The Busyness Of Raising Children

narings-liv-useLanguage is consciousness.

The Swedish word for business is närings – liv. It means nourishment for life or nurturing life. In English the word business means “to be busy” – “a state of being much occupied or engaged”, or “what one is about at the moment,” (comes from bisignes in Old English 1).

What are we about in every moment we are in the “business” of education and child development? Yes, business. What has happened over the past 100 years is a burgeoning of business (busy-ness) in education and youth development which some have termed the “child industrial complex”… a far cry from the idea of business as “nourishing life.”

More on language

The word Homo sapiens comes from the Latin for “wise man,” or “ be wise man.” Are we as a species really becoming “wise”? One of the most controversial questions facing evolutionary biologists is whether the individual or the community is the single most important entity of our species. Is our primal story about the survival of the fittest and rugged individualism or is it a story about how all things are related and “it takes a whole village to raise a child?”

Nourishing life in a world of survival of the fittest

Many of the challenges and problems we face today are generally related to how we satisfy our basic and essential needs without destroying the psychological sense of community: the sense that there is a network of and structure to relationships that strengthens rather than dilutes feelings of belonging (Sarason ’74). The earth and everything in nature are part of the community in which we need to have feelings of belonging.

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The Swedish word for business is närings – liv. It means nourishment for life or nurturing life. Are we nourishing the lives of our children? Read more: The Busyness of Raising Children