Friday, 28 May 2010

A Message to Me Sent by My Supervisor

Dear Ven. Janaka,
May I say in return what a pleasure it was reading your material. Both Andrew and I thought yours was particularly interesting. Even though the translations required detailed marking, which is hard when time is short and there are so many papers from larger courses to mark, marking these gave me the greatest pleasure.
I am copying Andrew in because he in fact gave the most detailed consideration to the texts.

I would like to ask you more about the dalhi-kamma, which seems - from what you have written - to be used differently in the Burmese-derived traditions of Sri Lanka, and other forms of strengthening the ordination. Perhaps I could return to the topic when we next meet and when - hopefully - I have finished all my marking! Recognising both your analytical ability and depth of knowledge also made me wonder about ways of extending this work - although perhaps you have other ideas of what you will do next - since you could clearly make very valuable contributions to Western understandings of Theravada Buddhism.

Your overall grade - subject to the external examiner's scrutiny - was a distinction at 71%. Your scholarship and erudition warranted a higher grade. It is the mode of expression that requires most improvement, as might be expected given that you are having to write about sophisticated matters in English. Congratulations.

With all good wishes, Kate


I am greatly encouraged by the positive comment of her response as if the cool mineral water in the creek flows into my burning head. An encouragement and mutual understanding between teacher and student plays a major role in the educational field. A student might be blamed or praised by the teacher who closely supervises or teaches him a relevant subject. 

Whether a blame or a praise, the teacher’s intention upon a student never leads to the wrong destination if a student willingly follows what the teacher instructs him. When being blamed, a student should regard himself as a sick person who is forced to take a strong bitter medicine which is very effective against any diseases he got suffered. Contrarily, when being praised, a student should behave himself as a healthy person who is served with a sweet honey which is incredibly nutritious.

Anyway, her comment makes me encouraged to continue my further study with her in long term, and I am confident of walking on my way to Ph. D.


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