Updated: Oct 4, 2021
A very good morning to everyone in South Africa, and a very good afternoon from India.
I’d like to congratulate and express my gratitude towards The Hector Pieterson Museum Management, City of Johannesburg, June 16 Youth Development Foundation, REPSSI, Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, and Afrika Tikkun for hosting and organising 6th PSS Children’s, Adolescents and Youth Pre Forum Learning and Sharing 2021 and inviting me to address and talk to all of you, and to the students.
I am Devesh Gupta, Founder at Emerge, based out of India, here to spend time with all of you. We work with Youth, Elders, Business Entrepreneurs, Universities on Right Education, Consciousness Change, and Action on the issues of Global Hunger, Climate Change, Nuclear Disarmament, Peace, Order and Harmony across the globe.
We started working, sharing and learning with Mr. Seth Mazibuko and June 16 Development Foundation on Protecting Preserving and Promoting the History Heritage and Learnings from June 16 1976 in the beginning of January 2021, right in between the Covid Pandemic, where world was getting divided, Mr. Mazibuko and we were getting united.
Today, I am here to speak with the students, and everyone in life who learns is a student.
Please do not consider this as a lecture or a speech, but rather, I am sharing what I learned in my journey of 27 years, being a student, and a teacher, being a youth, growing into adult, and realising that I have always been a child and a student, and this life is my school.
My body size was increasing, changing, but my mind, was of a child’s.
Do you know what does it mean to have a child like mind? An innocent mind, which is pure, and honest. All of us are children of God, of the one, and are made up of similar atoms, substances, earthly material.
A child like mind is honest, it has curiosity, and passion. It is fresh, it hasn’t been filled up by hurt, ambitions, violence. And whatever we see, do, think, we become that. And slowly the fresh child’s mind gets conditioned into what others think, because of control, because the child started fearing at some point.
Now a mind which is in fear, can it learn? A mind which is hurt, which is lost in the yesterday, or tomorrow, can it ever pay attention? Have you noticed that when you are hurt, you can't pay attention, when you are in fear, you are not able to pay attention, and learning can only happen when we pay attention.
To pay attention is to deeply listen, is to see clearly, urgently, not only with our ears and eyes, but with our everything, with our whole energy.
So do not fear in speaking up, do not think that what you think is wrong, do not think what others will think on your thinking, start questioning, question what you don’t understand, do not accept or reject simply, but inquire, find out for yourself, and to truly find out, you never need to fear. Do everything with your full attention, and full energy, and in that state, the fear doesn’t exist. Be attentive, be honest.
Another thing which I want to touch with all of you is comparison. What does it mean to compare? Why do we compare ourselves from others?
Comparison will always prevent your mind from learning. Never compare yourself from another. Work on yourself, if today you do not have money at home then don’t get lost in comparing yourself with others. That is just wasting time, and also bringing feeling of jealousy, and a sense of division in you.
Whenever we compare, we lose love from our heart. Because if we really love ourselves, we will never compare. For a mother, all her children are important. Each rose is special, and you can truly meet yourself when you will not have a thought of the other for comparison. Just learn about yourself, and work on yourself, and that will bring the most amount of change.
Like I said earlier, when we compare we lose love in our hearts. We are all one, your skin color might be different from Carl’s, your height might be different from Mr. Seth Mazibuko, your weight and gender might be different from mine, but we are all the children of earth, and this is our world to share, and to take care of, together. Not by dividing ourselves, not by comparing, but by loving everyone, and acting in goodness. You know, a person with no love in heart, but very knowledgeable, who knows how to split atoms, or to create a virus, or make a bomb becomes a monster. Knowledge is important, but who uses the knowledge, is it a monster or a person of love? You have to decide that for yourself, and for the Children of Earth, and your brothers and sisters of Africa, of India, of USA, of the universe. Deeply live each day, each moment is new, you have to be fresh in each moment to love, and to learn.
Today is Mahatma Gandhi’s 152nd Birthday, and it is just incredible to see a man of truth, without violence, leading to change, we are Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, are we all different?
Now, after seeing this truth, let’s understand who we are. And who we don’t have to be. And that is the true purpose of any and all education.