Animateur:- The word is French and referrers to someone capable of presenting abstruse and complicated philosophical ideas in clear, vivid and attractive form.
I first encountered this word on top of the moors above Throssel, Northumberland. My companion used it to describe his teacher’s exceptional ability to explain Buddhism with great clarity and vision. I’d agree completely.
Now having taken a look around the Internet I see that there are people employed as Animateurs. In the case below such a person can help bring music, the understanding and appreciation of it presumably, to the general public. Perhaps to those who would not normally go and listen to classical music.
The tradition of having an animateur as an integral part of an orchestra is, curiously, British. Many orchestras in the U.K. have animateurs on staff (some are orchestra musicians and some are composers); they are musicians who are committed to community work. That’s what an animateur is, but what does one do?
An Animateur’s Journey: A report from the field
Again, Animateurs are being employed to address community issues, such as health.
Animateurs are recruited from the local community and can receive fees and training for a fixed time period. In Doncaster Health Action Zone, people were recruited from the local community to work as community health animateurs. They became involved in included community audits and delivering training on community issues. They also undertook work placements in a range of community and health organisations.
This word brings with it much food for thought, that is in terms of developing wise ways of animating Buddhism, especially here in the West. Perhaps Buddhist blogs play their part.