S-Space College of Education (사범대학) Center for Educational Research (교육종합연구원) 교육연구와 실천 Journal of the College of Education (師大論叢) vol.40/41 (1990)
깨달음으로서의 敎育 : 大乘超信論의 敎育學的 解釋
Education as Enlightenment: An Interpretation of The Awakening of Faith
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 사범대학
- 사대논총, Vol.41, pp. 1-24
- The Awakening of Faith(literally, The Discourse on the Awakening of Mahayana Faith), of which the real author has been a matter of dispute, is a most succinct, elaborate and comprehensive theoretical elucidation of the Buddhist doctrine. We find in it a metaphysical treatise on the relation of the Reality and the phenomenon, an epistemological analysis of mind, and a practical guide for the attainment of wisdom and bliss, all put into a single coherent whole. The discourse may be broken down into three consecutive phases or themes, stating 1) that mind can be defined as one entity with two aspects, the aspect of Reality and the aspect of phenomenon, 2) that mind represents one movement toward two opposite directions between the Reality and the phenomenon, and 3) that human endeavor for wisdom and bliss lies in turning the mind in its phenomenal aspect toward the Reality. In this paper, the discussion and elaboration of the above three themes has been geared to answering whether the Discourse can be interpreted as 'a theory of school education' today. Two possibilities are suggested, each answering to each of the two points of doubt that may be raised. One point of doubt is that knowledge and understanding that constitutes the school subjects cannot have any positive status according to the Discourse. The school subjects represent the results of, and the means to facilitating, the 'deluded' states of mind that should be forsaken in order to attain the Truth. However, Oakeshott's idea, in his Experience and Its Modes, can be easily translated into a theory of education perfectly in line with the Discourse, according to which the school subjects are constituted of the various expressions of human 'self-understanding'. The other point of doubt is that the school subjects lack the serious moral intent that characterizes the Buddhist 'practice'. This is the respect in which the contemporary theory of education has to learn from the Discourse. One possible direction would be to put the school subjects back to the life of teachers, those who have learned, are learning, and make it their career to teach, the school subjects. The moral intent of education must be the reflection of the moral characteristics of the life-style of teachers. The teacher in education is the exact counterpart of the Buddha, 'the Enlightened One', in the Discourse. Teachers, like Buddha, are following the same way, a few steps ahead perhaps, as the 'others' are following, the way that is determined by, and determines, the humanity.