What were the objectives of ancient education system in India
Education in India dates back to the 3rd century BC. It mainly consisted of religious training elements and imparting of traditional knowledge. The education was imparted orally by sages and scholars while palm leaves and the barks of trees were used as writing materials. Both formal education and informal education were imparted at the time and indigenous education was imparted at temples, tols, Gurukuls, and the like. The foundation of ancient Indian education was epistemological and philosophical traditions revolving around the idea of the ephemerality of life and world, concept of ultimate death, and the futility of mundane pleasures.
Main objectives of ancient education system in India
1. All round Development: The prime focus was in the physical, spiritual, intellectual, and moral spheres of life.
2. Human Values: It stressed on values of honesty, self-reliance, discipline, humility, and respect for everyone.
3. Sources of Knowledge: It mainly revolved around the Vedas, Brahmanas, Upanishads, and Dharmasutras.
4. Physical Development: It focused on learning as well as physical development.
5. Balance with Nature: Students were also taught to emphasise upon the balance between nature and human beings.
6. Serve: Students not only learned from their Gurus but served them as well.
7. Character Development: The main aim of the ancient education system was to develop the character of an individual and enable them to adopt positive values.
Sources of Education System in India
1. Vedas: The four Vedas – namely, Rigveda, Samaveda, Yajurveda, and Atharvaveda fall among the oldest literatures of the world. They are considered to be the original source of ancient Indian philosophy.
2. Gurukula: They were ancient Indian residential Hindu schools where the students lived in the same building with the Guru.
3. Sutra Literature: It dates back to 600 BC and it embodied the code of duties and principles of conduct for teachers and students. It mainly consists of six Vedangas.
4. Buddhist System: Their main goal was to achieve Nirvana or salvation and purity of character.
Education in India was not very structured, organised, and delivered in huge buildings like the modern days. These are the characteristics of ancient Indian education.