According to Webster’s Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary, a mentor is a wise and trusted counselor while a teacher is a person who teaches or instructs. I have had many teachers in my life, as I am sure you have too. From the time you took your first breath you were surrounded by teachers; teaching you how to feed yourself, walk, talk, right from wrong, reading, writing and arithmetic, family, friends and relationships, etc., etc. You were a clean slate when arrived here and placed in the arms of your mother and fussed over by family. And they were the first teachers to begin filling up your slate.
Through the years I encountered a few mentors; those who knew more than me and spent their time and energy to guide me. When I was trying to make my way through the world of corporate business, I was taken under my boss’ wing and given opportunities to excel in the world of information technology. When I was confused by my intuitive abilities, I found myself setting across from a woman who unselfishly taught me how to develop and use these gifts, and set me on a path of self-realization and spiritual awakening. There were many caring and giving teachers along the way, but my mentors seemed to always have a way of pushing me beyond my comfort zone and opening windows so I could fly.
One such mentor was a chiropractor. He pushed me so far out of my comfort zone I doubt that I would have ever had the courage to do the things I have accomplished these past 15 years. Because he pushed me to further define and understand who I was, what I could or couldn’t do, and how I view life spiritually, he made it possible for me to ‘find’ my last spiritual mentor. One who taught me about ceremony, Spirit and walking the good red road.
So while I view a teacher as someone who helps you understand something, a subject, or concept, a mentor is someone who helps you find yourself, your way, your voice, and perhaps your soul.
Who were your mentors? And, what did you learn?