Why not he, for example in English, asks him to write an essay on anything he likes, instead of setting a topic. With such thoughts as these, he will write his examinations and once they are over the haves a sigh of relief, poor man, he does not for a moment, realize, that they will confront him again and again, even long after he packs his books and leaves his school. Why should examinations evoke so much fear and construction? It is because they mark the fate of the examinee and put an indelible seal on it. What a candidate has taken learns in months and years is tested in a couple of hours and grades are offered. Luckily they may turn out to be a passport to his success in life or may turn out to be a passport to his success in life or may seal his future once for all: for success in school or university examinations’ opens the doors of success in life.
So, when they become such deciding factors, it is but natural that they strike so much awe and terror in the minds of the student community. But, is the success in examination the real test of one’s knowledge and abilities? Nobody can utter an emphatic ‘yes’, but yet the world goes by this yard stick. Can a horse win the race, they say, if it fails to get over the first hurdle? But we cannot also say all the horses that pass this test will surely win the race. Nor can we say that, he who fails in his school examinations will be ultimate failure in life. As a matter of fact as in the game of dice, there is an element of uncertainty in the outcome of examinations too. It is more or less kinds of gambling; with the short span of time available and the vast amount of material to be studied, it becomes a ‘selective study’.
It is not possible to master all that is prescribe or to remember all that is studied. So in this ultimate process of selection and rejection, lies in the hand of fate. If what you have selected is in the domain of testing, you win the race otherwise you lose; and you must wear the badge forever. In this world which judge’s people by the apparel they wear, the ‘grade certificates’ play a very important role. The top boy puts a rose in his button and parades.
The world does not realize that these certificates, like the apparel one wears, do not really represent the intrinsic worth of the individual. There is a knack that one should learn to pass in the examinations. Equipped with it, even the second rate people can obtain first class certificates. There are other means that can lead even the third class people to the front rows. But these tactics under no circumstances can perform the alchemy; the baser metal may glitter like gold; but it cannot transform itself into gold. But yet, the emotion may pass for the real. Whether a diamond is on the crown of a prince or in the dust bin, it is still a diamond.
The fault is in the people who have not noticed its worth. Einstein was just ‘ordinary’ when he war at school. It was the fault of his teachers who could not see beyond and estimate his real intelligence.
And that is one of the reasons of the mystery that surrounds the people who seem unpromising during their scholastic career but shoot up into prominence in their later life. Their real interest lies elsewhere and they do not take the examinations seriously in right earnestness. When it was spring, the grass hopper, filled with the joy of the season, danced and song in utter ecstasy while the ant conscious of its own limitations laboured hard to save a few grains of food. When the winter came, it had no worry no doubt. But would it be able to sing and dance when spring comes again! Autumn or winter, the lot of the ant is to labour and struggle to survive. What examinations did Tagore, Kalidas and Shakespeare take? They gang all their life and filled the world with the joy of their song.
All of us are not Tagores and Shakespeares; common folk such as we are, must accept the examinations as an inevitable feature and get ready to face them. We cannot afford to ‘sing’ all through the summer like the grasshopper. Lime the tiny ant, we must strive and struggle. As long as these examinations remain the accepted mode of transport to material success, we cannot but take them.
If we miss the bus, forever we shall regret. As a matter of fact “examinations” can alone filter the unwanted stuff; they may not unequivocally demarcate and offer correct grades but still there is no other way. In the expanding world, there must be a way, however crude it may be, to arrest and arrange, otherwise only chaos will result in. Those that are fore sighted those that can work hard and untiringly and those that are endowed with a quick mind, aggressive nature and survival tactics are the luckier ones. Those that are not, make another and yet another attempt to knock the wall. Their hands may get bruised, still they cannot hope to pause and rest. But they too have their reward.
Success often makes people vain and light headed while failures make them hard, enduring and even minded. If success is the outcome of chances. They alone can afford to fail.