Here, you will find summaries, questions, answers, textbook solutions, pdf, extras etc. of (Nagaland Board) NBSE Class 11 Education Chapter 6: Indigenous Education in India. These solutions, however, should be only treated as references and can be modified/changed.
The evolution of education in India has been a fascinating journey, marked by the influence of various cultures, religions, and philosophies. The Vedic period laid the foundation with the Gurukula system, where students lived with their teachers, learning the Vedas and other sciences. This system emphasized character building and discipline. The Buddhist system of education, which emerged later, was more democratic and open to all, focusing on both spiritual and secular subjects.
The Islamic system of education introduced Maktab and Madrassa, institutions that imparted both religious and secular education. The Islamic system encouraged girls’ education and vocational training, breaking the barriers of caste and gender.
The Christian missionaries, who arrived with the East India Company, played a pivotal role in shaping modern education in India. They established schools, translated the Bible into local languages, and focused on primary education for the poor. They also provided free food, lodging, books, and slates to students, making education accessible to all.
The indigenous education system in India has been a blend of these diverse influences, each contributing to the rich tapestry of Indian education. Today, India boasts a wide range of educational institutions, from pre-school classes to professional colleges, many of which are run by Christian missionaries. The legacy of these historical systems of education continues to shape the educational landscape of India, making it a unique blend of tradition and modernity.
Textual questions and answers
Very Short Answer Type Questions
1. What was Upanayana?
Answer: Upanayana was the initiation ceremony for formal education in the Vedic education system. It was held for the Brahmins at the age of 8, for the Kshatriyas at 11, and for the Vaishyas at 12. At the ceremony, the boy was told that he was now a Brahmacharee and should develop himself continuously until able to retain his identity with Brahma throughout life.
2. Where is Nalanda?
Answer: Nalanda was located near Patna in India. The Chinese scholar Fa Hien visited and studied at Nalanda, describing it as the most famous Sangh.
3. What is meant by “Dharmacharya”?
Answer: Dharmacharya means “Doctor of Religion” in the Buddhist education system.
4. Who acquired the tittle of ‘Dharmacharya’ from Nalanda?
Answer: Hiuen Tsang studied at Nalanda for several years and obtained the degree of Dharmacharya.
5. What is the literal meaning of ‘Parishad’?
Answer: The literal meaning of Parishad is Council or Assembly.
6. Name the king during whose reign Hindu and Muslim students studied together.
Answer: Akbar was the king during whose reign Hindu and Muslim students studied together in educational institutions.
7. Name the society which opened schools in Madras in 1805.
Answer: The London Missionary Society opened schools in Madras in 1805.
8. Who were the first two Missionaries who first reached Sadiya in 1866?
Answer: Rev. Nathan Brown and Oliver Cutter were the first two missionaries to reach Sadiya in Assam in 1836.
9. What was the name of the first college started in Bombay?
Answer: The Jesuits College was the first college started by the Portuguese in Bombay in 1580.
10. Which were the early centres of Christian education in India?
Answer: The early centres of Christian education in India were Bombay, Calcutta and Madras.
Short Answer Type Questions
1. What were the four phases of human life during the Vedic period?
Answer: During the Vedic period, life was divided into four phases or ashramas:
- Brahmacharya: Where the person leads a bachelor life and spends time in studies. Students lived in union with God. This stage focused on education and included the practice of celibacy.
- Grhastha: After completing studies, the individual gets married and leads a family life, fulfilling responsibilities of the family and producing offspring.
- Vanaprastha: After fulfilling duties as a father and husband, one leads the life of a hermit, spending time in meditation.
- Sanyasa: When one becomes too old, they detach themselves from the world, become free from emotional attachments, become an ascetic and devote time to prayer and meditation.
2. What was the contribution of Serampore Trio in the field of education?
Answer: The Serampore Trio consisting of William Carey, Marshman and Ward settled in Serampore near Calcutta. They opened schools in and around Calcutta and promoted education and culture in North East India. Carey was a preacher, Marshman was a teacher, and Ward was a printer. They studied local languages, translated the Bible, and published books, newspapers, dictionaries and grammar books.
3. What was the core of Buddha’s teaching?
Answer: The core of Buddha’s teaching contained three major tenets:
Wisdom was the goal and deep meditation or concentration was crucial for achieving wisdom.
