Professor Anjum Paul leads seminar “The Promotion of Social Harmony through Schools”

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Faisalabad: July 9, 2012. (Adeel Fraz) Teachers’ Teams Pakistan organized national seminar on the theme “The Promotion of Social Harmony through Schools” from June 15-19 in four various places of Pakistan. Professor Anjum James Paul (Chairman of the Political Science Govt. Postgraduate College Samundri, Distt. Faisalabad) and Chairman of Pakistan Minorities’ Teachers Association (PMTA) was the resource person. There were total 189 direct beneficiaries including 78 ladies, 111 gents and members of the national team.
Mrs. Kausar Riaz, Mr. Riaz Shahid, Babu George, Ms. Shama, Mr. Kaleem John, Mr. John Victor, Ms. Uzma Amir, Mr. Patras Gill, Mr. John Victor, Mr. Adeel Fraz, Mr. Naeem Walter and Rev.Sr. Magdalline OP were among leading participants on seminars in different cities.
Objectives:
A: Global:
I. Deepening awareness of worldwide situation of evolution of human relationships.
II. Economic and cultural effects of Globalization on Pakistan.
III. Comparison of ancient and modern education systems and their output.
B. Specific:
I. Study the effects of violence, authoritative teaching and punishment on students and society.
II. Conscientization of teachers about cultural degradation and disharmony due to religious fundamentalism and violence in Pakistan.
III. Enhancing the value of non-violence and social harmony.
IV. Giving tips on teaching methodology, class room setup, conversation and behavior of teachers.
V. To study and practice Jesus Non-Violence Teaching in Gospels.
Reading Sources:
I. New Testament. II. among US. No 71
iii. Jesus’ non violence revolution by Rev. Fr. Herve Morissette CSC (translated by James Lal)
iv. The people of all faiths, inspiring teachings of Jesus Christ by Dr. Renu Rita Silvano
(Translated by Sr. Shakeela John OP)
v. Quid-e-azam’s speech on 11th august 1947 to the constituent assembly.
Studied Bible References:
Mathew 5:1-10 and 11:25-30 Luke 10: 25-37 and 16:19-31, Mark 7: 24-30. Exodus 20:1-17
Resource Person’s Input:
Professor Anjum James Paul has been teaching Political Science in various colleges for the last twenty years. He has full command and research over the history and socio political situation of the sub-continent and Pakistan with specificity. He has made study on curricula taught in schools, colleges and universities in Pakistan and highlighted words, events, stories, slogans which fire up social disintegration, turmoil, violate human rights and shut the doors of harmony, peace and human respect. He briefly discussed the history of the sub-continents. Attacks and ruling of foreign warriors, nature and struggle of local leaders for peace and more stressed on “Islamization” in Pakistan after 1973 which has begotten many upsets developing poverty, terrorism, inter-religious disharmony, suicide bombing, partial laws banning certain human rights, suppression of women and blasphemy act, a death threat heading religious minorities. Few points are given below.

After Pakistan came into being what Quid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah stated in his famous addresses on 11th August 1947, on 1st February 1948 to the Americans and to the First National Conference on education policy. All witness that Pakistan is going to be a democratic, moderate and liberal state giving equal rights to all citizens regardless of their caste, color and creed.
• Constitution of Pakistan 1973 Articles 20, 22 and 25 give and advocate on all social and religious rights and freedom.
• The Charter of UNO which is signed and accepted by Pakistan proclaimed equal human rights for all its member nations and judicial access and safe guards for all citizens without any distinction.
• (Article 1, 2, 18, 26(2)) and declarations of UNICEF and UNESCO on education and against child labor. Parameters of setting syllabus and printing books given by Federal Ministry of education states “Subject content must be none prejudicing and none debating”
On the other hand there are certain topics in the books taught in schools as Urdu and English literature, Islamic studies, history and civics which refuse the state policy and preach discrimination.
• Social prejudices and religious, even sectarian preaching by novices (teachers and students) are nourishing confusion, inferiority complex and disunity.
• Certain arrangements and practices in schools like seating, calling by language, color caste and anger fights.
Suggestion to Promote Harmony:
Social harmony develops and strengthens bringing peace and justice if tolerance, love, mutual respect, equal opportunities of fundamental human rights regarding food, shelter, education, health, religion, expression are available and practiced freely without any fear or ban. Therefore it is need of the hour to bring forth:
1. Reforms in curricula to grant equal rights, respect and feeling of security to all social entities.
2. There must be ban on speech and writing against other societies, cultures and religions.
3. Teachers must practice human rights without teasing and calling students by castes, colors etc.
4. Create love through dialogue and sharing your gifts to which you have been neglecting.
5. Study other religions and social values to bring realities ahead. It will foster harmony.
6. Talk to low and poor class students and their parents affectionately and strengthen their concern for education.
7. Encourage mothers to send their sons and daughters to schools
8. Support all programs and movements favoring human freedom at educational and social levels.
Group Discussions:
Q.1. Problems faced by teachers being Christian in schools.
Ans: Discussion on religious matter. Invitation to become Muslims, discouragement, making students against Christian teachers, as heads face opposition of subordinates. No freedom of expression. Social discrimination during parties and extracurricular activities.
Q.2. Solutions and Suggestions of the problems faced by teachers being Christian in schools.
• Be tolerant and strong in faith.
• Lead a prayerful life,
• Witness Christ’s Humanity.
• Learn Islamic studies and Arabic.
• Be delegate at conversation
• Do not be anguished.
• Be more punctual, skilled and loving teacher.
• Be active members of Teachers’ Teams
• Serve for God, not for reward.
• Feel great in Christ, not inferiority complex.
• Congratulate on Eids (Feasts) birthday etc.
• Visit families and friends and show sympathy at deaths, disasters.
• Put posters, charts and day messages giving impression of love, harmony.
Q.3. Role of teachers in the promotion of social harmony.
Ans;
• Encourage students to work in groups and teams without discriminations.
• Ask students their suggestions about tests, matches, poster competitions, parties, picnic, homework, classroom decoration. Let all give suggestion orderly and guide them.
• Ca;; everybody by real name
• During teaching do not stress on debatable topics or themes.
• Go well prepared to teach. Get your students’ attraction
• Conduct co-curricular activities (in and out door) and advice everyone to participate
• Always welcome and listen to the parents views.
• Ignore individual mistakes and shortcomings of your students. Advice them to make better
• Welcome criticism and bring possible changes.
Fourth Day Special (19th June 2012)
It was made special at Caroline House by gathering university students, non teaching elders, religious sisters in schools, none catholic evangelists, working ladies and leaders of Teachers’ Teams around.
All shared their experiences and views, they had during their studies, work, and business, teaching and preaching. It was a blend of many colors. Mr. Naveed Walter coordinated and geared all that.
During that session we got much more information about our society suffering from disharmony
i. We discussed politics, economy, and culture all failing and falling. The major causes are lack of trust and excess of selfishness.
ii. We observed the Christians hate other Christian as well as Muslims.
iii. We saw extremism among Christian teacher and preachers as well.
Rev. Sr. Magdalline yosaf OP summed up and gave many suggestions that the teachers have to change the feelings, views and habits of their students by following the ways our Jesus Christ has shown.
Every day during the last session Mr. Adeel Fraz conducted the sale of key chains, financial principles of the Bible (Brochure) and read Asian Coordinators message.
Mr. Saleem john gave introduction of the book “Make Disciples” originally in English translated by James Lal and printed by LOG ministry and distributed free of cost.
Mr. James Lal national coordinator thanked all participants, organizers, supporters and benefactors.

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