Oprah Winfrey’s OWN channel has released an incredible documentary series called “Belief,” dedicated to exploring the power of religion as a force for good across the globe. A mini-series of shows dedicated to giving us a glimpse into the worlds of others that think and believe differently is a beautiful eye opener, giving us a small peak into the wonders of us all.
So many times we mis-understand the intentions and the path others take. Maybe thinking that due to the fact they are different from us, they must be bad or wrong, something that we should fear. This feeling of being scared or fearful of others is truly not necessary, for if we all had a little understanding of each others beliefs, might we have a modicum of peace within us as we consider just how alike we truly are.
Our worldly understandings and those things we have not grown up with add to the fabric of our own belief system about life. The more we learn, the more we digest as individuals about those around us, both in our own cultures and around the globe, we see that at the very center of these different understandings, a common core of beliefs. Things like love, forgiveness, compassion, health, acceptance, charity and the giving of your own time. While this is by no means a complete list of similarities of things we hold in common with others of different beliefs in life, many of these hold true from one understanding to another.
My belief about The Path We Take project, is that we must come to understand the trials and tribulations of others, to grasp a different view of those students who seem to be acting out in class, that something must certainly be going on in their lives to be causing them to cause such disruption. Historically, as we look over the lives of those before us, such things as parents fighting, getting a divorce, drug or substance abuse, bullying, psychological issues, peer pressure, gender confusion and beyond as strong pre-cursors to any acting out or uncharacteristic behaviour of individuals.
By widening our understanding that these things actually happen far more frequently than we could ever conceive, do we even begin to understand the acting out of those individuals, and possibly give them a little more breathing room, to not add to their stresses and day to day load that they have to bare. Having that understanding that a child is acting up purely because they have sever anxiety in class (due to reasons unknown) do we begin to see that the answers to getting the desired response are in fact opposite to what we have been practicing up until this point. Instead of placing more rules, restrictions and homework making the student feel even less able and empowered, we should in fact, back off a little, give them some breathing room, allow them to catch up and be a little more forgiving of their moods and behaviors, all the while adjusting our connection with them, to let them see we are here to help.
Adjusting my sails as I traverse the waters of teaching day to day is maybe the better, more effective tool we hold in our belt. To be able to change tact, to not take things personally, and adjust our approach on the fly, all the while allowing the student see that we are able to adapt to each situation, changing our initial belief about why the student was acting up or acting out. Giving that individual a sense of fairness and equality.
“Belief” from Oprah’s OWN channel is a must see for anyone wishing to work with the children of the world, for none of us are the same. None of us think the same exact thing about every avenue of life. To have this small and amazingly well documented series available to us is a blessing on so many levels, if only to open our eyes to the myriad of beliefs that make this world.
Each of us would die for something we hold true to our own hearts, be it religion, family, a cause or just plain and simple stubbornness. We believe something so deeply, we “KNOW” it is the one and only way, the purest and most simplest of truths. Each one of us could have been born to any one of the myriad of cultures, religions and races of the planet; our thoughts and beliefs would certainly be different from those we hold dear and true now this moment. To be mindful that your beliefs are not necessarily shared by others. These are the things we need to remember when dealing with others, when we are in a pace of power such as being a teacher.
We are not all made of the same mold, nor cast of the same materials, we are stronger in some ways, weaker in others, and hope that some day, someone will be understanding of our own plight in life as we fight to be understood, where maybe we do not have the ability to make ourselves heard in the way we wish.
This I believe will be a good start to helping those that need our help and guidance. To help our young grow with balance and a healthy dose of hope, understanding and guidance, please visit our main page, learn more about how you can help. Also please feel free to join our Facebook page too to follow along with the latest news.