the moment in 2013 we looked at some of the figures the National Football League in America which is not of course football as we know I’m a soccer friend exactly exactly and we have to call it a soccer because they appropriated the word football it’s not right tell me you’re from what you’re not from Leicester I’m from Liverpool it’s near enough you know it’s rugby isn’t it in Armour so but the NFL force a nine billion dollar business in 2013 the US domestic cinema box office in 2013 was an 11 billion dollar business in the same year the education testing and support industry in America was a 16 billion dollar business its massive you know it’s so it’s a business and and that’s what squeezing the life out of our kids that what what the we as I’m saying this is the government’s have taken the view that the way you raise standards is by focusing on the curriculum and on testing and the opposite is true the only way you improve education is by focus on teaching because in the end it’s children who are trying to learn it’s students you’re trying to get students to expand them to learn and that’s an expert personal job as soon as we lose sight the fact that this is a very personal process of cultivating interest in curiosity and talent and ability and all of those things and an awareness of the world around you if we lose sight of that and the role of teaching then we end up in the mess that we’re in but the good news is you this can be changed it is being changed but I just want to say to that and a lot of what you talked about I absolutely totally agree with I’ve mean I grew the most of it I’m not saying there’s somebody I just think it’s nonsense you know everything but but this couldn’t be more important with a PhD I expect exactly I’ll grasp all of it but it couldn’t be more urgent you see one of the figures Yuko tonight I do too is that we currently face on earth challenges which are without precedent in the history of humanity we have on the one hand you have exponential growth in technology and its impact on culture on economy on the way that people live it’s revealed all kinds of possibilities many of them miraculously good as you said there are things were capable of now we couldn’t even contemplate it 50 years ago the big problem is that our spiritual development seems to be liking a long way behind our technological capacities secondly the population now is accelerating at a point where what we were already the largest generation in the history of humanity for most of human history there’s nobody around really it took a whole of history to get to a billion people in 1800 in 1930 was too bit in 1970 is 3 billion between 1970 and 2000 the population the earth doubled from 3 to 6 billion right after the Summer of Love as it turns out you can’t tell me it’s a coincidence but and we’re now at 7-7 point four billion heading for 9 billion by the middle century and we don’t know if the earth can handle it actually we know that count there was a really good program on the BBC a few years ago about how many people can live on earth it was called how many people can live on earth and it was just presented by David Attenborough they’re very good at titles of the BBC but they concluded this that if if everybody because we all need you’ve made the same point cycler they we all need food fuel and water to survive and an air to breathe and if everybody on the earth they concluded consumed food fuel and water at the same rate or seven half billion people at the same rate as the average person in India the earth could sustain a maximum population of fifteen billion people so we’re halfway there was seven half billion people because we don’t all consumers they do in India they said if everybody in the earth consumed at the same rate is the average person in North America the earth could sustain a maximum population of 1.5 billion over five times past that that’s on current methods of production and consumption so we are heading to an abyss here and and if we don’t change course by the middle sense you’re going to need four more planets to make this work now the interesting to me is as I noticed you that these problems aren’t being caused by the rest of life on Earth they’re being caused by human beings and it’s a problem of consciousness and of creativity we’ve created these problems so we either have to by written a lot of people are thinking they’re being creative whatsit by the reproduction a lot of people are thinking they’re creative yes that’s right well that’s right you know people talk about saving the planet and I think the general conclusion a Sabrina the planets going to be fine you know the planets been around for nearly five billion years it’ll shake us off like a rash you know which we tried humanity not so good you know we’re going to stick with bacteria they’re fantastic but it’s a serious thing that there’s a very good observation by HG Wells you know the science fiction writer who said that civilization is a race between education and catastrophe and there’s some truth in that education the sense of no developing our capacities our awareness and our understanding of ourselves and of each other and of the world around us if we don’t find if we don’t take seriously these principles then were condemning our children are very very bleak future and the idea that all this can be solved through fueling the profits of the testing companies is hard to comprehend that anybody takes it seriously it’s a it’s a case of terminal myopia and so to me it’s an it’s an issue at every level it’s personal it’s about our children it’s about ourselves it’s our communities but it’s about the larger enterprise that humanity is part of and it really couldn’t be more important and the principles that I know you embody in the schools are exactly the right ones it seems to me that that’s what this is about it but there isn’t a single way to do it as you said there’s no one perfect school there’s no particular way to do circumstances very but there are some principles it’s about conditions it’s about having a holistic view of humanity of how children’s growth and potential recognizing the power of teaching and recognize that you need to get these balances right and that we can do it but it couldn’t be more importantly we get on and do it a lot of it has been articulated by Ken but what I would like to say is in terms of my experience of school I I went to school only when it was absolutely necessary I had very innovative ways of staying away from school because right from my childhood one thing that somehow got stuck in my head was if someone is saying something which means something to them however simplistic or stupidities I’m willing to pay out a full attention but if someone is saying something which doesn’t mean a damn thing to him or her but it’s some big stuff I am NOT interested in that because if you’re not interested in that why should I listen to something that you are not interested in so essentially this instruction business comes from this when you think you need to instruct somebody you have assumed that those whom you instruct are of a lower intelligence than yourself which is a serious mistake that is sufficient scientific data to show everybody every one of us over thirty years of age are not as intelligent as a six-year-old child who’s just coming to the school the substantial proof to show that only reason why we are looking out to be smart is because we have information and the child does not have information so we just showing off this information in the form of instruction if if we bring the teacher training process completely take away this