Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The Eternal Dance of the Student and Teacher

Shortly, those who have school age children will be getting ready to send them off to school again. And there may have been a time when we were very young that we thought that once we graduated school that the entire business of student and teacher would be over forever. 

Later on, we realized that we are always learning, whether it is new skills for a particular job, playing a musical instrument, a sport, a game, a hobby, or life skills for improving our relationships and exploring developments that would enrich us spiritually, philosophically or physically.

And in time, we found ourselves being the ones that others came to for advice, and perhaps we were surprised by who asked us and why. 

And that may lead us into a one on one mentor relationship or a group class, a formal or informal course of studies.

You see, once we have taken care of finding work and a home, our attention often wanders into areas that will enrich our lives. As we get older, we give more thought to subjects like mortality, parallel dimensions of life and our legacies. As we do, we realize that legacies can be much more than the physical things we leave behind. Legacies are also about what we have taught and shared and about how well those we have taught and shared with have evolved. 

The realization that we are always both student and teacher upends the notion that we only learn for a while and then we are done. Awakenings may have come to us at a time of career change, a relationship beginning or ending, facing a serious health challenge or the death of someone close to us. 

When we look closely at what we do, if we pursue excellence, we are always asking how we can do what we do better. It is at these moments when new truths reveal themselves. When we are preparing to teach someone else and it suddenly occurs to us how we can present the subject better. Or when we are doing something we have done for quite a while and suddenly we discover another way to practice it. 

We are never really done learning or teaching. Some times we are one, some times we are the other. We are both at the same time and it is rewarding and deeply satisfying to know this as we act on it.

The subjects may change, but in essence, they are always the same. We are always exploring and discovering ways to improve the quality of our lives and this always affects those connected to us. 

Our circles of connection are more extensive than we often realize, encompassing not only lovers, but close friends, relatives, co-workers, neighbors and casual acquaintances. And then if we have published anything on line, who knows who saw it? 

If we are always conscious of our own evolution, then there is no end to the new beginnings and fresh starts waiting to be unveiled, experiences for us to step into.

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