Welcome to the first contemplative assignment. This image above shows the many different types of contemplative practices. (Links to an external site.)When you are prompted to engage in contemplative practices, you can experiment with any of these.
Please read the essay by Tobin Hart,
(cilck on the name of the article to open a PDF file).
This is a great article, because not only does it give a good explanation of what contemplative education is, but it also outlines its benefits and gives examples of practices – practices that you will be encouraged to experiment with in this course. When you read the article, please focus your attention and/or your note-taking on the following themes:
The WHATS? of contemplative education
The WHYS? of contemplative education
The HOWS? of contemplative education – in other words, identify the different kinds of practices and exercises that he suggests. In particular, learn about the ‘not doing’ exercise, as I will be suggesting that you try that in the first contemplative exercise in the next module.
Using Hart’s article for suggestions, or your own favorite existing techniques, find a calming or centering practice that works for you. If you’d like specific instructions, there are plenty of free mindfulness apps (Links to an external site.) that you can download to your smart phone which offer guided meditations, or you can get written instructions here (Links to an external site.) .Then (if you haven’t done so already) try one of the practices that Hart describes in the ‘Experiments with Knowing’ section (pp.7-16). Write a reflective posting below about your experience.