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Jai Guru, Thanks Teacher
May 10, 2006

You know what’s weird and either totally random or a divine coincidence? Of all the email I get from Blog readers who reveal things about themselves like what they do for work – I get a lot of teachers who read me.

I’m currently talking with 3 different teachers and I know there have been more. Music, Science, and English teachers. What's cool is that those were my top 3 favorite subjects in school. It blows me away to have English Professors with PhD’s email to say they admire my writing skills. How is that possible? I have so much admiration for teachers that I am humbled. I find their profession an incredibly noble one, at every level from kindergarten to university.

I’ve been thinking lately I could have gone into teaching myself. I would have loved the summers off. But I was not the best student. That is to say, I got all A's when I felt like it. See, I love learning but it’s hard for me to learn in an institutional setting. I need to absorb it in my own way, in my own time the way it sinks in. I don’t think I’d have the patience to teach others because I’m too busy trying to learn things myself. I guess I am selfish and cautious with whom I choose to share it.

But I like the concept of teaching and the idea that I could make a difference in someone’s life. I think I could teach kids to see things in a different way, to look at life and challenge it and themselves, to question things. Too many people are insanely book smart but have myopic perspectives on life, not enough angles. I just don’t think I could teach based on someone else’s curriculum. I would totally be the modern day female version of Robin Williams character in Dead Poets society. Oh Captain My Captain. I would get fired for instructing students to tear pages out of their text books and stand on their chairs in protest. I'd have them marching down the halls singing, “We don’t need no thought control”.

To me, learning is about stepping outside of your normal way of thinking to consider something new, some new detail. A thing is a thing but it’s never just a thing. I might have fit right in at Berkeley though…

My boss has had to direct me to stop questioning and analyzing on several occasions. He’s actually stopped me mid sentence to say, “Stop challenging me!” I laugh because I don’t even realize I’m doing it. He calls me the “But Girl”. There is a paper hanging in my office hand written by him that says, “You will not use the word but in your vocabulary.” I love that he calls me out on my shit, I respect that. And then we sit down and explain both sides and come to an agreement and move on.

It’s always best when someone is challenging you back….

Like I explained to him, if someone is challenging you it means they care, it means they respect your opinion and want you to teach them something or maybe they have something to contribute to your life. It's important to me to have that open dialogue. You don’t necessarily have to agree with it but at least they give a shit and you learn to see it in a different way.

My ex never saw this quality of mine as an asset; he saw it as something he had to “deal with”. Something else he had to communicate to me and reveal about himself. I’m not saying it to slam the guy, it’s just a fact. He didn’t want me to question anything. From his angle, there was nothing to question. Because he was always right.

I guess if you are one of those myopic thinkers --- questioning and a desire to learn and absorb information can be misinterpreted as being argumentative, but it’s not. It’s called being engaged in a subject. I’m just naturally curious and need to see things at all sides. I need to know the who, what, when, why, and how of a thing. Then and only then can I begin to form educated opinions about the thing.

It is an asset but the real challenge for me is learning to contain it and learning that it’s not always possible to have all the answers. The point is I’m still learning…sometimes I learn out loud through my blog. I Iearn from the comments and the emails and keyword searches and feedback.

The Professor of English who found me by way of googling the ancient Sanskrit translation writes:

“Your patience in seeking houses and a partner is admirable; it appears you're looking for the important qualities in both that will keep you happy and contented beyond the purchase date. Blessings in your quest...

Would you want to have to get a man drunk every time you desired to hear his true feelings for you? Didn't think so...

Seers and mystics don't lie. It's up to us to hear their truth in our truthfulness to ourselves...”

Jai Guru Deva Om

Posted by Lori on May 10, 2006 12:22 AM permalink Comments (1)



Jana commented May 10, 2006 6:12 PM


Thank you for the kind words. Unfortunately, you hit it right on when you talk about teaching the curriculum. Over the last 5 years, I have seen so many wonderful teachers not reach their potential (which means neither do their students) because they are so limited, and are all but told to teach the test. I understand the need for a curriculum, standards, and even some standardized testing. It is just sad that our entire profession revolves around standardized tests. There are so many different ways of learning; and I question anyone that believes all children are capable of learning at the same level (No Child Left Behind). I taught at an inner city school for several years. These kids come from circumstances that most people cannot even imagine (I know I couldn't have); I challenge anyone that says these kids are not learning just because they do not have the same test scores as students that come from middle to upper class families. So...it only makes sense to take more funds away from the poorest of the poor schools! Thanks for allowing me to vent a little bit! Even with all of the frustrating things, I couldn't imagine doing any other job.

By the way, I found you looking at pug stuff!


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