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Introducing social-emotional ethical learning in India by his holiness the Dalai Lama and Emory University

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International psychologist and science reporter for The New York Times, Daniel Goleman has been credited with giving preeminence to the phenomenon of Emotional Intelligence, also known as EQ, through his book with the same title.

He is now a key contributor to the concept of Social Emotional Ethical (SEE) Learning for school students, which is being introduced in India by Atlanta, USA-based Emory University and His Holiness the Dalai Lama. SEE Learning facilitation will be offered to Indian schools free of cost, as a complement to the existing curricula in order to encourage holistic learning. Max Group's CSR arm - Max India Foundation has taken the onus of promoting SEE Learning in India and training the teachers.

SEE, which has been curated by Emory University's Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics, is a K-12 program that will provide educators with the tools they need to foster the development of emotional, social, and ethical intelligence for students and themselves. The objective is to equip students with skills like attention training, compassion and ethical discernment, systems thinking, and resilience and trauma-informed practice.

This will be achieved through orientation and supported facilitation sessions and interactions between lead scientists, contributors of SEE Learning and educators as well as through a curriculum that comprises of easy-to-implement lessons, a comprehensive framework and resources for educator preparation and development.

With the world's largest cohort of young people and nearly 10% of its population under the age of five, India has a critical need for a framework that focuses on overall development. In the words of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the current system imparts materialistic values, including external science but not inner science. Efforts must be made to educate human beings on the importance of warm-heartedness and compassion. SEE Learning India's goal is to empower students to engage ethically, to provide educators with the tools to support student well-being, and most importantly, to promote human values and ethics, which are common across the entire human community of 7 billion people.

SEE Learning has been developed with the help of veterans in developmental psychology, education, and neuroscience, as well as with the guidance of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who has always been an advocate of educating both the heart and mind and preaches a universal, non-sectarian approach to ensure ethical development of children. It will be executed in India by the Max India Foundation (MIF), which represents the social responsibility efforts of the Max Group. MIF has recently shifted its core focus to the field of after making significant strides for more than 10 years in healthcare for the underprivileged. The Piramal Foundation will also be directly involved in the implementation of the program as has always occupied center stage for it.

Tara Singh Vachani, Managing Trustee, Max India Foundation, said, "After the success received in the healthcare industry, Max India Foundation is delighted to now focus on education. SEE Learning is an initiative grounded in the idea that education can and indeed should be expanded to foster the values and competencies that lead to greater happiness for both individuals and the society at large. Hence, we have introduced to India the most structured, evidence-based and comprehensive program in this area. We hope to bring a change for a better future."

Daniel Goleman, an internationally known psychologist, said, "The me-first ethic that has become so dominant in economics and society today [that it] will likely make disasters worse. For the human species to survive, we will need an ethic of compassion, and emotional intelligence skills like resilience, empathy, teamwork, and collaboration, more than ever. My hope is that programs like SEE Learning will be adopted far and wide, and will help more and more students throughout their lives, as they grow up and grapple with challenges not seen before in human history."

Max India Foundation

Launched in 2008, Max India Foundation (MIF) represents the Max Group's social responsibility efforts. The Foundation's work has been focussed on healthcare for the underprivileged and has benefitted more than 34 lakh people in over 800 locations since its inception. Its focus now is to drive the creation of opportunities by empowering children with education and sustainable livelihood skills.

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, November 19 2019. 17:13 IST
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