One of the constants across academic subject areas is structure. In English, we have the five paragraph essay—introduction, body paragraphs, conclusion.  In math, there are algorithms, equations, and proofs.  In the social sciences, students learn of governments which are organized around various ideologies. In music, they have bass and treble clefs. In drama, there’s upstage and downstage.

You get the idea.

So now that we’re nearing the year anniversary of The Zen Teacher Project, and in anticipation of this fall’s publication of The Zen Teacher as an actual book, I thought it was time to give this funky little soapbox of mine just a bit more structure.

After some serious reflection–and more than a trip or two back to the drawing board—I realized I could structure my approach here into seven separate areas that we can explore in order to bring you a greater sense of peace and centeredness, both in and out of the classroom. 

The seven areas I’ll be discussing, in order of what I see as an organic and natural progression toward the Zen Teacher qualities we’re after (namely, focus, simplicity, tranquility), are as follows:

1.     Beginner’s Mind

2.     Mindfulness and Meditation

3.     Non-judgment and Acceptance

4.     Lovingkindness (including compassion, kindness, and gratitude)

5.     Intuition 

6.     The Three S’s:  Space, Stillness, and Silence

7.     Intentional Self-Care

It’s not so much that my blog posts will be radically different, but that I wanted to give you a container in which to hold the things we talk about–just think of it as your very own 2 liter bottle of Zen Cola. And in streamlining the structure and approach, I hope I’m also modeling the stuff I talk about like mindfulness, space, and simplification.

As a bonus, I have also included a category section in the sidebar of the blog that, while not exactly matching up to the seven areas mentioned above verbatim, does in fact encompass all of them.  I then went back and labeled each of my blog posts with the appropriate tag or tags, ensuring for you an easier perusal of a year’s worth of posts.

I’m hoping that the concepts I discuss here lead to nothing less than a total transformation for you in terms of your sense of peace and equanimity. To that end, I hope you enjoy the new approach and, as always, I am happy to receive your questions, comments, and feedback.

And now, let’s return to your regularly scheduled Zen. TZT