…he asked me, that you don’t find the kinds of teacher you espouse, for which you are looking?” I looked up at him; quizzically, I thought.
Beyond disappointment, I thought there were some around, of those who taught well and inspired. By now, I understood and understand that teaching is too difficult for very long, except for the strongest to bear. Where, then, to look, to search? How much of my own time to devote to these explorations in the realities of every day? How to deal with the experiences of isolation which the teacher-I-am has to endure?
I found them many of those for whom I was searching in the texts and ideas of all of time: in the books, in the writings, in the history of how we got here. Augustine trained teachers and created the church which has endured for almost two millennia; and I have him, his thoughts and writings, in my house and in my office, and in my mind, and in my being. He is very present in my thoughts, so alive that I can talk and walk with him. And Plato, who thought and talked sitting down, and his student, Aristotle, who talked and thought while walking around; I have them, as well. Confucius, Aesop, the ancients. The seers and oracles and shamans of other cultures, they, too, are now available; at least in books, and in my active thoughts.
And the moderns who have shaped our thinking…? Maybe it is that I have already swallowed whatever the tears of my disappointments, thinking that tears should not be shed upon the ground of life. I wish to meet all the teachers of the world who live still, now that I can attempt to grapple with their concepts and histories, now that I am thoughtful and full of sufficient knowledge. Disappointed?
Disappointment: a concept that middle age cannot sustain and reach its own beyond.