Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing
there is a field. I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase each other
doesn’t make any sense.
From Essential Rumi
Translated by Coleman Barks
Contemplative practice approaches life’s big and little questions with a spirit of engaged curiosity: Who am I? What’s here? What’s happening now? What does it mean?
When we look, listen, and feel with this fullest attention—through methods like stillness and solitude, music and movement, creativity and connection—we get closer to the mystery that lives in places where traditional learning forgets to search.
Mindfulness, for example, brings us fully into an embodied, resilient relationship to the present moment. We gain greater focus, spaciousness, and empathy.
Deep listening and other ritual forms create the safety needed for more authentic conversation. We learn to trust each other and, from there, to connect in braver ways.
Inquiries for leaders:
- How can I sharpen my focus on what matters most?
- How can I approach difficult conversations so all parties leave feeling heard and respected?
- How do I take better care of myself—and help my people do the same for themselves?
Inquiries for educators:
- What tools give me access to more intuitive insights?
- How can I help my students manage their own emotions so they can stand up for themselves without turning to violence or self-medication?
- How can I deepen my own experience as a teacher?
Inquiries for individuals:
- What will help me enjoy this moment more—rather than getting caught in regrets from the past or worries about the future?
- How can I find more meaning and purpose in my life?
- How do I step out of this crazy rush I’m always in?
Contemplative Practice TED WORDS blog posts: