Gurukula: The Ancient Education System

Gurukula: The Ancient Education System. We all know why education is important? what are the repercussions of a proper education? how it is important for the development of the socio-economic condition of any country. But have we ever thought about WHAT IS EDUCATION??

EDUCATION is learning about mathematics, science, geography, arts, etc subjects in school OR  Getting degrees from colleges makes you educated?? or running in the race of scoring highest marks among your friends in school or college? or passing each semester just for a degree so that you can apply for jobs and make money. MONEY, today money is as important as oxygen, these are now the prima facie, definitions of modern education.

Let us go back to ancient times, to know what education is and how the concept of learning developed. India is a country with boosted the tradition of education since ancient times. one of the famous educational systems practiced in India in the ancient times was The Gurukul System.


This concept of teaching is very different from today’s concept of teaching, school and colleges are very different from gurukula lets see how?

Gurukula is a residential schooling system,  Shishyas living in proximity to the guru,  within the same house.  Shishyas reside together as equals, irrespective of their social standing, learn from the guru and help the guru in his day-to-day life, including washing clothes, cooking, etc. the main focus was to teach how to live in a natural surrounding with other shishyas, to make them learn about brotherhood, love, respect, discipline, humanity basically to teach them how to be a better person who can not only be useful for oneself but to others too, gurukul teach them to live together with love and brotherhood to stand equally to share your knowledge with one another to help one another. Typically, a guru does not receive fees from a Shishyas studying with him.


At the end of his studies, a Shishya offers the guru Dakshina before leaving the ashram. The Gurudakshina is a gesture of acknowledgment, respect, and thanks, which may be monetary, but may also be a special task the teacher wants the student to accomplish.when we were kids we all have seen Hindi mythology serials of Lord  Krishna. friendship of Lord Krishna and sudama how they lived together in the ashrama with brotherhood irrespective of their social standings. we have plenty of examples related to guru-shishya tradition like Arjun and Lord Krishna from Mahabharat. 

There were 26 different ways of teaching according to the ancient education system. Some of them are now prevalently as group discussion, a conversation, indirect teaching and many other forms of teachings. Indirect teaching is learning through stories.

  • The Ananda Marga Gurukula. It is not a religious school in the Hindu tradition but rather a secular academic institution based on universal spiritual principles.
  • Vivekananda College near Madurai is a NAAC accredited `A’ grade autonomous college that is run under a Gurukula system.
  • Swaminarayan Gurukul of the Swaminarayan Sampraday has been established.
  • International Society for Krishna Consciousness established Gurukulas for children, providing academic as well as Gaudiya Vaishnava spiritual instruction in a boarding-school environment.
  • The Bhaktivedanta Gurukula and Internation School, founded in 1977, is a gurukul located in Vrindavan, India. The school cultivates a cultural and Vedic lifestyle while providing a high school degree from the ICSE board.

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