word instruction and bring inspiration and transmission as a way of life for the teachers every school system could become a fruitful process whatever the thing because I don’t believe we can transform all the systems around the world but in some way if you bring inspiration and ability to transmit whatever really matters to them then a child would sit up and listen for sure as a part of this in our schools we made it you know our school is a seven day school there’s no holiday and no no weekend this may be shocking for America because thank God it’s Friday is the philosophy if if one knows the joy of learning I don’t say why would they want to take a break well activity needs to be adjusted according to you know the child’s ability to do things so in a month we have four to five activity days which are not determined it’s always a surprise for a child the child will never know when is the activity day today when they come today could be activity day certainly tomorrow you come again it’s an activity they next 15 days it’s continuous academic day but I gotta make so very well open with arts music everything to such a point I found that when they come to in India system I don’t know it’s the same here probably they do first 10 years from first standard to 10th standard and then there’s 1112 which is like a pre University kind of thing once they come to 1112 they all want to get into professional colleges in India you don’t get into your professional college unless you have 99.5 percentage okay the Delhi University has the legend of refusing children who got hundred out of hundred where are they supposed to go I don’t know they got hundred and they refused because there’s no space for them so this marks madness will catch up and the parents will go on overdrive and we have spent 10 years bringing art music culture into their lives everything will be dumped and just mathematics and science is being done whether they like it that they don’t like it so in the last two years I made this eleven twelve into three years I said it’s three years if you want to come you come otherwise you’d leave it because we invested so much in art music culture everything now the moment you come to sixteen years of age you drop everything and go into professions you are a doctor who cannot sing you’re a dangerous doctor believe me yes you’re an engineer who doesn’t understand the engineering of your own body that’s why you don’t dance if you if you did know the engineering of your body very effortlessly you would know how to move so we made this into two years into three years so people said one year later my children will go my neighbor’s children are already in engineering and medicine I said this how it is this not a race education is not a race one year later what’s your problem you are not in that condition he has to earn a living at this age one year later he will go more mature and more complete so we did this and the amazing thing is almost 90% of the parents wonder children back in the school one year extra for the same education but we brought many aspects of leadership management business which are not in the curriculum and above all music art theater in a big way and it’s working out wonderfully for the children they’re coming out much more rounded out and when the school started the first question that came was naturally me being Who I am because education is not my full-time involvement so people said the service of guru you’re going to give them a spiritual teaching I said the spiritual teaching is for the stupid who lost life sense people like you I said to the parents people like you who lost the fundamental life sense you need a spiritual teaching if you allow human intelligence if you know how to nurture human intelligence without influencing it because teachers thinks they have to influence parents think they have to influence religious teachers of course they want to influence intelligence need not be influenced it just needs to be inflamed all the time but everybody wants to influence this wanting to influence human intelligence comes from I think in these parts of the world there is a religious thread in the education system a very strong sense of opposites something is God something is devil something is heaven something is hell something is evil something is good this is so strongly set up in people’s minds naturally they want to influence because you think they will join the other party like how the two political parties in the country look like two religions as far as I am concerned the language that’s being used on the news channels in my perception the political parties look like two different religions to me because it is such strong opposites no that’s not what a democracy was about the amok recei means today you could odd for this tomorrow for that as it was necessary you would shift no more shifting people are already clearly identified this is mean that is you finished maybe the people who were telling me only 6% travels next 47 47 % 94% is fixed as to different religions in the country this is very much present in the education mechanism that we have strong sense of opposites this is where I think there is something that education systems in the world can pick up from the east where we don’t have a strong sense of opposites because our gods are Devils also our Devils have gods also somebody who looks like this is what is beautiful what is ugly you cannot determine in the East because everything is one big happening I think if you want to nurture human intelligence this strong sense of opposites have to go there is nobody in this room who is 24 hours good or 24 hours bad isn’t it you can confess me nobody is 24 hours good or 24 hours bad it’s just when you’re conscious you function in a wonderful way when you’re unconscious you might do something lousy this happens to every human being now instead of recognizing that fundamental quality of the human being and how to nurture this because the basis of our intelligence is just this that we can do this or that if you are another creature which doesn’t have the same level of intelligence as the human being has a tiger will only do that we know exactly what he will do a hyena will only do that a buffalo will only do that it’s all fixed a human being can do just about anything that is where the intelligence comes in that an active intelligence would choose an unconscious and a kind of conditioned intelligence will tend to do a certain thing the purpose of education is to decondition the intelligence so that it becomes an active intelligence adapting to the situations doing the right thing for the situations in which we exist not positions that we have already taken that is the essence of intelligence but today in some way into education system is trying to condition the intelligence this way or that way because I think there is a strong thread of religion in the background though it may not be spoken I see that everywhere there is a strong sense of opposites very strong opposites which cannot meet not be too rigid in one way or another so can you say the curiosity is the engine of achievement and so I’m wondering what happens for curiosity as we grow older and how do we get it back and sustain it and how to be cheap and when you go through different methods for reaching this but in terms of people are blind dating out of curiosity that’s one reason and if someone wait and aware how do we hold on to that as the material continue their children inspire us all the time there we learning with them all the time but as adult learners what not to comment if I may first on what sadbhir says about and