In Chapter 4-6 of Contemplative Practices in Higher Education, Barzebat and Bush describe practices that teachers can include in teaching such mindfulness, lectio divina, and journal writing. Before they begin the descriptions, however, they emphasie the importance of a practice of one’s own before even beginning. This is probably the most important point, but if you’re new to this style of teaching, it may be the first obstacle that leads to a question: what if you don’t have a practice?
For some of us, we may have been in long established tradition of yoga or meditation, the ones that are usually considered “contemplative,” but Barzebat and Bush also include the tree of contemplative practices (p.10), and if we look at that description, we might find that we (to our surprise) have a practice such as writing or music or social justice work. Then, even after looking at this list, we may still think: I don’t have a practice. Can I even do this?
Before we meet on Friday, spend a little time in reflection: do you have a “practice”? If not, what would you like to learn to practice? Has anything ever drawn you? Or, are you doing something already that could be a practice that isn’t on the tree, such as crafting (knitting, crochet, etc) or running?
What would you call your practice?