4. What are the two basic aims in Muslim system of Education?
Answer: The two basic aims in the Muslim system of education were:
- Religious – Study of Koran and moral/spiritual disciplines.
- Secular – Synthesis of secular knowledge and religious beliefs.
Long Answer Type Questions
1. Explain the Gurukula system of education in ancient times.
Answer: The Gurukula system was the primary form of education in ancient India. Generally, the children had their early education at home and stayed with their parents. When one was going for formal education, a ritual was to be performed. This ritual was known as “Upanayana” (initiation ceremony for formal education).
Upanayana was held for the Brahmins at the age of 8, for the Kshatriyas at the age of 11, and for the Vaishyas at the age of 12. At the initiation ceremony, the boy told that he was a Brahmacharee and therefore he should develop himself continuously till he was able to retain his identity with Brahma throughout life.
There were three means of realisation of Brahma, which were knowledge, action and devotion. The children had to leave their homes for undergoing ‘Upanayana’ and entered the guru’s (teacher’s) home or ashram.
The students lived in the house of the guru (teacher) and received education. Guru used to give his students free education, food, and accommodation. Students in the gurukula were required to do household work, collect firewood and take care of the cattle of the guru.
The guru was required to treat his pupils (students or disciples) as his own sons. There was no prescribed syllabus, no printed books, no specified place and no specified time.
2. Explain Pathshala in detail.
Answer: With the passage of time, the number of disciples (students) of a guru became his status symbol. Therefore, the guru started admitting more and more students into his family, which gradually led to a system of education known as ‘Pathshala’. In this system of education, a separate shed was constructed where formal classes were conducted to impart education to the students. The methods of teaching were based on the principles of human psychology. The guru gave oral instruction to his pupils and the stress was on alphabet and syllables, accent, and euphonic combination. When the guru was satisfied with the pronunciation (shruti) of the pupil, he was allowed to go ahead for meditation.
3. What was Parishad? Discuss its importance.
Answer: Parishad means Council or assembly. In the Upanishads, it is mentioned as the assembly of learned and wise persons, where great problems relating to philosophy were discussed, debated, and solved. Parishads also meant places where learned and wise Brahmins lived in large numbers. In a nutshell, Parishad was the place of higher learning where mature, educated people of different thoughts used to have discussions and debates.
The attitude of the Parishad was always liberal as the learned persons from different ‘Charans’ (school of thoughts) lived together and searched answers to philosophical problems of the world. Parishads were a very special feature which was found only in India. While in other parts of the world the learned were divided among themselves based on their own philosophies (schools of thoughts), in India the people of different thoughts engaged in arguments and tried to win each other.
The development of divergent philosophical thoughts that co-exist in India is the result of this system. Co-existence in diversity!
4. Explain the Buddhist system of education in detail.
Answer: The Buddhist system of education was open to all, irrespective of caste. Even the preceptors often were not Brahmins. This system was well organized in monasteries. Unlike the Brahmanical system, there was no complete detachment from worldly pleasures in the Buddhist system of education. The difference between preceptor and pupil was in the level of spiritual knowledge. In the Buddhist system, both spiritual and secular subjects were studied. The curriculum at Nalanda, a famous Buddhist educational center, included subjects like Sanskrit, Grammar, Metaphysics, Philosophy, and Medicine. The monasteries had two-storied buildings and had both single and double rooms for students. There was a stone bench and shelves for each student. Large earthen pots discovered from the site of Nalanda during excavations suggest that they had a common meal system.
5. Compare the Vedic system and Buddhist system of education.
Answer: The Vedic system of education was based on the Gurukula system where the student lived with the teacher in the teacher’s house while doing household work and acquiring education. This system was more rigid and was not open to all castes. The Buddhist system, on the other hand, was open to all and was more democratic. The difference between the teacher and the student was based on the level of spiritual knowledge. The Buddhist system was well organized in monasteries and included both spiritual and secular subjects. Unlike the Vedic system, the Buddhist system did not advocate complete detachment from worldly pleasures.