the opposites I think this is absolutely right you know we’ve what the Western rational view is very much that thinking is a process of making distinctions it’s not the whole logic enterprises about you know this it’s that it’s fine chopping seeing differences between things and making things into categories I remember writing you know that the whole and it’s been a brilliant success in all kinds of ways I’m not saying it’s been without its benefits of course not we live off the fruits of rationalism all the time but a really good example to me is this the the whole taxonomic process that developed in the 18th the 19th century is in the natural world gave us an amazing system of classifying natural things into into into Genesis and into species and subspecies Linnaeus spent a long time figuring out all these different classifications and if you go to a Natural History Museum you see all of this at work you know if you go into a Natural History Museum you can go into a room and I’ve done this it’s got nothing but butterflies in and it’s very impressive you see all these butterflies in cases against the wall pin to the back dead you know but they all in species you know the big ones at the top small ones down at the bottom go to another room you’ve see the beetles not the beetles other people’s or classified and it’s a very interesting way to think about it it’s a way of studying these things but if you leave the Natural History Museum go into the countryside you don’t see all the butterflies flying in formation but the big ones at the front and the small ones of the back then the beetles all in some separate part of the field keeping their own company in actuality in life these things all mixed up with each other they cross pollinate the environment that they all depend upon that the principle of economy it’s about relationships is not about separate categories and for example in our installs we divide the arts and the sciences but it’s just a device because in the world all the scientists I know are deeply affected by aesthetic interests look at the work of engineers look at the nose contact one ask you later if it may if you have time the bat dance I’m a big advocate for dance and in most school systems dances out of the picture and tiny though because we need to spend more time on math and I think dances is important as math but it’s not separate from it these things are integrators no you can talk about your liver in your kidneys as separate entities but they only function together it’s the only way actually makes sense you know if you take your liver out and put it on the table it’s not doing a very good job at that point you know there’s something wrong with my liver yes there would be it’s out of your body now it’s about how these things connect that matters so much so I think that the better way is to see that thinking is also about making relationships and making connections and not seeing separation so we end up for example with in school saying are you an artist or are you a scientist it’s gonna be this or it’s going to be that it doesn’t have to be a choice so why not about creativity I often ask people let me know hey I ought to get a life ready but but I do ask people how creative they think they are large groups and it’s interesting to me how many people who are creatives so to speak will also say then but they’re not ready very smart or people who think they’re intelligent will say they’re not very creative and actually creativity intelligence aren’t separate they are functions the same thing creative is about having fresh ideas and that’s a function of intelligence so when I say crater is as important as literacy it’s it’s not separate from it but creativity seems to me to be the hallmark of human intelligence however describe it you know that there’s something prior to which is imagination the imagination is the power to into mine things that aren’t present creativity’s putting that to working in some way but the best evidence of the power of human creativity is that we all create our own lives you know every human life is unique achievement there have been a hundred billion people we think on the planet in the past hundred and fifty two hundred thousand years and every single life has been different every one because you create your life unlike most of the creatures then and human beings don’t live as other creatures seem to only in the direct physical world we live in wells of ideas and beliefs and values and cultural practices and traditions and we know we human beings invented virtual reality long before oculus you know we all live in virtual worlds it’s what the great cultural conflicts are about when people’s conception of the world come into conflict like this the great religions tearing each other apart over ideas and cultivating creativity and curiosity seem to me to actually be paramount and it’s the starting point of Education you have to see help people to see that many things we think are provisional the contingent they can be changed we can think differently we don’t need to be trapped into our own biography we can recreate ourselves if we wish to and that’s what as I understand a lot of this work is a minute it’s seeing giving people another sense in another realm of possibilities that they can come to occupy and inhabit but it begins by enlivening the capacity to ask questions the sense of intrigue about the world around us and it’s that that gets killed in schools when it comes down to direct instruction testing and multiple-choice bubble tests it’s the very thing that should give life to education that we kill off at the bottom yeah I always think I have two children and I think you know if we may use each child like they were the found Dalai Lama can they go to find the diamonds okay I’d say or some village and say you’re the Dalai Lama I raised this child to think that they are this divine person or if we were to revere and raise each child in that way I think that would change the way in other words I said earlier about how we look at kiss and we think we know so much more but really you know I think we’re here to serve them yeah but if you have too many Dalai Lama’s what would you do the thing is I know this is a common word used in this part of the world about raising children you can’t raise children you can raise cattle you can’t raise children this is an idea you must give up children grow up as can point it out in the beginning you can only create a conducive atmosphere they grow up it doesn’t matter you have two children how old are they okay you will see as they grow though it is the same genetics same food same homes maybe same school you will see one will go like this another will go like that because there are different ways to perceive the same thing the receptivity in our mind is of different ways if we have to get into technicality of this in yoga we recognize ten dimensions of receptivity I’ll talk about five because the other fiber to esoteric these five are referred to as centers of sleep centers of memory centers of imagination centers of right perception centers of perversion it is there in all of us if it comes something let’s say the same information or the same aspect comes to all of us right now somebody is little let us sleep you more some of them all let the sleepy more they will perceive it one way somebody is deep into their memory of whatever their experience of lives are they will perceive it one way somebody is in a heightened state of imagination they will perceive it one way somebody is in a state of equanimity they will perceive it one way somebody has taken extreme positions