Download the article: Attending to Interconnection, Living the Lesson
How does one see a painting whole? Or the human mind? Or an ecosystem? Or for that matter, the educational project itself? We are well schooled in "seeing them"" into parts-into brushstrokes, neurons, and molecules-or seeing the university apart into departments, disciplines, and specializations. What kind of attentiveness will enable us to see a true whole? What is the pedagogy for beholding interconnectedness as a primary reality and not a derived one? What are the implications of a deep experience of interconnection for knowing, teaching, learning, and life? What would be gained if, as the Dalai Lama says, we were to cultivate "a deep sense of caring for others, based on a profound sense of interconnection?" 1 It is perhaps difficult to appreciate how extensive the changes would be if this integrative viewpoint were fully embraced in higher education. The conventional view that privileges a single reductive perspective is so pervasive that undoing its effects will be difficult, but if we were to succeed, then the fragmentation of our education and our lives would be healed. Simultaneous with our experience of self would be the powerful complementary experience of human interdependence, of what Desmond Tutu calls ubuntu "I exist because of you."
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