Why we need teachers
students have plenty of books and information sources we could refer to,
to do our studies on our own. So, why do we really need teachers?
Because, even though we have all these sources of information, we have
no proper understanding about what exactly is said or given in them. We
are no experts and we need a learned person to explain everything to us.
And who could do this other than teachers?
Teachers are significant personalities in our lives because, apart
from parents, they too provide us with information and guide us. They
play a key role in our education not just only teaching what is in
textbooks, but also teaching us good habits, right and wrong and good
qualities. They give us a helping hand to come up in life.
Teachers always share their knowledge with their students. They are
called store houses of knowledge. They are always occupied with their
work - teaching lessons, setting test papers, correcting home work and
so on. They are dedicated to their jobs.
Even though we have our parents at home to help us with our studies,
sometimes they do not have the time to explain everything to us. Some
have no knowledge or experience to do so. This is where teachers step in
to help.Therefore, teachers are essential for us to be educated. They
are also like companions because they are with us, in everything we do
Teachers are also called supporters because they help us in many
ways. They play an important role in moulding our characters and
changing our destiny in life.
Let them live!
Animals also have a right to live in this world just as much as we
humans do. Many plants and humans reap a lot of benefits from animals.
Even though some
are small they help plants in the pollination process. Some of these
animals are birds and also insects such as bees and butterflies.
It is true that there are many animals such as lions, bears, cheetahs
and reptiles that are dangerous and harm us. But all of them are a part
of the environment and just as much as they add beauty to nature, they
also have a role to play in the continuity of life.
Elephants participate in peraheras and it is also one of these
animals that has been chosen to carry the Sacred Tooth Relic of the
Buddha. And the Buddha preached about the importance of protecting
animals and showing kindness to them (ahimsa). But some people kill
innocent animals. Many cows and bulls are slaughtered. People sell the
animals to the butcher when they get old. Sometimes you can see tears in
their eyes when they are taken to the butcher.
People who kill animals do not know how valuable they are to us.
Think about the cows. They are like mothers to us because they give milk
for us to drink and grow. A bull helps to draw the bullockcarts and
carry goods. Horses and ponies are used to ride on. Elephants too help
to carry and pull heavy logs and other goods.
When we clear forests and cut down trees for development purposes, we
destroy their habitats. Then animals have no shelter or food to eat.
This leads to their extinction eventually. So, do not destroy their
homes and kill animals. Let them also live!
We must help the aged
will all become old one day. If people stop helping elders now who will
look after us when we become old?
Most people, when they are very old, over 80 or 85 years find that
they cannot walk without help. Some cannot walk at all. They need to
have wheelchairs to move about and unless we provide them with these,
many cannot afford to buy them. We must do this willingly and also
provide for all their other needs.
If children don’t look after their parents and elders nobody will
look after them, when they grow to be old either.
Most old people end up in ‘elders’ homes because their children have
no time for them and reject them. They live unhappy lives in such homes
because they do not have the love, care and comforts they once had. They
are lonely and sad most of the time. But some old people have children
who look after them lovingly. For instance, my parents have provided a
room, a bathroom and even a separate kitchen for my paternal
They also always send food and visit my maternal grandmother who
lives up the street, in her own house.
There is a saying “You can never repay the kindness your parents have
shown you.” You must remember their generosity to you when you were
young and try to help them when they are old.
Eradicate bad habits
At school, children are under the vigilant care of their teachers.
So, most often children pick up bad habits from their home environment.
Therefore, parents have
major role to play in eliminating such bad habits in their children and
guiding them.If parents too like teachers take time to be vigilant of
their children’s behaviour it would be easy to prevent them from
acquiring bad habits from the surroundings.
Teachers often give instructions to the children about the need to
cultivate good habits. If parents can co-operate with the teachers and
ensure that their children behave accordingly at home it will help a
great deal. Very often some children have habits that are unhygienic and
affect their health. Frequent medical checkups on their cleanliness will
help to curb bad health habits among children.
Bad habits in speech and social behaviour are generally a result of
the influences from the environment children are exposed to.