of right or wrong they will perceive it another way so what whatever I may give you depending upon from which Center you receive accordingly it becomes that so you may have two children same home everything same all inputs same but one will go like this one will go like that because every moment how they’re receiving what is coming their way so now the important thing is as I said earlier when you say picking up an end child and saying you’re the lai Lama you’re the spiritual teacher with all due respect to the institution of what it is I’m saying you’re trying to influence them powerfully an intelligence should not be influenced and influenced intelligence dangerous intelligence an intelligence which is on but not influenced will always be a solution an intelligence which is profoundly influenced by a this or that is always a divisive intelligence it is me versus you it will become strong sense of Rights and wrong strong sense of this is it or that is it will always create conflict however good it may look to you say right now I’ll take an extreme example an example you’re not supposed to speak in America for example right now there is an Islamic state we need to look at this in reality what it is there is somebody out there who believes in something which is more precious to them than their life yes when a man is willing to die for something that he believes you have to at least recognize his genuine all right there is no better proof but the result of that word horrendous things happen is another thing okay the consequence of that firm belief is another thing but you have to appreciate this man believes that there is something that he believes in it is far more precious than his own life when I say life I want you to look at this whether it’s an ant or an elephant whatever life you take every life holds its own life of highest importance you try to catch a little ant a little and does not think oh I’m just a little ant let me die he does everything possible to live this is the nature of life that is so for a human being also this life is precious for this life but I am willing to throw this away for something that I had believed in I am saying the belief is genuine okay but the result is horrendous so if you strongly influence your children whatever you think is right there’s no question about it they all the figures support that view that their kids from middle class and wealthier backgrounds do better at school they do better at tests kids from impoverished backgrounds – much less well non graduation rates are much higher in impoverished backgrounds of which so many more than they used to be it’s true in certain of our African American community is in this panic communities it’s also the case that although it be wrong to say if you don’t graduate from high school you go to jail that’s not true obviously not people often have wonderful lives they didn’t just didn’t have to finish high school what is true is a very high proportion of people in jail at u6 over 60% of people in the correctional system in America did not complete high school so there’s a very very considerable and significant economic dimension to all of this and it’s creating a chasm in the country that I think you you know it has to be addressed in in an urgent kind of away America you know prides itself it keeps telling itself it’s the best country in the world we have to watch this I mean I I live here fifteen years I’d like you know that recently you know we’d like it here a lot but that but nobody has a guaranteed place anymore I mean when there’s a book written about the fate of Empires higher called Jared Diamond it’s a very good book it’s called collapse if there’s a problem for Jared it’s that he gives you too much on the cover you know he needs to come up with a more elliptic title if he wants to sell copies of his book I think you know what happens to empires they collapse we’re done ready you should have called the book what does happen to empires read on now BC I’m I’m from England and I’ll keep mentioning from now on just so they’re doing it if in the middle of the nineteenth century Britain had the largest empire in human history that that’s not jingoism it’s just a matter of historical fact when at the biggest military program the biggest economy the biggest colonial program if you had gone to the court of Queen Victoria in 1870 and said this Empire will be over within the generation you’d have been laughed at the building but it was by 1918 it was we’d lost a generation of people in another foolish war we were virtually bankrupted by it in 1939 it all happened again and in 1945 it was finished I was born in 1950 in Liverpool and we played in bomb craters and we’re on rationing we had powdered orange juice powdered eggs and powdered milk on rations from the central government with ration books that’s how I grew up with the first ten years it was over completely gone it collapsed now what I’m saying is that you know America is living a dream at the moment which is that all this is completely sustainable and can carry on in perpetuity and it won’t I’m not preaching for an empire either by the way it’s just that America is the most powerful place on the planet at the moment and it’s the hemorrhaging generations of children with no economic Hope no purchase on a life that can add up to anything so far wallowing in all kinds of crime and drug abuse I’m come to Chicago next week where they have terrible problems with the education system and to say that this isn’t the consequence of America’s economic policies is just self delusional you know it’s it’s a Blake – the flagrant disregard of the well-being of the people that America is being hoisted on its own petard their economically you know it’s so much wealth concentrated in such a small group of people and so and I’m not wishing for it aren’t you for it I don’t wish it on any country it’s just that this is a very serious issue for this country yeah that’s we’re in this country we’re talking about it and but the good news is as well there are lots of wonderful people doing fantastic things I travel around the country a lot I’m going to Chattanooga in the morning that there’s a whole thing to revive their education as you were saying empires and you talked about England well it was a changing situation in the world and there was a terrible war and yes whatever but empires have closed down without any major disasters like World War two for example in India many empires rose which spread right across subcontinent and they just closed down by themselves without any war without any external interference and there is a significant diffuse look at the thing there was a time when 36 percent of the world’s economy was India where everybody wanted to go to India and one guy made a mistake and landed here you know it’s a celebrated mistake very wrong perception of which direction is which all right you missed the sunset for sunrise he went Western stuff east anyway but that economy which was over 30 percent of the world’s economy just closed down simply because they were doing so well and they decided they need to protect themselves this is biggest mistake they did in trying to protect themselves what was a very transparent culture they tried to become little introvert and they successfully did it and that just pushed it down completely then came the innovations then came all the other things but one of the biggest undoing for India wheeze they became introvert they thought they had to protect themselves till then they never protected themselves they embraced everything the moment they thought they have to protect themselves