A Critical Reflection of Martins Buber’s Philosophy of Education and its Relevance in the New-State
Keywords:Buber’s Philosophy of Education, Holistic Encounter, I and Thou, Nigerian Educational System
The aim of this essay is to examine the relevance of I and Thou through the lens of Martins Buber’s philosophy of education. The fundamental problem is that the educational system in the new-states like Nigeria is in need of re-orientation. Owing to this, policy formulators and educational practitioners need to see education in relational terms with regards to its relevance, implementation and its methodology together with the ends which education wishes to serve to as a facilitator of societal development. The method of critical analysis is useful to facilitate the re-orientation exercise. Findings show that Buber’s philosophy of education as embedded in the idea of I and Thou encourages interaction among individuals which are integral to the flourishing of positive relationship between the educational system and the community. Consequently, the paper attempts to unveil how this value position could impact positively on the Nigerian educational system in a bid to avert its decline. Buber’s I-Thou (You) relationship opens avenue for encounter in which people could engage with each other fully through dialogue. The education is based on authentic relations between teachers and learners where knowledge that is not imposed by the teacher is the basis of true pedagogy. In Buber’s idea of “I and Thou (You)”, personal relation should tend beyond individualism and collectivism for the future generations. The knowledge of self should be first and foremost: learners must be taught to explore their two autonomous instincts: the originator and the communion. Buber explains that the goal of the learner is to turn objective knowledge into active knowledge which helps in self actualization in the relational world.
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