Doesn’t matter where, how, who we get our lessons from. What matters is that we have learnt

Life long learning process

Illustration: Ratna Sagar Shrestha/ THT

I work in a surgical unit. Wound site dressing is a very common procedure in our unit. Once I was assigned to a patient who was draining profusely from the drain site. I kept on changing dressings, packed it with gauzes but it would soak the every next hour. In the meantime, the rest of my work was all pending. One of my juniors had been observing my tireless efforts. So she came and requested me to secure the site by placing five to six Swiss-rolled gauzes and pack them. As all my efforts were going in vain, and I was standing on the brink of frustration, I bought her advice and gave it a try. Dramatically, the soaking in the wound was less due to the pressure of the rolled gauze and it did look neater than before. I asked her how she had known about the method and she gave an innocent answer: “Internet”. I thanked her for sharing her piece of knowledge. Moreover, I started following her advice in every procedure — it is always safe.

I believe juniors are like one of those automated machines in active mode and with diverse mind. They are eager to learn new things. Therefore, they hunt them, surf Internet, read references and researches. They might probably think being archaic is a bore. And so, learning from them is fun and catchy. Seniors must let their egos aside and learn from the ideas of all.

— Dita Niraula, Min Bhawan Kathmandu

I learned a lesson from an unexpected person — a child. Once I was travelling to Bhaktapur from Old Bus Park. It was rush hour and I managed to get a seat. People were getting sandwiched gradually. An old lady in her 60s boarded the bus and was looking for an empty seat to sit. She passed me and stood near me. I didn’t think of giving her my seat because the seat that I sitting on was neither reserved seats for females nor for old people. All of a sudden, a girl younger than me, about 12-14 years of age, gave her seat to the old woman. I felt so awkward at that moment but it was an enlightening experience for me.

— Manish Paudel, Katari 10, Udaypur

On my trip home, I saw a seven-year-old boy putting a banana peel in his bag instead of throwing it. He did the same with all the waste he created. Curiously, I asked him the reason for his activity as I used to throw litter anywhere. His reply shocked me. He answered that he will throw the litter in dustbin. I decided to follow his thought.

I see no point of being embarrassed to learn from juniors, friends or any other person.

— Surya Prakash Yadav, Siraha

I was preparing for my back paper of Class XII board exams. My brother, who is three years younger to me, was giving the same paper as a regular student. We prepared together for the paper which consisted 40 per cent of Mathematics. He taught me the entire Mathematics portion. I passed the exam with a better score than I could have done left to myself.

Professionally, I’m a high-school Mathematics teacher. One day I was preparing for another day’s class. I was stuck with one question which I couldn’t solve. Finally I decided that the question was wrong. Next day, before I announced it in my classroom, one of my students showed me the solution. I was assured that he did it himself. The incident changed my perception completely — teacher may learn from their student.

I have a son studying in pre-primary level. He loves to watch cartoons. Most of his leisure time, he watches cartoons and animated English movies on my laptop. Sometimes I even join him. Normally he keeps on reciting the cartoon characters and their dialogues. As a result, the words that I have never studied are becoming familiar to me. And I am getting updated with my vocabulary in English language.

— Suman T

Learning is a continuous process in human life. There are many sources to learn from. From parents at home to teachers in the school to books and media — there are varied sources of knowledge. Among them youngsters who are brainier than us and keen about learning and knowing new things can be good teachers. This is the age of information and technology and children are very eager to know about it and gain knowledge on it as well. In fact, they are forward in this regard and I would like to share one of my experiences. I had gone to Sydney, Australia to my daughter’s family six months ago. Her family had moved to a new house in a new place, and was arranging their belongings. During the process, we figured that the TV was not working despite our trying. My daughter was about dispose it, when her eight-year-old granddaughter operated the TV using her knowledge.

— Deepak Raj Poudyal, Sukedhara, Kathmandu

Learning process should not be confined to seniors, teachers and parents only. We can learn from anyone. We must be able to clear our confusion to people who are knowledgeable in that topic whether the person is a colleague or a junior. I have had the experience of learning from my junior. I was in Class X and I was having problem in Trigonometry. I had heard that one junior student Sundar Chapagain of Class IX was talented in Trigonometry. I asked him to teach me Trigonometry without any hesitation. He taught me so nicely that I became interested in the subject. After discussing with him the problems, and regular practice, finally I was able to solve the problems of Trigonometry myself.