it started going down if you protect it you must understand the walls of protection that you build are also walls of self imprisonment after some time so what was the worst thing about school for you when you were a kid you asked him me or him I didn’t have a terrible time in school I have to say I mean it the school I went to kind of broadly worked for me and the main thing was that there were no say I went to a grammar school you know and although I are very keen to qualify the importance of academic work I always rather liked it you know it worked for me and because it’s meant to work for some people and but the thing I dislike most about it was we were put on a fast track at school and it meant therefore we had to drop certain things so I liked art at school and because we were supposed to be taking our exams at fifteen I would see they had teacher and I offered to do art and he said because I was either art or German that’s the interesting conflict was there and I said what do you think I should do he said it would fire you I would do you that time said I want to do art in Germany some of the things you can’t do art in German which baffled me you know cuz I’d seen films of Germany in there with pictures everywhere you know I thought well pressingly something Germany’s capable of doing art and and he said if I were you I’d do German I said why he said it would be more useful and I was baffled by it I thought why would German be more useful than art I mean it is useful or not said it’s not especially in Germany a minute sir absolute bonus you know but but the impression that somehow art was useless that’s what became clear is that the school curriculum is divided into two groups of subjects it still is well the first problem is the idea of subjects but then but if you accept that for a moment most school curricula divide into groups of subjects useful ones and useless ones and the useless ones so you know art and music and dance and so on things that so I had to drop germ are to do German they never worked out I never got the hang of German and the reason is it’s impossible you cannot speak German we know this to be true I read I tried but Germans like left in you know it’s you have verbs that conjugate nouns that decline the word ought has to come in the same things that the verb has to be then the sentence they’re long sentences you know so you can have a long compound German sentence with the verb at the end so if you talk to somebody in German it could be ages you know you know you know I mean you know who was involved where this thing happened know what but you’ve no idea what they did until the nice word shows up tonight does verb occurs about 15 minutes they told that was what they were doing actually no I did okay I went I went and gave a talk at in Vienna when I graduated college I went to go and speak at this education conference and I was picked up in at the airport in the taxi and and the guy said to me in German where are you from to which I replied yesterday evening in which I now know is a mixture of French and German and he said are you were English I said yes but I can do art but it’s it’s funny because well when they call me about this thing in advance they said you know if this talk to all these educators what you’d like to give the your talk in English or German so on the phone I acted like this was a big dilemma you know because in Germany they don’t speak English anyway that’s the thing you get they’ll speak English to you so so I acted like it was a real kind of real tear you know no I said look I think in the end I’ll give this talk in English because I should say I took my my oral exam in German at school and I failed it twice twice and the reason is that you know it’s a very complicated language it’s like Latin but if you’ve got a Latin translation to do you’ve got till next Tuesday you know and a pencil you know whereas in Germany they expect a reply immediately I just couldn’t get the hang of this thing at all so so I did the German all exam and I failed it though the first one because I spent the whole exam standing up having misunderstood the instruction to sit down so fated or Iowa I know so when the corn on the first I trying to give this talk in English or German I said I can’t do in English I think they said why is that something like there are several reasons one is it’ll be longer yeah more more than three minutes which is my conversational range in German currently secondly it will deal with more complicated issues than my favorite things well I’m largely confined to and thirdly the audience won’t have to keep standing up and sitting down yeah cuz I’m still annoyed about that yes so it was that these choices you know I had to drop it to sorry I didn’t want to do I we never did music in school because it wasn’t thought to be relevant to the academic track so it’s that stuff you know I wouldn’t over psychologize it but it was that is the lack of those things on my own education it may be think hard about why they mattered in fact I wanted to ask you if you don’t have trance it’s now Charlie up to you but that one things have often argued is that is that dance in schools is as important as math and to most Western people that sounds like a bizarre exaggeration of something but it’s not if people are embodied in a way are physical creatures we and I’ve had the pleasure of working with a lot of dance companies I’m the patron of the London School to contemporary dance know Martha Graham’s company in the u.s. in the UK and to watch dancers at work it’s the most extraordinary thing you know the it’s not just a physical activity of course not it’s a it’s a holistic activity and and I know in then one of your schools dance is a very central part of I remember you saying in one of your talks that or you equate it dance with science is that right I’m not saying you it is a science but that the scientific nature doesn’t the way I perceive the world and well and continue from the question that the max asked what is the most terrible thing about the school I don’t know because I was not there I didn’t suffer that I I remember so well I have shared with many people I remembered so well that you know this assessment that she was talking about a big investment in assessment some 16 million in assessing children which is annoyingly grading them this grading life does not respect only schools and education systems respect in the end who does well in the world is not determined by how much marks they got somewhere but they’re given an extra advantage because they got so many marks so I remember this monthly tests and are the monthly report cards that were given out I would see some children strutting around because they are first second something and some children was sitting and crying was there afraid to go home I don’t know what they had in their report cards as well as I was concerned whenever it was given to me I just took it and gave it to my dad he would open and he would blow I just didn’t know what’s happening this is a communication between my teacher and my father I never once open and saw what is written in it because I thought this is something between the two of them because as soon as I was concerned every test paper I always gave it empty didn’t write a word on it or a doodle something if they insisted I wrote my name otherwise I wouldn’t write that either and every time I would change the spelling of my name because the Germans pronounced J has a or Y so my name starts with J for some time I wrote it with Y sometimes I wrote it with W I tried all kinds of spelling so they said we know according to English