I felt like a failure. It was an awful, depressing feeling.
I was enrolled in a university class called Circuits & Systems II, and I hadn’t passed a single exam. I needed to drop the class and take stock of my life – maybe I wasn’t smart enough to get an engineering degree. A difficult assessment for any 17 year old.
But what subsequently transpired changed my life forever.
I dropped the class and added it the next semester. But the second time, I had a different teacher. This professor knew how to motivate students and was well-versed in pushing through learning blocks. I totally got the material, aced every exam, and developed a lifelong love of engineering which opened many doors for me.
I had a similar experience with English literature. While I had no interest in the topic, it was part of a required curriculum. And the teacher was amazing; sparking a hidden passion for writing and literature.
In most cases, the difference between a great class and anything less can be directly attributed to the teacher.
In the University of Life, we find ourselves enrolled in many classes including Human Growth & Decay, Relationships 101, and Advanced Human Affairs. Sometimes we fail or drop these classes, perhaps taking them over and over again.
What we don’t realize is that there is a teacher instructing and guiding every one of these courses. As a matter of fact, we choose the teacher for each lesson. But there is a caveat – there are only two teachers to choose from.
One of those teachers always has our best interests at heart and guarantees that we’ll happily ace the class. The other purports to benefit us but in actuality is quite sneaky and deceptive. This second teacher actually wants us to believe we can pass and be happy – and sometimes even offers us glimmers of such an outcome – but secretly plans to fail us, thereby ensuring we take the class again and again.
Which teacher do you think we choose?
For all of us, this second teacher is ourselves. We think we know how to interpret every situation and thus think we know not only the lessons to learn, but how best to respond in any given circumstance.
As we read in A Course in Miracles:
In no situation do you perceive your own best interests. In the presence of your conviction that you do know what they are, you cannot learn. (W-pI.24.1;2)
Thus are we counseled to first recognize that choosing this teacher leads to miserable outcomes, following which we may opt for a different teacher.
Resign now as your own teacher … for you were badly taught. (T-12.VI.8; T-28.I.7)
[This new teacher] would teach you nothing except how to be happy. (T-14.V.2)
A teacher that teaches us nothing except how to be happy is a wonderful teacher indeed. One who helps us properly interpret every encounter, each moment of the day. And not just teaching us how to learn, but also coaching us on how to apply the lessons in every situation. With such a teacher, we are guaranteed to graduate from Life University summa cum laude – with the highest honor.
Join us in Monday’s class where we will explore how to make the choice for this amazing teacher and subsequently experience a classroom like you never imagined possible. I look forward to seeing you then.