Monday, 15 July 2013

Roots of Empathy: Introduction ... an example of the resolution of loss of empathy

Roots of Empathy is an evidence-based classroom program that has shown significant effect in reducing levels of aggression among school children while raising social/emotional competence and increasing empathy.

Kindest regards


Do what you love, it's Your Gift to Universe

The BIG Taboo. ......

An example of clear articulation of where responsibility lies for changes in socially accepted unacceptable behaviour. The same logic applies with regard to war, poverty, starvation ect.

It's crucial to get clear in this regard, because there are many distracting threads that lead away from this, that get bogged down in sectarianisms, truisms, misapprehensions and disinformation.

“The problem of the girl in the city is a male problem. If she is deprived of her fair share of environmental contact because she has household tasks which her brothers are able to evade, the answer is a more equitable sharing of these task within the family, especially since her mother, too, probably feels oppressed by the same assumptions. If it is because of a patriarchal religious tradition, the patriarchs have to change. If it’s for fear of sexual exploitation it is the exploiters rather than the girls who have to change their ways. And if the liberation of girls brings in its train an explosion of female crime, it is the equation between bravery and anti-social acts that has to be broken. The environmental liberation of girls, far from implying the girl in the city should become hard and tough in the way that the boy in the city aims to be, demands that the boy, too, should pride himself on those allegedly feminine qualities of care and tenderness.”

Written by Colin Ward, in The Child in The City, pp.136 chapter ‘the girl in the backgound’ 1978

This paragraph demonstrates the kind of clarity that is required when addressing a problem, it’s symptoms and it’s causes. It is the causes that must be recognised, for only then can the appropriate responsibilities for resolution of the problem be determined and assigned.

It is the harms that are caused in Compulsion Schooling (and elsewhere in Society) that I address - one cannot bat them off by pointing at the successes and use that to minimise the meaning and value of the harms experienced, just to protect the Institution and other 'sacred cows' from accurate and constructive criticism. That is irrational.

It’s not that we must change the children, it is that we must (because we can) change our behaviours as adults; the adult world must change.

In school we are punished or sanction if we make mistakes, so we learn to avoid making mistakes, of playing safe, of having to manipulate the situation out of fear. 12 years of fear of punishment, including the witnessing of punishment of others with no let up as such, is quite a fierce conditioning..

The utility of this conditioning to the system of Power, which dominates State Schooling,  is that in this state of fear, we have our brakes on. That way they can keep up with us, otherwise we'd outrun and outwit them, we would create better, more reliable and more sustainable products and we would share as much as we could.

This is what most terrified the early Industrialists and their inheritors, and still does to this day. What those early ‘entrepreneurs’, those ‘ barons of Industry’ who spent 100 years or more deploying vast resources to the project of bringing in worldwide Compulsory State Education wanted most of all was to ensure that no serious competition emerging from the lower, larger classes of people.

Just happy obedience,  in a Utopian Industrial World.

Likewise the so-called 'great Religions'. they strive for the myth, the ideal and yet they  justify the reality.

They do not give their money for concern for the welfare of the people of the world.
Their status as paternalistic rulers was unquestioned, and remains unquestioned, most often assumed to be God given.

They gave their support to this project, which continues to this day, because they wanted to avoid the ‘wet’ business of Empire. The blood-letting. They found it both necessary and distasteful and very bad for their image, which they cultivated assiduously, through ‘charridee’.  They wanted a psychological control to replace the brute force control. They wanted Statism to become a Religion they could manage.

They sought to shape all the children of the Nation, rather than respond to who those children were. They sought to shape the mind of the nation, as a homogenous whole, with dissenters – who will always exist -  arguing amongst themselves, and remaining ineffective.

And it is this toxic relationship between adult and child, where the one with Power sees himself as the shaper of the one without Power and uses any and all means to effect that shaping, and discounts the adverse outcomes and costs to the child in favour of the ideal.

That is the core of The Dominant Culture. That is THE taboo subject of this Culture.

Problems and causes

One of the outcomes of childhood mistreatment and abuse is Obesity.

Another is Diabetes. there are many health implications if later life for Survivors.

There are other factors too, of course. And other outcomes. Addiction, heart disease, depression and so on.

These other factors cannot be used to mitigate the reality of this link,
and it's implications regarding how we treat children and since this affects how our Society matures psychologically, it must be faced, square on. We jus' gotta MAN-UP to the problem!

And another thing! All that Propaganda about 'good food', 'exercise', 'diets' and Government programs to tackle obesity (like some giant rugby ball!) is designed to pre-punish those who are already suffering.  And to get folks to take their eyes off the ball (excuse the pun).

The shame, that same feeling noted above which arises in the child when childrens mistakes are responded to with anger, shaming, derision etc... and remain unresolved, becoming internalised.

All of this is avoidable, all these negative experiences are avoidable and it is a tragedy of negligence!

Kindest regards


Do what you love, it's Your Gift to Universe