Our Vision

Spirit in Education Movement (SEM) is a transformative learning organisation providing education in Thailand and wider Southeast Asia that is based on ecology, engaged spirituality and local wisdom. SEM was founded in 1995 on the auspicious Makha Bucha Day with the aim to offer alternatives to mainstream education that are founded upon personal and societal transformation. The founders of SEM recognised that current trends in mainstream education in South East Asia were not in tune with the realities of the changing world, and since then have spent over a decade developing an alternative curriculum rooted in social justice, cultural integrity and deep concern for ecological sustainability. SEM’s holistic approach is built upon engaged spirituality which focuses on transformation of the self alongside transformation of society. We work for a change in worldviews and values that uphold unsustainable and violent structures of society through critical analysis, self awareness and creative thinking in combination with learning from experience, or praxis of reflection and action. This leads to changes in behaviour, helping us to live happily, work effectively and understand and respect each other. At a social level, this participatory and inclusive approach has been effective in creating platforms for growing peoples participation and building networks for resilient social change. The scope of SEM’s educational courses mainly to go to the roots of happiness and wellbeing in life without emphasizing on materialism and achievements. They combine knowledge and spirituality to help participants to develop values which are significant foundations to love and understand oneself and others, to respect nature and all living things, to deepen awareness around social justice and to be encouraged to make a better society.


Our Philosophy


The philosophy underlying our work is that true education should bring about an awareness and understanding of ourselves and wider society, that can enable us to be able to act with compassion and skilful means to transform destructive patterns of living that are so prevalent in the world today. We see holistic education as a learning process that:

  • Links together action, meditation, art and intellectual learning in order to develop an holistic learning experience and balanced growth
  • Uses group and participatory learning as an effective tool to build knowledge
  • Creates an environment of learning to awaken natural wisdom, cultivate compassion and develop intelligence
  • Empowers participants to develop their confidence, thereby encouraging a process of social change


Our Educational Principles

1. Participatory SEM’s facilitation methodology is based on our philosophy and experience of socially engaged?spiritual work, according to the following five principles: The facilitation process should model mutual respect and equality, encouraging open communication and self-reliant learning. 2. Experiential Learning by doing, using practical exercises, exposure visits, study tours and field-based work in order to connect knowledge with felt experience. 3. Holistic Appreciating the relations between ecological, social, political, economic and psychological processes, and the connections between inner and outer development. 4. Promoting Cultural Empowerment Giving confidence to the role of tradition and culture in modern life. 5. Spiritually Grounded Encouraging self-knowledge and spiritual growth as a foundation for acquiring and applying knowledge.


 Curriculum Content and Approach

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