Each week, I go to the green outdoor and get free standing meditationlessons from an integer and highly skilled Tai Chi teacher. Even though financially, this teacher is not living the high life, he refuses to take a teaching fee. Instead he gives all his knowledge for free, as well as his time to correct each student during the training.
This is as far as I know, an uncommon practise in the West.
His reason is to pass on the correct knowledge and skills, to honour the art as well as to friendship, and doesn’t see the combination with profitmaking fit. This is true freedom, as there are no responsibilities towards any customers due to receiving payment.
In comparison, many “spiritual” teachers ask large sums of money, whilst promising lifechanging excercises. However, many of these exercises are very basic, taken from excisting disciplines such as Yoga, Tai Chi or Qigong and other meditation practises.
Terminologies such as “natural movement”, “relaxation”, “mindfullness” and “energy”, have become increasingly popular as a sellingpoint. Unfortunatly, these are often empty words when promises are made by teachers who value income more than the quality of their skills.
To come back to this teacher who teaches for free; as much as there is the possibility of the teacher taking financial advantage of his students, the roll can be reverse; by receiving training for free, the students easily falls into a comfort zone, like a teenager who doesn’t have to pay his parents, doesn’t have to cook and do the laundry.
“by receiving training for free, the students easily falls into a comfort zone, like a teenager who doesn’t have to pay rent to his parents, doesn’t have to cook and do the laundry.”
The name of the danger is “unawareness”, which leads to possibility the student taking the teacher’s lesson and care for granted.
… a free drink, or some fruit, an occasional present and above all, geniune respect and care. If there is truly no money, a simple thank you. It doesn’t have to be expensive, when it comes from the heart.
If we look about the ying yang symbol; then taking and giving co-exist in order to be one. In the same sense that any discipline for cultivating body-awareness is hollow if one doesn’t also cultivate the mind, the heart and one’s intention.