Teachers teach and do the world good, kings just rule and most are never understood. If you were to rule or govern a certain industry all inside this room would be in misery. No one would get along nor sing a song, cause everyone’s be singing for the king, am I wrong? – Krs One
When I watched the movie IP Man something stood out to me and was crystalized in my mind while reading Dave Lowry’s book Moving Towards Stillness: Lessons In Daily Life From The Martial Ways Of Japan. During the movie, Ip Man is meeting with several sifus (teachers) of local martial arts schools to demonstrate his style of the art.
In a chapter of the book Lowry relates a story of a sensei that loses everything during World War II. Losing his business, his wife to pneumonia, a month later getting the news his son was killed in action. On top of that the master was living in a tin shanty out in the open with very few clothes, food given to him by his neighbors and students. Shortly there after a fire destroyed everything in the neighborhood right after the Japanese government surrendered to the U.S.
The master, and everyone around him, appeared to have nothing. Then, having nothing, the neighborhood turned to the master. He was a budo teacher. This meant the people ‘looked up to him.’ He was a teacher. The teacher was a well respected pillar of the community. He had nothing, but the neighborhood turned to him not because he was a big businessman, not because he had persevered through horrendous adversity, not because he was a master of the martial arts, but because he was a teacher.
Teachers in our society have been deminished to the value of their paychecks. Our current society places the worth of something based on its monetary equivalent. Since American society has continued to pay the teacher very little for the value they are to render via education to our children, teachers are no longer accepted as a great value to our society, the teacher is no longer respected as a pillar of the community.Teaching has never been a profession that one would become wealthy and this was a known to all who pursued the profession, but one thing was understood, even when I was a child, that the teacher was to be held in very high esteem.
Teachers once held themselves in very high esteem and understood their position in society and for society. Historically, teachers were “looked up to” and the title of teacher bestowed upon a person, whether a professional teacher in a school system, a martial arts instructor or a teacher of religion the title was a crown of the utmost importance in society. Even Jesus was adorned with the title teacher. Rabbi, as Jesus was commonly called is a word that comes from the Hebrew root word horah, meaning “he taught…”
Mary was the mother of Jesus and as such she was his first teacher. Maybe, just maybe, when our society places woman where she really should be, no longer looking at her as “just a vessel” and understanding her true roll and value of any strong and lasting society, will the teacher be elevated back to the the esteemed position of our society. Maybe, just maybe, when the title of teacher is elevated to it’s true heights our teachers will see themselves beyond that of just another “human resource” to be consumed by societal madness and see themselves as one of the pillars up holding the building of society.