language they said a proper num can be spelled any way you want it so every test paper I spelt it differently as I felt like it why I’m saying this is and when the final test or exam came that I have to go to the next class my concern was I don’t want to be left behind with junior students I want to go with my friends so I always passed that one so people always wonder is six zeros in every test how do you get to pass this one I wrote my paper only for 35 marks which is passing mark I write through my education half an hour bail till half an hour bail in India you can’t get up and leave I’m just waiting with a 30 minute bail the moment the bell rings he’ll get up and leave because by then I’ve written and I’ve calculated I’m getting 37 36 I’m done I’m out always you if you look at my report cards right through everything is that if I had 36 37 35 36 37 all subjects teachers would beg me you may know something else please sit down on right I said that’s not the point I got 35 I’m going to the next class and that’s all that matters to me that’s our only concern that I don’t want to be left with younger children I want to move with my friends except for that I had no interest in anything this doesn’t mean I had no interested in anything at all I paid enormous attention to every detail of what’s around me with which I developed a certain sense of geometry about everything by the time I come to eight standard my mathematics paper was divided like this it is 30 marks for geometry 30 for arithmetic and the remaining for algebra I I never bothered I don’t understand why alphabets and numbers are mixed up so geometry I got 30 out of 30 everything else arithmetic I got five that’s about it I went on because my sense of geometry is about how everything stands when I look at the body I look at the geometry not at the complexion not at the shape and form I look at the geometry how you’re sitting if I just see how you sit and stand I will tell you in next 10 years time what problems you will have with your body so my sense of geometry came by simply paying enormous attention to anything and everything it grew to such a point if I just find a leaf I could just sit like this for five six hours at a time this is one thing I feel we have to bring to our children ability to attend to something whether it’s important or not important is not your business my father being a very high level academic excellence in his life being a physician supposed to be a very sick strict disciplinarian which unfortunately or fortunately didn’t work on me every day evening 6 7 o’clock 9 o’clock we’re supposed to read our textbooks however uninteresting they are it doesn’t matter so I would open the book like this I find a little speck on the paper this speck would absorb me for the next two hours without reading a single alphabet I would sit like this for two hours I wouldn’t read a single alphabet on the book but I would not be looking here and there I’m totally with the tiny little speck on the paper I am saying this is a big mistake we have done as I said earlier we have set strong opposites this is important this is not important I think if human intelligence applies itself to every little thing every little thing will explore it in your cosmos by itself this is what the human being is here for to enhance life in such a way that no other creature can do it but unfortunately we have taken strong positions this is important this is not important so it’s going away right now the only thing that’s important is what serves our economic engine is the only important thing this whole desert ation about German and art is just this what is important what will earn you more bucks what will not earn your money that’s the question that is the fundamental base question if we do not remove this from our education system there will be no education there will only be one more manufactured your comment about flawed enterprise as an education is especially how the government and regulatory policies are influencing our education system and America is really the most powerful country in the world but we have worse than some of the third world country education system but we also have the best universities and best schools and we have very flawed public school system as well as community colleges if you are the single advisor to the new president what policies would you recommend so that America becomes again that the most powerful country in the world in our human capital and we can make the impact moving forward well just to say I think the there are brilliant public schools in America and public education is one of the kind of jewels in the crown of America’s achievement over the past 200 years and you know I know there’s a growth in charter schools and independent schools and all of that but for most kids you know public schools not their best shot it’s their only shot and getting public schools right and not giving up on them I think it’s a really major priority which I’d want to say to any incoming president that there’s that there’s been a clear attempt to break up public education or at least to bring the profit motive into it you know education worldwide is estimated to be just on the economic front here a five and a half trillion dollar business it’s why so many big publishers independent entrepreneurs are getting into education why so many tech companies are getting into it it’s it’s like another Gold Rush and I’m not against you know people with good interesting ideas getting involved in education as long as we keep remembering its children that we’re dealing with and young people and they’re not there to make people profits and I do think it’s very important that any incoming president you know they don’t that’s the first thing I’d want to say that the second is that by the way the community college system is fantastic and more and more and more people are going to give me a call because the costs of going to college have become so ridiculous I mean student debt now is what 1.3 trillion dollars more than or credit card debt so I think I think that’s the second thing I think this it’s an amazing asset in this country but the third the third is just the the things that we’ve been saying here about the importance of getting teaching and learning right I mean I’m not and I don’t think any of us should be we shouldn’t have as our priority making America the most powerful country in the world if I were in England I wouldn’t modding land or Great Britain to be the most powerful country in the world it it’s not I think the issues are bigger now than countries and and national international competitions like these aren’t terribly helpful I think we made it we need a much bigger global and compression of view of what we’re trying to get done much more collaboration much more integration of interests me for example by common consent the best education system in the world at the moment is Finland and Finland set about revising its education system 40 years ago at around the same time that America did you know America got into all this after the nation at risk report under the Reagan administration and America went down the road of standardization and testing and narrowing the curriculum and it hasn’t worked I mean billions of dollars being spent with no improvement to speak of massive frustration on the part of teachers principals disaffection among kids hasn’t worked Finland meanwhile over the past 40 years is creating the best education system on earth nationally by student achievement retention satisfaction engagement fulfillment professional respect for teachers satisfaction of parents but stability