With Pupils at a Phoenix School

Grade XI Learners attending Motivation Class conducted by Swami Vimokshananda
Grade XI Learners attending Motivation Class conducted by Swami Vimokshananda

I expected it to be an interesting experience when I accepted the invitation from Ferndale Combined School at Phoenix to conduct a ‘Motivation class’ on Self-confidence. It turned out much more than that. It was held in the School’s auditorium on Monday, 21 July, 2008 between 1 and 2 pm for the Grade XI learners.

111 students assembled there to whom I talked in an inter-active style. 20 of them were of Indian origin and the rest 91 were African Black children. A number of Educators were also present. There were students from other communities like Muslims and Christians, besides Hindus.

Quoting Nelson Mandela’s strong determination to free this great country from the shackles of apartheid, I explained how much ‘self confidence’ in one man could turn the course of the history of a country. I narrated what kind of hardships he had to face at Robben Island prison for long 27 years and how he tackled every adverse circumstance into a positive one. His 90th birthday was recently celebrated by all his admirers throughout the world.

Swami Vimokshananda addressing the Pupils and Educators
Swami Vimokshananda addressing the Pupils and Educators

Then I dwelt on the great Saint of India, Swami Vivekananda who instilled the confidence in self, humanity and God as indispensible for the progress of the individual and the society. Inspiring incidents from his life were explained.  I also spoke of the Jesus’ saying and an incident from Mohammed’s life. I could not but admire deeply the high discipline that the pupils exhibited during the course of the class.

Thereafter Pastor Dixon, a member of the Governing Body of the School and also the Head of Ecclesia Family Church in Phoenix spoke.

The Dy Principal Mrs Naidoo gave a vote of thanks while the students honoured the guests with flowers. At the end of the class, students recited Vedic, Bilblical, Koranic and Zulu prayers.

One of the Educators later distributed “Deepika” the Children’s spiritual magazine to the interested students. This is an annual magazine brought out by Sri Sarada Devi Ashram, Asherville.