The Centre for Indian Knowledge Systems (IKS), Chanakya University had
organized Guru Purnima Celebrations at its Brigade Orchards campus, on 13th July
2022 (Wednesday) which was the full moon day of Āṣāḍha month. This day is
traditionally observed as Guru Purnima to honour one’s guru or the entire GuruParamparā (the lineage of gurus). It is also known as Vyāsa Pūrṇimā as it marks the birthday of Veda Vyāsa, the sage who has made invaluable contribution
towards Indian traditions. A program titled ‘Guru Smaraṇam’ was organised by
the centre as an opportunity for the campus community to remember their
revered gurus and reflect on the qualities which they would like to emulate in
their lives, whether inside the class or outside it. The program began with an
invocation prayer to Dakshinamurthy by Smt. Saiswaoopa Iyer, Assistant
Professor, School of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences. Following this Dr
Ramakrishna Pejathaya, Associate Professor, Centre for IKS, enlightened the
audience about the significance of the event. He observed that this day was
special in the Hindu, Bauddha and Jaina traditions. Next, Dr Vinayachandra
Banavathy, director of theCentre, opened the program with his remarks. Drawing
on the Taittirīya Upaniṣad, he observed how open-minded and critical the Gurus
were in facilitating the inner growth of their pupils.
After this, the floor was open to the audience to share their memories of their
favourite teachers. Apart from ‘teaching’ and ‘learning’ the most important
qualities mentioned by the participants were ‘inspire,’ ‘counsel’ and ‘transform’.
This gave an idea of what it takes to be an impactful teacher. Following this, Prof.
Yashvantha Dongre, Hon’ble Vice Chancellor, CU, who was presiding over the
event, spoke to the audience and reminded them of the role our peers play in the
teaching-learning process. He stressed that as an academician one must
continuously strive to learn from one’s peers. The program was conducted by Dr
Vinayak Rajat Bhat, Associate Professor and the vote of thanks was delivered byDr
R. Venkata Raghavan, Assistant Professor, Centre for IKS. In summary, this was not
only a beautiful tribute to the gurus but also a timely reminder, especiallyfor all the faculty, of the qualities they themselves want to incorporate in their own teaching and perhaps pass on to their students! As Chanakya University prepares to welcome its very first batch of students, this occasion gave everyone a chance to pause for a moment and reflect on what it is to be a teacher and draw inspiration from our beloved teachers.