The following are excerpts from my book Private
Lessons: A Book oF Meditations for Teachers.
what we have, but what we enjoy constitutes our abundance.
My baby nephew loves dirt.
Whether its sand in a sandbox, soil in a garden or dust
on the sidewalk, he revels in the sensation of tiny
grains sifting through his fingers and exclaims at the
hills, peaks and swirls he can create with it. A walk
around the block takes an hour because he insists on
stopping every few steps to play with a pile of dirt.
Something as commonplace as dirt is an occasion for
joy for Robert. Because there is so much dirt around
(both outdoors and inside the house) he’s always happy.
that we would take joy in the extremely ordinary things
around us. We may never own a luxury plane - or even
a luxury car. We can’t count on being chosen Teacher
of the Year or writing a Pulitzer Prize winner. Teachers
can’t necessarily count on getting a cost of living
raise next year.
we can take pleasure in a good night’s sleep, a congenial
conversation among friends, a parking space near the
door, a short line at the store, a cold drink on a hot
day, the smell of a fresh box of crayons, the feel of
rain on the face - even in dirt.
lesson: The plain and ordinary is delightful.
man ought to desire that which is genuine instead of
that which is artificial.
The word “desire”, broken
down into its parts means “of” the “Father”, suggesting
that our deep wants have a divine origin. With this
supreme and compelling source animating the things we
want passionately, we are assured of achieving them.
So what is it that we
desire? If our focus is on cars, clothes, and cuties,
we may attain them, but still feel unfulfilled and unsatisfied.
would happen if you desired to be an inspiring teacher,
an effective parent, a compassionate human? Take your
desire to a deeper level.
lesson: I harness my desires for good.