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Spiritual Discourse in the Academy

A Globalized Indigenous Perspective

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Njoki Nathani Wane, Francis Akena Adyanga and Ahmed Ali Ilmi

Spiritual Discourse in the Academy focuses on the value of spirituality as a subjugated knowledge from globalized contexts. The book's central tenet is that spirituality is the core of one's intellectual growth and that its inclusion in education acknowledges the sum total of who we are. It not only offers strategies for transformative education, but also embraces global diversity and inclusive education for the twenty-first century.
The book also provides a detailed examination of spirituality from a global context, acknowledges the detrimental legacies of colonialism on indigenous spirituality, knowledge systems, traditional justice systems, and on indigenous peoples. Spiritual Discourse in the Academy reaches out to educators, scholars, and students who are interested in the multiple roles of spirituality in schooling and society at large. It can be used for teaching courses in spirituality, education, religious studies, and cultural studies.
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Chapter Six: Swaraj, Spirituality, and Saraswati: Conceptualizing Post-Colonial Indian Secular-Cosmopolitanism, as Identity, and Education

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   CHAPTER SIX

Swaraj, Spirituality, and Saraswati: Conceptualizing Post-Colonial Indian Secular-Cosmopolitanism as Identity, and Education

NEVILLE G. PANTHAKI

INTRODUCTION

Educational reform leading to ownership of process and pedagogy, social transformation, and cultural renewal, was the main concern for Indigenous activists of sociocultural revival during the period of Indian political agitation in Colonial India under the British Raj. Education remained a principal concern for the Indian Independence Movement, as a strategy to mobilize the political consciousness of the people. Mohandas K. Gandhi helped transform the anti-colonial freedom struggle of the Indian National Congress into a democratic mass movement, through the inclusion of popular participation in civil disobedience against British authority. This rendering of a non-violent means to assert Indigenous rights against imperialism, through an evoking of Indigenous spiritual belief (that resistance to injustice is the moral duty of every righteous citizen), served to establish and reinforce a cultural identity of ‘Indian spirit’ between the people and the emerging construct of the independent nation. Gandhi “inbued the concept of swaraj with a broad meaning which included economic self-reliance and social justice. The freedom struggle thus sought to recover the nation for the people and to eliminate the imperial control” (Panikkar 2003, 107).

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