“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” – Leonardo Da Vinci
I was told by a Zen master that the golden age of Zen creativity was in the Tang dynasty in China (618 -907) where the teaching was very simple and relevant to everyday life situations that even ordinary people who didn’t have much education could understand. But after Tang Dynasty, people began making Zen so complicated that only the elites could understand, and Zen lost its appeal with the ordinary people since then.
Enneagram is an accurate map of human nature and experience, and the knowledge is helpful in self-awareness and self-transformation. But it is quite a complex and dynamic system that making it difficult for people without much psychological and spiritual background to really understand and appreciate its beauty and values.
Learning from the Zen creativity in Tang Dynasty, it becomes clear to me that for Enneagram to become a common knowledge and tool that can be used by most people, it has to be taught in a way that is simple for people to understand and relate.
“I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.” – Confucius
I’ve studied with many great enneagram teachers in the world and the more I learnt, the more I am convinced that a good teacher has to really digest and internalise the knowledge they learnt into their blood and soul, embody their teaching in their daily lives so that it becomes part of them.
Each great teacher I encountered has his/her own unique teaching style, but what they have in common are their presence, passion and experiential approach in engaging the learners in their head, heart and body throughout the whole learning process.
So, in conclusion, my teaching philosophies are as follows:
- Making the teaching simple and easy to understand
- Creating an open, respectful and safe learning environment
- Engaging learners through active participation like Q&A, and experiential learning activities.
- Giving feedback or debriefing to deepen the learning experiences