What is the ‘spiritual preparation of the teacher’? I’m not talking about how others would define it, but what does it mean for you in practice? For me, it’s exactly what we want for the child….an endless unfolding of your true nature and personality.
A friend of mine told me today that a Montessori school never gets “there”, but is in a constant process of growth and development. I believe, this must also apply to the teachers as well. In our tradition of Cosmic Education we see that we are all connected, a small, but integral part of the big picture. I’m convinced that the principles that govern the universe also apply to a Montessori school and indeed its teachers and student. The more we are in touch with the whole, the vaster our perspectives become and the clearer our understanding of the part we play within that whole. To be a guide (teacher) implies that we know our way around. To guide a little human into humanity means we ourselves must be in touch with our own humanity and our place in the school, community, culture and the cosmos. Grasping our connections, our relationships to the people and things we come in contact with, we do our best to aid the growth and unfolding of our life and of those around us. We become genuine in our meetings. We cultivate integrity. We become authors of ourselves, authorities on being ourselves!
When we learn to accept our limitations and use our strengths in conjunction with our co-workers, the school itself becomes a garden for humanity. When we can truly be ourselves, it is then we model it for the children. We are then true guides to personal development and freedom. We become a light to show the way.
Be a light unto the world, it has been said. Most often we look to others to be that light, but know that it is within you and always has been. When Buddha was dying, his disciples worried who would show them the way and he told them to be a light unto themselves! Shine on, my fellow Montessorians, Shine on!
Robert Fischbeck is a Montessori practitioner from Norway. He is married and has 2 children. Rob has a diverse interest and has worked in wide variety of jobs, from a sewer worker to fish cleaner; from kitchens to preschools. He studied Montessori with Waterpark in Oslo and has been working at Bambini Montessoribarnehage in Hamar, Norway since 2004.