Every Teacher Needs A Teacher

If there is one thing I’ve learned, not just as I’ve aged but also during over a decade of graduate studies in computer science, ministry, and theology is that the more you learn, the more you realize there still is to learn.  The best teachers and coaches always seem to have teachers and coaches they continue to turn to.  I’ve had a few over the years .. some in the fitness realm, others for different facets of personal development.  I want to share one of my current mentors that I think should be better known in wider circles.

When I was an undergrad at Ripon College, I had a history professor (who I won’t embarrass here…) who was one of the most astounding lecturers I’ve ever seen.  He spoke seemingly without notes, engaged the class frequently with rich discussion and yet had the uncanny ability to bring his lecture to a perfect close just seconds before the bell would ring.  To this day, it still amazes me.

These days, my attention has turned toward the healing arts … meditation, contemplation, mindfulness, qigong, tai chi, yoga …etc … I’ve become a YouTube and Podcast fanatic as these are accessible to me while in the midst of a somewhat unreasonably busy existence .. but hey, never stop learning!  I have become a diehard listener to the teachings of Jack Kornfield.  Trained as a Buddhist monk, his deep insights into the human condition are astounding.  And lest you think that this practicing Roman Catholic is changing sides (I’m not, though I’m something on an Omnist … finding that no tradition has the sole truth but rather most traditions have a great deal to teach us – and sometimes each other), I continue to be fascinated by the depth and breadth of his sources during his teachings.  A took some note on one over the weekend and was really quite taken aback at how many references there were in a 60 minute session … he referenced:  (the central theme of the talk was “patience”)

Thomas Merton

Ram Dass


Martin Luther King

Nelson Mandela

Mother Theresa

The Tao Te Ching

The Dharma

Mahatma Gandhi

Ajahn Chah

His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

The Buddha

Deena Metzger

Ojibwe sayings

The Amish Community

Gary Snyder

Crowfoot Elders

John Muir

Teddy Roosevelt

Abraham Lincoln


….. not much missing there .. he frequently cites the Jewish and Christian scriptures, the teachings of Jesus Christ and the writings of one of my favorite authors, Annie Dillard.

He’s worth looking up …… he’s easy to find on YouTube, podcasts can be found on the Be Here Now network and he’s a featured teacher on the Heart Mind app.  Wonder about some of those names referenced?  Please comment!

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