Item ID : 4456

Rockefeller, S. C. (2006). Meditation, social change, and undergraduate education. Teacher’s College Record, (108) 9, 1775-1786

Item ID : 4456

Rockefeller identifies a threefold development in contemporary social movements in America: “(1) a deepening commitment to democratic social values, including human rights and peace, (2) an ecological reconstruction of how people think and live, and (3) a fresh spiritual awakening to the immanence of the sacred in the world.” (p. 1775) This third aspect: “involves a new sense of wonder in the face of the mystery and beauty of the natural world and a rediscovery of the sacred. It entails a realization of the sacredness of one’s own life and of all life. It involves an integration of the sacred and the secular, spiritual life and everyday life. It recognizes that ultimate meaning is found in community and by developing a compassionate, democratic, and ecological self that is inclusive, expanding to embrace all life” (p. 1776).

Pedagogical principles: Rockefeller suggests a number of strategies for introducing meditation: 1) Demythologization – providing people with: “a rational understanding of what it is and what it can and cannot do.” (p. 1780). 2) Tying meditation to Western psychology 3) Broadening academic perspective on meditation through research in sociology, religion and psychology. 4) Considering questions concerned with the academy’s spiritual/religious neutrality, academic accreditation for contemplative practice and other.

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