Sunday, May 01, 2005

Building immunity

Cul put me to the test of my own brave words a while back by asking me how, if selfish behaviour reinforces negative expectations and negative expectations work as excuses for selfish behavior, might we break the cycle.

I am repeatedly shocked to find that I do not have the answer to some questions. None the less, I answered. I post that non-answer because its a stab at how we can prevent the cycle altoghether rather than the much harder task of getting adults out of ruts long laid down and well worn in. This puts me on record as owing a better answer but for starters condisider how important it is to immunize children from some of the self perpetuating diseases that are out there.

It should be taken as our most profound and least avoidable duty to resolutely love our children:
  1. not to raise them with lessons of reprisal for wrong doings,
  2. always to show them how we ourselves struggle with our selfish impulses
  3. to take every opportunity to teach them, when they are hurt, how much of the hurt comes from their own expectation of others
  4. for the outright wrongs of others, be they punished or profitiable, to diagram the upstream and downstream chain of failures to sense connection that attend these wrongs.
  5. lead them to be alert but do not leave them hungry for praise, security or even companionship. Try to leave them whole and satisfied as what they are,who they are and where they are for so they were when born.
  6. have the presence of mind, when conflict comes into their lives, to show them how balance can be reached in the ever present contention between connection(4) and self sufficiency(5)
The entitlements of childhood are a peg on which I mean to hang a great deal...stay tuned.

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