Thursday, April 10, 2014

Teachable Moments

I think every experience in life is a teachable moment.  These moments are not only an opportunity for me to teach others but also an opportunity for life to teach me.  In the work environment we often use the term “coachable” moment.  I don’t really like this term because it implies to me that the events of a particular moment always need to be corrected.  Some experiences are what they are, and while some mistakes may need to be corrected, mistakes are not the only soil from which a learning opportunity sprouts.  I also believe what a former teacher of mine, Richard Rohr, once said, “The moment is as perfect as it can be”.  All of life is a never ending learning experience.  It doesn’t matter how old you are or how many degrees you hold, life will continue to teach you.  Sometimes I think I know everything I need to know but life keeps enlightening me with even more knowledge and wisdom.  As I’ve said before, in recent years my granddaughter has been my teacher.  Like most children, she is a natural Zen Master.  When I am with her I try to see life through her eyes and I try to let my inner child appear.  Sometimes, when I let go, I can be a nine year old child.  When this happens I can see life with a renewed freshness and not through the eyes of a tired, slightly jaded, sixty three year old.  Today, for example, I am not feeling it.  It’s Thursday and that is the day of the week when I start running out of gas.  I hate to feel this way.  My fatigue is part physical, part emotional, and part spiritual.  The teaching of the moment is that I need some personal renewal.  I need to regain my excitement about being alive.  I need to fill up the gas tank of my soul with some high octane gas.  Sometime when you are my age and you’ve been doing everything in your life for a very long time, it hard to find a gas station that gives you the energy that you need.  The good news for me at this moment is that my Zen teacher will be spending the weekend at my house.  She never runs out of gas.  If I can’t keep up, she will drag me along.  She’s exhausting and energizing at the same time.  I wonder what she will teach me this weekend?     

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