Collected Works of Heesoon Bai

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This collection contains the collected works of Professor Heesoon Bai of the SFU Faculty of Education and was made possible by the SFU Library's Scholarly Digitization Fund.

Relationship as teacher of sustainability: Post-individualist education

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2014
Abstract: 

In the face of destructive human presence, sustainability has become a prominent and central theme of the
contemporary environmental and wellbeing discourse. Our chapter takes the current environmental and
sociopolitical challenges humanity faces as our species’ developmental issue precipitated by the bonding
rupture between human beings and other beings. We propose that the sustainability discourse be taken
in the direction of healing the wounds of bonding rupture and facilitating the evolution of human
consciousness and development of a more mature identity. We posit that the latter is concomitant with
overcoming materialistic individualism and moving towards the relational integration of self, community,
and world. We make the case that these relational practices are intrinsic to evolving and developing
sustainable humanity. In particular, this chapter shows, by way of narrative illustrations, how we may
create teaching and learning environments in schools and other institutions that are conducive to
experiencing and internalizing a relational sense of self.

Document type: 
Book chapter
File(s): 

Buddhism as a system of education

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015
Abstract: 

The historical Buddha, Shakyamuni Gautama, is said to have declared that he taught one thing and only one thing: how suffering (dukkha) originates, and how it can cease. He characterized ordinary everyday life for humans as being suffused with dukkha through and through. Ranging from the subtlest shades of dissatisfaction with life to acute anguish, dukkha follows us like our own shadow. Who hasn’t experienced dukkha in countless shades and shapes in one’s lifetime? The Buddha’s Father, King Suddhodana, set out to protect his son from experiencing dukkha, mobilizing his whole kingdom in this project, but ultimately he failed in his endeavor. Instead of being blissfully ignorant of dukkha, as his father wished, the Buddha became an “authority” on dukkha. He experienced it deeply and researched it intensively. He liberated himself from dukkha.Like so many people who turn to the Buddha’s teachings to gain relief from their suffering, I too took my refuge in his Dharma teachings at the height of my own acute suffering that was threatening to burn down my house of being from the inside.  

Document type: 
Book chapter
File(s): 

Eastern wisdom, inner work, and aging: a contribution in second wave positive psychology

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2019
Abstract: 

This paper proposes to make contribution to second wave positive psychology by suggesting a post-egoic view of humanity that overcomes the positive-negative binary and sees all attributes and qualities of human experience as containing rich and holistic materials for ego transformation. It is pointed out that the ego-based psychology that undergirds much of current positive psychology ignores the mutual nature of human existence and a sense of humanity being continuous with the rest of the universe. Using aging as the context for a case study, this paper makes the case that when aging is viewed from a post-egoic psychological perspective such as is inherent in Daoism, what emerges is a possibility of living a life of wisdom, compassion, joy, and qi-infused creativity through aging as ‘saging.’ This paper affirms that aging is a critical and integral part of human growth and development. Additionally, a creative inner work example is provided that demonstrates a possibility of integrating and transforming negative experience in the service of moving towards a post-egoic self.

Document type: 
Article
File(s): 

Ma of education

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2019
Document type: 
Book chapter
File(s): 

When the immeasurable leads: A pedagogical dialogue

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2016
Document type: 
Article
File(s): 

Ethical-Ecological Holism in Science Pedagogy: In Honor of Sea Urchins

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2017
Abstract: 

In this chapter, we explore the unquestioned use and killing of animals in biological education, through a mixed-methods study involving narrative inquiry, poetic inquiry, and essay composition. Based on our results, we call for a shift to a more ethical-ecological holistic framework for science pedagogy. We argue that, for this shift to occur, we need to critically re-examine the foundational philosophical basis of, as well as accompanying psychological work that goes into, the de-animated and desacralized empiricist worldview. We also propose to re-animate, and to reclaim a sacred perception of, the world through aesthetic and contemplative practices alongside scientific investigations.

Document type: 
Book chapter
File(s): 

Pedagogical infusion of the contemplative: SFU's Contemplative Inquiry Master's of Education Program in Canada

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2019
Abstract: 

This chapter narrates a design story behind creating a graduate program that thematizes contemplative inquiry and practice as a pedagogic modality. It also offers a critical examination by the founding faculty of the program on what is understood as contemplative education. Finally, it details some of the key findings of student experience pertaining to the program. As a whole, this chapter is offered as an illuminating, and hopefully instructive, tale of one Canadian contemplative education graduate program in the context of a Master’s program.

Document type: 
Book chapter
File(s): 

Soil, soul, society: Regeneration from the vital-core

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2019
Abstract: 

My talk will focus on examining the ontological and epistemological basis for our major cultural practices, such as child-rearing, schooling, and work life. The focus of my examination is to reveal the corrupt and bankrupt state of these cultural practices that manifest what I will frame as phenomenology of dehumanization that includes “Vampire Operation,” “Hungry Ghosts Roaming,” “Machine Impersonation” and so on. My examination will incorporate a reflection on my personal experience of growing up and being schooled in Korea, immigrating to Canada, struggling to raise a family and have a university teaching career, and now witnessing around me growing panic as well as denial about the state of the world. Out of all this, I will propose and illustrate a regeneration project for the endangered “soil, soul, and society” through re-animating the (for lack of better word) “vital-core” to our humanity. It is my credo that this core, if rightly understood and sufficiently cultivated, nourished, and empowered, could resist the exclusionary, atomistic, homocentric, egocentric, dualistic, moralistic, instrumentalist, and measurement-oriented ways of thinking, perceiving, and acting that currently dominate the world, including the academy. I emphasize that the first-order responsibility of the educators, akin to that of Hippocratic Oath, is to regenerate and nourish, not maim, starve, or numb this core in everyone whom we meet and teach. I will explore with you a few practical ways of going about recovering and nourishing the vital-core.

Document type: 
Lecture / Talk
File(s): 

Savouring the free lunch: Edible activism and the joy of foraging

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2020
Abstract: 

At a time when industrial agriculture and multi-national conglomerates dominate the foodscape in many parts of the Western world, when the ecological context of food is often excised from the act of eating, can the practice of foraging help reshape our sense of belonging within the earth community? In this chapter, we present a dialogue on our foraging experiences. David reflects on the impact of shucking oysters on a remote island, catching smelt in a stream and struggling to identify berries from a field guide. Heesoon recalls her botanical education under the tutelage of her mother, who imparted her traditional knowledge on edible weeds, and picking berries with her daughters. Through each of these episodes, we explore the sacramental, cultural, relational, and educational significance of our foraging experiences. Although foraging practices cannot promise to feed the current world population, we suggest that intentional foraging practice can constitute a form of edible activism, a way of re-thinking and reshaping participation in a pervasive consumer culture that sees food as commodity rather than communion.

Document type: 
Book chapter
File(s): 

Graduate school as Bardo: Contemplative inquiry, ecology, and justice

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2018
Document type: 
Lecture / Talk
File(s):