Teaching is not an easy task and it is clear that some teachers of the occult have never actually learned to teach. Just because you have mastered the occult does not mean you have mastered teaching. Teaching is its own subject and your frustrations with the quality of students may be down to the fact that you don't really know how to teach.
- A good teacher is interested in and listens to the opinions of their students - if you do not allow them to voice their questions however banal or off-the-wall it is impossible to judge the efficacy of your teaching, if you are condescending or patronizing they will despise you.
- A good teacher enters into a dialogue with their students allowing them to teach the teacher - from the very simple understanding that you as a teacher are learning more about the variety of students out there so you can continue to successfully adapt your teaching strategies all the way to ideas, insights and brilliant suggestions that sometimes emerge from students.
- A good teacher plans their lessons in ways that make the information challenging but not incomprehensible. Do not expect the millenial generation to sit in silence while you lecture them from the front for a few hours. Make your lessons interactive. Use different resources. Plan activities. Learn about teaching.
Another teacher who has adapted and who is also cherished is Josephine McCarthy who gives her course for free online at Quareia. This widely respected individual has given of her own time to create and sustain a resource of immeasurable value for free. She has done this because she cares about the tradition and knows that it must adapt if it wants to continue.
Why should I, as a potential student, buy your book on magic when I can read Iamblichus, Plato, Levi, Crowley, Newton, Fludd, Bardon, etc for free? With all kinds of lectures available for free on youtube why should I pay for your course or pay for a convention which includes the cost of flying you to wherever it is being held? You have to be able to answer these questions especially in economically challenging times.
The millenial generation do have flaws as learners even if you plan and prepare as a master of teaching. You can be delivering an excellent lesson and a modern student will still check their phone occassionally. This is part of that student's internet addiction. Often the student is doing nothing but nihilistically scrolling through banal adverts and reposted content from their friends. Some are accumulating ''likes'' as social media continues its roll out of Skinneresque positive reinforcement strategies. Obviously in the pursuit of wisdom there are students out there who are good learners and they adopt approaches to learning that help them get the most out of their lessons. They know they have to check or at least minimize certain behaviours if they want to succeed. They are the ones with the will. They are the ones you should focus on.
The fact remains though that you as a teacher are going to be more successful and complain less if you embrace the new culture. There are amazing students in this new generation with incredible potential and its your duty to attempt to bridge the divide.
More importantly lead by example. Teachers who whine about their students don't cut very fine figures. Teachers who whine about not having enough money or their students' unwillingness to give them money don't appear to be successful sorcerers. This is not rocket science.
I haven't given up on learning. I am a still a student. I am also a teacher. And ultimately a scientist not a scholar. I post theories, experiences and experiments on this blog and I am not ashamed of admitting when I have made a mistake. I will commit passionately to my hypotheses because those pursued with a full heart are the only ones that have really been given a fair test. If we all did this together, as peers, we would see revival and regrowth of our community because the world we are exploring is a fascinating one and once you have glimpsed it, it is impossible to look away. If your heart is not on fire with curiousity and in love with knowledge you were never meant for this path.