Headmaster's Weekly Comment: 12/11/12 - image  on https://www.johncolet.nsw.edu.au

Headmaster’s Weekly Comment: 12/11/12

There is a lovely but curious story which Shantananda Saraswati tells several times:
A holy man was offered a room in a house where he could devote himself to prayer and meditation and study.  The four year old son of the householder used to go in quietly and sit with the saintly man, and without any instruction, used to copy him.  The boy learned stillness and meditation and grew up to become a Mahatma a wise man.

To me this story has many layers of meaning but one of the most humbling, for a teacher, is that who we are has more influence on the child’s character than what we say or do.  Although what we say and do is important, they are only effective if they line up with who we are.

I have occasionally walked into a lively classroom, and have found myself insisting loudly and agitatedly that the children be quiet. If I am lucky I will wake up to the obvious disconnect between my state (agitated) and what I am demanding (quietude). 

I then usually apologise to the children, and ask them to be patient while I become still and quiet.  And then I ask them to join me.  Much more effective, and pleasant, for everyone.
Headmaster's Weekly Comment: 12/11/12 - image 2011-headmaster-photo-blogg on https://www.johncolet.nsw.edu.au