6. Differentiate between Maktab and Madrassa.
Answer: The Muslim System of education had two types of schools. While Maktab was an elementary school and every Muslim student was required to attend Maktab to learn Koran and daily prayers, Madrassa, on the other hand, was a centre for higher learning. Muslim education was imparted through these madrassas. Madrassa had secular subjects also, like literature, logic, prosody and philosophy as a part of the curriculum.
7. Compare and contrast the Vedic system of education with Islamic system of education.
Answer: The Vedic and Islamic systems of education had some similarities as well as differences.
Similarities: In both systems, the relation between teacher and student was very cordial and positive. The teachers were renowned scholars in both systems. Spiritual and secular subjects were taught in both systems. Education was free in both systems. Both systems had well-known centers of learning.
Differences: The Vedic system focused on studying the Vedas while the Islamic system focused on studying the Koran. The Vedic system had a caste system while the Islamic system did not have a caste system. The Islamic system was more democratic. The Vedic system emphasized detachment from worldly pleasures while that was not the case in the Islamic system. Girls’ education was encouraged in the Islamic system but not given much importance in the Vedic system.
8. Explain the contribution of Christian Missionaries in Assam.
Answer: In Assam, Christian Missionaries were pioneers of modern education. The Assam area came under British rule in 1826 through the treaty of Yandabo. In 1836, Rev. Nathan Brown and Oliver Cutter reached Sadiya, while as per record, Dr. Bronson, another missionary, had settled in the villages of Sibasagar prior to that. They studied Assamese, and translated ‘Bible’ into Assamese. ‘Bible’ was the first Assamese book to be printed. In addition to it, the first newspaper (Arunodai), the first Grammar book, and the first Dictionary in Assamese were all written and printed by the missionaries. Missionaries did a great work in the history of Assamese language and education in Assam and surrounding hill states.
It can be said that there has been a great contribution of Christian Missionaries to the present system of education in Assam. Christian Missionaries, even today, contribute in the field of education. There is a big chain of educational institutions established and run by Christian Missionaries, from pre-school classes to professional colleges in Assam.
Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) Questions
1. How did the four ashramas during vedic period help in the growth and spread of education? Analyse.
Answer: The four ashramas or stages of life during the Vedic period played a significant role in the growth and spread of education.
The first phase, Brahmacharya, was dedicated to studies and education. Students used to live in union with God, focusing on education and practicing celibacy. Vedas were the subject matter of study during those ancient days. A student learned the correct pronunciation of the Vedic verses and also learned their meanings. Other sciences like Astronomy, Etymology, Prosody, and Grammar were also taught to the students. This system of education was not only about acquiring knowledge but also about character building and developing a sense of discipline and responsibility.
The second phase, Grhastha, was the householder stage where an individual, after completing the studies, got married and led a family life, fulfilling the responsibility of the family and also produced offspring. This phase ensured the continuation of societal norms and values, including the importance of education.
The third phase, Vanaprastha, was the hermit stage where one spent time in meditation after fulfilling the duties as a father and husband. This stage emphasized the importance of spiritual knowledge and wisdom.
The fourth and final phase, Sanyasa, was the stage of renunciation where one detached himself from the world, became free from emotional attachments, became an ascetic, and devoted his time in prayer and meditation. This stage highlighted the ultimate aim of becoming one with God.
In this way, the four ashramas during the Vedic period helped in the growth and spread of education by establishing a structured system of learning and personal development that covered both secular and spiritual knowledge.
2. What was the role of East India Company in the field of education?
Answer: The East India Company came to India for business. The missionaries who were working for East India Company established schools and worked very hard and contributed so much that it had far-reaching effects on the culture. They contributed mostly in building up the new system of education in India. Christian missionaries came to India for taking care of spiritual affairs of the office and staff of the East India Company. In addition, they had the purpose of spreading Christianity among the poor local Indians. They learnt the local languages and translated ‘Bible’ into local languages. They opened schools where the local language was the medium of instruction. Early Missionaries confined their activities mainly to primary education for the poor. They also supplied free food, free lodging, free books and free slates to the students. During those days, education was not the concern of the state. Mostly locals also were indifferent to education. Though East India Company was a commercial body and was interested to improve their financial status, but it also helped the growth of education in India. Bombay, Calcutta and Madras were fast-growing cities. Missionaries concentrated their activities in these places.
