AEPL is dedicated to increasing the dialogue about non-traditional learning methods and alternative pedagogies. We welcome members and non-members alike to subscribe to and participate in our blog by not only sharing news of interest to our followers but also by contributing to our “Sunday Meditation” series wherein we will examine pedagogical and theoretical topics of interest to our constituency.
If you are a member or even just a follower of AEPL, we urge you to contact us about guest blogging. Blogs are a great space to parse through pedagogical questions or to think through research ideas; both practical and more theoretical topics are invited here.
Blog topics should converge with traditional AEPL interests, including but not limited to: aesthetic, emotional, and moral intelligence; archetypes; body wisdom; care in education; creativity; felt sense theory; healing; holistic learning; humanistic and transpersonal psychology; imaging; intuition; kinesthetic knowledge; contemplative pedagogy; meditation; narration as knowledge; reflective teaching; silence; spirituality; and visualization.
A new “Sunday Meditation” blog post goes live the last Sunday of each month.
Mindfulness is not a luxury for the self-absorbed or another pre-occupation for narcissists but it is a vital necessity for anyone living in what Sven Birkerts calls the great mediation. Through smart phones, computer screens, television screens and all the myriad sources of electronically provides signifiers and texts, everyone faces messages competing for their attention. And the messages, the electronic mediation, is creating a sea of distracted, abbreviated subjectivities, or people. Fifteen years ago, Richard Restak described the electronic mediation’s scattering affect on subjectivity and the individuals’ attention span, relationship to their body, down to the level of the connections between neurons. Of course teachers of writing and literature must the state of their students’ and colleagues’ subjectivity because they aim to teach. Sixty years ago, in the days of blackboards, chalk, so called rhetorics and handbooks, educators griped about the general public’s, including students’ aversion to mental discipline. Edward Conze, a proponent of meditation and mindfulness, was told that meditation involved treating the mind as though it were an “assembly of performing fleas” and not a machine that uses words like tools. The pursuit of meditation and the cultivation mindfulness today is a necessity. My concern is that the study of meditation must be informed by an understanding of hypnotic trance, a brain balancing activity so fundamental to meditation, mindfulness, and other contemplative activities. Hypnotic trance…a neglected area of inquiry.