of their communities it’s become an exemplary system and insofar as they matter at all these international league tables show that Finland is also closer near the top – in the in the areas are being tested it’s a fantastic system and it’s the exact opposite the Finnish education system is not based on competition it’s based on collaboration between schools work together teachers work together universities work with schools with parents there’s no standardized testing in Finland as in non well as one at the end of high school and there’s almost 100% graduation rate and it works do you know then people say well you can’t compare Finland to America well you have population terms it’s hard to do that because Finland has a population of what five and a half million Americans want 310 million now but the fact is that education in America is organized mainly at the state level and there are 30 states in America with populations smaller than or equal to Finland I do a lot of work in Oklahoma there are three and a half million people in Oklahoma I think Vermont has something less than a million I was in Wyoming recently I was the only person there just me just me and the driver looking for the entrance so so it’s not it’s not that we should all try to be Finnish and you know call our capitols new Helsinki it’s not that it’s that the principles apply and the principles are pretty straightforward one things that I’m going to say is we talked about the Industrial Revolution and the origins of Education in the just really revolutionary it it’s about conformity and compliance and but the real I think the real comparison is not with industrial manufacturing it’s with industrial agriculture which also developed at during the 19th century an industrial agriculture completely subverted the old organic systems it was based on mechanization which meant that you could cultivate single crop farms as far as you could see and you know you go to the Midwest it’s corn as far as I will take your it’s potatoes as far as you can see to the horizon that was made possible by mechanization the other innovation innovation was chemical fertilizers which made it possible to things to grow bigger and faster and the third innovation was pesticides because once you created these big monocultural farms they lacked the natural protectiveness that mixed farming crates so we had to soak these things in these pesticides to keep them from being infested with insects and it worked has worked for a while the problem is that it’s destroyed top soils around the world which are eroding at a prodigious rate it’s poisoned waterways it’s for losing the oceans and it’s just it’s not sustainable the whole world we all depend upon a very narrow smear of topsoil less than a few feet thick that doesn’t cover the whole world it just covers part of it most of the earth is rock or water and we without this we can’t and it’s taken millions of years for this stuff to accumulate and industrial agriculture has is destroying it and you see it you know it’s what happened in the Dust Bowl in Oklahoma it’s happened in other parts of the world too the thing about this system it’s been very successful but it’s completely unsustainable it’s unnatural same thing with animals no we’re keeping animals in these terrible compounds were pumping them full of antibiotics and hormones to make them grow bigger and faster and because they live in these terrible conditions they cross in fact so we pump them full of this stuff the thing about industrial agriculture it’s all been based on output and yield and people will tell you that industrial agriculture is the interesting is the focus is on the plant or the animal it’s getting it bigger its yield an output organic farming is based on the opposite principle which is they don’t focus on a plant they focus on the soil the exact opposite thing if you get the soil right through natural process of composting crop rotation you don’t need all these pesticides and you don’t need to keep renewing the soil it does that itself and the organic farmers know that if you get the soil right the plant will be fine don’t focus on the flat plant focus on the conditions of growth and the same thing is exactly happened in our school system I think we’ve had industrial systems we’ve been focused on output on yield we’ve created sterile inhuman conditions in our schools where people are not learning even though no we’re getting data and so on and along the way what we’ve done is eroded the culture of learning and all schools know and it’s um sure it’s true also if you get the culture of the school right get the culture right you know then things grow and it’s applying those organic principles and if if we can get all schools to do that then the problem will start to write itself I mean what can just now said is the most important aspect that is education is not a production line it’s an organic happening at the same time from the question she asked see you cannot create an education system independent of the society in which we exist some ideal system America is America as he said some principles from Finland you can take but Finland is protected by oceans and all sides and it is what it is and cold also prevents lots of things America is what it is children are not just learning from their teachers they’re learning from the street they’re learning from the culture around so you cannot ever develop an education system independent of the ecosystem that’s happening are we as a society willing to in some way cultivate the ecosystem in the society which is suitable for a child to grow up in the best possible way is a question that all of us should ask are we going to do what we like to do or are we going to be conscious of how this will impact future generations every action that we are performing is an important thing that we need to look at because educating a child is not just a teacher’s business or schools business or parents business it is happening all the time so a more responsible attitude towards this a larger consciousness about this everything that you do our children are seeing and what will happen to them tomorrow if they start doing what you did at 18 they do at 12 what will happen if what they do at twelve somebody does it at ten what happens this is something that all of us need to pay some attention to because education is not just happening in the school alone yes a certain part is happening but I think child learns equally from outside as he learns from the school having said that this entire approach of bringing creativity I think the most important thing that schools are missing out is exposing children to more natural phenomena in the world they have become an isolated information you know cocoons of their own they are living their cosmos through the phone it’s very very important I think every school in wess in taking their children out exposing them to natural phenomena and different thought process in the world different cultures in the world so that there is a more homogenous approach to intelligence rather than right and wrong kind of intelligence why I’m saying this particularly specifically for American education system is I see on the national news channel people use words like good guys and bad guys if somebody says such a thing in India is finished I’m sure even in you okay you cannot say that but on the national news channel major anchors referring to people as good guys and bad guys I am saying this has to go if we really want to cultivate an organic system where everybody grows to his full potential rather than being a product of a particular system thank you