3. Discuss the contribution of Christian Missionaries in the field of Education in India.
Answer: Christian missionaries have made a significant contribution to the present system of education in India. They continue to contribute in the field of education even today. There is a big chain of educational institutions established and run by Christian Missionaries, from pre-school classes to professional colleges in Assam.
The missionaries who were working for the East India Company established schools and worked very hard and contributed so much that it had far-reaching effects on the culture. They contributed mostly in building up the new system of education in India. Christian missionaries came to India for taking care of spiritual affairs of the office and staff of the East India Company.
In addition, they had the purpose of spreading Christianity among the poor local Indians. They learnt the local languages and translated ‘Bible’ into local languages. They opened schools where the local language was the medium of instruction. Early Missionaries confined their activities mainly to primary education for the poor. They also supplied free food, free lodging, free books and free slates to the students.
Additional/extra questions and answers
1. What is the general consensus about the Vedas in terms of their age and origin?
Answer: The general consensus is that among the existing literature of the world, Vedas are the oldest. The exact age of the Vedas cannot be ascertained, but their place of origin is generally accepted to be India.
2. What was the view of ancient Indians regarding the learning of Vedas?
Answer: In ancient times, Indians believed that every individual is indebted to the great ‘Rishis’ and ‘Saints’ and should repay this debt by learning the Vedas. Therefore, the learning of Vedas was considered a spiritual obligation.
3. Describe the four phases of life during the Vedic period.
Answer: Life was divided into four phases or ashramas during the Vedic period:
- Brahmacharya: In this phase, a person led a bachelor’s life and focused on studies, living in union with God and practicing celibacy.
- Grhastha: After completing their studies, an individual entered this phase, got married, started a family, and fulfilled familial responsibilities, including the production of offspring.
- Vanaprastha: In this phase, after fulfilling the duties as a father and husband, one led the life of a hermit, spending time in meditation.
- Sanyasa: When a person became too old, they entered this phase and detached themselves from the world. They became free from emotional attachments, became an ascetic and devoted their time to prayer and meditation.
4. What was the role of the Brahmins in the Vedic education system?
Answer: The role of Brahmins in the Vedic education system was significant. They mostly served as teachers, imparting knowledge from the Vedas and other sciences like Astronomy, Etymology, Prosody and Grammar. Their supremacy had overshadowed the Vedic system of education and spirituality, leading to the system also being referred to as the Brahmanical system.
5. What were the subjects of study during the Vedic period?
Answer: During the Vedic period, the main subject of study was the Vedas. Students learned the correct pronunciation of the Vedic verses and their meanings. In addition to the Vedas, students were also taught other sciences like Astronomy, Etymology, Prosody, and Grammar.
6. What were the three institutes of learning during the Vedic period?
Answer: The three institutes of learning during the Vedic period were Gurukula, Pathshala, and Parishads. These institutes primarily functioned under the supervision of the Brahmins, and students were taught a range of subjects from the Vedas to other allied sciences.
52. How have Christian Missionaries contributed to the present system of education in Assam?
Answer: Christian Missionaries have made a great contribution to the present system of education in Assam. They continue to contribute in the field of education even today. There is a big chain of educational institutions, from pre-school classes to professional colleges, established and run by Christian Missionaries in Assam.
1. What is the place of origin of the Vedas?
A. China B. Persia C. Egypt D. India
Answer: D. India
2. What was considered a spiritual obligation in ancient India?
A. Paying Taxes B. Learning Vedas C. Building Temples D. Going on Pilgrimage
Answer: B. Learning Vedas
3. What is the first phase of life in the Vedic period known as?
A. Grhastha B. Brahmacharya C. Vanaprastha D. Sanyasa
Answer: B. Brahmacharya
4. Which phase of life in the Vedic period was devoted to family life and responsibilities?
A. Brahmacharya B. Grhastha C. Vanaprastha D. Sanyasa
Answer: B. Grhastha
5. What was the main subject of study during the Vedic period?
A. Upanishads B. Puranas C. Vedas D. Epics
Answer: C. Vedas
70. What is the chain of educational institutions established by Christian Missionaries in Assam?
A. From kindergarten to high school B. From pre-school to professional colleges C. From primary to secondary D. Only professional colleges
Answer: B. From pre-school to professional colleges
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