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DEO's Inspection

By Karmayogi

Inspection is an annual event of great moment in a school. There is no such inspection at the level of college. The DEOs will spend the lion's share of their speech on English teaching and divide the rest over all the other subjects. In addressing the staff of the school, any DEO spends an hour. Out of that, fifty minutes will be absorbed by his pronouncements on English and the rest will receive some passing reference. Tamil, Hindi and Sanskrit will not be referred to at all by the inspecting authorities. No DEO will spend more than ten minutes in a Tamil class. Often his assistants will supervise the Tamil class. There was a famous Tamil Pandit in a school. His name was Palaniswami Sivachariar. In his own village he was head of a Mutt. His scholarship in Tamil was consummate. No one knew his name. Everyone called him Pandit, especially Peria Pandit – Senior Pandit.

Tamil Pandits sing the Tamil poems. It is the tradition. Poems in Tamil sung in the class change the atmosphere of the class. The school he was working in lacked discipline, but in his class there was not only perfect discipline but also pin drop SILENCE. Once during an inspection, the DEO came to his class. He was entranced by his teaching and did not leave the class till the bell rang. Even after the bell rang, he would not leave the class. Seeing his attitude, the Pandit continued teaching. The next period was over. The bell did not make an impression on the DEO. The Tamil Pandit's teaching made an impression. Most of the Tamil poems, especially the devotional songs, are celestial. The old Sangam literature belongs to the class of world literature. But the Spirit in them comes out when they are sung. This Pandit was no mere Tamil Pandit. He was a scholar of eminence. And he enjoyed a ringing voice essential for singing.

It is said when Tansen, Akbar's musician, sang, the deer from adjacent places would come to listen. Music is an easy vehicle for the Spirit, as it is divine by nature and constitution. The SPIRIT in any work will emerge if the suitable vehicle or medium is supplied. This Tamil pandit was capable of making the DEO listen to the poems for three periods, as he was able to evoke the Spirit in the poems. To do so in life – to bring out the Spirit in life - is to make it celestial, sweet, harmonious. It will be life of inner Peace and outer Joy. In such a life, problems as we know now cannot exist.
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