16 thoughts on “Do Schools Kill Creativity? – Sir Ken Robinson with Sadhguru At Los Angeles

  1. Great ideas by great human being

  2. its overwhelming how intellectual they are.. i think this is one of the 'discussions' needed instead of debates.. and a host just as good and fluent with his points.. this is one of the best Sadhguru videos I've heard.

  3. Real issue. Thnx for this

  4. People have lot of superstitions and education is one of the most biggest and widespread among them. Only right amount of education can turn people as intelligent as intelligent. Evolution had not designed the human brain to store or to process 2 decades of education. Education isolates the students from the practical world, so highly educateds r innocent, 2 b honest idiots. Moreover overdose of education is turning people as idiots lazy unhealthy, breaking up relationship among the human beings and the list is endless, just how a plant dies due 2 over watering, news paper delivery boys r more intelligent and have more common sense. World's greatest personalities are either under educated or weren't the bright students of the school for example Bill gates, Swami vivekananda, Einstein, srinivasa ramanujan, Steve jobs and the list is endless.
    If you want a job go 2 college and become idiot, otherwise don't go to college and be intelligent, but u can't get a good job. I believe in Finland's education policy, which would be just one third of Indian education syllabus. The irony is Bill gates said a degree is a sure path to success, because idiots gets good job, and under educated can't get a good job.

    I am not the first r last person to say. But changing the world is not so easy. In one of the India's thelugu language long back wise people said as a dhobi (uneducated cloth washer) is better than the educated.

    Moreover history and research says higher iq people are most likely to fail and burn out in long term, and lower iq people are most likely to be successful.

  5. I say no POPE can come out and speak this bold …………….nor muslim prophets ……..bacause they are just some shit holes

  6. Nature shows that even with a lot of differences we can all live happily and peacefully

  7. They have made it very clear and simple. Now what Government will act ? I hope for the better. Is anyone from policy makers listening ??

  8. Great talk. Thank you for uploading it.

  9. So interesting, how Kenn Robinson and Sadhguru giving their explanations, why the education system, are missing so many brilliant thinking people – by testing and spending time and money for noting – believing the system and forgetting the human being …… ;-(

  10. Can anyone help me with subtitles of this video or a written format of this discussion

  11. What horrendous things have happened because we've turned the schooling system into a religion?

  12. If Sir Ken Robinson could replace trump. The Revolution May go wel!!

  13. Sadhguru is so right! Children are basically abused to become sparparts in the "great maschine". Schools were invented during the industrial revolution…keep this in mind! We are for sure going to be depressed if the maschine (economie) is running badly, but if it's running fine, we are perfectly doomed and enslaved! Everyone is in a crazy run, that children do better than the neightbor ones! Even more worse, people mistake what they have with what they are! Even certificates are mistaken for who they are.

  14. I love you guys

  15. Schools are centres for orthodox brainwash.

  16. This is amazing. I feel like I found the biggest hidden treasure. I will use this video as the basis of my thesis going into my Master's degree. This needs to be talked about now, it will take time to change but it must start now. Just Amazing.

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