Humanistic Buddhism and learning
This paper reviews major findings in the theory of learning from the Western cognitive psychology literature. Four general principles of learning are found: learning is affected by prior knowledge; learning is a social process; learning is situational; and learning involves the use of strategy. It is then argued that Buddhism, because of its long tradition of emphasizing education and teaching, has been applying and has perfected these four principles in its quest for enlightenment. The paper then describes major Buddhist practices which are related to the four principles of learning. Finally, the paper gives some examples of applying Buddhist educational practices to classrooms by contemporary educators.