— Ravikant Yadav, Majhariya-06, Bara

I am 18-year-old boy who loves to research everything. I am not easily satisfied with things that I take help from my seniors and juniors. And in this process, I have realised that seniors are of full of inspiration while juniors are full of imagination and we love imagination because without imagination nothing is possible. I love to converse with others in different topics. During such conversations, I noticed that seniors were easily satisfied with my express thoughts but I had to invest a lot of my physical and mental ability to convince the juniors. The juniors wouldn’t believe me because they are very resourceful in the world of technology. So, this helped me develop my skills and knowledge. This is a modern era and there is no shame to learn from juniors because knowledge is knowledge, no matter where it comes from.

— Satish Kandel

Learning is a never ending process. We can learn from anyone. To take a name, I learn a great deal from my younger brother. He is gentle and patient, and on a bigger picture, he is more mature than me. I discuss many daily matters with him and take his opinions which are of great help.

— Anonymous

In this world we can learn anything from anyone and it’s not needful that the person should be senior to us. We can even learn from those who are many years junior to us. Well I have some instances where I have been taught something useful as well as important by my juniors. I still remember the instance when one of my cousin brothers both helped and taught me how to download a highly popular game on my tablet. At that time, I was really happy and even played that game with him.

— Pratik Shrestha, Buddhanagar, Baneshwor

People start to learn basic knowledge and skills at home from their parents. Then he learns from society including school and university. But learning doesn’t stop here. Every moment, people are learning from someone or the other or something. I have had such experience.

When I was studying at the university level, I required computer programming skill for one of my projects but I lacked knowledge in the subject. I shared my problem with my younger brother who was studying IT. He started to teach me. He guided me and I was able to complete my work well. In the learning process, we share our experiences and problems not only with seniors, teachers and parents but also to those younger to us from whom we can learn more thing easily.

— Prakash Gyawali, Kirtipur

In this circle of life, everything we see is a part of learning. We are learning consciously or sub-consciously. It is said that nature is an open book and it is just a matter of curiosity to learn. But when it comes to learning from the junior or from some other people, we feel inferior, and hesitate. Sometimes we may get huge life lesson where we might not expect from. I had the same experience when I was in school. Once there was debate competition and my partner who was a junior and I were preparing for the competition. She seemed to be shy and introvert and I assumed that she lacked knowledge. But when she was told to prepare for the topic, I was surprised to see her potential and knowledge. That is why no one is small according to her age. It is the capabilities of a person that makes a person great. So, we should never hesitate to learn from anyone as everyone has their own potential to do things differently.

— Ankush Adhikari, Old Baneshwor, Kathmandu

I sincerely believe that the best education and moral lessons I learnt in life has been from the innumerable inspiring stories from the epics like Ramayana and Mahabharata; and ancient stories of the Jatakas, Panchatantra and Betal Panchabinshati narrated by my dearest grandmother when I was a little boy. She has been the greatest teacher that I still adore in my life. When I grew older and could read and explore materials on my own, I was heavily inspired by the famous Lord of the Rings trilogy written by British author JRR Tolkein. The central character of the series, a courageous and honourable hobbit by the name Frodo Baggins, turned into a great philosophical teacher for me at that age and still inspires me. The character of Frodo Baggins attracts me for his enormous courage, sincerity and ability to withstand monumental challenges, extreme pain and hardships to destroy an evil ring. Although a fictional character, his journey with his fellow Hobbit friends to destroy the ring is highly inspirational. In spite of his physical restriction due to his small height and limited physical strength, Frodo won my respect and transformed into my imaginary friend, philosopher and a guide for the challenges and pains of life. Frodo always inspires me to look beyond my limitations and provides me the strength to jump for unknown challenges of life.

