I want to share this article because it highlights two very important points. It is not from my tradition, nor does it present the points in the same light as I would like to share them. However it does highlight these points in an important way. I have my own version of this article already brewing in my head and it was nice to see this fall under my noise, making the same points.
Often people come to me asking my to teach them this, or teach them that, or email questions about this or that. It is almost as if I am a mail-order course catalog or spiritual ATM machine. This is not the way I learned, so why should I teach in this matter? Would this be fair to the body of knowledge that is the Vidya? I learned from watching my teachers and absorbing what they were offering in the moment they offered it. It was not on demand training how, what and when I wanted. It was organic, it was natural. It produced a background and a context to support all those juicy tidbits that so many want to pluck from the tree, without watering and tending the roots. That is not to say that there were not well timed and placed question that inspired pieces to be shared, there were many. However these question come from having the background and the nature of the backlighting of these question inspired the knowledge to come forth. These same questions asked in a different moment would
not yield the same results. Most of what I learned was sitting around the Guru with my spiritual brothers and sisters having tea, not in workshops or structured teaching. You had to look at the group and know how your question would be answered depending on the audience and ask the right question at the right time. Often people say, my busy life doesn't allow for such and such; my respond is, then change your life. We all make sacrifices and choices and those sacrifices and choices are ours.
What I am trying to say is attend rituals, watch learn. Ask questions at the right times, when the audience feels correct, not following a preplanned agenda. Learn what is offered when it is offered. These are important skills for the spiritual student to have and pay great dividends.
The second point is don't learn with re teaching in your head as you are learning. You can tell when people are doing this by the questions that they ask. Teaching should be the natural progression of the experience you have had in working with the knowledge. It should be from your own experience, not the rehashing of your teachers. Work with things for a few years on your own before teaching so you have a background of experience to draw from.
In conclusion, watch and learn - then practice and internalize. Less ambition, more sadhana. My ParamaGuru (Guru's Guru say's) "Those who want to teach don't want to practice and those who want to practice don't want to teach." be in the second group, absorb and learn. Your teacher will tell you when it is time to teach.
"Most of what I learned was sitting around the Guru with my spiritual brothers and sisters having tea, not in workshops or structured teaching. " <-- this was my favorite line. Thanks for sharing.
I loved the way you put across what spirituality is all about. and what the student ,teacher relationship is all about in our sadhana. This is the way I have been seeing my sadhana ,for the last 32 yrs with my beloved Guruji an my awesome Gurugaru. Thk you Colin for sharing my thoughts too.