Jack Miller Calls for a More Holistic Approach to Education

On March 3, Dr Jack Miller joined the Dalai Lama Center for an intimate gathering to share his thoughts on "Educating for Wisdom and Compassion". At the core of this dialogue was Dr Miller's belief in a holistic education that aims to develop what he calls the "whole child".

Jack Miller with Dalai Lama Center President and CEO Lynn Green

Part of Dr Miller's approach to educating the whole child is to teach the concept of interconnectedness. It is interconnectedness that shows students the relations between their thoughts and their actions.

"In Buddhism they have a phrase that I read to my students almost every class. 'The thought manifests the word. The word manifests the deed. The deed develops into habit. And the habit hardens into character. So watch the thought and its ways with care and let it be born out of love and respect for all beings.'"

Dr Jack Miller was joined by Marna Macmillan of Coquitlam's School District #43 and DLC President and CEO Lynn Green.

Dr Miller also encouraged contemplative practices in the classroom. He requires all of his graduate students to enter a six-week meditation course. While many find it difficult at first, Dr Miller says almost all of his students eventually come to appreciate the meditation.

"At the beginning, the first couple of weeks, they get very mad at me," he says. "They say. 'How can you do this to me? I'm a busy person'. You know? The nerve. To sit here and do nothing. But by the third or fourth week, they begin to see a difference and they begin to feel better."

"Producing or consuming. That's what we do. To do nothing is one of the most radical acts that we can do in this culture."

Dr Jack Miller takes questions from the audience after the dialogue

To hear more from Dr Miller's presentation, visit his Speakers Series page where you can listen to the audio podcast as well as a video clip from the event.


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