My love of learning and teaching

Yazdan Mansourian talks about the sources of his ikigai: his academic life, where he can pursue his love of learning and teaching; the joy of emancipation; and the joy of being in nature.

My ikigai is the love of undertsanding something.

Nick: So we've talked quite a bit on this on your paper. But one thing I like to always ask my guests is what is their ikigai? So what is your ikigai Yazdan?

Yazdan: That's a good question. You know, I always suppose my ikigai is learning and teaching; and still I think learning and teaching is the core component of my ikigai. 

However, in terms of terminology, I can be a little bit more specific now. Because when I reflect on it, I think my ikigai is the love of understanding something. 

So when I talk about learning, I'm talking about understanding something, a moment of epiphany, or satori, when you have an aha moment and you say, “Wow, that's it. I understood it.” So that's my first ikigai.

Then share it with others because as soon as I understand something, I can't wait to share it with someone – write a paper about it, and attend a podcast like here, because I can't keep it for myself. I have to share it with someone and then go and find something else. 

So that's my main ikigai, and basically in my academic life, it gives me a primary platform to pursue my ikigai of learning and teaching

And also, I have two more sources of ikigai: the joy of emancipation and the joy of observing living creatures, including plants, trees, animals, birds. So that's why I love gardening and mindful walking, to immerse myself in nature – to be more present.