Learning the Essence of True Education | Act Youth Force

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This series is in collaboration with Act Youth Force (Visit AYF) where we focusing on the write ups by different students write inspiring stuff. Read the complete series here 


What is the essence of education? What is true education? Why no one teaches us anything related to these crucial questions?

What they talk regarding it is that you have to become ‘ what the society considers as successful’ after completing your education. There isn’t anyone who may speak about your interests & your responsibilities. Everyone will tell you about materialistic goals in life instead of pursuing your dreams and learning various skills. We live in a society where our paths are planned. Many students with whom I have studied don’t even get proper exposure to life. Their whole journey is planned by their parents, relatives, and elder siblings. They are only allowed to go to a particular institution for the sake of it, cram their course books, and then work even harder to get into some good university. Additionally, the major they are going to study in their university is also decided by others.

Isn’t this the way many of us lives our lives? Don’t we consider that our peace of mind and life lies in securing admission in a particular university, or if we go for a particular degree? Have not you ever thought, why am I so obsessed with something which does not guarantees my happiness for life?

I thought that I should share my story here. What I actually remember is that I was in 2nd standard when I was told that you are going to be a great doctor in your future. I don’t remember exactly when I started dreaming to do something really different and good for the mankind, but I dreamt of being someone different who would break these conventional traditions one day. I was never provided with books other than my course, but my father inoculated in me the habit of learning each and everything out there. Wherever I went, I picked up newspapers, books, or any piece of writing there. Like others children, I too enjoyed playing games in my childhood, but I gave more time to books. Due to this deep love for books, I learned many things better than people around me.

Moving on, I developed interest in computers. I always loved learning something new about technology. Being brilliant in academics, everyone in my circle encouraged me to become a doctor. From my parents to my relatives, every person was seeing me as a “future doctor”. I never had an example of any student in my social circle who was brilliant in academics and joined some field other than MBBS. I didn’t know how to muster up courage and tell it to this society that I want to pursue my career in computer science. Anyhow, when I was in 8th grade I shared my desire to study computer science and to be a software engineer in future with my family and friends. My father didn’t allow me to choose computer in my matriculation. He wanted to see me as a doctor. After this, everyone started taunting and humiliating me. They called me insane because I wanted to join field other than medical. There was not a single person to encourage me, that yes, you can do it. Due to this, I suppressed my desire of being a software engineer. I completed my matriculation, and I kept on learning about software online.

Picture: Photo by Neven Krcmarekon Unsplash

Then again in FSC, when I was about to decide between pre-medical & pre-engineering, someone inside me was trying to say that you are not meant to be a doctor. You can’t manage to attend patients. You can’t manage to cram all those things about human structure, and the most importantly, this career will not give you free time. Your aims are different. You dream to serve community in other ways. So, you should talk to your parents and ask them to let you do FSC pre-engineering. However, I could not muster up courage to do so. After joining college, every single thing part of this medical journey was hard for me. There wasn’t anyone who knew that I cried every night. No one knew that I was dying inside, and maybe no one cared enough for me than what ‘they’ wanted to see me become in the future. I was getting an educational degree that was not helping me to learn something. I was cramming all day long, I was not happy with all that was happening in my life, and I wasn’t satisfied. However, a smile on my father’s face in the morning made all my day worthwhile. I don’t have words to explain the situation I was going through in my life. Though, it was not some sort of physical pain, but it was hurting my soul immensely. My insides were crumbled into thousands of pieces. I was melancholic and depressed.

Picture: Photo by Christian Sterkon Unsplash

I tried my best to be a doctor for the sake of this society, but when my FSC result was announced, I scored low grades. Actually, they were not low grades, but they were not as brilliant as always. Suddenly, everyone changed their behavior. Those people for whom I suppressed ‘my desire’ started behaving rudely with me. They scolded me for my negligence. All my relatives who once admired me started pointing out faults in me. None of them was even aware of the pain I was going through. Still, only because of 15-20 marks they started saying that I was not working hard.

“People, It’s over,” I screamed, but at that time of night no one was there to listen me. It took five precious years of my life to muster up the courage and oppose this society. After that long one month which was full of tears whether it was day or night. After, that long month, when I thought to quit. When I was completely blank about my life, I decided to oppose everyone. I decided to do what I always wanted to do. It took me four months to convince my whole family to let me decide about my career. I had to argue with every single person, from my siblings to my cousins, from my parents to my uncles, from my neighbors to the person I only met once in my life.

What I learned in this struggle is so precious, and something I think should be shared with the world. The lesson is the essence of the true education. It gives you peace of mind. It makes you a person who struggles every day to be better than before. It makes you, you.


Written by: Wardah Noor | Cover photo by  Ahmad Odeh on Unsplash

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