Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Spritual Teachers

I would like to Honour my Spiritual Teachers Venerable Namgyel and Sri Devamitta Holland with this "reflective" article in appreciation of everything they do for Humanity and for me personally.

After a spiritual retreat, I become a little withdrawn and go very deep introspectively to search for, and process, all the possible things I’ve learned that can help me to become a better human being.
The end of this retreat has been no different and one of the many focal points of my learning has been to come to a deep appreciation for my spiritual teachers who have guided me along my journey’s path.

The question floating around in my mind, over the last day or so, has been: “Do we really, and truly, appreciate our spiritual teachers and everything they have been through in order to be in the position they are in to teach us?”

We are all teachers to one another and, every day, we are in this perpetual cycle of learning and teaching - but are we fully aware of it? Or does each lesson pass us by without us giving it the appropriate amount of attention?

Everything we say and do is the product of a lesson we have learned from someone at some particular moment in time - and, although we may not realise it, at the time, everything we say and do also serves as a lesson for someone else.

However, it is my humble opinion that Spiritual Teachers (especially travelling ones) are so very precious, and genuine ones may be a little rarer to find in this day and age when everyone can become a self proclaimed "spiritual guru".

Some Spiritual Teachers travel long distances; enduring the hardships of airports and sleeping in a different bed every week in a different country. And, whoever has travelled a lot knows how difficult airports can be with their policy of being there 2 hours before, the stress of security checks, queues, extortionate prices for food and let’s not mention the need to get up at absurd times of the morning, perhaps with little to no sleep, in order not to miss their flight.

They spend so much of their precious time, and their life, on a plane and suffering chaotic travel conditions for our sake.

I wonder if we fully appreciate how much constant flying, and crossing multiple time zones, in a pressurised cabin, affects the body and, ultimately, health itself.

I, also, wonder if we fully appreciate how tired a teacher must feel when he/she spends his/her day giving so much of himself/herself - sharing precious wisdom, answering all our questions and giving each and every one of us enough attention.

During each retreat/teachings, a teacher may have 30, different, people to respond to. It must be very taxing mentally and physically. That’s not to mention how many emails a teacher has to answer nowadays of other students far far away from the retreat in course.

I think we, sometimes, fail to remember that a Spiritual teacher is still a human being, like us - made of flesh and blood. The only difference between us is that they have optimised their full spiritual potential whereas we haven’t even started to scratch the surface. 

We take so much from them, and, perhaps a little selfishly, expect them to just keep giving and giving and giving but I ask myself how much we, actually, give them back and when I say give back, I mean by looking after them, and their well-being, so that they may always have their batteries fully charged, be in good health, and be able to benefit even more people on their journey’s path that takes them around the world. 

As a event organiser, and a devoted student, I reach out to all retreat organisers around the world to truly value the precious teacher you are hosting. It’s imperative to let our teachers rest appropriately. We all benefit from a refreshed mind in a relaxed body.

It costs nothing to let our teacher rest a day, before any retreat, after a long trip, and it costs nothing to let them rest a day or two after the teachings so they may fully recover.

My wish is that, as retreat organisers, we may show the same compassion, love, patience and kindness to our Spiritual Teachers as they show us. After all, are love, patience, kindness and compassion not the very things our Teachers are trying to teach us?

What use is learning if we can’t put what we learn into practice with the very people that show us the way?

Wherever you are, whoever you are, as a fellow student, I ask you ... please ... love, take care of, and appreciate all teachers in this world because, if they are no longer able to teach, through ill health, who will we all turn to?

All of our "Life" Teachers give us wings (some more than others and some literally) and they also give us the ability to consistently transform/improve ourselves. It's up to us to choose whether to fly or not and what greater Honour is there, for our Teacher, than to see us fly the way they taught us to!
Have a beautiful day one and all.

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