No matter what we do for a living, as a living being simply by being our self we are a teacher of life, demonstrating what we believe to be true about our self and our relationship to life. Every moment of every day, through our thoughts, words and actions, we demonstrate who we believe we are, who we believe others are, and what we believe has value in the world. When it comes to teaching these things, it isn’t a matter of “do as I say, not as I do” because it is not only what we say we believe, but what we do with what we believe, that teaches us and tells those around us what curriculum we have chosen.
What we think about when we are alone, and what we do with those thoughts throughout our day—e.g., what we say to others (and about others) and how we say it; how we react to what others say to us (and about us); and how we choose to treat all living things—are like symbols we draw on the chalkboard of our life that demonstrate what we are choosing to teach. Our choice is between being a Teacher of God or a teacher of fear.
We may believe there is a God, but we are not a Teacher of God unless we teach only Love, and demonstrate that we believe in Love (and nothing else) by what we do—through our sincere, heart-filled acts of forgiveness, compassion, honesty, kindness, patience, joy, generosity, and gentleness. We teach fear when we demonstrate, through verbal and nonverbal acts of judgment, blame, anger, agitation, dishonesty, and hurtfulness, that even though we may believe there’s a God, we also believe there’s something else in us and those around us.
We choose to be a Teacher of God when we embrace all others as One with us. We choose to be a teacher of fear by seeing the defense of our self-interests as being more important than those of another. If we want to be a Teacher of God, we may wonder how we can make the shift in our thinking so that we treat all others as we would like to be treated: First…do no harm.
In 500 B.C. in ancient Greece the “Hippocratic Oath” was and oath sworn to the gods that was understood to mean “given an existing problem, it may be better not to do something, or even to do nothing, than to risk causing more harm than good.” How often do we choose not to take a deep breath that will give us a moment to choose our response, but simply reaction from a defensive habit, instead. How often has our heated reaction made matters worse? Selfish self interests, unkind reactions, and unforgiving heart blocks the Light of Christ from shining in us and expressing thru us, and that Light (in this world) is all there is to us or real within us. The strength of God’s teachers lies in gentleness because they have come to know that their own fearful thoughts, and the fearful thoughts of others, don’t come from Love, and therefore have no Power and no Reality.
No matter what may have happened in the past, no matter what seems to be occurring now, we can make a deliberate choice not to defend our self by saying or doing something harmful towards another. Gentleness isn’t a pansy way of saying “It’s okay, walk all over me!” It is more like taking a heavy pair of bolt cutters and using the strength of our spirit to break the chain that links us to the intention to harm, and frees us from the heavy cords of resentment. If there is a battle going on for us, it is not occurring outside of us. It is the struggle within us between Love and forgiveness or fear and judgment.
Harmfulness is a choice against learning because everything that happens in our life—every person who comes along, every event that occurs, and every condition that presents itself has something to teach us. Harmfulness blocks Love’s lessons from our mind and heart. Even the desire to do harm is harmful whether we say the harmful words or do the harmful deeds because when we choose to hold unforgiving thoughts in our mind, we cannot experience the Love within us that gives us the curriculum to teach only Love.