Parents should protect children from being exposed to such
environments and try to educate their children about the value of good
habits. There are many schools where children are easily trained in good
social habits by mingling with children from refined social groups. Such
schools are ideal to help children living in environments and
neighbourhoods that reek in bad health and social habits.
between man and animal
Animals as well as human beings are an essential part of Mother
didn’t weave the web of life. He is merely a strand in it. Whatever he
does to the web, he does to himself. The land doesn’t belong to man, but
man belongs to the land.” This is what Chief Seatle had to say. He
believed that all living beings belonged to Mother Nature.
In the present day, certain cruel-hearted people, treat animals in an
inhuman way. Man thinks that he has invaded and inherited the whole
world. But it is not the reality. He has gained so much because of his
brains. Yet he has no right to kill or torture animals for his pleasure
or survival. There’s another great saying by Arahath Mahinda to King
Dewanampiyatissa that focuses attention on the right of animals to live
on Earth. He said, “Birds that glide in the sky and animals that roam in
the forest have an equal right to live and move anywhere in this country
as you have. The land belongs to the all living beings. You are only its
Today, man has become very selfish. He has got the power to control
the whole world. Hence he kills innocent animals like deer, sambur, hare
and elephants for their antlers, flesh, tusks and so on.
Many animals are faced with the threat of extinction as a result of
the cruel deeds of man. Some people in the world have a desire to see
blood-curdling sights. Therefore, they torture and kill animals for
pleasure; to ease their restless mind. This wicked deed clearly shows us
how reckless man’s mind is.
As the most intelligent among all living beings man should love all
animals who depend on him. Man must not give them any pain but treat
them with affection, sympathy and kindness.
We should not forget that we belong to one family; the family of
Mother Nature. Therefore, as civilised people we must not destroy
animals who are considered as an integral part of nature.
A journey by train
Most every child likes to travel in a train. I too liked to travel by
train, so, I asked my parents to take me on a train trip. At last the
day of the train journey dawned.
I woke up early in the morning on this day and got ready quickly. By
the time I came out of my room, my mother had prepared all kinds of food
to take on the train. So I went to see my father. He too had washed the
car and packed all our bags. Then I went to my brother’s room.
He was ready with his new camera and the pair of binoculars. We then
had breakfast. Usually I am the person who finishes eating last, but I
was the first to finish that day. Next, we went to the station. While we
were awaiting the train I first heard chaffing and puffing, and then saw
the train. Mum said, “Get ready.
This is our train.” I felt very happy, when I got into the Podi
Menike train at 7.30 a .m. We sat in the observation saloon, so, I saw
the beautiful surrounding very clearly. As we passed tea estates I saw
tea pluckers plucking tea leaves joyfully.I saw tea factories on top of
the hills, which looked like toy factories.
The mountains were a beautiful blue when I looked at them through the
mist. I saw many beautiful rivers, streams, lakes and ponds. The
cascading waterfalls looked like long silver snakes in the sun light.
The train and the trees swayed to the same rhythm. So I also imitated
We stopped at a number of stations. I counted each station we passed
and stopped at. In each station I saw its name written in Sinhala,
English and Tamil. They had also written how high it was from sea level.
At each station mobile vendors and passengers got in and out of the
train. The vendors were selling vadai,gram and various other items.
When the train was about to leave the station I heard the loud
whistle of the train.
I looked out of the window and saw the guard waving a green coloured
flag. The train started to move again. I saw sun flowers on either side
of the rail road. It was beautiful to see how they bent towards the sun.
I did not even feel hungry.
But my mother gave me some sandwiches. I shared them with the other
children and ate them. As we passed through tunnels, the children hooted
and shouted. But it was time to end my enjoyable journey. We got off at
Veyangoda station. I felt very sad when the observation saloon I
travelled in passed by me.
Then I realised that thousands of little passengers like me can
travel in this train. It is a great wealth. I remembered the valuable
words written inside the train. “This is a national treasure. So protect
it as your eyes.” Indeed we should protect public property.