— Saikat Kumar Basu

I had never known about the football star of this generation — Luis Lionel Andres Messi. I heard his name from one of the children studying in Class I about two years ago. Since then, I’ve been watching him play in various international and club matches. Now, I’ve become a die-hard fan of Messi. My life has drastically changed after watching this amazing legend. Messi is my source of inspiration; he is my hero. I owe a part of my personality development to Lionel Messi.

— Sanjog Karki, Tansen-6,Basantapur, Palpa

I believe learning is all about what you have learnt in life rather than from whom you have learnt. There are some exceptions who hesitate in learning from their juniors and colleagues who are younger to them. But in my case, there are many experiences where I have learnt something or the other from people with whom I had never expected to learn something especially from the younger ones. Currently, the new young generation is much more talented, experienced, smart and up-to-date with every sort of new thing. So, in this regard the younger ones can guide their seniors in an amazing way. This has changed my perception towards learning and changed me altogether. And learning means achieving knowledge and ideas in life, whether you receive it from your juniors or seniors the main thing is what you have learnt.

— Tejaswi Pahari, Jawalakhel, Lalitpur

A big question always hits my mind when I see some people asking their juniors just to listen and not speak in the middle when elders or seniors are talking. Give them a chance to speak. Who knows they might know things that you have never even heard of! I am an MBA graduate. In some eyes I might be good enough but I lag behind in knowledge of many things.

During my early teens, I happened to meet one of my friend’s relative who was five-years-old. He was a little cute boy playing with his toy car. But an hour later, I saw him in front of desktop and he was actually teaching us how to set musical background in the desktop. I knew the basic skills of computer but I didn’t know about what that child was teaching. He was a total expert for me. I might be a butt of jokes for not knowing such basics but I literally don’t care. That day I got a changed perception that little ones can know more than you do! I believe learning is not bound by age or anything. It’s okay to ask questions to anyone when you are eager to learn about anything. Be a little child, a teen, a junior, a teacher, a senior or your parents, they may know more than you do by experience or by knowledge.

— Sudha Luitel

Learning is something that one should never stop in his/her entire life. We should have the audacity to learn from every situation we face. Learning may not be easy and simple all the time and may require your time and great effort but with continuous devotion and passion, one can definitely be specialised in his/her field of interest. However there are people who fear that learning from someone younger might affect their position or make them inferior in society. Such egotistic belief does not let them learn and explore new things.

There are many things that I have learned from my juniors as well as seniors in different phases of my life that have helped me to become the person I am today. Therefore, we should always remain curious and hyperactive to learn because the thing we learn now may be very beneficial to us in future.

— Arzoo Pokharel, Katyani Chowk, Kathmandu

A person is never judged by his/her age but is judged by his knowledge, education and capacity. Though someone is junior to us, we should not emasculate ourselves by hesitating to learn their good aspects. Respectful status is important but learning from juniors and colleagues does not degrade our status.

Today my sources of inspiration are the great young sport stars of our country — Gaurika Singh and Sandeep Lamichhane. Every time I remember them; hear news about them; watch them on TV, I am greatly motivated towards my work. And I want to do something worthwhile in future. So, I don’t think learning from juniors make us in fact “junior”.

— Madhav Ghimire, Ratopul, Kathmandu

It doesn’t matter from where we are gaining knowledge and information. The source of knowledge is not important. The important thing is to gain knowledge. In our Nepali society mainly juniors’ view are not given space as they are considered as the immature ones. People don’t understand that the knowledge and information don’t come from the age but knowledge comes from the mind and from the books. Usually our parents don’t listen to our view as they think our view cannot match to their perceptions. My sister being younger than me shares information as well as gives me knowledge about the different situations of life. Whatever she learns from the college she shares it with me and I get to learn about different issues. She even helps me to take important decisions when I get confused. So, I think people have to listen to everyone’s view. It doesn’t matter how old they are.

— Anonymous


QUESTION OF THE WEEK

Many times in life you will feel stuck. You are too much in your comfort zone that you just can’t come out of it while your aspirations and dreams seem to be moving further and further away. How do you or did you handle such situations in life? Illustrate.

Send your replies in not more than 200 words by Friday, August 26 by 2 pm to Features Department, The Himalayan Times, e-mail: features@thehimalayantimes.com