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Differences : Then and Now - Prabin Subedi   Category: General


Although I was good in studies and did well in school, I felt I was not getting a proper education. The Nepalese education system is very structured and focuses on rote memorization.

Growing up having aim of being good son, I had no idea that one day I would end up as a law student with responsibility of being good person. My greatest concern when I was a child was to perform well in school and not disappoint my parents. Among my immediate relatives, my dad was the only one with a college degree. Nepalese culture at that time did not regard education as a priority. In fact, it was regarded as a distraction from a son learning his father's trade and a daughter learning the family customs from her mother so that someday she could start her own family. Despite the cultural bias against education, my parents were determined to give a good education to all of their children.

Although I was good in studies and did well in school, I felt I was not getting a proper education. The Nepalese education system is very structured and focuses on rote memorization. To receive full credit for any question asked in the exams, the answer needs to be the exact same answer that a teacher dictated in the class. Whenever we went over a lesson, a lesson, for example on World War II, I wanted to know more about the subject. When I asked further questions to the teacher, she immediately replied that it is not covered in the syllabus and I am not required to know. However, this did not discourage me from learning.

Social Study was not subject of priority for me. I never gave minute thought about making career in social sciences. I am very much surprised that without having any inclination towards social science in school and passing my higher secondary education in science I ended up pursuing law degree. However, this does not surprise my mom at all. Whenever I meet with her, she reminds me of different things that I did in early childhood. My father being of legal profession, I was much interested in legal gossips. When I was a child I had great desire to know about legal practices and provision. "What will be punishment if parents beat up their son?" This was the most funny question that I asked my father when I was about to get thrashing from him. Whenever father used to go toward bench, I used to follow him as if I was his assistant and was doing research for him. I was curious about the fact of the case and what will be punishment. Being influenced by television programs, I was so excited with the issues. But I could not understand all issues. After finishing all cases when father used to come back home, he had over time duty to brief me the case, which in fact was really tough for me to understand. Next day morning when court was not in session, I was the one to run and get into seat of judge. I still remember, the judge's chair was revolving chair and I was there. I made my brother as accused and started the proceedings.

Every time my father used to bring Nepal Law Review (Journal of Cases decided by Supreme Court) and Volumes of Law, being over smart I used to study it. Mostly I was not able to understand single word and end up watching black letters. As I tried to study more and more, asking with father I got to know many things about cases.

When I say to my mom that I need to have personal relation, she says that I am used to with that. She is saying so because from early childhood I was interested in talking with unknown people and be in contact with them. My mom never had any higher education and has never left South Asia. However, now when she looks me going through the same journals, she says that I am doing the same thing that I was doing as a child: turning the same journals, nodding my head make her feel that I was getting something. Every time when I used to look and touch my father's document which would destroy his arrangement of papers, I was reprimanded for being careless. In junior classes, when I used to speak more in any legal issues, I used to be discouraged saying "it's not under syllabus". But, why does knowledge has limitation in Nepal? But these things never discouraged me. May be I will end up as a lawyer because of this silent encouragement from my parents to satisfy my thirst. It was nothing that pushed me studying law, but was the profession itself. Although I don’t remember the date, but, I feel that day was the most important day when I decided pursuing law degree. I now realized, in my childhood I was not interested as my brother in opening the watches and looking its mechanism. I was neither interested knowing about the disease nor having passion of being doctor like my sister had. Now I realize, I had passion of subject law, so I was eager to study the things although I could not understand them. I now laugh at myself. I tried to know the things that I can’t understand now. I have now concluded that, it’s important to know what your interest is before deciding what you want to do.

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