What is Contemplative Education
Several times over the past few months, I have had various inquiries into just what Contemplative Education meant. It is actually much easier to understand than most people think.
Contemplative Education is the art of teaching mindfully. It means being aware fully of your class, each child, the content of what you are teaching and its relationship to the world around you. It is looking at any subject through the lens of mindfulness or contemplation. It doesn't mean that you need to sit on a cushion and chant. While this is a contemplative practice, it is not the only contemplative practice offered.
At the Center for the Contemplative Mind in Society, they have a wonderful graphic that explains the fact that contemplation has many forms. ( Click this link to view.
Living life fully aware and mindful can be elusive. So much in our society works to crowd our minds with needless trivia. We are deluged with sights, sounds, smells, and tastes day after day. Finding a peace-filled center can become a great challenge.
Think for a moment, however, what it would be like to teach or be taught in an atmosphere that allowed for each individual to find their "center". This is what Contemplative Education is all about. When we learn/teach from our center, we connect to the subject at hand on multiple levels. We can critically examine not just the one dimensional facts listed in books, but re-conceptualize what is there to work within our own lives.
Teaching contemplatively is a gift to our students, ourselves and the world.